THE LIVING WORD TRANSCRIPT
Program Air Date - 4-14-02
LESSON TITLE: THE CHRISTIAN HOME: "WHERE DO I FIT INTO THE HOME?"
Good morning! Thank you for joining us today for God's Living Word. I hope everyone had a great week. And I hope you are ready to begin this new week with a day of service and offering to your God.
As always, it is our commitment through this program to proclaim the simple truth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ - which is confirmed for us in the Bible. I hope you all have your Bible's handy and I hope you are ready to worship God together as we sing praises to His name and study from His wondrous word. Now let's begin by talking to our Father in prayer!
Ladies, this Saturday will be the special Ladies Day beginning 8:30 a.m., at our building located at 2540 N. Kansas Expressway in Springfield, Missouri. We hope you are making plans to be a part of this time of growth in the things of God. The theme of the day is, "My Cup Runneth Over," presented by Rebecca Jorgensen. We hope you will present.
Let me also remind you that today at 2:00, we will begin our taping of songs for this program at the Kansas Expressway Church of Christ building. We hope you are planning to be with us for this time of service to God. What better way to worship God than to sing His praises and to do so in a way which will be beneficial on this program for years to come. Hope to see you this afternoon!
We want to begin our songs of praise this morning by singing a hymn which reminds us that we can always lean on Jesus Christ our Lord. How wonderful it is to know that our Savior is always there for us, no matter what we may need. So, at this time won't you join in with the congregation as we together sing, "Leaning on the Everlasting Arms."
(SONG # 1)
Well, spring is finally here. How lovely it is to see the many trees and flowers beginning to bloom. New leaves and magnificent flowers are already beginning to show themselves all around this area. What a beautiful creation this world is and what a blessing it is from God.
Isn't it wonderful to finally be able to get out of our houses and enjoy the warm weather! It seems like we have been cooped up for months, but now it's time for things that are new and for new beginnings. However, with this newness comes a lot of work: yards to be kept, gardens to be prepared, flowers to be cared for. If you're like me though, many of these things are enjoyable and some of the true pleasures in this life.
The Bible talks a lot about growing things and harvesting. In fact, many of the greatest parables and illustrations in the Bible, use stories which refer to the process of preparing, planting, growing and cultivating some type of harvest.
One of the most familiar verses in the Bible along these lines is found in 2 Corinthians 9:6, there it says, "but this I say: he who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully." Earlier in the text, Paul had been boasting to the Macedonians and others about how generous the Corinthians were in giving and helping others. So he sent some others before his arrival to make sure they would be prepared to help again - so that his boasting would not be in vain. Thus, Paul reminds them that those who give sparingly will also get sparingly and those who give bountifully will also get bountifully.
Isn't this the attitude that God wants us to have of being good givers! In the next verse, 7, of the same opening, Paul adds this, "so let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver." God truly loves a cheerful giver.
Another great verse which helps us to understand the importance of proper giving is found in Luke 6:38, there we read, "give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you." Have you figured it out yet? It's better to give than to receive, because the more you give and do for God the more you will receive from Him.
Let's all try to be better givers for the Lord's sake. Whether it is giving of time, effort, or money; let's give God our best, not the leftovers. Keeping in mind that we are blessed by God, according to what we give to Him and others!
This morning we have a guest speaker with us who is one of our deacons at the Kansas Expressway Church of Christ. We are happy to have brother Mark McCarty with us today as we continue our series of study which is helping us to know more about "The Christian Home." Our specific topic of study today will answer the question "Where do I fit into the Home?" So, please continue with us this morning, and after our next song together brother Mark will return with this study from God's Word. The name of our next hymn, "Nothing but the Blood!"
