A Prayer for the Childless Mother

For the childless mother, I pray–
For the women who bounce babies
That are not their own.
For the women who wipe little noses
And kiss scraped knees–
Who love and nurture and soothe,
Who educate and instigate
And encourage and embrace
The children she could never have.

For the childless mother, I pray–
For the women who love broader
Than family trees and blood lines can define.
Who see the hope of the future
In hopeful little eyes and faces
And would sacrifice to give those little souls
Everything they need
To carry us all into the future.

For the childless mother, I pray–
For her heart to be fulfilled
By the love she shows another’s child,
For her soul to leap and dance with joy
For all the children that she has helped to raise.

Give her peace.
Give her joy.
Give her the assurance her soul craves.
Give her love.
Give her happiness.
Give her wisdom.

Whatever her name:

Aunt,
Cousin,
Friend,
Neighbor,
Sister,
Daughter,

Let her know, dear Lord,
That she is defined not by the children she never bore
But by the way she chose to love

All of God’s children.

Amen.

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