Sunday, January 08, 2006

321 Obedience

Our Women of the Word (WOW) study this winter at Upper Arlington Lutheran Church (UALC) is Priscilla Shirer's "He Speaks to Me." This is a Lifeway publication, so if you are familiar with their DVD/video + workbook format (Beth Moore), you know the drill. I had to leave after the DVD yesterday to hang the quilt show, but I think Priscilla is a dynamic speaker. She fully engages with her audience. So far, her examples don't speak to me (about small children), but at 66, I'm not the target audience. However, this morning in preparing day 1 of week 1, I noticed on p. 10 this phrase: "obedience requires sacrifice," followed by her examples of serving family before her own desires, time with the Lord, not overeating, controlling spending and honoring her husband's authority. I'm not sure I agree--that this list could be called "sacrificial." Well, only in upper middle class America.

This is a list of joys, in my opinion. 1) She has a family to serve. So many don't. At my age, I know many widows. I visit nursing homes filled with people whose self-worth as Christians was built on serving others, and now are tasting the bitter fruit of no purpose to live. 2) She has a Bible to read and lives in a country where that is permitted and protected by law. So many don't. 3) She has enough food available that she can choose to overeat. So many don't, or may have only one or two staples to choose from. 4) She has a good income--a dual income in fact, which creates discretionary spending. So many don't. Their choices are all made for them--pay the minimum and hope the bill collectors don't call. 5) She has a husband who loves and protects her and enables her to have a Christian ministry. She is an African-American in a country where the marriage rate for blacks is 39%, down from 80% a hundred years ago.

Sacrifice? What do you think?

1 comment:

ilona said...

Sacrifice? I think so... there are the little things to be faithful in and the great things, but it is all a matter of disciplining the character don't you think?

I do believe we in our comfy Western lives do make too much of what something costs us, however. We fret over duty, rather than moving on to those things that would really impact our world. Maybe it's a matter of vision.