From the artist: “The Wonder” is a song chronicling my struggles and joys as a mom, and how this journey has caused me to cling to the cross and marvel at God’s kindness. Verse by verse, the song explores three wonders I’ve found in motherhood: God’s goodness in the gift of children, the beauty of the gospel when our sin is exposed, and the comfort we find in God’s sovereign care. My prayer is that this song will meet you in your own journey today and point you to the good news of Jesus as Mother’s Day approaches.
Verse 1: The Wonder of God’s Good Gift
Little fingers they run
Through my hair
A tiny head on my shoulder
When you reach for my hand
Just to know I’m there
The things I’ll miss when you’re older
But in the rush of the day
How I turn away
How I forget the wonder
I forget the grace
And the giving of thanks
For the weight of the love that I’m under
Oh the wonder...
I wrote the first verse of “The Wonder” when my oldest was just a toddler. Knee-deep in diapers and cutting food into tiny pieces, dealing with meltdowns and nap refusals, I’ll be the first to admit that the days felt more mundane than miraculous. And yet, there were moments when the sacredness of it all would hit me, my heart awake to the goodness of God in the gift of my daughter.
What a wonder that the God of the universe, grand and majestic, bends low to create our children, masterfully knitting them together in the womb, writing each of their days down in his book before they were even born! Each child is fearfully and wonderfully made in the very image of God. Each little one is a miracle, entrusted to our care.
The enemy would distract us from the miracle of it all, with the noise of our smart-phones and the urgency of the day’s tasks or the juice that just spilled all over the kitchen floor. But our children, like the stars in the sky and the rest of creation, declare the glory of the Lord day after day, if only we’d stop to see.
So, watch them dance and make a mess and stop to delight in the smallest flower, and then turn and marvel at the Maker. Feel the ache of your love for them, even on the hard days, and remember it’s a shadow of the deeper, wider, longer love God bestows on us in Christ. Stand amazed at our good God as you consider the wonder and gift of motherhood.
But even as we wonder at the beauty of motherhood, we know it comes with brokenness too. Being a mom has a way of uncovering our sin and our need for a Savior.
Verse 2: The Wonder of the Gospel
When my temper is short
And the day is long
And my words come out in anger
And I tell you I’m sorry
But the moment’s gone
I’m so heavy with my failure
But let me tell you darlin’
Where your mama she is running
To the cross (oh what a wonder!)
All my love, just a shadow
Pointing on to the hallowed
To what’s deeper, wider, longer
Oh, oh, oh the wonder…
The second verse of “The Wonder” came four years and two kids later, when I was just beginning to come out of what I call my “pressure cooker” years. With three young kids at home, the stress and the heat of the everyday caused my sin to bubble to the surface again and again. I especially struggled with my temper, angry when things felt out of my control or when my agenda was interrupted. And then I struggled with the resulting shame, my failures weighing heavy as I wallowed in all the ways I was not making the grade as a mom. Sometimes, I’d pull up my bootstraps with an “I’ll try harder, I’ll be better” attitude, but it was only a matter of time before my sin bubbled out again.
In his kindness, God showed me the gospel frees us from both self-condemnation and self-reliance in motherhood. As we see our sin, we repent but we need not wallow in shame, for there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ. The gospel also releases us from striving in our own strength to be “enough” as a mom. We are not enough, but Jesus is more than enough. And by grace, he credited his “enough” to our account. We walk in motherhood by grace through faith in Jesus, who met every standard perfectly.
So we cast self-condemnation and self-reliance aside, and we run headlong to the wonder of the cross instead. And we do it again and again, inviting our children to do the same, until at last we see him face to face and the presence of sin and death passes away forever.
Verse 3: The Wonder of God’s Sovereignty and Our Stewardship
When my hair is gray, and my words get slow
And my days are almost over
And I whisper to you, “how I love you so”
I hope you never had to wonder
And you know, my child
You’ve never been only mine
Though I wish I could hold you longer
Though I leave you, He is near
He will wipe away your tears
You’re so loved by God the Father
Oh, oh the wonder…
In the third verse of the song, I look ahead to the end of my parenting story. When I think of the future, I have so many questions: Will something I’ve done mess my kids up forever? What about the hard things I can’t protect them from? Will they know that I love them? In all of these questions, I take comfort in the sovereignty of God and his care for my kids.
As moms, we have a great responsibility to ground our children in love and in the good news of the gospel. We’re called to disciple them so that they may flourish and grow in Christ. But ultimately, our kids don’t belong to us. Our children belong to God, the Heavenly Father. We’re merely stewards. And this truth should lead us to awe-filled wonder: the God of the universe, who is sovereign and good, loves our children more than we could ever imagine!
As deep as our love is for our children, He loves them more than we do. When we release them to school for the first time or when they head away to college, we can entrust them to the one who is writing their story. If they stray or rebel in their teenage years, we can pray to the one who pursues the prodigal with a relentless love. Even when we fall short as parents, we can entrust them to the one who wastes nothing and, in the mystery of his sovereignty, can redeem even our parenting fails for his glory. And when in death we say goodbye to them, we take comfort knowing that we leave them in the hands of the one who is ever-present and ever-faithful.
So, as Mothers’ Day approaches, let’s marvel at the gift of motherhood, the goodness of the gospel, and the beauty of God’s sovereign care. Oh, the wonder!
In 2011, Caroline Cobb gave herself a goal to write a song for every book of the Bible in a year. That year of writing set in motion a new passion to tell the stories of scripture through music, faithfully and creatively. Caroline’s latest album, a Home & a Hunger: Songs of Kingdom Hope, explores the tension between the "already" and "not yet." Produced by Gabe Scott (Andrew Peterson, David Crowder), and featuring Shane Barnard and Jill Phillips, the album traces the biblical themes of Eden and exile, restlessness and rest, and God's "upside-down" kingdom. Her last album, the Blood + the Breath: Songs that Tell the Story of Redemption, takes the listener on a journey through redemptive history with each song parachuting into a different biblical scene. Caroline has been compared to Ellie Holcomb, John Mark McMillan, Sandra McCracken, and Rich Mullins. She and her husband Nick live in Dallas, TX with their three young kids (Ellie, Harrison, and Libby).
2 Corinthians 5:21
Ephesians 2:8-9, Hebrews 4:15