(SONG # 2)
Speaker: Mark McCarty
In Genesis chapter 2 beginning in verse 7, we find these words. "And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and man became a living being." In verse 18, the Lord God said, "It is not good that man should be alone. I will make him a helper comparable to him." In verse 22, the Lord God took a rib from the man and made it into a woman and He brought her to be with the man." In verse 24, "Therefore, a man should leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife and they shall become one flesh." In the third chapter of the book of Genesis in verse 20, "And he called his wife's name 'Eve' because she was the mother of all living." In Genesis 4, verses 1 and 2, "Now Adam knew Eve, his wife, and she conceived and bore Cain." In verse 2, she bore again. This time, his brother Abel.
Here in the book of Genesis, we find the first family and the first home. We see the inception of the marital family relationship. One man, one woman joined together in one flesh, united in the sacred, God-breathed institution. Husbands and fathers. Wives and mothers. Children. God Himself created. He designed the family. He had a plan, a divine plan. A plan in which He intended for the family to be a very special and secure place, a place in which He Himself desires to abide within. A place in which He has planned Himself to be a part of. You might ask, "Well, Mark, if God Himself has this wonderful plan for the family and the home and if He desires so much to be a part of it, why do we see so many problems in the family of today? Why are our children being starved, neglected, molested and even abused? Why are wives and mothers being degraded and even beaten? Why the rise in domestic violence? What about the children, Mark, that cry themselves to sleep at night because they don't understand why mom or dad are no longer there to tuck them in? What about the young mother left to raise her children when dad decides that he doesn't want to be a dad any longer? What about the father who is left to care for his children when mom decides that she needs something different? What about the grandparents, Mark, whose hearts break at the sight of their children and their grandchildren suffering? What about the broken homes? What about the broken hearts, the broken dreams, the broken husbands and fathers, the broken wives and mothers? What about the children? What about the fear and the terror and the trials of a broken family? Where is God? Where is He to be found in all of this chaos and this turmoil, and all of the insecurity and the abuse? Where is God?
Let me suggest to you this morning that God is where He has always been. The apostle Paul tells us in Acts chapter 17, beginning in verse 27 that we should seek the Lord. "He that is God is not far from each one of us, for in Him we live and move and have our being."
I tell you this morning that God cares. He always has cared and He will continue to care. His heart aches at the sight of a broken home, an abused child, a tortured mother. The problem isn't that God has somehow deserted his plan for the home and thereby left the family to fend for itself and leaving many families in shambles. The problem many times lies within us. It has nothing to do with God. It's within our own hearts and own minds.
Now please listen to me. I don't want you to leave here this morning saying, "Well, Mark said that the situation that I am in is my fault and I am to blame." I'm not suggesting for a moment that if you find yourself this morning or if you ever have been a victim of divorce or abuse or domestic violence, I'm not telling you that that's your fault. That's not what I am saying. And I am not even suggesting that there are any easy solutions or cures for the problems and the trials that you or your family may be facing at this moment. But I do know this. If every husband and wife, every father and mother, every child, if we all knew and we understood up front that God has a plan for the family and within that plan He has designated, He has assigned very specific individual roles and responsibilities of which if we as members of the family will strive daily to follow and to fulfill these responsibilities, many of the problems that our families are facing today would disappear. And at the same time, God Himself would have a greater presence in the daily lives of each member of the family unit. I believe this with all my heart.
So the question becomes "Where do I fit in? What is my role as a husband, and a father, a wife or a mother, as a child within the family? Where do I fit in to the home?"
1.) To all those potential husbands and wives, God wants you to know that marriage is
for life. So the first role and responsibility is to understand and to commit ourselves
to a lifelong relationship, for better or for worse, in sickness and in health, until death do we part. In Mark chapter 10 and verse 9, we find "what God has joined together let not man separate." Marriage is a holy relationship between a man, a woman and God. Our marital relationship, please listen to me. Our marital relationship is a direct reflection of our relationship with God. We need to understand this. We need to start right now teaching our children that God intended for marriage to be for life. It's not a computer game that we can turn on when we feel like playing and turn off when we are tired of it. It's not fancy weddings and dresses and punch bowls and beautiful cakes. It's not eloping in the night. It's not heavenly bliss 24 hours a day. We must once again be a people who give the marriage relationship the proper thoughts and respect that it deserves. It's a lifetime commitment. It's not a free pass to get out from underneath mom or dad's roof. It isn't simply a license for approved sex. It's not a game. And contrary to popular belief, it's not done on a trial basis with a money-back guarantee. When we make our vows to love and to cherish, for better or for worse, in sickness and in health, until death do we part, we not only make these vows to one another, but we also make them to God and He will hold us responsible.
