Summary: This Mother's Day sermon spotlights Hannah--her problems, her prayer, and her promise. It also includes a baby dedication ceremony built into the sermon.
Mother’s Day 2014: Hannah
Scott Bayles, pastor
Blooming Grove Christian Church: 5/11/2014
Have you found the perfect Mother’s Day present yet? If not, let me make a recommendation. In the Bible, in the book of Exodus, God gave us commandments for how we should live, how we should act toward him, and one another. And right in the middle of really heavy statements like “you shall have no other gods before me” and “you shall not murder,” he gave us the fifth commandment: “Honor your mother and father.” Honor means to regard with great respect, to recognize, or to esteem. The fact that God even added “honor your mother and father” to the Ten Commandments should show us how important it is. There are lots of things you can give your mom on Mother’s Day—whether it’s breakfast in bed, or a day at the spa—but let’s not forget the most important thing. The best gift you can give your mom is to honor her. That’s what we want to do here today—honor the moms of Blooming Grove.
As beautiful an occasion as this is, however, Mother’s Day can also be a challenge for many of us. Some of us can’t help but reflect on ways we wish we’d been better parents—or had better parents—and some of us wish we’d been better sons and daughters to our parents. For some, Mother’s Day is a painful reminder of wayward children, broken relationships, even painful loss. Others among us have long and desperately desired to have children, to start a family, yet have been denied that blessing. But whatever may be going on in your heart and life today, I believe God has a message for you, a message that—if you’ll let it—will take root in your heart and mind and make this a day to remember and treasure.
It’s a message that involves one of the most famous mothers in history, yet it can apply to men as much as to women, to those who are expecting and those who have long stopped expecting, to any who are hurting as much as to those who are happy.
This story takes place in the Old Testament, in the first chapter of First Samuel. There in 1 Samuel 1, we discover the story of Hannah, the mother of Samuel. Hannah’s story is one of both heartache and happiness. God knew that her story could touch the hearts of weary moms a thousand generations later, so I’d like to invite you to ponder her story, and as you do, perhaps, discover your own. Her story starts off with a problem.
• HER PROBLEM
The first verse of 1 Samuel 1, tells us Hannah was the wife of a man named Elkanah. But that wasn’t her problem. The problem was she wasn’t his only wife. Elkanah had another wife named Peninnah. Here’s how Scripture sums up Hannah’s problem: “Peninnah had children, but Hannah did not… 6So Peninnah would taunt Hannah and make fun of her because the Lord had kept her from having children. 7Year after year it was the same—Peninnah would taunt Hannah as they went to the Tabernacle. Each time, Hannah would be reduced to tears and would not even eat” (1 Samuel 1:2-7 NLT).