From gratitude, we move gradually move to loving what is good and honorable. I don’t believe we have to love what isn’t lovable. We don’t have to honor what isn’t honorable. Seek God on what He sees as honorable and lovable. Ask God to give us His love for the person. I find He doesn’t love any of people’s bad behavior. But He knows how to love beyond the bad behavior part. He may show us things about our parents we never knew. Sometimes when he shows us what broke in them, it brings compassion. Compassion helps fuel the journey of honoring.
The Good news about this commandment is that it comes with a promise. “Honor your father and your mother, as the Lord your God commanded you; that your days may be long, and that it may go well with you…” Deuteronomy 5;16. During difficult circumstances that seem like they will never end, it may not seem like much of a promise. Yet, the promise talks about “living long in the land the Lord Your God is giving you.” It indicates a promised land which is something all the people wanted. It reads like a recipe for a long and good life. God keeps the promises He makes. So let’s figure out how to honor or father and mother, no matter how difficult it may seem.
To catch up on the earlier parts of this theme, see Learning How to Honor a Difficult Parent – Part 1 and Learning How to Honor a Difficult Parent – Part 2 and Learning How to Honor a Difficult Parent – Part 3