(Exodus 20:12)

"Honor your father and mother, that you may have a long, good life in the land the Lord your God will give you."

SOURCE: (Exodus 20:12) The Children's Living Bible, 1970 Tyndale House Publishers, Wheaton Illinois 60187

Honor your Mother and Father. This is not a suggestion, or a choice we have. This is one of those issues God literally has carved into stone. I want to look at this today from two perspectives. The first is a swift kick in the backside for those who have been neglecting their parents. The second is for those with a more complicated situation where there has been damage to your relationship with you Mom, Dad, or both. In the first case, let me just lay an incredible guilt trip on you this morning. You get so busy in your day to day life, you neglect your parents. I am so thankful today that during the last two years of my Mother's life, I called her twice a week. Most calls didn't last long, but it was the effort, the contact, the gesture to let her know I loved her and was thinking about her.

For me, living the organized structured life I do, I had to put it on my daytimer each week. But I have to put eating on my daytimer. If it isn't on the daytimer it doesn't get done. I tell you that to say, whatever you have to do, make it a priority to contact your Mom and Dad at least once a week. They will appreciate it, you will be thankful for it, and God has commanded you to honor them. My Father passed away when I was just 15, so during my early adult life I only dealt with my mother on holiday's. She passed away on Christmas of 1998. I am so thankful to the Lord that in 1992 we reestablished a close relationship and during the last couple years of her life we were very close. You only have one Mom, one Dad, so cherish them, honor them.

I realize from my emails each day, that many of you have a difficult relationship with your Mom and Dad for many reasons. With divorce so prevalent in the last 20 years, that has strained many relationships. There are many other factors that have resulted in distant relationships. Here is what I must encourage you with today. God commanded that we honor our parents. Just like in other relationships, you can never control the heart of your Mother or Father. Only God can do that. To follow the Lord, you have to put forth your best effort though.

Regardless of the hurt and pain from what may have happened in the past, you need to forgive, and love them. If they reject these advances of love, then you have done all that you can do, and we just need to pray for God to move on their heart. But you MUST try. It is not an option. I realize that it will be difficult for some of you because of things that have happened in the past. But you must rise above your feelings and follow God. He will always honor your commitment to follow Him and obey Him. He will give you strength beyond yourself when you are following Him. Make the effort. Pray, ask God for the strength and reach out to them today.

I love you, am praying for you, and will be praying especially for you today to make honoring your Mother and Father a priority today. God has given us some very clear guidelines to live by, and this is one of them. As in everything, when we are in obedience to His will and way, He blesses us. To know the fullness of His blessings, we must follow Him and obey Him. Make today a special day. No matter what, at least pick up the phone today and call your Mom, your Dad, and tell them how much you love them. Life is so short. I wish sometimes that I could call my Dad, or Mom, and just say I love you. They are both with the Lord, so I can't do that. If your Mom and Dad are still alive, then track them down today. It will only take a few minutes. Just simply tell them how much you love them. God loves you deeply. Show your love for Him today by honoring your Mother and Father. He commanded that we do this.

As part of this special series, I am happy to offer to you an incredible book, "Choosing A Nursing Home And Living With Your Choice". I know the author personally and it is a resource I am proud to be able to offer to you. Mary is an RN with an extensive background in the nursing home industry. It is THE BEST Christian book ever on dealing with this subject that is rarely addressed. It is practical, hard hitting, and walks you through the process step-by-step. Because it is not in print, the publisher charged us $5 per book. I have prayed about this and am led to charge you NOTHING, because I feel it is that important for you to have it. I would ask however that you pray and give a gift to Liveprayer if the Lord leads you to. For those who can't give, that is no problem, just ask for the book and I will send it to you, no charge, I will pay the postage. For those who can give, give what you are able to offset our costs of getting this book to those who can't give. To get your book, simply email me at bkeller@liveprayer.com and request it. Please include your address so I can send it to you. To give a gift on your major credit card, you can go to our website, www.liveprayer.com and click on the "Donation" button. Or, you can mail your gift to:

6660 46th Avenue North
St. Petersburg, Florida 33709

***HOWEVER YOU GIVE, YOU STILL NEED TO EMAIL ME AT bkeller@liveprayer.com with your name and address that I can send you the book. I rarely endorse resources, but for this week, for this topic, it is the ONLY comprehensive book I have found from a Christian perspective that handles this delicate issue with real-life direction in a no-nonsense way.

***I realize that many have not had the type of relationship with your parents God intended. for many, this week will bring up many bad memories. It is not an accident. For some, God wants to help you get them behind you once and for all. For some, you may need to deal with these issues in an ongoing counseling situation. I personally know the folks at www.barnabus.com. They do a great job. In the past, I have led many to their Christian Counseling services and have received nothing but good reports about them. They may be an answer to prayer.

In His love and service,
Your friend and brother in Christ,
Bill Keller

If I can help you in any way you can contact me through my personal email at bkeller@liveprayer.com.

***I am excited to let you know that the Liveprayer Daily Devotional is now available via audio each day. Simply go to http://www.liveprayer.com/DailyDevotionalAudio.html. Click on "Search by Category", then locate DAILY DEVOTIONAL. I want to thank Ed Morando for making this service available for FREE to Liveprayer.com.

This message is "Honoring Your Mother and Father Part One.

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