Easter - 2018

Monday, October 20, 2014

Love calls for Sacrifice!

When we get all dressed up to attend a wedding, we put on our very best clothes and behavior because we are going to take part in a sacred act. A man and a woman are going to give their lives to each other for as long as they live, and we have the honor to stand with them and witness their solemn, sacred pledge to each other. They are going to make a covenant, a holy and irrevocable vow, to be one, to own all things in common, and to love and care for one another for the rest of their lives. It takes a sacrifice in all relationships . . . especially marriage.

Sacrifice… “A surrendering of some possession (action, feeling, or emotion) as an offering to God.” Sacrifice is the freely giving up of oneself for the benefit of the other.

Throughout the Scripture, the shedding of blood was required for a covenant to be in effect. The covenant is a contract or agreement between two or more parties.  Covenant is how God has chosen to communicate to us, to redeem us, and to guarantee us eternal life in Jesus. It involved the shedding of Jesus’ blood on the cross. In a marriage, the covenant was fulfilled when the husband and wife consummated their marriage and shed their uniqueness for the purpose of becoming one. The act of binding each other was and is a shedding of ones person so as to grow in the relationship as a unifying of the heart, body, soul, and mind. To a lessor degree…this is true of all good and lasting relationships. 

Before Karen and I head off to bed at night, we sneak into the children’s room to check on them and see them sleeping - little soft cheeks lying there on the pillow as peaceful as can be, I get a tremendous sense of love and thankfulness that God has given me these creatures. Sometimes I catch myself gently patting their heads or rubbing their cheeks and appreciating the soft touch of fresh skin. Do I love them? Yes. But five hours earlier, when those seemingly angelic creatures are running around, fighting, yelling, demanding - “I want milk, I need go potty,” and complaining, “why do we have to . . .” my love for them wanes. When this love calls on me to wipe bottoms and wash hair and put on clothes, my love is put to the test. Talk is cheap. Actions are difficult.

The fact of the matter is that love is not always fun or easy. It especially depends on what the object of your love is. It’s easy to love your recliner. All it does is sit there and give you a place to rest. You don’t have to talk to it. You rarely have to clean it. All you do is sit on it. It’s easy to love your television. It talks to you. It keeps you entertained. It becomes more difficult when you have to clean it, move it, and pay for it. Children are more difficult, because they are sinfully selfish. Pets are more difficult, because they don’t always listen. Bosses are not easy to love, because they can be rude and very demanding. Neighbors can be difficult to love - because they can be loud and obnoxious. 

Jesus said in John 15:13-14, “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command.”

Do you stall coming home from work because you have a hard time loving your wife? Do you look for excuses as to why you can’t spend time with your kids, because it takes work to love them? Do you do your best to avoid phone calls from certain people because you have a hard time loving them?

Think About it...You know I love ya, Don

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