The world swears when it is ungrateful and angry at the way life unfolds. Anyone who thinks he deserves to have life unfold as he pleases is bound to be frustrated and discontent much of the time. People who don’t get their own way in life begin to feel resentful and sorry for themselves. Self-pity is a powerful, negative attitude that gives rise to many, many excuses for sin. Self-pity is a direct rejection of God’s control. It is saying, “I don’t like what you’ve done in my life, and I absolutely will not be content! I can’t change it, so I’ll just be angry and miserable.” Thus, swearing is considered a justifiable response to unfair treatment. It is a […]
There is a side to Valentine’s Day which is good. The good of Valentine’s Day is an opportunity to express love for each other. I Corinthians 13 is a good guide here. It is good to let someone know they are loved and appreciated. A smile, a card, warm appreciation accompanied by flowers, chocolate, or other seasonal gift says you are special in a good way. Married couples can find other good ways to appropriately celebrate the day. So, in this sense – Happy Valentine’s Day! But, there is another aspect of Valentine’s Day that is bad.This is the “give to get side.” Commercials proclaim – give the right gift and be rewarded. The reward of course is sex. Culturally, […]
The combination of self-seeking motives and being easily angered are effective deterrents against having your teenager believe you when you say you love them. For example, you just confirmed that your fifteen-year-old son, Justin, has been looking at pornography on the internet. You could become enraged. You could be hurt that your son has embarrassed you in this way. You tell him in a loud, stern voice that this behavior will stop immediately and he will be grounded with zero privileges for months. You could also let him know that you are confiscating his computer, phone, tablet and any other electronic devise he has or ever will have. You could tell him how disappointed you are in him. You […]
If you were to ask Christians if they loved their spouse, what answer would you expect? If you were to ask Christians if they loved their children, what answer would you expect? If you were to ask Christians if they ever struggle with joyfully loving their family when their family is unkind to them, what answer would you expect? For most the answers would be yes, yes, and sadly, yes. The Apostle Paul continues explaining what love is not in the remainder of verse five of I Corinthians 13. We have looked at love is not rude. Now here are two more love is not’s: Love is not self-seeking, Love is not easily angered, These two […]
To love is to identify with Christ. To identify with Christ is to invite the same opposition that he invited. Biblical love does not bode well with a world that is in love with itself. Committing to love is committing to war. Love is not for the faint of heart. To truly love nothing less than the power of the Holy Spirit will suffice. True love means a commitment to die to yourself. Things to think about as Valentine’s Day approaches.
Suppose you received mercy from God proportionate to the mercy you display to others. Not a comforting thought is it? Actually, it is a disturbing thought! But is it disturbing enough to result in repentance? Today is a day we set aside for corporate worship. You will praise God for his mercy. But will your praise result in you being more merciful? If if doesn’t then your praise will be empty and self-serving. God doesn’t call you to worship just so you can have a moving experience. He calls you to worship that leads to repentance.He calls you to be merciful as he is merciful.
Instead of ascribing to God what is rightfully his due, Nemo is being blamed for the massive snowstorm that struck the Northeast this past weekend. No one will pay much attention to weather attributed to Nemo, other than grumbling and complaining about shoveling snow. However, the Bible teaches us that large storms like this Northeaster are sent by God to gain our attention. Weather that stops us from our daily routine is designed by God to make us acknowledge him for who he is: God’s voice thunders in marvelous ways; he does great things beyond our understanding. He says to the snow, ‘Fall on the earth,’ and to the rain shower, ‘Be a mighty downpour.’ So that […]
“Jeremy, would you please not get so loud.” “Sorry, mom, I was just playing with Caitlyn.” “Well, you can play quietly, and be considerate of others like the Bible says.” “But, mom, you told me I need to play with Caitlyn more, and we were having fun.” “Jeremy, don’t argue with me and make this my fault.” “But mom…” “Jeremy, that’s enough! You always do this. You just can’t accept direction. You did the same thing this morning. I am tired and I need you to be quiet, like I told you. Do you understand!!” At this point three-year-old Caitlyn starts to cry. “Now you have made Caitlyn cry! Can’t I ever […]
You don’t have to have a degree in biblical studies to know that love is a dominate theme in the Scriptures. One example will suffice. In Colossians 3:12-14, Paul lists a number of Christian virtues. Then, in verse 14, he says this about love: And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Pretty much he is saying that love is what makes everything else work. I Corinthians 13 is the gold standard for learning what Christian love looks like. No, the chapter does not come with a footnote that says these principles are to be applied to parenting. It does not need to. The teaching of the Holy Spirit is […]
We are looking at 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 to gain a biblical perspective of what it means to love our children. After two statements about what love is come three statements that teach what love is not. Love does not envy. Love does not boast. Love is not proud. These have special implications for parents. Envy has a particularly nasty twist with regard to parenting. This occurs when you start looking around at other families and conclude that they are much better off than you are. Then you start thinking that you wish your children were like those in the other families that are doing soooo much better than your family. This leads to discouragement with your own children […]