Bible Reading: Luke 4:33-44
Much of our happiness and success in life is a direct result of how we relate to other people. You will do your children (and yourself) a world of good if you will teach them to respect other people. That respect begins at home…with you. Of course, it makes it a lot easier for children to respect their parents…if they are worthy of respect. While we should teach our children about respect by the things that we tell them…they will learn that lesson much easier and with much more appreciation if we teach them through our own actions and behavior. Do your children see you showing respect to others by the things that you do, and say?
- How about when you feel that you were mistreated?
- How about when you hear some juicy gossip?
- How about when someone else fails?
- How do you treat someone who is not as successful, or who does not have as good a job, or who does not have as much money?
- How do you treat someone who has not earned your respect?
What are you teaching your children about respect…through your life?
Thoughts about God for My Grandkids:
I want to live a long, healthy, happy, and productive life. That sounds pretty good, doesn’t it? I’ll bet that you do, too. What can we do to help make that happen? Well, don’t get caught in a natural disaster, and remember to pull the parachute cord. That’s pretty sound advice. But beside that, what else can we do? People have several suggestions. For instance:
Two supercentenarians (people aged 110 and older) said:
- take morning walks and eat chocolate (I’m liking this advice)
- eat raw eggs and don’t get married (I’m not liking this advice).
A medical site on the internet said: exercise, diet, don’t smoke, and drink alcohol moderately (I’m doing those).
A psychologist said there are several important attitudes: be dependable, be hard-working, be persistent, and be well-organized (I think I’ve got those covered).
Wow, I’ve got a chance at living to be ancient! At least if those things actually make a difference. But there is another source of information about life that I put a lot more trust in…the Bible.
After Jesus began His public ministry He would often stay in the home of Peter (also called Simon). Peter was a fisherman and his home was located along the shore of the Sea of Galilee. One day, Jesus went to Peter’s home. When He got there they told Him that Peter’s mother-in-law (Mrs. Peter’s mother) was sick. They asked Him to help her. Jesus went into the room where she was and healed her.
Now, what I want you to notice is that they showed respect for Peter’s mother-in-law. They didn’t tell her to quit whining because she wasn’t that sick, they didn’t just ignore her, they didn’t tell her to stay in bed and not get them sick. No. What did they do? They brought Jesus to her so that He could help her. Respect. Peter took care of his mother-in-law.
How does this have anything to do with living long? Peter was doing what the Bible told him to do. In the Old Testament, which was the only part of the Bible that had been written at the time when Jesus lived, we find the 10 Commandments. Remember, God gave them to Moses and said that His people were to obey them. And guess what one of them says…
Honor your father and mother, as the Lord your God commanded you. Then you will live a long, full life in the land the Lord your God is giving you. (Deuteronomy 5:16, NLT)
The word “honor” means to respect, to treat someone with admiration and value. And notice what it says will happen when you respect your parents….”you will live a long, full life”. In the New Testament, the Apostle Paul says that it is the Commandment that has a promise if we keep it (Ephesians 6:1-3). Now, that’s what I’m talking about. I think there are three reasons why that will happen.
- When we keep God’s commandments we are respecting God and when we do that He blesses us.
- When we respect our parents it teaches us to respect other people, as well. That is an important lesson that we must learn if we are going to have happy relationships with other people.
- When we don’t respect other people…life can be very lonely and unhappy. There can be very negative results when we mistreat other people.
So, do you want to live a long, healthy, happy, and productive life? Well, the way life turns out has a lot to do with how life starts out. Respect your parents now…and as long as they are alive. By being a blessing…you will receive a blessing. Oh, and by the way…don’t forget about Granddad and Grandma, either!
Love you more than bunches and bunches,