‘Living well’ truly is an art form. We tend to immediately think of wealth and possession when we hear the term, but the reality is that a lot more people live well without wealth than those who have financial means.
For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
Matthew 6:21 (CSB)
Treasure is another term that we quickly mis-associate with the trappings of wealth. Jesus pointed out in Matthew chapter six that where we place value, that is where our passion resides. One can amass great treasure and not have any money trinkets or bobbles.
It begins here…
Children, obey your parents in the Lord, because this is right. Honor your father and mother, which is the first commandment with a promise, so that it may go well with you and that you may have a long life in the land.
Ephesians 6:1-3 (CSB)
I’m 62 years old; I am still the child of my mother and father. Just because you’ve got a few years under your belt doesn’t dismiss you from this charge we find in Ephesians. Your mom and dad might have passed on at this point in your life but regardless, we still need to conduct ourselves in a manner that honors them.
The promise of this commandment points to things going well with us and having a long life. Yes, there are those who honor their parents and yet live surprisingly short physical lives, but what is being conveyed here is living well and not so much the duration of time that one is physically alive.
The way we were crafted by the Creator dictates that we will have long lives because our lives traverse through this physical period of existence and then on into our eternal state. Living well is to take in that which is good and rejecting that which is not. Living well would indicate that our focus isn’t necessarily fixed on the physical world we live in but transfixed on the things of the Creator.
The term ‘Creator’ encapsulates the individuals of the Trinity and is synonymous with the Triune God. Tomorrow we’ll talk in more detail on this, but it suffices to say, that living well describes the richness of our existence and not the condition of our bank account.
I would propose that living well starts with our parents just as is suggested in Ephesians. In a more general sense, our families which include our parents, but also includes the other members of our clan and our extended families.
Family is what we make it. The more we focus on ourselves the less we have available to focus on the important things like family. The other thing about family is that it takes on different forms such as the family we are grafted into through our relationship with Jesus. This is the other end of the definition of family and it is massive.
Taking on the concept of our Church family and then the family of God that we have become a part of, we can see how this passage in Ephesians fits. God the Father is now our Abba Father. That loving compassionate father figure of the God Head. We are to honor Him in the living of this life as well.
But then what about our mother? Who would that be in the family of God?
For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.
This mystery is profound, but I am talking about Christ and the church. To sum up, each one of you is to love his wife as himself, and the wife is to respect her husband.
Ephesians 5:31-33 (HCSB)
So, then our heavenly mother is the Church. This isn’t pinned to any particular denomination, but instead the body of believers in the grace yielding power of the blood of the Savior. The blood He shed in our place when he took on the sins of the world, so that we might have this relationship, this family, and live well eternally.
Finally brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable—if there is any moral excellence and if there is anything praiseworthy—dwell on these things.
Philippians 4:8 (CSB)
Our joy isn’t dependent on our circumstances and in the same way, living well isn’t dependent on riches or fame. Our treasure is where our heart is, and if that treasure is composed of the incorruptible treasures afforded by our relationship with the Creator, we are rich beyond our wildest imagination and ‘Living Well’.
In His Grace,