Monday, December 26, 2011

Respect and Honor

Esther 1:12 "But queen Vashti refused to come at the king's command delivered by the eunuchs. At this the king became enraged, and his anger burned within him." ESV


Well, I finished my study in Ephesians. Man, that was a good one. Then I did a short study leading up to the birth of Jesus at the beginning of Matthew and Luke. Now Christmas is over and I wondered: "What am I going to study now?" For some reason I landed in Esther. Who knows why, but here goes.


King Ahasuerus was a big deal king. He reigned over 127 provinces from India to Ethiopia. Now this is pretty large land mass. In fact, if you were to fly from India to Ethiopia it would take you almost five and a half hours. I am thinking that this guy had a lot of power. Not only that, but he had a lot of money. He decided to throw a party for his officials and servants for 180 days. The purpose of the party? To show off. To show the Medes and Persians just how powerful and rich he really was. This guy had it all. Fine linens, furniture and utensils of gold and silver; floors of marble, porphyry (igneous rock with large crystals) mother of pearl and precious stones (just think, you throw emerald and diamonds in your floor); and all of the finest wine and as much as the finest wine that anyone wanted to drink. And his wife, Vashti, was beautiful and "lovely to look at". This guy lived in the lap of luxury and was surrounded by beauty.


After he got done showing off all of his stuff, he wanted to show off his wife. Only one problem. Vashti wanted nothing to do with it. He summoned for her, but she refused to come. He wanted to show everyone just how lucky he was to have such a beautiful and complying wife. Beauty? Maybe. Complying? No. The result? Embarrassment. Well no one, not even his wife was going to embarrass this guy. He had it all. He could get it all. Everyone was to respond to his command and his wife did not.


Now, why did I pick this verse today? What hit me? I realize that it does not matter how much stuff I have. I does not matter how rich I am. It doesn't matter how powerful I am. It doesn't matter what accolades I receive or how impressive I am. What matters is my relationship with Georgann. Yes she is beautiful but her real beauty is her inner person. Vashti missed this. The problem is, Ahasuerus also missed some things. He probably did not respect her. He probably did not treat her well. Sure, she had it all but it doesn't matter. What matters is relationship, and these two obviously did not have this together. He only cared about status and using her. She only cared about her own personal control. These are not elements of a good marriage and when they exist, things cave in.


My question is how do I treat my wife? With respect and honor...or do I take her for granted? How do I respond to her when we don't agree? Do I get angry? Ahasuerus did. God, let me respond appropriately and let me honor her. Please allow our relationship be what You want.


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