Happy Mother’s Day! Or whatever. The photo – which is a snapshot from a montage wall that we have – is of the offspring when they were still willing to go out and about with us. It’s Tate Modern in St Ives. We were trying to introduce them to “Culture” You can see how well it went down with FOW1
I don’t believe in Mother’s Day or Mothering Sunday which is its real name and better I think. Not really. I mean I’ll take the extra ten minutes of attention that I get and I will scoff all the chocolates – I’m not an idiot, but what is it for though?
Nicer people than me say that it is a chance to say “Thank You” to your Mum. Why? Where has she been for the rest of the year? Locked away in the attic? Why can’t we say “Thanks for being a Very Nice Mum” on a wet Tuesday in February. She’ll probably have more need of a bit of encouragement then and the daffs would be cheaper.
Why do we have to wait until a set date that a card company gives us? Shouldn’t we be thinking of being a bit more thankful to lots of people – all through the year? (I’m ranting a bit now – I can feel it) I have no problem with people saying thanks. That is a good thing. Jesus liked thank-yous. I remember the story where he had healed people and only one came back to say thank you and, as a little girl, thinking that he was being suprisingly snippy about it.
They went, and while still on their way, became clean. One of them, when he realized that he was healed, turned around and came back, shouting his gratitude, glorifying God. He kneeled at Jesus’ feet, so grateful. He couldn’t thank him enough—and he was a Samaritan.
17-19 Jesus said, “Were not ten healed? Where are the nine? Can none be found to come back and give glory to God except this outsider?” Then he said to him, “Get up. On your way. Your faith has healed and saved you.”
I don’t think it was about good manners (although that costs nothing does it?) I think it is more about seeing where good things come from and acknowleding other people’s kindness and also us not being the centre of the world. Anyway, as I said, thank you is good. It is just putting these tags on it – Mothers, Fathers, Grandmas etc.
And it’s the people that get left out. I remember preaching once on Mother’s Day and being exhausted at the end because I had tied myself in knots all the way through, talking about it being great to be a Mum or to have a Mum but we mustn’t forget those who weren’t Mums, either because they didn’t want to be (it’s not for everybody) or maybe because they couldn’t be Mums and also those whose own Mums were no longer with us or those whose experience with their own Mums meant they were glad that they were no longer with them – even if that only meant that they lived a long way away in Kidderminster or something. That’s before we get onto those who are Mums but are dealing with their children being basic nightmares but still loving them etc etc
It’s not that I am against a celebration. I love a celebration. I love Christmas and Easter and, at a pinch, New Year. I like Harvest Festivals and I like the idea of Bonfire Night (Although celebrating people failing to blow up Parliament is probably best not talked about in the UK at the moment – not in the current political climate – don’t want anyone getting any ideas). I like these things because everyone is invited. You might not want to be part of them but you don’t get excluded because you haven’t given birth or because the whole Mum thing is just too painful.
One thing I do like is that, often in churches, they give out little posies or something to the ladies. But why should we have to wait for Mother’s Day? It would be equally as nice to come in one morning and find flowers or chocolates to be given out just because the leaders had felt like blessing people and making them cheery. And vice-versa. Someone once said to me that their pastor’s wife had looked really worn out and she wanted to take her some flowers but didn’t do it in case she thought she was creeping round her. That’s a shame. If you really do want to bless someone, rather than try and get into their good books and receive an invitation to the Leader’s Christmas Meal at the Beefeater, I suspect that good motives will always out and, if people take it the wrong way, that’s their problem. Do the nice thing and don’t worry what people think. (Re the Leadership Christmas Meal – I wouldn’t angle for it. Most of them aren’t all that. Christmas Meals I mean – not leaders -although….)
I think I may have over-ranted there. Sorry. I’m not trying to be a bad sport. Today – FOW1 and I will be visiting Aged Parent who takes Mother’s Day seriously and judges how seriously you take it by the size of the card that she gets. Woe betide you if you give her a beautiful but small card. (There speaks the voice of experience) Although, to give her her due, she’s easy to buy for on Mother’s Day. A big bunch of flowers (BIG), M&S Pineapple Cakes and four cans of Guinness. (Medicinal apparently – although my uncle used to say that it was like giving a donkey strawberries – I hope she never reads this blog)
Anyway, have a great day. Or don’t. You can ignore it if you want. It isn’t a big deal in the great scheme of things. Put three Hob Nobs in your mouth at once and watch High Society. Then think of someone you can buy some flowers for next week. They should be nice and cheap at Marks by Monday