Mothers' Day 2019

From Fr. Tony Kadavil's Collection:

# 1: Mother’s sacrificial love: On Sunday, August 16, 1987, Northwest Airlines flight 225 crashed just after taking off from the Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport. One hundred fifty-five people were killed. One survived with injuries: a 4-year-old from Tempe, Arizona, named Cecelia. News accounts say when rescuers found Cecelia they did not believe she had been on the plane. Investigators first assumed Cecelia had been a passenger in one of the cars on the highway onto which the airliner crashed. But when the passenger register for the flight was checked, there was Cecelia's name. "Cecelia survived because, as the plane was falling, Cecelia's mother, Paula Chican, unbuckled her own seat belt, got down on her knees in front of her daughter, wrapped her arms and body around Cecelia, and then would not let her go." She was a real mother. That sounds to me like a metaphor of the love of God. 
# 2: "How are you able to stand all the pain of family rejection?" There was an interesting story on CNN not long ago about a twenty-five-year-old man in San Francisco who was dying of AIDS. And you know how he got it and I do too. Because of that his father had completely disowned him. His mother was dead. So there was nobody. The man looked like he could not weigh over a hundred pounds and had the look of death on his face. The reporter asked him how he was able to stand all of the pain, not only of death, but the pain of family rejection. He gave an interesting answer. He said, “I stand it by closing my eyes and imagining that I will awaken in the arms of my mother. I know that she will never leave my side.” I tell you friends, long after some fathers have disowned their children a mother will still be there. There is a tenacity about mothers.

# 3: Mother has the authority to correct: You may be grown-up now, but to your mother, you are still fair game for correction. When his pager went off during a council meeting, Knoxville, Tenn. Police Chief Phil Keith was startled to see that the call was from his mother. Concerned, he rushed to the press table and phoned her. "Phil Keith, are you chewing gum?" asked his mom, who had been watching the council meeting on cable TV. "Yes, ma'am," answered Chief Keith. “Well, it looks awful," his mother said. "Spit it out." Keith dutifully removed the gum and went back to his meeting.

# 4: Humor: Mothers Can Be ShrewdFormer president Jimmy Carter spoke at Southern Methodist University and related an incident that occurred after he had left the White House. A woman reporter came to Plains, Georgia, to interview his mother in relation to an article about Mr. Carter and his family. His mother really didn't want to be interviewed but was being gracious. So, when the reporter knocked at her door, Mrs. Carter invited her in. The reporter asked some hard questions and actually was rather aggressive and rude. "I want to ask you a question," she said. "Your son ran for the presidency on the premise that he would always tell the truth. Has he ever lied?" Mrs. Carter said, "I think he's truthful; I think you can depend on his word." The reporter again asked if he had ever lied in his entire life. His mother said, "Well, I guess maybe he's told a little white lie." "Ah, see there!" the reporter exclaimed. "He's lied! If he told a white lie, he has lied." The reporter was still not satisfied and asked, "What is a white lie?" And then Lillian Carter said, "It's like a moment ago when you knocked on the door and I went to the door and said I was glad to see you."

# 5: "Let the boy go home with his mother. A. Lincoln." During the Civil War a Confederate Major by the name of Horace Harmon Lurton was taken prisoner by the Union forces. In prison, Major Lurton developed tuberculosis. His mother came to visit him and was alarmed by his condition. She knew her son would die if he stayed behind bars. So, Mrs. Lurton traveled to Washington to beg mercy from the only person she thought could help her, the President of the United States, Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln was so moved by this mother's concern that he sat down and wrote a note to the Union forces in charge of her son's prison. It said simply, "Let the boy go home with his mother. A. Lincoln." Horace Harmon Lurton was released from prison. He recovered from his tuberculosis and went on become a distinguished lawyer and the chief justice of the Supreme Court of his state.

# 6: Wherever mother is that is where home is:  A priest was visiting a family who had just moved to Memphis from Baltimore, Maryland. The pastor asked the man if he was originally from Baltimore and he said: “No, my family transferred around quite frequently and there is really no one place that I can say was home.” The he said something I shall never forget. He said: “I suppose that wherever mother was that is where home was.” Wherever mother is that is where home is. Maybe a lot of us can identify with that. A house is a physical place. A home is where our loved ones are gathered.

#7: My mother’s Bible: Axelrod shares this story about a magnificent mom: Four preachers were discussing their favorite translations of the Bible. The first one said, "I like the King James Version because of its beautiful English." Another said, "I like the New American Standard version because it is closer to the original Greek and Hebrew." The third one declared, "I like the Good News version because it's so easy to read. The fourth minister was silent for a moment then said, "I like my mother's translation best." The other three men were surprised. They said, "I didn't know your mother made a translation of the Bible." "Yes," he replied. "She translated it into everyday life. And it was the most beautiful and convincing translation I ever saw."

