Ministry Updates for Friday, May 8th, 2020

Scripture for Reflection – Exodus 20:12

Honor your father and mother, so your days may be long in the land the Lord your God is giving to you.

Reflection – Mother’s Day

We often think of the Ten Commandments of a list of prohibitions, as in ‘thou shalt not’. Realistically, there are some rock solid ‘thou shalts’ in there too.

I suspect in the early days, when most everyone lived off the land, if you did not honor your parents, you might find yourself without land to live on. The value of this commandment may have been wise investment advice as well as spiritual advice.

Some time back I read ‘Blue Zones’ and preached on it. We also discussed it in an adult Christian Education class. It was about what people who lived to be 100 typically practiced. One longevity factor was the blessing of having friends and family close. Staying connected to mom and dad is good for them, and for you.

Just as soon as I write or say such a statement, I am reminded not everyone had a positive experience of their parents. I am not talking about the usual parent mistakes of being too strict, too lenient, or unthoughtful in a situation. I am talking about truly poor parenting, empty of love and filled with neglect or abuse. It may be hard to figure out what it means to honor your mother and father if you had such experiences. I can only say we are blessed with the power to forgive and be forgiven, and the promise of God as our ultimate parent.

This Mother’s Day will be both special and difficult for me. As a new grandfather, I am excited and thankful for my daughter to celebrate her first Mother’s Day. As my own mother is now in a memory care assisted living facility, and I cannot visit her, I am facing a new and painful first. I am thankful for this also though; not for the situation, but for the pain, because it is born of love for someone who gave so much for me.

Prayer for Mothers

God in heaven, we give you thanks for our memories, so we might be able to remember those mothers who have died, but who live on in our hearts and in heaven. We pray for those mothers whose children preceded them in death. Ease their pain. We pray for those mothers and children with estranged relationships. Help them believe in your reconciling power. We are thankful for our mothers who may be in facilities where we are not able to visit them. Protect them and let their care givers know we are thankful for them, too. We are thankful for mothers we will be able to reach out to today, either in person or through the phone or other technology. Let them feel our love. And for those of us who are mothers, or fathers or grandparents, also give us opportunity to let our children know how much we love them. Amen.