IS MARRIAGE YOUR priority?
Part 2 continued from November 8th
The Wife’s Mandate
1. A PRIORITY OF THE IRRESISTABLE HOME. A wife who believes her primary ministry is marriage will be making her home a safe place—a place of encouragement, comfort, understanding and refuge. Your home can be that shining beacon on the hill that beckons your husband to come. It should be the place he would rather be when he is at work and at play. It is his place of refreshment, renewal, and refocus. You are the guardian of that place. When activities and the urgent over run this priority all must be stopped and the home reset to be the place of refuge your husband needs. Proverbs 31:11 The heart of her husband safely trusts her; So he will have no lack of gain.
2. A PRIORITY OF REVERENCE. A wife who believes her primary ministry is marriage will not joke about her husband or make cutting remarks to him. She won’t constantly remind him of his faults, mistakes, and failures. Rather she will correct him only if it is absolutely necessary. She will avoid the danger of allowing the home to be in shambles and full of disorder and confusion. But also avoid the danger of making the house a show place where everything must always be neat and immaculate. Husbands want homes to live in, not show places to visit. This is all bound up in her being trustworthy and dependable Proverbs 31:12 She does him good and not evil All the days of her life. Ephesians 5:33 Nevertheless let each one of you in particular so love his own wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.
3. A PRIORITY OF CHEERFULNESS. A wife who believes her primary ministry is marriage will be maintaining a good attitude (Proverbs 31:26, 28, 29; James 3:13-18; Phil.4: 4). James 3:13-18 Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show by good conduct that his works are done in the meekness of wisdom. 14 But if you have bitter envy and self-seeking in your hearts, do not boast and lie against the truth. 15 This wisdom does not descend from above, but is earthly, sensual, and demonic. 16 For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there. 17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy. 18 Now the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace. Philippians 4:4 Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice! Proverbs 31:26-29 She opens her mouth with wisdom, And on her tongue is the law of kindness. 27 She watches over the ways of her household, And does not eat the bread of idleness. 28 Her children rise up and call her blessed; Her husband also, and he praises her: 29 “Many daughters have done well, But you excel them all.” (The reason the Proverbs 31 woman is so amazing is that her marriage was at the center of all she did. It was her PRIMARY MINISTRY!)
4. A PRIORITY OF COMMUNICATION. A wife who believes her primary ministry is marriage will be discussing things lovingly, openly, and honestly. Ephesians 4:29-32 Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. 32 And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.
5. A PRIORITY OF CONTENTMENT. A wife who believes her primary ministry is marriage will be satisfied with her position, her possessions, her tasks (Phil. 4:6-13; Heb. 13:5,16). Philippians 4:6-13 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; 7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. 8 Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. 9 The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you. 10 But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that now at last your care for me has flourished again; though you surely did care, but you lacked opportunity. 11 Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: 12 I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. 13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
6. A PRIORITY OF PATIENCE. A wife who believes her primary ministry is marriage will be long suffering, forgiving, and forbearing (Eph. 4:2,31,32; Col.3:12-14). Colossians 3:12-14 Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; 13 bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do. 14 But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection.
7. A PRIORITY OF CARING. A wife who believes her primary ministry is marriage will be showing an interest in his problems and concerns. Philippians 2:3-4 Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. 4 Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.
8. A PRIORITY OF INDUSTRIOUSNESS. A wife who believes her primary ministry is marriage will be an industrious, frugal, diligent, ambitious, and creative member of the team (Ps. 128:3; Proverbs 31:10-31).
9. A PRIORITY OF HELPFULNESS. A wife who believes her primary ministry is marriage will be offering suggestions, advice, and corrections when needed in a loving fashion. Proverbs 31:26 She opens her mouth with wisdom, And on her tongue is the law of kindness.
10. A PRIORITY OF BEAUTY. A wife who believes her primary ministry is marriage will be keeping herself beautiful, especially in the inner person. 1 Peter 3:3-5 Do not let your adornment be merely outward—arranging the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel— 4 rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God. 5 For in this manner, in former times, the holy women who trusted in God also adorned themselves, being submissive to their own husbands,
11. A PRIORITY OF DEVOTION. A wife who believes her primary ministry is marriage will be maintaining a good spiritual life I Pet. 3:1, 2, 7 Wives, likewise, be submissive to your own husbands, that even if some do not obey the word, they, without a word, may be won by the conduct of their wives, 2 when they observe your chaste conduct accompanied by fear. 7 Husbands, likewise, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered.
12. A PRIORITY OF AGREEMENT. A wife who believes her primary ministry is marriage will be cooperating with him in raising children (Eph. 6:20; Proverbs 31: 26-28, 1 Tim. 5.13: 14). 1 Timothy 5:13-14 And besides they learn to be idle, wandering about from house to house, and not only idle but also gossips and busybodies, saying things which they ought not. 14 Therefore I desire that the younger widows marry, bear children, manage the house, give no opportunity to the adversary to speak reproachfully.
13. A PRIORITY OF LOYALTY. A wife who believes her primary ministry is marriage will be building loyalty to him in the children. The wife's attitudes toward the husband are quickly picked up by the children. Lack of respect or confidence in his leadership, complaints about what he has or has not done will have debilitating influence on the children. She must avoid taking sides with the children or anyone against her husband. She must support and cooperate with him in discipline. All differences of opinion about discipline should be settled away from the children. Amos 3:3 Can two walk together, unless they are agreed?
14. A PRIORITY OF GRATITUDE. A wife who believes her primary ministry is marriage will express regular gratefulness to her husband. Appreciation should be expressed freely and in a variety of ways. Romans 13:7 Render therefore to all their due: taxes to whom taxes are due, customs to whom customs, fear to whom fear, honor to whom honor. 1 Peter 3:6 as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, whose daughters you are if you do good and are not afraid with any terror.
15. A PRIORITY OF CONFIDENCE. A wife who believes her primary ministry is marriage will be showing confidence in his decisions. Disdain, lack of confidence, anxiety, or strong opposition over his decisions may cause him to become indecisive, defensive, or reactionary. If the wife doubts the wisdom of important decisions, she should ask questions in a non-threatening way, assuming that there are some facts she does not know and that he really does want what is best for them both (1 Corinthians. 13:4-8). 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; 5 does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; 6 does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; 7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 8 Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away.
This sermon will continue tomorrow November 10th as we start by looking at “The Husband’s Mandate.”
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