# 8: My mother’s God: Two college students went to hear the notorious agnostic Robert Ingersoll lecture in his heyday. As they walked down the street after the lecture, one said to the other, “Well, I guess he knocked the props out from under Christianity, didn’t he?” The other said, “No, I don’t think so. Ingersoll did not explain my mother’s life, and until he can explain my mother’s life, I will stand by my mother’s God. [James S. Hewett, Illustrations Unlimited (Tyndale, 1972), p. 38].

# 9:  How did God create the first mom? By the time the Lord made the woman he was into his sixth day of creation and working overtime. An angel approached and said, "Why are you spending so much time on this creature?" And the Lord answered and said, “I am making a woman who is to become the mother of all mankind.  So she should have some special features: 1) Six pairs of hands, five of them invisible. 2)  Three pairs of eyes, one visible pair in the front, the second and the third invisible pairs at the back and at the sides of her head.  3) A large and elastic heart. 4) A lap that can hold three children at one time and that disappears when she stands up. The angel said, “I can guess why a mom should have six pairs of hands and a large heart, but why three pairs of eyes?  God said, “One pair of invisible x-ray eyes at the sides to see through closed doors when she knocks at the door asks, "What are you kids doing?"  And she already knows what is going on inside.  The second invisible pair at the back of her head is to see what she is not supposed to see but has to see as a responsible mother.  And of course, the third pair of normal eyes in the front is to look at a child when he makes a mistake and say without uttering a word, “Dear, I understand you, I love you.” “Any other specifications?” the angel asked.  God said, “She should be able to run on black coffee and leftovers.  She should have a kiss that can cure anything from a bruised leg to a broken heart from a disappointing love affair.  She should be able to heal herself when she is sick.  She should feed a family of six on one pound of hamburger, and finally she should have eyes that shed tears of joy and pride, tears of sadness, tears of disappointment and tears of old age aches and loneliness.”  The Angel was impressed. "You are a genius, Lord! This woman is amazing.” Is this not the picture of your mom?  [Adapted from Erma Bombeck’s essay entitled, When God Created Women].

10) Home is where mother is:  St. Teresa of Calcutta (Mother Teresa) relates this incident about a boy. “Once I picked up a child and took him to our Children’s Home; we gave him a bath, clean clothes, and everything. After a day, the child ran away. Somebody else found him, but again he ran away. Then I said to the Sisters: 'Please follow the child and see where he goes when he runs away.' And the child ran away the third time. There under the tree was the mother. She had put a small earthenware vessel on two stones and was cooking something she had picked out of the dustbin. The Sisters asked the child: ‘Why did you run away from the Home?’ And the child said, ‘This is my home because this is where my mother is.'" True! Wherever our mothers are, there our home is.

 (John Rose in John’s Sunday Homilies). 

11) "Way to go, Mom. Way to go!" A man was boarding an airplane one day. As he came on board, he happened to notice that the head of the plane's cockpit flight crew was a woman. That was no problem. Still, it was a new experience for him. As he found his seat, he noticed three persons sitting immediately behind him. One was a young boy about six or seven years of age. Next to him was a man in his early thirties. And next to the man was a woman in her early sixties. The man could not help overhearing the conversation among these three persons as the plane made final plans for departure from the gate. It was not long before he realized that they were the woman pilot's family. The boy was her son. The man was her husband. And the older woman was her mother. Suddenly he realized why the family was on the plane. This was the first time the woman pilot had been the head of a flight crew! They were there to honor her promotion.  The plane taxied down the runway and poised itself for takeoff. The engines began to roar, and the plane gained speed quickly. Within seconds they were airborne. As the plane began to ascend the bank to the south, the six-year-old boy began to applaud! "Way to go, Mom. Way to go!" (Norman Neaves) This morning we are applauding our Moms. "Way to go, Moms, way to go!" Truly, today's Mom deserves all the support and applause she we can give her. 

12) Rudyard Kipling wrote:

If I were hanged on the highest hill, I know whose love would follow me still.
Mother of mine. Mother of mine.
If I were drowned in the deepest sea, I know whose tears would come down to me.
Mother of mine, Mother of mine.
If I were damned by body and soul, I know whose prayers would make me whole.
Mother of mine, mother of mine

13) Magnet or mother? 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".

