|Why do we find so difficult to honour one another?|
Are we helping to unify the body of Christ, the church? And pray for other Christians, avoid gossip, build others up, work together in humility, give your time and money, exalt Christ , and refuse to get sidetracked arguing over divisive matters. Let us therefore be unified as a powerful witness to the reality of God’s love.
God's desire, and the PRIORITY on the heart of Jesus, is that He will have a people whose love for one another and attitude of servant hood will be such a witness to this world that men and women will be crying out to know our Lord. They will want to know the secret of our peace, our joy and our harmony. They will watch our marriages, our homes, our children and our work places, not to criticize but to know our secret.
Having urged his readers to be filled with the Spirit, and expressing one evidence of being so filled, as being subject to one another in the fear of Christ, Paul gives examples of how this should be in our relationships.
Christian marriage (Ephesians 5:22-33)
If Christian marriages were what they are supposed to be, with both parties Spirit filled and submitted to one another, honoring and preferring the other, they would be the mystery revealed to a watching world. Men would see the relationship that Jesus has with His bride, the church, and would be drawn to know Him as the foundation for their marriage also. There would be a steady path of seekers coming to our home, or church door, rather than rushing, as they now do, to the divorce courts! Women would want to honour their own husband above all other men, because of the love they receive and men would want to love their wives, because of the honour they receive. Rather than a vicious circle of abuse and retaliation so common in the world, there would be a delicious circle of blessing one another in Christ.
The Christian home (Ephesians 6: 1-4)
Where parents are in right relationship with the Lord and with one another, their children mature in a secure, loving home. Most of the counseling I do as a pastor has to do with wounds received by children growing up in a rather different situation, though often "Christian". Fathers fail to disciple (or discipline) their children and, instead, provoke them to anger. Christian counselors today, speak of dysfunctional families where the child's "love tank" is not filled with the love it was created to receive -because the dysfunctional parents are incapable of providing that love.
How tragic it is that so many badly behaved children are the product of "Christian" homes. What kind of witness is that?
The workplace (Ephesians 6:5-9)
The Spirit-filled believer is called to be a witness in his workplace by displaying the attitude of a servant before his co-workers and employers.
A believer should be trustworthy to do his work well. I am familiar with a teacher whose school was to be amalgamated with two others in a major reorganization. All the teachers from the three schools gathered together to form a Staff Association to speak on the teachers behalf to the School Governors, concerning their desires for the design of the new school buildings and their terms of employment. One man was nominated and seconded for the position of President for this new association. Another was nominated and seconded. Then, much to his surprise, my friend was nominated. Immediately, the two others who had been nominated withdrew their names in order to second my friend's nomination. No other names were presented and he was elected unanimously to represent all the staff. As he left the room he expressed amazement to a colleague. "Just wait till I tell my wife,' he said.”She'll never believe me!" "Why not?" replied the colleague. "We all know you're the only one we can trust to always speak the truth!" My friend was the only Christian on the senior staff of those schools.
Sadly, I am often told by business men (Christians among them) that the worst people with whom to do business are Christian believers. They want the most out of you for the least payment. They are the poorest at giving tips and often the last in settling debts! Of course, it may well be that we are judged more harshly by the world than nonbelievers are, but that is to be expected! We are called to have the attitude of servants. We should be living at a higher level of commitment and workmanship than the world! Sadly, we all know of Christian employers and workers who do not display a Spirit-filled work ethic or relationship with their colleagues. What kind of witness is that?
Most relevant research reveals that the number one reason for missionaries to leave the field is poor interpersonal relationships!
They have studied for many years in the Bible Schools and language seminaries, have interned in home churches , have invested a large portion of their lives in preparation and, after one term overseas, have returned home, bitter, disillusioned, embarrassed and hurt. This ought not to be!
Have you ever been involved in a church fight? It is not a pleasant thing! I know of one church, once over three hundred people, now nonexistent. Everyone in that town seems to know some aspect of the story, and there are many people, once faithful in attendance, who says that they will never attend a church again! The wounds are as real as the fighting was bitter. The gunshots as believers assassinated one another reverberated all around the town. Satan gloated -and the Lord wept!
Be very sure of this! If it is the Lord’s priority to have people in right relationship to one another in obedience to His Word, it certainly is Satan’s priority to mar such relationships!
-Courtesy, The Key in My hand, Mentors guide