Collect and Readings for Sunday 14th March 2021 – Service for Mothering Sunday at All Saints, Marthall 9:30am. The Fourth Sunday of Lent
Readings: Exodus 2.1-10, 1 Samuel 1.20-end, Psalm 34.11-20, Psalm 127.1-4, 2 Corinthians 1.3-7, Colossians 3.12-17, Luke 2.33-35, John 19.25b-27
The Prayer for today
God of compassion, whose Son Jesus Christ, 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 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. Amen.
I am sure from the television adverts you will all be aware that this Sunday is marked as 'Mother's Day' or as the Church refers to it 'Mothering Sunday'. I think that there is a subtle difference. The dictionary definition of a mother is 'a woman in relation to her children'. Which is factually correct but can exclude a huge part of our society. I therefore, prefer to think about this Sunday as the church describes it, 'Mothering Sunday'. The definition of mothering is 'relating to or characteristic of a mother especially being caring, protective and kind'.
Our readings today give us some examples of mothers and families and show us the 'mothering' qualities in practice. In our society today there are lots of different kinds of families and support networks and our readings reflect some of the ups and downs that we all experience in life. In the last twelve months we can't help but have been touch by gestures of kindness, at times found life to be very dull and boring and then of course for many there have been times of extreme pain and sadness. It is in these times that we see God's tender comforting love giving us strength to be healed and carry on.
In these challenging times, when patience is tried and tested, we need to be listening for God's help and guidance to continue 'mothering', by showing care and compassion for those who are vulnerable, by being kind and loving towards each other and protecting those who are less fortunate than ourselves. Jesus said, the most important things are to 'love God and love your neighbour' and he knew that when you love someone you become vulnerable and potentially open yourself up to disappointment and hurt. However, the risk is worth it because when you love someone freely and unconditionally the response can bring real joy. It is this unconditional love that is God's free gift to us who ever we are and whatever we have done. If we could live our lives 'mothering' wouldn't our community and the world be a much better place?
Things to do and think about:
God bless and stay safe and well
Rev'd Fiona Robinson