Saturday, November 22

Mrs. Second-Miler

Matthew 5:38-48

“Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth: But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also. And if any man will sue thee at the law, and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloke also. And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain. Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away. Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same? And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so? Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.”

You can get away with doing something the wrong way for a long time, but one day it will catch up with you.

What I am about to expose surprises me as a woman. Why does it surprise me? Because, there are times when I am Mrs. Mouth, Mrs. Pride, Mrs. One-Miler, and Mrs. "My Way." My husband says I’m Mrs. Perfect, but God is not impressed with me at times.

I listened to Dr. David Gibbs preach a message once, and he used an illustration that typified the philosophy of doing something the wrong way;

Dr. Gibbs was raised on a cattle station, where they would slaughter between 4,000 and 7,000 cattle each week; he grew up on the feed lots of the farms where they raised these cattle. When the cattle were slaughtered, they used and sold every part; the hides would be used to make the shoes we wear, the hoofs and bones went into making fertilizer, all of the blood was used for the people who make oatmeal at “Quaker Oats.” They don’t put it in Oatmeal; they own a dog food company.

There was a great market for haunch manure. When you slaughter an animal, they have half digested food in their stomachs. This is haunch manure. Every day there would be tons and tons of it; there are a group of people that pay a lot of money for this - people that grow orchids. They use this to grow those beautiful flowers us ladies like. To deliver this, you have to back up large semi-trucks, it would dump out of an enormous tank into the truck, and then it was driven to the flower people. It’s not a nice job because the smell is terrible, and when you drive down the street all the dogs follow you.

The truck is parked under an enormous tank, you push a button, it would open, and all the smelly stuff would fall into the truck. Sometimes it would catch and stick. It would not want to open. His dad and granddad told him over a hundred times that when it happens, to climb up as high as you can on top of the tank, and kick the edges up there, and the tank will open. But you have to climb way up to do that, and what Dr. Gibbs did one hundred times, was to take a great big stick, get under the tank, and hit it. He would then walk over, punch the button and it would open. It worked every time – except once! He walked under the tank, took the stick, and went bang, bang---and it opened. Sixty thousand pounds of haunch manure started coming – “Oh no!” It hit him with his mouth opened.

Fortunately, some men saw it happen, jumped in and dug him out quick. He came up coughing, but he could still taste it three days later. The lesson he learned was this; “You can get away with something for a long time, but one day, your sin will find you out.”

The Beatitudes are called the Beatitudes because they all begin with; “to be something.” We are Human Beings, not Human Doings. It’s not just the talent to do something, it’s the heart – we are to be something! God says; “I want to make sure you tie together being something with doing something.”

Verse 41: “…And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain.” A Roman mile was a thousand paces, 1,520 yards. Twain is two – twice the distance. When the Son of God said these instructions to the people he was talking to, it would have shattered everything they understood as Christians. It started with the Persians when they were conquering the world. Under law, any Persian solider could grab you and make you carry anything he had for a mile. They could take your wife, children, horse, wagon, anything, and you would have to take it for one-mile, even if it was the wrong direction for you. As the Romans conquered the Persian Empire, they liked the idea of being able to grab people and be able to do with them what they wanted for one-mile, and the Romans were not nice about it. One Soldier would grab you and say, “Carry this for a mile,” and then another would say, “OK, you did it for him, now do it for me.” Sometimes, they would take you hundreds-of-miles out of the way, before they would stop harassing you.

Now Jesus says, “If they want you to go one-mile, I’m commanding you to go two.” “But Jesus, these guys are not nice, they’re harassing us, do you understand?” But Jesus says, “YOU being willing to go beyond what they ask - will change YOU.”

I’m thankful that Jesus goes beyond what I ask for? We live in a culture that does not want to go the extra mile. “But if I’m going to do the mile, man---I’ve got my rights, I’m not going to go one foot after that.” What God says is, “I want you to take your rights, and do away with them. I want you to sacrifice that spirit in you that wants to protect you. And, if they ask you to do one-mile, offer them to do two.”

Can you image if an authority told your husband, they were going to take you and your family, and he gets to take you a mile. How do you think you would respond? The command is not addressed just to this culture; it’s addressed to every child of God for all eternity.

Ask this question: “Am I the child of God that is willing to go the second-mile?” It’s a command of God. And, we’ve gotten away with not obeying that command, and things have just--- kind off worked out. So now we think we can get away with not doing it forever. A day of reckoning is coming!

Second-Mile Activity

God wants us to obey – not the first-mile, but the second-mile. We are to be willing to do more than we are asked. That’s the second mile. Here’s the first one;

Am I the second-mile Christian at home?

