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Motherhood Lessons from Mary

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Text: Various verses from the life of Mary.

Thesis: To honor and encourage mothers.


(1)   Theodore Roosevelt once said: “When all is said, it is the mother, and the mother only, who is a better citizen than the soldier who fights for his country. The successful mother, the mother who does her part in rearing and training aright the boys and girls who are to be the men and women of the next generation, is of greater use to the community, and occupies, if she would only realize it, a more honorable as well as a more important position than any man in it. The mother is the one supreme asset of the national life. She is more important, by far, than the successful statesman, or businessman, or artist, or scientist.”

(2)   Our mother’s teach us a lot. For example:

My Mother taught me LOGIC: "If you fall off that swing and break your neck, you can’t go to the store with me," as well as, "If everyone else jumped off a cliff would you do it too?"
My Mother taught me MEDICINE: "If you don’t stop crossing your eyes, they’re going to freeze that way."
My Mother taught me TO THINK AHEAD: "If you don’t pass your spelling test, you’ll never get a good job!"
My Mother taught me TO MEET A CHALLENGE: "What were you thinking? Answer me when I talk to you... Don’t talk back to me!"
My Mother taught me HUMOR: "When that lawn mower cuts off your toes, don’t come running to me."
My Mother taught me how to BECOME AN ADULT: "If you don’t eat your vegetables, you’ll never grow up.
My mother taught me about GENETICS: "You are just like your father!"
My mother taught me about my ROOTS: "Do you think you were born in a barn?"
My mother taught me about the WISDOM of AGE: "When you get to be my age, you will understand," or, "I will explain it all when you get older."
My mother taught me about ANTICIPATION: "Just wait until your father gets home."
My mother taught me about RECEIVING: “You are going to get it when I get you home.”
And the all time favorite thing my mother taught me, JUSTICE: "One day you will have kids, and I hope they turn out just like you. Then you’ll see what it’s like! I can’t wait!"

(3)   Now, on the serious side, let us look at some motherhood lessons from Mary’s life:



I.                   Mary had a personal relationship with God.

A.    In Luke 1:30, we read: “Then the angel said to her, ‘Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God.’”

B.     In Luke, 1:46-47, we read: “My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior.”

C.     The foundation for being a good mother is a relationship with God.

1.      Many Christian wives had converted their husbands by living a godly life (cf. 1 Pet. 3:1-6).

2.      Many Christian women have taught their children the way of the Lord   (cf. 2 Tim. 3:15).

II.                Mary had a servant’s heart.

A.    In Luke 1:38, we read: “And Mary said, ‘Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.’ And the angel departed from her.”

B.     Having a servant’s heart is a necessity to being a good mother.

1.      How many mothers have sacrificed for their children?

2.      Illustration:

About 6:00 A.M. on a Wednesday morning James Lawson of Running Springs, California (in the San Bernardino mountains) left home to apply for a job. About an hour later his thirty-six-year-old wife, Patsy left for her fifth grade teaching job down the mountain in Riverside, accompanied by her two children, five-year-old Susan and two-year-old Gerald, to be dropped off at the babysitter’s.
Unfortunately, they never got that far. Eight and a half hours later the man found his wife and daughter dead in their wrecked car, upside down in a cold mountain stream. His two-year-old son was just barely alive in the forty-eight degree water.
But in that death the character of a mother was revealed in a most dramatic and heart-rending way. For when the father scrambled down the cliff to what he was sure were the cries of his dying wife, he found her locked in death, holding her little boy’s head just above water in the submerged car. For eight and a half hours Patsy Lawson had held her beloved toddler afloat and had finally died, her body almost frozen in death in that position of self-giving love, holding her baby up to breathe. She died that another might live. That’s the essence of a mother’s love.
(James S. Hewett, Illustrations Unlimited, published by Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois, 1988; pg. 375).

III.             Mary had a proper relationship with her family.

A.    She supported her husband’s leadership.

1.      In Matthew 2:13-14, she followed him to Egypt.

2.      In Matthew 2:19-23, she returned with him to Israel.

B.     She raised her children properly.

1.      In Luke 2:51-52, we read: “Then He went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was subject to them, but His mother kept all these things in her heart.  And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.”

2.      Illustration:

A careful mother I ought to be,
A little one is following me
I do not dare to go astray
For fear she’ll go the selfsame way.
I cannot once escape her eyes,
Whatever she sees me do, she tries.
Like me she says she’s going to be
That little one who follows me.
She thinks that I am good and fine,
Believes in every word of mine;
The base in me she must not see
That little one who follows me.
I must remember as I go
Through summer’s sun and winter’s snow
I am building for the years to be
That little one who follows me.

3.      Also, she never abandoned her children.  For example, she was at the cross of Jesus (cf. John 19:25).

C.     A good mother is one who loves both her husband and children.


(1)   Regarding godly mothers, God says (Prov. 31:28-30):

28 Her children rise up and call her blessed;

Her husband also, and he praises her:

29 "Many daughters have done well,

But you excel them all."

30 Charm is deceitful and beauty is passing,

But a woman who fears the LORD, she shall be praised.

(2)   Praise God for godly mothers!

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