14) Economics of Mother’s Day: Nearly three-quarters of the nation's 103.4 million women aged 15 and older are mothers. 23% have one child; 35% have two; 21% have three; 21% have four or more. Mother's Day trounces poor Father's Day by a long shot. Hallmark estimates that 150 million Mother's Day cards will be sent this year (but only 95 million Father's Day cards), making Mother's Day the third largest greeting card holiday of the year. U.S. Americans spend an average of $105 on Mother's Day gifts, $90 on Father's Day gifts. The phone rings more often on Mother's Day than Father's Day. (Business Week survey, as reported in "Happy Mother's Day," The Boomer Report, May 1998, 3.) The busiest day of the year at car washes? The Saturday before Mother's Day. What Mom thinks still matters. Even if it is a fallacy, we do like to think of Mother's Day as "Mom's day off." Usually this takes the form of dining out for one of the three meals. Making her breakfast in bed. Maybe doing some of the more odious chores that have stacked up like cordwood around the house.

 15) Day Care: What Is the Difference? Only one long-term study has ever been done on the effects of Day Care and this, done by Moore in 1975 and in it, the  findings were largely negative. Boys reared in substitute care were more aggressive, nonconforming and less interested in academic subjects than boys reared at home. Girls reared in substitute care were nostalgic about childhood, while girls reared at home by their mothers were active, positive in their attitudes toward the opposite sex and well-adjusted socially. Even Harvard's Kagan, himself an advocate for Day Care, has said of Day care's Children, "I think they will be different, but I can't say how." (Brenda Hunter in Homemade, October, 1987).  

16) Who is the greatest preacher in your family? Dr. G. Campbell Morgan, was a British evangelistpreacher and a leading Bible scholar. He had 4 sons, and they were all preachers. Someone once came into the drawing room when all the family was there. They thought they would see what Howard, one of the sons, was made of so they asked him this question: "Howard, who is the greatest preacher in your family?" Howard had a great admiration for his father and he looked straight across at him, and then without a moment's hesitation he answered, "Mother." (A. Edersheim, Sketches of Jewish Social Life, Eerdmans, p. 139). 

17) "A sixth." A teacher asked a boy this question: "Suppose your mother baked a pie and there were seven of you your parents and five children. What part of the pie would you get?" "A sixth," replied the boy. "I'm afraid you don't know your fractions," said the teacher. "Remember, there are seven of you." "Yes, teacher," said the boy, "but you don't know my mother. Mother would say she didn't want any pie." (Bits and Pieces, June 1990, p. 10). 

18) In her footsteps: It was a busy day in Costa Mesa, a California home. But then, with ten children and one on the way, every day was a bit hectic for Davida Dalton. On this particular day, however, she was having trouble doing even the routine chores-all because of one little boy. Len, who was three at that time, was on her heels no matter where she went. Whenever she stopped to do something and turned back around, she would trip over him. Several times, she patiently suggested fun activities to keep him occupied “Wouldn’t you like to play on the swing set?” she asked him. But he simply smiled an innocent smile and said, “Oh, that’s all right, Mommy. I’d rather be in here with you.” Then he continued to bounce happily along behind her. After stepping on his toes for the fifth time, she began to lose her patience and insisted that he go outside and play with the other children. When she angrily asked him why he was acting this way, he looked up at her with sweet green eyes and said, “Well, Mummy, in Sunday school my teacher told me to walk in Jesus’ footsteps. But I can’t see him, so I’m walking in yours.” She gathered him in her arms and held him close. Tears of love and humility spilled over from the prayer that grew in her heart, a prayer of thanks for the simple, yet beautiful perspective of a three-year-old boy.
(John Rose in John’s Sunday Homilies; added on Dec 18, 2012).

19) Scatter my ashes in the local Wal-Mart:  A single mother who raised her only child lavished her whole love on her only daughter and spent her health and wealth, time and talents on the girl’s upbringing.  But the daughter dated and married a drug addict against her mother’s warnings and wishes. As a well-employed girl, she never cared to visit her mother.  So on her deathbed the mother instructed her attorney to cremate her body and to scatter the ashes in the local Wal-Mart of the city where her daughter lived. He enquired why. The mother said: “Then I will be able to see my daughter visiting me every week!”

20) Actor Kirk Douglas' mother: I read something recently about actor Kirk Douglas' mother.  Douglas, for years one of Hollywood's most prominent stars, but now known chiefly as Michael Douglas' father, remembers his mother as a woman who overflowed with encouragement for her children.  When he was in his mother's presence, Kirk never doubted that he was special and beloved.  He recalls a visit he made to his mother's house not long after his first big movie came out.  Kirk's mother had invited all her friends over to meet him.  When she introduced Kirk, she announced, "This is my son.  The earth trembles when they mention his name." [Kirk Douglas, My Stroke of Luck (New York: HarperCollins, 2002), p. 124.] Now that's a proud mother! Does it make a difference when people love you and believe in you and encourage you? Of course, it does. I feel for children brought up by negative parents--critical, demanding, quick to admonish, slow to praise. I see people every day who are scarred by parents who could give them everything except what they needed most--unconditional love and acceptance. 

