From the Pulpit: Holiness can be made in the home too

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, September 26, 2006

I am not a great cook &045; but I can make a few things!

For instance, I can scramble an egg.

I can make coffee.

I have been known to make spaghetti, and I can cook a mean burger on the grill! And most folks &045; if they have a pretty good recipe &045; can whip up something in the kitchen.

Actually, lots of items can be made or produced in our homes.

We may not have as much time to prepare food or work on other items, but it is possible to make homemade goodies. What about homemade hotliness? Richard Foster &045; the popular theologian and writer &045; says that as we pray as a family, we learn that holiness is homemade.

Foster knows how hard it is for many families to spend a great deal of time together, so he calls for family meal times to be opportunities for celebration of events in the family&8217;s life and for sharing of concerns and needs.

And in the Scripture, Ephesians 5: 21 &045; 6:3, we get a glimpse at how families can create an atomsphere for healthy spirtuality. One of the first things we see is the importance of giving yourself over to each other as reverence for God.

That hits our ears strangely, doesn&8217;t it? After all, the whole notion of giving yourself over to another is almost like from another planet!

We human beings living in the 21st century are almost totally focused on ourselves, not others. Even in the best of families, there is a great deal of self-absorbtion. Notice that the Ephesians text has as its beginning point the notion of being &8220;subject to one another out of reverence for Christ.&8221; And those last five words are the key words for us &045; &8220;out of reverence for Christ.&8221; In fact, I want to suggest that the only way we can give ourselves over to each other is with the help of God!

You can determine that you will &8220;turn over a new leaf,&8221; and begin to yield yourself to your spouse and your children and cooperate with them and work with them to improve your family life.

However, unless you have the strength of God, you will fall short every time.

Do you recall that verse from Psalm 127 &045; &8220;Unless the Lord build the house, they labor in vain that build it&8230;&8221; (Ps. 127:1). That&8217;s what I am talking about &045; in our developing the kind of spiritual atmosphere in our homes that we want, it will require our yielding ourselves to each other, and the only way we can yield ourselves authentically to each other is with God working in us!

When I talk about a spiritual atmosphere in our homes, don&8217;t misunderstand what I&8217;m saying.

I am not suggesting that we are to walk around speaking in King James Version English. I am not suggesting any sort of perfection in our families.

But we are to love each other without regard for what we&8217;re going to get out of it.

Dr. Ron Grizzle is the pastor of Riverchase Baptist Church.