Mary had the advantage of being "full of grace", but she was still faced with difficulties. Right from the start, her very pregnancy put her in a precarious position where she could easily have been stoned to death. Yet she accepted God's mission and chose life. She responded with Love.
That might seem strange to us in an age where mothers regularly murder their children for reasons that range from convenience to gender preference, yet there are still mothers who choose life. It takes a real woman to respond with Love.
My own neighbor was faced with a surprise pregnancy. She had one son--seventeen. Yet, faced with great inconvenience and sacrifice, she and her husband bravely took on a world of diapers and midnight feedings. She's a real woman. She responded with Love.
Just look at the comments on internet stories, and you can see judgement, sneers, and hate. Newspapers and magazines specialize and profit from embarrassing and accusing, usually without facts, but always without compassion or tact. Yet there is a woman who sends out suggestions for helping people--Debbie Tenzer of Do One Nice Thing. The world is full of bad things, but Debbie is a real woman. She responded with Love.
Everywhere, mothers (and fathers) watch as their children and spouses head off to foreign shores to perform their duty for the US Military, often in dangerous situations. Some got together and formed MOMS of Military Prayer and Support Group to support troops and give advice to other military parents.These are real women. They responded with Love.
Every mother who stands by her child during tough times, from drug problems to prison terms, exhibits the feminine strength that defines us as women. Mothers with Sons in Prison offers emotional support and spiritual encouragement to mothers enduring this nightmare. It was founded by Lynn Hamilton from her personal experience. Lynn is a real woman. She responded with Love.
I can't imagine anything more terrible than losing a child. It would be easy to let pain and anger rule the brokenness. But there are mothers out there who banded together to offer support to other mothers who have lost their children. They are Angel Moms. These are real women. They responded with Love.
God is Love, and his mother, who was "blessed among woman" responded with that same Love. Following her example of quiet strength and Love will put us on on the road to become real women ourselves. But don't be intimidated. There are plenty of examples of real women. Use them as your role models, and respond with Love.
I'd love to know how you responded with love. Share your example!