Some mothers look forward each year to gifts, cards, phone calls or other expressions of appreciation, while others, though they may not say so, are disappointed year after year as their sacrificial love and efforts go seemingly unnoticed. With the threat of covid-19 still imposing isolation and social distancing, who knows what Mother’s Day celebrations will look like this year? Whether yours is over the top or not so great, I’d like to share with you a few thoughts on the subject.
First of all, God honors mothers. How happy our Mother’s Day would be if we could grasp the meaning of those three words: “God honors mothers.” He made it plain when He gave the first commandment with a promise, “Honor your father and your mother, so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.” Jesus made the message plainer still when He soundly rebuked as hypocrites those who broke the command, so they could ignore the needs of their parents. Plainest of all is the honor Jesus bestowed on Mary when He was hanging on the cross and at the point of death: “When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to her, “Woman, here is your son,” and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” From that time on, this disciple took her into his home” (John 19: 26-27). God doesn’t require anything of us that He Himself doesn’t do: God honors mothers. And just so we know what that means, here are some biblical definitions of the word “honor”: to glorify or make glorious; to prize, revere, value or esteem. Go ahead, choose the one you like, and celebrate what God thinks of you!
Another thought comes from Isaiah 49: 15-16…
Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you! See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands.
What a beautiful picture of motherhood and the mother heart of God! Nurturing and compassionate, attentive to the point of being unable to forget her baby: that is how God sees mothers, and that is how He wants us to see Him. In fact, just like God is the best father, in this vivid metaphor He reveals that He is also the best mother. He invented motherhood, and all the good and godly qualities of a mother come from Him . We portray His image as His heart beats with ours in love and concern for our children.
My final thought for Mother’s Day is a word of caution to us all: Looking to motherhood to gain significance, value, or fulfillment in life is a sure way to find disappointment and disillusionment, not to mention unhappy family relationships. Children, regardless of age, can’t bear the burden of expectations that only Jesus can fill.
So, dear mother, I pass these thoughts on to you with an invitation to join me in celebrating (alone, if need be) the gift of motherhood. From God’s heart to mine to yours, Happy Mother’s Day with Honor!