Most all parents have thought, “Why don’t my kids appreciate all the things I do for them? They expect their lives to run smoothly, and when things go well, they think it happens by osmosis!”
This is true to a large degree. It has been said by the experts that kids take what they had as children and that is how they define “normal” throughout their lives. That is not the greatest news for future adults who have drug addicts or abusers or just plain lazy parents. But what about kids whose parents provide well, work hard, and live good, clean Christian lives? They also perceive this as “normal.”
The good news in that is they may push extra hard to provide this “normalcy” for the next generation. The bad news is they may feel that hard-working, responsible parents are like warm breezes on a sunny day or a pretty snowfall on a winter’s night. They just happen.
When Mother’s Day comes around, as it will soon, asking kids to be thankful for mom can be like asking them to be thankful for breathing and walking.
One mom, a devoted Christian since childhood, asked her 18 year old son “Tell me one thing about me that you are thankful for?” Since his birth she had faithfully washed his clothes, cleaned his room along with the rest of the house, cooked his meals at least 5 times a week, and driven him to church youth events, ball games, and all the other things he was involved in. He looked at her for a moment and said, “Well, you make a mean stromboli!” She then wonders with great anxiety, “He is almost an adult and that is what he’s going to remember me for… my great stromboli?”
The fifth commandment says, “Honor your father and mother.” (Exodus 20:12). Some great Christian parents have wondered why the Commandment does not say “honor your children,” as we seem to spend much of our days doing just that. The reason probably has to do with our nature! IT IS WITHIN A PARENT TO CHRONICALLY LOVE AND THINK ABOUT AND HELP THEIR CHILDREN; the reciprocate needs to be the Command, or it might not be fulfilled.
As parents, we need to be extremely giving, but at the same time we need to have extreme expectations. Children need to be taught lessons in both love and respect. You see, what children attribute to their parents is what they will attribute to Christ as well. Faith begins at home.
My prayer for parents is that they will use these days as a springboard to raise kids that will grow up and HONOR and RESPECT them, as well as others, and more importantly… GOD.