In Laws or Out Laws?

This was the Word for Today on the 19th April and I wanted to share it because I really enjoyed it.  It is more tongue in cheek than the usual ones.   I do recommend the UCB daily email for there is usually something for us all to ponder.    

 

After arguing for hours, a couple drove along in silence. Suddenly they passed a barnyard filled with mules and jackasses. Sarcastically, the husband asked, ‘Relatives of yours?’ The wife replied, ‘Yes, in-laws.’ Marriage was God’s idea, and it was a good one. Picking up the theme, Jesus said, ‘A man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife.’ In marriage, ‘two’s company, three’s a crowd!’

So here are ten commandments for being a good in-law:

1) Thou shalt love, honour and respect the couple.

2) Thou shalt grant them independence, resisting the urge to show them ‘a better way’ of doing things.

3) Thou shalt be loyal and not criticise them, for, ‘…That critical spirit has a way of boomeranging…’ (Matthew 7:2 TM).

4) Thou shalt not find fault: ‘Don’t…jump on their failures…unless…you want the same treatment…’ (Matthew 7:1 TM).

5) Thou shalt not outwear thy welcome, and always call before thou showest up at their dwelling. ‘…Don’t…show up at all hours…[they’ll]…get fed up’ (Proverbs 25:17 TM).

6) Thou shalt not expect them to visit thee too often.

7) Thou shalt refrain from giving unsolicited advice: ‘A fool uttereth all his mind: but a wise man keepeth it in…’ (Proverbs 29:11).

8) Thou shalt not talk about how thou wantest grandchildren unless they are already on the way.

9) Thou shalt respect their home decorating taste even when it differeth from thine.

10) Thou shalt pray for them daily and without fail.

If you are an in-law who doesn’t want to be viewed as an out-law, live by these commandments!

© 2012: This devotional is produced by UCB, free of charge through the generosity of our supporters. As a gift to the body of Christ, permission is given to Churches and Christian organisations to copy up to a maximum of 52 daily excerpts per year. Excerpts must acknowledge The Word For Today as the source, give the UCB address and inform that free issues of the daily devotional are available for the UK and Republic of Ireland.

The Word For Today is written by Bob and Debby Gass, with Ruth Gass Halliday.

Word For Today

Easter Reflection

This is the Easter Reflection I wrote for the Sunday morning 10am service.  I didn’t use it because I ended up speaking on how we celebrate our God in his glory of the Trinity.  I will post that thought shortly.  However it is the first time I have ever preached without notes! Quite something.  For those of you curious to know what I would have said – here it is.  Please remember it is in the context of morning worship on Easter Sunday.  Using John 20:1-18

 

The theme of today’s service is celebration.  And what a celebration it is.  On Maundy Thursday we sat with Jesus at his table and on Good Friday we followed Judas to the gallows, Peter to the courtyard and Mary to the cross.  We were encouraged to stay with Jesus, to watch and prayer.

Today though we celebrate the good news of our risen Brother Jesus.  We don’t totally understand it, can’t readily explain it but like the disciples we are prepared to believe what we cannot imagine. We look back at something that happened 2000 years ago and try to grasp hold of it. 

Can you imagine the pure joy when they finally realised the truth?  The one they thought was the Messiah had died – in shame, a failure, and abandoned by them.  They had hit rock bottom.  There was no lower they could go.  Suddenly though here is Jesus – who we know appeared to them and reassured them.  In John’s Gospel – appearing first to the Mary Magadelene.  She wasn’t so keen to leave the Garden. 

We know from stories that Mary Magadelene loved Jesus deeply and understood him best based on the perfume story.  And she wanted answers.  So she waited for him at the last place she had seen him.  He rewarded her and made her the first one to share the good news. 

Can you imagine the joy Mary felt? 

When you meet Jesus do you feel joy? Is today a day of celebration for you?  Did you wake up this morning and think to yourself the Christ is risen.  Praise the Lord.  We run the risk of being complacent because of the distance there is between then and now.  And if we don’t make an effort to mark Good Friday we cannot experience the joy of Easter Sunday in all its glory. 

Celebration comes from a desire to mark a happy occasion. Today is a great day to celebrate.  For today we remember that death is defeated for ever.  Today we remember that evil in whatever shape or form you understand it is defeated.  Today we remember that forgiveness will always have the last word.  Today the light of the world shines even brighter.

The question is do we think that celebrating is just the party element?  Or is there a form of celebrating that includes sharing the good news with others?  Mary could have kept the encounter with Jesus a secret but she didn’t.  There is something so amazing, so wonderful about meeting the risen Jesus that you can’t help but share it.  When we think we have lost something and we are deeply affected by its loss we end up telling the world when we have found it. 

I am sure you can remember times when you have lost something and found it eventually and wondered who you can tell.  Mary couldn’t have kept Jesus a secret because she was so excited. 

I pray that this Easter – as you celebrate our risen Saviour you will be so moved with excitement and joy that you will simply burst if you don’t share the good news with another.

I pray that this Easter you will be encouraged to believe that with God all things are possible – including life from death. And that he is willing to share his power through us as he did through Jesus. 

I pray that this Easter you will be blessed by our Risen Christ, and feel heaven breach this cold dark earth and claim back her own residents. 

I pray that as we gather around the Lord’s table – his table where he is the host we will remember the cost of his body and blood.  And as we partake of him we will receive the faith to believe in our Holy God who loves us and for whom nothing is impossible. 

 

We celebrate Easter for 7 weeks so this is still within the right time zone! 

God bless,

Love Sarah