21) Ungrateful children: One day an African mother left her baby in the house as she went down to the river to wash clothes.  After some time she heard screaming and saw smoke.  As she ran toward the village, she saw that her house was on fire.  "My baby, my baby" she cried.  With no thought for her safety she dashed into the house to save her baby.  Just as she was leaving the burning thatched roof fell on her but she managed to get the baby out safely.  She herself was badly burned and badly disfigured.  This same mother used all of her energy to take care of her child, to educate him and even to send him to medical school.  Her boy was a great success but never returned to the village.  After some years the mother wanted to see her son, so she went to Kinshasa.  With the help of friends, she found the office of her son the doctor.  She knocked on the door and a nurse opened it but was shocked by the presence of the disfigured woman.  "Yes?"  "I want to see my son".  "Who is your son?"  "The doctor".  The nurse left the woman outside the office and went to ask the doctor if he could see his mother.  "My mother?  What does she look like?" "She is horribly disfigured."  "In that case," said the doctor, "she cannot be my mother who is very beautiful.  Send her away." (Fr. Bobby Jose).
22) Magnet or mother: 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, and I pick up things. What am I?” When the grades were all in the teacher was astounded to find that almost fifty percent had written in the word Mother! I heard about a father who was trying to explain the concept of marriage to his 4-year-old daughter. He got out their wedding album, thinking visual images would help, and explained the entire wedding service to her. When he was finished, he asked if she had any questions. She pointed to a picture of the wedding party and asked, “Daddy, is that when mommy came to work for us?

MOTHER’S DAY JOKES # 1: A four-year-old and a six-year-old presented their mom with a houseplant. They had used their own money to buy it and she was thrilled. The older of them said with a sad face, "There was a bouquet at the flower shop that we wanted to give you. It was real pretty but it was too expensive. It had a ribbon on it that said ‘Rest In Peace,’ and we thought it would be just perfect since you are always asking for a little peace so that you can rest.

#2: One Mom had a most revealing experience on the Mother’s Day.  Her two children ordered her to stay in bed. She lay there looking forward to being brought her breakfast, as the inviting smell of bacon floated up from the kitchen. At last the children called her downstairs. She found them sitting at the table, each with a large plate of bacon and eggs: “As a Mother’s Day surprise,” one explained, “we’ve cooked our own breakfast.”

# 3: Angie, 8 years old, wrote: "Dear Mother, I’m going to make dinner for you on Mother’s Day. It’s going to be a surprise. P.S. I hope you like pizza & popcorn."

# 4: Did you hear about the 5-yr. old boy who said to his mother, “Mommy, I love you, and when I grow up I’m going to get you an electric iron, an electric stove, and electric toaster and an electric chair.” (The boy did not know that the last one was used for electrocuting criminals).

# 5: Tony Campolo says that his wife is a brilliant woman. She has a Ph.D. and is capable of pursuing a very profitable career. But she elected to stay home with her children when they were young. Her decision didn’t bother her at all except when other women would ask, “What do you do?” She would answer, “I’m a homemaker. I stay home and take care of my children and my husband.” They would usually respond with “Oh” and then ignore her from then on. So Mrs. Campolo came up with this response when she was asked what she did: “I’m socializing two Homo-sapiens in Judeo-Christian values so they’ll appropriate the eschatological values of utopia. What do you do?” They would often blurt out “I’m a doctor” or “I’m a lawyer” and then wander off with a dazed look in their eyes.    

# 6: Little children can come up with some very interesting ideas. Listen to what some children wrote to their mothers for Mother’s Day. Robert wrote: "I got you a turtle for Mother’s Day. I hope you like the turtle better than the snake I got you last year." Eileen wrote: "Dear Mother, I wish Mother’s Day wasn’t always on Sunday. It would be better if it were on Monday so we wouldn’t have to go to school." Little Diane wrote: "I hope you like the flowers I got you for Mother’s Day. I picked them myself when Mr. Smith wasn’t looking." And how about this one from Carol? "Dear Mother, here are two aspirins. Have a happy Mother’s Day!”

# 7: 4-year-old wisdom: When your mom is mad at your dad, don’t let her brush your hair. You can’t trust fighting dogs to watch your food.

#8: First grader’s mom: For weeks a six-year old lad kept telling his first-grade teacher about the baby brother or sister that was expected at his house. One day the mother allowed the boy to feel the movements of the unborn child. The six-year old was obviously impressed but made no comment. Furthermore, he stopped telling his teacher about the impending event. The teacher finally sat the boy on her lap and said, "Tommy, whatever has become of that baby brother or sister you were expecting at home?" Tommy burst into tears and confessed, "I think Mommy ate it!"

