Monday, April 12, 2010

Call it What it Is

I recently read a little book by Jay Adams on the Christian Home.  I want to share a summary of the first chapter.  I found it simply profound & profoundly simple.
He compares a Christian home with a non-Christian home.  Every one has problems & issues that they are daily facing.  They may have the same exact struggles & problems.  The difference is what is done about the problems.
Christians must admit their sins.  Call them what they are.
If we believe the Bible, we know that no one is perfect!  I am not.  You are not.  Your spouse is not.  Your kids are not.  We are all sinners.  Don't let it shock you.  Admit to it.  And call it what it is.
Don't try to just brush off a harsh word as, "I was having a hard day."
 "I was just tired, that's why I ignored you & your needs."
 "If you had been nicer, I would've been nicer, too."
"I love you, so it shouldn't matter to you if I did something hurtful; I try my best."
If we make excuses, shift blame & re-name our sin (to somehow sound pleasant), then where is the hope?
Expect there to be sin; in your own life, and in the lives of others.  No one is perfect.
If we can identify the problem as sin, then there is good news!
Jesus Came to Save Sinners
Confess it as sin.  He died to pay the penalty.  And He lives again in victory.  He saved you from your sin & He is saving you from you sins.  Because of Jesus, you have hope.  You don't have to dwell in your live of sin.  He gives victory.  If the Spirit of God is working in you, then He will give you the grace & power to live rightly.  Never perfectly in this life.  But, there will be a progression in righteousness.

He sums up the chapter saying, "The Christian home, then, is a place where sinful persons face the problems of a sinful world.  Yet, they face them together with God and His resources, which are all centered in Christ.  Sinners live in the Christian home, but the sinless Savior lives there too.  That is what makes the difference!"

9 comments:

laura said...

I love that book! We reference it frequently, both in our own marriage and parenting and as we deal with friends. It's a great book and I love especially that he begins by pointing out that we're not hopeless when it comes to our sins! We don't have to wallow in the misery of being (fill in the blank) because Jesus is saving us from our sins and we are not slaves any more.

I do think though that part of learning to be gracious with your spouse is learning to recognize times when they may be particularly vulnerable to sinful behavior. For example: I am a very unreasonable and "grumpy" (nice name, right?) woman when I am over-tired. Like, irrational-grumpy. Or, many women (myself included) are prone to especially difficult emotional periods following the birth of a child, or during that time of the month. My husband has learned to be extra patient with me around those times. Likewise, I have learned after nearly 6 years of marriage, to not try and discuss important or difficult things when he is hungry. :) We all tend to be bears when we're not fed.

Just as we need to call a spade a spade when it comes to sin, understanding that we are all imperfect and we all sin, I think that should make us all the more gracious and understanding when it comes to our spouse and their various weaknesses.

Stef said...

Amen! And this is how we often build churches with completely two faced, fake people, that never really get to know one another or are open with each other, in an honest, Christ like fashion.

I love how he points out that this kind of behavior must start in Christian homes! Its where everything begins.

LindaFaye said...

I find so much grace from my hubby in this area. I think it comes from his deep understanding of his own forgiveness and his willingness to recognize that he has so much forgiveness to offer to others.

Me... I still need lots of reminders that I'm a sinner. I still default to the thought that I'm a "good girl" surrounded by sinners. Hey, admitting it is the first step, right?

Erin said...

Laura, thank you so much for your comment. God shows us grace in our weakness. How much we (I!) need to learn to show it to others! Yes, Linda! I can identify with you!

Charlotte said...

Oh my, I need to get my hands on that book! And that is only the first chapter? How true! We have such the tendency to see everyone else's specks while ignoring our own, massive logs. And what a good reminder in raising our children and what kind of attitude we should be having when we are disciplining them. Thanks, Erin for sharing this!

Melissa Joy said...

I haven't read that one (yet!), but we enjoy Jay Adams. Thanks for sharing these notes. So true. Such a good reminder.
Good comments, too. :)

Nicola S. said...

Thank you Erin for posting that. Praise God that we have a loving Savior that saved us from our sins. I need to be reminded often not to sugar coat my sins. What a blessed redeemer we have.

Melissa Joy said...

I haven't read that one (yet!), but we enjoy Jay Adams. Thanks for sharing these notes. So true. Such a good reminder.
Good comments, too. :)

Erin said...

Laura, thank you so much for your comment. God shows us grace in our weakness. How much we (I!) need to learn to show it to others! Yes, Linda! I can identify with you!