How you treat your mother really does matter to God. He commands us to honor our parents and promises us that our lives will go well if we do … or suffer consequences if we don’t. The million-dollar question is: How can we make sure we are following His commandment?
Ephesians 6:2-3 (NIV) says, “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise— so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”
In Deuteronomy 5:16 (NIV) it says, “Honor your father and your mother, as the Lord your God has commanded you, so that you may live long and that it may go well with you in the land the Lord your God is giving you.”
How to honor your mother in 7 easy steps
Love your mother unconditionally. Although she is right 99% of the time, remember that she is human. She will make mistakes. Just love her anyway.
- Hug her affectionately. Everyone needs love. Love her even when she’s not lovable. How many times has she loved on you when you weren’t exactly lovable yourself?
- Try to be understanding. Again, she’s only human. She is someone or something else to a lot of other people during the course of her week: a wife, a worker at a job, a friend, a daughter, or a sister. She isn’t JUST your your mother 24/7. Is there something happening at her work, with her friends, in another relationship, with her health, that she might need help with or prayer for? Maybe something in her past has happened that you don’t know about. Be there for her.
- Listen to her attentively. Sometimes people just need someone who loves them and listens to them. When’s the last time you just sat down and listened to what she had to say … about anything?
- Help her cheerfully. How shocked would your mom be if you did the grocery shopping, or cleaned the house, or did any chores this week without being asked? What could you do this week that would give her a break so that she could enjoy some time off from the pressures of her daily life?
- Be grateful. When is the last time you thanked her for her for anything? You would be amazed how encouraging a thank you is … for dinner, for giving you a ride, for your laundry, for anything. Just give her a hug and say THANK YOU MOM.
- Remind her that she is needed. Do you have time to speak a word today or to pick up the phone and call your mom and ask her a question or seek her advice? Just letting her know she is still an important part of your life is honoring her and keeping God’s commandment.
Perhaps you did not grow up in a home where your mother nurturing and kind. I have a word for you as well. You can fulfill God’s commandment by forgiving your mother and praying for her. Luke 6:28 says to “bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.” God is a god of restoration and of hope, and you can honor your mother by making sure that you love and honor her.
- Rate your relationship with your mother on a scale from 1-10 (10 being best):
- What would it take for that score to move closer to a 10? What’s missing or not so good?
- What do YOU need to do to move that score closer to a 10?