2.) To the husbands and fathers that may be watching this morning and ask, "Where do I fit in?" In Ephesians chapter 5, beginning in verse 23, we find that "the husband is head of the wife or the head of the home." Husbands are to love their wives," verse 25, "just as Christ loved the church. Husbands are to nourish and to cherish them." "Husbands," we're told in 1 Timothy 5 and verse 8, "are to provide for their families. They are to train their children up in the Lord." Husbands and fathers, it is our God-given responsibility to be the leader in our home. Physically, spiritually, financially. I'm talking about husbands and fathers fulfilling their God-given roles and responsibilities as they lead their wives, their children in love, in word and in action. Let us love our wives and children. Let us support and encourage our families. Let us once again be the spiritual leaders in our home as God planned it.
3.) To those wives and mothers who may be watching this morning and asking "Where do I fit in?" In Proverbs chapter 31, beginning in verse 10, we find these words. "Who can find a virtuous wife for her worth is far above rubies. The heart of her husband safely trusts her. She does him good and not evil. She willingly works with her hands. She provides food for her household. She extends her hand to the poor. Yes, she reaches out her hands to the needy. Strength and honor are her clothing. She opens her mouth with wisdom and her tongue is the law of kindness. She watches over the ways of her household. Her children rise up and call her blessed. Her husband also, and he praises her. Charm is deceitful and beauty is passing, but a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised." While the husband may be the head of the home, I believe it to be the wife who is the heart and the soul, the central nervous system, if you will, of the family. As a wife and a mother, God has blessed you with a very unique, a very special place in the home, a place that cannot be duplicated nor filled by a man, a place of great importance. You have been given the unique opportunity to influence, to form and fashion not only the leaders of today in your husbands, but the leaders of tomorrow in your children. The home will never be home unless you as a woman and a wife and a mother are willing to accept and fulfill this very special place, this very honorable place and responsibility within your family.
4.) Children, Exodus 20 and verse 12 simply says, "Honor your father and mother all the days of your life." Children, love your parents. Love your siblings. Obey and respect them. To those children this morning who are fortunate enough to have parents who provide food for the table and shelter from the elements and parents who provide clothing and care and nurturing, take the time to thank them. Appreciate them for what they do.
As I draw to a close this morning and we are about out of time, I do want first to invite you back in the weeks to come for there will be further specific lessons concerning the family and the roles that each of us should strive to fulfill within the family unit. To those husbands and fathers this morning, let us go forth this week being the leaders that God intended for us to be. To the wives and mothers, let us forth this week being the heart and the soul of our family. To the children, let us respect our parents and let us be mindful of our special place in the family. And as I've already said, if you have good parents, thank them and appreciate that. By all means, let us remember that God is not far from each of us for in Him we live and we move and we have our very being. Let us also remember that God has a plan for the family.
(SONG # 3 - "Take My Life, And Let It Be!")
What a wondrous time we have had together in participating in the things of God. I hope we all have been encouraged through our time spent together. Please remember, you are invited to join us every Sunday morning at 7:30, as we commit ourselves to this service of God.
Now let me ask if you have any questions or comments about today's lesson? Maybe, you would like a free transcript or a free cassette tape of this program? Possibly, we could assist you with free Bible materials or free Bible correspondence courses? No matter what your need is, please contact us at the following address:
The Living Word
2540 N. Kansas Expressway
Springfield, Mo. 65803
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May we each find out where we fit into the Christian home and then may we accept our God given responsibility to fulfill that function as God has said.