“The crown of the home is godliness; the beauty of the home is order; the glory of the home is hospitality; the blessing of the home is contentment” (Henry VanDyke).
“A woman who creates and sustains a home, and under whose hands children grow up to be strong and pure men and women, is a creator second only to God” (Helen Hunt Jackson).
“Hatred stirreth up strifes, but love covereth all sins” (Psa. 10:12). “A hateful spirit isn’t satisfied to forgive and forget; it insists on raking up old grudges and quarrels. A heart of love draws a curtain of secrecy over the faults and failures of others” (Believers Bible Commentary).
I trust your heart was instructed by the deep probe of last month’s blog referring to 1 John 3:11-24 — God’s emphasis of hatred being murder (v.15). Someone has said, “A moment’s reflection will show that it is murder in embryo.” That does not remove the sting of sin, does it?
Hatred is a serious sin that must be confessed and dealt with as we submit to the Holy Spirit’s work.
In contrast, we must sit at Jesus’ feet as He educates us about love. A lawyer, impressed by Jesus’ answers to questioners and desiring to justify himself asked, “Who is my neighbor?” (Luke 10: 29). In answer to his pride, Jesus used a parable, which in essence declared that anyone in need is your neighbor. The home is a place where needy and sinful people live! Yes, even a Christian home! We need to face up to the fact that sinful people live within the walls of a Christian home. Saved but imperfect people live there; and they hurt, disappoint, and even fail each other.
Certainly, children are a woman’s closest neighbors, next to her husband. Let’s look at this fact as it refers to child rearing. Instead of being shocked, a lot of unnecessary parental grief can be erased when she realizes that sin lurks within her offspring. Therefore, there is no reason for inappropriate discipline fired by excessive anger. Once parents admit to the fact of original sin — a fact and not a theory — they are ready to deal with it in an appropriate (Biblical) manner. Yes, they must spend time in fervent prayer, hours searching the Word for answers, and imploring and following the Holy Spirit’s instruction.
January 1, 2016, we will celebrate 45 years of the blending of our families. The evening I walked down the isle on the arm of my 16-year-old son Dan, to be given in marriage to Dr. John C. Whitcomb, their ages were 10, 12, 13, 14, 15, and 16. His four and my two represented extremely different backgrounds — environment, lifestyle, schooling, activities, and experiences. I had been a missionary with my first husband. Dr. Whitcomb was a seminary professor. That tells you a lot. (Our mates are with the Lord). Eight sin natures required high- tension adjustments. God was with us and His grace was super abundantly evident. There were restrictions and penalties. Not always appreciated, but God’s Word instructed us to do so. We are the first to admit that we made mistakes. We would like to do it over. Good relationships between sinful parents and children do not develop naturally. They require much effort.
God has all the answers in His Book. He has promised to be a very available help in time of need. He answers fervent, believing prayer. He promises, “Call upon me and I will.” Do it His way. Don’t give up. Believe Him. Trust Him. He will work.