A Wife’s Behavior Has Influence
A wife's lifestyle can win over an unsaved husband. The outward appearance is not as important as how you act. A holy life has the fruits of the Holy Spirit.
Alright, thank you very much. And hello again dear radio friends. How in the world are you?You know, when I say, “Hello again,” I think of hundreds of you. It’s like a parade in my mind. Have you ever had that experience? And I see you people whom I’ve known through the years, and folk whom I have not yet met, and may not meet until we get to heaven – but who have written to me about their lives. And I feel as though I know them anyway. And I see you all there when I say, “Hello.” And I whisper a prayer, “O God, make this one a blessing to these friends.” May He answer that prayer today.
We’re looking at 1 Peter 3. And Peter’s been talking to wives and husbands. He, he talked to servants – employees; now he’s talking to wives and husbands. It occurs to me that the areas of conflict in human inter-personal relations show up precisely at these levels, possibly more than any others. What are they? Employee-employer, and wife and husband. You see, it’s like housework. The lady said she didn’t mind housework, but it was so daily. And you go to work every day, and you see the same people. And you hear the same comments from your supervisor, your boss, and you experience the same working conditions. And sometimes it begins to rub the epidermis of your spirit a little raw.
And the same thing is true of, of husband-wife relationships. It’s every day, everyday. And you are, you become aware as I said to you the, during the last broadcast, of faults which may be relatively small, but which seem amplified because they happen all the time, you know? So small a thing as, as leaving, leaving the, the cover off of the, off of the, the jam jar after you’ve smeared around it with, with a spoon that you carelessly used. (Laughs) Do those ever bother you? I don’t know where I started with it, but all my life I have been bothered if people help themselves to jam and, and, and slop a little up it on the edge, and then just leave it that way. (Laughs)
That’s crazy, isn’t it? But you know, these are things that get amplified in your thinking. And they, they get to be big problems. Well, what are you going to do about it? He says, “Everything depends on what you’re trying to accomplish.” He said, “If you’ve got a mate that isn’t saved, obey not the Word,” it says. “If you’ve got a mate that isn’t saved, what are you trying to win? The argument, or the person?” He says, “That they may also without the Word…” If they’re not going to read the Bible, they’re reading you,” says he. “Be won by the lifestyle of the wife. While they behold…”
Hey, He’s watching you, beloved friend. Watching you. What is He watching? Your holy lifestyle. Chaste conversation – is our word ‘holy – lifestyle, coupled with fear. Now that isn’t the, the craven fear, “I’m afraid of you.” That’s respect, respect. And then he says, “He watches how you look, who’s adorning.” What really makes you beautiful in His sight? Is it what you put on, or is it the person you are? Huh? Something to think about, isn’t it?
By the way I don’t take this third verse to mean that you must never wear earrings or, or, a wedding, or, or an engagement ring, or have your hair set. I don’t think that’s what he’s saying. What he is saying is, “Don’t depend on that to make you an attractive, loving person, because it won’t.” All of us know people who are well dressed. A fashion plate. But they’re, they’re not nice people, they’re not ‘easy to get along with’ people. They’re not the kind of people that draw you to themselves, you know that, don’t you?
So he says, “Don’t depend upon what you can put on yourself to win a, another individual to your Lord.” Real beauty isn’t what you put on. It’s what Jesus puts into your life, Himself dwelling within you, and shining out of you. “Let your light so shine,” Jesus said, “that they may see your good works and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” There is really nothing more beautiful than a Christian woman living for her Lord Jesus every day, and letting her light shine for God.
Don’t worry about the length of your nose or the condition of your hair – whether or not it’s straight or curly. Personally I’d settle for hair, mine has long since departed. I used to have waves in my hair. Now there’s nothing left but a beach. I used to tell people, “God likes my face so much that He’s clearing off space for another.” (Laughs) Don’t worry about the shape of your nose or the curliness or lack of it, of your hair. Give more thought to the kind of person you are inside, because that’s what people read. They don’t read the Bible, they read you while they behold… That word ‘behold’ isn’t just a glance. That means ‘constantly observing’. Constantly observing the kind of person you are.
