I’m Not Asking Your Permission1
Café Menu for Thursday, May 28, 2015
Today’s Special is: Honoring Your Parents Even When It’s Hard!
Carefully prepared just for you by your friend, Tara Gilpin
Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother” (this is the first command with a promise) “that it may go well with you and that you may live long in the land."
Ephesians 6:1-3 ESV
My mother and father constantly quoted this Scripture to me and my sisters when we were growing up. Our father was in the ministry so it seemed that obeying him was even more important for us because at times we felt that we were “on display.”
I remember as a child when we would watch the news and see Willard Scott talk about the 100 year old birthdays my Dad would say, “I bet they obeyed their parents when they were small – it’s the only command with a promise!” This was delivered to us with a knowing look – as if we disobeyed we were taking years off of our lives.
I had a great childhood, you could say it was idyllic, and I always tried to be a compliant child. If I did something wrong, the guilt would eat me so badly that I would usually tell on myself because I couldn’t stand it. However, when I was in college I clearly felt the Lord calling me to go to the mission field, and so I called my parents and told them of my decision.
My mother said,
Are you sure? Is this really what God is saying to you? Do you truly HAVE to go to another country so far away?
The compliant child within me wanted to say,
No Mom, in fact, I think I’ll buy the house right next to yours!
However, the Lord confirmed this call within me so clearly that I heard myself say,
I’m not asking your permission, I’m telling you what the Lord has called me to do!
I went to the mission field and lived for two years away from the country of my birth. My parents, who always taught us to obey the Lord first and foremost allowed me to go. There were many tears on both sides, and over the two years there were many more tears. They came to visit me once and my call was confirmed within their hearts as well, and later on I returned to the mission field for another five years.
The Lord knew our hearts and He gave us the grace to be away from each other for years at a time. I love my family so much, and I am thankful that I was obedient to the Lord in my decision to serve Him overseas.
The Lord teaches us to honor our parents and to follow Him in obedience as well. He is so faithful and gives us the grace that we need in every situation whether we serve Him in our home, in our neighborhood, or in a foreign country.
Dear Heavenly Father,
Sometimes we feel that we have to choose between what honors You and what honors our parents. Give us the wisdom to know how to honor our parents even in difficult situations. Thank You that Your faithfulness is new every morning, and for Your grace at the exact moment when it is needed. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
© 2015 by Tara Gilpin. All rights reserved.