SO MUCH…MORE

17 So I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking. 18 They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts. 19 Having lost all sensitivity, they have given themselves over to sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, with a continual lust for more.

20 You, however, did not come to know Christ that way. 21 Surely you heard of him and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus. 22 You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; 23 to be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24 and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.

25 Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to his neighbor, for we are all members of one body. 26 “In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, 27 and do not give the devil a foothold. 28 He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with his own hands, that he may have something to share with those in need.

29 Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. 32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

Ephesians 4:17-32 (NIV84)

Speak Your Mind: Comment below on what you’ve learned about on of these “So Much…More” contrasts.

VALUE AND APPRECIATE YOUR SPOUSE

SCRIPTURE: Genesis 1:27; 2:18 – HCSB

1:27  So God created man in His own image; 
He created him in the image of God; 
He created them male and female.

2:18  Then the LORD God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper as his complement.”

OBSERVATIONS:  The LORD God (that is to say, our Friend and Authority) created a man and a woman and a marriage.  These two verses are foundational to our understanding of what it means to have a healthy relationship with God and our spouse.  They outline the equal value that men and women share before God, and the complementary nature of their diverse roles.  Coming to grips with the distinction between VALUE and ROLES is critical to a healthy marriage and family, as is APPRECIATING the value and role your spouse is uniquely designed by God to fulfill.

APPLICATION:  I should value Lisa as God values her.  I should appreciate the complementary nature of my relationship with her.  “Appreciate” means “to be grateful or thankful for; to value or regard highly; place a high estimate on; to be fully conscious of; to raise in value; an increase in value.”

  • I can do this verbally.  I can TELL her why I appreciate her.
  • I can do this tangibly.  I can WRITE her a note that communicates her value to me.
  • I can do this physically.  I can SERVE her is a specific way that puts her need at the moment above my own.

PRAYER:  Heavenly Father, thank You for creating me with the capacity to relate to You at a personal level.  My life continues to change because of this connection.  And thank You for giving me my complementary partner in marriage—my wife, Lisa!  Teach me how to make her feel appreciated in all the ways appreciation makes itself know.  Beyond this, let my life be an example of what it means to live in full appreciation of you.  Guide me in the application of these truths so that my life serves to provide a great example and great equipping for our church family.