What To Do When Your Parents Say “No” (Ephesians 6:1 – 3)

What To Do When Your Parents Say “No” (Ephesians 6:1 – 3). Bible Lesson. Teen Bible Lesson.

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 be well with you, and that you may live long on the earth.” – Ephesians 6:1 – 3 (New American Standard Bible)

Introductory Questions:

1. How do “honor” and “obey” differ in meaning?

2. What does it mean to obey your parents “in the Lord”?

3. How long should a person keep honoring his or her parents? How does this question apply to a child? A teen? A young married person? A middle-aged person?

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Parents Are People Too

As a Christian and as a son or daughter, you’re expected to honor your father and mother. But how can you when they just don’t seem to understand?

1. Find out what works and what doesn’t work. Arguing and throwing a temper tantrum is a poor way to build a trusting relationship with your parents. You might accomplish a short-term goal if they give in. Yet the Bible commands you to honor your parents. Parents will usually treat you with respect if you earn it.

2. Many kids secretly rebel against their parents’ wishes. Planning to do behind their backs what your parents have already objected to is deceitful. You wouldn’t trust someone who talked about you behind your back, but in essence, this is what you expect your parents to do if you secretly rebel.

3. Unconditional acceptance of parental standards might seem like the most obvious way to “honor” your parents, but it may not be. Parents are people. They make mistakes. Learning from mistakes helps everyone grow spiritually. Your parents might never learn to trust you if they never allow you to venture out on your own. So don’t be afraid to occasionally ask them to reconsider a decision.

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Timing Is Everything

1. Choosing a time when your parents have a minute to discuss the matter – not when they’re stressed out or not after a rough day. Be considerate of their needs as well as your own.

2. When you’re ready to talk, try not to put them on the defensive. Let them know you respect their judgment, but you feel more discussion might be in order.

3. Then present your facts. Make sure you’re honest and direct with your parents. Give them a chance to explain their concerns with you. This builds trust and respect between you and your parents.

4. Really listen. You might discover your parents were justified in their decision. They could surprise you with how well they understand your situation. Or they might reveal an incident from their past that would help you understand their reactions.

5. Discuss the problem honestly and intelligently. Allow your parents to come to a final conclusion. Whatever the decision, stick to it. Otherwise, your parents may not trust you the next time.

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Related Articles (links) on this blog:

Instructions for Christian Fathers (parents)

Family Expectations: Case Studies for Young People (3 part series)

Quick List: Six Principles for Interpersonal Communication

It’s Your Decision: Anger Prevention and Conflict Resolution

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