#9: A small boy is sent to bed by his mother...
[Five minutes later]
"Mom..." "What?"
"I'm thirsty. Can you bring me a glass of water?"
"No. You had your chance. Lights out."
[Five minutes later]
"Mom..." "WHAT?"
"I'm THIRSTY...Can I have a glass of water??"
"I told you NO! If you ask again I'll have to spank you!!"
[Five minutes later]
"Mommm..." "WHAT??!!"
"When you come in to spank me, can you bring me a glass of water?"

# 10: STEVEN (age 3) hugged and kissed his Mom good night. “I love you so much that when you die I'm going to bury you outside my bedroom window.”

#11: A father came home from work just before supper and was met by his five-year-old daughter on the sidewalk outside his house. The little girl was not smiling. "Is something wrong, honey?" he asked. "Yes," she said, "all day long I’ve been having trouble with your wife."  

# 12: Getting along with Mom: A cartoon shows two boys walking to school, discussing their parents. One of them says to the other one, "I've figured out a system for getting along with my Mom. She tells me what to do and I do it."

# 13: G.K. Chesterton once wrote: "Drunk or sober, she is still my mother."

Mother’s Day Blessing(
Heavenly Father, Bless all those You have entrusted with motherhood. Inspire them to follow the example of Mary, the Mother of Our Lord, and follow her in her fidelity, humility, and selfless love. May all mothers receive Your Grace abundantly in this life, and may they look forward to eternal joy in Your presence in Heaven. Amen.

A Prayer for Mothers

Our mothers are earthbound angels
Sent by God above
To give our lives direction
And fill our hearts with love.
They have no wings or halos
And yet they are divine,
For years of toil and sacrifice
Have rendered them sublime.
So, mothers, may God bless you
Wherever you may be,
For the gift of love you gave us
Lives on eternally!

Thank you mother: Thank you, dear Lord, for our mothers: who were brave enough to give us birth, who loved us through many growing-up years, who taught us about God and love and being good, who often got no thanks, whose ears could hear the slightest cry, whose eyes didn't miss much either, whose hands held and bathed and picked up, whose hearts were often broken, who always forgave and forgot, who encouraged us when things went badly, who always had time to listen to us, who worked so hard to make things go, who made the world so much better -- who deserve our love on Mother's Day and every day even for eternity. Amen.

An Irish mother’s funny letter to her son

 Dear Son,

I'm writing this letter slow because I know you can't read fast. We don't live where we did when you left home. Your dad read in the newspaper that most accidents happen within 20 miles from your home, so we moved. I won't be able to send you the address because the last Irish family that lived here took the house numbers when they moved so that they wouldn't have to change their address. This place is really nice.  It even has a washing machine. I'm not sure it works so well though: last week I put a load in and pulled the chain and haven't seen them since. The weather isn't bad here.  It only rained twice last week; the first time for three days and the second time for four days.

About that coat you wanted me to send you, your Uncle Stanley said it would be too heavy to send in the mail with the buttons on, so we cut them off and put them in the pockets. John locked his keys in the car yesterday.  We were really worried because it took him two hours to get me and your father out. Your sister had a baby this morning; but I haven't found out what it is yet so I don't know if you are an aunt or an uncle..... Uncle Ted fell in a whiskey vat last week.  Some men tried to pull him out, but he fought them off and drowned. We had him cremated and he burned for three days. Three of your friends went off a bridge in a pick-up truck. Ralph was driving.  He rolled down the window and swam to safety. Your other two friends were in back. They drowned because they couldn't get the tailgate down. There isn't much more news at this time.  Nothing much has happened. Love, Mum. P.S.  I was going to send you some money but the envelope was already sealed.

I Am a Mother! 

The officer at the driving license counter asked the lady: "What is your occupation?"
 The woman, seeking a renewal of her license seemed to be puzzled.
so the officer said "Ma'am, are you employed, have your own business or..." 

"Oh yes!' The woman replied, "I do have a full time occupation. I am a mother!

The officer rolled his eyes: "We don't have 'mother' as an option for occupation. I'll write it down as 'housewife'. That takes care of all questions." 

This had happened long ago, and was forgotten. Years later, when I (the woman in the story, if you hadn't guessed) went to get my license, the public relations officer was a somewhat pompous woman.

"Your occupation?" she asked in a rather authoritative tone. 

I just had a moment of inspiration and replied "I am a researcher in the field of child development, nutrition and inter-personal relationships."

The lady officer stared at me in amazement. 

I calmly repeated my statement and she wrote it down verbatim. Then, unable to conceal her curiosity, she politely asked "What exactly do you do in your profession, ma'am?" 

I was feeling good about having described my occupation so calmly and confidently, so I replied "My research projects have been going on for a number of years [mothers NEVER retire]. My research is conducted in the laboratory as well as in the field. I have two bosses [one is God and the other is my entire family]. I have received two honors in this field [a son and a daughter].

