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Saturday, May 14, 2005

God the Rewarder

I hope you all had a wonderful Mothers’ Day basking in the love and attention of your loved ones. I hope you also took the time to reflect on the great honor God has paid you through the gift of motherhood, and to thank Him for it. Never take this gift, nor your family for granted. Last week’s blog dealt with two mothers who suffered broken hearts because of the sacrifices they were forced to make. This week we’ll examine how God rewarded the sacrifices of Jochebed, mother of Moses, and Hannah, mother of Samuel.

It must have taken a lot of faith and courage for Moses’ mother to hide him near the river to escape being killed by the Egyptian king. But Pharaoh’s daughter came down to the river to wash herself, spotted the basket and asked her maid to fetch it. Pharaoh’s daughter "... had compassion on the baby and said, This is one of the Hebrews’ children"(Ex 2: 6, KJV). His sister, who was watching, asked her if she should go and fetch one of the Hebrew women to nurse the child. Pharaoh’s daughter agreed, and Moses’ mother had the unexpected joy of being able to nurse her own child again.

Hannah was another mother who did something that most women would have found unthinkable. After being barren for a long time, Hannah poured out her heart to God and made a vow that if God would remember her affliction "... and give unto thine handmaid a man child, then I will give him unto the Lord all the days of his life ..." (1 Samuel 1:11, KJV) Why would she promise to give up something she so desperately wanted? I think the answer lies in this prayer that Hannah prayed. "They that were full have hired out themselves for bread; and they that were hungry hath ceased: so that the barren hath born seven; and she that hath many children is waxed feeble." Hannah knew God would reward her for her great faith and sacrifice. And He did. Samuel became a great prophet and the Lord blessed Hannah with three sons and two daughters.

Yes, as mothers we are called to sacrifice for the good of our children. It may not mean giving them up the way Hannah did, but someday we have to let them go to fulfill God’s call on their lives. They may go to college, work in a foreign land, get married or even enlist in the army. Whatever it may be, we have to be willing to give them up, as these two women did, confident in the knowledge that God has told us, "... Refrain thy voice from weeping and thine eyes from tears: for thy work shall be rewarded, saith the Lord ..." (Jer 31:16, KJV).
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