What to watch for below: Today we thank God for mothers! Please find below an assortment of videos for worship singing (chosen by our worship leader Anne), a video message, a closing prayer and my sermon manuscript for further reading. May the peace of our LORD Jesus be with you as we continue to wait for Him to deliver us from this pandemic and bring us back together in fellowship.
Before you enter the worship videos look at this video below as a tribute to moms…
Click the arrow below to hear the closing prayer
Sermon manuscript for ~ A Mother’s Love
Text: 1 John 3:11-18
All Scripture passages below are New International Version (NIV) Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
On this Mother’s Day of 2020, we are reminded to give thanks for our mothers and reflect on how they loved us and helped shape us into the people we are today. We also respect the fact that not all mothers were created equal. Some mothers had more of a traditional role in the home as domestic housewives while other mothers pursued careers. Either way, whatever role your mother gravitated toward, we take time today to be grateful for their “nurturing love.”
The apostle John focuses on loving one another in today’s passage. Every mother and father would be wise to understand the love the apostle is defining and apply it in their lives so that they can be godlier parents.
When Robert Ingersoll, the notorious skeptic, was in his heyday, two college students went to hear him lecture. 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 he did. 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. 381.
What an incredible influence a godly mother has with her love. Let us look at the characteristics of love in 1 John 3:11-18,
11 For this is the message you heard from the beginning: We should love one another. 12 Do not be like Cain, who belonged to the evil one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his own actions were evil and his brother’s were righteous. 13 Do not be surprised, my brothers and sisters, if the world hates you. 14 We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love each other. Anyone who does not love remains in death. 15 Anyone who hates a brother or sister is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life residing in him. 16 This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters. 17 If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person? 18 Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.
John reminds us that Cain was the first human to hate, and as a result murdered his brother Abel because he was jealous that God favoured Abel’s offering over his. Cain did not have the devote love for God as Abel did. John strongly warns that Cain’s behavior is unacceptable among believers. Believers must not hate their brothers or sisters, or their eternal security is in question. At the same time as believers live in righteousness, they should expect the world will hate them. Have you ever experienced discrimination for your devotion to God?
In the second part of this passage, verses 16-18, John provides three characteristics of love that are exemplified by a godly mother and every child of God must imitate.
Three Characteristics of a Godly Mother’s Love
1. A Godly mother’s love is sacrificial
In verse 16, we read again, “16 This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters.” There are many types of love, but the love John is referring to here comes from the Greek word “agape” which is a charitable, affectionate love that was perfectly demonstrated by Jesus’ sacrifice for us on the cross. Agape love is “sacrificial love.” A godly mother makes many sacrifices for her children on a daily basis. This is a selfless love where she puts her needs and ambitions aside to provide nurturing love for her children.
Years ago, a young mother was making her way across the hills of South Wales, carrying her tiny baby in her arms, when she was overtaken by a blinding blizzard. She never reached her destination and when the blizzard had subsided her body was found by searchers beneath a mound of snow. But they discovered that before her death, she had taken off all her outer clothing and wrapped it about her baby. When they unwrapped the child, to their great surprise and joy, they found he was alive and well. She had mounded her body over his and given her life for her child, proving the depths of her mother love. Years later that child, David Lloyd George, grown to manhood, became prime minister of Great Britain, and, without doubt, one of England’s greatest statesman. James S. Hewett, Illustrations Unlimited, Tyndale, 1972, p. 375.
Application Point – Where would this world be without the sacrificial love of Jesus? Where would this world be without the sacrificial love of a mother? How are we imitating the love of Jesus and our mothers today? How well are we loving sacrificially?
2. A Godly mother’s love is compassionate
In verse 17, we read, “If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person?” A godly mother has this nurturing love that expresses pity and wants to give when a child is in need. Someone said, “Love cannot be in the same room with pride or apathy.”
Jesus gives us the story of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37) in which a priest and Levite walked past a poor, beaten, robbed countryman and brother.
It was easier for these men to be priest and Levite following the law than it was to be genuine caregivers with compassion. They carried out their roles but missed their opportunity to serve their LORD and touch the heart of God. A godly mother is always closer to the heart of God because she wants to alleviate pain and is willing to give of herself, time and effort to do so. I believe the Good Samaritan had a compassionate heart.
A Christian counselor Brooks Ramsey made a marvelous discovery. He writes, “In the Hebrew language of the Old Testament the word for “compassion” comes from the root word, “womb.” The picture is of a birthing. Something new is being born. If I apply this in a human experience, it means that my compassionate acts always give the other person another chance. I do not hold past failures against them. I offer a “fresh start.” I want this for myself from others. Am I willing to give it to the other person? Such compassion will dramatically change the way we relate to each other.” Brooks Ramsey, Pastoral Counseling and Consulting Center, Memphis TN.
Application Point – During this COVID-19 pandemic, we need our love to be compassionate and moved toward giving to others. How often have we turned a blind “I” (eye) to others needs? Let us repent of this and allow God’s pure compassionate love to fill us and lead us to giving and supporting others. It can be as simple as listening to someone on the phone and offering them encouragement.
3. A Godly mother’s love is reliably active
In verse 18, John writes, “Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.” Love is not just spoken word or emotion it must be action. A godly mother doesn’t make empty promises to her children she delivers. This is why we honour mothers because they don’t abandon their children, but follow through with reliable, active love.
A young man, raised by a childless couple since he was seven years old, was leaving his adoptive parents in order to take a job in a distant city. During the emotional “Good-byes,” he grabbed his parents’ hands and said, “How can I ever repay you two for what you have done for me?” To which the father replied, “Son, there is a saying: The love of parents goes to their children, but the love of the children goes to their children.”
As the son attempted to respond, the mother broke in and said: “Son, what your father means is that a parent’s love can be paid back only by passing it on.”
Application point – How have you put your love in action lately? Have you put your loving words into action? Today, I repent of my empty promises and put on the love of Jesus. Will you join me in passing on reliable, active love to others – especially to your family?
Two brothers worked together on the family farm. One was married and had a large family. The other was single. At the day’s end, the brothers shared everything equally, produce and profit.
Then one day the single brother said to himself, “It’s not right that we should share equally the produce and the profit. I’m alone and my needs are simple.” So, each night he took a sack of grain from his bin and crept across the field between their houses, dumping it into his brother’s bin.
Meanwhile, the married brother said to himself, “It’s not right that we should share the produce and the profit equally. After all, I’m married, and I have my wife and my children to look after me for years to come. My brother has no one, and no one to take care of his future.” So, each night he took a sack of grain and dumped it into his single brother’s bin.
Both men were puzzled for years because their supply of grain never dwindled. Then one dark night the two brothers bumped into each other. Slowly it dawned on them what was happening. They dropped their sacks and embraced one another.
These brothers lived out the love that was taught to them by their godly mother. God be praised for their godly character of love!
Today O LORD, we give thanks for mothers who love sacrificially, with compassion and in reliable action. Teach us to do the same. AMEN!