If you are a child, read this to your parents so that you can train them well. If you are an adult, then you may wish to read this together with your child.
First of all, kids, it is YOUR parents you are to obey. It is up to your parents to tell you which other adults are to be obeyed. Probably they will want you to obey teachers, policemen, some church leaders, babysitters they chose, and your grandparents. If you have a question about who to obey, please ask your parents first, even if you have to say to the other person, “Please wait a minute and I’ll ask my parents if this is OK.” Never obey anyone who is trying to do you harm. If anyone tries to harm you or make you feel uncomfortable, tell your parents or teacher immediately. You are to be respectful of everyone, but to obey your parents fully.
This means NOW. Immediately. The first words out of your mouth after your mom or dad give you something to do should be “Okay, mom” or “Okay, dad.” Then rise up and do it. Be happy in the way you say that. Attitude is important.
“But, what if something else makes it impossible to do what my parent asks?” It’s simple to fix that one. Here’s what you do. You appeal to your parent. But it needs to be done the right way. Say, “Mom, I’m ready to obey you right now if you wish, but would you mind if I ask you something first?” Likely your mom will say, “No, I don’t mind.” Then you can tell mom or dad whatever you need to, such as, “Well, you asked me to finish my homework before I get up from the desk. Which thing would you like for me to do first?”
You get the idea? Let’s go over it again. After you hear the command, say something kind like “Yes sir.” Then get up and do what is asked for. If you have some reason you cannot do it, or strongly prefer not to do that at that time, you may ask if you can say something first. If you get permission to do that, then share your idea. That’s called an “appeal.” Then do exactly what your parent tells you that you should do. It’s simple.
Now, maybe you might want to practice making an appeal together right now to make sure you have it down. Once you know how to appeal, everyone will be much happier, including you. Enjoy obeying!
Reading Our Children: Is There Somebody Alive in There?
Copyright Jim Elliff 2014; reposted September 28 2021