Mom, mama, mam, ma, mother…any way you slice it, it pretty much means the same thing: nurturer, sustainer, lover of children, friend. In our harried, hurryup world there’s little down time. For those who believe motherhood is a relatively easy task in comparison to a “careeroriented” vocation, consider this: by the time a child reaches 18, a mother has had to handle some extra 18,000 hours of childgenerated work. In fact, women who never have children enjoy the equivalent of an extra three months a year in leisure time! Where would we be without our mothers? Simply put, we wouldn’t! I love the story I read the other day about two little boys giving their mother a house plant for Mother’s Day. They had used their own money and she was thrilled. The older of them said with a sad face, “there was a bouquet that we wanted to give you at the flower shop. It was real pretty, but it was too expensive. It has 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.” Moms, do yourself a favor. Remind yourself that there’s no such thing as a ‘perfect’ mother. While no one needs to be treated with more tenderness than our moms, it seems that sometimes we’re too hard on them. There appears to be “equal opportunity” though, because when the kids aren’t too hard on mom, she has a tendency to be too hard on herself! Enjoy today and lighten up on yourself. I’ll leave you with one last story. A mother was browsing in the ladies’ department one day with her son who was just learning to read. Trying to read all the signs he could, he came upon one in the maternity department. “Look, Mom!” he said excitedly as he pointed at the sign. “They’re even making clothes for eternity now!” Although there’s no such thing as ‘eternity’ clothes, I know quite a few moms who’ve clothed their children in prayer, love and encouragement in preparation for eternity! And, to them we use this day to say, ‘thanks’. Have a blessed Mother’s Day and remember the One who gave it to you! Kevin
Framily: I know the title sounds a little odd. But if you think about it, it encompasses what we as a body of believers need to be. The concept of family from early Hebraic days has certainly changed. In Bible times, the family comprised members of a household, including not only parents and children, along with other relatives and concubines, but also servants, travelers, aliens, and anyone else who happened to be within the house and was therefore under the protection of the head of the family. Biblically, the term “family” is interchangeable with “house”, and “founding a house” can refer to setting up a separate dwelling as well as establishing a family. In the broader sense “house” may refer to an entire nation (“house of Israel”). Once a household was established and the Israelites became more settled in a particular location, sons learned their fathers’ skills and continued the family trade. By specializing in such trades, however, the villagers became less self‐sufficient, depending more on farmers for food and on other specialized villages for other products. I draw your attention to this particular way of life to show how different things are today than what they were then. Although the “community concept” has certainly changed, the need for relationship hasn’t! Just as with Israel, as emphasis on the smaller family unit increased, old duties that had been willingly accepted by the “wider” groups (clans) came to be neglected. It was sometimes bad enough that they frequently had to be reminded of their obligations, particularly toward widows and orphans (Is 1:17; Jer 7: 6). There was one thing, however, that seemed to strengthen the smaller family unit: family participation in certain celebrations such as Passover. Bringing your family into an assembly of God’s people has the same impact on today’s families! Our small family units need to connect and be a part of God’s family thus creating FRAMily. Has assembling with other believers become monotonous? Have you lost sight on how important connection with other “FRAMily” members is? Remind yourself today as to how important it is to be a part of God’s “house”. Remember the words of Joshua when he reminded the Israelites of old, “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord!” Have a blessed day and remember the One who gave it to you! Kevin
Kevin Lough is the minister at the Whitehall Church of Christ in Fairmont WV.