I felt the tears start to well up from the depths of my heart. Tears that were indistinguishable; for I had not before met tears that held such joy and grief. It felt like a pinch at the bottom of my heart. A physical pain, I could feel at the depth of my momma soul. My eyes scanned the document and I didn’t make it to the fourth line before I found myself sitting on the kitchen floor crying. In my hand I held what I had longed for and prayed over. For three years I longed for his name to match mine. To look him in the eyes and to call him son. The lines of names on that birth certificate finally matched mine and I felt great joy, only to be met by sorrow.
Line one, his new legal name. A name we had chosen for him because it means God is my strength; God has shown me great favor. My eyes progressed to line two-gender, male. Line three, his date of birth. Through my water-filled eyes I reach line four. Time of birth, 8:07am. Tears trickled down my face as I slowly sank to the kitchen floor. I was familiar with these tears for they were tears of joy. At 8:07am on that day in September my son was born. He took his first breath and his life of infinite value and worth began. I progressed to line five-city of birth, line six-state of birth and line seven- county. As I reached line seven I felt the tears streaming down of both joy and sorrow, mixed one in the same. Tears I had not yet met before.
Line seven –mother’s name. I had seen this birth certificate before and three years ago that line said a different name, one that wasn’t mine. The name that originally filled that line had been erased. Deleted. Eliminated. Omitted. Another mother’s baby was no longer her own. That line signified loss, pain and heartache. It echoed a fallen world of sin and anguish. I sat thinking about the name that use to fill that line and I prayed. I prayed that the choices she has made would no longer define her. That she would discover a love greater than one she has ever known. That she would come to know that His grace is sufficient and his power is made perfect in weakness. That who she is, is enough.
I thought of my son and the tattered wounds that he will one day come to know. The loss that he has already experienced in his short-lived life. The mom in me wanted make him whole. I wanted to fix his wounds. I sat on that kitchen floor and I wept. Again came the, now more familiar, tears of both sorrow and joy as truth echoed over my crumb-covered kitchen floors. I knew that I could not make my son whole, that I could not fix those wounds. Those were the tears of sorrow. For whatever reason, at 8:07am that September morning Jesus knew my sons first breath of life would be born into a broken story. I felt those burning tears of sorrow slowly turn to that of joy as He whispers, I’m not finished yet. I’m still making things new. I am making beauty rise from the ashes. I’m still writing the pages of this story. I will redeem it. I will sanctify it and make it whole.