God’s Ideal Plan for the Family God’s desire is that all creation would come to know God and be his disciples. (Matt. 28) A man and woman leave father and mother and become one flesh (Gen. 2). Eph 5 – Husband head over wife. Husband loves wife – Wife submits/respects her husband. Wife is a helpmeet. Children brought up in the discipline and admonition of the Lord (Eph. 6). Children taught in the way would not depart from it as they grow older (Prov. 22:6) Ideal picture given by the example of an elder
God’s Ideal plan is not always the reality Spouses that don’t know/obey God Children that don’t know/obey God Parents/Siblings that don’t know/obey God
Reasons for this Reality Sometimes people come to Christ after a family has been established. Sometimes we make choices in our youth and that is the result. Sometimes we make mistakes. Individuals have their own free will. For one reason or another life can be very messy The situations we find ourselves in can make serving God difficult. All things are possible through Christ!
YOU CAN REMAIN FAITHFUL!!! While situations may be difficult, this absolutely does not mean you can’t remain faithful! We are not tempted beyond what we are able (1 Cor. 10:13). Encouragement found in people remaining faithful and accomplishing great acts of faith when others are not.
Examples of Faith Job – A series of calamities – His wife and friends are unharmed – Despite discouragement from those he was closest to he remains faithful David – “The worst step-father of all time” – A discouraging older brother (1 Sam. 17:28) – After sin with Bathsheba, horrible family situations Rape and murder between children A child who revolts and tries to take his throne Hosea – Marries a woman who practices harlotry (Hos. 1-2) – He redeems her from her harlotry (Hos. 3)
Your Family Can Become Faithful There is Hope for your family! Initial Clarifications! – Your families greatest hope and influence is through your faithfulness – We must commit to be faithful even if we have to stand alone. The only person we have control over is ourselves. An unbelieving spouse can become faithful – 1 Cor 7:12-14, 16 You can raise your children to be faithful when your spouse is not – A possible example in Timothy (2 Tim. 1:5; 3:15)
Your Efforts are not in Vain! We can get discouraged thinking our best efforts are accomplishing nothing. Don’t believe the lie! Our efforts are never in vain if we remain faithful. Other Christians see our efforts and are greatly encouraged. – Some of the greatest examples we have (Biblical and real life) are those who remain faithful when those around them are not. – Encourages those in the same/similar situations (Having someone you love that is unfaithful is pretty common--- you’re not in this alone). You often don’t notice the impact you have on others – Change usually comes in time – Unfortunately but fortunately our efforts can affect someone after we have passed. Jesus (Mark 3:21- “When His own people heard of this, they went out to take custody of Him; for they were saying, “He has lost His senses.”) Hezekiah and Manasseh
Points for Perseverance Keep your eye on the prize – Rev. 2:10 “Remain faithful unto death” – John 6:68-69; “To Whom shall we go” Get and Stay Connected with Spiritual family – The influences at home may not be different from those of the world – Take opportunities to assemble together (Heb. 10:24-25) – In the body of Christ we are in this together (Gal. 6:2) Maintain Good, Spiritual habits – Make spiritual priorities come first – Don’t allow anything to come between your right to godliness Worship Prayer Reading the Bible.