I'm the only Christian in my family

I'm the only Christian in my family - how do I honour my parents?

I'm the only Christian in my family, and while some of my family members are accepting of this, one of my parents is strongly atheist. How do I commit myself to Jesus and Church fully, whilst also "honoring my father and mother"?

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Dr Bob Mayo

Bob Mayo

Ask and you will be answered - doctoral Doctor Bob gives quick, clear and concise responses to the issues of the day. Is it best to be popular or most popular in your class? How Christian is too Christian? Is kissing going out? All questions come from the Bridge family of young people, youth workers, friends and others. All submissions can remain anonymous. Join up and start asking...

I'm the only Christian in my family - how do I honour my parents?

Question

I'm the only Christian in my family, and while some of my family members are accepting of this, one of my parents is strongly atheist and thus reluctant for me to attend church regularly. How do I commit myself to Jesus and church fully, whilst also "honouring my father and mother"?

Answer

Thank your atheist parent for their concern and tell them that what they have said to you has helped you to think through your position and has made you realize the importance of your Christian faith. Tell them that there is no need for them to worry about you – you have thought everything through carefully and you know what you are doing. Tell them that you are no different to them – they take their position seriously and so do you. Many would say that, since they cannot prove that God doesn't exist, their atheism is also based on faith. The Bible says children should obey but young people (such as yourself) should honour their parents (Ephesians 6:2). A modern word for honour is respect and with respect (on both sides) you can achieve anything. This means that you don’t blindly do as you are told but you respect your parents right to speak as they have done. The Bible is clear that your faith will be tested to prove its genuineness and so if you weren't dealing with this issue you might be facing another (1 Peter 1:7). You can be sure that, however difficult the situation may be, if God has brought you to it he will bring you through it.

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