Mother’s Day Is …

Before getting into what Mother’s Day is, we should look at what this holiday is not.

Mother’s Day is not in the Bible.

We can find verses where mothers are recognized. Proverbs 31 states that the children of a godly woman will “arise and call her blessed.” The Apostle Paul called attention to the contribution of Timothy’s mother & grandmother in his life (2 Tim. 1:5). And, we can find verses in the Bible about honoring our parents which goes beyond verbal recognition and certainly extends beyond what is done on one special day (Ex. 20:12; Matt. 15:4-6; Eph. 6:1-3). But, Scripture does not command us, or even suggest, that we set aside a special day to do so. Consequently, this is a holiday about which we must develop personal convictions for celebrating it and we must also respect others for their opinions about it. Let’s apply Romans 14:5-8 to Mother’s Day.

Mother's Day
(Click to enlarge in Pinterest & repin.)

Now let’s consider what Mother’s Day is . . .

Mother’s Day is a day to celebrate motherhood.

God created women as the ones to bear children. But, there is more that goes into being a parent than biology such as nurturing and teaching them. Consequently, on mother’s day we also celebrate those who have adopted, caring for and loving the child as one’s own. In celebrating motherhood we thereby honor God’s design. Let’s be sure to direct praise to Him, not just to the mothers among us.

Mother’s day is a time to make moms feel special.

Motherhood is an awesome responsibility that isn’t easy. Sometimes moms can use a reminder of how worthwhile it is to be a mom. Let’s get beyond the casual greetings to sharing how they have made a positive impact in our lives so “she who gave you birth be joyful!” (Prov. 23:25).

Mother’s Day is merely one day to honor our mothers.

The Ten Commandments include that we are to honor our mothers and fathers (Ex. 20:12), a command which Jesus reinforced (Matt. 15:4-6). Ephesians 6:1-3 instructs us to both honor and obey them. All of these commands fail to provide any time reference, meaning that we should honor them all of our days, not just on Mother’s Day. Let’s use Mother’s Day as a reminder for how we should treat them throughout the year.

Mother’s Day is hard for those whose mothers have not followed God’s design.

Not all mothers provide their children with the caring nurture and love God intends. Some mothers abandon, neglect, or abuse their children. Mother’s Day serves as a negative reminder for those who have suffered because of the mother they had. They are not able to “arise and call her blessed” (Prov. 31:28). As followers of Christ, we need to work through our past to get to the point where we can extend forgiveness, just as Jesus forgave those who put Him on the cross, but Mother’s Day will undoubtedly still be difficult. Remember that Proverbs 31 refers to the mothers of “noble character” (Prov. 31:10). Let’s not judge people who struggle on this day but instead be compassionate and understanding.

Mother’s Day is a day to remember mothers who are no longer with us.

Many will only have memories on this holiday. Especially for those with a recent loss, but even for those whose mother died years ago, this holiday can stir up grief all over again. Some might even feel guilty, regretting that they didn’t take the time to express their love and appreciation while their mother still lived. Let’s be aware of those around us who need some comfort.

Mother’s Day is a time to be sensitive.

As already noted, not everyone’s mother is still living. Not everyone has a good mother. Some want to be mothers and can’t. While we might want to use this holiday to celebrate motherhood in the church, let’s do it in a way that is respectful and encouraging to all.

Also See: Mother’s Day Resources

7 Replies to “Mother’s Day Is …”

  1. Any advise for us with mothers who “abandon, neglect, or abuse” to get to the point of being able to forgive them?

  2. I know this response is coming after Mother’s Day, but maybe it will bring some help and comfort to someone. My mother married when she was only 16 yrs. old, she gave birth to my brother first, and then I was born in 1943. Our father caught Pneumonia and died when I was two years old. We had to pack up and move back with our Grand-mother and receive survivors benefits from the Government to make ends meet.
    In time, when I was six years old, my mother met another man she thought would marry her, but when she became pregnant, he decided that would be too much of a burden for him so he went on his way. So now there were three of us children with no father figure in the home.
    Later, when I was eight years old my Mother met another man who she fell in love with and she had a son for him. They later married, but he never wanted her other children. It was hell in our home because of the obvious differences made in the we children and his son. When I started to develop my breast and become a young lady he began to make advances toward me. I eventually ran away from home because she did not believe me and would whip me with various objects. My reason for telling this is that these type behaviors can become generational, I married at 15 yrs. old and my mother was not ready to be a grandmother, and I picked a boy to marry just to get away from her and my stepfather.
    I only had her and my stepfather as role models for parents and family. I began to repeat everything my mother did because this was all I had ever seen modeled. It was not good what I knew, but it was all I knew. Thank God I eventually met some Christian women from a Church and they took me under their care. On Mother’s Day I usually stay at home because I am not healed enough yet to go to Church on that Day. Many Churches gloat over people that were just Blessed to be born into stable situations, and as a result people are encouraged to look down on others who were not that fortunate. However; God Loves All Of His Mothers, even those that never were taught how to be mothers. Read the Bible, some of those used by God, were not good parents; but God loved they anyway. Look to Jesus to heal your soul so you can stop this hurt from continuing to the next generation, and the next; it has to stop with you!!! It will take time but with God’s help, we can stop this negative behavior even if we have to do it without the Good Church people; some who have outside children they never even mention. (Remember my other brother, his father became a Pastor; but my brother drank himself to death because his father’s wife did not want him around her nice clean church family). If we do not seek Jesus for healing this hurt will continue going down through generations.

    • Thank you, Anita, for sharing how it is possible, with God’s help, to break the cycle. How good that some women from a church took you under their care. What a blessing from God! I think of the Apostle Paul’s words to the Philippians — “being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” (Phil. 1:6)

  3. My niece and nephew were removed from abusive parents two years ago. They live with my mother and I help, as much as possible. I have a child of my own and she enjoys celebrating and honoring her parents. However, we have been hushed about this celebration in the last couple of years, as we have been with my family on those holidays. I agree with being considerate but when do we teach the children to live in this world, as they will always encounter these holidays thru school and church?

    • I can see why you are “Respectfully Torn” with these holidays and the realities of life. Being considerate does not mean living in denial. How you approach these holidays is what truly matters. More than ignoring realities, I believe helping them have a healthy perspective is key. God has given them people to surround them who do love them and care for them. Lead them in celebrating that … just as your own child has you to care for her and wants to celebrate and honor you. More than focus on the biological aspect, if you express thanks and appreciation to your parents for loving and caring for you and your child did the same with you, it shifts the attention. Honestly answer questions they may have about their own parents in accordance with their age level abilities and understanding but keep taking the focus back to how they are still special to God and to all of you. It would be better that they can air their questions and hurts with family than to hear distortions through friends or others.

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