Summary: I talk about a child’s responsibility to obey and honor his/her parents no matter what kind of homelife situation.
Search for Significance for Children
OPENING ILLUSTRATION: Several years ago while still in college I decided to get my truck refinanced. My grandparents (who cosigned the truck) and I were getting some information to the bank. After corresponding with a bank representative I had to fax some signed papers to her. On the cover page to one of the faxes I sent I simply wrote a quick thanks for your help note, signed my name and drew a quick smiley face and said have a nice day—God bless you. I never thought about that again until my grandmother called the next couple of days. She told me that the bank rep had called her and was in tears. My grandmother said, the bank rep told us you made her day. I said “how?’ My grandmother responded, because of the happy face you drew. I thought to myself, “this woman doesn’t get out much.” My grandmother put it all in perspective. “You don’t understand”, she said. “She just lost her dad a week ago. Since he lived in England she was not able to go to the funeral. That happy face was the nicest thing anyone has done for her all week.” I realized that then that sometimes the little things in life make the most significance.
But children, obedience to your parents is no small thing to God. It can be one of the most important things you do at home.
It’s obvious that we don’t have to learn how to be disobedient. Proverbs 22:15, says, “Folly is bound up in the heart of a child, but the rod of discipline will drive it far from him.” Our parents never grounded us for not doing bad things. My mom never said to me, Lynn you have been too darn obedient, go to your room and don’t come out until you break something! God has given you parents for a reason. God has entrusted you to your parents for them to take care of you. One day God will give you children for you to take care of. The primary place where you learn obedience is in the home.
Why is it important for children to obey their parents? Let’s read our text found in Ephesians 6:1-3. “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise—“that is may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”
First of all we see that it is the Spiritual thing to do. Notice Paul said, “Children, obey your parents in the Lord…” What Paul is saying here is that for children, obedience to parents is comparable to obedience to God when what their parents are asking them to do agrees with God’s instructions. Now, again there is a key understanding we cannot overlook. Parents, are you giving them reason to obey you in the Lord? In other words is what you are asking them to do in line with what God would have them do? Children, you won’t find anywhere in the Bible an excuse not to clean your room. But you will find in the Bible where you should be living clean! If we want our kids to live right parents must ask themselves the question, “Am I living right?” So if you are a child still living at home you are responsible and accountable for obeying your parents. Your reaction to them should be, “Dad, Mom, unless you tell me to disobey God, I am going to obey you. I may not always like it, and I may not always agree with it. But I am the child, and you are the parents. I want to please God by obeying you.”
Teenagers and children do you know what kind of difference this will make in your home? Do you know what kind of a testimony this would be to your friends! God’s not asking you to agree and like everything your parent does (by the way they don’t like everything you do) but he is asking that you obey their authority over you.
Obeying parents is not only the spiritual thing to do but it is also the right thing to do. Let’s look back at our text. “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. It is God’s will. Children, are you looking for God’s will at home? Obey your parents. It is the right thing to do because parents bring children into the world and provide for their care. It’s also the right thing to do because parents have been around longer. Now I know you young people get tired of hearing that but it is true. Now that I’m almost thirty I am beginning to realize how much my parents did know about what I was going through. So, remember obeying God is the right thing to do.