To love as Jesus has loved us. That becomes the desire of every follower of Jesus who is grateful for the grace and forgiveness given to us, because that is the “new command” He gave and grows in us (John 13:34-35). But how difficult this is for the husband and wife, for the mom and dad!
We are more relaxed in relationship to those with whom we are most familiar. Our relaxation often translates into a low awareness of self-absorption, and consequently results in a lack of denial of self. Therefore, we become less patient and more frustrated, less gracious and more critical, less generous and more cautious.
Paul challenges this relaxation and self-absorption in his letter to the church of Ephesus. In fact, he practically applies it in two specific relationships – marriage at the end of Ephesians 5 and parenting at the beginning of Ephesians 6.
May we beg Jesus daily to help us as husbands and wives and as moms and dads to love one another and to love our children like Jesus has loved us. May we ask Jesus to grow us daily to discover more and more how Jesus loves us.
May Paul’s words in Ephesians 5:1-2, as translated below by Eugene Peterson, become the heartbeat of our marriages and our parenting, because it is crucial in order to grow kids with grace and send kids with gospel:
“Watch what God does, and then you do it, like children who learn proper behavior from their parents. Mostly what God does is love you. Keep company with Him and learn a life of love. Observe how Christ loved us. His love was not cautious but extravagant. He didn’t love in order to get something from us but to give everything of Himself to us. Love like that.”
~Ephesians 5:1-2, the Message
Husbands – ask Jesus to help you love your wife like that.
Wives – ask Jesus to help you love your husband like that.
Parents – ask Jesus to help you love your children like that.
What is it in our minds, our hearts, our past, our present, our schedules, and our priorities that keeps us from loving like this?