Wednesday, August 20, 2008

R-E-S-P-E-C-T, Find Out What It Means to Me!

I've done a lot of weddings over the years, but as I prepared to give a meditation in my son's recent wedding, I saw something that I had never seen before.
In Ephesians 5, one of the challenges given to the bride is to "respect" her husband. What does that mean?
The definition that most of us are aware of has to do with admiring or having esteem for someone. But what about the literal definition?

The Latin root of respect means to look and to look back again.

Think about that. . .the same Latin root is in our word: spectacles (eyeglasses). Wives have a major responsibility to watch and keep watching their husbands. What should they see? They should see a husband who loves his wife just as Christ loves the church.

Who you think the husband then has to be watching over and over again?

Wow! Respect is huge in marriage! Where is Aretha when you need her?

Oh (sock it to me, sock it to me, sock it to me, sock it to me)
A little respect (sock it to me, sock it to me, sock it to me, sock it to me)
Whoa, babe (just a little bit) A little respect (just a little bit)

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

"Jacob, it's in you!"

I think it was the best wedding I have ever been to. I'm probably not objective. I officiated as pastor, and it was my son's wedding. OK, I'm definitely not objective.
Lena, the bride, was sweet, holy and radiant. The crowd was reverent and engaged. The worship was powerful. Jake's grandfathers (both pastors) had authority in their prayers. The vows were heartfelt.
My meditation focused on Paul's words to husbands and wives from Ephesians. When I got to the charge for husbands to love their wives as Christ loved the church, I looked right into my boy's eyes and reminded him of this: "Jacob, it's in you."
When he was young his favorite movie was Kevin Costner's "Robin Hood." I'm sure he loved all of the swashbuckling action. But do you know what his favorite part of the VHS movie was? This was the part that he would fast forward to or rewind to watch again and again. . .
He loved the Bryan Adams video of the song "Everything I do, I do it for you" that came at the end of the film. Still today, he says that it's his favorite song.
What an awesome, sovereign God! I believe that as a boy, God was putting within Jacob an understanding of the kind of love that He had for him and the kind of love a man is to have for his wife. Some of the lyrics to that song are:
Take me as I am take my life
I would give it all I would sacrifice
Don't tell me it's not worth fightin' for
I can't help it there's nothin' I want more
Ya know it's true
Everything I do, I do it for you
Over and over again, while Jacob was young, he encountered through that video the kind of love that Jesus has for those who believe. A love that was willing to give His life for the one that He loves.
Is an understanding of that kind of love in you?

Under the Fountain

Here's a quote from D. L. Moody:
"A great many think that because they have been filled once they are going to be full for all time. But oh, we are leaky vessels! We have to be kept right under the fountain all the time in order to stay full. What we need is a fresh supply, a fresh anointing, fresh power. And if we seek it, and seek it with all our hearts, we will obtain it.”
Have you positioned yourself so that you are continually receiving from the Holy Spirit? A past experience with Him is not enough. As Moody put it, we are leaky vessels! You receive from the Holy Spirit in a number of ways: prayer, worship, scripture, service, fasting, tithing. . .
But the most amazing way to receive is simply to ASK. If earthly fathers know how to give good gifts to their children, HOW MUCH MORE will the Heavenly Father give His Holy Spirit to His children who ASK! (Luke 11:13)