Characteristics of Mothers




May 14-21, 2017



Pastor David Price



Ezekiel 19:10 

Thy mother is like a vine in thy blood, planted by the waters: she was fruitful and full of branches by reason of many waters.









Proverbs 31:1 

The words of king Lemuel, the prophecy that his mother taught him.

As I sat by mother’s side,

just before she crossed the tide,
And I asked her of the journey she must go;
Then a smile broke o’er her face,

as she whispered with sweet grace,
“O I settled all that question long ago.”

I remember’d this was true,

for the time I never knew
When she did not love and trust her Saviour so,
And her heart was true and kind,

 loved her Lord with soul and mind,
For she settled all that question long ago

 Now my mother’s God is mine,

for I have His peace divine,
And my heart,

with His sweet love is all aglow;
And I praise Him ev’ry day;

as I journey on my way,
For I settled all that question long ago.


As I read these words by James Black which were written in 1912, I could not help but think about the words of our text and also my own dear mother. Mother is a teacher by action and by word. As we look back on our life it is always great to think of the things we learned at our mother’s knee. We have three mothers to think about: past mothers, present mothers and future mothers. Too often we have abdicated our position as parents and teachers of our children to everyone else. Lemuel’s mother did not depend on the school, the prophets or the leaders to teach her son but took the responsibility of teaching him upon herself. She taught him about being a man and what to look for in a mate.



Mother is the most constant teacher in the life of a child and must always be aware that she is teaching every day.









1 Samuel 1:27-28 

For this child I prayed; and the LORD hath given me my petition which I asked of him: Therefore also I have lent him to the LORD; as long as he liveth he shall be lent to the LORD. And he worshipped the LORD there.



I grieved my Lord from day to day,
I scorned His love so full and free,
And tho' I wandered far away,
My mother’s pray'rs have followed me.

He turned my darkness into light,
This blessed Christ of Calvary,
I’ll praise His Name both day and night,
That mother’s pray'rs have followed me.

I’m coming home, I’m coming home,
To live my wasted life anew,
For mother’s pray'rs have followed me,
Have followed me the whole world thro'.


Lizzie DeArmond wrote this in 1912. In the story of Samuel in the first chapter of 1 Samuel we find Hannah, Samuel’s mother, praying twice. She first prayed that she would have a son and then prayed in thanksgiving for the son the Lord gave her. There is an interesting part of this story besides Hannah praying. She promised the Lord that if He would give her a son that her son would be given to the Lord for service. That was in her prayer in verse eleven of this chapter and now she comes fulfilling that vow made to the Lord. As she brought Samuel to Eli the priest in completion of her vow the Bible says this of Samuel, “And he worshipped the Lord there.” Samuel was born out of prayer and now he serves out of the same prayer but it is his personal worship that stands out in this passage. His mother gave thanks and Samuel worshipped the Lord.



The prayers of a mother for her children are precious and powerful with God.









2 Kings 4:18-20 

And when the child was grown, it fell on a day, that he went out to his father to the reapers. And he said unto his father, My head, my head. And he said to a lad, Carry him to his mother. And when he had taken him, and brought him to his mother, he sat on her knees till noon, and then died.

A mother is someone to shelter and guide us,
To love us, whatever we do,
With a warm understanding and infinite patience,
And wonderful gentleness, too.

A mother can utter a word of compassion
And make all our cares fall away,
She can brighten a home

with the sound of her laughter
And make life delightful and gay.

A mother possesses incredible wisdom
And wonderful insight and skill-
In each human heart is that one special corner
Which only a mother can fill!


This is not a hymn or even a Christian poem but thought it fitting for today. As a boy I can remember many times my mother being the one to soothe the hurts and comfort my fears. There is no heart like the heart of a mother. In the passage for today we find part of the story of the woman that had recognized the “man of God” and built a room for him. God blessed them with a son and now this tragedy of his death. When he was sick the father said, “Carry him to his mother.” Too often in the day we live this caring aspect is lost. Dads are trying to be the caretaker but a father does not have the same heart as a mother. She is the nurse and caregiver in the home. We need to be thankful for the caring mothers in our lives.



God intended for mothers to be the “keepers at home” and to be tenderhearted caregivers for the family.









Exodus 2:3 

And when she could not longer hide him, she took for him an ark of bulrushes, and daubed it with slime and with pitch, and put the child therein; and she laid it in the flags by the river's brink.


A mother lined a basket 
to keep her baby dry,
then rocked him on a river,
lest he awake and cry.
She let a princess name him
her son that he might live.
God's people had a leader.
She had such hope to give.

A mother laid her baby 
in manger lined with straw;
then, in the shepherds' story,
his call from God foresaw.
She nurtured him and taught him
the way that he must live. 
God's people had a savior.
She had such love to give.

