Today is Mother’s Day. Remembering Mothers’ love that bear and nurtured us while reflecting how we have graciously responded to that love thus far.
More importantly, this is the day of opportunity to renew our resolution on how we may pay respect to that most noble and precious love of a Mother in our walk going forward. In this light while considering the depth of Mothers’ love, discover our thanks in review of the three Mother characters revealed in today’s sermon and capture how we too may nurture and set the examples to our children to follow as a Mother ourselves.
I. The highest love of a mother – Samuel’s mother Hannah (1Samuel 1)
In the lyrics of the writers Yun Chun Byung and Park Jae Jun writes that although the highest of the highest is the sky above us, the higher than the blue skies is gracious love of a Mother.
While Hannah was favored with greater love from her husband, the pain and humiliation she endured because of her wealth was severe. Hence, Hannah took her pain and humiliation to the Lord in prayer at the sanctuary of God pledging that she would offer up to God if God would grant a son to be born. God thereafter granted Samuel to be born to Hannah. After Samuel was weaned, Hannah took Samuel to Eli the priest saying, “So now I give him to the Lord. For his whole life, he will be given over to the Lord and he worship the Lord there(1Samuel 1”28) hence Hannah obeyed to the pledge she made to the Lord.
Thereafter, the Lord established a strong Israel and by one woman’s pledge and obedience, the era for Saul and David unfolded through Samuel’s leadership. Here, we are able to witness that the fruit of Hannah’s pledge begun from sacred love of a Mother. Surrendering her only son to the Lord was planted as the seed from which a strong tree established with many branches in fruition. We are able to witness truly graceful and tender fruits when Mothers’ love of the child is grafted into the tree of Gods’ love. Therefore to you the beloved Mothers, entrust your children to God in service of God for heavenly purpose with sacred love in pledge with prayer, then God’s magnificent purpose will come to solidify in your child’s life.
II. The widest of a mother's love – Mother of Moses Jochbed (Exodus 2)
Jochbed’s song, “They say it's a wide and spacious sea, but I have another wider and spacious one than the blue sea, the Mothers’ gracious love that whispers to become a respected being”.
Moses was born during an era when Pharaoh of Egypt in attempt to suppress growing Israel population therefore commanded to kill all male Child born to Israel woman.
This precisely was about the time when a man of the tribe of Levi married a Levite woman Jochbed and she became pregnant and gave birth to a son, but when she saw that he was a fine child, she hid him for three months. But when she could hide him no longer, she got a papyrus basket for him and coated with tar and pitch. Then she placed the child in the basket and put it among the reeds along the bank of the Nile in Jochbed’s attempt to keep Moses alive. Perhaps, Jochbed was inspired to make the ark basket remembering Noah’s Ark which saved all in the Ark when the whole world was submerged under water. Therefore may Mothers of faith remember that the ark must be made for your children and the ark must be coated with tar and pitch to protect them from infusion of the world.
Then, place the ark along the reeds of the Nile which was made of Papyrus used as paper in that era. Mother of faith in our time, we can gain instruction from this magnificent mother of faith Jochbed who prepared the Ark of Papyrus, the tar and pitch for Moses. Moses through this small ark prepared by Jochbed, later leads all Israel miraculously through crossing over the vast Red Sea, and such miracle may not be realized without Jochbed’s ark, tar, the pitch for Moses.
To the faithful, the reeds are where it is nearer to the Word of God. Hence Moses at age 40 and at age 80 was anchored in faith having been reared by the Word of God as a child and the scripture confirms in Psalms 119:105, “Your Word is a lamp for my feet and light on my path”. To all Mothers of faith! … Prepare for your children the Ark of Paqpyrus-the tar and pitch and place your child along the reeds(along the Word of God), then the child will grow to accomplish miracles of grandeur and in charge of broader footage of the field in life. It is said in Numbers 12:3,”Now Moses was a very humble man, more humble than anyone else in the face of the earth” and outcome is confirmed in Matthew 5:5 that,”Blessed are the humble for they will inherit the earth”.
Humble are those whom are forgiving, those whom are shielding heart. Jochbed even in midst dire circumstances accepted reality as it was being presented but sought hope, opportunity and embraced positive dream rather than to grumble, complain and mope about her unfortunate circumstances. With this as our flag of hope, let us plant our children near the Word of God and nurture with dream for their fruition.
