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Christian Living

Spiritual Life

Honoring Mom

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Beth Patch - Senior Producer

I can still remember the bright-eyed smile on my son's face as he ran to hand me the pine cone stuffed with peanut butter and rolled in bird seed he had made at school. "You can hang it outside your window and watch the birds come and eat off of it," he said, holding it by the ribbon hanger.

"Oh, how wonderful," I told him as I hugged and thanked him. (Our cats also nodded with a silent thank you.)

Little children absolutely love making something special for Mom. They rarely wait until the actual holiday, handing their artwork to Mom as soon as they see her! They just naturally want to please their parents, believing they will receive smiles, hugs, and praise in return. They bare their hearts with reckless abandon, no reservation – open, loving, hopeful.

Sometimes, I think we forget the significance of the innocence we once carried as children and how important it is for our spiritual well-being to hold onto it. Jesus Loves the Little Children is more than a happy tune we sing. In Matthew 18, Jesus was explaining the Kingdom of Heaven, our future, our eternity, our hope. He calls a little child to him as he spoke to his disciples. He says:

“Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven.” Matthew 18:3-4, ESV

At the time Jesus is telling his disciples this, they have already stuck by his side for years. They’ve witnessed Jesus feeding 5,000 with five loaves of bread and two fish. They’ve been with Him when he healed people from all kinds of illnesses and have heard many pearls of wisdom told to them in Jesus’ parables. Wouldn’t you think they knew by then how to get into Heaven? But, they needed to catch the vision of humbling themselves like the child standing before them; and so do we.

Here we are, all grown up and having experienced the ups and downs of life. How can we regain the childlike perspective we once had?

I think back on my pine cone moment. It’s likely that in the days preceding receiving this fine gift from my son, not everything in our lives had been all positive and wonderful. He may have even had a timeout or felt jealous over his mother’s love for his siblings. None of those emotions trumped his all-out joy of sharing his heart with me that Mother’s Day. He humbled himself: forgot any negativity, released all unforgiveness, jealousy, hurt, mixed emotions, things that didn’t make sense to him, and honored me with his love.

This Mother’s Day, let's remember how to be that innocent child in our relationships with our mothers and our Creator. Jesus treasured us from the moment we were born. Let’s run to him with our arms held out like toddlers, tossing aside our hurts, confusion, and hard hearts. Our Heavenly Father will pick us up and delight in our vulnerability, our humbleness, our love.

Father God, on this Mother’s Day, please meet us where we are. Help us to honor our mothers by honoring you. As we spend the day with loved ones or alone, please show us opportunities to rid ourselves of harmful emotions that build a wall between us and you. You allowed us all to come into this world as children. Help us now to be like children in our relationships with you Lord Jesus. You are worthy of the peanut-buttered pine cone, better known as the gift of our heart.

Copyright © 2012, Beth Patch. Used with permission.

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