"If you do not love the bride, you do not love the Savior." ~ Voddie Baucham
Time management is something I have always struggled with. Truth be told, it is probably something everyone struggles with to some extent. This morning I was listening to a sermon by Dr. Voddie Baucham and the line I quoted above really stood out to me. "If you do not love the bride (speaking Christ's bride, the church), you do not love the Savior. He spoke of how it isn't enough to just serve Christ in your little closet. You must also love the bride as He loves the bride. Your top priority is not only to serve Christ, but to see Him worshipped among the nations.
I personally want that to be my first priority, but sometimes in the midst of everything I loose sight of that top priority. Thinking of it in terms of if I don't "see Him worshipped among the nations" and show concern for His bride thenI do not love Him...that really changes the way I look at life. At what I want to do, versus that which I have to do.
Recently I have been thinking a lot about marriage. Having just seen my older brother marry and having friends preparing to make that same commitment, I have begun to look a marriage in a different light. I see it more and more as it was meant to be seen, as a reflection of Christ's love for His bride, the church. As that reflection, marriage is a union that calls both parties involved to become more selfless, to be more concerned about the needs of the other than about their own wants. Marriage is a reflection of Christ's love for His bride. He was selfless when He died on the cross to redeem us, so stands to reason that I, as His child, am also called to be selfless.
After all, you do not just get married and all of the sudden become selfless. Selflessness is something that must be nurtured throughout our lives. How does this apply to the topic at hand? Well, it means we are called to be selfless or Christlike. When we are Christ-centered we will want to be about our Father's business. We will desire to serve Him in every area of life, but we will not stop there. Our desire will also be to see Him made known to the nations and worshiped by all. Once this longing fills our heart, we should not let it get pushed aside for things that we may want to do, or even what others may want us to do. This is not a choice that is left to us. We are not to serve Christ only if we want to, and to see that He is worshipped among the nations if we want to. No, we are called to do this. It is something we have to do. If we do not do it, then we are walking in rebellion and sin.
The next time I am tempted to push aside the importance of loving Christ's bride, I pray I remember to keep my priorities straight. First, I do what I have to, and then when I have done that and as He provides I can do those things that I want to do. Those things that may be good, but are not best right here and right now. There is no joy in serving self, but there is unfathomable joy in serving our Savior and "singing" His praises to the nations so that they may join in the song and lift their voices in fervent worship to He, who alone, is worthy to be praised.