Jochebed. The mother of Aaron, Moses, and Miriam, three hugely influential people in the history of Israel. "There was Moses, who became one of the greatest national leaders and legislators the world has ever known. There was Aaron, who became Israel’s first high priest and the founder of the Aaronic priesthood. There was Miriam, the gifted poetess and musician, who was intimately associated with her two brothers in the history of Israel." (Bible Gateway on Jochebed)
Let’s read: Exodus 1-2 (read it online here) If you have the time, I'd recommend reading the entire book of Exodus if you can! I know it's long but if you haven't read it before, it will give you a full context of Jochebed's life and legacy.
Unlike Eve, whose life is well-documented in the story of the creation and the fall, Jochebed is mentioned infrequently in her own story. Her name is mentioned very few times in scripture (which can be read here), and compared to the stories of her children, her live's role would appear quite small.
Mothers often go unnoticed in histories. The mothers of great men and women -- though we know their children's names and stories -- fade into the background. But that's okay. Because the life of a mother is not one of selfish ambition, it is one of selfless giving. Of pouring everything in our hearts, minds, spirits, and souls into raising our children in the way that we believe is right. (Granted, mothers also require time to themselves to recharge, refresh, build our own relationships, and pursue our own passions -- and this is most definitely not to say anything of the contrary.) My goal as a mother isn't just to get through each day (although it is sometimes a struggle), my ultimate goal is to raise Lily to love God and love others. And my life will be spent fighting for this goal.
As we can see in Moses' character, Jochebed poured her heart into raising Moses in the way she believed was right. Exodus 2:7-10 reminds us that, though she initially gave Moses up in able to save him from Pharaoh's decree, she was blessed with the opportunity to nurse him and raise him for a short while. "Then his sister said to Pharaoh’s daughter, “Shall I go and get you a nurse from the Hebrew women to nurse the child for you?” Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, “Yes.” So the girl went and called the child’s mother. Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, “Take this child and nurse it for me, and I will give you your wages.” So the woman took the child and nursed it. When the child grew up, she brought him to Pharaoh’s daughter, and she took him as her son. She named him Moses, “because,” she said, “I drew him out of the water.”
Her heroic actions brought about the Exodus. And while she didn't see these changes come about in her own lifetime, she choices she made as a mother impacted the world as we know it.
How do we see ourselves in Jochebed?
What verse or passage stood out to you the most in this week's reading? Why?
RESOURCES FOR THIS WEEK'S TOPIC
- Bible Gateway Profile: Jochebed
- Grace To You: Jochebed