Holy ground today. Mary the mother of Jesus, and on Mothering Sunday. There will not be another woman in either the Old or New Testament who has inspired so much devotion, controversy and bitter disagreement amongst believers. It must be something to do with her proximity to God.
And the story is familiar, unlike many we have covered already. Not many people outside (and to an extent, inside) the church have heard of Jael, for instance, or of Phoebe, a splendid New Testament woman (number 40 in our Lent list), but everyone has some handle on the mother of God.
In the light of all this, I feel an imaginative rather than a doctrinal stance might be the best approach, along with a sad acknowledgement that Christians down the ages have, literally, come to blows over how to interpret such a crucial, devout and obedient servant of the Most High.
So, Mary, mother of Christ:
Surprise; horror; obedience; trust; meditation; delight; childbirth; love; marriage; fear; escape; refugee; housewife; mother; worry; ordinary; extraordinary; prayer; wonder; worry; rejection; fear; pleading; terror; calamity; piercing sorrow; silence; love; trust; prayer; surprise; joy; trust; trust; trust.