By learning to honor our parents, we learn to honor God
By Clay Perkins
Saturday, May 12, 2018
“Honor your father and your mother.” — Exodus 20:12 (The Bible, New International Version)
I love my parents. They were great. They were good parents. Not perfect, by any means, but very good. I am the son of a truck driver, who was the son of a share cropper. There was no wealth or nobility — according to the world’s standards — in my upbringing.
However, honor and nobility were in my home. Honor and nobility are found in the choices you make in life. The choices you make are telling your story.
It should catch everyone’s attention that the Bible uses the word “honor” when it comes to our relationship with our parents. We humans would have more likely chosen the word “love.” But the wisdom and simplicity of God said honor them.
The sad reality is that certain actions by some mothers and fathers make it difficult for their children to love them. Parents often make such significant negative choices that pain ripples through families for generation.
Since I have served in academia for years, I often enjoy this fictional email from a loving mom to her son at college …
“Just a few lines to let you know that I am still alive. I am writing this email very slowly, because I know you are struggling at college since you cannot read very fast.
“You won’t know the house when you come home … we have moved.
“You will be happy to know your dad has a very important new job. He has over 500 men and women under him. He is cutting grass at the cemetery.
“We might need a new washing machine in our new home. I put come clothes in, pushed the flush lever, and I have yet to see the clothes since.
“Good news, your sister had her baby. We do not know if it is a boy or a girl, so we don’t know yet if you are an uncle or an aunt.
“It rained twice last week: first for three days and then for four.
“Your loving mother.
“Oh, by the way, I was going to send money with this email, but it would not fit in the drive on the computer.”
Maybe your mother wasn’t this bad. Or maybe she was. Nevertheless, we are told to honor our fathers and mothers. Why?
The foundation of a good society is found in the home. The role of parents is paramount. If we choose to devalue the family, we will do so to the detriment of our society. Societies built upon honoring families thrive. We would make a significant mistake if we shifted the role of the family to the government. The government cannot care for our children in the same way a loving mother can.
The foundation of development of a child into adulthood is found in the home. Home is where children learn to honor those who serve them. Home is where they learn that someone else is in charge and that those in charge deserve our respect. If children never learn to obey, honor and respect those whom they see every day, how can they ever learn to obey, honor and respect our God whom we cannot see?
We honor mothers on a personal level. Moms are amazing. Their love and sacrifice for their families are unmatched. We also honor mothers on a national level since family is paramount to the future of our nation. So, let’s continue to honor our moms and honor the role of motherhood for the good of our society.
Dr. Clay Perkins is an adjunct professor at Mid-Atlantic Christian University. The opinions expressed in this column belong to the author and may not be those of MACU.