Friday, October 26, 2007

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Oh, how time flies...

Life's been very busy. But that's good, now isn't it? When we're about our duties, it leaves little time for us to be involved in nonsense and wickedness. You know the saying about the idle mind and the devil's playground, right?

Blink, and another week went by without updating my blog. I'm worried sometimes that both my readers will get too upset to check back again!

It's time for the lightning round --

1. What has been growing in Jerry's front yard (having already grown in the back yard), which although it will bring more work to take care of, is yet a welcomed addition?

Answer: Lawn.

2. What unnecessary product, that almost everyone uses, has still has not touched Jerry's hair since late March 2007?

Answer: Shampoo.

3. What did Jerry get last night which he plans on wearing on ocassion for a long long time?

Answer: His Shureido black belt (obi), made in and shipped from Okinawa, the birthplace of Karate. It is of much better quality of most belts one wears as one is going through the ranks. This is the kind of belt that will get old and tattered with use, because it lasts so long.

4. What upcoming event is having the Waybrights very excited?

Answer: A visit from a Covenanter minister!

Ok, enough of that. In other news:

My wife may want to hold burglars at gunpoint on a regular basis, if you can make them clean up the house!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

The Importance of Gentleness and Kindness Towards the Wife

In the last post, I pointed out some helpful things from Calvin on anger in general. Continuing with adding to my thoughts (typing this stuff out helps me get it straight in my own head), I hope now to share some helpful material specifically addressing anger from a man towards his wife.

Sometimes your wife makes you angry, right? (crickets chirping)

It's ok, guys. This is a safe place. You just read, I'll take the heat for writing it.

It seems to me that women are somewhat like delicate flowers, which do not easily rebound once trampled upon. Now, no man would trample on flowers and expect them to bounce back to the same state in which they formerly were. And shall we emotionally trample our wives, and expect them to recover from that to their undamaged state, and be all lovey-dovey with us again? Sir, you might have more success bringing back those flowers you crushed!

I Peter 3:7 --
Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.
Husbands must have a degree of knowledge to rightly dwell with their wives. Part of that knowledge is how to deal with those weaknesses that are of a womanly nature. I won't get into them specifically, so as to not provoke my female readers to anger! You think to yourselves what those weaknesses might be. In the meantime, let me quote some stuff I didn't write, so that I have an out. Well, let me quote it because I think it's good.

The Geneva Bible notes on this passage point out four arguments made here.

He also teaches husbands their duties, that is, that the more understanding and wisdom they have, the more wisely and circumspectly they behave themselves.... The more wisdom the husband has, the more circumspectly he must behave himself in bearing those inconveniences, which through the woman's weakness often cause trouble both to the husband and the wife.

The second argument: because the wife nonetheless is weaker by nature than the man, she is an excellent instrument of the man, made for far more excellent uses: upon which it follows that she is not therefore to be neglected, because she is weak, but on the contrary she ought to be so much more cared for.


The third argument: for that they are equal in that which is the most important (that is to say, in the benefit of eternal life) who otherwise are unequal concerning the leadership and conduct at home, and therefore they are not to be despised although they are weak.


The fourth argument: All fighting and rebuking must be avoided, because they hinder prayers and the whole service of God, to which both the husband and wife are equally called.
Ok, fellas. Argument #1 says that the more wisdom we have, the more careful we must be with our wives. As Calvin notes that husbands must "remember that they need prudence to do rightly their duty. And doubtless many foolish things must be endured by them, many unpleasant things must be borne with." Knowledge, wisdom, prudence, to walk circumspectly, carefully, to be understanding towards our wives. When they make us angry, even if we are right that the behavior which our wives are doing is squirrelly, or even outright bad, we must remember that they have weaknesses. They may not look like your weaknesses, men. But she's a woman and not a man, and that's to be expected. Don't get haughty, you have your own weaknesses and your own set of problems that come with those weaknesses. Just remember that you're dealing with a delicate creature in your wife.