Mary Keithahn wrote this poem some years ago. I have often thought of the innovation of mothers through the years. They would take flower sacks and make shirts and other clothes for their family. There are many examples of the innovation of mothers. In our text, Jochebed is faced with a dilemma from the order of Pharaoh that all boy babies were to die. She came up with an innovative plan to spare her son and made an ark of bulrushes and put him in the water. She had no way of knowing the outcome but trusted the Lord completely for the safety and care of her little boy, Moses. We know the story of how Pharaoh’s daughter found him, spared him, raised him, nursed him and named him because of his mother.



The innovative mother will find ways to teach, protect and encourage their children in the ways of the Lord.







Judges 5:28

 The mother of Sisera looked out at a window, and cried through the lattice, Why is his chariot so long in coming? why tarry the wheels of his chariots?


At the cross her station keeping
stood the mournful Mother weeping,
where he hung, the dying Lord;
for her soul, of joy bereavèd,
bowed with anguish, deeply grieved,
felt the sharp and piercing sword.

O good Jesu, let me borrow
something of thy Mother's sorrow,
fount of love, Redeemer kind,
that my heart fresh ardour gaining,
and a purer love attaining,
may with thee acceptance find.


This was written by Jacobus in the 1400’s but translated in the 1800’s by Edward Caswall. In the passage for today we find the mother of Sisera waiting for his return that never will come. Like every mother she looked for her son to return. When I was in college and working the midnight shift my mother would often call to check on my safety. When I drove home from that job she was looking for my return. In the words above Mary was vigilant watching Jesus in these hours of suffering and sorrow. Sisera’s mother had watched many times as this captain of the host had gone to battle and returned the conquering hero but now she waits for him to return again. She did not walk by the window and just glance out but she gazed out that window looking for her son’s safe homecoming. Her question, “Why is his chariot so long in coming” lets us know she has watched as others returned and now he is delayed. She was vigilant looking for her son.



Mothers have a vigilant heart for their children spiritually and in every area of life.








John 2:3-5 

And when they wanted wine, the mother of Jesus saith unto him, They have no wine. Jesus saith unto her, Woman, what have I to do with thee? mine hour is not yet come. His mother saith unto the servants, Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it.


  A mother, who was well educated with a PHD, decided to be a stay at home mother and care for her children and husband. When in social settings others would ask what she did they would often turn from her when they found she stayed at home. She came up with an answer that turned the situation around. Her answer became, “I’m socializing two Homo-sapiens in Judeo-Christian values so they’ll appropriate the eschatological values of utopia. What do you do?” The others would usually blurt out their occupation and then have no response for her chosen life.


Every mother should be aware of their children and what is going on in their life. Too many today are not in tune with their children. Mary was not this kind of mother. She knew before Jesus was born who He was and what His mission was to be. When they attended this wedding and the host was about to be embarrassed because now they were running out of refreshment, Mary told the servants to just do what Jesus told them to do. Mary could not have been so bold if she had not been aware of Who Jesus was. She knew He was the Son of God and she knew He had the power to fix this simple problem. She knew His wisdom, His power and His willingness to be a help for this family. Parents need to know their children and be aware of the circumstances of life they are in. Mary was the encourager for Jesus to perform His first public miracle and to be a blessing in this situation.



Knowing our children and being aware of their situations allows us to be the greatest blessing.








2 Timothy 1:5 

When I call to remembrance the unfeigned faith that is in thee, which dwelt first in thy grandmother Lois, and thy mother Eunice; and I am persuaded that in thee also.


Blessings on the hand of women!
Angels guard its strength and grace,
In the palace, cottage, hovel,
Oh, no matter where the place;
Would that never storms assailed it,
Rainbows ever gently curled;
For the hand that rocks the cradle
Is the hand that rules the world.

Woman, how divine your mission
Here upon our natal sod!
Keep, oh, keep the young heart open
Always to the breath of God!
All true trophies of the ages
Are from mother-love impearled;
For the hand that rocks the cradle
Is the hand that rules the world.


William Ross Wallace wrote these famous words that were first published in 1865. As Paul was writing to young Timothy he speaks clearly of the influence of his mother and grandmother. They had influenced him for the cause of Christ and in his “unfeigned faith.” If it is true that the hands that are molding our children control the world then we need to be most diligent about who is influencing our children. If a child is not brought up “in the nurture and admonition of the Lord” then they will not have that influence in their heart as they grow up. Church, school and children’s programs cannot take the place of the home in the influence of the heart of a child. The rocking hand of mother still rules the heart of the one she rocked.



There is no substitute for the influence of a godly mother in the growth of a child.




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