Understand How to Reproof

speakingWe are beginning to understand more and more about relationships, our marriages, aren’t we?  I know I am!  Yet, as much I’m learning, I need to apply it!  God has given me so many opportunities to apply what I’ve been learning in the past few days.  I’m seeing relationships fall apart, angry words between friends.  I’m seeing first hand how this also affects those around them.  I’m seeing the “worldly” reactions when if we are walking in Christ we should be seeing Christian reactions.  Let us remember going forward; the purpose of all relationships is to glorify our Father, to walk like Jesus.  1 Corinthians 13:4-7 ESV “Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”

So how do we point out sin in our husband’s (or another’s) life?  Martha Peace gives us some guidelines in The Excellent Wife:

1.  Choose the right time.  We don’t do it when we are in front of others; this is downgrading and treating him like a child.  We don’t do it when we have a sinful attitude; this will backfire! We don’t do it when we are angry and want to lash out at him. Our hearts must be open and loving.  We don’t do it when they are not giving you their undivided attention. We must pray about the situation, look in the Word for God’s direction in the situation.  We must be in complete control of ourselves and not angry, disappointed or focusing on the things he’s been doing wrong.  The right time is when you are alone together, when there is plenty of time to talk.

” For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; …”  Ecclesiastes 3:1-7 ESV.

2. Choose the right wording. We must know what we want to say.  If it makes you more comfortable, you could write it out and then practice saying it out loud.  We must have love in our voice.  This may be difficult, I know it can be for me

“The heart of the righteous ponders how to answer, but the mouth of the wicked pours out evil things.” Proverbs 15:28 ESV.

3. Comfort him as you correct him.  In His letters to the church at Ephesus, Jesus repoofed the church members for losing their first love.  He threatened harsh discipline if they didn’t repent.  However, before He reproffed them, He comforted them by telling them the good things they were doing.  I’m sure it made it easier for the church to accept the reproof.  In the same way, as Jesus taught us, we should reproof.

“‘I know your works, your toil and your patient endurance, and how you cannot bear with those who are evil, but have tested those who call themselves apostles and are not, and found them to be false. I know you are enduring patiently and bearing up for my name’s sake, and you have not grown weary.” Revelation 2:2-3 ESV.

4.  Be specific.  Sometimes it feels more comfortable to us to be vague rather than being straight forward and honest.  Most people are oblivious to vague indirect hints, especially husbands.  Speak the truth in love.  Ask if there is anything you can do to make it easier for him.

“Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God.” James 1:19-20 ESV.

5.  Communicate a spirit of unconditional love.  Show him this love by being patient and kind.

“But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8

TASK

Yes, I’m going to give you a task today.  I want you to print out or bookmark Galatians 5:22-23 (“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.”)

I want you to read this Scripture throughout the day.  I want you to begin to see where you are not producing good fruit.  When you see you haven’t exhibited these fruits ~ STOP and Repent immediately.

I promise you, you will see changes immediately!  You will begin to feel God working in your life more.  You will be producing the kind of fruit God wants more and more.  Try it you’ve got nothing to lose!