On Having Respect for Your Mother: A Thank You to My Dad

There was the time I felt wrongly punished (what child doesn’t sometime?).  Mother and I had been arguing over something (who knows what now) and I didn’t get my way. I was upset and left the kitchen to go upstairs.  Unfortunately, the door between the kitchen and the hallway had a tendency to slam.  I didn’t mean to slam the door, but when I closed it, it sounded as though I had purposely done so.  You had heard us arguing, heard the door bang, and assumed I had slammed it in anger at Mom.  You admonished me for treating Mom so disrespectfully, and didn’t believe me when I told you I didn’t slam that door on purpose.  You said something to the effect that such a disrespectful child had no business living in your house and put me out.  It was drizzling and I had no place to go, so I found myself standing in the garage feeling very sorry for myself for being misunderstood and wrongly accused.

I don’t know if it was that day or later that I realized I had learned an important lesson.  What you taught me that day was that you would not tolerate disrespect for your wife, and when I realized that, I really appreciated it.  You were teaching me that day, in no uncertain terms, to honor my mother.  As a woman-to-be and most likely a future wife, you also taught me something that day about my own worth in your eyes, and about how I should expect a husband to treat me.

Thanks, Dad!  I wish all men would teach their children, by example, to hold their mothers and wives in such high esteem.

From Treasures from My Dad by Charleen Bridgman, 1991

“Honor your father and mother” (this is the first commandment with a promise), “that it may go well with you and that you may live long in the land.” Ephesians 6:2-3


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