Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Corporal punishment

Okay, husband, time to put on your Dad Hat.  If you're not a dad yet, then put on your I'm-Imagining-I'm-a-Dad Hat. Let's say you tell your son, "Please make your bed." You stated it with sufficient volume that you had no doubt the sound waves carried at 700+ miles per hour to your progeny's ear. His eyeballs, clear and focused, were on your face so you had every reason to believe they saw your lips move at very nearly the same instant that your words tom-tom'ed upon his ear drums.

Now, imagine your reaction if you received the following reactions to your message.
  • NADA.  Zip.  Nothing. The head turns back to the iTouch and the current game of Angry Words with Friends. No. Surely not. Laurence Olivier could not have delivered the lines with greater verve and clarity. You know you were heared, but you didn't even get an acknowledgment that you had communicated.  Ignored.
How 'bout this one.
  • THE FORGETFUL ENTHUSIAST. "Wilco, pops! Right away. I'm on it. Let me just finish this episode of NCIS-Des Moines." An hour later he's out the door to spend the day with friends. Later you saunter down the hall to get something out of the back bedroom and your eye catches the rumpled heap of a bed as you pass Junior's room. Great intentions. Just gets busy with other things. Distracted like a puppy in a field of butterflies.
Ah, we're just getting started.
  • THE SNOW JOB. "Yes, sir." Okay, but you know that the affirmative response has been used in the past to get you off of their back. So you pursue.  "Did you understand me?" "Yes, Dad. I'll get on it." Twenty-minutes later, they haven't moved an inch. No intention of bed making; just pitching answers to satisfy dad's demands.
  • THE LAWYER. After twenty-minutes of inaction you poke, "Did you get your bed made?" Up to the bar they stride, "Did you mean today? You didn't clarify the date nor the time of when you wanted me to conclude the bed-making enterprise. Could you get that in writing and notarized for me next time, and I'd like at least twenty-four hours of advanced warning so I can ensure all of the equipment is in place to complete said tasking."
  • THE REBEL. No sooner has the message hit the cortex of your child's brain than the word, "No" falls from their lips with nary a change of expression. Eyes locked. Icy defiance.
So how would you handle those responses to your command?

Now the tougher question: Which of these children are you?

Try these commands from your Father on for size.  Most you've heard here before:
    "Dwell with your wives with understanding" (1 Peter 3:7)

    "Show honor to your wife as the weaker vessel" (Same)

    "Love your wife as Christ loved the church..." (Ephesians 5:25)

    "...and gave himself up for her" (Same)

    "Husbands should love their wives as their own bodies" (Ephesians 5:28)

    "Do not be harsh with them" (Colossians 3:19)

    "Do not deprive (your wife)" (1 Corinthians 7:5)

    "Out do (your wife) in showing honor" (Romans 12:10)

    "Comfort (your wife)" (2 Corinthians 13:11)

    "Through love, serve (your wife)" (Galatians 5:13)

    "Do not lie to (your wife)" (Colossians 3:9)

    "And let us consider how to stir up (our wives) to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging (our wives), and all the more as you see the Day drawing near" (Hebrews 10:24b-25)

    "Do not grumble against (your wife)" (James 5:9)
How's that for starters? I haven't nearly exhausted Scripture. If you are doing these things, keep on. If not, I ask my question again. Which child are you? What is your reason for bristling against the bit? Are any of the child's excuses valid? Has God left you any loopholes in the above commandments?

Husband, love your God. Worship him. Commit to him.  And thereby love your wife.

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