Honoring Mothers, the Corner Turned
The political climate is tense with the prospect of overturning Roe v. Wade as we celebrate Mother’s Day 2022. Roe v. Wade was an astonishing decision made in 1973 by the U.S. Supreme Court giving women the right to choose to have an abortion. Whether you call this the antithesis of motherhood or personal freedom, it has vastly changed our culture and called Christians and the pro-life movement to rally to end abortion. On the cusp of the corner turned, at last, we observe Mother’s Day in hope and prayer.
Though widely commercialized today the celebration of Mothers has a rich history. Created by a woman named Anna Jarvis in 1908, it became an official U.S. holiday in 1914. Going further back, we find that ancient Greeks and Romans held festivals honoring mother goddesses. In more recent history, the United Kingdom recognized a tradition called “Mothering Sunday”. It was held on the fourth Sunday of lent and was an encouragement to return to the “mother church” of their childhood on that Sunday.[i]
Many churches have adopted the recognition of mothers on Mother’s Day by passing out flowers, honoring women for the most children, grandchildren, etc. This day, however, can bring sadness as people reflect on tumultuous childhoods with less than caring mothers. The family unit is no longer the Donna Reed family of the 60s. There are mothers and stepmothers and step-grandmothers and absent mothers. There are same sex marriages in which men take the role of a nurturing mother. There are countless women who for one reason or another chose to relinquish their motherhood with abortion, and feel the empty womb every day of their life, especially on Mother’s Day.
What is the Christian’s responsibility to mothers? Exodus 20:12 places “Honor your father and your mother” as the 5th commandment. It does not add “if they are honorable”. Yes, parents can fall short of the expectations children place on them and cloud an honest attempt at honor. Jesus did not call us to love only the lovable. He looked at our sin and decided He loved us to the point of death. Many mothers say they would die for their children. There is no person on earth that has the relationship of mother to child save that of a mother.
When Roe v. Wade is overturned, Christians will be called on to support mothers like no other time in American history. There will be mothers who need financial assistance, medical assistance, and emotional support. Our shoulders must be broad to carry the burdens of many. “Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will repay him for his deed.” (Proverbs 22:9) We must remember to replace judgment with compassion and promote a culture of life instead of a culture of death. Not relying on social nets to carry this next generation of mothers but the love of Christ and the works of His followers. Mother’s Day 2023 may be the corner turned. Are you ready?[ii]
Foundations of Truth hereby waives all claim of copyright (economic and moral) in this work and immediately places it in the public domain; it may be used, published, edited, and distributed in any manner whatsoever without any attribution or notice to Foundations of Truth.