August 29, 2013
“..that He might present to himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she would be holy and blameless.” Ephesians 5:27 New American Standard
A preacher who was told he would never last in New York City wrote: “We are to live today knowing we are, and always will be, an absolute beauty in the eyes of God. Put another way, we are as loved and honored by God now, as we will be when we are perfectly radiant in heaven.” What if this image and promise was at the center of every marriage? A husband’s calling would be to love his wife with such clarity that she would live out of the abundantly abiding knowledge of her beauty not only in her husband’s eyes … but even more in her heavenly Father’s eyes. As a husband, your highest aim is for your wife to know how beautiful she really is in Christ. You know that because this is the center of Christ’s work in your own life and his relentless grace-shaping love for the church. What gets in the way of you loving your wife like this? Why do “we” guys stumble along with this “resurrection-centered life” we’ve been given through Jesus. Why do we settle for so little when it comes to loving our wives? You’ve been given .. literally and spiritually the incredible gift of loving you’re wife like Christ loved the church. Why would you let anything or anyone define your marriage apart from Christ? Does your wife know how beautiful her Father sees her because of how you are loving her? Impossible you think? Of course it is without Jesus being this “brand-new life” in you. Too late? Too much guilt of neglect? Too many wounds? The marriage God has designed for you is Christ-defined .. Christ-shaped.. and Christ-filled. And if He is working out all the wrinkles, spots, and blemishes … you’re freed up to love with a beauty that heals .. that radiates love .. and changes just about everything inside your wife. Yeah .. It is a very holy calling. And it starts with this moment …
“What a God we have! And how fortunate we are to have him, the Father of our Master Jesus! Because Jesus was raised from the dead, we’ve been given a brand-new life and have everything to live for, including a future in heaven — and the future starts now!
Ken Chester: Grace-Gripped is sent M-F to Wrinkle-Free Followers of Jesus and friends of Priority One (firstname.lastname@example.org)