The “Almost Newlywed Game”
Maybe you’re old enough to remember the Newlywed game when it was on TV. Last weekend Jean and I were blessed to attend a Pastor and Wife Retreat through our State Convention. On Friday night we had a special evening with our spouses where we renewed our vows with re-written vows. Don’t tell anyone, but we actually danced… once (Gasp! A Baptist pastor dancing with his wife?! Yes, and there’s more that story LOL!). We also got selected… or roped into playing the “Almost Newlywed Game”. We were one of four couples, ranging from 32 years of marriage (us) to around 50. We were asked five questions each about our spouses; and the big question, of course, was: “How well do you know your mate?” We were pleasantly surprised in that we won. But it got me thinking…
Are you married? Even dating? How well do you know your partner? What do they like, dislike? What are their dreams, hopes, plans, preferences; fears, doubts, concerns? We profess our love, but how deep is that love? Jean and I won, but we also missed some questions… and I have no doubt I would have missed others, because I’m thinking I haven’t been paying that close attention to the woman I love; I haven’t made her as much of my focus as I could or should. That’s my confession as well as my conviction, and I am committing myself to work on that. But being your pastor, you can likely guess that I’m going to take this line of thinking a bit further…
Are you a Christian, as in you have professed your faith, even your love for Jesus? So… if you were to be asked five questions about your Christ, how well would you do? I suppose it depends upon the questions. But let’s put trivia and intellectual facts aside; how well do you know your God? What does He like, dislike; what are His plans and desires for your life, your home; not to mention His Church? Life is not a game show, it’s not even a contest; actually it is a lot more serious than that. Everyday our understanding of God is questioned, challenged; how do we do with our responses?
At the end our game on Friday all of us received prizes; but Jean and I got the best prizes. At the end of our lives, all of us who are genuinely Christians will receive the prize of Heaven; and I can think of no greater prize. But there will also be rewards bestowed upon us by our Heavenly Father… that we in turn get to give back to Him. What will yours look like? What have you done in appreciation and obedience to His Word? How well do you even know what He desires of you? I have no greater desire than to simply hear “Well done my good and faithful servant.” What about you?
Truly successful marriages require us to be dedicated students of our mates. The successful, fruitful Christian life likewise calls us to be dedicated students of our God. “This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.” (John 17:3; also c.f. Jer. 9:24; Hosea 6:3; John 8:31-32; Phil. 3:10; Col. 1:10; 2 Tim. 2:15)
Coming up… This coming Sunday I am taking a couple of Sunday’s departure from our verse-by-verse study of John to speak to the issue of “Fear”. When Jesus walked into the room (John 20:19ff), He found His disciples in “fear of the Jews”. So, what’s up with “fear”; is it sinful?
Monday the 4th is our quarterly Leadership Meeting. We have lots to cover. Mother’s Day is May 10th; Friday, May 15th, ESBC will have a special “Mom’s” movie… I hear it is a very good movie, and for guys too. And mark you calendars for May 17th, when we will be having our Ministry Fair. This will be a great time to see all that our church is engaged in, and where you might want to consider serving, if you’re not already.
Have a blessed and wonderful week. Pastor Brian