Summary: If you are not living a totally blessed life it may be because you are not fully obeying God’s commands to honor your parents. If you feel that you may be one of these, forgiveness, grace and strength is yours for the asking.

Honor Your Father and Your Mother

Some of us have a harder time feeling like honoring our parents because of past and present abuses. Yet, God did not make a mistake in giving us the parents we have. Evidence of that is giving by the truth in Psalm 139:

"You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body, and knit them together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex!.......You were there while I was being formed in utter seclusion! You saw me before I was born andscheduled each day of my life before I began to breathe. Every day was recorded in your Book! How precious it is, Lord, to realize that you are thinking about me constantly! I can’t even count how many times a day your thoughts turn towards me. And when I waken in the morning, you are still thinking of me!"

(verses 13-18)

With that truth I can thank God for my parents, but particularly for my Dad. Because of the sovereignty of God, He gave me a choleric father who is very demanding, authoritative and dictatorial. I have learned that adult children are not asked to be subservient to domineering parents. We are not expected to or commanded to disobey God to obey parents. Our responsibility is to honor our parents which means to respect and to love. Recently, I honored my Dad by showing respect, love and service as well as witness of the salvation found in the saving faith in the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and God blessed me in many wonderful ways.

Now I can understand, accept and fully obey the command that comes from Ephesians 6:1-3:

"Children, obey your parents; this is the right thing to do because GOD has placed them in authority over you. Honor your father and mother. This is the first of God’s Ten Command-ments that ends with a promise. And this is the promise: that if you

honor your father and mother, yours will be a LONG life, full of blessing." (Ephesians 6:1-3 Living)

When you look up the Hebrew meaning for the word "LONG" you will find that it is defined as meaning:

Rectitude...straight, honest, upright and true...

And when we see what the word "honor" means, we find that it is the same word used by Jesus in John 8:49 when he said he honored His Father:

to prize, value, revere, respect and love

We need to remember the first command that guarantees a promise of blessings. If we can’t obey thefirst commandment given to us as children, how will we ever obey the rest? God’s commands are for us good spiritually, emotionally, socially, mentally, economically and physically as well as in every other dimension of life. He wants to bless us so we can be a blessing to others.

Honor: Show me the man you honor and I will know what kind of man you are.

Thomas Carlyle.

Was this going to be easy? Absolutely not! I questioned God: How could I forgive, prize, value and revere someone like my father. The Lord spoke to me, "Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good." (Rom. 12:21)

God said to me, In the way I forgive you you are also to forgive and put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with one another, forgive one another just as Christ has forgiven you for the greater glory of God. (Eph. 4:28-32) You can do all things through the strength, love, power, wisdom, enablement, enlightenment, empowering, equipping, and enriching that I give you through my word and Spirit.

Now I see that only when I release, relinquish and cast my hurts on to the Lord can He heal, restore and transform me. The Lord wants to teach me greater, higher and more creative ways to grow in Christ likeness by using my sand-paper father to refine me into His image. Just as God used my father in the past and in the present so he will use him in the future for His greater purposes that are above my ability to understand at the time. I am also trusting that God will use this love shown to my father to bring him to a saving knowledge and personal relationship with Jesus Christ as His Savior and Lord. Please pray to that end.

1. We all have a continual choice to make between becoming bitter or better. I choose to be better with every situation as I know that God works all things together for good for those of us who love God and are called according to His purposes - the purpose of becoming more like HIs Son - Jesus Christ. (Rom. 8:28,29) Too many of us read verse 28 without realizing that the good He is working is the transforming us more into Christlikeness.

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