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Sunday, 10 March 2013

Mothering Sunday

Today, as the various retailers have ensured we don't forget, is Mothering Sunday - that day in the year when mothers are given a special recognition.  This morning, in Wishaw Baptist Church, I was able to share some thoughts on Timothy, the recipient of two of the New Testament letters written by the apostle, Paul. 

One of the points made about that young man was the Godly upbringing that he enjoyed: "I am reminded of your sincere faith, a faith that dwelt first in your grandmother Lo'is and your mother Eunice and now, I am sure, dwells in you." (II Tim 1:5).  "... as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings which are able to instruct you for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus." (II Tim 3:14-15).

However, while acknowledging the part that parents, and grandparents, play in the upbringing of children - and also pointing out that those who are childless, for whatever reason, may 'adopt' a child whom they know, to pray for that child and even, if the family is known to them, to provide gifts for the child that might point him/her to Jesus - I also reminded folk, including the children who were present, that not everyone is in a position to wish their mum "A Happy Mothers' Day"! 

Now that is pretty obvious for someone of my generation, whose parents have both been dead for a number of years.  I was thinking a little more widely than that!  This morning's Radio 4 Appeal was on behalf of an organisation named Winston's Wish.  This is a charity for bereaved children, that helps young people re-adjust to life after the death of a parent or sibling.  The case that was highlighted involved a young mum who was killed when a car mounted the pavement and hit her.  Her husband, and two-year-old son were just a few paces ahead of her.  Here is a little boy who cannot tell his mum that he loves her, or bring her a card and a gift.

Then I thought of even further afield.  I remembered Danna, a 14 year-old who lives at a centre run by Open Doors in Colombia, South America. She has been there since she was 11. Before she arrived at the centre, Danna’s mother was an evangelist who led many people to Christ.  However, as a result, the guerrilla rebels told her to stop or there would be "consequences".  Her mother rebelled, and secretly continued bringing people to Christ.

One day, Danna’s mother and many other people were having fellowship on a local green. A friend came running to her mum, warning her to run as the guerrilla rebels were after her.  At the time, Danna’s mother was carrying Danna’s baby sister. As a result, the rebels caught her. Two minutes later Danna found her mother lying face down on the ground, having been shot 15 times in the face by the rebels. 

Mothering Sunday.  Let those of us who still have a mum whom we love with us; and even those of us who are orphans because of the natural deaths of our parents at a good age; take a moment to remember those who have to grow up without their mother - those for whom Mothering Sunday may bring only sadness.

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