III. The deepest of mothers’ love – Mary the Mother of Jesus (Luke 1)
Pastor Kim Keun Tae writer writes, “They say that the sea is deeper than imaginable depth but I have another even deeper, a love of patience and sacrifice of Mothers’ love seems deeper than the sea”.
Humanly, the mother of Jesus was a woman of misfortune because she was raised in the foreign land leaving her hometown. Then as a virgin, she conceived a child by the Holy Spirit. Then she started to show her pregnancy as time went on and as a result suffered the pain of being ostracized by Joseph. Then as delivery neared, Mary suffered the long journey back to her hometown. Then she endured giving birth in a manger in midst of foul odor of animals. Have we even imagined Mary’s sorrow and suffering? Then in order to protect the life of her child, she endured few years as an immigrant in the foreign land.
Thereafter, Mary went to Nazareth hometown of Joseph and there she bore four sons, James, Joseph, Simon and Judas (Matthew 13:55) and several daughters (Matthew 13:56), and Mary likely did not live an abundant life with her husband as a Carpenter. Then one day likely when father Joseph may have deceased, Mary took her children to visit Jesus but Jesus stated, “who are my Mother and my brothers?(Mark 3:33). Imagine the sorrow Mary must have felt with this insensitivity from Jesus!. Even in midst of Mary’s inner suffering, she had to live on without being able to reveal that her son Jesus is Christ the Lord.
Further, all this suffering was not the end for Mary because she witnessed her 33 year old son Jesus crucify along with most severe criminals on the cross.
Have you considered the pain of this Mother Mary?. When Jesus on the cross said, “Woman, here is your son”, then to His disciples standing by, “Here is your Mother” being acknowledged by her son for the first time with greatest gesture of respect is when Mary probably finally broke all she had held back until then with tears of wailing like running river. The scripture ends recording about Mary here but without a doubt, Mary’s life truly was one of hardship and sorrow.
Indeed, on the 8th day circumcision ceremony, Mary heard from Priest Simon prophesied to Mary that, “This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel and to be a sign that would be spoken against so that the thoughts of many hearts be revealed and a sword will pierce through your own soul too”. As such as the prophesied, Mary lived a life as if the sword was piecing through her heart because of Jesus. In spite in midst tragic circumstances, Mary lived praising God in thanksgiving in Luke 1:46-48 she confesses,” My soul glorifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior for He has been mindful of the humble state of His servant and from now on all generations will call me blessed”. Indeed a life of a Mother is one of suffering, sacrifice and service.
Hence to the sacrifice of the Mother feeding and nurturing while in the womb for 10 months is much easier to bear than the patience, suffering and sacrifice for rearing child’s life by comparison. Therefore, beloved Mothers of faith, know that greater your pain and suffering and sacrifice, embrace hope that more significant the child’s gratitude therefore nurture our children with patience in Christian faith.
The Grandeur of the Love of God (Hymn 404)
“The love of God is greater far than tongue or pen can ever tell, It goes beyond the highest star and reaches to the lowest hell, Oh the love of God how rich and pure, how measureless and strong, it shall for evermore endure, the saints and angels’ song”
Verse-4 written in by Pastor Kim, Mothers’ love is greater than great but I have one that is even greater, the love of the Father God who sent His only Son for my life is greater still.
Mothers’ day is a day to reflect on the height, the widest of width and the deepest of the depth of the Mothers’ love to keep closer to our hearts, but introspectively ponder why God has granted know about Mothers’ love in our life time? … Through highest of the heights, the widest of the width and the deepest of the depth of the Mothers’ love, it is Gods’ Will for us to realize even greater love …the love of Christ Jesus our Lord and Savior. For those whom are unable to relate even greater love of Christ Jesus through Mothers’ love, the love in vein as such will end with end of life, but those whom are able to relate eternal love of God through a Mothers’ love will not only meet the Lord in glory but also rejoice in together with Mothers’ love in glory.
To this end, make it an opportune time while living on earth to realize boundless love of a Mother hence to relate that love to the love of God for eternity. May we all therefore as a Mother or a Father in Christ love our children with patience and sacrifice and build a beautiful fellowship with each other as congregation – body of love in Christ Jesus.