In Numbers 2:2 it describes how the children of Israel camped in the wilderness: each man under his standard with the banners of his family. These banners were essentially flags depicting four creatures, a lion, an ox, a man and an eagle, and the 12 tribes were to camp under their relevant banner.
Just as each family camped with their tribe under one of four banners in the wilderness, it is evident when we examine the account of the early church in the New Testament that there were primarily four types of houses – praying houses, evangelistic houses, shepherding houses and teaching houses. And so it is today.
As well as depicting the lives of great men and women of faith such as Abraham, Moses and King David (e.g. Hebrews 11), the bible is also littered with the accounts of individual households, everyday people (e.g. Romans 16), who humbly went about their lives serving the Lord and ministering to the needs of others.
In the historical account of the early church, we read about many households, including the household of Jason, the household of Simon the Tanner, the household of Lydia, the household of Mary, the household of Titius Justus - the list goes on. And as we look more closely at each of these households, we begin to see four main types of households emerge (i.e. house of prayer, evangelistic house, teaching house, shepherding house) and become vital to the life and grow...
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... whatever we feel like. Instead, Jesus is saying, follow your unique way, the path that He has ordained for you and your household from before the beginning of time.
Irrespective of the current state of your household, God has a special and unique plan for you and your family. He wants us to be effective households in His Kingdom, households that have an impact on those around them, not households that just float along aimlessly in life, with no direction and no purpose. We don’t want our houses to be futile places where we just come and rest, recuperate, and recharge our batteries for the next tiring day at work. God has more for us and our household than to be stuck on such a futile treadmill.
Instead, God wants us to be redeemed to be truly effective and fruitful households, where we live under the banner that He has planned for our life and our house.
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