Thursday, June 30, 2011

A Titus 2 Woman

If you have been around me for any length of time, you may have heard me say the phrase “A Titus 2 Woman.”  I have always held this passage near and dear to my heart as it describes what the relationships between both the men and the women in the church should look like.

Recently, I read the book Feminine Appeal: Seven Virtues of a Godly Wife and Mother. If you are a woman, you should read this book (even if you are not a wife or mother).  Carol Mahaney does a fantastic job explaining the seven virtues listed in Titus 2 and applying them to women today. Girls, this is a book that will l make you uncomfortable and cause you to question your Americanized way of thinking, but it will also challenge you to be a more Godly woman.
I encourage you to read for yourself these few versus in Titus. But, before you do, I beg you to put down your rose-tinted glasses. Set aside all you preconceived notions about what an “American” wife and mother looks like. As you read, pray for God’s grace in your life that you may exemplify and teach other women these attributes.
Titus 2:3-5
"Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled."
Girls, this is how we are to live out the gospel.  Notice, pursuing a great career is not on the list. Neither is attaining the perfect figure. Our lives are to be oriented around our husbands, children, and home.  This is God’s design. But, it makes us uncomfortable because we have allowed the views of our feminist culture to skew our thinking. Our skewed thinking causes us to pervert or ignore the Word of God. Our skewed thinking causes us to justify our lack of submissiveness and rationalize the other areas we don’t measure up.
For this, I must repent. I am guilty. I have listened to our culture's view of femininity over the Biblical view. I pray that the Holy Spirit would, through me, shine the Gospel as He conforms me to the Titus 2 virtues. I pray that we will spur one another on to be the women God has called us to be.  I pray that you would join me in standing up for Biblical womanhood.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Grace Overcomes

A few weeks ago, Stephen and I made the 10+ hour trip back to our “home-town” to spend some time with family. In addition to seeing family and friends, I got to meet my nephew, Calvin, who was only a week old at the time.
Several of you knew that this was going to be a sweet, but possibly difficult experience and offered up prayers for me.  I write this blog to tell you, “THANK YOU.”
Calvin was the first newborn I held since our miscarriage.  I was scared. I was scared that all my sinful emotions would come bubbling to the top, and I would enter into “pity-party mode.”  Jealousy, pity, anger, and resentment were just a few of the sinful emotions I knew lurked inside my heart.  Knowing this, I repented and prayed. Thankfully, I also had many people interceding on my behalf.
When I held that baby boy, by the sheer grace of God all I felt was love. That’s it - just an amazing, overwhelming and unexplainable love. It was absolutely nothing I can boast in; it was 100% a work of God.
Thank you, Lord, for your grace. I absolutely don’t deserve it.
Friend, know this, the grace of God can overcome anything.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The Answer is Grace

“Why do bad things happen to good people?”
I have heard this question asked in so many forms, by so many people. For two years, I consistently shared the gospel with someone, who during each discussion always reverted back to this question. This question was, for him, a stumbling block to faith. I have heard people who face death, divorce, infertility, job loss, and countless other situations ask similar questions.
It almost seems that no matter how hard we search, we rarely find a satisfying answer to this question. I submit to you the notion that we are asking the wrong question. Perhaps, in our sinfulness, we don’t have the right perspective.  So, what perspective should we have? There is no other place to look but God’s Holy Word.
Romans 3:9-10 & 18. "I have already charged that all men, both Jews and Greeks, are under the power of sin, as it is written: None is righteous, no not one; no one seeks for God....There is no fear of God before their eyes."
Romans 14:23  "Whatever is not from faith is sin."
Romans 7:18  "I know that no good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh."
Romans 8:7-8 "For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God's law, indeed it cannot; and those who are in the flesh cannot please God."
What do these verses tell us? We are sinful. We cannot please God apart from the Spirit of God. All that we think and feel apart from God’s spirit is NOT good. Not one person is good. Humanity is in complete and total rebellion against God.
I understand this may make you uneasy. Yet, this is scripture. This type of thinking is not popular today; however, we can’t ignore or sugar-coat this because it makes us uncomfortable. It is dangerous to minimize our sinfulness. Minimizing our sinfulness minimizes the death of Christ.
The truth is that we are corrupt, wicked people. As such, there is only one thing we deserve: death and eternal separation from God.
So, the question, “Why do bad things happen to good people?” is a faulty question because it assumes (1) that there are “good” people and it (2) that we deserve good things from God for that “goodness.”
So, instead of, “Why do bad things happen to good people?” we should ask, “Why do good things happen to bad people?” The answer is grace.