Q: Who are the only two people in the history of the world who didn’t have a belly button?
A: Adam and Eve.
They weren’t born. They were created. They were never tethered to their mother by an umbilical cord and therefore they didn’t have belly buttons.
For an unborn baby, the umbilical cord is its lifeline. Through it, the baby receives nutrient-rich, oxygenated blood from its mother. Simply put, without the umbilical cord, the baby will die in the womb. If the cord is severed, the baby cannot receive the nutrients and oxygen it needs to survive.
As we prepare to celebrate Mother’s Day, I thank God for umbilical cords. They are just one of the countless wonders of God’s created world.
There is another type of umbilical cord, however, for which I thank God.
In my years of ministry, I have come across numerous families in which mom and dad have dropped the ball. They don’t take seriously the tremendous responsibility God has given them to nurture and care for their child’s soul. They don’t see the need to bring their kids to church. They don’t teach them to pray. They don’t show them what it means to love God and be loved by him.
So grandma quietly steps in. When she is with the children she teaches them to pray. When they visit, she takes them to church and Sunday School. She reads Bible stories to them and reminds them often of what Jesus did to save them. She is their umbilical cord. She is the lifeline connecting them to Jesus.
Many Christians can trace their faith back to one person from their childhood who cared enough to keep them connected to God. One person who made sure they went to church. One person who prayed with them at meals and before they went to bed. One person who understood the eternal consequences of their words and actions.
Maybe it was mom or dad. Maybe it was a grandma or grandpa. Maybe it was a neighbor or a pastor. Whoever it was, thank God for umbilical cords. Through them, God feeds and nurtures our souls. Through them, he leads us to Jesus.
Could you be an umbilical cord? I’ll be honest. It’s not easy. It gets complicated when mom and dad don’t step up. Oftentimes there isn’t much we can do. But if you know a child – a grandson or granddaughter, a niece or a neighbor – whose parents don’t see the importance of connecting their child to Christ, God may be calling you to be their lifeline.
Pray about it. Encourage mom and dad to be the lifeline their child needs. If they don’t step up, however, you may be their only connection to Jesus. Never forget the eternal implications of what you are doing. Their souls may depend on you having the courage and taking the time to connect them to their Savior.
This Mother’s Day, take a moment to look at your belly button. Then thank God for umbilical cords. Thank him for the lifeline which connected you to your mother. Even more importantly, thank him for those people who’ve connected you and others to Jesus.