Relationship with Your Parents

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November 5 was our meeting about our relationship with our parents.  Many young people today think that authority is a bad and undesirable thing, and so they often rebel against the authorities God has placed in their lives. They fail to understand that as the Author of the universe, He has all authority over it and He delegates authority to human people to accomplish His purposes (Rom. 13:1-5). As young people, the primary authority God has placed over us is our parents. When we submit to their God-given authority, we are submitting to God (Eph. 6:1).  When we disobey our parents authority, we are disobeying God.  Believe it or not, being under authority has many benefits including provision, training, correction, and protection.

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God has given us the protection of our parents.  He uses their authority that He has set in place in our lives to bring blessing and to be a protection over us.  Just like an umbrella protects us from getting wet from the rain, the authority of our parents protects us from the dangers of the world… as long as we stay under their authority.  When we chose to obey our parents, we are choosing to be under the protection that God has set in place.  When we disobey and resist authority we move out from under the protection that God has given us opening ourselves up to the dangers of the enemy.

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It is so important that we have a good relationship with our parents.  When we respect them and their authority, there are many blessings that follow.  Honoring our parents and being submissive is often hard, yet it is the key to a close relationship with our parents.  When your parents ask you to do something that you don’t like, ask the Lord to give you a submissive attitude.  When we have an attitude of true submission, obedient actions will follow naturally and we will being honoring our parents and the Lord.

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As we seek to be strong for the Lord and use the years of our youth for Him, we need to choose to honor the authority of our parents and seek to develop a close relationship with them.  As we honor our parents, others will notice and we will be a shining testimony to them.  Let’s each commit to honoring our parents and developing a close relationship with them for the glory of God.  Ask the Lord to help you gain a submissive attitude and to provide you with opportunities to build your relationship with your parents.

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For our activity time, the girls enjoyed making cards for their parents and writing notes of gratefulness to them.

Practical Assignment:  Write down three specific ways that you can intentionally honor your parents this coming week and do those things before the next meeting!

Disrespect & Honoring Our Parents

P1300296Since we had to cancel a meeting in December due to bad weather, we combined two lessons in one to finish up Set 5 of the Bright Lights curriculum on January 30.  The topics were very closely related and we had a lot to talk about as we looked at the lessons “Disrespect” and “Honoring Our Parents”.

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We have talked about honoring parents in previous Bright Lights lessons, but this is an area that most of us struggle with every day.  It’s an area that Satan tries so hard to destroy in our lives, because our relationship with our parents should be a picture of our relationship with our Heavenly Father.   As young people, Satan wants us to make foolish choices that ruin our lives rather than listening to our parents’ wisdom and counsel.  So this is such an important issue in the life of a young lady who wants to serve the Lord and be a bright light for Him.

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We talked about the importance of wanting a good relationship with our parents, choosing to stay under their authority and protection, maintaining a clear conscience with them, and not keeping secrets from them.  It takes humility to do these things, especially since we know that our parents aren’t perfect.  We have the challenging example of Jesus in this area – He was perfect, yet He choose to be subject to His earthly, imperfect parents (Luke 2:51).

Disrespect is opposite of honor, and is actually a sign of rebellion, an outward evidence of an inner attitude.  Disrespect can be very subtle and so it seem like a very small thing, but the Bible makes it clear just how serious it is (2 Kings 2:23-24; Prov. 20:20; Ex. 21:15, 17; Prov. 30:17).   Attitude is key – if you have the right attitude there will be no disrespect.  If you have a wrong attitude it will be almost impossible to avoid disrespect.  Having a grateful attitude – remembering all that our parents have done and continue to do and sacrifice for us – makes it a whole lot easier to show them honor.  Let’s not just eliminate disrespect from our lives, but replace it with gratefulness and honor to our parents.  Young people who honor and respect their parents will stand out as bright lights in today’s world.

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Disrespect is an outward sign of an inward problem.  Many young ladies allow anger, wrong thoughts, and bitterness grow in their hearts toward their parents and it reveals itself in the form of disrespect. Bitterness clouds our thinking, cripples our ability to respond with humility, and prevents us from showing true honor as God commands us.  Bitterness may start small and seem harmless, but it grows rapidly and becomes a huge danger in our lives.  It’s very difficult to honor and respect someone who has wronged you, or when you don’t agree with them, or think they dealt with a situation wrongly, yet God calls us to forgive just as He has forgiven us (Eph. 4:31-32), and to respect our parents and their authority.

