Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Another Way to Shine! Being An Effective Spiritual Leader

All of us could be better spiritual leaders. The Bible has some good things to say about husbands and wives. I am sure you are well aware of the "wives submit yourselves to your husbands" verse. It has been taken way out of context so many times.  Here is the passage:
Eph 5:22-33,
22 Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. 23 For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. 24 Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.
25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, 26 that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, 27 that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish. 28 So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself. 29 For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church. 30 For we are members of His body, of His flesh and of His bones. 31 “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” 32 This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church. 33 Nevertheless let each one of you in particular so love his own wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.
Verse 22-24 is simply a  hierarchical statement of truth. God has ordained the family in the same way as He has the Church.  Christ is the head of the Church, so is the husband the head of the family. The submission aspect is simply a recognition of this Godly structure and intent. It has nothing to do with wives, as persons themselves, submitting to anything unethical or wrong just because the husband is the head.
The rest of the passage concerns our attitude toward our wife. We are to love our wife as Christ loved the Church. That statement is so loaded. Christ has done everything for the Church including giving His life and forgiving us in the following ways:
1)  When we do not measure up to His standard
2)  When we do not listen
3)  When we do our own thing
4)  When we do not pray or communicate
5)  When we get angry for the wrong reasons
6)  When we do not trust
7)  When we purposely place others and other things first
8)  When we treat Him with a cavalier attitude
9)  When we ignore Him
10) When we do not care for the things He cares for
Many more could be added, but I am sure you get the point.
We are to love our wives in the same way Christ loves the Church. It involves daily sacrifice, giving of time, always being available, communicating, listening, patience, second and third and fourth, etc... chances, not ignoring, managing our anger, getting priorities straight, always caring for what they care for, and always being involved. That is how Christ loves us and for that we are truly thankful. But He also expects us to love our wife in the same manner. She is our helper, our companion for life, and truly the one that will never ever quit loving you. In mystery form God has made us one with each other. We live as a family unit, so to speak, because we live in one another.  We need each other and God in His omniscience knew who would be the perfect helpmeet. I tell people all the time that if you can love your wife in this manner then she will never have a problem with submission passage be cause she will gladly look up to you with eyes of adoration. Being an effective spiritual leader means following in obedience the One who leads us, Jesus. By the way, have you told her how beautiful she is to you today?
We do not have to be superman we just need to care. We need to listen and respond with empathy. God will give us direction if we are willing to trust Him for the answer. Remember this from 1 Cor. 13: 4-8a, "Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up;  does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil;  does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth;  bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails."
Come on guys..show some love!
God Bless
Bro. Mike


Anonymous said...

I have to say as a wife, that so speaks to my soul. I am so sure many women want their husband to take the lead as the spiritual leader of their home. I am blessed to have a husband that gets that and has come around to leading us. It took a little while,but he realized I wanted more leadership in that area and he took the lead. Women have so many other domestic areas to lead in that it can mean all the difference if we really can depend on our men. I thank God everyday for the order He created and for the man he chose to lead our family. We serve an awesome God!