Mother's Day reminds us of many of the important roles that mothers fulfill. Mothers are more than nurturers and educators, they are often leaders.
We often think of Moses as a great leader. After all he confronted Pharaoh, the most powerful leader of the time, led the Israelites from bondage to freedom, molded the Israelites through the challenges of the wilderness, and prepared a new generation of leaders to one day conquer the Promised Land.
But behind Moses was a woman of great faith—his mother. Moses’ mother, Jochebed, had the courage to defy Pharaoh’s orders to throw her son into the waters of the Nile. When the very life of her family was threatened if she did not follow the orders of Pharaoh, she had the faith to fashion a basket out of papyrus, then cover it with tar and pitch to waterproof it, and with trust in God place it in the turgid waters of the Nile, then pray fervently for a miracle. Thankfully, a miracle came. Pharaoh’s daughter, bathing in the river, her entourage close at hand, heard the child’s cry and saw the basket. She sent her slave girl to retrieve the basket from the waters of the Nile. Peering inside, she saw the beautiful child and felt compassion for the young Hebrew child. Wishing to keep the infant, she held him tenderly, but her heart was troubled because she had no way of nursing the young infant. Jochebed’s sister, watching nearby, cleverly volunteered to get a Hebrew woman to nursemaid the child. Unbeknownst to Pharaoh’s daughter, it would be the baby’s own mother.
Jochebed then had the courage and strength to secretly tutor young Moses in the Hebrew faith in the shadow of the very household of Pharaoh.
Without Moses’ mother, there would be no Moses. She was a woman of strength of faith, as are so many mothers. She poured her strength and faith into young Moses that he could become the leader he would one day be. Take a moment and thank your mother for all she has meant to you.
Dr TJ Jenney, PhD
Rev. Dr. T. J. Jenney, Ph.D. is a seasoned pastor and leader who has served churches as well as served as a campus minister and chaplain for police and fire departments as well as the Air Force Auxiliary. Dr. Jenney also served as a faculty member at Purdue University, serving as an adjunct professor in Organizational Leadership. His experience includes serving as a president and CEO of non-profit organizations. He holds a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology and Higher Education Administration from Purdue and an M.Div and an S.T.M. from Yale University. He served as a contributing editor of William B. Eerdmans Bible Dictionary (1989) and Eerdmans Dictionary of the Bible (2000), as well as written articles for journals.