Summary: The beauty of life is only possible when each performer plays his or her part well, submitting to the leader, fully cooperating with the Conductor. When this happens the music is so beautiful the whole world is draw to the Conductor/Composer.
18 Wives, submit yourselves to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord.
19 Husbands, love your wives and do not be harsh with them.
20 Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord.
21 Fathers, do not embitter your children, or they will become discouraged.
22 Slaves, obey your earthly masters in everything; and do it, not only when their eye is on you and to curry their favor, but with sincerity of heart and reverence for the Lord. 23 Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, 24 since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving. 25 Anyone who does wrong will be repaid for their wrongs, and there is no favoritism.
Imagine you’re in a performing ensemble-a symphony orchestra and choir (many who are reading have experienced this). It’s concert day, and today’s performance is special, because the conductor is also the composer of the piece we are scheduled to perform. The audience has purchased their tickets ahead of time. There is a buzz of excitement as they join from their various backgrounds and homes-some very wealthy, some highly educated, some from penurous backgrounds who simply love the music of the Composer. Some know little, but love the sound. The concert hall is packed-the event is sold out. Everyone finds their seats. The lights dim, the orchestra tunes. Silence as the Composer enters and stands at the Conductor’s podium . . .
For you, there has been a progression today.
-You put on your concert clothes, virtue, crowned by love. (verses 12-14)
-Get your heart right. (v. 15)
-Sing through your part to other performers, and your appreciation to the Conductor (vv. 16-17)
-Perform the symphony no one could pull off alone, in a cooperative dance of sound. (vv. 18-25)
The audience is stunned by the beauty. The hall is silent, then explodes in a standing ovation with cheers and adulation. Everyone in the hall wishes they were in the orchestra & choir. Everyone wants to perform with that Conductor. It is too beautiful for words (though some critics still find fault in their columns the next day).
-you go home, excited, elated, peaceful, grateful. After winding down from the adrenaline high, you sleep peacefully-a well-earned recovery from a rigourous preparation and performance.
This is life.
Our LORD is Composer and Conductor. The wife is the soprano soloist. The husband/father is the first violin/section leader. The children and servants/employees are the ensemble members. Beautiful music is created together by the community with each one doing his and her part-with all following the directions of the Conductor.
Imagine if the soprano soloist decided everyone had to follow her lead, the first violin didn’t like the tempo set by the conductor, the ensemble members thought they all knew better than the section leaders how things should be practiced and performed. Within moments the beauty would break down into cacophony. There would be no concert. The audience would rebel and feel cheated, having paid the price for a performance that turned out to be a terrible disappointment. The conductor will fire the performers and replace them with musicians who know how to work together.
The beauty of life is only possible when each performer plays his or her part well, submitting to the leader, working hard to do his or her own part, fully cooperating with the Conductor. When this happens, the music is so beautiful the whole world, the audience, is drawn to the Conductor.
Prayer for Today
Write the music of my life. Conduct every detail of movement, rhythm, dynamics and expression. Teach me to follow well. Forgive me the many times I’ve not cooperated with your composition and leadership. Enable me, by your Spirit, to be the best performer I can be-so that the world is drawn to you through the music we all produce together. Join us in loving perfection. Make my family a skillful ensemble. Make our church a famous symphony orchestra, that the world may stand up and be enamoured with your incomparable music, just as we are, and join in the singing.
In the name of Jesus, who sang with his disciples, and invites us all to the song.