My topic is considered to be the most difficult part of sociology.

[All moms will agree]. I have to work more than 14 hours every day. Sometimes even 24 hours are not enough and the challenges are tougher than many other professions. My compensation is in terms of mental satisfaction rather than money."    

I could see that the officer was thoroughly impressed. After completing the licensing formalities, she came to the door to see me off. 

This new viewpoint about my occupation made me feel much better on my way back home.

 I was welcomed by my 5-year old research assistant at the door. My new project (my 6-month old baby) was energetically practicing her "music." 

I had earned a small victory over the governmental red tape today. I was no longer merely "a mother." Instead, I was now a highly-placed functionary in a service vital for mankind - motherhood!

"Mother " - isn't it a great title? Fit to be added to the nameplate on the door?

 By this standard, grandmothers deserve to be called senior research officers, and great-grandmothers qualify as research directors. Aunts and other ladies of that age group can be called research facilitators!

Kids answer the question on their mothers:
Why did God make mothers?

1. She's the only one who knows where the Scotch tape is.
2. Mostly to clean the house.
3. To help us out of there when we were getting born.

How did God make mothers?

1. He used dirt, just like for the rest of us.
2. Magic plus super powers and a lot of stirring.
3. God made my Mom just the same like he made me. He just used bigger parts.

What ingredients are mothers made of?

1. God makes mothers out of clouds and angel hair and everything nice in the world and one dab of mean.
2. They had to get their start from men's bones. Then they mostly use string, I think.

Why did God give you your mother and not some other mom?

1. We're related.
2. God knew she likes me a lot more than other people's moms like me.

What kind of little girl was your mom?

1. My mom has always been my mom and none of that other stuff.
2. I don't know because I wasn't there, but my guess would be pretty bossy.
3. They say she used to be nice.

What did mom need to know about dad before she married him?

1. His last name.
2. She had to know his background. Like is he a crook? Does he get drunk on beer?
3. Does he make at least $800 a year? Did he say NO to drugs and YES to chores?

Why did your Mom marry your dad?

1. My dad makes the best spaghetti in the world. And my Mom eats a lot.
2. She got too old to do anything else with him.
3. My grandma says that Mom didn't have her thinking cap on.

Who's the boss at your house?

1. Mom doesn't want to be boss, but she has to because dad's such a goof ball.
2. Mom. You can tell by room inspection. She sees the stuff under the bed.
3. I guess Mom is, but only because she has a lot more to do than dad.

What's the difference between moms and dads?

1. Moms work at work and work at home, and dads just go to work at work.
2. Moms know how to talk to teachers without scaring them.
3. Dads are taller and stronger, but moms have all the real power 'cause that's who you got to ask if you want to sleep over at your friend's.
4. Moms have magic; they make you feel better without medicine.

What does your Mom do in her spare time?

1. Mothers don't do spare time.
2. To hear her tell it, she pays bills all day long.

What would it take to make your Mom perfect?

1. On the inside she's already perfect. Outside, I think some kind of plastic surgery.
2. Diet. You know, her hair. I'd dye it, maybe blue.

If you could change one thing about your Mom, what would it be?

1. She has this weird thing about me keeping my room clean. I'd get rid of that.
2. I'd make my Mom smarter. Then she would know it was my sister who did it and not me.
3. I would like for her to get rid of those invisible eyes on her back of her head.

Mom, the good shepherd

My mom is my shepherd; I shall not want. She makes me lie down under cool, downy comforters. She watches me play beside still waters. She restores my soul.
She leads me in paths of respect, responsibility, and goodness, for I am her namesake!
Yea, even though I walk past monsters in the dark, I will not be scared, because my mom is always near me. Her hands and her voice, they comfort me.

Mama sets the table and cheerfully calls me to dinner even in front of big, mean bullies.
She anoints my skinned knees and broken heart with kisses. She smiles and throws me a towel when my cup runneth over.
Surely God's peace, power, and mercy shall uphold me all the days of my life, for my Mother taught me to dwell in the house of God forever.

Source: Christian Education 101: A Child Learns to Trust by Laurie Hays Coffman

A strong woman works out every day to keep her body in shape, but a woman of strength kneels in prayer to keep her soul in shape.
 A strong woman isn't afraid of anything, but a woman of strength shows her courage in the midst of fear.
A strong woman won't let anyone get the best of her, but a woman of strength gives the best of her to everyone.
  A strong woman walks sure-footedly, but a woman of strength knows God will catch her when she falls.
  A strong woman wears the look of confidence on her face, but a woman of strength wears grace.
  A strong woman has faith that she is strong enough for the journey, but a woman of strength has Faith that in the journey she will become strong.

