Mom, you’re the greatest!
By Paul Bawden
A cartoon portrayed a little fellow talking to a clerk as he stood next to the Mother’s Day cards. Some of the cards said, “Awesome Mother,” “To A Great Mother,” Perfect Mother,” “Wonderful Mother,” “The Best Mother,” Wonderful Mother,” “The Best Mom.”
Evidently, the little fellow couldn’t read yet, and he told the clerk, “Just a plain Mother’s Day card, I don’t want success to go to her head.”
I’ve never known a Mother who has had success go to her head. On the other hand, the Mothers I’ve known have been a success, especially my wife, the Mother of our children, my own Mother and my wife’s Mother. But what does it take to be a successful Mother?
A successful Mother is on call 24/7, which totals 168 hours a week or 8,706 hours per year. Multiply that amount by 18 years, assuming a child lives at home that long, and a Mother has put in 156,708 hours in her household. If she were paid $15-20/hour for her “labor of love,” her salary per year would be $130,000-$175,000. I’m sure any Mother would be more than willingly to receive that kind of salary for her efforts.
Then, think of all the meals a Mother cooks . If she prepares 2 meals a day, that’s 14 meals a week, 628 meals a year, and over 18 years that’s 11,304 meals prepared. No wonder Mothers are such good cooks, practice makes perfect.
At the same time, consider how many diapers a Mother changes from when a child is born to when the child becomes trained. Conservatively speaking, she may change around 3,000 diapers. Or how many books has a Mother read to her children? Or how many questions has she answered? Or how many hours has she spent in the nursery at her place of worship?
Yes, Mom you are truly amazing. We pause and honor you this month of May for who you are and for all that you do. But we also honor you for the tremendous influence for good that you bring to your family. Your example is powerful. That’s why the saying still stands, “The hand that rocks the cradle rules the world.”
In fact, the Bible in Proverbs 31:10-31 acknowledges this. In these verses it gives a great tribute to the excellent Mom who gives of herself so sacrificially to her family. But as the passage ends, it tells us that the most important part of a Mom’s life is her spiritual life. We are reminded that the Mother who has a reverential trust in the LORD is truly fulfilled and successful.
In the vernacular of our day, the Mother who has her trust in Jesus Christ as her Savior, will not only have lasting purpose in all that she does for her family, but also she will be able to influence her children to come to know Christ personally and encourage them to follow Him in the path of righteousness.
We pay tribute, as well, to single Moms who faithfully and sacrificially fulfill a double role in ministering to their children. We pray for Moms who are lonely for they are not able to hug the baby they once carried, or have lost their children through a difficult circumstance in life. For those who have experienced abortion, we pray for their healing and restoration. May they find the strength to join the growing chorus of those who speak out for those who cannot speak for themselves. We also honor those Moms who have lost their adult children in the ultimate sacrifice for their country.
God’s best to all Moms! You are the greatest!!
Paul Bawden is married and served in the pastoral ministry for 45 years, retiring in 2011. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a B.A. in Speech and attended Dallas Theological Seminary, receiving a Master of Theology. He has taken counseling courses at Trinity Evangelical Seminary in Deerfield, Illinois. Paul is a lifetime member of the Evangelical Free Church of America, as well as being a member of Interim Pastor Ministries (IPM), which serves churches during their time of transition in searching for a new pastor. He writes for Union Gospel Press, as well as being a volunteer writer for GotQuestions.org. Paul likes to write, read, bike, and work in the yard. The Bawdens have had the privilege to travel to Mexico and Romania on mission trips and visited various countries in Europe.