Always be ready to give an explanation to anyone who asks you for a reason for your hope, but do it with gentleness and reverence, keeping your conscience clear
Thank you for joining today as we continue in our Easter joy. Christ is risen! He is risen indeed! Alleluia!
Scripture tells us of Peter’s mother-in-law, how Jesus healed her, and how she took care of Jesus and His disciples. Certainly, one of the many amazing, devoted women in Holy Scripture. I must imagine that Peter also had an amazing mom considering the letter that he wrote which we are reflecting on: Be ready to give an explanation to anyone who asks you for a reason for your hope, but do it with gentleness and reverence, keeping your conscience clear.
That is a mom statement if I ever heard one. I can hear my mom saying similar things. You know, those occasions when we are upset, feel misunderstood, or are angry and want to run off and do something not quite smart. Maybe the words were slightly different, yet they were the same: ‘Explain yourself clearly. Use your words. Do things with gentleness and reverence. Honor those you encounter. Do not sin. Act with integrity. Just because someone wronged you does not mean you should do wrong. Have a clear conscience.’
Consider some of the other moms of the Bible. Like our moms they were wonderful examples of devotion to God, His people, and their families.
Jochebed was the mother of Moses and would not let the commands of government overcome her love for her son. She refused to allow him to be killed, hid him, and saved him. Not only did she protect Moses, but she reverently placed his fate in the hands of God when she placed him in the basket in the Nile. Our moms have confidently placed us in the hands of God. They taught us to trust in God over all things.
Hannah was in despair because she was unable to have a child. She was deeply loved by her husband Elkanah, but still longed for a child of her own. Every time Hannah went to the Temple, she poured her heart out to God. God heard her, and she bore a son. Out of gratitude to the Lord, she surrendered her son back to God. Hannah gave her child to God because she knew it was the best she could do for him. Releasing control opened the door for God to do amazing things for Samuel, one of the greatest prophets. Our moms have prayed for us and have given us to God in baptism so that He bless us as well.
The Widow of Zarephath gave what little she had to feed the prophet Elijah. Amid famine and desperation, her reverent faith and trust in God was essential to her and her son’s survival. Later when her son died, she went to Elijah for help, and her son was saved. Our moms have had “famine” seasons where things seemed bleak and hopeless. During those times, they taught us that reverent trust and faith in God overcome even when things don’t make sense.
Elizabeth and Mary reverently surrendered themselves to God’s will even though His way seemed impossible from a human perspective. They act as the premier example of moms who allowed God’s will to be done.
If we have learned from our moms and the moms of the Bible, our ears are opened to what Jesus asks and promises: “Whoever has my commandments and observes them is the one who loves me. And whoever loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and reveal myself to him.” Let us honor the special women of our lives by our reverence to God and by living His gospel way of life.