Every year as Mother’s Day approaches, I’m always very conscious of what this day means for everyone. I know for many this day is treasured. Especially for Mum’s of young children who will receive hand made gifts and have lots of sticky cuddles and kisses throughout the day. Many Mum’s look forward to having their adult children come home for the day to enjoy a meal together. But not everyone, some adult children can’t or won’t be able to see their Mum’s. I also know that there are Mum’s who ache on this day because of fractured relationships with their children or children who are perhaps wayward. Some find this day difficult because they’ve lost their Mum or they never had the opportunity to become a mother. Some Mum’s have lost their children and others had or have difficult relationships with their mother.
Whatever this day holds for you, my encouragement is that we thank God for Mother’s. For the role that biological Mum’s or women He brought into your life that have nurtured and treasured you. Praise God for His imprint on women. That of gentleness, tenderness, caring, nurturing, loving…
In her article ‘A Reason to Celebrate Mother’s Day’, Taryn Hayes also reflects on the truth that Mother’s Day is wonderful for many and very difficult for others. I hope we can also heed her words:
I do not know whether celebrating Mother’s Day when it hurts so much for others is simply insensitive and unwise or worth it no matter what. I do not know what is best for the masses or for me. I do not know how I will feel when even a phone call will no longer allow me to reach my mum or one of my children.
But what I do know is when a loss causes great hurt, it’s most often because its presence is worth great joy. And great joy is worth great celebration. God gave us the gift of mothers. God compares his comforting of Israel to the comfort of mothers (Isaiah 66:13). It is to God’s praise when a woman is at long last able to bear a child—memorialised in the stories of Abraham and Sarah. And Hannah. And Rebecca. And Rachel. In the pages of God’s Word, mothers mean much.
So, I concluded that when the day comes when Mother’s Day is more a reminder to me of devastation than delight, I hope that, in my pain, I will still be able to recognise the joy worth celebrating in the gift that God has given us in mothers. I hope that I will:
- honour the gift of life that came through the pain of birth;
- bask in the memories of joy when the tears are heavy;
- celebrate the friends I have for the life their mothers gave them;
- rejoice in mothers of the heart as they love another’s birth child;
- delight in those who mother in small and big ways;
- still be able to give—give smiles and hugs or gifts and words or acts of service and kindness, whether to mothers or daughters, motherless or daughterless…
And if it’s all too hard, too painful or too soon, that I will be honest with my pain and say, “It’s too hard, too painful, and too soon, but even so, it’s good and worthy and wonderful and deserving of celebration. Please … celebrate for me.”