I’m guessing it’s coming as no surprise Mother’s Day. Did you notice people started celebrating it on Facebook days ago.
Here we are: Mother’s Day. Today is a day to honor, celebrate, remember mothers.
We buy them flowers, cards, candy, gifts, take her out to eat, and in church we ask them to stand while we applaud, we tell her how special she is to us… We want to, at least for one day a year, show our mommas how much they mean to us… how much we appreciate them.
Hey, um…. that’s great and all, do that… I’m not here telling you to stop. But I’m here to ask you to do something more this year.
Truth is, these things, well, I’d like us to do them EVERY day and not just for mothers… but let’s be reasonable and at least start with today, Mother’s Day. What’s the thing I want you to do? I’ll say it right here near the start, three things: share, listen and ask.
First: Mommas, you have a story to share. A story we need to hear. Let’s be real: you have a life full of experiences, lessons, trials, struggles, triumphs…. and WE NEED TO HEAR THEM.
I’ve got a pretty good hunch that many of you are disagreeing with me right now. You’re pretty sure you don’t have a story worth telling.
But I’m sure. You have a story. We need to hear it!
How do I know? Spend any time on the internet and it doesn’t take long before you run into something entitled a little like this: “The 7 things no one told me about…” Fill in the blank there: pregnancy, labor, miscarriage, having a newborn, raising multiples, sending a child to college, burying your child, raising boys, dealing with discipline, getting your baby to sleep through the night, what to do when you don’t think you can do this whole mom thing…
You name it, and I assure you someone wrote a list saying no one ever told them about it.
That’s a shame.
Because, see here, you have a story to share that they need to hear.
You don’t have to write a book, start a blog, film a video, shout it from the rooftops… I mean, maybe you will but you don’t have to do all that. But you do have to be brave enough to share
And hey: what else did I say? We need to listen.
It doesn’t do any good for me to say you need to share if no one hears it. ‘Cause sometimes we say “no one told me” when what really happens is we didn’t listen. We have excuses you know: There are only so many facts my brain can remember.. I didn’t think I would ever need to know that… It didn’t seem that important at the time.
You should listen because you care about that momma. Her story matters. Not because of how it will help you (though it will) but because she matters. And that alone is reason enough to tune in and listen.
And the third? Let’s be better about asking. Asking because there are those with stories we need to hear who are waiting for someone to care enough to ask. Ask because there is a list of things you’ve wanted to know (how do you survive teething? Do you ever get to sleep though the night again? How do you face Mother’s Day while missing your mom or without your baby? How do I handle my child- now almost adult- moving back home from college?) Ask the questions even though they’re hard. Even though they may hurt. Even though you don’t want to be bothered. Even when you aren’t sure of what to say.
Okay, here’s the deal: there are are plenty of just plain awful things we shouldn’t say and plenty of people we have no business asking. But listen: today I’m not talking about some random mom in the street or a mother you barely ever speak to but I’m talking about your mommas. The mom who raised you, the mom next to you in the pew, the mother next door, the mom in your small group. We’ve got to risk that some questions are going to hurt. When that happens, you can say that it hurt. They can apologize and you both can learn something. And when real, genuine questions are asked it opens the door for sharing.
There are times this whole Mother’s Day thing seems awful fake, a bit too commercial. I’m thinking the founders of Mother’s Day might agree. And you may be thinking, “Shouldn’t we show mothers that we care everyday?” Yup, we should. But it was the first few books of the Bible we see how God knew us forgetful people needed times set aside to remember. And today that remembering comes in the form of Mother’s Day.
And when we’re genuine enough to ask…. when we’re caring enough to listen… When you’re brave enough to share you testify to Romans 8:28 and show how, in this always falling apart world, it is possible that God is working all things to our good. You’re living out 1 Peter 3:15 of always be ready to give the answer for the hope you have. In that way you can share with them the lifeline of hope they so desperately need.
When you’re really listening you’ll learn to exemplify Romans 12:15 as you rejoice with those who rejoice and mourn with those who mourn.
What better way celebrate Mother’s Day than living out the word of God?!
So what do you think? What can you share? How can you be sure to listen? Who can you ask? Can you do that this Mother’s Day?
Let’s give it a try and find a newness in saying, “Happy Mother’s Day!”
For me? I’d say this blog has been my way of sharing my heart. Check out these Mother’s Day posts (and a ton of other posts as well).
Have something you want to ask? I’m here. I say it a lot and I mean it: send me a message, shoot me an email, give me a call.