If you have ever been through the process of buying a home, one of the first things you look at or have inspected is the foundation. You want to make sure that the house you buy is standing on a solid foundation. The discovery of a crack or weak foundation is often a sign that makes us look the other way, even when it might be our “dream home”.
In the book of Colossians chapter 3:18-4:1, The Apostle Paul echo’s his teaching in Ephesians 5 regarding the instructions for Christian households. In both passages Paul outlines the important characteristics each member (wives, husbands, children) must live out so that they are living in a way that is pleasing to the Lord. The role or function of the Christian family as Paul describes it, serves as the true foundation that was originally intended in the beginning. Paul wrote to a group of Christians who were being influenced by false teachers, and in the same way today our self-interested societies have broken down and rebuilt many weaker foundations to define the family unit into what serves them the best. Paul uses some heavy-duty words like submit, love and obey to describe the characteristics of what should be found in a Christian household. Christ modelled this behavior during His time on earth in His relationship with His Father and we in turn look to emulate these things in our most personal connections as evidence of our own relationship with Christ. Just as these foundational elements cemented the bonds between God the Father and Son, when they are applied to human relationships they create firm footings for strong families to grow on.
I had the privilege of growing up in what I would described as a healthy Christian household according to the standards that Paul describes. Now, with that being said, our family has its share of quirks and tales of “potholed roads” just like most every family. We do not live in a perfect world, we must “devote ourselves to prayer” (Col 4:2) like Paul says so that the love we have for one another will exemplify the perfection of Christ’s love for us. Husbands must pray for their wives, wives for their husbands, and husbands and wives for their children. Our role, our function as a family is to bring glory to God and be solid foundation that others see and strive to build.