Mother’s Loving Sacrifice

Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne?

-Isaiah 49:15

Dear members and friends,

“Change” is a word often used to describe our current time and age. Many things have changed locally and globally, and are still changing. Cultures, religions, and norms of living are shared and mixed globally. A person living in Korea may love a German singer while being a Buddhist and desiring to live in a Western-style home. Some changes have proven to bring mutual benefits to all citizens of the earth, while some changes have aroused concerns and fears. 

One of the changes that I have noticed is the popular attitude toward marriage and marriage relationships, especially among young professionals living in advanced countries. In these settings, the traditional reason to marry has become mostly obsolete: a man does not have to marry for the sake of continuing the lineage of his family nor does a woman have to marry for the sake of her survival and reputation of her family. Both men and women are free to choose either to marry or not! To me, this is a good change. Since marriage has become a matter of one’s own choice, one should be willingly and intentionally responsible for its fruition as well. 

Now let’s talk about having a child. While officiating over 500 weddings for the past 22 years, it came to my attention that many responsible couples make an intentional plan to have a child. Especially if the newly-married were to live in a city like San Francisco without strong support from their family, when to have a child could make a significant difference. While raising a child certainly requires strong teamwork from both parents, I must confess as a father of two beautiful children that more sacrifice is required of the mother than the father. In my experience, having and raising a child requires almost unconditional sacrifice of the mother as the one who would carry the child in her womb for nine months and then breastfeed the child for many months after. The caring support of her partner is definitely a big part in this critical time, yet these sacrifices fall solely to the birth mother. 

My brothers and sisters, let us all give thanks to God for having a mother to whom we owe our existence. And, if you had or have a loving and caring mother, please take a good moment to express your heartfelt gratitude for her sacrifices.      

Blessings, Rev. Junchol Lee