A Mother’s Day Reflection & Prayer


A Mother’s Day Reflection & Prayer
CrossWay Community Church
May 13th, 2018


Today is Mother’s Day. It’s a day we’ve dedicated to acknowledging, thanking, and celebrating mothers.

And as Christians, we have all the more reason to be appreciative.

We understand that God himself is the author motherhood. In the beginning, when God said, “Let us make humankind in our own image,” he followed it up with, “Be fruitful and multiply.” And in those words he created motherhood. Having moms was his idea.

And don’t miss this. The Bible calls this a blessing. Right before God says, “Be fruitful and multiply,” notice how he introduces this statement. What does the passage say? “And God blessedthem, and said, ‘Be fruitful and multiply.” The command to be fruitful and multiply, and with it the institution of motherhood, is described as a blessing by God.

As James tells us, “Every good gift and every perfect gift comes from our Father above.” And so when we give thanks for moms, we express thanks first and foremost to God himself. Motherhood was his idea. It’s a blessing from God.

And this is something many of us know from our own experience. Many of us have personally experienced the blessings of motherhood – whether that’s through your own mom, or maybe you’ve had the privilege of being a mom yourself. –Or we might add here, grandmothers, and great-grandmothers.

Moms are an expression of God’s grace towards humanity – for the rearing of children, for the good of the family, and for the betterment of society.

At the same time, we’d amiss if we failed to acknowledge the fact that for many Mother’s Day is a difficult day.

Some today are reminded of mothers that have since passed away. The grief is still real.

Some may struggle with bitterness, anger, or guilt. Maybe their relationship with their mom was less than what God intended it to be.

Others still are haunted by the pain of infertility, miscarriage, or past abortion; or we think of those here who are single and would desire to be married and become mothers. For many in our midst, Mother’s Day may feel like little more than a cruel reminder of loss and heartache. And far too often they suffer in silence. Because these situations are often private, their pain is often overlooked and forgotten.

The list goes on: Sometimes motherhood begins with unplanned or unexpected pregnancies – at times with fear, shame, or uncertainty. We can think of single mothers who may be raising children on their own. –Grandmothers who, for a variety of reasons, may be raising their children’s children. –Mothers of children with disabilities, and any unique challenges or demands those circumstance may bring.

There are undoubtedly a variety of stories represented in this room. And all of our experiences are unique, with differing mixes of joy and difficulty.

And so we experience Mother’s Day with a certain level of ambivalence. As Paul says, we are a body. We consider ourselves, not as separate, isolated individuals, but as those connected to one another. When one part of the body hurts, we all hurt with them.

And so Mother’s Day is a day in which we practice Paul’s exhortation to “rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep.” We hold up – on the one hand – the joys and blessing of motherhood. We thank God for our mothers, and show appreciation to our moms. Yet at the same time we show sympathy, care, and sensitivity to those for whom today is difficult.

As we do so, let’s pray towards that end:


God, on a day like today, we are simultaneously aware of the great gift you have given us in motherhood, and yet deeply grieved by the effects of sin upon it. We can hold these two together because we know that you have given us motherhood as something good; and yet things are not always the way you designed them to be. And so we are joyous and thankful; and yet at the same time we embrace those who mourn.

God, we thank you for motherhood. We give you thanks for mothers and grandmothers who raised us well. We give you thanks for moms who were with us during hard times, for moms who prayed for us when we were wayward, and for moms who served us in ways that often went unnoticed.

For those here who themselves have had the privilege of being mom and grandmoms, we thank you for that gift. We thank you for the joy of being able to welcome a newborn baby into the world – of seeing their first steps, and hearing their first words. We thank you for the children you have put into their stewardship, and the privilege it is to raise them to follow you.

We also recognize those in our community here who experience pain and a sense of loss today. We think of those mothers or grandmothers whose circumstances may be difficult or trying. We think specifically of those who have lost mothers, for whom today may feel like an anniversary of their grief. We think of those who long to be mothers, but mourn the absence of new life within them; those who’ve conceived, but suffered loss through miscarriage or abortion; those who have given birth, but endured the tragedy of having to bury their own child.

With them we cry, O Lord, how long must death get its way at the outset of life?

But you, O God, have answered our cry. You have shown concern for our plight by sending your very Son. He himself bore our sorrows and is deeply acquainted with our grief. Because of his resurrection, death no longer has any sting. And so, when we grieve, we now grieve as those with hope. We await a new heavens and a new earth in which all pain and suffering will be undone.

We thank you for this hope in the name Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

A Mothers’ Day Lament

As we anticipate Mother’s Day this coming Sunday, we are conscious of the ambivalence this day brings for us as a church community.

On the one hand, we rejoice in God’s gift of children to our mothers (and fathers). And we take time to consider the dignity of women and the significance of God-ordained motherhood. This is a time for celebration and thankfulness.

But, on the other hand, as we “mourn with those who mourn” (Rom 12:15), we remain aware of our members for whom this day quite forcefully reminds them — often in silence, secret, and solitude — of their grief, of the desire for motherhood unmet or lost through the experience of infertility, miscarriage, abortion, and a variety of other reasons.

* * * * *

A Mother’s Day Lament:

We recognize on a day like today that everything in God’s creation isn’t as it should be. Sin has broken families and caused deep pain and heartache, and suffering in creation has led to suffering in the flesh—some who long to be parents are unable to experience that joy. Let’s pray together, knowing that God hears us in our pain and sadness:

‘Lord, on this Mother’s Day
we lift up the aching hearts
of all those who long to be mothers,
but mourn the absence of new life within them;
who have conceived,
but suffered loss through miscarriage or abortion;
who have given birth,
but endured the tragedy of burying a child.

Their grief is often hidden from us
or neglected on this day of celebration of motherhood.
We pray that they may experience healing in this church family.

How long, O Lord, must death get its way at the outset of new life?
How long must joy be deferred or interrupted by such cruel sorrow?

Risen Lord of life, grant them comfort and peace,
breathe in us all the breath of new life.
Through Jesus Christ,
who defeated death,
* Written by Nathan Bierma