“For even I, the Son of Man, came here not to be served but to serve others, and to give my life as a ransom for many.” Mark 10:45
Billy and Ruth Graham met in November of 1940 and their first date came in December when they attended their college's presentation of Handel's Messiah. Later that night in the Wheaton College dormitory, Ruth knelt down by her bed and prayed, "God, if you let me serve you with that man, I'd consider it the greatest privilege in my life." Couples who see serving God with their spouse as life's greatest privilege generally experience life's greatest blessings as well.
As a husband, I believe that my primary responsibility and my ministry priority is to loving lead my spouse. If my wife Toni-Marie is not my first ministry, then every other area of ministry is affected. And while I have many roles and responsibilities as a pastor, I need to make a concentrated effort to affirm, connect, communicate, encourage, love, pray and support her unconditionally.
In the Book of Ephesians, the author Paul writes and spells out in Chapter 5 how a spirit-guided relationship between a husband and wife exists and therefore is blessed by God. The Bible says in Ephesians 5:21 that husbands and wives need to “summit to one another out of reverence for Christ.” The passage continues and provides us with a picture of the relationship between Christ and the church. Ephesians 5:25 says, “husbands must love your wives with the same love Christ showed the church. He gave up His life for her.” WOW, this is a pretty heavy requirement!!! It’s a big feat to accomplish and it’s a huge responsibility that God gives the husband. And a husband that is being obedient to God’s word needs to remember that his wife must be his first ministry! He needs to sacrifice for his wife, to serve her, to put her needs above his own. And you might be thinking, but even to the extent of giving up his life for her? Absolutely, without a doubt!!! The verse concludes by saying, “He gave up his life for her” (Eph. 5:25).
So, the husband should be a “covering” for his wife. The husband should be a shield, a protector, a layer of armor that defends his wife regardless of the price. The Book of John describes it this way when Jesus said, “I command you to love each other in the same way that I love you. And here is how to measure it, the greatest love is shown when people lay down their lives for their friends” (John 15:13). So the husband is a “covering” for his wife because the love of God compels him to be obedient unto Jesus Christ. And Jesus Christ paid the ultimate sacrifice by dying on the cross for our sins.
It’s also interesting to note the last thought of Malachi 2:14; it says this about the relationship between a husband and his wife, “Though she is your companion and your wife by covenant.” The word “companion” used here means someone united with another in thoughts, goals, plans, and efforts. One of the greatest privileges in my life is to serve alongside my wife in ministry. We partner together in the “Marriage and Family Ministry” here at Sunrise Church. By “Serving God Together”, we get to observe first-hand how God’s healing hand and restoration happens with married couples and in relationships. By “Serving God Together” we experience His abundant blessings (John 10:10) in our marriage, within our family and to those we co-labor with in ministry. I would encourage you to get involved; as a couple “Serve God Together” and join the team of couples in the “Marriage and Family Ministry” here at Sunrise Church.
What is the greatest privilege of your life?
Do you sacrifice for your spouse?
As a couple, are you “Serving God Together?”
Posted on Tue, April 14, 2015
by Sam Petitfils