By Carolyn Tomlin


Lessons from Mom—

Bits of Wisdom to Last a Life Time


Honoring and celebrating our mothers goes back centuries—even to the ancient Greeks and Romans. However, recognizing Mother’s Day in the U.S. is a more recent event. Thanks to the efforts of Julia Ward Howe and Anna Jarvis, the modern Mother’s Day is a time to honor our mothers, thank them for giving us life, and helping us develop into the people we have become.


Instead of setting aside the second Sunday in May as the date to honor our mothers, this should be a daily event—365 days a year! Every day should be “Mother’s Day!”


In thinking about wise sayings from moms, I asked childhood friends, new acquaintances, and family to share some bits of wisdom recalled from their mothers. Just like the individuals who left us with these thoughts, some are humorous, others are wise or borrow from literature and the Bible. As you read through this list, think of personal ones you remember from your mom. Add them to the list. Share them with your children and grandchildren. And praise God for giving you a Christian mother.




  • If you plan to take an item with you—and if you have a baby—put the item with the baby. You won’t forget the baby!

  • Never date someone you wouldn’t want to marry.

  • Never learn to iron your husband’s white starched shirts—then you’ll never know how.

  • If anything is worth doing—it’s worth doing well.

  • Hold your shoulders up—don’t slouch.

  • Say what you will do, and do what you say.

  • If expecting company to your home for a meal, make sure you are ready ahead of time. Then, if a few minutes remain before their arrival, do those small jobs. Company often arrives early.

  • As a woman, be able to take care of yourself and any children you may have. Hopefully, there will be a husband. But unexpected things happen in life. Just be prepared.

  • Wash your hands often. Especially when you arrive home from a public place.

  • Don’t do today what you can put off until tomorrow.

  • Don’t count your chickens before they hatch.

  • The best time of the day comes in the early morning—just about sunrise.

  • There is always room for another plate around the table.

  • I never want to see a person or an animal around me who is hungry.

  • A friend recalls this verse from Numbers 6: 24-26 highlighted (with her name by written by it) inside a Bible belonging to her mother and found after she passed away. “May the Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace.”

  • A smile is the same in any language.

  • Be kind, son. Find that special person to share your life. She needs to be from a Christian home, possess good values and an extra measure of common sense—and of course, she must love you.

  • Speak the truth. Nothing outperforms the truth.

  • You can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear!

  • Finish what you start!

  • It’s not how much money a man (or woman) makes a day—it is how much they save that counts!

  • Some people come into our lives, leave footprints on our hearts, and we are never the same.

  • When traveling, the journey is often more important than the destination.

  • Give the Lord his tenth—and then some.

  • Treat others like you want to be treated.

  • Look for the good in people; there is always something positive about everyone.

  • Believe in yourself. You are wondrously made by God.

  • Above all, claim this verse: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11, NIV).


William Ross Wallace wrote in 1865, “The hand that rocks the cradle is the hand that rules the world.” Wallace praised motherhood as the preeminent force for change in the world. Christian mothers make a difference!


Carolyn Tomlin writes for the Christian market and teaches the Boot Camp for Christian Writers. You can email her at