For once you were full of darkness, but now you have light from the Lord. So live as people of light! For this light within you produces only what is good and right and true” (Ephesians 5:8-9, NLT).
Many of you spent a good chunk of your evening last night at one Super Bowl Party or another. And a majority of you were probably more interested in the commercials than the game–at least until the last quarter. One particular commercial caught the attention of many, and the last part of the poem in it reminded me of the first verse in Ephesians 5:
[God said, “I need] somebody who’d bale a family together with the soft strong bonds of sharing, who’d laugh and then sigh…and then respond with smiling eyes, when his son says he wants to spend his life “doing what dad does”. So, God made a farmer!”
Paul begins the chapter by saying, “Imitate God, therefore, in everything you do, because you are his dear children.” A son should want to be like his dad–perhaps not always in profession but in character and integrity. Paul also encourages us to follow Christ our brother’s example by living a life of sacrificial love. Because of the sacrifice so costly, yet free to us, we should remove ourselves from impurity and greed. The coarse talk that might have spewed forth from our mouths at one time should be replaced by words of thanksgiving to our Heavenly Father for this new life we have.
We are reminded of the stark difference between our old life and our new life. Our old life was full of darkness and evil, worthless and incurring God’s anger. Our new life should be full of light, producing what is good, right, and true. And like a cancer patient who had once been given four months to live but is now cancer free, we should make the most of our time, realizing how short it really is.
In chapter three, Paul delves into the mystery of God’s boundless love. In this chapter, he sheds some light on a really profound mystery: marriage ;).
Seriously, though, Paul shows us how the relationship between husband and wife is a reflection of the relationship between Christ and the church. Verse 21 through the end of the chapter enlighten us to God’s plan for marriage. Study it. Memorize it. And ponder the question Gary Thomas poses in his book, Sacred Marriage: “What if God’s primary intent for your marriage isn’t to make you happy. . . but holy?”