They made an announcement at church yesterday about Mother’s Day next weekend. As he reminded everyone to do something special for moms, Andrew jokingly asked if you have to be a mom to “qualify.” Everyone laughed and it was kind of left hanging until I stood up to teach, at which point I assured everyone in the room that you don’t have to be a mom. I urged them that when in doubt, you buy flowers. That’s really just a good male-life-preserving rule to live by. It really doesn’t matter who’s right or wrong, what you do or don’t know. When in doubt, buy flowers. Of course if you know her wants/tastes better, go with that. My point is: gifts make girls happy. Period. Not because we are greedy, but because we were designed to desire being cherished. So cherish her. You can get an “I’m not even a mom!” kiss or the alternative. The choice is yours. I’m just saying…
While all of the above is true, there’s another reason I made a point to answer the rhetorical question “do you have to be a mom to qualify”. This question bothers me. I wasn’t offended. I’m not being a crazy fanatic. This just happens to be one of those things I can’t joke about. It’s too personal. I’m too passionate. Do you have those things? Things you feel so strongly about that even though you know no one meant any harm, you just can’t take it lightly?
This is it for me.
If you are a woman, you were designed with an innate ability to nurture. Even if you think that doesn’t apply to you or that’s not how you want to see yourself – you were created to nurture life in those around you. They may be your own kids or someone else’s. They may be in your classroom or down the street. You may nurture by spending time or speaking encouragement or standing firm when all they’re used to is shaky ground.
That’s the definition of a mom. Moms do the work. They give hugs, hold hands and speak Truth. They discipline when necessary and wipe tears afterwards. They feed and teach and love.
Whether the children she nurtures live in her house or not, each woman has the heart of a mom within her. Our culture doesn’t always think that way. We reward those who “overcome stereotypes.” We applaud those who live counter to the “traditional roles of women.” Now you all know I’m the first to say girls are strong and powerful and can do anything they put their minds to. This is not an anti-feminist rant. This is me, reminding you, that in your heart, whether anyone sees or knows…you are a mom. You were created to nurture life.
That woman you sit near at work – she’s a mom. It may not be by choice that she’s never had kids. It may be that her kids live in Heaven. It may be that she’s chosen not to have children of her own. Either way, get her flowers. You don’t have to know the answers to those questions. She’s already qualified.
Her heart is the heart of a mom.