Gayle Crabtree is a nationally recognized speaker, anti-domestic violence advocate and Christian author. She is the founder and part-time executive director of Hope for Healing.Org; a 501c3 nonprofit that serves victims of sexual and domestic violence. She maintains an active speaking and consulting schedule that offers encouragement to victims.
Mother's Day sermon based on John 19:26-27
Mother's Day is the one day of the year that we recognize and give thanks for
the mothers among us who make our lives what they are. Today we
celebrate the mothers who have loved us, nurtured us and cared for
us, whether they are our biological mothers, adopted or acted as
surrogate mothers in the place of our own. As we celebrate the
mothers that we are or will be.
Me and my girls
passage of John 19:26-27 speaks about mothers on very different
levels. The first and most obvious is that in this passage, Jesus is
taking care of the physical, earthly needs of his own mother. He is
also giving John a mother to love and care for. From this point on,
he is to be Mary's son and she is to be John's mother. It is task
that John accepts for the rest of Mary's life.
speaks to me because it speaks of a mother – child relationship on
several levels. Some of us grew up with mothers that we love and
would want to see cared for as Jesus did with Mary. Those with
nurturing, loving mothers have much to be grateful for. They are are
gifts to be treasured.
are women who carried us home from the hospital and loved us despite
our 3:00 a.m. hunger pangs, homework and were there for us through
the heartbreak of our first young relationship. We are grateful for
moms who taught us life skills and who loved us enough to discipline
us. These are mothers to be cherished.
not all of us are so fortunate. Some of us grew up with mothers who
were absent either in presence or emotionally. During this time
period it was expected that a son would care for and provide for his
mother in her old age. It is interesting that we don't hear anything
about John's mother mentioned in the Gospels.
do not know if she died an early age or if she had a relationship
with John at all. What we do know is that she is not mentioned as the
other women who were there. This may indicate a mother who was either
emotionally or physically distant from her child or one who passed
away. It is a passage that gives encouragement to those who had
unhealthy relationship. John's life is an example that through God
you can be blessed and a blessing to others.
relationship between John and Mary is also an adoptive relationship.
Jesus called upon John to take care of Mary, to adopt her into his
home. He accepted and Mary did as well. We know this because John
took her into his home for the rest of her life.
love between adopted children and parents is often as strong (and
sometimes stronger) than that of biological families. This too, is a
gift to be celebrated.
passage also speaks of women who do not have their own children. By
living in John's home, Mary was agreeing to nurture any children that
he may have. This is no small thing.
many times have we been influenced by women chose to nurture and care
for us in the place of their own children? I know many who have
taught school, led Sunday School classes and worked in advocacy
centers because they care about the lives of children. Surrogate
mothers like these are to be celebrated.
This passage from John also speaks to women who have suffered a loss. Indeed, this was the
case for Mary after Jesus perished on the cross. Nothing can replace
the loss of a child. However; we know that through Jesus we have the
hope of seeing our child again in the heavenly beyond.