3 Lessons We Can Learn from Biblical Moms This Mother’s Day
Find fresh encouragement for parenting and faith in God’s Word
May 03, 2023Print this article
Mother’s Day is often full of moments that remind you of the challenges and blessings of motherhood.
You feel overjoyed when you open the sweet handmade card that arrived in the mail from your child in college.
Your stress levels rise when your five-year-old’s request to make you breakfast turns into a smoking toaster oven and a layer of maple syrup across the countertops.
You feel fresh thankfulness for your own mother as you think back on the sweet memories you’ve shared with her.
Your heart breaks when you get a text from a friend who is grieving a recent miscarriage this Mother’s Day.
You feel anxiety as you try to slow down and enjoy the day while ignoring the endless to-do list that always seems to overshadow the weekend.
This Mother’s Day, you can rest in the truth that God is with you in every moment of motherhood. His Word is full of encouragement for moments of stress, heartbreak, and fear and moments of joy, peace, and contentment. And in the Bible, you can find many examples of mothers whose stories offer wisdom, encouragement, and inspiration for your own parenting journey and your personal walk with God.
We invite you to take a few moments and reflect on these three lessons we can learn from biblical moms.
Rebecca: Cling to God’s Promises
Read: Genesis 24; 25:19—28; 27
Rebecca was the wife of Isaac and a key part of God’s promise to Abraham to make a great nation out of a once-childless couple. Before she became a mother, Rebecca was prepared to follow God’s calling—even when it meant leaving her family to become Isaac’s wife. Her family blessed her before she left:
“May you, sister, become the mother of millions!
May your descendants conquer the cities of their enemies!” (Genesis 24:60 GNT)
But for 20 years, Isaac and Rebecca were childless, just like Abraham and Sarah had been. Isaac prayed to the Lord for Rebecca to conceive, and God answered his prayer by giving Rebecca twin sons. Before they were born, Rebecca felt her twins struggling with each other in her womb. She sought to understand why this was happening and received an answer from the Lord: the two children she carried would become two rival nations, and the older son, Esau, would serve the younger son, Jacob.
When her sons were older, Rebecca—who favored Jacob over Esau—helped Jacob deceive his father and steal the blessing intended for Esau. Despite this sinful deception, God remained faithful to his promises to Abraham and Isaac. He multiplied their descendants through Jacob, who was the father of the nation of Israel and an early ancestor of Jesus Christ.
Like all mothers, Rebecca had moments where she trusted God, and other moments where she tried to take matters into her own hands. Her story can remind us to cling to God’s promises, trusting him to work out every challenge we experience.
- Are you ever tempted to doubt God’s promises? Do you ever feel the need to take matters into your own hands, like Rebecca? What does this desire reveal about your heart?
- Spend a few minutes reflecting on all the times God has kept his promises to you. How does this make you feel about trusting God in the future?
- What are some ways you can focus on God’s promises for you, your children, and your family today?
Hannah: Ask for God’s Blessings
Read: 1 Samuel 1—2:21
Hannah was the wife of Elkanah, a man from the Israelite tribe of Ephraim. For years, God did not allow Hannah to have children—all while she watched Elkanah’s second wife, Peninnah, have several children of her own. The weight of Hannah’s longing for a family, combined with Peninnah’s mockery, resulted in deep suffering in Hannah’s life. But amid her suffering, she cried out to God and asked him to remember her.
One day, Hannah poured out her heart to God within earshot of a priest named Eli. She looked so distraught that Eli mistook her for an intoxicated woman. But when he learned about her distress and saw that her prayers were earnest, he blessed her before she went on her way.
Before a year had passed, God answered Hannah’s prayers for a child. She had a son, Samuel, whose name served as a reminder of her original prayer: “I asked the LORD for him.”
In response to Samuel’s birth, Hannah prayed a different prayer—a prayer of joy and thanksgiving to God:
“The LORD has filled my heart with joy;
how happy I am because of what he has done!
I laugh at my enemies;
how joyful I am because God has helped me!” (1 Samuel 2:1 GNT)
In response to God’s blessing, Hannah dedicated Samuel to God. He would grow up to be a leader of Israel who would anoint the nation’s first kings: Saul and David. And Hannah would be blessed with five more children—further proof that God answered her prayers.
- Think back to a time in your life when your prayers for God’s blessings went unanswered. How did you feel? How did it affect your prayers? Did you struggle to believe that God heard you?
- How has God blessed you and your family in the past? Make a list of his blessings. How did you respond to these blessings?
- What blessings are you praying for today? How does the story of Hannah encourage you to keep praying?
Lois and Eunice: Raise Children in God’s Ways
Read: 2 Timothy 1:1—6
Lois and Eunice were the grandmother and mother of Timothy, who served alongside the apostle Paul and helped encourage the early church. Although they are only named once in the Bible, these two women are remembered as shining examples of mothers who passed their faith to future generations.
Paul mentions Lois and Eunice in one of his letters to Timothy:
I remember the sincere faith you have, the kind of faith that your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice also had. I am sure that you have it also. (2 Timothy 1:5 GNT)
Paul does not detail how Lois and Eunice raised Timothy to love God and his Word. There aren’t any convenient lists of foolproof ways to disciple children or handy tricks to help them sit through church services. But he does encourage Timothy—and all believers—with the reminder that the Holy Spirit equips us with power, love, and self-control. The same Holy Spirit that equipped Paul and Timothy for their ministry guided Lois and Eunice in raising Timothy to treasure God’s Word and walk in his ways. And Timothy’s sincere faith was the evidence of this beautiful inheritance from his mother and grandmother.
Today, we can be encouraged by the godly influence of mothers, grandmothers, and other women of faith who are following in the footsteps of Lois and Eunice.
- Think back on your own life. Who are the women who helped you grow in faith? How does their influence still impact your walk with God today?
- How can you inspire your children, grandchildren, and other younger believers to love God and his Word? Make a list of practical ways to share your faith.
- What are some ways you can pray for the next generation of believers? Will you commit to faithfully pray for and encourage the young people God has placed in your life?
Happy Mother’s Day from all of us at American Bible Society! We hope that this resource encouraged your heart and reminded you of God’s deep love for you. To help you continue exploring Scripture, here are three additional resources:
- Mom, Refresh Your Heart and Guide Your Children in God’s Word This Mother’s Day
- 4 Scriptures for Exhausted Parents
- Tough Parenting Day? Take Heart with 6 Reminders from God’s Word
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