“And the woman conceived, and bare a son: and when she saw him that he was a goodly child, she hid him three months…and the woman took the child, and nursed it. And the child grew, and she brought him unto Pharaoh’s daughter, and he became her son….”
Exodus 2: 2, 9, 10
King James Version
“Jochebed – A Mother’s Strength”
“There are people fond of saying that women are the weaker vessels. I don’t believe it! Physically they may be, but spiritually, morally, religiously and in faith, what man can match a woman who is really convinced?”
Joseph F. Smith
As a woman, what areas of strength do I feel God has implanted in me?
“We are women, and my plea is, ‘Let me be a woman, holy through and through, asking for nothing but what God wants to give me, receiving with both hands and with all my heart whatever that is.’”
“A woman is like a teabag. It’s only when she’s in hot water that you realize how strong she is.”
My grandfather was what used to be called, “a small-town doctor.” I can’t tell you how many times, when I was visiting my grandparents, that a patient would call grandpa and grandma’s house (yes, they had a listed phone number) and grandpa would grab his medical bag and hop in the car, sometimes driving very dangerous dirt roads out into the desert to some remote house where he’d deliver a baby or load a sick patient into the backseat of his car and take them to the hospital.
Everyone in town not only knew “Doc,” but loved him as well. He was part of the family – in some cases delivering three generations of babies. So it wasn’t surprising that when a patient got into a personal problem, they were just as quick to bring their dilemma to grandpa.
Years ago, when grandpa first opened his office, it didn’t take long before young girls, who were unmarried and pregnant, would be brought by their families to him with the question, “What are we to do?”’
Firm believers in the gift of life, my grandparents decided to open their home to girls who were “in trouble.” Over time, my grandmother was able to set up a network of relationships with organizations around the country who arranged for babies to be adopted if this was what the “birth mothers” chose. I’ll never forget being at my grandparents one summer when a young woman, only 5 years older that I was decided to live at grandpa and grandma’s house until her baby was delivered and adopted. One day this young woman called me into the cheery bedroom grandma had for her. She was sitting in a rocking chair knitting a pair of baby booties. As I watched, I remember how sad I felt. She must have noticed the look on my face for she smiled and said, “These are to be a gift for my baby. I hope that someday my child will look at these and know I really loved them and made a tough decision based on what I believed was best for their life and their future.” My reaction to her words was to think to myself, “What a strong girl!” For to be very honest, I don’t know if I would have had the strength she had to give up a child I loved as much as I believed she loved her baby.
We see this same strength exhibited in the life of Jochebed, Moses’ mother. Knowing that her little baby boy faced certain death if found by Pharaoh’s soldiers, Jochebed had the strength to let another woman raise her child in order to protect him from the murderous hands of an Egyptian ruler.
Jochebed wasn’t just Moses’ life-giver – the mother who carried him inside herself for 9 months –she was also the woman who was his life-protector. Moses had a future because of a mother who had the strength to give him a future. In the case of Jochebed, this wasn’t just a mother who delivered a baby and then laid him in another’s hands. For the Bible says, Jochebed nursed this child.
As I have thought about the unselfish strength Jochebed exhibited, I’ve asked myself, “For the sake of my child, could I do what this woman of God did to give her son a future?”
Some historical legends about Moses infer that he was a very beautiful and very special child and that Jochebed recognized this fact the moment he was born. Maybe, down deep inside, this mother – this Godly woman – sensed that at last, the deliverer of God’s people had arrived and this was part of the reason she used all her God-given strength to save her child and see that he had the opportunity to be all God wanted him to be.
The Psalmist David wrote: “The Lord is the stronghold of my life.” I can imagine Jochebed relying on the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob as she mustered all her strength and laid her precious child in the arms of an Egyptian princess, trusting that the God of her ancestors would protect her son wherever his life’s journey took him.
Jochebed understood that, “I can do everything through Him who gives me strength.”
Philippians 4: 13
PRAYER FOR MY CHILDREN
“Thank You, Father, for the gift of children. They are a delight and a joy. They teach us much about Your unconditional love and acceptance.
I pray that as my children grow older they will also grow in their desire to seek after You. I pray that they would hunger and thirst for You and that the hunger and thirst would not be quenched until they have an intimate love relationship with Jesus Christ. Please develop in them a bright light that others may see. May their lives touch hundreds of others because of their love for You and a desire to glorify You. I pray that You would bind Satan from their lives and give them the power and strength to resist temptation. Please bless them with Your wisdom and guidance. I pray that they would marry a mate who truly loves You and desires to honor You. Gracious Father, please be with them and strengthen them through the rough bumpy roads as well as the smooth ones. May they see Your hand daily and experience the peace that can only come from You.
Please guide me daily so that I can be a Christlike example for them. Help me to impart Your wisdom and love to them. Please give me patience and understanding when I do not feel I have it to give. Keep a humble heart in me. O Lord. Please give me the discernment to know when I should ask for forgiveness from them. Help me to be the parent you want me to be so that they can be all you desire them to be.
In Your Blessed Name.”
Dorothy Valcarcel, Author
When A Woman Meets Jesus