7 reasons I am thankful for my parents
A daughter of Christian parents shares how God blessed her
Raising children is an enormous responsibility. Proverbs 22:6 says, “Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.” Parenting isn’t easy!
But growing up, I was blessed with two wonderful Christian parents. And I am so thankful! These are the reasons I am grateful to God for my parents:
1 – They love me
As a girl growing up in the 21st Century, you need a place where you can feel loved and accepted. Many of my friends sought that love and acceptance in peers, the internet, or boyfriends. But I knew that I could always go to my parents, and feel loved and accepted by them.
2 – They taught me self control
As a child growing up, I did not appreciate many of the lessons my parents taught me in this regard. I wanted to eat now – not wait for dinner. I wanted to buy that now and worry about paying for it later.
But my parents’ rulings at those times built up a very helpful attitude in me. I learned that I didn’t need instant gratification on everything – very different to the message the world was giving me!
3 – They modelled a beautiful marriage
My parents’ marriage was always characterised by love and respect for one another, no matter what the external circumstances were. Witnessing this while I was growing up has taught me exactly what to aim for in a marriage myself.
4 – They taught me to love God’s Word and prayer
Modelling faithful Bible reading and prayer habits can go a long way. As a child, I saw that my parents made it a priority to pray together every the morning.
And in the evenings, no matter how late it was, or tired we were, reading the Bible as a family was always a priority. It’s through small things like this that I learned to value prayer and Bible reading as much as my parents do.
5 – They made it okay to be different
As a child, being different is hard. Day to day, at school, being a Christian was hard work! But I knew that at the end of a day, I could always come home to a Christian environment. We were in this together, as a family, and we knew it was okay to be different to the world around us.
6 – They gave me opportunities for fellowship
My parents were always very active in helping me connect with God’s wider church family. Just like they went to church on a Sunday and had Bible study on a weeknight, they also gave me the opportunity to do that. On a Sunday I went to Sunday School, and on a weeknight, I went to GFS (a youth Bible study) with other girls my age.
And I always knew that this was important! It came before homework, and choir, and sporting pursuits – anything else that other families thought was important.
As Christians, we’re told that we shouldn’t be “giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching,” (Hebrews 10:25). My parents showed me that they believed this was as true for their children as it was for them.
7 – They encouraged me to serve
From a very early age, my parents found opportunities for me to serve, and encouraged me to do so. Whether it was sharing in welcoming at church when they were rostered on, or helping out with crèche, there was always something I could do to serve God’s kingdom.
That, coupled with their own model of serving selflessly, helped me to build up both skills and a desire to keep serving God in these and other ways.
These seven things still form the basis of who I am as a Christian today. It’s like they’re the pillars that I’ve built my entire life on – and that’s a very valuable legacy! It’s these things that I would hope to pass on to my own children some day.
Praise God for our parents!