Summary: A Mothers Day Sermon discussing what the "true" religion of parenting displays.

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Mother’s Day

John 2:1-12

ANSWERS to BLANKS: B—1—love of God and Neighbor; 2—“I believe in you!”; pain; 3—mother and grandmother.

A--Experiments of famed American psychologist Harry Harlow:

o Harlow conducted experiments on the nature of love using infant rhesus monkeys.

o Harlow’s interest was in how love developed between mother and child, and the effects of that relationship on later responses to affection.

o He created two fake mothers for his baby monkeys - one made of wire and one made of cloth and warmed from within by a light bulb.

Implications of Harlow’s experiments: Living creatures are not just robots engaged in a mindless search for fulfilling biological requirements. Instead, love is at the very core of our being, perhaps more than basic physical needs.

b—Stories on Being a mother

1--A tale about two different parenting responses: MORAL OF THE STORY--True religion is love.

Story #1:

A woman sat by her hearthside place

Reading her bible with a pleasant face,

‘Till a child came up with a childish frown,

Pushed the bible and said, “Put it down.”

Then the mother slapped his curly head and said,

“Troublesome child, go off to bed!

A great deal of God’s book I must know

To train you up as a child must go.”

The child went off to bed to cry

And denounced religion by and by.

Story #2:

Another woman bent over a bible

With a smile of joy and an intent look,

‘Till a child came up and pressed on her knee

And said of the bible, “Put it down; take me.

”And then the mother sighed as she stroked his head

Saying softly, “I will never get this read.

But I’ll try by loving to learn God’s will,

And God’s love unto my child instill.”

That child went to bed without a sigh

And will love religion by and by.

The true religion, the only religion that counts (no matter what name we call it) is love. Religion to me is a way of life. As a United Methodist, like John Wesley our founder, I believe that the method of life can be summed up in these words of Jesus:

… An expert in religious law, [asked] him … this question: “Teacher, which is the most important commandment in the law of Moses?” Jesus replied, “‘You must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.” Matthew 22:35-40 NLT

o A test for my own faith: ________________________________________

2—What I can learn from the story of Jesus’ mother, Mary. (John 2:1-12)

o Jesus’ mother’s affirmation to him in this miracle: “________________________________!

Jesus to the Apostle John, "Here is your mother." From that moment the disciple accepted her as his own mother.” John 20:27 MSG

o Jesus was caring for his mother, even while He was in great _____________.

3---Grandma Moses and her art work.

o Despite celebrity status in her later years, foremost she saw herself as

a __________ and ______________.

“Life is what you make it; always has been; always will be.” -- Grandma Moses

CONCLUSION: “When all is said, it is the mother, and the mother only, who is a better citizen than the soldier who fights for his country. The successful mother, the mother who does her part in rearing and training aright the boys and girls who are to be the generation of men and women of the next generation, is of better use to the country if only she would realize it. A more honorable as well as a more important position than any man, the mother is the one supreme asset of national life. She is more important, by far, than the successful statesman, businessman, artist, or scientist.” --Theodore Roosevelt

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