I must candidly confess that when I was in seminary the 16th chapter of Paul's letter to the Romans didn't do much for me. It struck me as being boring, nothing more than a long presentation of people's names, most of whom I could not pronounce; I usually skimmed over that part so I could get to what I considered to be the real Gospel. Over the years I have greatly changed my attitude about this particular chapter and I have discovered that there is much more to it than I had first imagined. For example, it is interesting to note that of the twenty-six people who Paul singles out for his personal greeting, six were women. Now that strikes me as being rather interesting, since Paul has frequently gotten a bum rap for being a male chauvinist. I think it also shows us the tremendous influence that women had in the early church. In the male oriented first century Palestine, it is telling that Paul could not describe the church without mentioning the significant role of women.
Verse 13 of chapter 16 is particularly interesting and it is one that scholars have struggled with over the centuries. Paul writes: "Give my greetings to Rufus, chosen in the Lord, and his mother and mine." Now this statement could be taken two ways. It could mean that Paul had two distinct women in mind--the mother of Rufus and his own personal mother. Or, he could be saying: "I salute Rufus and his mother, who is like a mother to me." If that is what he meant, and most Biblical scholars agree that that is indeed what he meant, then it raises some interesting speculation. When and where did Paul meet Rufus' mother? Did she nurse him through some serious illness?
Did she receive him into her home for an extended stay during his missionary journeys? How did this woman and Paul form such a close bond that he refers to her fondly as being like his mother? Mark tells us that Simon of Cyrene, the man who carried Jesus cross, had two sons: Alexander and Rufus. Was this the same Rufus to whom Paul was speaking? If that is true, his mother would be Simon of Syrene's wife. No one knows for sure who this remarkable woman was who served as a mother figure for the great Paul. But it really makes no difference, because what he writes makes an excellent springboard for a Mother's Day sermon...
1. First, mothers should be saluted for their tenacious love.
2. Secondly, mothers should be saluted for the tremendous impact they have.
3. Third, mothers should be saluted because where they are, that is where home is.

A man was boarding an airplane one day. As he came on board, he happened to notice that the head of the plane's cockpit flight crew was a woman. That was no problem. Still, it was a new experience for him.

As he found his seat, he noticed three persons sitting immediately behind him. One was a young boy about six or seven years of age. Next to him was a man in his early thirties. And next to the man was a woman in her early sixties.

The man could not help overhearing the conversation among these three persons as the plane made final plans for departure from the gate. It was not long before he realized that they were the woman pilot's family. The boy was her son. The man was her husband. And the older woman was her mother. Suddenly he realized why the family was on the plane. This was the first time the woman pilot had been the head of a flight crew! They were there to honor her promotion.

The plane taxied down the runway and poised itself for takeoff. The engines began to roar, and the plane gained speed quickly. Within seconds they were airborne. As the plane began to ascend the bank to the south, the six-year-old boy began to applaud! "Way to go, Mom. Way to go!" (1)

This morning we are applauding our Moms. "Way to go, Moms, way to go!" Truly, today's Mom deserves all the support and applause she can get.

Our text this morning suggests that God is like a loving Mom, and a loving Dad as well. Jesus uses the analogy of the Good Shepherd, but he could be speaking of the good parent just as easily. He says, "My sheep recognize my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life and they shall never perish. No one shall snatch them away from me, for my Father has given them to me, and He is more powerful than anyone else, so no one can kidnap them from me." (NIV)

On this day when we honor our mothers and celebrate the significance of the Christian family, what are some of the analogies we could draw between the love of a parent and the love of God?
I. The Love of God Is a Personal Kind of Love
II. The Love of God Is a Giving Kind of Love.
III. God's Love Never Quits.
All Those Preliminaries

In an old Peanuts strip, Peppermint Patty and Violet are reflecting on being a grandmother. After Patty declares that she would like to be a grandmother, Violet agrees and says it would be nice because all they have to do is "sit and rock" (not quite the case, is it?) The girls then decide that the trouble with being a grandmother is that first you have to be a wife and then a mother...and Violet sighs, "I know's all those preliminaries that get me!"

Adapted from Peanuts. Original strip run March 13, 1950. Reprinted in 2004 in The Complete Peanuts: The Definitive Collection of Charles M. Schulz's Comic Strip Masterpiece 1950-1952.
When you are a mother, you are never really alone in your thoughts. A mother always has to think twice, once for herself and once for her child.

Sophia Loren, Women and Beauty
Who Am I? - Mother

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.

The Most Important Job in the World

Dr. Tony Campolo is a well-known and highly-respected, inspirational speaker. Over the last several years, Tony Campolo has spent much of his time traveling around the world on speaking tours.

