“Honor your father and mother—which is the first commandment with a promise” (Ephesians 6:2).
Most children are highly motivated to please their parents. Did you know that many adults are just as highly motivated to please their parents?
If you have ever been around small children, you know how hard they work to get a ribbon on the last day of school just to make their parents proud. They are easily corrected if you say, “I will tell your mommy or daddy.”
Adults have this same desire, though it may not be as strong as when they were small. This is especially true when their parents are getting older.
Most of us want to make our parents happy. We take them places, buy them gifts and spend time with them. Why? Because we want to please them, just like we did when we were young.
It is sad when pleasing our parents seems to be an impossible task.
As parents get older, they sometimes begin to see their own lives differently. They may have regrets. They may grieve that they are getting older and that their bodies do not look or function like they used to. They may miss their children. They miss running their household.
These many factors can possibly make them difficult to please.
All we can do is try to be positive. Try to listen. Try to forgive and love. We must not blame ourselves. No one can manufacture happiness for anyone else. We each have to find it for ourselves, including our parents.
Kimberly Snider is a missionary to the Philippines.
From “Moments for Moms,” a free email subscription.
Copyright (c) 2003 Women’s Ministries of the Assemblies of God.