Sent:  April 28, 2003

Subject:  Give Your Parents Joy!

Dear Ethan & Emily:

I try to read my Bible every day.  I love doing so…always looking for ways I can set a more godly example for each of you.  As you know, your mother and I take very seriously our family responsibilities before God.

In like manner, I find the Bible offers very direct advice to children also.  And as we approach Mother’s Day, I pray these words will have special significance, as I have never met a more wonderful person and mother than your mother…my “Honey Bunny.”

In Proverbs 23, God says:  “Listen to your father, who gave you life, and don’t despise your mother’s experience when she is old.  Get the truth and don’t ever sell it; also get wisdom, discipline, and discernment.  The father of godly children has cause for joy.  What a pleasure it is to have wise children.  So give your parents joy!  May she who gave you birth be happy” (vv.22-25).

Getting right to the point, God gives this warning which is sobering:  “Those who bring trouble on their families inherit only the wind” (Prov. 11:29).  The Life Application Bible notes for this verse remind us:  “One of the greatest resources God gives us is the family.  Families provide acceptance, encouragement, guidance, and counsel.  Bringing trouble on your family–whether through anger or through an exaggerated desire for independence–is foolish because you cut yourself off from all they provide.  In your family, strive for healing, communication, and understanding.”

May that be our goal daily as a genuine Christian family, and may we demonstrate our love for our Lord in so doing…

Sending my love and gratitude for my two wonderful children,