MONDAY THOUGHT OF THE DAY (11th May 2020)
A very good morning to you. I want to wish all mothers a very blessed Mother’s Day which we all celebrated yesterday. Our theme today will centre around Motherhood as we celebrate and honour the indispensable task they perform.
This morning we shall begin with a morning prayer from the third Century.
Let us pray:
We give you thanks—yes, more than thanks O Lord our God, for all your goodness at all times, and in all places, because you have shielded, rescued, helped, and guided us all the days of our lives, and brought us unto this hour. We pray and entreat you, merciful God, to grant in your goodness that we may spend this day, and all the time of our lives, without sin, in fullness of joy, holiness, and in reverence of you. Drive away from us, O Lord, all envy, all fear, and all temptations. Bestow upon us what is good and right. Whatever sin we commit in thought, word, or deed, may you in your goodness and mercy be pleased to pardon. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil; through the grace, mercy, and love of Your only begotten Son. Amen.
The Collect of the Week
Fifth Sunday of Easter
Everliving God, whose Son Jesus Christ is the way, the truth, and the life: give us grace to love one another, to follow in the way of his commandments, and to share his risen life; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Our Bible reading today is taken from 2 Timothy 1:1-5. Paul is now in prison and he knows that he does not have long to live. In his passionate, personal and final letter, he wrote to young Timothy, his protégé whom Paul exhorted, encouraged, warned and commissioned. Paul begins by greeting Timothy, then sharing how much Timothy means to him and reminding Timothy of his upbringing in the faith.
Listen to Paul as he writes to Timothy…
Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, according to the promise of life in Christ Jesus, 2 To Timothy, my beloved son: Grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord. 3 I thank God, whom I serve with a clear conscience the way my forefathers did, as I constantly remember you in my prayers night and day, 4 longing to see you, even as I recall your tears, so that I may be filled with joy. 5 For I am mindful of the sincere faith within you, which first dwelt in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am sure that it is in you as well.
Among the obscure verses in the Scripture, one verse strikes me on Mother’s Day. Paul wrote in Romans 16:13 -“Give my greetings to Rufus, chosen in the Lord, and his mother and mine.” This statement could be taken two ways. First, it could mean that Paul had two distinct women in mind – the mother of Rufus and his own mother. Or, secondly, he could be saying: “I salute Rufus and his mother, who is like a mother to me”. Most biblical scholars agree on the latter and thus give tremendous credence to this remarkable woman who served as a mother figure for the great St Paul.
Mothers play a tremendous role in the formation of character, values and spirituality of their family especially in their children. Aptly, I now recall the greeting of St Paul to his protégé Timothy, “I have been reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also (2 Timothy 1:5).
And later on, Paul said in 2 Timothy 3:15 and that from childhood you have known the sacred writings which are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. Cleary Timothy’s mother and grandmother had done their righteous and holy work in young Timothy’s life.
In our pragmatic and competitive world, it is so easy to neglect and overlook the spiritual formation of our young ones. We seem to have so little time and so many things to prepare our children for a better future. While it is good to build strong IQs and EQs in our children, let us not forsake their spiritual formation or SQ (spiritual quotient). In fact, the latter is most important for “godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come” (1 Timothy 4:8).
I salute all mothers and godmothers who take the time with their children and god-children in spiritual matters through daily prayers, reading the Bible, worshipping God on Sundays and encouraging them in their Christian education. I also thank all who are directly and indirectly involved in the Christian education of our young. Your labour of love is your investment of life and values for eternity.
And for those who perhaps have overlooked the importance of spiritual formation in the lives of your children, it is never too late to start afresh! May I encourage you to start today. May your prayers and your example for them and your example to them be a channel God can use to move their hearts towards Him. To my dearest mother who is 96 years old and also all who are “mothers” to me, have a blessed Mother’s Day! 
Let us pray:
A Mother’s Day Prayer
Dear Father, we approach your throne on behalf of all mothers throughout the world. We thank you for creating each mother with a unique combination of gifts and talents. We thank you for their great self-sacrifice through their gift of time, their tirelessness, their perseverance, and their devotion for their children.
We pray that you will give to each mother strength. Help her to see that in every mundane task, the eternal significance that you place on motherhood. Help her to understand that the most radical, world-changing events may be happening anonymously in her home. Help her to forgive those who undermine her significance.
We especially pray for single mothers, who must lean solely on you for parenting their children. We also pray for mothers who never had the experience of bearing children, but whose nurturing extends to the many poor and needy children.
Lord, give each mother a worshipful reverence of you. Help each mother to rest in the knowledge that they are your stewards of their own children.
May you be their daily bread, their living water, their source of spiritual and physical strength.
Most of all, Lord, on this day in which we honour mothers, may we love and cherish the special women who have born us, who have nurtured us, who have disciplined us and who have prayed for our well-being. May our hearts overflow with gratitude to you, who formed and knitted each of us in a mother’s womb. Amen.
The Morning Collect
Eternal God and Father, by whose power we are created and by whose love we are redeemed: guide and strengthen us by your Spirit, that we may give ourselves to your service, and live this day in love to one another and to you; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
A very good morning to you.
 Prayers of the Early Church; J Manning Potts (Ed.) The Upper Room, Nashville, Tennessee. 1953. (p.37.)
 Adapted from an article by Bishop John Yeo, 2002.