How Can You Show Love and Respect to Your Parents?
When was the last time you called your mother or father? Respecting and honoring your earthly parents is part of our faith as Christians. In fact, the teaching dates back thousands of years to the Jewish faith. When Moses brought the Ten Commandments down the mountain, the list that God had given was specifically how to lead a moral and honorable life. And part of the moral life was to honor your mother and father!
But in the modern world, actually showing your parents honor is a little trickier than you might think. What does it really mean?
It’s not just about being nice to them. Instead, it’s about finding ways to show gratitude for all that they have brought into your life. It’s also about continuing their legacy. The parent-child relationship is the first relationship you have and it should last a lifetime.
Ways to Honor Your Mother and Father
Call Them More Often
Many families only meet up with their elderly relatives over the holidays and Thanksgiving. Relatively few remain in regular contact throughout the year – and that’s a tragedy. But what’s really going on here?
It’s mainly two things. The first is that elderly relatives don’t want to intrude on the lives of young people in their families. They want them to get on with their own thing and not have to worry about what their parents are doing.
On the flip side, younger people tend to be extremely busy. Adult children often have little time for their parents. The combination of work, children and social commitments means that they don’t usually have time to meet the needs of their aging parents.
The trick here is to set up a time to call them every week so that you can slot them into your routine. Ringing up to say “hello” and chat can be a great way to show them respect and ensure that you meet their needs.
Talk To Them About Their Days
When you make a phone call, always talk to them about their day. Ask them what they did and what happened.
Pay particular attention to their comments and remarks if they are in a nursing home. In all likelihood, they are okay, but issues can arise. Diligent nursing home abuse attorneys always advise family members to ask their relatives questions and discuss anything out of the ordinary.
Eat With Them
Eating together is one of the most cherished social customs – and something that families can’t really function without. Not only does it nourish the body, but it also provides opportunities for everyone to catch up with what other people are doing.
If your parents are in a senior home, you can still visit them. Or you can get them a taxi so that they can have dinner with you and then return to their residence later.
Ask For Advice
Honoring your parents also involves asking them for their advice. In many cases, they can offer deep wisdom garnered over many years. Talk to them about anything you feel comfortable bringing up – from dating to finances. Their main goal will be to help you avoid some of the mistakes that they made when they were younger.
If your parents are retired, they no longer have the same work-related social events to look forward to. In some cases, this can make them feel isolated and lonely. Thus, when they do have a conversation, they want somebody who will listen properly.
Listening is a great way to honor your mother and father. You can be their listening ear. Take the time to absorb everything they say and help them connect with others.
Attend Church with Your Parents
There are several important ways to show your parents just how much they mean to you. Attending church service with your parents for a special occasion such as Easter or Christmas it is a great privilege for your parents. Another special day to go to church is Mother’s Day or Father’s Day.
Figure Out How to Reconnect
Many times, estrangement from our parents begins in high school. Because we live in a fallen world and our minds don’t let us believe that we are ever wrong, we may have rejected our parent’s advice. Maybe you are now to stubborn to admit that you walked away from the relationship. I can assure you that your parents are most likely wanting a real relationship with you. If you have young children, you want to model a God’s plan for the family and that is not being estranged from your own parents.
Furthermore, you want to model the kind of honor in different ways than your children will see from the world. The entire Bible is filled with great advice for real relationships.
What the Holy Bible Says about Honoring your Father and Mother
If you want to start someone, the Book of Proverbs is excellent advice for relationships. Additionally, God’s commandments tell us how to live holy lives. In the Old Testament God gave Moses the 10 Commandements on Mount Sinai. The fifth commandment says, “Honor your father and mother.” This is the first commandment to talk about our relationships. The first 4 commandments talk about our relationship with our Heavenly Father.
Additionally, Deuteronomy 5:33 says, “You shall walk in all the way which the Lord your God has commanded you, that you may live and that it may be well with you, and they you may prolong your days in the land which you will possess.”
The Old Testament is not the only place where God’s word talks about honoring your parents. In the New Testament the Apostle Paul says in Ephesians 6:1-4 says, “Children, obey your parents in the Lord for this is right. Honor Your Father and Mother (which is the first commandment with a promise), so that it may be well with you and that you may live long on the earth.”
God actually gives a promise that if we honor parents you may have a long life. One of the best ways to teach your children to respect your is to model that respect in how you treat your parents. In our old age, our own children will have watched us honoring our parents.
What about those relationships where because of the parents’ sin it is extremely traumatizing? God knows your heart and that your desire is to have restoration and forgiveness. God’s love can bring about
Don’t wait until your parent’s last days to have a relationship with them. If you don’t know how to have a relationship with healthy boundaries, ask Holy Spirit to give you guidance in establishing a connection with your parents that doesn’t wreck your life.
Additionally, the care of our parents as they age can be stressful especially if you do not have a great relationship with them. You may need to seek counseling to help you deal with childhood (or adult) trauma.
Whatever your circumstances, having a relationship with your parents and honoring them will always be the right thing to do! This concept of showing honor to your mother and father was important enough for God to mention it, and therefore, it is important enough to carry it out!
Homeschooling mom – 26 years and counting
Movie reviewer/Travel blogger