Friday, March 18th, 2016
Parent Traps (Part 28)
Thwarted: By Grown-Up Men
He gave some as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ; until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ. As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming.
Ephesians 4:11-14 (NASB)
Man up!... is a frequent callout from my son-in-law, Adam (AMTC's chief). Maybe I'm out of line to discuss it, except Christian women want the same thing. If God ordered men of faith to lead us, then maturity is mandatory.
Undeniably, a war is at hand. The real fight's not with parents and children, husbands and wives, or neighbor to neighbor. It's not inter-denominational. Nor is it Christians versus Hollywood, other faiths, atheists or naysayers. It's specifically spiritual, as in believers against the devil.
Didn't God's Captain already win it? Yes! But Jesus left us a clean-up job: keeping the enemy under our feet while spreading Good News all over the world. Yet to keep Satan's team pinned beneath us requires warriors who are well-seasoned.
This mission of turning sanctified boys into fighting men was part of Paul's call:
'Brethren, do not be children in your thinking' (1 Corinthians 14:20). 'When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things' (1 Corinthians 13:11). 'Therefore leaving the elementary teaching about the Christ, let us press on to maturity' (Hebrews 6:1).
Actors, models and talent for Christ: Consider a few sobering thoughts:
1) Men of God: You're destined to shepherd your brethren and families in Christ, while introducing the world to Christ. At the same time, you're called to battle 'The prince of the power of the air' (Ephesians 2:2).
2) Women of God: You're destined to help the husbands and fathers in your life, while reinforcing their faith in Christ. At the same time, you're called to submit in ultimate strength, which is Christ-like.*
3) Children of God: You're destined to honor your parents always and to be subject to them until your legal majority. At the same time, you're called to lead your generation with unusual maturity.
To Be Continued...
* As the daughter of a strong business woman (before many women were), who was a civil rights leader (when most Southerners weren't), I grew up with these same values. Now a believer, I have the politically incorrect view that (if possible) women should be under the covering of a man: Jesus first, and your head of household second.
I also realize some women (as illustrated in the Bible by ladies like Deborah, the judge) are called to roles of authority. Others are forced into leadership by widowhood, absentee husbands, non-believing husbands or other solo positions. If your opinion differs from my post-feminism view, I understand and respect your freedom of choice.
To Be Continued...
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Parent Traps series.