In Jewish tradition, Mother’s Day is a weekly event. Every Friday night, Jewish husbands return from synagogue to celebrate Sabbath, and begin by singing Proverbs 31 to their wives, the biblical text about the woman of valor, or the woman of noble character. Each week, Jewish families honor the value of a godly mother.
Although that’s the indispensable tradition in which I was raised, I was wondering, what does the New Testament add to our understanding of godly motherhood? It doesn’t teach that moms must be perfect or as powerful than Wonder Woman or outdo even Martha Stewart at home. But it does reveal these two principles of how to be a supermom. They’re both from 2 Timothy and relate to Timothy’s mom.
First, supermoms model faith for their kids. In 2 Timothy 1:5, Paul is in the midst of thanking God and he explicitly mentions that he is grateful because he clearly recalls Timothy’s, “sincere faith that first lived in your grandmother Lois, then in your mother Eunice, and that I am convinced is in you also.” Timothy’s grandmother and mother practiced generational discipleship—the transference of faith in the Messiah Jesus from one generation to the next. Godly moms need to have their own genuine faith walk with Messiah Jesus and they’ll become godly role models for their kids.
Remember more is caught than explicitly taught. All kids want to be like their parents, carefully observing them and then emulating them. That’s why little girls want to dress up in Mom’s clothes or where their makeup. It’s why little boys want to cook or bake with Mom. My boys, when they were toddlers, had a little broom that they used to sweep the floor, when their mom would sweep the kitchen. This role modeling grows. so that the role of godly motherhood extends beyond common chores to exemplifying a daily walk with God.
In my life, I always remember my own Mom’s faith and obedience to God in the midst of adversity. She remained devoted to the Lord, even during her time in a Nazi concentration camp. So when I face difficult times, I remember how my Mom dealt with hardship, and she remains a role model for me. I also remember, how, as she entered her senior years, even in poor health, she practiced hospitality, opening her home, caring for fellow believers, especially those who needed a place to stay or a meal. That remains a godly example to me.
Second, supermoms teach the Scriptures to their kids. In 2 Timothy 3:14-15, Paul tells Timothy, “But as for you, continue in what you have learned and firmly believed, knowing those from whom you learned, and that from childhood you have known the sacred Scriptures, which are able to instruct you for salvation through faith in Messiah Jesus.” Obviously, Paul had taught the Scriptures to Timothy. But that’s not where Timothy’s biblical education began. It started with his mom—that’s how Timothy knew God’s Word since childhood.
It is so crucial for moms to teach their kids. Moms begin with story books and songs, and as kids mature, it should proceed to daily time in the Word of God with their kids. My wife Eva is the ultimate example of this. She has taught our now adult sons so much. She has taught them to love old movies, Shakespeare’s plays, the beauty of plants and trees, the wonder of wildlife. She has given them many lessons, but most of all, she has taught them the Scriptures. She read them Bible books, taught their Bible classes at congregation (along with teaching lots of other kids), discussed the Word around the dinner table, and lived it before them every day.
Just a word of encouragement to moms whose adult kids may be off the track right now. Remember, if you modeled faith and taught the Scriptures to your kids, you’ve done your part. Now keep strong in the Lord, trust Him and let Him do His part in the life of your kids. The good Shepherd cares for the sheep more than we ever will. He loves our children and will work His will in their lives. We can trust the Lord to bring them back to Himself. Happy Mother’s Day!