The Bible says, “Children obey your parents.” Are our kids willing to do the second-mile? If they don’t watch us do the second-mile, they’re not likely going to do the second-mile. We’re thrilled if they do some of what we ask. Some of what we ask is not God’s standard. His standard is that they are to obey us in everything and be willing to go the second-mile.

Wives, obey your husband – in EVERYTHING. If we submit, our heart is “I’m not just doing what he asks; I’m going the second-mile.”

We live in a culture that says, “Kids, you don’t have to do what your parents say,” and we live in a culture that says, “You don’t have to do what your husband says---that’s nonsense.” But we live in a culture that has turned its back on God.

I wonder if my family would say, “My mother is a second-mile Christian?”

We are to give ourselves to our husbands because the Bible commands us to, and I’m going to be a second-mile Christian; “I get to give myself to the one I love and it’s not a burden, it’s a privilege.” That’s what God is looking for. Is that how I am all the time? Shamefully, no! It is a command I adhere to, and I take the daily necessary steps that will provoke me, and move me further away from my flesh nature and toward obedience to God’s command for me as a wife.

Go the second-mile EVERY TIME Deborah – that’s what God is commanding me to do.

My husband is a second-miler. He loves and gives himself to me as a second-miler all the time.

We’re not getting away with being one-milers---we’re under the tank tapping it. And when it all comes undone, we’ll ask, “How did this happen.” But we’re not obeying God’s Word, and we’re not going the second-mile with our husbands. Something will eventually happen! We don’t get away with sin.

We are loosing over seventy-five percent of our children. There not leaving church to go to another, they’re leaving and not going to church at all. In excess of ninety-percent are saying, “It’s because of what I saw at home.” Oh God forgive us as parents!

I’m so burdened by the ignorant attitudes of Christian women, including myself at times. It bothers me when I go twenty-four hours without asking God if I did the right thing, or said the right thing in my home. We’re always focusing on the broken-homes through separation and divorce, and God is grieved by broken homes; but we give little regard to our own ways. The devil places blinders on our eyes, and our hearts are deceitfully wicked under our own roof. The majority of Christian women have this agenda; ME, the friends, the kids, and the husband (if I’m not too tired).

If that gets the prickles up on your neck, the truth hurts me too! We have become shamefully self-centered women in our homes, and God commands us to do the opposite. The world’s agenda is not our program, and we must get back to doing it the right way before it catches up. If our homes are not dysfunctional, they’re falling apart.

I’m going to obey and do it with a second-mile heart. It will change everything. It’s not just about the home; it’s about God’s standard of what a woman should be and it’s about doing it His way.

Everything within us is flesh driven – THANKS EVE! We resist, we will resist, and we will continue to resist going the second-mile. But that’s not God’s way!

There is always hope amidst the fiercest storms, the darkest moments, and the disarray we may be feeling; “it is never too late to do right.” Doing right, is obeying His precious command in the Book of Truths. Doing right, is laying self aside and being everything God wants us to be in our homes – despite how hurt, or how unfair it may seem. Doing right, is applying self diligently, rolling up our sleeves and toughing it out. Doing right is a matter of the heart – and we all know what’s right!

God is a “DO RIGHT” God – every time!

Turning our homes around is a step away, and a choice we must all make daily. Everything in this world is against running the home God’s way. If we keep this knowledge in the back of our minds, and move forward against the resistance of our flesh, the devil, and the world, we will be walking in the Light of God’s glory, and He will equip us for the battles we will face, and are inevitable.

The fact that I am a woman does not make me a different kind of Christian, but the fact that I am a Christian does make me a different kind of woman. For I have accepted God's ideal for me, and my whole life is an offering back to Him of all that I am and all that He wants me to be.

Christianity is not a matter of speculation, but is designed to regulate the temper of our minds and the tenor of our conversations. A great Christian lady is a good Christian lady daily; we must read our Bibles’ daily, we must pray daily, and we must deny ourselves daily. It’s not enough to just be made good, we must be made better – better women, with better attitudes, and the BEST for God in everything we do.

“Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.” Matthew 5:14 Light shows things for what they really are. This world has obscured the Light, and for the most part, women have lost direction and shunned correction. We have an influence on other women in this unclear world that has lost its way, but we have a greater influence in our homes.

Let your holy life, your pure conversation, and your faithful instruction, be everywhere seen and known, always, in all societies, in all business, at home and abroad, in prosperity and adversity, let it be seen that you are a real Christian.

I Love You,

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