By Rev Angela C Bosfield Palacious
One of the powerful ministries given to women by God is the gift of mothering. When we celebrate Mother’s Day this year, let us consider some of the models that we have in the Bible along with the nurturing women who have influenced us personally, so as to determine some of the qualities that are associated with this work for the Lord.
The first mother who comes to mind is the mother of Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. A woman full of grace, she teaches us that from an early age a young person may be focused on the things of God, and blessed with a ministry of great magnitude.
Throughout the gospels, we hear of her loving attentiveness and we can only imagine what her prayers for her son would have involved. The movie, “The Passion”, has captured for all time some of the intimacy and poignancy of their relationship.
Another mother who exemplifies wisdom and strength of character is Naomi in the Old Testament. She is thoughtful when it comes to wishing to set her daughter-in-law free to marry again, she is astute in the ways of directing Ruth in her approach to Boaz, and she is a devout worshipper of God in both her deep sorrow and overwhelming joy.
Hannah is a woman who prayed fervently to be a mother and who was rewarded with a child of great renown in the prophet Samuel.
Like Elizabeth, the mother of John the Baptist, and Sarah, the mother of Isaac, she has to endure the shame of her barrenness until a child is conceived.
Today, we know that persons who adopt make wonderful mothers and that the inability to have children may be a medical condition that may also be attributable to the man’s infertility.
We who are mothers wrestle with our desire to be the best that we can be in an age when authorities differ on subjects such as freedom and responsibility, punishment and reward, nutrition and good health. Most of us are influenced by the homes in which we were nurtured and find ourselves following the patterns used in our own development. Others are adamant that they wish to do things very differently and forge new paths of parenting in keeping with modern thinking.
Hopefully, whatever the approach used, we are seeking to find the way to set our children on the firm foundation of spiritual principles that have to do with generous living, holy vision, and commitment to family, country and most of all to God. We have to feed the body and the spirit, we are to train the mind and the manners.
Let us all look to see how best we may love the women who reared us, who still care for us, and who are young women in the making.
Treat the women in your life with courtesy and kindness, showing respect and honour, remembering to be grateful and to verbalise this gratitude on a daily basis. Let it not be one day a year that we pause to acknowledge them, rather let us shower them with prayer and praise all along the journey whether they seem to need it or not.