When Jesus saw His Mother and the disciple whom he loved, He said “Woman, behold your son” and to the disciple, He said “behold, your mother”. Jesus was dying on that cross – His own weight crushed His lungs and He was suffocating. Even worse, he experienced the emotional and spiritual darkness of separation from His Father. Why at that moment did he give his mother to a trusted and loved friend? Why did He not make these arrangements previously? Why not during supper in the upper room? Why not during the days after his resurrection before He ascended to heaven?
Christ, during His most physically, mentally and spiritually demanding experience took a moment to tell His mother, “Mom, I love you, I care for you and I have provided for you”. He demonstrated the commandment “honor your father and mother”. Why did he choose this moment? Could He have been communicating a message to us? No matter how demanding and crazy our lives get – is it possible to still spend time and effort to honor our parents?
You might live near your parents or far away from them. They may be healthy and active or their health may be failing. Some have a great relationship with their parents and some are estranged from them. Many of us have lost at least one parent to death. No matter what conditions exist, there is a way that you can honor them or their memory.
>Call to catch up or fondly remember the past, or just simply listen to them unload – aging parents are dealing with challenges that sometimes overwhelm them and they need the support.
>Give them a new photo of their grandchildren. Don’t send it electronically unless they specifically want that format.
>Write a heartfelt letter telling your parents what they mean to you and how much you appreciate what they have done for you. Now would be a good time to thank them for their wisdom.
>Ensure that their memory will live on and tell your children stories about their grandparents. If you don’t have children, tell others about your parents.
>Give them a special gift. Something that they would never buy for themselves.
>Treat them with respect and don’t steal their dignity. Although there may be areas where they will need help in making decisions, allow them to continue making decisions.
>If you live nearby, give them practical helps.
>If you are estranged from a parent, now is the time to cast aside your pride, if that has been the problem. This is the parent that God gave to you and even if they are abusive, you can still honor them without allowing the toxic behavior to enter into your life.
>Remember that your parent isn’t only a parent. They are a man or woman with human needs and unique gifts. You will send their heart soaring when you take the time to get to know them as this wonderful creation and acknowledge what you see.
On this Mother’s Day, put your heart and mind into the gift that you give to her. What would she cherish? Flowers are nice but eventually they wilt and will have to be thrown away. Lunch out is a treat to her but it only lasts for a little while. How about also giving her a handwritten letter, expressing your appreciation for her? Happy Mother’s Day!