Good morning! And let me say again, “Thank you, mom! God bless you for all you have done for us.” Every woman is equally precious in God’s eyes, yes? But it’s also true that not every woman is a mother. However, every one of us had a mom, so Mother’s Day is relevant to us all. Would you agree? Let’s begin by giving a standing ovation before God for our mothers. Thank you, mom! And thank you God for all they have done for us.
Satan hates it when we do that! He hates families. He hates men who love and respect their mothers and the mothers of their children. He hates children who honor their parents. But most of all Satan hates moms! It should come as no surprise to us that moms and the glory of motherhood have taken such a beating in recent years.
Satan and his hoard of demons are still doing their best to belittle the holiness of marriage, abolish the honor of motherhood and destroy the sanctity of a mother’s womb.
But not everyone is buying his nonsense. A fifth grade teacher discovered this when he handed out a science test one day. The question read: “I have 6 letters, I start with an “M” and I pick things up. What am I?” The answer was magnet but half the class wrote down “Mother”!
Your mother’s voice was the first voice you ever heard. You learned to recognize it while you were still in the womb. Even as a newborn, before you could see, you knew her scent and touch and you preferred her above anyone else.
George Washington wrote. “My mother was the most beautiful woman I ever saw. All I am I owe to her. I attribute all my success in life to the moral, intellectual and physical education I received from her.”
Abraham Lincoln said, “All that I am or ever hope to be, I owe to my angel Mother.”
Billy Graham wrote, “Only God himself fully appreciates the influence of a Christian mother in molding the character of her children.”
Martin Luther taught, “When Eve was brought to Adam, he was filled with Holy Spirit and he gave her the most sanctified, the most glorious of all names. He called her Eve, which means the mother of all. He didn’t call her wife, but mother. This is her crown and it comes from God.”
When the Lord God brought his people out of slavery in Egypt (by the way a slave has no name, no heritage, no future, no personhood) he gave them a set of 10 commandments.
These commandments weren’t oppressive, slavery was oppressive! These commandments were not given to force people into conformity. That’s the definition of slavery. God gave these commandments to teach his people how to live as free people. To know right from wrong and voluntarily chose do what is right before God. That’s what it means to be free!
The first 3 commandments pertain to our relationship to God. The next six are about our relationship with each other and the first of these is this: “Honor your father and mother that you may live long in the land the LORD your God is giving you.” Ex 20:12
This is the first commandment with a promise and it’s important that we see it. Moms have been ordained by God to bring order to chaos, just like God did in the creation of the world.
A mother’s job is endless. She is protector, provider, disciplinarian and friend. She is more often than not the most selfless, loving person in our world. More often than not she sacrifices her own wants and desires to meet the needs of her children.
She raises her children with tears. She grieves their sin. Her tears are so holy the Bible says the Lord collects them in a bottle. Out of the trauma and chaos of birth, she brings warmth, security, safety. From her own body, she feeds us. She rejoices over us with singing. God created mothers to be like that. She got those gifts from her Creator and it was very good!
Mothers model and shape our world from the nursery to world government. Without her, the world would soon fall back into darkness and chaos. No wonder Satan works so hard to destroy mothers and their influence.
It’s our mothers who first teach us to love, share, serve, forgive, to trust. She is ordained by God to discipline and train us how to live. Prov 22:6 says, “Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old he will not turn from it.” Prov 22:6
Let me say again, the success of an ordered society and good government begins with mom in the home. That’s why Satan is so determined to destroy her. We see Satan’s vandalism of motherhood in what some have called the “spirit of the age”.
God has called us to fight against this for the sake of our children and grandchildren. He said, “Don’t be conformed to the world but be transformed through the renewing of your mind.” Rom 12:2 This transformation begins at our mother’s knee. No wonder the Lord commands us to “Honor your father and mother that your days may be long in the land the Lord has given you.”
To honor our mothers means to respect, obey, love, serve them – not because they’re perfect, but because God honors them and he commands us to honor them.
We all have different mother stories. Some were faithful, some were not. Some are warm and loving, some are not. Some abused and abandoned us. Moms are people. They make mistakes. They are sinners - just like their kids. Let the one without sin cast the first stone!
There is little glamour in motherhood. No promotions, no raises, few worldly benefits. But moms, what nobody else sees, God sees and he is very proud of you. One day he will reward your sacrifices, your sleepless nights, your tears, your prayers, even your failures. So never give up. Keep at it, God has ordained you to this task.
Make it your aim to grow in your faith and your relationship with Jesus. You can’t give away what you don’t have. My daughter Abby is an artist and a mother. She produced a beautiful wall hanging that says, “The Lord didn’t call me to be perfect, only that with every breath I point my children to you.”
Fathers, kids, we need to treat our mothers, our wives, and all women with great respect. The Lord calls us to pray for them and encourage them. He calls us to stand against the ‘spirit of the age’ that seeks to destroy them and generations of children yet unborn.
Last Sunday, our church led worship at our local nursing homes where I was reminded of another way Satan works to destroy and dishonor our mothers.
Too often today, mothers who gave their lives for their children are being abandoned rather than honored in their old age. Prov 23:22 says, “Listen to your father who gave you life and do not despise your mother when she is old.” Prov 23:22
As Christ Lutheran church let’s covenant together. Let’s refuse to be conformed to the ‘spirit of the age’. Let’s honor our mothers, from the youngest to the oldest. Let’s work, pray, and invest in producing the best children’s ministry in the valley. Let’s develop new and better resources to disciple young moms for the task of motherhood. Let’s make sure our grandmothers are loved and honored and respected.
God promises if we will commit ourselves to do this he will bless the desire of our hearts. Contrary to the spirit of the age, you can never hire somebody to do what only a mother can do. But the Holy Spirit can empower us to recover the honor of motherhood if we are willing.
Congregation, let’s stand together. If you are a mother or grandmother, foster mother, or stepmother still in the process of raising children in your home will you raise your hand? Keep it up! Church, let’s gather around these women, lay hands on them and pray for them.
“Heavenly Father thank you for these mothers, grandmothers. We ask you to bless them. Make them fearless in love, steadfast in patience, courageous in faith for the sake of raising their children.
We know the security of our world, our nation, our communities, our schools begins with them. Protect them from the evil one and his lies. Fill them with your Holy Spirit.
Make them your light and grace and truth among other mothers who are in need of help and encouragement. Bless husbands, fathers, grandfathers to be real shelters of love around them.
Help us our congregation to fulfill your commandment to “honor our father and mother that the days may be long in the land you have given us.
We also pray for those for whom this is not an easy day. For those who grieve the death of children. For those who grieve the death of mothers. For those who grieve mothers who were absent or abusive. We ask comfort and healing for their hearts as well. All these things we ask in the name of Jesus.