Greetings in the name of the one who has the qualities of ‘a mothering hen’!
Jesus, as he looked over Jerusalem from the Mount of Olives, wept saying, ‘O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones God’s messengers! How often I have wanted to gather your children together as a hen protects her chicks beneath her wings, but you wouldn’t let me.’ What a graphic portrayal of God’s love for people.
In 1908, Anna Jarvis held the first Mother’s Day service at a Methodist church in West Virginia as a memorial to her own mother who died May 9, 1905. Anna Jarvis was never a mother, yet had such great respect and love for her mother that she began the observance of Mother’s Day. And she did this after her mother had died, meaning that she never spent a single Mother’s Day with her mother.
Every single one of us, man, woman, and child was given life by a mother. And this, we can celebrate. We can celebrate our own mom, and, the mother of our children. They are all a gift to us, and remind us of God’s undying love. The scriptures tell us to ‘not forsake the teaching of your mother’ and to ‘honour our mothers and fathers’.
But I know all too well about the stories of those whose mother’s love was experienced as less than perfect. The Bible acknowledges this: “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; your walls are ever before me’. So reads Isaiah 49:15. A mother’s love, though great, is not equal to God’s capacity to love, which is infinite and perfect.
For some, Mother’s Day is a reminder of what you don’t have – the mother you don’t have, the child you don’t have, the life you don’t have. Counter those thoughts with the knowledge that God is faithful, and is wishing to draw you close.
So, in this second Mother’s Day of the pandemic, what will you do? Find a way to show gratitude for your mom. A virtual visit, a phone call, an expression of appreciation. There may be lots of mother’s who will not see their children in the flesh, and lots of children who will not see their mothers in the flesh this Mother’s Day. Or you’ll see each other from a distance of 2 meters with no hugs or physical closeness. Whether you can be with your mother or not, this year for Mother’s Day, take some time to remember your mother and think of at least one thing to be grateful for because of the gift of your mom.