Wives, Boys, and Toys
Monday Morning, February 4, 2002
Question: Have you been in situations where the women show a lot of enthusiasm for the Kingdom, but their husbands are either lazy, workaholics, or _____?? SOME of the folks that God brought into our lives (for a time???) show passion for God’s ways… My wife spent the afternoon with four women who again drove quite a distance to be here. It appears with SOME of these wives that their husbands lack zeal. One gal said, “My husband likes to have fun—either skiing, camping, or hiking. I enjoy spending time with God’s people. My idea of having fun is having God’s people over so that they can tear our house apart!”
I think if you were to check these guys’ (husbands) vital signs, you’d find a spiritual pulse. What experience have you all had?? Thanks,
Hi there. Historically, and across the miles, we’ve noticed something profound. : ) All “zeal” that women have is NOT always in Wisdom or Grace. Sometimes, it’s a fleshly, controlling zeal that does not comprehend what is just below. But, I’m sure that’s not a problem there. : ) Just thought I’d mention it, for sometime far distant in the future, and in some far away place. : )
As for the Boyz…
PRIMARILY, the sheep are separated from the goats… by the VOICE of the Shepherd. Sheep and goats can be all mixed up within the same crowd of dumb animals around the well—until the Shepherd’s Voice is heard. The goats will yawn at that voice, but the sheep find their way to the Voice.
The goats make excuses, or “try real hard” for awhile, and then drift back to their entertainment or selfish pursuits, dead to the Voice, except to please men (which cannot be sustained). Or they are defensive and argumentative, blame shift, or counter accuse in order to change the subject away from themselves. Those would be goats. Baaaa-d boys.
The sheep, on the other hand, will be easy to recognize in but a little bit of time. They will be the ones who CARE when they Hear—and their walk is SUSTAINED, and with “ever-increasing Glory.” In OUR Covenant, “A man does not need to beg his neighbor constantly: ‘Please, oh please, know the Lord, know the Lord!’” Sheep care and Listen. Goats cannot sustain much of anything in His direction. They only want to USE Him, and to defend their own flesh simultaneously.
Another way of saying it is this: You won’t know if there are vital signs there or not, until there is Vision and a clear knowledge that “the Kingdom is at hand.” Without VISION the people cast off restraint. If the play-babies don’t know WHY they should care (the Vision, the Words of Life), they will LOOK like goats perhaps. But IF they know WHY all of this matters, and the Vision of Jesus and His “ever-increasing Government” is before them, they will not fuss and fume and fight you. They will not continue to be forever play-babies (though they may play—see below : ) ). They will not “cast off restraint” if they KNOW what life is about. In other words, they’ll REPENT… when it is clear the Kingdom is at Hand. Otherwise, most will just act like children in the marketplace. “If the trumpet sounds an uncertain sound, who will get ready for the battle?”
The ONLY way to find out if there IS anything Real there, is by getting into their lives to find out if they CARE about the Things of God—and if they’ll SACRIFICE the pleasures, for the sake of anything that is GOD.
The skiing kind of stuff isn’t a problem—AS LONG AS:
1) Kingdom things are under discussion and the focus at all the times they SHOULD be (e.g., when shallowness on someone’s part becomes evident, or someone’s eyes are wandering, or carnal, fleshly humor emerges, or loquaciousness, or selfishness, or independence or some other sins emerge through the course of the day). IF “seeking FIRST the Kingdom” takes place AT ALL TIMES, “as we rise up, sit down, and walk along the way,” and we’re not having our “fun time” and then later we’ll have our “church time”—IF the times on the slopes are MEANT to be “windows into the souls of our companions” and provide Opportunities (as opposed to entertainment as a separate category of our lives, and the “religious stuff” and “character stuff” and “witnessing stuff” are for later), then the skiing COULD be okay.
2) IF all involved are willing to BUILD it Right (NOT “who likes to ski the most,” or “who wants to come,” or “who has the money to come,” but, WHO SHOULD BE THERE, CONSIDERING THE GIFTS AND MATURITY LEVELS OF THOSE INTERESTED IN GOING, and who should stay home for Kingdom reasons), then it could be okay.
3) IF all involved are willing to be in the Light about any obsessions or lusts about such worldly things that may become apparent if they “don’t get their way,” or if they are compulsive to “ALWAYS” do it at some time of year, or day of the week, or habitual time or way, or whatever, and,
4) IF everyone could GLADLY just skip it this week, or forever, for Jesus’ sake… then it COULD be okay. It’s NOT about “to ski or not to ski,” or anything so external as that, of course.
Help a little? I’d better stop now. I answer too many letters (write too much), I’m told. : )