Are there times you honestly don’t know what to do with your parents? Are they stubborn and set in their ways? Will they not compromise or acquiesce to your requests? Maybe your parents, or one of them is no longer with you? Are there times you wish you could hear their confident voice or feel the comfort of their arms around you? Are there ways you are showing honor to your parents? Do you honor them as the Bible instructs us to do so?
I encourage you today, as I am doing to thank God for the parents you have had that gave you life. Your mother chose life for you, instead of terminating her pregnancy. You were nourished and grew inside her womb until it was time for you to emerge and embark upon this incredible journey of life. When you took your first breath, God smiled and said, “Yes, exactly what I planned!” Your conception may not have been planned by your parents, maybe it was, but no matter how or the circumstances surrounding it, it happened and it happened for a reason! No accident, No coincident!
Everything went according to Gods divine plan and the two people present at the time of the miracle of your life, were magnificently used by God for your creation. You are not a mistake, you are not an accident, you are not a “failed birth control mishap”, and you are not an unplanned pregnancy! Whatever negative, hateful remark and connotation used to describe your being, your existence up until now is wrong.
The Good News! God planned you, God designed you, God wanted you, and God lined up everything biologically with your parents to produce you with your specific DNA. You are unique, one of a kind, special, called, desired and loved by God so much! You are His Masterpiece!
It may not have been a perfect, loving setting or marriage when you were conceived, but God knew, God had a plan for you and for your life. So because your Mom chose life for you, you survived thus far, May we honor our parents for who they are and for being the instrument, the tool God used to bring us to life here on our Earthly journey. May we embrace them for who they are their past, their humanity, their mistakes, their imperfections and be thankful for their choosing life for us?
I recently read a quote from Dennis Rainey and I feel it is appropriate to share now.
“Honoring your parents is an attitude accompanied by actions that say to your parents:
You are worthy. You have value. You are the people God’s sovereignty placed in my life. You may have failed me, hurt me and disappointed me at times, but I am taking off my judicial robe and releasing you from the courtroom of my mind. I choose to look at you with eyes of compassion as you are~~~ as people with needs, concerns, pain and scars of your own.”
If we would allow ourselves to look at our parents, whether they are still alive or not, but to see them in this respect, I believe healing, restoration and peace would come to us. May we forgive our parents for not being perfect and for not being ALL that we thought we needed and required and desired.
I know as a parent myself, I honestly try to do what is best and right by and for my children. I believe most of us would lay our own lives down for our children; compromising, sacrificing and putting our own wishes and desires on hold for them. We try to provide for them, meet their needs and be there for them, loving them unconditionally and supporting them. After all that we do for our kids, it saddens me to hear stories of how in their eyes, we (collectively as parents) have failed them and they will never do what we did or say what we said, they are going to be “better” parents than we were. They are angry because we did not allow them to do this or that or made them go here or there and made their lives miserable, intolerable with all the boundaries and restrictions and curfews. Maybe we said something that hurt them or did something that embarrassed them, whatever it was, they always recall the worst we did and didn’t do, never noticing ALL the “good” we did along the way for them.
So often, I hear young teenagers complain of how stupid their parents are and how they just don’t understand them and how they can’t wait until they are old enough to be free from the prison they live in, their parent’s home. This kind of talk is normal; after all, if your child doesn’t say, “I hate you and I can’t wait to get away from you”, then you really haven’t been an A+ parent. You can’t be their friend all the time. They have plenty of friends; you have to parent and parenting means saying NO sometimes! For me, at this stage of relationship with my children, I hear my girls say that their Dad and I really aren’t that dumb anymore, that we may have some good advice now and then, that we really may have loved them all along and wanted what was best for them and tried our best to keep them safe. I love to hear them say, “Mom, you really do know what you are talking about!” and “Mom and Dad, you didn’t do such a horrible job raising me!”
But, as is true for my own observation of what my parents did “right” in parenting me, they instilled in me an unshakable faith in God and no matter what happens or doesn’t happen in my life, I always pray first. I trust God completely and I know without a doubt that God loves me and knows what is best for me and will withhold that which I cannot handle and give to me that which I can handle. I also know that my parents love me and though I was an unplanned pregnancy, I was loved and wanted and they did their very best for me. They made decisions and choices based upon their own experiences and parenting skills they collected along the way. They sure were not perfect, but I was loved and they did a good enough job!
Parenting is not a perfect, precise profession, there are no classes or certificates or degrees for us. We are all learning, practicing as we travel this path, gathering from our own parents the good they did and discarding what we didn’t like and applying it to our own style of parenting. It never fails, I find myself saying the same things my Mom or Dad said to me that I swore I would never say to my kids. I guess it wasn’t that wrong after all, because I am doing it!
Go visit your parents today, call them, reach out to them if you are able to, if they are still alive, if not, maybe you can love on someone else’s parents if yours are not around. It is never too late; you can rewrite the story of your birth in your mind and make it a good, happy one if you choose! Thank them for giving you life. Try envisioning them as brand new parents with you in their arms, smiling, beaming with proud anticipation of what this tiny human will become and yet terrified and frightened at the incredible task set before them in raising a piece of heaven from God, this eternal soul. Nothing is perfect in this imperfect world, but God uses imperfect people to accomplish His perfect plan. God loves you and you were born for a reason, may you find His purpose, His passion and plan for your life.
Tonya F. Henshaw
March 29, 2013