Saturday, April 19, 2008

The Excellent Wife, Ch 4

A Wife's Understanding of Relationships

I was tempted to not be totally honest about my reaction to this chapter, but in Article 1A of my blog agreement it states "In all things be truthful".

So, the truth? The first time I read this chapter I bristled. Maybe I'd gotten too little sleep that night or maybe its just because I'm selfish by nature. At any rate, after finishing the chapter, I put the book down and asked the Holy Spirit to deal with my heart and my selfish thoughts. Fast-forward five days and while re-reading the chapter, sure enough, there were no defensive thoughts, just thoughts of wanting to do better, wanting to be pleasing to God.

"In order to be perfected in unity, you must stop asking yourself questions like 'what will it do for me?' or 'what will I get out of it?' or 'how will it meet my desires (needs)?' Instead, ask yourself 'how can we glorify God?' or 'how can we walk in a pleasing manner with God enjoying him as we go?' Let your ambition be like Paul's which was 'to be pleasing to Him' (2 Corinthians 5:9). In fact, Paul felt so strongly about pleasing God that he described his entire purpose in life with the words 'to live is Christ...' (Philippians 1:21).

I'm once again reminded that it's not about me! "It is easy to live for yourself, but ultimately unfulfilling and empty".

"In order to be like Christ, you must think as well as act like Christ. To accomplish this goal, our motivation must change from 'what can I get out of this?' to 'what can I give?' (1 Corinthians 13:5; Philippians 2:2-3) Hence you should expect no thanks or recognition. You are just doing your minimal duty to God."

I wanted to make a list of scenarios and circumstances when these truths would not have to apply...extend my list of buts if you will (see Chapter 1), but once again, I am without excuse.

I truly want the motivation in my relationship with my husband to be for God's glory, not for mine and I'm thankful the Holy Spirit is there to remind me of God's plan...daily.

If you haven't yet joined us, I encourage you to grab the book and come with us. This is the first book discussion I've been a part of outside of the classroom and its been edifying and useful. At least visit Lux Venit to read insightful thoughts and comments.


Tristin said...

Great blog, I love reading what other women of faith have to say. Sounds like a good book, I may have to look into it. I am trying to replace most of my secular literature with holier reading...

Lisa writes... said...

Ouch, indeed. I'm thinking this next chapter is yet another tool of sanctification, if you know what I mean!