Part 9 of 'Let's Talk About Marriage' part of the 'In Marriage' series:
In marriage and parenting, addictions are also developed as coping mechanism for one or both partner as well as children born within or outside the union. The symptoms are then addressed and we never get to the root of the problem. Further issues are created out of that chaos from all areas of society:
In the classroom and on the playground, we encounter inappropriate behaviours and poor grades which are often addressed with the issue of: detentions and exclusions. After-school programmes are designed to help, away-days are incorporated into the academic structure in aid of addressing the symptoms while the real issue is being ignored.
In the church community we encounter ineffective leadership when adults who had no role-models (in the home, school and church setting) as children are placed in leadership positions as adults with no pre, post or ongoing training and the dysfunction flourishes.
We continue to create more and more activities to address the symptoms and totally miss or disregard the real problem. Therefore, little or no attempt is made to address the problem in order to bring about practical solutions. We also fail to obtain and maintain the volunteers needed to keep such programme up and running without burning out willing and faithful servants.
We need to stop long enough to connect the dots and work alongside parents to bring about solutions that are practical and sustainable with the power to transform lives.
In parliament, laws are being modified or created to address the issues in the classroom, on our streets and in our homes. In the school and church meetings, rules are being made and activities designed for such purposes but until we recognise the home as the main training ground and provide the help needed for parents to effectively train up their children we will continue to see crime escalating, addictions increasing, teachers walking away from their profession, volunteers being burnt-out and giving up while marriages continue to end in divorce, families breaking up and church leaders walking away from their fellowships because they aren’t seeing results.
If our children are not being nurtured in the home, in our classrooms, in our Sunday schools and youth groups then they won’t know who they are. If they have an identity issue someone or some group will surely take on that nurturing role and often the media and the street gangs will create an identity for them and that identity will define their purpose in life. More often than not the outcome is one of destruction.
Until we go back to basics and see our Creator and His created beings as He (God the Creator) intended it to be, then we will never see a lasting change. A change that will impact lives from generation to generation.
Until we make the gospel real and relevant to today’s generation, in its simple form, where individuals are presented the gospel and given the opportunity to commit their lives to Christ and provide an ongoing training/discipleship programme then we are failing to honour God in doing our part in helping to fulfil the Great Commission (Matthew 28:16-20).
If all the work we do does not lead to life (John 14:6), how then can we say we are being good stewards of the time, gifts and finance that God has blessed us with? Without a preacher they will not hear the gospel (see Rom 10:14) and if the preacher is not sent how can they hear? Who will stand up for the weak among us? Who will speak out for the voiceless?
We must stop wasting our time in trying to ‘fix’ the problem when only the One who created us can re-programme us and cause us to live the abundant life promised to us when we accept Him as Lord and Saviour of our lives.
When a car breaks down we need to go back to the manufacturer’s manual to get instruction on how to fix the problem. Likewise, when there is a breakdown in our marriages or our family we must refer to our Creator’s manual to be directed in how to rebuild the bridges…how to build-up each other (as couples or as family members). So my encouragement today is this:
In accordance with Ephesians 4:11-12 please provide the families within your fellowship with the tools they need to thrive in their relationships. Will you equip God’s people for works of service so that the body of Christ may be built up?
If you ask God to direct your path on this journey (Proverbs 3:5-6) He will give you the courage to lovingly (and with grace) teach in this neglected area within the church. “Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of Him who is the head, that is, Christ” (Ephesians 4:13-16).
The journey continues in part 10 ~ Right Discipleship Produces Right Living