Honor your father and your mother. (Ex. 20:12)

Have you noticed that some of Grimm’s fairy tales are truly grim? Like the one Joy Davidman retold in one of her books. It was the story of two parents who had a couple of children and one grandfather living with them.

As the grandfather got older, his eating habits deteriorated. He became so sloppy that soup and porridge would be all over him. The parents talked to the grandfather about it, but nothing seemed to change.

Finally, they moved him away from the family table, and he had to sit in the corner of the room alone. Eventually, because he couldn’t handle his food very well, they made him a trough. They put his food in the trough and took away his utensils so he had to pick up the food with his fingers and stuff it in his mouth.

One day the parents saw the children playing in the shed. They were making something with wood, hammer, and nails. They asked the youngsters about it and they said, “We’re building a trough for you for when you get old.”

Children learn how to honor their parents by observing how the parents honor (or dishonor) the grandparents.

The commandment doesn’t say, “Honor them if they deserve it” or “if it’s convenient.” It’s an obligation of respect and consideration. If they’re deceased, honor their memory.

Set an example for your children by honoring your parents.

Ron McClung lives in Fishers, Indiana, with his wife Carol. He has written his weekly column, Positive Perspective, for more than thirty years.

© 2020 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission.

Scriptures taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®.