Kathie’s Ephesus Dig: Ephesians 5:21-33

LOVING, SPIRIT-GUIDED RELATIONSHIPS

As a teenager in the 1960s, the thought of “submitting” to a husband ruffled my feathers. Wasn’t I a person in my own right? Don’t I have a mind of my own? Why should I have to ask his permission? I was stuck on the word “submit” as it was understood in the 1960s women’s movement. I didn’t have a picture of the kind of marriage Paul was talking about here, a partnership in which, because you cherish each other, you support and look out for each other. It’s not a balance sheet where input matches output. Both partners are more concerned with supporting each other than keeping score.

CHRISTTHE CHURCHHUSBANDSWIVES
Courteous reverence & support for church (21) Courteous reverence & support for Christ (21) Courteous reverence & support for wives (21) Courteous reverence & support for husbands (21)
Christ loves, provides for the church’s needs, & give salvations (22( Look for & be devoted to Christ’s leadership (22)Love, cherish, & care for your wives, even to giving up your life. A love marked by giving, not getting (23, 25)Understand, respect, and support (submit to) your husband (22,24); devotion
Christ’s love makes the church beautiful, brings out her best, leads to purity & radiance (25-28)The church is the body with Christ as its head. They are on in purpose & love (25-28)Husband & wife are “one,” so by loving & cherishing his wife he is loving himself also (25-31) as God loves us.Husband & wife are to bring out the best in each other as they are one in marriage (25-31) as God loves us.
1 + 1 = 2 = 1
How this works is a mystery
1 + 1 = 2 = 1
How this works is a mystery
Be in unity: Love yourself by loving your wife as Christ loves the church (33) Be in unity: Love yourself by loving your husband as Christ loves (33)

My thoughts: Marriage is a partnership in which, because you cherish each other, you support and look out for each other. Both partners are more concerned with supporting each other than keeping score, and there is not balance sheet that make sure input equals output on a daily basis. Sometimes one is the major contributor supporting a needy partner, and the next day the roles might reverse. But you are both working for the good of the whole. 1 + 1 = 2 = 1

God has a design for marriage, and it doesn’t follow long-standing cultural standards. We are to follow God’s plan, and only in that way can be resist moral decline and begin to build a solid foundation. His design is for our good.

Pray with me. Heavenly Father, thank you for your design and your example of how to love. Help us, Holy Spirit, to live each in this mysterious equation where 1 + 1 = 2 = 1. We cannot do it without your Spirit flowing through us. Amen

Today’s song is about love: Burlap to Cashmere, singing “Love Reclaims the Atmosphere.”

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