This is the insight my friend shared with me, one that she herself had gained in a grief-filled moment of praying to the Blessed Mother.
When the angel Gabriel appeared to Mary and told her of God’s plan for her, she gave her famous answer. “Let it be done unto me according to your word.” In that moment, she handed her life over to God, but more specifically, she handed over her womb.
In that instant she agreed to do as God asked her. This would mean carrying the Son of God and watching him die on the Cross and eventually following him to Heaven, but Mary did not know that. She assented in spite of her lack of comprehension and by doing so showcased the incredible grace of God within her. And her journey as Christ’s mother began with that surrender of her womb.
I wrestled with the emptiness of my own womb during our waiting months, and my friend’s insight helped me to see Mary as my model in a special way. Our fertility struggles, I discerned, were my call to hand over my womb to God just as Christ’s mother had done, to accept God’s will for me to bear children - or not - in his timing. Praying for the grace to do that carried me through the months of our wait, blessedly short though it turned out to be.
As I’ve moved into the current stage of my life, I’ve continued to meditate on the idea of Mary at the Annunciation as an example for our lives. All Christians are called to surrender our lives to God, but we women in a special way are called to surrender our wombs to God. This is true for all of us, no matter what our vocations. Women called to religious life must assent to not bearing children; married women on all parts of the fertility spectrum are called to assent to God’s will for us as well, whether it means we will bear a dozen children or none at all.
Read the whole article here.