The Bible does celebrate mothers. One of those celebrated women was a woman named Hannah. I want to profile Hannah this Mother’s Day. There are many more aspects of her profile than I will point out, but I want to look at five points of PROFILING A GODLY MOTHER.
By Pastor Delbert Young
Hannah, Profile of a Godly Mother
Hannah, Profile of a Godly Mother
Scriptures: 1 Timothy 2:14-15, Titus 2:4-5, 1 Samuel 1:2, 1 Samuel 1:3, 1 Samuel 1:4-5, 1 Samuel 1:7, 1 Samuel 1:10-11, 1 Samuel 1:19-20, 1 Samuel 2:21, 1 Samuel 1:13-16
It’s Mother’s Day! Let’s acknowledge all our moms (give them a shout… Be seated). Stick with me as I set this up. I’m going to segue into our lesson by asking, “Is Osama bin Laden dead?” At some time last Sunday (I like he died on a Sunday) Osama bin Laden went straight to hell. He did not pass “go” and did not collect $200. He’s not hiding from the U.S. anymore. God is blistering his terrorist soul in hell. A mother birthed the son now enlisted in our U.S. military making this happen, ending the life of a horrific terrorist. However, another mother birthed Osama bin Laden birthing a horrific terrorist. Did either mother know what who they birthed would do at the time of birth? Every mother births a child heading for heaven, or a child damned for hell. How deep, how complex, how amazing, how serious is motherhood?
Mothers, I have some questions for you. Have you ever known a mother of whom you said, “I want to be a mother like her”? Was it your mother? Have you ever met a mother of whom you said, “I DO NOT want to be a mother like her”? Was it your mother? Which do you recall encountering the most – mothers you want to be like, or mothers you don’t want to be like?
Running the internet, I found this quote (many times) spoken by a pastor back in 1928. His name is W. L. Caldwell. “The pride of America is its mothers. There are wicked mothers like Jezebel of old. There are unnatural mothers who sell their children into sin. There are sin-cursed rum-soaked and abandoned mothers to whom their motherhood is the exposure of their shame. I am glad to believe, however, that there are comparatively few in this class.”
Motherhood does indeed expose the “shame” of some women. Caldwell said, “There are comparatively FEW in this class.” Is this true? Are there “few” mothers today in the Jezebel, abusive, sin-cursed, drunken, drugged, abandoning, shameful class? “Few” is not what I see today. I see the number greatly increasing in our society. Caldwell also said, “The pride of America is its mothers.” Are today’s mothers “the pride of America”? If so, I fear for where America is heading.
We glorify motherhood every second Sunday in May on Mother’s Day and motherhood should be glorious. Godly mothers should be glorified. But, motherhood is not glorious with millions of abortions. It’s not glorious with millions of divorces where mothers abandon their children, families, and husband. It’s not glorious when 25% of all babies today are illegitimately born with no home, no family, and many don’t know who their father is. It’s not glorious when we look at millions of battered children who are the victims of angry, drugged, and alcoholic mothers. I know, and you know, mothers who have desecrated their marriage, their family, their children, and their own lives. So, I don’t want to celebrate all mothers on this Mother’s Day.
It seems Biblical teachings like Proverbs 31 with the virtuous woman are out of date and irrelevant for today’s mothers. Today, the role of a mother is not to raise children as much as to raise a career, living selfishly pushing the children and family to the back burner. Today, children get in the mother’s way and motherhood is mocked by mother herself.
1Timothy 2:14-15 And it WAS THE WOMAN, not Adam, who was deceived by Satan, and sin was the result. BUT women will be SAVED THROUGH CHILDBEARING AND BY CONTINUING TO LIVE IN FAITH, LOVE, HOLINESS, AND MODESTY.
Often it’s the woman’s fault, not the man’s, things go wrong. Paul said because she births children her job is not done and her salvation not complete. She must continue to live in faith, love, holiness, and modesty. This was God’s plan for a mother then and I haven’t heard it’s changed.
Titus 2:4-5 Then they can train the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.
This seems so distant from our society, yet those are the type mothers celebrated in the scriptures. They are a witness for God’s word and not women like Potiphar’s wife, women like Lot’s wife, women like David’s wife Michal, women like Jezebel, Delilah, and Sapphira who malign and mock God’s word.
