On May 8th, which was Mother’s Day, Ps. John Kok began his sermon by saying this: “I’m gonna ask you to do something really difficult.” He didn’t ask the congregation to make any grand gestures, but asked them to say to their mothers, face-to face, “Mom, I love you.”
“Perhaps if you are young, or not Chinese, it’s an easy thing to do,” he said. “In the Chinese culture, to say, “I love you” to an elderly parent is so embarrassing! We don’t need to say that they already know that we love them, or that actions speak louder than words, but all women love to hear these three simple words: I love you.”
Ps. John then went on to tell a story of a woman he once knew. Her husband had passed away many years ago and left her and her son a huge fortune. But in her old age, her son never had any time for her. When she was sick or needed to go to the bank, she had to depend on other people. When she fell down and hurt herself, he could not be bothered. All he knew was to spend the money that his father had left behind.
To him, his mother was as good as dead. This was what his mother told Ps. John before she went to be with the Lord. Every time she talked about her son, she would pour out her heart and cry. When she eventually passed away, her son cried and cried and cried, and bought lots of flowers for the funeral. While she was alive, he acted as if she was non-existent. After she had gone, he acted as if she was everything to him.
Ps. John then related another experience he had with an elderly lady who called him up late one night, worried that she was having a heart attack, as she was having chest pains. He asked her where her children were, and she said, “My children don’t care for me anymore.” Ps. John and his wife went to her house and brought her to the hospital, and while they were there, the nurses and doctors thought that they were her children.
If anyone doesn’t take care of his own relatives, especially his immediate family, he has denied the Christian faith and is worse than an unbeliever.
(1 Timothy 5:8)
While our parents are alive, we need to tell them that we love them, and show them our love now— not when they are already buried in the ground. Then, it will be too late to cry and buy lots and lots of expensive and beautiful flowers.
So how to do we love our mothers, and not deny our faith? Here are some biblical instructions:
1. Do not grieve our mothers.
A wise son brings joy to his father,
but a foolish son brings grief to his mother.
To bring grief is to cause pain. Often time, grief is used for the loss of a loved one. Here, it can be understood as the pain and hurt of having a son or daughter who is as good as dead—not there. Not there to bring joy, or to keep her company when she is lonely. Children, we are to gladden the hearts of our mothers. If the father is the head of the home, the mother is the heart. Don’t grieve her heart.
2. Do not despise our mothers.
Listen to your father, who gave you life,
and do not despise your mother when she is old.
To despise our mothers is to regard them as inferior—to look down on them, thinking that we now know more than them. As our mothers start to get old and lose their memory, we begin to think that she knows nothing or that anything she knows is only applicable to the dinosaur period.
3. Do not disgrace our mothers.
A rod and a reprimand impart wisdom,
but a child left undisciplined disgraces its mother.
We disgrace our mothers by bringing shame to them. Every mother wants to be proud of her children. If people were to tell your mother, “Your son/daughter is good for nothing, always asking for money, is lazy, etc.,” it would break her heart.
4. Do not rise up against our mothers.
For a son dishonors his father,
a daughter rises up against her mother,
a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law—
a man’s enemies are the members of his own household.
To rise up against our mother is to become an enemy in our own household. Women—whether daughter, or daughter-in-law; mother, or mother-in-law—are naturally more inclined to be gentle and affectionate. Rising up against one another and opposing one another creates a hostile environment in the home.
“Today is mother’s day,” Ps. John said. “Are our mothers proud of us? Are they happy when they talk about us? Let us not grieve our mothers, disgrace them, despise them, or rise up against them. Instead, do this: Honor them.”
Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the Lord your God is giving you.
This is binding, whether or not you are a believer in Christ—whether or not you are married—whether or not you still live with your parents. It is binding even if you no longer live in the same country as your parents. It does not matter if your mother is a good person or not. The Bible says nothing about her qualifications. The only question to ask is, “Is she your mother?”
Therefore, on this special day, go to your mother and say to her, “I love you,” and continue to love and honor her for as long as she is alive!
|Share The Good News|