cross-skyNumbers 2:2 ‘The Israelites are to camp round the tent of meeting some distance from it, each of them under their standard and holding the banners of their family.’

Standard of living refers to the level of wealth, comfort, material goods and necessities available to a certain socioeconomic class in a certain geographic area. The standard of living includes factors such as income, quality and availability of employment, class disparity, poverty rate, quality and affordability of housing, hours of work required to purchase necessities, gross domestic product, inflation rate, number of holiday days per year, affordable (or free) access to quality healthcare, quality and availability of education, life expectancy, incidence of disease, cost of goods and services, infrastructure, national economic growth, economic and political stability, political and religious freedom, environmental quality, climate and safety. The standard of living is closely related to quality of life.

God has a standard of living for all of those that have chosen to accept Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior. Jesus said, “I have come to give you life and life more abundantly!” When God delivered his people from slavery and established them as a nation, he gave Moses instruction on how each family was to position themselves for the way God wanted them to live.

  1. They were to camp around the tent of meeting. They built there home around the place where God met with his people. Our lives should be built around the church not the church around our lives. It is the epicenter of our values that govern our lives. The church is that sacred institution that serves as an anchor to our community. Every family needs to be a part of a bible believing church.
  2. Each family living under his standard. I’ve already mentioned what a standard of living was but what does it mean to live under a standard? Standard was a family flag. It symbolized what each family stood for. I blessed a home this weekend an in the hallway was a list of family rules or values for that house like; “there will be prayer in this house. We believe in encouraging one another…” There has to be some distinctive standards your family lives by.
  3. Each family lives under its banner. The banner was a symbol rich tapestry that was lifted up representing three tribes that the different families fell under. When your banner was lifted that meant that it was time for the different families to come together to fight. As Christians we all stand under the banner of Jesus Christ. If we can ever overcome our tribal differences and unite nothing would be able to stop us! We are divided by different denominational tribes and are divided over doctrinal differences. But what it looks like for different tribes to come together to fight against crime, come up with an economic strategy to create jobs for poor and minority people, secure educational reform? What if we stop fighting each other and start fighting for each other? Your tribe might be good at reaching lost souls. That tribe might be good with discipleship. That tribe might be good at community development. Why can’t we work together instead of labeling our differences as deficiencies?

It’s time for us to raise our standard of living by making the church our epicenter, defining the Christ centered values our families live by, and tribes fighting the worlds wicked problems together instead of acting wickedly and fighting one another. When the enemy comes in like a flood the Lord will lift up a standard against him!

Dear God,

Please help us to raise the standard of living by surrendering our lives to Jesus! In you oh God we live, move, and have our being. In you there is life and fullness of Joy. Help me and my family to live up to your standards instead of conforming to the patterns of this world. I am ready along with my family and tribe to follow you into war on crime, poverty, injustice, and reform. Here I am Lord; send me!

In Jesus Name,

Amen