Argument #2 says that those same weaknesses that may make us mad sometimes, stem from her feminine nature, THE DIFFERENCES OF WHICH YOU CERTAINLY MUST APPRECIATE! Those "weaknesses" of a woman (when compared to a man) are beautiful, wonderful, ravishing, and are to be cherished, protected, honored, and cared for. No, a woman is not a man, but I don't want to be married to a man either. A flower is not a hammer, and is comparatively weak, but it's much prettier to look at, softer to touch, and smells much better. Verschte?

Argument #3 lets us know that though in regards to their feminine nature, and in regards to the subordinate nature of their duties, they are "weak," yet in the most important issue of salvation in Christ, we are equal. Shall we despise our equals in Christ for their weaknesses in this life? Shame on us.

Argument #4 tells us that all fighting with and yelling at our wives needs to STOP. It serves no purpose but to hinder our spiritual duties.

So let's be more careful to have this knowledge, this prudence, that Scripture would have us have concerning our wives. Let's learn to be gentle with them, and caring towards them, rather than harsh, loud, angry, nasty and unloving.

"Nothing destroys the friendship of life more than contempt; nor can we really love any but those whom we esteem; for love must be connected with respect." -- John Calvin.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Something on Anger

I KNOW I'm not the only man on earth who has ever struggled with episodes of sinful anger. Especially when I'm tired, or I have other things on my mind, or I feel overwhelmed by life, I can find myself being too too quick to anger -- especially with the kids. Anger with kids can be especially dangerous, as the boys could potentially learn to act in the same angry fashion as the father, and the girls can be emotionally crushed and damaged by a father's anger.

As a reminder to myself, and hopefully as a help to others, I'm going to post a section from John Calvin's Commentary on Ephesians 4:26. He writes,

There are three faults by which we offend God in being angry. The first is, when our anger arises from slight causes, and often from no cause whatever, or at least from private injuries or offenses. The second is, when we go beyond the proper bounds, and are hurried into intemperate excesses. The third is, when our anger, which ought to have been directed against ourselves or against sins, is turned against our brethren. Most appropriately, therefore, did Paul, when he wished to describe the proper limitation of anger, employ the well-known passage, Be ye angry, and sin not. We comply with this injunction, if the objects of our anger are sought, not in others, but in ourselves, -- if we pour out our indignation against our own faults. With respect to others, we ought to be angry, not at their persons, but at their faults; nor ought we to be excited to anger by private offenses, but by zeal for the glory of the Lord. Lastly, our anger, after a reasonable time, ought to be allowed to subside, without mixing itself with the violence of carnal passions.

So, to review... we sin in our anger when --

1). We are angered easily, by slight things. When we are too easily offended by a cross look, a smirk, a poorly chosen phrase, a sloppy job, an accident, a personal insult, and all these kinds of little things that ultimately are meaningless, and are only offensive to us if we think too highly of ourselves.

2). Our anger, even if justified, goes beyond proper limits. When we are inappropriately and disproportionately angry. When we are furious and explosive.

3). The anger is directed at the wrong target. Anger should be directed at a problem, not at a person. Sin is the problem. OUR OWN sin is the primary problem.

We are not sinfully angry when --

1). Our anger is directed at our own sin, and not at other people.

2). Our anger, when appropriately aroused with respect to others, is aimed at the sin of others, and not at their persons.

3). Our anger is aroused not due to personal offense, but by zeal for the Lord and His glory.

4). Our anger is allowed to subside without mixing it with sinful violence.

I thought this quote was helpful in understanding and controlling anger. I hope others find it helpful too.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Our songs

Some people just know how to write our songs. That's a good songwriter, one that makes you go, "Hey, that's MY song!" Not that everything in the song matches something in our lives, but the whole gist is just so familiar.

Mom's song:

Dad's song:

The bedtime song:

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Before and After

I'm looking through my pictures, and it seems that I failed to capture in a photograph the way the yard looked when we bought the house. That being the case, the "before" picture below, is still sort of an "after" picture, as it is after I chainsawed two rows of Burning Bushes, a few trees, had some people come and take all the stuff they wanted to take, and moved a whole bunch of rocks and cement pavers. Nevertheless, Behold!



Now we need to get the front yard done!