Scripture: verse 1
Children, what you should do in union with the Lord is obey your parents, for this is right.
Observation: Having spent half a chapter explaining how our new identity in Messiah should be reflected in marriage, Paul goes on to discuss how it changes other relationships, including parent-child and owner-slave.
When I was little, I was apparently fairly resistant to most of the normal forms of discipline, so my mom would sit me down and explain, quite rationally, that God had created communities to work a certain way for the benefit of everyone who participated and that children obeying their parents was part of how authority worked. Apparently, it worked.
We are called to obey authority in unity with the Lord. Our new identity – being one flesh with Messiah – does not take us out of community or out of normal human relationships. Instead, unity with Messiah helps us to fit into community more strongly than ever. We become a pillar of strength for the people around us, by doing our job and fulfilling our calling.
Being with God doesn’t mean ignoring humans. It means taking people more seriously than ever, because they are also part of God’s body.
Application: Obey authority. Support the community. Dedicate time and energy to pursuing relationships with others. Enter your calling in unity with the Lord.
Prayer: Father, thank you for calling me to be where I am. Thank you for making me a wife and mother and daughter and sister and friend. Help me to take those relationships seriously, and to reach out with love towards those who need it. Amen.