Last night at small group, we continued our study of Phillipians and at one point we were talking about shining God's light wherever he puts you...whether that be at a job that you like (or one that you don't like) or at home raising children or in chains as Paul was - and to see the possibilities God has for you where you are. Well, that led me to thinking (and sharing a bit) about a sermon I read a few years ago that really hit my heart right where I was at, so I dug back in my archives today to give it a re-read:
Whew! I just finished reading Pastor Dean's message from this weekend. Because Les & I were away, we missed it. But so many people have been saying good things about it, I had to go and read it, and it was GOOD! He was talking about marriage, and he started out by using Deut. 6 to explain that God's main plan to pass on His love, hope and grace to the world is through families. The thing that Dean said that really spoke to my heart the most though was this:
"Now folks, I want to be the 1st to tell you that, if you're married, the very best way you can help shine God's light on this earth, . . . is to have a strong marriage . . . the way to honor God the very most with your life, and the way you can get the most work done for God is this . . . by simply giving yourself fully to strengthening and developing your marriage over a lifetime because if your married . . . strengthening your marriage and family is what God has called you to do you don't even need to spend time looking for something else to do for God . . . until your marriage is strong and your family is growing spiritually . . . that's the work God has called you to do, and it is a huge responsibility and high calling . . . it is the centre piece for his strategy of saving the world!!
Got that - your marriage is not something that can take a back seat to anything - it must always be of the highest
priority . . . because working on your marriage is working on something for God
. . . and that is a really big deal . . . "
Dean's words were very affirming to me! You see, since I've been married I haven't been able to be involved in 'formal ministry' at the Church as much as I used to. There were times before when I would be at the Church or doing something for the Church almost every evening, but that is not possible now with a husband and daughter. Sometimes I feel inadequate because I can't do all the things I've done before, but I know that God has called me to make my husband a priority and our family. I know without a doubt that God created me to be Les' wife, and so the primary ministry God has called me to is Les and our children, and it is so encouraging to hear that affirmed by my Pastor:)