What our homes need most
Most of us here have experienced what a good Christian home is all about. However not everyone has been blessed in this way. In fact there are many in the world today who have never experienced home life like God has intended. We live in fast paced society where we rush from one thing to another and many just think about themselves and have little regard to what makes a family strong and united. We need to understand that next to the church the home is a very important aspect of a Christians life and it was created from the beginning of time.
Genesis 2:18 And the
LORD God said, "It is not good that man should be alone; I will
make him a helper comparable to him."†
19 Out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the
field and every bird of the air, and brought them to Adam to see what he
would call them. And whatever Adam called each living creature, that was its
name.† 20 So Adam gave names
to all cattle, to the birds of the air, and to every beast of the field. But
for Adam there was not found a helper comparable to him.† 21 And the LORD God caused a deep
sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept; and He took one of his ribs, and closed up
the flesh in its place.† 22
Then the rib which the LORD God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He
brought her to the man.† 23
And Adam said: "This is now bone of my bones And flesh of my flesh;
She shall be called Woman, Because she was taken out of
With this being the case we should take our home life very serious and do what we can to makes our homes like God would want them to be. So this morning we are going to examine several things that our homes need the most.
1. I would say the first thing that we need to work on is stressing the importance of keeping our marriage together forever. The divorce rate in this country works out to be about 50% and about 51% of those divorces have children in them which leaves a lot of broken homes with these children having to learn to how to cope with this situation. Now I know that there are situations where marriages simply cannot work out because it take 2 tango and there is nothing to stop an individual from departing from the marriage if they decide to. Besides obeying the gospel and becoming a Christian, marriage is one the most important decision that you will make. It important that we do our best to pick the right person and to realize that God wants us to be together forever. Jesus makes this very clear in:
Matthew 19:3 The Pharisees also came to Him, testing Him, and saying to Him, "Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for just any reason?"† 4 And He answered and said to them, "Have you not read that He who made them at the beginning 'made them male and female,'† 5 "and said, 'For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh'?† 6 "So then, they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate."
Jesus is teaching that Gods original plan from the beginning of time was for one man and on women to be joined together until the day they die. He goes on to tell these Jews that even though Moses gave them a certificate of divorce that wasnít God original plan and that we should abide by that plan.
However many of those in the world do not care about Godís plan today. Today there is a different mentality about marriage. The attitude is this. I will remain in the marriage as long as it is convenient for me but as soon as it becomes too much of a hassle or if I want to choose another path we will simply go our separate ways. Many of the movie stars show this attitude as they usually have their mate sign a prenuptial agreement. If they really considered marriage was for life then they wouldnít ever worry about such things.†
As Christians we need to do our best to keep marriages strong and to work through the problems we run into instead of running away from them. I cant stress it enough that we must be very sure of who select for a mate. I would also tell you that I believe that its very important that you choose someone who already a Christian because then you will know that you will be likeminded and have a companion that can help encourage you through out your entire Christian life because they will have the same respect for God and his Word as your do. If you marry someone that isnít a Christian and you think you are going to change them afterwards then you most likely have your heart broken because most of time they will not become a Christian and you will always be struggling as you have to leave your mate at home as you go to worship God.
Many today donít really understand just how painful divorce can be for all the parties involved. They may think they are going through a rough time in their relationship but many times divorce is far worse solution than if the couple had tried really hard to work out the problems in their relationship. So our first key ingredient to a happy home is to have a marriage that works and last forever.
2. The second thing a home needs is to have a genuine and growing love. Like many other words that we use today Love had really lost its true meaning. However the apostle Paul gives one the greatest description of genuine love in:
1 Corinthians 13:4 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up;† 5 does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil;† 6 does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth;† 7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.† 8 Love never fails.
Is this your definition of love? I hope that it is but it certainly isnít the way that most people in the world would define. I read a survey taken from a college where they asked the students what love was. Some answered it meant getting what you wanted others said it meant finding someone you were physically attracted to. But according to Paul Love is so much more than this and its important that as Christians we learn how to develop this kind of love for one another and especial in our home.
Whenever we have the kind of love that Paul describes toward our mate then we can easily see how happy our marriage will be. You see when we true love our mate this way we will be willing to put up with what we perceive as there weaknesses and we will be able to focus in on their strengths. When true love is evolved you will have a relationship that will make you happy and it will be a great influence on your children. Even though Paul wasnít a married man with the help of the Holy Spirit he had great understand of how a married couple was to treat one another. Notice how he puts the genuine love into perspective in:
Ephesians 5:25 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.†
To me this really put the love we are to have for our mate into perspective. We are to love just like Christ loved the church. We all know how much Christ loved the church because he gave his life for it and if we are going to be successful in growing in our love for another we must learn to be willing to give it our all in our marriages and we need to give it our all when it comes to our children. Our Children are gifts from God and we should show them this same type of genuine love. It was God who taught us to love and we can play a part in showing our children by example what this genuine love is all about.
You see when we have this kind of love in our family we can truly have a peaceful family which is united together and willing to serve God almighty. So our home needs this type of genuine love and we continue to grow in it.
3. Another important thing a homes needs is good communication. One of the major reason for divorce or friction within a family is breakdown in communication. It takes good communication to make any relationship work especial when comes to the married couple. There is great need for us to learn how to listen even when we may not agree with what are mate is saying. James says this,
James 1:19 So then, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath;† 20 for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God.
