I do not like to be told what to do. A lot of the time, I think I know best. Unfortunately, everyone in my house thinks that they know best, which at times can create a little friction. Thank goodness God has given us a couple of guidelines to live by as a family unit- a hierarchy- that calls us each to submit to a certain authority. We are all called to be obedient to someone.
Children are called to be obedient to us as parents. We are the authority in our homes. (Sometimes it may not seem like that as a stubborn three year old stares you down in utter defiance. Believe me, I have been there. Just remember that you are bigger than they are!)
Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “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.” (Ephesians 6:1-3)
We want our children to be heed our instruction because we know better. We see the end result at the beginning and therefore know which decision leads to the best outcome. For example, I know that even though my son wants to stay up until midnight, that will NOT lead to a happy child come six o’clock the next morning. And I know that even though he wants to blow off his homework to play outside, that kind of choice will not benefit him in the end. Or when he wants candy for dinner, that his body will not feel great without the nutrients it needs.
In our house, these rules are not up for discussion or negotiation. They do not change based on what the other kids are doing or on what my son thinks they ought to be. And if he does not obey, there are consequences.
My son may not understand the choices that we make or rules that we establish. Many times, he thinks that we are just being mean. But we make those rules for his best interest. We make those guidelines so that the end result is a good one. We set certain standards because we LOVE him.
In much the same way and for the same reasons, we are called to be obedient to God and the rules that He has established. The Father wants the best for us and He calls us to trust that He knows better.
We have truly been adopted into God’s family! He has CHOSEN us to be His children!
The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. (Romans 8:15-16)
How awesome it is that we serve a God, a Father, that knows the end and can direct us down the best path.
I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my loving eye on you.. (Psalm 32:8)
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;in all your ways submit to him,and he will make your paths straight.. (Proverbs 3:5-6)
So, I may not understand why He always wants me to forgive those who have hurt me or why I should pray for my enemies. I may not understand why I am called to submit to my husband. I may not see the reason behind dying to self and putting me last. But He does. And He has called me to be obedient. He sees the end result.
We must set the example of obedience for our kids. We must show our children just how great it is to serve a God that loves us so much that His rules and guidance lead us to our best ending.