Honor your father and mother, which is the first commandment with promise: that it may be well with you and you may live long on the earth. Ephesians 6:2-3
See also: II Kings 4
One of the top Ten Commandments is to honor your mother. How you treat your parents really does matter to God; whether you are two or fifty-two. So much so that He said it will be well with you, and you will live long if you honor your parents—indicating if you don’t, it won’t go well with you, and you will shorten your life. It’s really a remarkable thing that there are several stern warnings for children who mistreat their parents by the words they use and the things that they do.
The question that I would ask every parent is, are you the kind of daughter you would like to raise? Are you the kind of son that you would like to raise? This begs the question: How do you honor your mother and father?
Here are seven quick things you can do to honor your mother.
The Big Seven
- Love your mother unconditionally. No matter what, the way that you honor your mother is to love her unconditionally. Love her when she’s young, and love her when she’s old. Love her when she has so much to give, and she keeps on giving, and giving, and giving to you the best years of her life. Everything that she has, she gives to you. Lays down her life for you. Love her when she has something to give, and when she has nothing left to give. You are commanded to love her unconditionally.
- Love her affectionately. There’s a bumper sticker that you see every once in a while on cars that says “Have you hugged your kid today?” I think we ought to make one and put it on teenagers’ doors, and say “Have you hugged your mom today?” It’s amazing how we can take for granted that our mother knows that we love her. Tell her that you love her.
- Love her by trying to understand her sympathetically. Women go through a lot of changes. Mothers go through a lot of changes. They wear so many hats. They cook, they clean, they judge, they make peace, they referee. They’re sounding boards. They’re accountants. They do so much, and we need to appreciate the great job that mothers do for us every single day of their life. And we need to understand them sympathetically. We need to have something in our heart that is so accommodating, and so sympathetic that it causes us to love with understanding. As they’re getting older, we are to be extremely sympathetic.
- Love her by being attentive. Pay attention. Husbands want undivided attention. Children also want undivided attention from that mother. When is it her turn? You have to determine in your heart that you will love her by being attentive to her.
- Love her cheerfully. Mothers are the greatest helpers in the world. They do things that money cannot pay people to do. They pick up things out of the bathroom floor that no one else would ever come near. They are amazing. Help her cheerfully.
- Love her by being grateful. Be reminded again and again by simply showing and expressing gratitude.
- Love her by reminding often that she is needed. It hurts a mom to feel she’s no longer needed. There’s nothing that the enemy would love more to tell a mom, as she moves into her golden years is –to whisper in her ear, you’re not necessary. Your life is over. Nobody has time for you. You’re just a hindrance. You’re just an inconvenience to everybody. That’s a lie. And we have to constantly remind our mothers how much they are needed constantly.
- Whether your mother is still alive today or not: Rate your relationship with your mother on a scale from 1-10, with ten being amazing. You may need to have two separate scores, one for when you were growing up, and the second score for today.
- What would it take to move that score closer to a ten, or what would it have taken for it to have been closer to a ten … then and now?
- Which one of the 7 points above do you need to work on to improve?
I know in my family, when there’s trouble in our home, I run to my mother. I pick up the phone, and I ask her to pray for me, pray for my family, and pray for my children. We should never underestimate the power of a praying mother. When she can’t work anymore, when she can’t give anymore, when she can’t serve anymore, even when she can’t do things for you anymore—she can still pray for you.
There’s power in the prayers of a godly mother.