Honoring our Parents

I’ve been spending the weekends mostly at my parents’ home in Pampanga lately and since I’m on a relaxed mood (I took a leave of absence from work.), I had all the time to lounge and just do what pleases me, but I found myself doing a massive general cleaning for days. I want a spacious home. It suffocates me when I see clutter. It’s an eye sore. My motto is if a certain thing wasn’t used for a period of time, it has to be given away. Other people may put it to a better use, and it could be a blessing to them too. However, my mom isn’t like that. She likes to keep things. She told me once they were raised that way---maging masinop. So even if an appliance isn’t working anymore, she’ll still keep it and say, “I’ll have this fixed.”/ “Pwede pa to.”/ “Huwag natin itapon.” Yada, yada, yada..Sometimes when I throw MY OWN THINGS (yes, I have to emphasize that), she’ll double check the black trash bags and see if she could recycle some. Years ago, I piled some old underwear, placed them in a plastic bag and ready for disposal. She collected them again from the trash bag and placed the plastic bag inside her closet. She said she’ll convert them to rags. Gaaah! I was furious! Are your moms like my mom too? But of course, it’s her home. She’s the queen, so I still consult her. Hmmm, okay, there’s a bit of lie there. I don’t consult her most of the time, because I usually raid the house when she’s not around.

But even if my mom and I have different views, we both like to make the house beautiful. I’m minimalist, she’s histrionic. I want their house to be spacious because my parents are getting older and they don’t have any helper. I thought it would be much easier for them to maintain the house that way. Our house is a cute bungalow, but it seems huge when we’re not around. It’s also flood-prone, so just in case the calamity strikes again, it will be easier to clean up (but I’m praying every now and then it won’t happen again). My intention is good, but I realized, it’s not my house. It’s my parents’. They have their rules, they have their wants and as long as I stay in their house, they have authority over me (even if I’m married already) and I have to respect that. It’s one way of obeying and honoring them. Maybe when I have my own house, then that’s the time I could make and impose my own rules, but never under their roof. So if my mom wants to keep all her ‘baconized undies’, so be it. I could suggest, but never impose.

 I know sometimes it’s hard to obey our parents, but as children, we have to do it in ALL circumstances. Ouch! I actually feel convicted while typing this as I thought of the moments I disobeyed my parents ever since I could remember. Not all of us are parents, but all of us are children. Honoring our parents is giving value to them-even when they wrong us. It’s actually written in the Bible—Honor your parents. And it’s the only command with a promise, that if we honor our parents, we’ll receive a long life on earth (Exodus 20: 12). Beautiful, isn’t it? Even Jesus Christ, the only perfect and sinless man submitted himself to his earthly parents (Luke 2:51 – Then he went down to Nazareth with them and was obedient to them. But his mother treasured all these things in her heart.), and to his heavenly father (Matthew 26:39 – Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.”)

I believe, honoring our parents is the first basic lesson we have to learn and keep in our hearts. Everything starts at home (that’s why the enemy tries so hard to destroy the family). When children know how to honor their parents, they will also respect the authorities, their employers, their teachers, their friends, their spouse, their children. But best of all, we glorify God, because it pleases him so much when we honor the stewards of our lives.

Ethel

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