Obey AND Honor
I was sixteen, and I wanted nothing more than a pick-up truck of my very own. Everywhere my parents and I went, I would point out everything with four wheels and a tailgate. As the months passed, I found myself feeling a little bitter when I saw other guys at school driving up in their brand new Z-71’s. My parents may not even remember now, but on a few occasions I lashed out at them because of my selfishness. I thought they were punishing me, so I did not honor them the way that I should have. What lesson can we learn from this? For one, thanks, Mom and Dad, for teaching me to appreciate things and to work for what I have. Also, thanks for the two-tone (white in front/red in back) 1970 Chevy C10 that I truly loved and enjoyed during my last couple of years of high school. But in a broader sense, let’s focus on the first four verses of Ephesians 6.
“Children obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right. Honor thy father and mother;” (v 1-2). Obey and honor your parents. Young people, you are technically “obeying” your parents when they tell you to clean your room and you do so while you stomp around, slinging objects into the closet, and mumbling snidely under your breath. You are obeying, but you are not honoring them! I didn’t honor my parents when I lashed out at them during my youth. If you want your parents to respect and reward you, show them the honor that God demands of you. Then, God will reward you both here and hereafter. (v 3).
“And, ye fathers. Provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord” (v 4). Of course, parents should not try to anger their children, but discipline them with love. They must avoid discipline without love, which provokes…and they must avoid “love” without discipline, which actually shows a lack of love. So often, children view what their parents do as anger provoking, when it is merely giving them what they need instead of what they want. Children, obey and honor your parents, and observe how the Lord will bless you.