P1300254Honoring our parents can be very difficult a lot of times, but the rewards far outweigh the struggles.  God promises blessings for us as we purpose to honor our parents in everything and respond to them in a godly way.  Ultimately, we are not just honoring our parents – we are honoring the Lord!

After the lesson, we split up into small groups for discussion on how we struggle with being respectful to our parents, and practical ways to honor them in everyday life.

We did skits for our activity (and everyone cheered when I announced that).  Each group was given a scenario and needed to come up with one in which they were disrespectful, and one in which they honored their parents.  Here’s some pictures from the skits:

Scenario: You’ve had a rough day and are trying to finish your “To Do” list before supper time when your mom unexpectedly asks you to make supper because she is so busy…

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Mom is busy to the point of frustration, but Emma and Lily are no help
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Madison and Autumn cheerfully make supper

Scenario – Your friend recommends a movie to you, but your parents don’t want you to watch it.  All your friends have seen it and say it’s a good movie…

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Maria’s friends recommend the movie to her
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Maria’s mom is shocked by what movie her friends recommended

Scenario – You are shopping with your mom and find some a cute clothes.  However, once you try them on, your mom doesn’t think they’re appropriate, although you think they’re perfectly fine…

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The girls are excited to be shopping for clothes
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Mom doesn’t think that Deborah’s new headgear is appropriate for the occasion

Scenario – Your mom tells you that she thinks that you are spending too much time on the internet…

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Joy doesn’t listen to her mom about spending time on the internet
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Calli heeds her mom’s concerns about her time on the internet

We ended our time together with tea and snacks provided by Rose, Becky, and the N ladies. It was wonderful to fellowship with so many of you who haven’t been able to make it out for the past couple of meetings!

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I want to finish this post with a quick reminder about the Creation/Evolution debate tomorrow between Bill Nye the Science Guy and Ken Ham of Answers in Genesis.  You can watch the live stream tomorrow evening – find our more at DebateLive.org.

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Developing a Close Relationship With Your Parents

We had our second Bright Lights meeting on January 26.  The Lord brought 16 girls to this meeting about “Developing a Close Relationship With Your Parents.”  We remembered to take pictures for the blog post this time!

During our lesson time we talked about how God is the Author of the universe and therefore He has all authority over it.  He delegates authority to human beings, such as our parents, to accomplish His purposes.  Instead of being like the teenagers of our day who think that authority is a bad and undesirable thing, it is important to recognize that authority is a good thing and honor those that the Lord has put in authority over us… especially the authority of our parents.

I used a picture of an umbrella to illustrate our parents’ authority.  Just like an umbrella protects us from the rain, staying under our parents’ authority protects us from the dangers of this world… as long as we stay under their authority.  When we choose to obey our parents, we are choosing to be under the protection that God has set in place.  When we disobey and resist authority, we move out from under the “umbrella” of protection and open ourselves up to the dangers of the enemy.  Our parents’ authority not only offers us protection, but also the blessings of provision, training, and correction.

The lesson time

We learned that our parents want to have a good relationship with us (“My son, give me thine heart…” Prov. 23:26) and came up with a list of different ways that we can work toward building a good relationship with them.  Some of the things on our list were to:

  • Express thankfulness
  • Share your life with them
  • Do not keep secrets from them/ trust them
  • Maintain a clear conscience with them
  • Look for ways to serve them
  • Avoid doing things that dishonor them
  • Encourage them

We also talked about the difference between obedience (refers to our action) and submission (refers to our attitude).  We can outwardly be doing what our parents have asked us to do, yet if we have a bad attitude we are not truly being submissive.  True submission is the key to having a close relationship with our parents.

As we seek to be strong for the Lord and use the years of our youth for Him, we need to choose to honor the authority of our parents and seek to develop a close relationship with them.  When we obey  and honor our parents, we are obeying and honoring God.  How we respond to the authority of our parents now is how we will respond to other authorities in our lives and ultimately to God.  We should ask the Lord to give us a submissive attitude and to provide opportunities to build our relationship with our parents.  As we honor our parents, others will notice and we will be a shining testimony to them… a bright light for Jesus!

Our activity was to make cards in which to write notes of gratefulness to our parents to thank them for their love, provision, training, correction, and protection. We used tissue paper squares to make flowers and designs on the card.  Everyone was very creative in making her own unique card!

Making cards for our parents

We closed with a lovely time of fellowship over tea and snacks.  Thanks to the Mindy, Lily, and Mrs. M. for providing our snacks this week!  We enjoyed mini eclairs, shortbread squares, and double chocolate cookies along with our mint and raspberry teas!