Yesterday was one of the most celebrated days of the year: Mother’s Day. All across our country, people celebrated the one person who has been there with them from the very beginning. We salute you moms.
As a pastor of a local church, I know that Mother’s Day is one of the biggest days of the year. As far as church attendance goes, Mother’s Day is usually in the top three of the year with Christmas and Easter. (If Momma ain’t happy, ain’t no one happy!)
As we are on the other side of this “big day,” I thought that I would share some thoughts that I had about Mother’s Day.
- Moms are definitely worth honoring. I have such a great respect and admiration for moms out there. I know that I had a great mom growing up. I know that my wife is the greatest mom on the planet. The “job” that moms do is one that not just anyone can do. It calls for so much of their time, energy, and life.
- Mother’s Day may be missing the point. I enjoy a good celebration. I believe that there is nothing wrong with celebrating moms. I just think that it shouldn’t be done one day out of the year. I fear that there are some who see this day as another check on their list – “treated mom today, I’m good for another year.” The Bible tells us that we should honor our parents at all times (Exodus 20:12; Ephesians 6:2-3). To set aside one day and honor mom is just lacking on so many levels.
- Mother’s Day can be a difficult day. While many enjoy Mother’s Day and all that goes with it, there are many who dread this day. For those who did not have a loving mother, it is hard to get excited about this day. Thoughts of abandonment and mistreatment arise and make this a tough day to get through. For those who have had to walk the painful journey of losing a mother to death, it can be tough. I lost my mother a couple of years ago. This day makes me think about not only the good times I had with her but those days around when I had to say “good-bye.” For those who have had to walk the painful path of losing a child/miscarriage, Mother’s Day is extremely difficult. All those memories and “what ifs” flood one’s heart like few other times.
- You don’t have to give birth to be celebrated on Mother’s Day. While I had a great mom, there have been a few people that God has placed in my life that have also played that role to a degree. There are many who are not able to have children of their own, and they feel left out on Mother’s Day. I would like to say to all those ladies out there who are playing the mom role in a child’s life even though it is not biologically yours, THANK YOU!!! You will never know the impact that it makes. Every child needs a mom, and there are many who are desperately looking for that need to be filled in their life.
I am so thankful to God for the mother that He allowed me to have for so long here on this earth. I am also so thankful for the mother that God has blessed my children with (as I said earlier, she’s the best). I hope that you honored the ladies in your life who play this vital role well. Just don’t let it be a one day out of the year thing.
What were some of your thoughts coming off of Mother’s Day?
This morning was a first for me. The morning started out pretty much like any other morning. There was the getting breakfast together, helping get the kids ready for the day and then finally getting myself ready. I was running through things in my mind that I would like to get done today in the office – sermons for Wednesday and Sunday, reading that I would like to get done, planning, etc.
As I was getting my things together to head out the door, it happened. I don’t know where it came from, but it hit hard. We have never seen this reaction before. Our middle son, Sam, bust out into tears and said that he wanted to stay with Daddy. I was blindsided.
Normally, our boys flock to the mother for EVERYTHING. They are true-blue Momma-boys. I’m okay with that. I was a Momma-boy growing up as well. For some reason today, Sam wanted his Daddy. I would be lying if I said that there was not a feeling of pride swelling up inside of me.
I made the decision to give this thing a try. There is nothing for my 4-year-old son to do in my office other than color on some paper and play in the floor in the corner. I told my wife something along the lines of, “let’s see what happens.” We got him ready and a couple of toys, and it was off to the office with Daddy. Surprisingly, he did pretty good – other than lock himself in the bathroom.
We went home for lunch and I told my son that he would have to stay at the house with Mommy. He was fine with that. He had some one-on-one “Daddy time,” and he was happy with that.
I was reminded during the time together and over lunch that these kiddos are not going to be here in our house very long. There is a small window of their life that we as their parents have to make an impact. Ministry is tough work. There is a lot of preparation, planning, and praying that must be done. But, as I was reminded of today, it should never come at the expense of your family.
This is not some kind of riddle. It is just a thought that has been on my mind for the past couple of weeks. The thought began when our oldest son, Drew, came to his mother and I and said that he was ready to become a follower of Jesus.
This moment is one that my bride and I have been anxiously awaiting for some time now. We began praying soon after each one of our sons was born that they would become genuine followers of Jesus. A couple of weeks back, our oldest son crossed that threshold.
Yesterday, I had the wonderful privilege of baptizing our oldest son. Each baptism I am a part of is special, but this one definitely placed at the top of the list. I promised myself that I would not cry, but the moment was just too much. As my son looked up at me and answered affirmatively that he has chosen to follow Jesus, I couldn’t hold it in.
Ecclesiastes 3:1 says, “There is an occasion for everything, and a time for every activity under heaven.” Ecclesiastes 3:4 says, “a time to weep and a time to laugh.”
Yesterday was a day that I will hold as one of the greatest days in this parent’s life. It was a day where my son was recognized as my brother in Christ!
As a parent, there are some days that you look forward to with great expectation. There is the seeing the child for the first time. There is hearing them say your name for the first time. As they take those first steps, you are there with the camera (or smartphone) going.
As a parent who is a Christian, there are a whole other set of things that we look forward to seeing in our children. At the top of the list has to be when your child places their faith into Jesus for themselves. This is a point that you pray for from their first day.
This past week was a great week for our family. Our oldest son, Drew, came to us and said that he was ready to trust Jesus. He had been asking questions for a while. This past week, he nailed that decision down. Yesterday, he shared with our church family the great news.
I took a couple of things away from this experience:
1. Be praying for your children. This may seem like one of those “needless to say” statements, but the truth is that the best thing that we can do for our children and grandchildren is to pray for them. Pray for their salvation. Pray for their future spouse. Pray for them to be used for God’s glory.
2. Remember that salvation is a personal decision. One of the hardest things with my oldest son was allowing him the room, freedom, and time to make the ultimate decision to follow Jesus. I wanted so bad to see him saved from the moment he was born. I realized quickly that it wasn’t my decision. Give your children that room to make a decision on their own.
3. Rejoice when one is saved. It doesn’t have to be a family member coming to Christ for us to get all excited. We should rejoice anytime that one comes to Christ. If it is our children, celebrate all the more. Watching my son accept Christ reminded me just how amazing that moment is in a person’s life.
Are you awaiting the day when your child or loved one comes to Christ? Keep praying for them. Keep an open door to them for questions. Let Jesus show them the difference He can make in their life.
Adoption is one the hardest and most rewarding things that can happen on this earth. At least that’s what I’m told from those who have gone through the process. Giving a family-less child a home and family… There’s something special about that. Seems like I’ve heard that scenario somewhere. Oh yeah, it was what Jesus does for every person who places their faith and trust in Him.
When the time came to completion, God sent His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying, “ Abba, Father! ” So you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God. (Galatians 4:4-7 HCSB)
We have some friends who are on this journey currently. They are set to pick up their daughter, Olivia Hope, from China in the coming weeks. They are trying to raise the remaining funds for this to happen. They are selling t-shirts to help raise these funds. Please go to Marconnet Family Adoption to purchase a t-shirt and help this great family bring their daughter home. The shirts will be sold through March 13th.