Text: Luke 1: 26-38
Prop: A picture of the Virgin Mary
Summary: Mary is a role model for mothers who are women of God.
And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favor with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest. – Luke 1:30-32
Look what I brought with me. It is a picture of the Virgin Mary being visited by the angel Gabriel. This is when Mary found out she was going to be a mother. Being a mother is something very special. It is an awesome responsibility. Any child is a gift from God and the rearing of children is one of the most important things a parent has to do. Today is a day when we thank God for what our mothers do and have done to rear us in a fashion that honors God.
The love and caring of a mother starts before we are even born. With Mary it started with a humble obedience to the will of God. When she learned of her role in bringing Jesus into the world, she replied to the angel, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word (Luke 1:38). As frightened as she must have been from seeing an angel, she answered God’s call to duty. She cared for her yet unborn child when she visited her cousin Elizabeth. Even while she was pregnant, she helped her cousin in the last few months before Elizabeth gave birth to John the Baptist (Luke 1:39-56). Mary followed the customs of worship when she brought Jesus to be circumcised according to the law (Luke 2:21). She made worship a priority in her life even while Jesus was an infant.
Mary protected the baby Jesus from harm by fleeing to Egypt when an angel warned Joseph that King Herod would try to destroy him (Matthew 2:12-14). She took Jesus to the feast of Passover where he stayed in the temple when he was twelve years old (Luke 2:41-50). It was important for her to take her child to the temple, just as your mother today brings you to church. She attended the wedding in Cana and encouraged her son to perform his first miracle. Mothers encourage us to be our best. She was always concerned for his safety. One time when he had so many people following him they couldn’t even enter the house it was so full, and she wanted to be sure he was alright (Mark 3:21,31-35). Mothers will naturally be concerned for our safety.
Mary followed Jesus to the cross and watched in horror as they crucified the Lord of Life. She loved her son and must have cried as he entrusted her care to John from the cross (John 19:25-27). She visited the tomb on Easter morning and her grief turned to joy when she saw the empty grave! A mother is devoted and sticks by her children through good times and bad times. What a wonderful example we have of motherhood when we consider the life of Mary, the mother of Jesus. Be sure to thank God for your mother today and tell her how much you love her.
©1997 by Jim Kerlin. All rights reserved.
The Annunciation by Henry Owassa Tanner, 1898, Philadelphia Museum of Art, courtesy of The Artchive. Used by permission.