"Blood is thicker than milk"? I know I hadn't - until this past Sunday that is.
I had always heard the European's version of the expression which states "Blood is thicker than water", implying that family bonds are stronger than any other thing.
Well, the Middle Eastern culture says it the first way, "Blood is thicker than milk" and, I have to admit, when I first heard the pastor say that it was immediately added into the list of "things that make you go Hmm". (And yes, I have instantly transported myself back in time as soon as that song flashed in my head. I was about 15 years old then and did you see how she is dressed? Makes me think of a post I just did but I digress.)
Anyway, back to blood being thicker than milk.
Covenant and keeping covenants is extremely important in the Middle Eastern culture (someting we could learn from them, don't you think?). And so, this expression means that a blood covenant made with someone has a stronger bond than the bond shared even by siblings who have shared their mother's milk.
In the past two years, I have been learning a lot about covenant and the covenant we have with God, with our fellow Christians.
Have you ever heard where the tradition of a newly wed husband carrying his bride over the threshold came from? It came from the Middle Eastern culture and where they performed their sacrifices to God - on the alter (which, at that time happened to be the threshold to their homes). If you step over the threshold of a Middle Eastern home, you have entered into covenant with them and they will protect you - even unto death. I mean look at what Lot did for the two angels who entered into his house.
When you walk into someone's house, cross that threshold, you are entering into a covenant with them that you will not be bringing strife or contempt into their home, that you will build them up and not tear them down.
That same would hold true then for when we cross the threshold into our Father's house; we have entered into a covenant with Him and with all those who have entered into covenant with Him. I guess that means that we need to guard our speech, our attitudes and thoughts towards our church family. We should be building each other up, not tearing each other down.
People who bring strife and contempt into your life, and try to tear you down, are not in covenant with you; no matter what they say with the one-side of their face...
I just really thought that was an interesting expression and it has really had me thinking this past week. What do you think?