My dear sister, Danielle, shared this video with me on Facebook the other day. I laughed, eventually (after the 3rd time watching) I cried, and I reflected. This commercial captures a very paradoxical reality. The couple embarks on the exciting journey of parenthood (I remember this day oh so vividly – slightly nervous about the unknown, yet overwhelmed with joy and excitement about the, well, unknown.). Then they quickly come to realize nothing in their life could’ve prepared them for something so challenging, so exhausting, and yet so beautiful. In one article I read by Jeff Beer, he relates to the commercial writing, “Individually, these moments can appear terrible and make you wonder how and why humans have kept on making more humans.” This made me wonder, how many people would watch this video and find themselves puzzled as to why the couple’s expression goes from overwhelmed and turns into complete elation after realizing number two was on the way at the very end. As a single person, majority of the time I was mostly overly anxious to begin the adventures of parenthood, but there were a few moments when witnessing complete chaos that I thought, “Oh yeah, I could wait…” Perhaps at the time those thoughts were helpful because I obviously was not ready to embark on that journey (though no one ever really is).
The reality, however, is that I was never going to fully grasp the magnanimity of the joy of bringing life into the world without experiencing it first. This is probably an incredibly obvious statement, but you see, I think there are tons of people out there who look at those individual moments and think, “I am too selfish for that” or “I can not handle that much responsibility or chaos.” I think at different points in our lives most of us have had those thoughts once or twice. Maybe you are a parent and you still have those thoughts from time to time. However, the reason LIFE carries with it pure elation is because we know (as it is written on our hearts) that our true purpose is not to live for ourselves at all, but to live for the other. Complete selflessness.
This is the same path our Savior chose to take when He came to redeem us and He did it with perfect intentionality. Mary found out she was pregnant. I imagine she had a moment of fear or doubt of her ability, but then was overtaken with JOY. Joy overtakes us because laying down our lives for another is our path to holiness, sanctity, HEAVEN! I think this video captures that reality. We are called to lay down our lives and give life to others. This is parenthood. It is why it is such a HUGE undertaking, but the paradox lies in the fact that in giving of your life, you are given a greater life; a life full of purpose, meaning, and ultimately redemption.
Were Cory and I a little scared with the realization of our second child? Uh, YEUP! I mean, the two will only be 17 months apart people…but were we immediately overcome with pure elation when we realized how much more joy and life our home will have because of this HUGE gift?! HECKS YEAH! There was another statement by Beer that I feel adequately sums up the video, “After all the screams, stains, and sleeplessness, the spot also artfully illustrates how the cumulative effect of all this chaos is actually, and somewhat inexplicably, love and joy.”
Not sure how any of this has anything to do with Coca-Cola, but they certainly got my attention. To those of you who are fearful of the idea of children or MORE children, I get it. Who would knowingly make their lives uncomfortable, messy, and overwhelming?
unless it meant experiencing the greatest gift God could ever bestow upon us all. LIFE.