But the Bible does celebrate mothers. One of those celebrated women was a woman named Hannah. I want to profile Hannah this Mother’s Day. There are many more aspects of her profile than I will point out, but I want to look at five points of PROFILING A GODLY MOTHER.
Hannah lived in a tough time and in an extremely difficult home situation. It was a time when God’s people were cold to God. The priesthood was corrupt. The word of the Lord was rare and there was no vision from God (1Sa 3:1). People were not seeking God. The nation was weak and growing weaker. There was no strong godly leader. God’s people needed someone to rise up and lead. God would make Samuel their leader. To make a strong godly leader, God needed a strong godly mother. Hannah would be the mother. The father would be a man named Elkanah. So, let’s profile godly Hannah.
(1) The first thing we see about Hannah is she had a right relationship with her husband in difficult situations.
1 Samuel 1:2 He had two wives; one was called Hannah and the other Peninnah. Peninnah had children, but Hannah had none.
As we immediately see, Hannah’s home was far from perfect and her husband had obvious faults. Hannah was married to a polygamist. How would you women like this marital difficulty? Be certain, Hannah didn’t like it any more than you would. Polygamy has never been God’s plan. It’s made clear by Jesus and writers of the New Testament. Though polygamy was legal and accepted in their society, Elkanah created a difficult home life for Hannah to say the least. Most likely it was an Abraham, Sarah, Hagar situation. Likely, Hannah could not have children, so Elkanah brought Peninnah into the picture to provide him future generations. Sadly, Hannah could not give her husband what she most wanted to give. It was not a perfect relationship by any means, but what marriage is? Even with this great difficulty, Hannah worked through it. Because she did, God blessed and used her.
Interestingly, in their society polygamy was accepted, but divorces wrong. In our society divorce is accepted and polygamy is wrong. Yet, there are similarities. Women today can relate to Hannah’s situation. From the heartbreak of divorce, or spousal unfaithfulness, etc., perhaps you can relate to some of the battles Hannah faced in your home as you deal with your spouse’s “X” and children from a previous home, or relationship, etc.
The most important relationship in any family where mothering is involved is NOT the relationship between the mother and the children, but the relationship between the mother and the father or stepfather. What parents communicate to their children by their relationship dominates children’s thinking for life. Mom, from your relationship with your spouse your children are learning relationships are sometimes difficult, learning about love, learning about forgiveness, learning about sin, learning about sharing, learning about communicating, learning about empathy, learning to parent, etc. Far more important than the relationship you have with your child is the relationship you have with your spouse you project to your child.
I watch mothers play children against the father. I see mothers siding with their child against the father. Don’t do this even if you feel he’s wrong. Get alone and discuss it. Whisper yell at each other behind closed doors. For God’s sake, don’t battle in front of the children especially when it concerns them. I see mothers attempting to be their child’s best friend. Your child will find their own best friend. What they need is a mother who will teach the daughters how to mother and be a wife and show the sons what kind of woman to find to be the mother of his children. Mom, do you maintain a right relationship with your husband in difficult situations at home?
(2) Hannah’s spouse wasn’t perfect, but he knew God.
1 Samuel 1:3 YEAR AFTER YEAR this man went up from his town to WORSHIP AND SACRIFICE to the LORD Almighty at Shiloh…
Three times a year every man was to go to the place of worship. At this time the place was Shiloh. Elkanah did exactly this year after year. He was a worshipping man who gave sacrificially to God. Elkanah was not perfect. No husband is, but Elkanah worshipped God. Hannah had a believing husband. In spite of his faults, Elkanah was a spiritual leader who took his family, stressful as his family was, to worship (2:1). Woman, don’t marry a man because he’s cute. He won’t be one day. Marry a man because he worships God. He’ll take care of you and your children forever and he will love you.
1 Samuel 1:4-5 …But to Hannah he gave a double portion because HE LOVED HER, and the LORD had closed her womb.
He loved Hannah in spite of the fact she could not have children. A worshiping man who sacrifices to the Lord will love you no matter your inadequacies. Did you select a worshiping spouse and do you worship with your worshiping husband?
(3) Hannah had a right relationship with God herself.
1 Samuel 1:7 This went on year after year. Whenever HANNAH WENT UP TO THE HO– USE OF THE LORD, her rival provoked her till she wept and would not eat.
