Harmonizing with Our Parents


Tension between parent and child is a reality, but harmony can be achieved by seeking obedience and doing God’s will.

I have never considered myself to be a good writer; the SAT removed all doubt. The writing portion is scored in three separate categories: reading, analysis, and writing. Each category is evaluated on a scale of 2-8. Upon receiving my results in the mail, I opened up the envelope and peered to see my writing score. Now, I have never been a superstitious person, but someone was trying to tell me something. My score was 666.

Musicianship, on the other hand, is one of my strong suits. I play the trumpet and sing (not at the same time), but my favorite thing to do is to compose music. My English teacher once said, “If you have to write about something, write about something you love. The paper will always turn out better that way.” So, in this article, we are going to look at how music composition, our relationship with our parents, and our relationship with God all fit together.

Before we begin, we need to establish that music is a relationship. A song, simply put, is a relationship between different notes, chords, tempos, and rhythms. The slightest change of any of these things can result in increased musical tension. Great compositions have great tension that then seek resolution. This concept applies to the relationships that we have with our parents. We can all admit that tension between parent and child is a reality. Every one of us has heard, “Go clean up your room,” and then responded, “But why?” Next, we heard, “Because I said so!” When your mom or dad says, “because I said so,” it is the only time that circular reasoning cannot be refuted. Ephesians 6:1-3 says, “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. ‘Honor your father and mother,’ which is the first commandment with promise: ‘that it may be well with you and you may live long on the earth.’” The tension of the relationship that we have with our parents is resolved by seeking obedience.

However, just like in music, not all dissonance or tension is good. Nothing is more upsetting to me than when a note is being played or sung out of tune. It makes me want to turn away and cover up my ears. Likewise, sin is the tension that ruins our relationship with God. It is like an out of tune note for Him. Isaiah 59:2 says, “But your iniquities have separated you from your God; and your sins have hidden His face from you, so that He will not hear.” Thankfully, Christ humbled himself to do the will of God, that He would bear our unrighteousness and be punished for it on the cross (Philippians 2). In this, we have a perfect example of obedience and are reconciled to the Father through imputed righteousness. In other words, through Jesus and His blood, we are no longer tone deaf to God’s will.

So, are you harmonizing with your parents? Do you have tension that needs resolution? Seek humility in your life. As the humbling of Christ was a personal sacrifice for Him, so too should our humility be. We should clean our rooms and do our chores because we know the cross. For when we know the cross, we will understand why God deserves the glory; and if we want to honor God, then we will listen to His will and obey our parents. In the end, it all fits together…just like a well-composed piece of music.