Boy this is some great advice and will help all of us if we will take it to heart. It is so easy for us interrupt our mate without hearing them out all the way and jump to conclusions and then to chew them out up one side and down the other. Then when we find out that we misunderstood our mate and caused all that friction between us then we feel like real heel all because we didnít listen and then think about what were going to say. As Christians we must learn that yelling and screaming just adds to fire instead we should take the advice of:
Proverbs 15:1† A soft answer turns away wrath, But a harsh word stirs up anger.
If we can learn to control our tempers even when we are very frustrated and make ourselves communicate with a soft tone you would be surprised at how much easier it will be to work out a problem with your mate because it will lower the stress level.
Donít forget about communicating with your kids. There are many parents in the world today that have no idea what is going on in their childrenís life because they never talk to them. The days of everyone sitting around the dinner table and eating together seems to be a thing of the past but if we are going to have a home like God wants us to have there is a need for us as parents to spend more time communicating with our children. The same rules of communicating with a soft voice and with love apply to them as well. Some parents will take out all their frustrations of their day on their kids and because you kids are learning from you, you will notice that they will deal with others in the same manner as you. So effective communication is something that ever home needs.
Another thing every home needs a great respect for Godís authority on the home.
Every institution or organization must have some sort of structure of authority put into to place or there be kayos. This is no different when it comes to the home. Lets look at few verses that bear out the authoritative structure of the home according to Godís Word.
1 Corinthians 11:3 †But I want you to know that the head of every man is Christ, the head of woman is man, and the head of Christ is God.
The main thing I want to point out from this passage is that Christ is the head of man and that man is head of the women. Notice this is Godís divine order of things. This same authority is expanded in:
Ephesians 5:22 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,
So what does all of this mean? This means that the husband is to be the spiritual leader of the home. This does not mean that they a dictator and that his wife is some robot that is there to obey his every command. Rather it is a position where you lead in love, consideration and protection. A husband should treat his wife any differently than he would treat himself. Paul says:
Ephesians 5:28 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.
Now think about this Christ laid down his life for the church because he loved it that much and that shows us as husbands how muck we should love our wives. Not only are the head of our wives Christ is the head of all men and how can we ever say that we are being the husband or father that God wants us to be if we are submissive to perfect will of God. To many times in Christian homes the women are having to be the spiritual leaders. They are they ones that have to push their husbands out the door to go worship God but it shouldnít be this way. It is high time that men take there responsibilities as the spiritual leader of the home more seriously. It is the men that should be leading their family in the way of righteousness. It should be the men that are encouraging the family to seek after God. The men should be great examples of what Christianity is all about. Men we should be playing an active role in teaching our children about God.
Ephesians 6:4 †And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord.†
Notice Paul makes it clear that father are to play part in educated their children in the way of the Lord and that we are not to provoke our children to wrath which of course goes back to having effective communication.
Now this does not mean that ladies do not have any responsibilities in these areas because they can and should also play apart in teaching the children about God. The women should also be a great example in the way they conduct themselves so that they whole family can see Christ working your lives. Wives would do good to encourage their husbands to embrace their role as spiritual leader. Even in household where the husband isnít a Christian the wife can exercise great influence toward him.
1 Peter 3:1 Wives, likewise, be submissive to your own husbands, that even if some do not obey the word, they, without a word, may be won by the conduct of their wives,† 2 when they observe your chaste conduct accompanied by fear.
The God also has instruction for the children.
Ephesians 6:1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.† 2 "Honor your father and mother," which is the first commandment with promise:† 3 "that it may be well with you and you may live long on the earth."
Children God wants you to respect and honor your parents. This means you should do your best to obey your parents because they are just looking out for you and they know what is best. There are many kids today that do not respect there parents and they become the head of the family because everyone tries to do what the kid wants. But that is not the way a house hold is to be run. Part of the reason why kids are not honoring their parents is because the parents having been giving them a reason to. They have not disciplined them when they do wrong and they have effectively communicated with them what they are doing is wrong and that their behavior will not tolerated any longer. As parents is very important that we teach our children to respect us and God almighty.
†If we ran our homes like God wants us to by having marriages that last forever, by having a genuine love that continues to grow and† by having effective communication and having a household that respect Gods authority then we are going to have a strong family unit that isnít going to have a lot problems and they will be faithful to God.
The message of this lesson this morning is simple, when we get back to Godís plan for the home, and follow his simple rules, then our homes will become what God has intended them to be.
Much more could be said about what the home needs but if we will simply embrace the ones that have mentioned this morning we would see a great improvement in our family lives. I want to close with a poem that I think sums up this lesson very well. Now before I read the poem I want to explain what one the words mean in this poem. The word is hearthstone. In the past just about every home had a chimney with open fire place. Well in front of this fire place would be a big flat rock that the whole family would gather around at the end of the day before they kissed each other good night this flat stone is called hearthstone.
I know three things must always be,
To keep a nation strong and free
One is a hearthstone bright and clear,
With busy happy loved-ones near.
One is a ready heart and hand
To love and serve and keep the land.
One is a worn and beaten way,
To where the people go to pray.
So long as these are kept alive,
Nation and people will sure survive.
Lets keep them always, everywhere
The home, the heart, the place of prayer.
We may not be able to return back to the past where the hearthstone was the focal point of a family but we must turn our hearts and our homes back to God.