In my job I’m constantly meeting new people. Sometimes conversation with a new person is awkward, but other times the conversation flows as if I’ve known the person my whole life….I had one of those conversations recently when I met Mary.
Mary shared her story with me. To over simplify it, her husband, a pastor, had an affair with a woman, her best friend. Ugh. That honks me off just thinking about it. The betrayal. The hurt. The anger. The tears. The gnashing of teeth. The wanting to bash in someone’s teeth. In this particular story, after the divorce, she chose to forgive both her husband and her friend, but she still lives with the wounds, and her life has been altered because of the experience….understandably so.
Which brings me to this point:
Your family is not a sure thing. My family is not a sure thing.
Think I’m wrong, or being overly dramatic? Look around you. Couples you thought would NEVER break up…are divorced. Family units in their “original” form, are broken and left to pick up the pieces.
Why do I want to remind you of this? Because I believe we get “comfortable” in our marriages/families. Let me explain. Yes, a family is a place where we SHOULD be comfortable. We shouldn’t have to be perfect or behave perfectly. But it’s not a place where we should blatantly “poo” on one another constantly, and expect the atmosphere to be joyous…or the outcome to be good. For example, you are kind and funny, to all your co-workers and then you come home and are a bear to your family. Or kids, I bet you wouldn’t say the mean things to your friends that you say to your siblings. We simply take our families for granted.
In Ephesians 5 & 6, the Apostle Paul speaks in regards to our relationships, he says things like this:
Ephesians 5:21 Out of respect for Christ, be courteously reverent to one another.
22-24 Wives, understand and support your husbands in ways that show your support for Christ. The husband provides leadership to his wife the way Christ does to his church, not by domineering but by cherishing. So just as the church submits to Christ as he exercises such leadership, wives should likewise submit to their husbands.
Ephesians 25-28 Husbands, go all out in your love for your wives, exactly as Christ did for the church—a love marked by giving, not getting. Christ’s love makes the church whole. His words evoke her beauty. Everything he does and says is designed to bring the best out of her, dressing her in dazzling white silk, radiant with holiness. And that is how husbands ought to love their wives. They’re really doing themselves a favor—since they’re already “one” in marriage.
29-33 No one abuses his own body, does he? No, he feeds and pampers it. That’s how Christ treats us, the church, since we are part of his body. And this is why a man leaves father and mother and cherishes his wife. No longer two, they become “one flesh.” This is a huge mystery, and I don’t pretend to understand it all. What is clearest to me is the way Christ treats the church. And this provides a good picture of how each husband is to treat his wife, loving himself in loving her, and how each wife is to honor her husband.
and he doesn’t leave out the kids:
Children, do what your parents tell you. This is only right. “Honor your father and mother” is the first commandment that has a promise attached to it, namely, “so you will live well and have a long life.”
God knows what it takes to hold a family together. Wives, respect your husbands….Husbands, love your wives…children, obey your parents. But there’s one more thing, because, you see, we can do everything right…and still get caught in one of the enemy’s schemes. So God gives us this warning and advise!
Ephesians 6:10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God,so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place,15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvationand the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
There is an enemy, Satan. The Bible says that his purpose is to steal, to kill, and to destroy…and he doesn’t like you or your family.
Families, let’s stand firm. Let’s love one another well. Let’s put on the full armor of God, and remember that our battle is not against flesh and blood…but against the evil one.
If your family needs prayer, I would love to pray for you. Message me at email@example.com