Now we come to a, a description then of what is a holy life. It’s a life full of the Holy Spirit. How is that defined? Galatians 5:22-23, “The fruit of the Spirit,” says Paul the Apostle, “is love.” That’s agape love, Calvary love, John 3:16 kind of love, God’s love. The fruit of the Spirit is God’s love in your life. Romans 5:5, “The love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost who is given unto us.”
The fruit of the Spirit is love. And then joy. Joy is that vast ineffable sense of well-being that comes not from circumstances, but from a right relationship with a person, your blessed Lord and His Word. “These things,” Jesus said, “these things have I spoken unto you that My joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.” It’s the joy of obeying the Father’s will. “Who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is now set down at the right hand of the Majesty on High.”
“My joy,” said He, “is to do the will of Him that sent Me, and finish His work.” Love and joy. The joy of being subject to the Father’s will, and doing what He wants so that circumstances don’t ruffle you, because you know that you’re secure in the eternal purposes of God this very minute. That’s something the people read in your life. Why is it that you’re not broken up? Why is it that you’re not all upset? Why is it that you’re not striving like others, to, to win a position for yourself? Because you’ve got joy. You’ve got a right relationship with the Lord Jesus, and you’re doing the will of God. And that plugs you in to the eternal purpose of God.
Peace is the third word that he gives, as the fruit of the Spirit. Love, joy, peace. That of course is the, the constant calm that is more than a calm. It’s a right relationship. “Peace I leave with you, My peace give I unto you; not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” Real peace. How does that come about? In everything, by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving. “Let your request be made known unto God, and the peace of God which passeth all understanding shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” It comes about through dwelling in the Word of God.
“Great peace are they that love Thy law, and nothing shall offend them.” It comes through having your mind stayed on your Lord. “Thou would keep Him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee, because he trusteth in Thee.”
Now we’re talking about what people read in your life. The presence of your Lord, the Holy Spirit of God. They, they read your holy lifestyle. What produces it? The Holy Spirit. How is that manifested? Love, joy, peace, long suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, self-control. These are the things that people read in your life if they won’t read the Bible. And if you’re married to a wife or a husband who’s an unsaved person, don’t lecture. Live Christ every minute, before that person.
“They behold your holy manner of life coupled with fear”. Now that, I take that to, to mean our idea of respect. It’s not that you’re afraid of him, and you duck every time he comes by. It’s that you respect him because he is number one, made in the image of God, even though it’s a marred image. Number two, he is your husband. And the Bible has, teaches throughout the Word of God that the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the Church. Look up Ephesians 5 to find that that is so.
He deserves respect for the person he is, and for the position he holds, even though as I said a broadcast or so ago, some people are married to adult children, and you have to sort of watch out for them and cope with them. Some people never grow up. And when they’re married, they bring those childish traits into the marriage, and it makes it ever more difficult. We all realize that, don’t we? But having said that, you’re not going to win anybody to your Lord by criticizing him or her. Respect for the person that he is, and the position that he holds.
And I’ve noticed this too. If I’m criticizing somebody inside, even though I don’t say a word, my attitude shows. It telegraphs itself somehow or other. Can you tell when somebody likes you? And can you also tell when someone is just putting up with you, and coping with you? You can, isn’t that true? See, we telegraph what we’re thinking by our, our very attitudes. And there’s an aura of influence around each human being that, that tells on us.
You ever forget your wife’s wedding anniversary and come home without a present, gentlemen, and you won’t have to say a word. When you get inside the door, you won’t have to say a word. But you’ll, you’ll find that the weather has suddenly turned chilly. Even man’s best friend, your little house dog, four-footed, flea-bearing, loud-mouthed, dirt-bearing, man’s best friend, Fido. Somebody comes to the door that is afraid of dogs and, and dislikes them, what does Fido do? He immediately growls and tries to act like a lion. Nobody said a word. He knows.
There is an aura of influence around each life. And so if I’m going to win somebody to the Lord, I’d better start out respecting him or her for the person that he or she really is, and better still, the person that he or she can be by the grace of God. Well, we’ll get at this some more the next time we’re together. Pray your way through the day, beloved. That’s the way to keep in touch with God all day long.
Dear Father today, help us specialize in winning people with every bit of holy living, and with all of the attitudes of our hearts. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.
Till I meet you once again by way of radio, walk with the King today, and be a blessing.
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