In many countries around the world, the second Sunday in May has traditionally been a day where mothers are honoured. Although we do not celebrate “Mother’s Day” as a religious observance, it is still worthwhile to take the time to “honour our mothers” (Ephesians 6:2-3) and show them the respect they deserve. Hopefully, we honour and celebrate our mothers 365 days a year, and not only on Mother’s Day.
Why are our mothers to be honoured and celebrated? Here are 6 reasons, derived from the description of the virtuous woman (who was also a mother!) found in Proverbs 31:10-31.
M – MORALLY GOOD
The woman of Proverbs 31:10-13 is often called the “virtuous woman” (Proverbs 31:10). The word translated as “virtuous” can also be translated as “strong”, “morally courageous”. We honour our mothers for being morally good people, who do the right thing not because it is easy, but because it is the just and upright thing to do. We honour our mothers for passing down these moral lessons to their children, to “train up a child in the way he should go” (Proverbs 22:6).
O – OBSERVANT
Have you ever wondered if our mothers have a “sixth sense”? They somehow seem to know when their children are upset or frustrated, and are often even able to pinpoint the reason for the child’s frustration without the child having to disclose it. Mothers are often the first ones to observe when the children are about to fall sick. Mothers are very observant people! The virtuous woman of Proverbs 31:10-13 was observant as well. She was given the responsibility of evaluating a potential property purchase (Proverbs 31:16). She is described as having a “candle that goeth not out by night”, that is, she is observant 24/7, and not only at times convenient to her. We honour our mothers for being observant and watchful over their families’ needs.
T – TALENTED
The phrase “jack of all trades, master of none” is often used as a pejorative to describe a person who attempts to do many things, but is not proficient in any of them. Perhaps we should describe our mothers as “masters of all” instead! Need a hot meal? Mummy is the masterchef. Need a lizard or cockroach chased away? Mummy is the pest exterminator. Need someone to keep the household schedule and budget in order? Mummy is the Minister of Home Affairs and Minister of Finance. Our mothers are talented people! The virtuous woman of Proverbs 31:10-13 was talented as well. She worked with her hands (Proverbs 31:13), she was able to make a well-considered property purchase (Proverbs 31:16), she was able to make goods to sell in the marketplace (Proverbs 31:24). Let us honour our mothers for being talented in many things!
H – HARDWORKING
Not only are our mothers talented, but they apply their talents to good use by being extremely hardworking. Our mothers are often the first to wake up and the last to go to bed. They are often hard at work doing “unpaid labour”, such as the cleaning around the house, the cooking, and ensuring the household functions in an orderly manner. Our mothers are so hardworking that they often do not have time for their own leisure activities. The virtuous woman of Proverbs 31:10-13 displayed her industrious, hardworking nature as well. She does not shun manual labour, but “works willingly with her hands” (Proverbs 31:13). She awakes while the sun had not risen, to prepare food for her household (Proverbs 31:14). Our mothers are the unseen, hardworking, engines of our households. Without them, things would grind to a halt. Let us honour our mothers for being hardworking!
E – EMPATHETIC
When a child gets upset, who do they usually turn to? Mummy or Daddy? They usually run into their mother’s arms, because they know that Mummy is more likely to give them the care, concern, and attention that they desire. Our mothers are empathetic and “tuned-in” to the emotions of her children, of her husband, and even those whom she comes across in her daily life. Our mothers understand the needs of others, and seeks what best for them. Likewise, the virtuous woman did good to her husband, not evil (Proverbs 31:12). Her mouth was filled with kind and wise words for her children and others (Proverbs 31:26). We honour our mothers for being empathetic to the needs and concerns of those around them.
R – REVERENTIAL
Why do our Christian mothers do all of the above and more, even when it tires and exhausts them? They do so because they understand that they have been entrusted with an important responsibility to nurture her husband and children, and that the one who has entrusted them with this task is our Great God Himself. They respect His authority and want to do their very best to live up to the role they have been placed in. They want to teach their children to love and respect the same God that they submit to. The virtuous woman was not necessarily charming or beautiful, but she was a woman that feared the Lord (Proverbs 31:30). She stood reverentially and respectfully before Him. Let us honour our mothers for revering God, and let us emulate their examples and love God like they do!
A M.O.T.H.E.R. is a wonderful person who deserves to be honoured, not just on Mother’s Day, but every day. Thank God for our mothers! Show her your love today, and every day.