Motherhood, Lest We Forget
I am not against mothers or Mother’s Day. But we should be careful, for we often fall into a commercial routine, put a religious spin on it, and then wander away thinking we’ve done this great, uplifting thing, never realizing the pain we may have caused. Curious? Then read on.
Mother’s Day is about honoring mothers. But would Jesus have supported such a day if it’s simply about being a female birth parent? I don’t think so. (Please don’t egg my house.) For many, becoming a “mother” is not difficult nor taken seriously. But what about Motherhood?
Motherhood is that quality of a woman in a position of authority characterized by acts of love, guidance, nourishment, and caring. Jesus would go for that, especially since it’s not arbitrarily exclusive. If a woman lives and acts in that manner, she takes on the quality of Motherhood.
Jesus never excludes anyone, so why do we?
But often we ask mothers to stand, applaud their status, and tell them they are special…excluding those who are married and can’t have children, have never married, have chosen not to have children, or whose children have died. All without a thought of the hurt, sadness, and despair we cause.
I know this is true. I watch the faces look down and turn away. I see the light leave their eyes as they struggle through the “celebration”. And I notice the vacant seats of those who just can’t take it emotionally and never come to God’s house on Mother’s Day.
These women may sing in the choir or teach young children, serve the youth or help the seniors. They may be married or single, have a child or have none. And they should never be excluded…never treated less worthy than others…and never, ever be left feeling so helplessly alone.
Christian Motherhood is about more than mothers.
When my wife’s Aunt Ruth died, I learned what Christian Motherhood was all about. The church was filled with men, women, boys and girls. One man said, “Miss Ruth taught me in Sunday School.” A young boy replied, “Me, too!” Others nodded. Many shared stories of Miss Ruth as others waited to tell their own.
And it all became clear. Miss Ruth took her faith seriously and had put it into practice by loving, encouraging, guiding, nourishing, and caring for all these people. Though she never had children of her own, she definitely had children…and grandchildren and great-grandchildren. And they loved her.
This Mother’s Day, do remember your mother, but don’t forget these other wonderful Godly women. They are every bit a part of the Christian Motherhood. And say a prayer for them. For many, it is a difficult day. And on top of it all, they have to put up with those of us who sometimes forget.
To every woman in the Christian Motherhood, we love you!
Chuck Graham is Founder and Executive Director of Ciloa, an international ministry devoted to encouraging others and teaching them how to encourage one another. He is also an author and speaker. Chuck and his wife, Beverly, live in Lawrenceville, Georgia, USA. Learn more about Chuck and Ciloa at www.Ciloa.org.
Pictures: Banner: Elderly Woman Caring For The Young by Dmitry Berkut, iStock. 1st: Caregiver by Monkey Business Images, Shutterstock. 2nd: Rowena, Oxfam International, oxfam.com. 3rd: Sunday School by FatCamera, Getty Images.