Summary: 1. No one is too insignificant for God to use them if their heart is right. 2. If God says it – we are to believe it – otherwise we are calling God a liar and 3. If we really want to be disciples of Christ we must love Jesus and be obedient to God's will
Collect for Mothering Sunday
God of compassion,
whose Son Jesus Christ, the child of Mary, shared the life of a home in Nazareth,
and on the cross drew the whole human family to himself:
strengthen us in our daily living
that in joy and in sorrow
we may know the power of your presence to bind together and to heal;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.
Loving God, as a mother feeds her children at the breast you feed us in this sacrament with the food and drink of eternal life:
help us who have tasted your goodness
to grow in grace within the household of faith;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Luke 1: 26-38
26 In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, 27 to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. 28 The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.”
29 Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. 30 But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid,Mary; you have found favor with God. 31 You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.”
34 “How will this be,” Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin?”
35 The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called[b] the Son of God. 36 Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be unable to conceive is in her sixth month. 37 For no word from God will ever fail.”
38 “I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May your word to me be fulfilled.” Then the angel left her.
Story: I came across this story that happened during the Holocaust in the Second World War.
Solomon Rosenberg, his wife and their 2 sons were arrested, together with his mother and father for the crime of being Jews.
They were placed in a Nazi concentration camp.
It was a labour camp, and the rules were simple.
"As long as you can do your work, you will be permitted to live.
When you become too weak to do your work, then you will be exterminated."
Rosenberg watched his mother and father being marched off to their deaths as they became too weak to work.
He knew that the next would be his youngest son, David - because David had always been a frail child.
Every evening, Rosenberg came back into the barracks after his hours of hard labour and searched the faces for his family.
When he found them they would huddle together, embrace one another and thank God for another day of life.
One day Rosenberg came back and didn’t see those familiar faces.
He finally found his oldest son, Joshua, in a corner, huddled, weeping and praying.
He said, "Josh, tell me it’s not true."
Joshua turned and said, "It is true, Dad. Today David was not strong enough to do his work. So they came for him."
"But where is your mother?" asked Mr. Rosenberg.
"Oh Dad," he said, "When they came for David, he was afraid and he cried.
So Mum said, `There is nothing to be afraid of, David,’ and she took his hand and went with him."
A mother’s love that was so strong that she would willingly sacrifice her life to comfort her child.
The story still takes my breath away and I have told it lots of times.
There is something very special about a mother’s bond with her son.
And Mary, Jesus Mother is no different.
There was Jesus’ very special birth heralded by the angel Gabriel.
Every Mum thinks her little boy is special but Jesus was a bit more special than others.
Mary heard the prophecies of Simeon and Anna about her little boy - that we read in the Gospel reading today and I wonder what she thought
Today I want us to look at the characteristics of the mother that God choose to raise his Son.
And as we look at Mary we will see that she is a model of motherhood.