Behaviors to Be Developed and as Results of Spiritual Transformation and Formation:
Love (Rom.13.9; Matt.19.19; Eph. 5.22)
Kindness (1 Cor. 13.4; Eph. 4.32; 1 Th 5.15)
Forgiveness (Eph 4.32; Col. 3.13)
Patience (Gal. 5.22)
Caring (1 Th 2:7; 1 Peter 5.2)
Self-control (1 Th 5.8; 5.13)
Good (1 Peter 2.12)
Submission, Mutual and to God (Eph. 5:21)
Respect (Eph 5.33;1 Peter 2.17; 1 Peter 3.16)
Behaviors to be Avoided and Overcome through Spiritual Transformation and Formation (Gal.5.20):
Fits of rage
Dissention & factions
and anything that was the opposite of the first list.
It will be noticed that in very few places is there any emphasis on control or power and it is specifically linked to the behaviors to be avoided (selfish ambition, lack of respect, lack of unity, lack of mutual submission to God, etc.)
Anyone who argues that the verses that say a man is the head of a woman, should be very careful and very clear as to the context of that source of authority. The rest of the setting clearly says as Christ is head of the Church.
Does Christ limit a person from service or voice in the Church?
Does Christ control the Church?
Does Christ make his Church to suffer?
Does Christ make his Church to feel inferior?
Does Christ make his Church second class?
Does Christ make his Church ...
Go back to the list of behaviors to be demonstrated in the believers among themselves and as they interacted with the world around them. This is important, because all that they did was a witness to the validity of the message of the Gospel.
A careful and honest look at the model of Christ and the Church applied to the marriage relationship reveals how far astray we have often gone.
In the marriage vows, women were once required to "obey" their husband? Where did that come from? Where is there a Biblical instruction for such...
It is clear when looking at the expectations of the Christians in the New Testament that issues of power and control are subsumed into a mutual love and sacrifice. Why should the marriage be any different? Why the emphasis on who is in charge or in control or calls the shots? The following principles are derived from scripture as working rules of conduct for individuals in what we will call a "Christian Marriage":
Those in a Christian Marriage will tend and care for one another in love. For Jesus said the greatest commandment was that you love one another.
Those in a Christian Marriage will go out of their way to help one another.
Those in a Christian Marriage will build up and edify one another.
Those in a Christian Marriage will mutually respect one another.
Those in a Christian Marriage will share one another's burdens.
Those in a Christian Marriage will joyfully sacrifice for one another.
Those in a Christian Marriage will pray for one another and live peacefully with one another.
Those in a Christian Marriage will be members of one another and be as one body and, as much as possible, they will be of one mind.
Those in a Christian Marriage will be humble and not think more highly of themselves than they should.
Those in a Christian Marriage will be tolerant, longsuffering, kind and forgiving of one another.
Those in a Christian Marriage will sow into great love, goodness, compassion and commitment so that they will harvest those in the relationship.
Those in a Christian Marriage will seek love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness and faith.
Those in a Christian Marriage will seek to avoid vanities, envying or provoking one another.
Those in a Christian Marriage will be subject, in love, to one another with respect and honor.
Those in a Christian Marriage will love one another as they love themselves and as Christ has loved us to the point of giving his own life for our good.
Those in a Christian Marriage will live a life of good works, willing to communicate and keeping the faith.
Those in a Christian Marriage will be swift to listen, slow to speak, and slow to grow angry.
Those in a Christian Marriage may grow angry but will not let the sun set on unresolved issues but will seek to make peace, ask and receive forgiveness, and work to improve.
This cycle throbs with purpose, with forward movement, and with change and new life.
Change is the constant companion of growth and it is our ability to accept and enjoy each new phase of life that brings personal satisfaction.
Change is an opportunity to make course corrections, expand knowledge and gain useful experience.
Yes, each year we add a year. Look at a tree silently adding rings, branches, stretching toward the sun and deep inside all the secrets of the universe, the events of the passing years, and the flexibility that insured survival, all wait to be learned in their own time.
It is New Year...a new life awaits for those with the courage to begin anew.
Marilyn A. Hudson
please place on the subject line the site name or it will be deleted as spam.