May is the month when we honor moms, and rightfully so. How many times, as a kids’ camp director, have I seen the positive influence of godly mothers?
How many times, as a football coach, did I see young men charge onto the field in a stadium full of 80,000 people and scan the stands for one person? The most-important person in their lives. The one person who is always on their side, always cheers them on come touchdown or fumble. The one person who, if she’s there, everything is good—and if she’s not, none of the other 79,999 folks matter.
And when the TV camera comes in close on a player after he’s just made a great play, what does that young man say nine times out of ten? “Hi, Mom!”
Even before a child is born, Mom has nurtured and cared for that little life for nine months. That tiny girl in the womb knows Mom’s voice, Mom’s emotions, Mom’s diet, Mom’s very heartbeat.
It seems the two women and their babies were sharing the same sleeping space, and in the night one woman rolled over and smothered her baby without realizing it. The tragedy was discovered in the morning. But whose baby died, and whose survived? Both women claimed the living child. And no one could prove the answer.
The matter was brought to Solomon for resolution. His solution? Cut the baby in half and give half to each woman. The woman who knew the surviving baby wasn’t hers basically said, “Yes, do that. It’s a great idea!” But the mother whose baby it was said, “No, let the baby live! Give him to the other woman. I would rather give him up and live without him than see him killed.”
Hearing these two responses, Solomon knew which woman was the child’s real mother—the one who loved the baby so much that she would willingly sacrifice her own happiness in order to protect her infant. That’s the depth, the essence, of a mother’s love.
Moms display that same sacrificial love every day—cooking, cleaning, nursing, sometimes professionally making a living for her family, tutoring, listening, holding, advocating, and on and on. Tragically, it’s often a thankless job, but there’s none more important in all the world.
I’ve been blessed by two such moms, my own mother and my wife Debbie-Jo, who was and is the world’s best mom to our four kids. I’ve seen them both match the standards of the Proverbs 31 woman, and I’ve seen how my siblings and I, and my own kids, run to them, trust them, and lean on them as the rock of their lives. The interesting thing about these two dear women… Neither one had a Father in their lives. Mom’s dad disappeared. Debbie-Jo’s dad was killed in a military jet when she was four. But BOTH of them grew up with a wonderful, sacrificial, hard working Mom and “the Father to the fatherless” to call Dad.
So this month, Moms, know how much you’re loved and appreciated, even if you don’t always hear it said. For us, husbands and children, we have got to take a step up and serve, love and deeply appreciate these dear women in our lives! It IS Mother’s Day… for the next 365 days in a row!