"Eulogy" by Five Iron Frenzy
It's an interesting concept, because, in my opinion, the verbiage is so dark that there can't possibly be any positive connotations to it. Think about it, Paul says numerous times that we are to die, not to "just forget about it" but to die, as in cease-to-be, six-feet-under, outdoor-funeral-in the-rain kind of death.
To be clear, this isn't a promotion of self-flagellation or mutilation or some sort of track-suit kool-aid action, but rather, it's to die to our sinful selves. You see, ever since Eve tasted that pesky fruit of the knowledge of good and evil, we were overcome with a new nature, a nature that competes with the one God gave us, which allowed for us to commune directly with him in eternity with no fear of death or pain. Jesus spoke in Matthew, "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me." Jesus makes it clear that we are to strive to rid ourselves of our sinful nature to bring us back to the pre-fall period where God walked among us, and spoke to us by name.
So fathers, I'm asking you a question, what does this concept of denying one's self mean to you?
Seriously think about it. What are some things that pains you to go without, because, let's face it, death hurts. Death is something that's permenant (save for the resurrection in Jesus). Do you have a problem with alcohol controlling you? Do you only know dirty jokes? Is South Park constantly on in your home? Are you having an affair? These things must die to you for you to follow Jesus. There's no middle ground. Stumbling blocks to dying to self don't have to be socially negative things, do you work so much that your children forget who you are? Are you living for your retirement pension? Are you working out physically so much that you have no time to work out spiritually?
As a father, you are the head of the household--a topic that will run rampant on this blog. In this position you are responsible for the spiritual wellfare of your family, but how can you be in that position when you struggle with sin? How can you get rid of sin unless you are dying to yourself daily? Hourly? Minute-ly? The bottom line, the spirit of the message, is that the struggle only ends when either you take your last breath or Jesus returns, which ever happens first. Sanctification, unlike salvation, which I believe is instantaneous, takes lifetimes to work through, and that's the drive for following Jesus. The process of becoming holy starts with you and a little prayer where you give your eulogy on a daily basis.
Prayer for the week:
Dear God, I'm tired of living this double life, part of me wants to be in the world and part of me wants to be with You. I thank you for sending your Son to sacrifice himself for me. Give me the strength to follow that example, as the head of my house, and to deny my sinful nature to lift You up and be Your example."