Summary: Moms usually find themselves in less than ideal situations, but the calling to motherhood includes doing the best you can in your less-than-ideal environment.
Moms Who Cannot Be June Cleaver
1. Not everyone has a gentle mom. A police recruit was asked during the exam, 'What would you do if you had to arrest your own mother?' He answered, 'Call for backup.' [myenglishpages.com]
2. Of course children perceive life quite differently from adults. For weeks a six-year-old lad kept telling his first-grade teacher about the baby brother or sister that was expected at his house.
One day the mother allowed the boy to feel the movements of the unborn child. The six-year old was obviously impressed, but made no comment. Furthermore, he stopped telling his teacher about the impending event.
The teacher finally sat the boy on her lap and said, "Tommy, whatever has become of that baby brother or sister you were expecting at home?"
Tommy burst into tears and confessed, "I think Mommy ate it!" [myenglishpages.com].
3. We live in an age when we can no longer stereotype motherhood, but perhaps we never could. No two mothers are alike, but few mothers live easy lives.
Main idea: Moms usually find themselves in less than ideal situations, but the calling to motherhood includes doing the best you can in your less-than-ideal environment.
I. The Prophet’s Nameless Widow: Single Mom Fighting POVERTY (2 Kings 4:1-7)
A. Many women find themselves single MOMS
According to the government census, “In 2010, of the 3.7 million women 15 to 44 years old who had a birth in the last year, 1.4 million (39 percent) were to women who were not married, who were separated, or married but with an absent spouse.”
B. She had to depend upon FRIENDS
1. Non-social people who keep to themselves often have no network
2. We don’t know about this woman, but we do her husband…
C. God took care of her, but not without STRESS
1. Nothing affects us like seeing our children miserable
2. Losing a child to slavery has to be one of the most grievious…
3. You can be sure she aged before she found Elisha
Application: This life is never Utopia. But God helps us to cope with what is!
II. Ahinoam: Married to a Man Who ONCE Served God (I Samuel 14:50)
“And the name of Saul's wife was Ahinoam the daughter of Ahimaaz. And the name of the commander of his army was Abner the son of Ner, Saul's uncle.”
A. King Saul had a promising start, but he turned AWAY
1. Many men or women suffer what feels like jumping ship
2. Many marriage in which a supposedly believing spouse falls away
3. We can imagine Ahinoam’s disappointment
B. She was the sole positive SPIRITUAL influence on her children
1. Five all together
2. The two we knew about were godly: Jonathan & daughter Michael
C. She had taught them that truth and honesty were thicker than BLOOD
1. They chose truth and the godly over their own family
2. Jesus: you have to love me more than father or mother…
3. Please note: Ahinoam succeeded…
Application: It is unsettling when we find out a blade of wheat is really a tare. Yet God can give strength even to those who must stand alone in fending for the kids.
III. Penninah the Relationally COMPETITIVE (I Samuel 1:2,6)
“He had two wives. The name of the one was Hannah, and the name of the other, Peninnah. And Peninnah had children, but Hannah had no children…And her rival used to provoke her grievously to irritate her, because the Lord had closed her womb.”
A. Shared Elkanah with HANNAH
B. Wanted to feel more loved, used her CHILDREN to gain advantage
C. Put Hannah down to elevate her own SELF-ESTEEM
Application: Although we do not have polygamy in US, you might be married to a competitive person, or you may have siblings or friends who are highly competitive. Or perhaps your friends are married but you are single. Refuse to play along. Stop caring about “who wins.” Life and relationships are not really games, though they may seem like it. Time vindicates. Replace competitiveness with patience.
IV. Elisheba, the Forgotten VICAR’S Wife (Exodus 6:23)
Aaron took as his wife Elisheba, the daughter of Amminadab and the sister of Nahshon, and she bore him Nadab, Abihu, Eleazar, and Ithamar.
A. Greek version of her name: ELIZABETH
B. From a prominent family in JUDAH
C. Married AARON
1. All priests descended from her
2. Symbolized union of priesthood and royalty under Messiah
Application: Many wives are content to live in the shadow of their husbands, and that’s not always bad; behind a great man is usually a great woman. Sometimes a glimpse of the dynamic, as was the case with Eleanor Roosevelt, for example.
V. Adah, the DISLIKED Daughter-in-law (Genesis 26:34, 36:2)
“Esau took his wives from the Canaanites: Adah the daughter of Elon the Hittite, Oholibamah the daughter of Anah the daughter of Zibeon the Hivite…”