We all have parents. Some of us are still able to honor them. Some of us are parents and know what it feels like to be honored. The reminder here is a good one. This is the first commandment with a promise. It wasn’t just an expectation from God, there was a reward attached. Do this and get that. When we honor our parents, we are promised a long life, and that things will go well for us.
I don’t know about you, but when I was younger, I had a hard time honoring my parents. I was a bit of a rebel child. I could say the same for my own children. Why is it that the ones we love most sometimes take the brunt of our attacks and abuse? If only we could be more mindful of God’s command. He is just waiting to fulfill his promise.
The next section in today’s reading deals with slaves and masters. In our day and age, you might want to think of this more as the employee/employer relationship. Yes, there are areas of the world where the master/slave hierarchy still exists. Again, respect and honor play a big role in how we are being called to act. Have you ever applied this to your work situation? How about doing chores around the house?
I don’t know about you, but I’m not necessarily a fan of doing housework. I like a clean house, but the time to keep it clean is a commodity I prefer to spend in other ways. However, that all changes when I imagine I’m cleaning for Jesus. Verse 7 says, “Work with enthusiasm, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people.”
I have been known to sing praise songs while sweeping, mopping, or folding laundry. It is much more enjoyable and certainly a lot easier to be enthusiastic when doing chores in this manner. Have you ever tried doing chores as if you were doing them for God? If not, you should definitely try it!
The Lord loves to reward us for our good deeds. Likewise, as parents (or grandparents) it is delightful to be able to reward our children for good behavior. Just today, my grandson asked for something. I told him what behavior I expected first. He did it, and then in an adorable fashion reminded me of my promise. My heart melted, and he got his reward. We need to melt God’s heart when we act to please him!
The final thought here covers situations when we are in charge. Maybe we are the boss or the leader in charge of a project. We are not to wield our power over our employees, helpers, or teammates. Instead, we are to show them respect and honor. We need to remember we all share the same Father in heaven. Our Father loves us all the same. When we keep this truth in mind, it’s easier to love each other. Sometimes we may need to ask God for a little help in loving those who are not our “favorites.”
Let’s pray. Lord, I thank you for loving me despite my flaws. Forgive me when I fail to see the good in others and love them as you do. May all I say and do be done for you and your glory. May others stand amazed at my grateful, enthusiastic heart. Use me to make a difference in the world today. In Jesus’ name. Amen.