I read an article by Kathy Keller, co-author of “The Meaning Of Marriage” with Timothy Keller.

Here’s a excerpt of that article.

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There are only three ways an unequal marriage can turn out, (and by unequal I am willing to stretch a point and include genuine, warm Christians who want to marry an in-name-only Christian, or someone very, very far behind them in Christian experience and growth):

1. In order to be more in sync with your spouse, the Christian will have to push Christ to the margins of his or her life. This may not involve actually repudiating the faith, but in matters such as devotional life, hospitality to believers (small group meetings, emergency hosting of people in need), missionary support, tithing, raising children in the faith, fellowship with other believers—those things will have to be minimized or avoided in order to preserve peace in the home.

2. Alternatively, if the believer in the marriage holds on to a robust Christian life and practice, the non-believing PARTNER will have to be marginalized. If he or she can’t understand the point of Bible study and prayer, or missions trips, or hospitality, then he or she can’t or won’t participate alongside the believing spouse in those activities. The deep unity and oneness of a marriage cannot flourish when one partner cannot fully participate in the other person’s most important commitments.

3. So either the marriage experiences stress and breaks up; or it experiences stress and stays together, achieving some kind of truce that involves one spouse or the other capitulating in some areas, but which leaves both parties feeling lonely and unhappy.

Does this sound like the kind of marriage you want? One that strangles your growth in Christ or strangles your growth as a couple, or does both?

Think back to that off-cited passage in 2 Corinthians 6:14 about being “unequally yoked.” Most of us no longer live in an agrarian culture, but try to visualize what would happen if a farmer yoked together, say, an ox and a donkey. The heavy wooden yoke, designed to harness the strength of the team, would be askew, as the animals are of different heights, weights, walk at different speeds and with different gaits. The yoke, instead of harnessing the power of the team to complete the task, would rub and chafe BOTH animals, since the load would be distributed unequally.

An unequal marriage is not just unwise for the Christian, it is also unfair to the non-Christian, and will end up being a trial for them both.

To read the whole article, click here.

I tucked my kids to bed tonight.

We usually have devotions before they go to bed.

Our topic tonight was making major decisions.

I told them that in life, they will be making 3 major ones.

These are the 3 that I told them.

1. WHO WILL YOU SERVE?

Will you serve Jesus, self or the devil?

Joshua challenged God’s people, “choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve … But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.” (Joshua 24:15).

This is the first and most important decision you’ll ever make.

And this is one decision you cannot keep putting off.  Remember, not deciding is a decision. You’ve decided not to accept Him into your life. We are either for Him or against Him.  There’s no middle ground.

2. HOW WILL YOU SERVE?

I told my kids that they will have to make a decision how they’ll serve Jesus.

It doesn’t necessarily mean being in full-time ministry as a pastor or a missionary because you can serve Him wherever you are – in athletics, the arts, banking, insurance industry… as in WHEREVER.

Serving Him is not a matter of location but posture of the heart.

3. WITH WHOM WILL YOU SERVE HIM?

I told them that this will be a million years from now. Haha!

But I did say that they will get married one day and making this decision of with whom they’ll serve Jesus with is a critical one.

So I laid my hands on them and prayed for their future spouses – that as early as now, God would prepare the person they’ll spend the rest of their lives with as much as God is preparing them too.

But again, that will still be a million years from now.

Parents have many job descriptions – from driving to disciplining, providing to preparing, teaching to training, changing diapers to changing flat tires of their teen’s car.

But of all the different things a parent has to do, the most important thing is to make sure that they point their kids to Jesus.

All the education, food on the table, discipline, travels around the world, and every provision a parent can admirably give to their kids are in vain if they don’t meet Christ.

And I say that unapologetically.

Nothing else will compare to see your kids walk with God.

Our kids can get athletic gold medals, make it to the dean’s list, get academic scholarships, land a good job, generate millions in income but if Christ is no where in the radar, all of it is useless.

Paul says to live is Christ but to die is gain. (Phil. 1:21)

To live for anything else is in vain because to die will be a major loss for we cannot bring any of it to the next life.

I brought my 12 year old to the Ignite Youth conference hoping she can encounter Christ in an amazing way. Hope she did.

What then is my goal? To point my kids to Jesus so they can encounter Him and have a living and loving relationship with Him.

Worship Time during IGNITE 2011

Because it was semestral break, we took the kids out of town.  With us were the Sy’s (Dennis, Thammie and kids), Marge, Teri and Bruce.

As a family, we often take the opportunity to take off when we can because schedules have been crazy these days.  Even our kids are now ‘busy’ – from baseball to musical theater, TFT to piano lessons.

During one of our conversations over breakfast, Thammie asked me a question, “What are your core values as a family?”

I really didn’t have a nice, carved out answer.  I guess all these years Jenn and I have operated on instincts and never really wrote down our ‘core values’.  I know many have written books these type of stuff like Patrick Lencioni who wrote a book entitled “Three Big Questions For A Frantic Family”.  I know that James Dobson have written a few books on these too.

While driving home, I thought about that question again and I began listing down guiding principles we worked with through the years as a family.

1. Love God.

If we can teach our kids to do this, then I feel we’re on the right direction.  We desire to help them develop a relationship with God.  We feel that that is the most important task we have as parents – to connect them with God.  We won’t be there for them all the time, but if they have a relationship with their Heavenly Father, then we know that they’ll be just fine.

2. Love family.

Respect. Compassion. Love for family.  I guess that’s why we invest (not spend) on family vacations though we have an old, ugly, clunky Crosswind.  Memories have been a priority for us.  We may not have a lot to leave them in terms of inheritance, but memories through times together is definitely on the top of our list.

Seeing my kids love each other and look out for each other is definitely another important one for us.

3. Love others.

Service. Empathy. We want to teach our family not to just think about themselves, which we already are are very good at.  Life is really not about us.  It’s about God and the people He loves.

4. Love learning.

With the influx of information today, the accumulation of it is no longer the key to success.  Everything is now ‘googlable’.

However, processing and filtering of information is now the name of the game.  Critical thinking has never been as critical.  If we are successful in inputing love for learning, then I feel they will accomplish what God has designed them to be and do.