By Curt Fowler
VALDOSTA – “Husbands, love your wives as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.” – Ephesians 5:25
Do you ever feel overwhelmed by the apparent conflict between your duties to provide for your family, serve God and serve your family?
I know I do. That is why I found this new book from Ajith Fernado fascinating. Ajith has served in some form of ministry all his life. Most of his service has been done in war-torn Sri Lanka. All of this could and probably should cause an incredible strain on his family. But, Ajith has persisted in making happiness in his home his greatest ambition.
The folks at Desiring God interviewed Ajith. Below are some of the great nuggets I got from the interview.
If you are a follower of Christ, we have a deep responsibility to keep our wives happy. If we do not, our children will know that she is unhappy and associate that unhappiness with following Christ.
Love is to be our greatest aim (1 Corinthians 14) and our wife is to be the first recipient of that love. It follows that making our wives happy should be our greatest ambition. Not a concession, but our passion.
In Deuteronomy 24, Israelite men were instructed to not go to war during their first year of marriage. Instead, they were called to focus on “bringing happiness” to their new bride. We are called to “bring” happiness at whatever personal cost may be required. We will probably be required to “give up” some of our personal ambitions (no matter how Godly they may be) to meet this goal.
Struggle is part of our ambition to become more like God. It is part of the process. Embrace it.
Debate is important in a happy family, but we must learn how to fight without hurting each other, without bruising each other.
Fight well = be truthful, do not insult, do not bring up the past (we forgave and forgot..), earnestly pray through the disagreement, ask for God’s wisdom.