Peninnah, the other wife, harassed Hannah to tears because Hannah could not have children. Still, Hannah went to worship with her husband, awkward as their relationship was. Children need to see their mother and father worship together even in tense, bad situations. Mother, this is vital if you want godly children. Getting your family to church is not a “fix all,” but I promise something wonderful happens to your children when they see mom (step-mom) and dad (step dad) worship together. They learn God is to be worshipped even in tough times and one day they will have tough times. There is nothing two people can do together deeper than worshipping God together. Parents, your being faithful to worship week in and week out is major. Your attitude toward worship will make a deposit into your children they will never forget. Do you have a right relationship with God yourself in spite of tough times at home – times of tears?
(4) Hannah prayed. She went to the Lord with her bitterest problem(s).
1 Samuel 1:10-11 In BITTERNESS OF SOUL HANNAH WEPT MUCH AND PRAYED TO THE LORD. And she made a vow, saying, “O LORD Almighty, if you will only look upon your servant’s misery and remember me, and not forget your servant but give her a son, then I will give him to the LORD for all the days of his life, and no razor will ever be used on his head.”
Hannah was provoked to bitterness, but she knew what to do – pray. Was it bitterness toward Peninnah, or was it really bitterness toward God? Verse 6 said, “The Lord had closed her womb.” Did she blame God? Hannah was a woman of prayer and knew God could fix this. She was a woman not only of worship. She was a woman of prayer and prayer will touch God’s heart and God’s hand. Mom, are you a praying mom, or do you simply get bitter at people and God?
Interestingly, Hannah didn’t want a child only for herself. She wanted a child she could give to God. She promised God if he would give her a son, she would dedicate him to God. Hannah promised the child would be a man of God. The “no razor” part was the Nazarite vow (Num 6:3). Hannah promised she would raise her child to be “God centered” all his lifelong and be totally devoted to God. This is what God wanted and needed.
Mothers, where do you align here? If you graded yourself as to how you raised, or are raising, your children to be dedicated to God all their lifelong what grade would you give yourself? Give yourself a grade – “A, B, C, D, and F”? What’s your grade level raising your children to be dedicated lifelong to God?
1 Samuel 1:19-20 Early the next morning they arose and worshiped before the LORD and then went back to their home at Ramah. Elkanah lay with Hannah his wife, and the LORD remembered her. So in the course of time Hannah conceived and gave birth to a son. She named him Samuel, saying, “Because I asked the LORD for him.”
Hannah raised Samuel exactly as she promised she would. She later took young Samuel to Eli and there gave her child to God where he grew up in the tabernacle ministering to the Lord. God had great plans for Samuel and blessed Hannah.
1 Samuel 2:21 And the LORD was gracious to Hannah; she conceived and gave birth to three sons and two daughters. Meanwhile, the boy Samuel grew up in the presence of the LORD.
In God’s house Samuel grew and became one of the greatest men ever.
(5) Hannah was a woman of moral purity. The high priest’s name was Eli. Eli once observed Hannah praying.
1 Samuel 1:13-16 Hannah was praying in her heart, and her lips were moving but her voice was not heard. Eli thought she was drunk and said to her, “How long will you keep on getting drunk? Get rid of your wine.” “Not so, my lord,” Hannah replied, “I am a woman who is deeply troubled. I have not been drinking wine or beer; I was pouring out my soul to the LORD. Do not take your servant for a WICKED WOMAN; I have been praying here out of my great anguish and grief.”
Hannah was seriously entreating the Lord. The term wicked woman is associated in scripture with idolatry, rebellion, lewd sensuous acts, etc. Hannah let Eli know quickly she was not in the wicked women group.
Here is an area in our society where mothers are weak. It’s heart breaking to me when children observe and know their own mother is doing wicked things. We’ve studied drinking alcoholic beverages from the Bible, so you know I’m not talking about a glass of wine. I’m talking about a mother’s projection to her children and motherhood. What impact does this have on her children? Hannah expressed purity. Mom, you want moral purity from your children, but what example do you give them?
We could go on talking about Hannah being a woman of faith (1:18) knowing God would take care of her. She was a woman of praise (2:1-10). She said, “My heart rejoices in the LORD…” Mary mirrored her Magnificat after Hannah.
How is your profile mom? Do you maintain a right relationship with your husband in difficult situations at home? Do you worship with your worshiping husband? Do you have a right relationship with God yourself in spite of tough times at home? Are you a praying mom? What do you show your children concerning moral purity? God desires to use you to raise strong godly children and nothing is more important to a godly mother.
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