A Mother’s Day Devotional from Pastor Mary Hovland
Mother’s Day: A cross-stitch I made years ago reads, “We hold our mother’s hands for a while, their heart forever.” I made one for my mother and one for my mother-in-law. These words ring true yet today. The influence our mothers have had in our lives is profound. My oldest son asked me once years ago, “Who taught you how to be a mother?” I said, “You did not come with a book of instructions.” What I did offer to him were teachings from my mother, grandmothers, great-grandmother, nurses’ training, cultural traditions, and Biblical references.
When I look back on these teachings, what was most important in these teachings, was the faithfulness of all the women in my life whom I kindly modeled my own skills for motherhood. Faith in God is the only true reference point we have in our lives.
The Gospel Lesson for Mother’s Day is from John:17. What Jesus offers in this prayer for the disciples and for us, includes instructions for parents.
- “That they may know you.” As Christian parents we bring our children to church so they may learn to know and trust God. It is a promise we made to them at the baptismal font and continues every day of our life. This promise is forever as we continue to love our children and in both word and actions continually be examples of faithful living.
- “I pray for them.” Just as Jesus prayed for his disciples and for us, we pray for our families and all people of the world. This precious gift we can offer daily. One benefit of aging well is having more time for prayer. The world seems short on time. What a powerful gift to continue to pray.
- “Do not take them out of the world. Keep them in the world.” Sometimes this is a hard word to pray. As parents we would like to protect our children from all harm. Perhaps at times we overprotect them. We want all to be well for them. We want our children to enjoy life. At the same time, in order to grow in faith and in life, they need to learn for themselves how to cope with hardship so they may grow strong.
- “That you will gather, call and send them into the world.” That is my prayer also. First, I thank you, Lord, for blessing all your children with gifts to share with others. I thank you not only for giving gifts, but for your encouragement in growing these gifts and giving all children opportunities to share these gifts with others. Our primary job on earth is to love one another. Thank you for empowering us to part of telling the whole world about your great love for all people…. beginning with one small act of kindness from each of us.
Blessings to you all this Mother’s Day,
Pastor Mary Hovland
Four generation picture of my mother, Magel Elaine Boyd, my grandmother, Agnes Cecelia Knutson, my great grandmother, Katarina,”Carrie” Johnson, and me, Mary Leigh Boyd Hovland.