5 Ways Grown Children Can Love Their Parents

The Gospel Coalition | 12/10/2018 | Staff
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Let’s be honest. Many of our relationships with our parents are challenging.

In my Chinese American family and community, parenting styles were unidirectional, with the parenting coming from above and little from alongside. This was compounded by our communication and other cultural barriers.

Relationship - Parents - Children - Relationship - Children

But just because our relationship with our parents was poor when we were children doesn’t mean the relationship can’t change. As grown children, we have the opportunity to walk alongside our parents as we seek to honor and love them as God calls us to. This is an opportunity to make Christ and his ways beautiful to them.

1. God wants you to minister to them.

Shame - Parents - People - Endless - Lectures

To my (entirely appropriate) shame, I sinfully saw my parents as people who must be endured, especially in what felt like endless lectures with wagging fingers and shaming scowls. Thank God he convicted me. I have since come to find (and create) opportunities to move toward my parents in love.

The Lord has placed us in our parents’ lives that we might minister his grace to them. They too need prayer, godly wisdom, and biblical community as they battle against the world, the flesh, and the Devil. It certainly takes patience, strategy, grace, and determination. But of course it would. Because God wants us to love as he loved—with grace, mercy, and fierce determination.

God - Parents - Lives - Minister - Grace

God has placed us in our parents’ lives that we might minister his grace to them.

2. Seek to know them.

Hand - Venture - Mom - Mom - Chance

On the one hand this is a risky venture. You might ask your mom, “Tell me again, Mom, about how you didn’t have the chance to go to school,” and she might lecture and shame you in the reply: “It’s because we didn’t have the same opportunity we have given you. So you better not mess up.”

But through patience, gentleness, and genuine curiosity, your...
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