Self-Examination in Practice
There is not an area of our lives that is exempt from self-examination. Let’s take a little self- examination in a few areas of our lives.
First, consider the husband wife relationship. Our standard of measurement is the Lord. The husband is to love his wife in the same manner Christ loved the church (Eph. 5:25). Each husband must ask himself, “Compared to how Christ loved His bride, the church, am I loving my bride in the same manner? Am I dying for her? Are my dreams, wishes and wants secondary to hers? Am I sacrificially giving myself for her happiness?” When it is pointed out that I can improve in a certain area of my life as a husband, do I seek to improve or just sit like an old toad on a stump, saying, “Nobody is changing me.” The love Christ had for His bride was proven by action and measured by sacrifice. He gave Himself for her. Am I truly giving myself for her? Am I seeking to live with understanding? Am I doing her good by understanding her dreams, wishes, wants and desires. Here is the serious rub, if not, my prayers are being hindered (1 Pet. 3:7). Which means, my worship is not pleasing to God. My relationship with my wife and how I love her compared to how Christ loved the church has everything to do with how my worship is accepted by God. Are we genuine? Is Christ in us? Are we judged qualified?
Not only husbands, but wives, do you submit to your husband as the church does to Christ (Eph. 5:22). I know that word “submit” is not a popular word today. I know some women say, “I am not submitting to him or any other man. I am woman, hear me roar.” Well, you can do that, but you cannot do that and be as Christ wanted his bride to be toward Him. Submission is really not an ugly word. The idea is of reverential submission (Eph. 5:33). Wives submit because of a deep respect for their husbands. Their husbands have so demonstrated and proven their love for their wives that the natural, and axiomatic response is, to give herself to him. And once again, this is serious. If women fail to fulfill this role they give the adversary an opportunity to speak evil of God (Titus 2:1-5). Are you genuine? Is Christ in you? Are you judged qualified?
— to be continued.
More from Rickie Jenkins chapter in the book 12 Spiritual Disciplines.