The Ten Commandments: Number Five

3rd – 4th September

Weekend Edition

The blessings of parents

Honour your father and mother. The you will live a long, full life in the land the Lord your God is giving you.”

Exodus 20:12

Honour you father and mother

For some, commandment number five makes hard reading. Perhaps your parents have been abusive, exasperating or even not around in your life. Maybe you ask yourself the question ‘how can I honour my parents when…..’. Well firstly, there is hope. If you are a child of God, then know that your heavenly Father only has good for you, only has plans to prosper you and not to harm you (Jeremiah 29:11). The Psalmist also says of God, that He is the Father to the fatherless (Psalm 68:5). He is a good Father and He loves us, His children unconditionally. If you have had a bad or painful experience with your earthly parents, know that your Heavenly Father, is going to restore your hurts and pains. He only has good for you and will lovingly and gently restore and heal you.

Parenting is a hard job. The responsibility to bring someone into this world, raise them, care for them, teach them moral values, provide for them, give them an education, food on their table and a roof over their head, is an enormous task. It is for this reason that God saw it fit to include ‘honouring your parents’ in the guidelines for healthy and spiritual living. Honouring your parents, although it may be hard to do sometimes, is a healthy and spiritual discipline. Paul, in Ephesians 6:1 also alludes to this and says, “Children, obey your parents because you belong to the Lord, for this is the right thing to do.” In addition, this is the only commandment with a promise of blessing attached to it. Even Jesus, hanging on the cross, made sure that when He had died, His mother would be taken care of. Moreover, it is God that gives us the grace to honour our parents, accept them for who they are (faults and all), and love them with the same love that God loves us with.

There is a huge blessing in honouring our parents. As you work out how this looks in your own life, may you find God’s strength, healing, grace and empowerment to honour them as part of your daily spiritual disciplines.