Today’s post is not to teach or address what parents should and shouldn’t do. It is to teach or remind us of our response and our obligation to our parents. A vast majority of my followers are Christians. Being that i am a christian blogger, my views are based on the bible. So i understand it might not always go down well with everyone. I owe it to God to write based on His undiluted truths. So sorry if this post gives you and ouch or even irritates you.
The Hebrew word for honour is Kabed. Kabed is derived from a root word which means ‘weighty’ or ‘to give weight’. It means to make something heavy. If an empty glass is put on a scale, it won’t weigh much. But when that empty glass is filled with flour, it will weigh heavier than it was originally.
I understand this is a very sensitive topic to people and to be honest i struggled with posting this. However i realise that as a representative of Christ, i have to share the truth always. Nothing in the bible says we should exalt our feelings above the truth of God. It does say that there is a constant battle between the flesh and the spirit and the side we yield to shows what we are governed by. It also says that as many that are led by the spirit of God are the sons of God. Being led by the spirit means to follow what the word of God says. Not logical reasoning. Not our feelings and emotions. Not our will.
It’s important we understand that God loves us and He sees and fully understands our circumstances. He knew what family we will be born into when He inspired the writer of the above scripture to write this down. He understands that some parents will chose to be cowards and run away from their parental duties. He knew that some dads and mums will be difficult to please. He knew that there will be a season when you will decide never to speak with your dad ever again. Yes He knows. But He still wants you to honour them. Why?
- Because He said so
- Because it benefits to do so. The blessing attached to this commandment is long life. Not for our parents but for ourselves.
- So that it may be well with you.
- So that you will have long life
As i was meditating on this bible scripture few weeks ago, i was thinking about the repercussions for disobeying this commandment. My mind went to my country. It is typical these days to see kids dishonour their parents not just privately but publicly. It grieves my spirit indeed. Could the lack of honouring parents be a reason behind the killings we see? The opposite of the blessing in the above scripture is a curse. I will leave that there.
It’s important to note that honour isn’t the same thing as obedience. You can honour someone without obeying that person. As a grown woman, i am under no obligation to obey my parents because they are no longer responsible for me. There are times i disagree with my parents on certain issues and that is ok.
Now you might be asking ‘but how do i honour my parents?’
- Forgive them
‘Huh? That man was never in my life. He was never present. I saw the hell my mum went through to put food on our table. He didn’t fulfill his duties as a dad. He provokes me to wrath always……’ Still forgive.
This is why i mentioned at the beginning that this post might not be what you want to hear or what you have been hearing. It’s hard but God will not tell us to do what He hasn’t graced us to do. The ability to forgive is in you. Reach out to God to make you see it.
I will like to quickly say that depending on the scenario, it might not be wise to trust so quickly again. We have been commanded to forgive not trust. Forgiveness is given freely but trust is and should be earned. So you might have to forgive but still maintain a certain level of boundary.
- Provide for them
Simple. At the end of the day, they are still your parents. If you have, provide for them.
- Support them
Mama and papa need help as they grow. It saddens my heart sometimes when i compare how my parents looked 10 years ago to how they look now. They are no longer as strong as they used to be. Time and age is telling on them. David, when he thought of old age, cried to God and said “Do not cast me off in the time of old age; forsake me not when my strength is spent” (Psalm 71:9). Old age is isolating. Remind your parents always that you are there for them. They’ve passed the baton of strength to you. Don’t use that same baton to knock them down.
- Speak well of them. Let them know what it is they have done well
As a parent, i think this is my favourite. There is no manual attached to kids when they come into the world. Every parent is still trying to figure out the best way to go about parenting. And sometimes children have too much expectations from their parents. When those expectations are not meant, they are disappointed. This further grows into resentment and oftentimes they carry that resentment into adulthood. Instead of always commenting on what they didn’t do right, also tell them what they did or are doing well. Below is something Isabella shared with me 2 weeks ago.
Are the words you say about your parents making them weighty or light?
Maybe dad never told you verbally that he loved you. But did he always show up in your school meetings?
Maybe he never went to church or prayed over you. But did he bake good potatoes?
Maybe mum was very harsh on you but did she ensure there was dinner every time you came home?
Maybe there is nothing good to remember about mum and dad but did God tell you to forgive anyway?
This brings the story of Noah and his sons to mind. After the flood, Noah and his family were the only once living on earth. I have seen and heard where many people have chastised Noah for getting drunk but if we put his situation in context we will understand the level of depression he was going through at that time. Everything except his immediate family members was wiped out. Lonely, and possibly depressed he drank too much wine and laid down naked. His vulnerability was exposed. His shame was no longer hidden. His son Ham saw him and went to call on his brothers to come and see their father’s nakedness. When the other sons came, they covered their dad’s shame instead. The bible says that when Noah woke up, he cursed the seed of Ham. He cursed the fruit which happened to be the next generation that Ham produced – his grandchild. (See Genesis 9).
Just like Noah, has you dad or mum’s shame been exposed? What is your response or reaction to that?
Are you the type that never says anything good about your parents? If the whole world knows how they failed in their duties, of what benefit is that to you? Yes you will get the pity. But is God pleased? Have you truly forgiven?
I understand this is a not so popular topic to talk about but we need to obey the word of God totally. We can’t filter and accept the aspect of scripture that we love and ditch the ones we don’t. God wants us to play our part so He can play His.
I pray that any trigger this post may have had, that it will lead to healing, forgiveness, deliverance and reconciliation in Jesus name. Amen.