One hundred two years ago, President Woodrow Wilson issued a presidential proclamation establishing the first national Mother’s Day to celebrate America’s mothers. Wilson petitioned Congress to designate the second Sunday of May as a special day for mothers to be celebrated and honored.
Long before our nation recognized the importance of honoring mothers, the writer of the Proverbs presented choice words of appreciation and celebration. On Mother’s Day 2016, these words from Proverbs 31:26-30 will be recited from numerous pulpits across the country.
When she speaks she has something worthwhile to say, and she always says it kindly. She keeps an eye on everyone in her household, and keeps them all busy and productive. Her children respect and bless her; her husband joins in with words of praise: “Many women have done wonderful things, but you’ve outclassed them all!” Charm can mislead and beauty soon fades. The woman to be admired and praised is the woman who lives in the Fear-of-God. Give her everything she deserves! Festoon her life with praises! (Proverbs 31:26-30 MSG)
Recently, a website called “The Disciplers” shared the following story about mothers.
“A teacher gave her class of second graders a lesson on the magnet and what it does. The next day in a written test, she included this question: “My full name has six letters. The first one is M. I pick up things. What am I?” When the test papers were turned in, the teacher was astonished to find that almost 50 percent of the students answered the question with the word Mother.”
What if the teacher would have said, “My name starts with F, would their response have been Father?” I highly doubt it. Maybe Frieda, Farrah, Fallon, but not Father.
As the Proverb writer exhorts, let us give our Mothers “Everything she deserves.” Mothers and discipleship go hand in hand. It is my opinion that these two terms are inseparable. Take a moment to closely look at the Proverbs 31 passage. Here is how the woman (mother) is described:
- She speaks wisely.
- She models kindness.
- No one gets out of her sight.
- She teaches responsibility.
- Her children appreciate and bless her.
- Her husband praises and thanks her.
- She is in a category all her own.
- She fears the Lord.
- She is worthy of praise.
There are two additional characteristics I would like to add to this list. Mothers are influencers and disciplers. President George Washington said, “My mother was the most beautiful woman I ever saw. All I am I owe to my mother. I attribute my success in life to the moral, intellectual and physical education I received from her.” President Abraham Lincoln said, “I remember my mother’s prayers and they have always followed me. They have clung to me all my life.” What noble words by men who shaped this nation.
On August 14, 1981, Morrow Graham, mother of Evangelist Billy Graham, left this life in her sleep and entered heaven. According to Graham, “When word came, I wept and yet rejoiced at the same time. Of all the people I have ever known, she had the greatest influence on me. I am sure one reason that the Lord has directed and safeguarded me, as well as Ruth and the children, through the years was the prayers of my mother and father.” Let me encourage you to read Dr. Graham’s tribute to his mother. She was a powerful woman of God, an influencer and discipler.
Happy Mother’s Day!
 Illustrations for Mother’s Day, Ptr. Vince, http://thedisciplers.com/illustrations-fo-mothers-day/
 Billy Graham: A Tribute To His Mother, http://billygraham.org/story/billy-graham-a-tribute-to-his-mother/
Bill Terry is the National Director for Men’s Ministries and the Assistant Director for Discipleship Ministries. Bill resides in Oklahoma City with his lovely wife Rita, where they will celebrate 45 years of marriage in 2016. He is the proud head of an extended family that includes two sons Gregory and Rodney, daughters-in-law Holly and Brec, granddaughters Grace, Annie, Emily and Elena and grandson Adam Gregory.