Looking back to Mother’s Day this past weekend reminds me of one fact, without our moms none of us would be here. My mom has gone home to the Lord and she isn’t here to thank. I do remember the other moms in my life though, the mother of my children and the mother of our grandchildren. Moms should hold a special place in the hearts of their children. Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Let me ask you, what have you done for your mom lately? I don’t mean one Sunday out of 52. I mean every day. I realize some of us have estranged relationships with our mothers but we still need to acknowledge the fact that without them we wouldn’t be here.
Scripture, in the foundation of its structure, the Ten Commandments, instructs us to honor our parents.
Exodus 20:12, “Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the LORD your God is giving you.”
This is the fifth of the Ten Commandments and comes with the promise of long life. Why do you think it matters so much? God instituted the family and along with marriage it is the basic, foundational unit of society. Everything worth something is built on the foundation of family.
Think of the family we have. We support one another. We help one another. We are sensitive to the needs of each other. God designed us in such a way that we need family support. We need a group of close people who know us better than we know ourselves sometimes. This is a necessary element to living a long and healthy life. When we maintain the family unit, in the way God designed, we live in a way that honors God.
What happens when families experience events that stress and break it? God’s desire is that we would not experience those things, but selfishness takes control and we do not follow God’s plan. We all have a choice and too many times we choose what makes us happy, not what honors God. That is called sin. Sin has consequences that affect everyone around us. When we elevate our wants above others we run into problems.
I say all this to help us understand that the demise of the family that God designed has happened because we have chosen to follow something other than God. We are in this situation because of the choices we make in spite of the efforts of others, especially our mothers.
For the most part it is the wife/mother that sacrifices the most for her family. I know this is not true in all situations, but it is true in most. I believe there are more single mothers trying to raise their children. I am not dumping on dads just making an observation. I know when it came time to care for me my mother sacrificed everything she had to provide for my sisters and I. I am sure it would have been easier if my father had stayed around and sacrificed even a little.
What can we learn from this example? We can learn to put the needs of others above ours. We can learn that every effort should be made to maintain the family unit and follow God’s direction. We can make a commitment to change the way we think about others.
I would encourage you to follow the example of Mary, the mother of Jesus. She had many reasons to say no to God. She had her reputation to think of. She was engaged to Joseph and what would he think. She was just a young girl, who would believe such a story. Scripture records the conversation for us.
Luke 2:26-38 In the sixth month, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.”
Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God. You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end.”
“How will this be,” Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin?”
The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be barren is in her sixth month. For nothing is impossible with God.”
“I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May it be to me as you have said.” Then the angel left her.
Despite all the challenges she responded in a way that would honor God. She turned her life over to God and followed His will. She would endure so much in her life including watching Jesus die on a cross.
But remember even as Jesus hung on the cross, he honored his mother. In that time the first-born son was responsible for the care and provision for his mother. Even in his pain and suffering Jesus didn’t forget the importance of family. He turned to his disciple John and left Mary in his care.
John 19:25-27; Standing near the cross were Jesus’ mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary (the wife of Clopas), and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother standing there beside the disciple he loved, he said to her, “Dear woman, here is your son.” And he said to this disciple, “Here is your mother.” And from then on this disciple took her into his home.
Mary was willing to sacrifice everything for God, are we?
We can learn a lot from those who sacrifice their wellbeing for the benefit of others. Think of those people who have made an impact on your life. Most of them have given more than they received. As we remember those who have given so much let us try to do the same.