mothers - suzanne harrell and mom

May is the time of year when we celebrate Mother’s Day. Ephesians 6:2 reminds us that we are to “Honor your father and mother.” It is always right to honor your mother. This year, we invited members of our congregation to share with us the secrets of being a great mother. Today’s post comes from Suzanne Harrell.

Defining ‘Great’

When I think of “great,” my years as a history major in college inevitably bring Alexander the Great to mind, who conquered countries and expanded his empire through sheer military prowess and power. My sister, on the other hand, thinks of the Great Depression when she thinks of “great,” where an entire country was plunged into an economic depression and forced to change lifestyles and learn to unite. defines “great” as “unusually . . . large in size”; “large in number”; “considerable in degree, power, or intensity”; “wonderful”; and “being such in an extreme or notable degree.” Pastor Osborne would invariably say that no one can be truly great except for God. While he is right, there are some people in my life who have had a great impact on me, and one of these people is my mother.

My Mother’s Dedication

My mother’s dedication has made a great impact on me. Throughout my life, my parents never had the easiest marriage. I can remember crying in my room while listening to them argue in the living room. I know now that all married couples occasionally argue, but when I was little it seemed like no marriage could survive such hurtful words. I once asked my parents if they would ever get a divorce, and I will never forget what they told me. They would never get a divorce, they said, because they were Christians, and they made a commitment before God to stay true to each other for the rest of their lives. I know that at times it was hard, but because of dedication to God and her family, my mom stuck it out and today shows her dedication through her care of and for us.

My Mother’s Love

My mother’s love is another thing that has made a great impact on my life. Whenever I was little and would burst into uncontrollable tears, my mother was the one who could make everything seem better just by putting her arms around me. When I would call home from college, homesick and lonely, my mother’s comfort and encouragement got me through it. To this day, when I’m upset and emotional, I’ll often cry, “I want my mom!” Although my sisters and I have given her more than our share of pain and heartache, she still loves enough to want what’s best for us and to do what she can to help us achieve that.

My Mother’s Example

Finally, my mother’s example has made a great impact on my life. I feel extremely blessed to have been raised in a Christian household. I often wonder: if it weren’t for my parents, would I have ever come to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ? Or would I be like many of my students—lost, lonely, and headed in all sorts of wrong directions? To point my sisters and I in the right direction, my mom made sure we were in church every Sunday. She homeschooled us and included Bible courses. She took us to AWANA and VBS. To this day, she advises us on our problems by pointing us to the Bible. My mother’s Christian example had a great impact on me.

My Mother Has Had a Great Impact on My Life

Because of her dedication, love, and Christian example, my mom has made, and continues to make, a great impact on my life. Some define “great” in terms of power and strength; some define it in terms of leadership; I define it in terms of personal impact. My mom has had a great impact on my life, and I love her so much.


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