What Brings Joy

The best thing you can hope to give to your earthly father is to live your life with wisdom. I realize that many parents have raised children well, only to see them make bad decisions that have brought sadness and anything but joy. No parent really wants their children to make a mess. By the same token, if a parent is blessed with a wise son or daughter, the parent may take some of the credit, but cannot take all of the credit. Fathers and mothers make mistakes. They are sinners. So I don’t want to take credit for the blessing of a godly son and godly daughter. But I do agree with this statement in the book of Proverbs: “The father of the righteous will greatly rejoice; he who fathers a wise son will be glad in him.” Proverbs 23:24

The Gift Suggestions if you are a Son or Daughter

This is not a request from my children for a gift. This is not a reminder to Matthew or Elisabeth that I am expecting a gift. My purpose is only to remind each person who has a living parent, that there are some fundamentals you might want to consider before you spend money on a gift.

Make God’s Word a Priority

Psalm 1:1-2 “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night.” You will be a fruitful tree (v.3).

Honor Your Parents even if They are Sinners

Ephesians 6:1-3 “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. ‘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.’” Speak well of them. Show them mercy and grace, just as you have received mercy and grace. Proverbs 20:20 says, “If one curses his father or his mother, his lamp will be put out in utter darkness.”

Take Care of them when they are old and Cantankerous

Proverbs 23:22 “Listen to your father who gave you life, and do not despise your mother when she is old.” Yes, they might be stubborn, cranky, forgetful, and time-consuming. Guess what! You were too. Note to parents: try not to be a pain!

Don’t Waste What God has Given You

Proverbs 29:3 “He who loves wisdom makes his father glad, but a companion of prostitutes squanders his wealth.”

In other words

Be the kind of person who brings joy to everyone who crosses your path. That, of course, will include your father and your mother.

Note to Matt and Beth: Mission accomplished. Gifts are received each time I see you or think of you. Thank you for bringing me joy. Thank you for being careful and thoughtful about a marriage partner. Thanks for being wonderful parents to our delightful granddaughters and grandsons. I am full of joy!

All scripture passages are from the English Standard Version except as otherwise noted.