There’s something wonderful about being a mother.
When I held my son for the very first time, everything about my precious boy amazed me. His fuzzy head, his tiny nose, his grey-blue eyes, his fingers and toes. I kissed every part of him and prayed that his hands would be lifted in praise to God and his feet would walk in the way of Jesus.
I imagine Mary also marveled at her baby boy as she kissed His downy head. I am sure she gazed at His face as He slept and her heart was awash with Mother-love. But when she pondered where those feet would go and what those hands would do, surely the words of the angel echoed in her heart: “You will give birth to a son . . . He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David, and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever; His kingdom will never end” (Luke 1:31-33).
Her son was destined for greatness – but she could never imagine the path He would take to get there. Rejection, persecution, suffering, and death would mark Jesus’ earthly life. He would wear a crown of thorns rather than a crown of gold and His hands and feet would be nailed to a cross rather than kissed in adoration.
But there, in the smelly stable, she kissed that sweet face and caressed those tiny fingers, knowing in her heart that her life would never be the same. He would one day “save His people from their sins” (Matthew 1:21), but this little one needed her now. The helpless future King was depending on His mother to feed and nurture Him until He fulfilled God’s purpose.
Babies bring out the tenderness in a mother’s heart and no doubt Mary felt the sweetness of her newborn son even as she wondered about the angelic announcement. His life held the greatest purpose imaginable. He was destined to be a King, but not tonight – tonight He was her baby boy with tiny fingers and tiny toes.