Sermon: We Celebrate Mothers!
Scripture: Proverbs 31: 10 – 31
This morning we celebrate mothers, this our special Mother’s Day! We read in our Proverbs passage a description of a very good mother, one who exhibits many fine and worthwhile characteristics like strength and dignity, wisdom and kindness, a woman who isn’t idle, and whose husband and children praise and call her blessed. What a tribute! “Her children arise and call her blessed,” and I think, “Well, I haven’t heard my kids say that!” But I do know that my kids appreciate me and that they love me, and they know that I love them back, so there we go – it is a blessed relationship.
The act of companionship between a mother and her family is huge. “Camaraderie” is a word you don’t hear very often, but it means comrades, friends, loving and loyal companionship, and this word “camaraderie” describes the ideal relationship a mother has with her family. Teamwork is important, and when we read our Proverbs scripture passage, the mother is described as “setting about her work vigorously, her arms strong for her tasks,” “she has no fear for her household, for all of them are clothed,” “her husband has full confidence in her” and “is respected at the city gate,” “she does not eat the bread of idleness,” “she opens her arms to the poor and extends her hands to the needy,” “she considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings she plants a vineyard,” and “she sees that her trading is profitable.” Here we see an industrious woman who puts her family’s welfare first, a mother who uses her God-given talents for the good of herself, her children and her husband. Most mothers today do the very same thing. And many people play a mothering role whether they have their own biological children or not. We mothers/ grandmothers/ surrogate mothers today are hard-working, industrious opportunists! We use our time wisely and we look out for the welfare of our families.
Four-year-old Johnny comes home with a baby chick, and his Dad says: “Johnny, take that chick right back to its mother!” “It has no mother,” says Johnny. “Well, take it back to its father,” says Dad. Johnny says: “It hasn’t got a Daddy, either! It only has an old lamp!” An electrical lamp in a box to hatch the eggs! Talk about a surrogate mother! The lamp will keep the chick warm, but it isn’t the same as a mother hen’s soft, warm feathers! And we mothers enfold and comfort and keep our “chicks” warm and sheltered, too, with our love and nurturing. “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem,” says Jesus, “how often I have longed to gather your children together as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings.” Our Parent God enfolds us in its divine, warm love which hovers over us, concerned with our welfare and our safe-keeping.
Our Proverbs scripture reading also tells us: “A woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. Give her the reward she has earned, and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.” To “fear” or revere God and conscientiously seek godliness in all our ways, is to live a Godly life, a holy life. When we seek this godliness, our mothering natures are blessed with a righteousness and a divine grace. The qualities of a godly woman are easily recognized and admired generation after generation. Godly mothers influence and nurture by deed and demonstration. We fulfil our mothering role the very best way we can through the power of God in our lives. We teach about God’s love and compassion, mercy and forgiveness, God’s salvation in Jesus God’s Son, and the everlasting life promised to us. We share our faith and pass it on, like a torch, throughout the generations. Influential people throughout history give credit time and time again to the positive, lasting influence gleaned from their mothers and their faith passed on to them. “She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue.” A mother’s teaching affects their families and influences their children profoundly.
Listen to a list of ten things a mother would never say. Have you ever heard your mother say:
We are never likely to hear our mothers say such things, and it’s no surprise!
In closing, the great unsung job of mothers is to get our children to behave like responsible, reasonable human beings. And it’s not easy! Mark Twain said: “My mother had a great deal of trouble with me, but I think she enjoyed it!”
To all mothers and all nurturing, mothering souls: God bless you!
May we love and respect them, sing their praises, and never take them for granted!
God, we thank you for our mothers! Amen.
HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!