Meanwhile, his wife, Peggy, has chosen to stay home and give herself and all that she has to the "Bringing Up" of their two children, Bart and Lisa. On those rare occasions when Peggy does travel with Tony, she finds herself engaged in conversations with some of the most accomplished, impressive, influential, sophisticated people in the world.

After one such trip, Peggy told Tony that sometimes as she visits with these powerful people... she finds herself feeling intimidated and sometimes even questioning her own self-worth. Tony said to her: "Well, honey, why don't you come up with something you could say when you meet people that will let them know that you strongly value what you do and you feel that it is dramatically, urgent and crucial and important.

Well, not long after that, Tony and Peggy Campolo were at a party... when a woman said to Peggy in a rather condescending tone, "Well, my dear, what do you do?" Tony Campolo heard his wife say:

"I am nurturing two Homo Sapiens into the dominant values of the Judaeo-Christian tradition in order that they might become instruments for the transformation of the social order into the kind of eschatological utopia God envisioned from the beginning of time."

And the other woman said:

"O, my, I'm just a lawyer."

I like that story because it reminds us that there are a lot of important jobs in the world today but not one of them is more important than the job of being a mother.

Tony Campolo adapted by James Moore, Collected Sermons,
What's a Good Mother Like?

Judith Viorst once wrote an essay based on interviews she had with children. The subject was "What's a good mother like?"

Viorst reports that the children expected their mother to get angry from time to time. "She has to," said Ted, "or she'll faint from holding it in."

"But it's best to remember," said Randy, "that when your mother starts to act real weird, you have to look scared and serious. Don't giggle. When mommies are mad, they get madder if you giggle."

"My mommy got so mad," said Megan, "that she yanked the plate off the table and all the mashed potatoes flew into the air." "And why," Viorst asked, pretending she'd never heard of such shocking behavior, "why would a mother do a thing like that?"

"Well," said Megan, "she told my older brother, Mike, he's 11 years old, to eat the potatoes on his plate and he said 'Later.' And then she told him again to eat the potatoes and Mike said 'Soon.' And then she told him he had better eat those potatoes right now and he said, 'In a minute.' And then she stood up and Mike finally took a bite and told her, 'How can I eat them? They're cold!'"

It's not easy being a Mom.

King Duncan,, adapting Judith Viorst, All in the Family
Unconventional Mother's Day Gifts

This Mother's Day take a moment to think of all the mothers in the world who are in need. There are millions of women in the world living on less than a dollar a day. There are women in this country who are wondering how they are going to feed or diaper their children from day to day. There are children who need medical attention that their parents may not be able to afford. Anyone who has ever had to worry about such things can deeply sympathize. For those of us who have escaped such worries, we can only imagine the level of instinctive stress that uncertainty can provoke.

There are many ways to celebrate Mother's Day, but here are a few unconventional suggestions that will prove to your own mother that she did a good job raising you. How about dropping off a box of diapers and/or a case of formula to a local food bank or women's shelter? If you have some baby furniture or clothing that your own children have outgrown, how about donating that stuff to a local charity? Does our local hospital have a fund for children who need care? Are there doctors in our community or city who volunteer in clinics overseas who might need supplies? There are countless ways to help support Moms locally and globally. Let your own Mom know that you were thinking about her and all of the many things she provided for you along the way...and that you did a good deed in honor of her. It will make her proud.
Worse-Case Scenarios

If moms are to be faulted, it is because they love their children so much that they get irrational about it. For instance, in the comic strip Calvin and Hobbes, Calvin approaches his mother...

Calvin: "Can Hobbes and I go play in the rain, Mom?
Mom: "No."
Calvin: "Why not?"
Mom: "You'll get soaked."
Calvin: "What's wrong with that?"
Mom: "You could catch pneumonia, run up a terrible hospital bill, linger a few months, and die."
Calvin, looking out the window at the rain: "I always forget. If you ask a mom, you get a worse-case scenario."
Hobbes: "I had no idea these little showers were so dangerous."

Bill Watterson, The Essential Calvin & Hobbes, p. 130.

The Truest Friend

A mother is the truest friend we have, when trials, heavy and sudden, fall upon us; when adversity takes the place of prosperity; when friends who rejoice with us in our sunshine, desert us when troubles thicken around us, still will she cling to us, and endeavor by her kind precepts and counsels to dissipate the clouds of darkness, and cause peace to return to our hearts.

Washington Irving (1783-1859)

Long Over Due

Mother's Day was declared an annual National Holiday in 1914 by President Woodrow Wilson. He directed the Congress to designate the second Sunday of May as a special day for public expression of love and reverence for the mothers of America. Since that time there has been a "Mother's Day," and, I must say that even in 1914, it was long overdue.  

R.E. Lybrand, CSS Publishing Company