An Oasis of Grace
Today's sermon (1 Peter 5:5) was about humility, which is probably the slipperiest of all fruits of the spirit. Just when you think you have a grip on humility, you've lost it; there's no resting in the confidence of your humility.
My husband said the remark that affected him during the message was that we lose sight of being humble (and in essence, let our pride begin to control us) when we lose sight of the cross. When we live in sight of the gospel, and the suffering for Christ on our behalf while we were yet sinners is crushing to us, being prideful is revolting to us. Christ did not count equality with God something to be grasped, yet so often, we count equality with God something to be grasped. Why aren't things going the way I think they should be? How often we forget that Christ came to this earth simply to shed His blood for us, when we couldn't care less. How humbling that thought should be, and how I hope it crushes our souls anew today and every day. We must, as Pastor Brett says, preach the gospel to ourselves daily. Let us never forget where we came from.
My thoughts during the sermon were different than that of my husband. Our pastor said that when we are truly humble and poor in spirit, we will strive to follow the "one another" commands in scripture: love one another, bear with one another, rejoice with one another, etc. He went on to say that the way we put this into practice to make our church body an "oasis of grace" begins in our homes. How we put our humility into practice in our homes affects how we act in humility toward the body of believers. What a challenging conviction. I stumble in being humble with my husband all the time. I thought of all the excuses we make, all the things that get in the way of us truly pursuing Christ in our home together, and there are too many to count. I was very convicted that I need to personally spend more time, focus on energy on my home. This is a different conviction than the one that I've been having which is to stay at home, keep it, help my husband and raise our daughter for the glory of God. No, this is a more realistic conviction for where I am right now. I am working; this is a fact and it cannot be changed in the near future. But, I still am called to focus and care for my home, and not just in terms of chores. Everything can become legalistic, and that is the legalistic out for keeping the home: getting it 100% clean. But that's not it. I confessed to my husband today that I expect him to lead because that's his job, but I don't ever pray for him in his leadership. I support him in his endeavors, but I don't take seriously the burden that is on him to lead our family and support him in prayer. That lack of prayer support, ultimately, boils down to pride and a lack of humility. Heaven forbid I would look around and envy the leaders that other women's husbands are. As Paul said, may that never be! My conviction is to tend my home, spiritually and in thought, keeping it a place of, not just physical calm and peace, but of spiritual peace as well. What a pleasant relief of pressure that is, since we do nothing in our own power, but all through Christ, our sovereign King.