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Thursday, October 18, 2012

How to Begin to Conquer Marital Battles: Pick Up the Word of God

Today's Post is another chapter from my book, "Am I My Husband's Eve?"  Although this book is primarily meant for women, I hope men will obtain some sort of understanding regarding the issues women struggle with that leave them broken and confused as to how to heal and where to begin.  I know this is a long post, but I am certain you will gain knowledge and understanding that may be invaluable for saving your marriage.

My husband had grown up in a Christian church and I in a Catholic church and there were numerous differences, too many to count in fact.  This was one more area in which we had never explored our differences prior to considering marriage.  Neither one of us was practicing our faith so it didn’t seem to matter much what we believed at the time.  We had to both laugh one day, when my mom gave my husband a book about how to live with a Catholic.  Funny thing, I was born and raised Catholic and didn’t even know how to live with myself, yet alone anyone else put up with me.  Neither of us had any knowledge regarding the other’s religious views, but just like everything else, I was ready to defend the only truth I knew. 

Mathew 13:11
“The knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of heaven has been given to you, but not to them. Whoever has will be given more, and he will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him. This is why I speak to them in parables:            

My husband was a great debater and if he wasn’t already aware, he probably should have majored in philosophy or law.  For him, 1+2 always equaled 3.  For me, I factored in “what if” scenarios in which sometimes 1+2 would equal 4 or maybe even 5.  I was a fence sitter with a degree in psychology and he was more of an absolute fundamentalist.  As the saying goes, “If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, it must be a duck.”  As our discussions surrounding the bible and our faith began to grow, he challenged my mind with scripture demonstrating the incongruence’s of the foundation behind the Catholic faith versus that of the born-again Christian believer.  For some unknown reason, I rarely challenged him in this area.   The things he was teaching me challenged my mind, but made sense.  It was as if I was hearing the truth for the very first time and an understanding of religion was finally making sense.  As I sought understanding, God began to reveal answers to my questions regarding these disparities.  In Mathew the disciples asked Jesus why he spoke in parables.  Jesus responded, “The knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of heaven has been given to you, but not to them.  Whoever has will be given more, and he will have abundance.  Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him.  This is why I speak to them in parables...” 

Simply put, the more I began to spend time in God’s word and prayer, the more the Holy Spirit revealed to me the answers I was seeking.  For those who say they don’t read the bible because they do not understand, understanding comes as a relationship with Jesus is welcomed, embraced and developed.  Scholars do not become experts in their field by doing nothing.  Nor should we expect to read God’s word and have complete understanding, without exercising some form of commitment and discipline to learning.  God is the author of infinite wisdom and knowledge and he is happy to share it with those who seek and ask.  Numerous Proverbs speak directly to the topic of wisdom.  It is certainly not a concept to be considered lightly.  In fact, there are over 300 references to wisdom in the bible.  With this being said, we should take heed to study them closely and incorporate these teachings into our everyday decision making.           

Wisdom is Supreme

Proverbs 4:5 Get wisdom, get understanding; do not forget my words or swerve from them.
Proverbs 8:32-33 Blessed are those who keep my ways.  Listen to my instruction and be wise; do not ignore it.

Society tends to place a very heavy emphasis on important titles and professional degrees.  For some reason, we are prone to believe any information reported by the so called experts without looking into the facts for ourselves.  God placed an insatiable desire in my heart to study his word.  Some days, I could hardly put down the bible.  I was amazed at the knowledge and information I gained as a lay person.  God never intended his word to only be understood by seminary experts. 

1 John 2:27 As for you, the anointing you received from him remains in you, and you do not need anyone to teach you.  But as his anointing teaches you about all things and as that anointing is real, not counterfeit-just as I have taught you, remain in him.

1 Corinthians 2:12  “We have not received the spirit of the world but the spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us.”

Once again, as my commitment to the Lord grew in strength, so did Satan’s attacks and lies.  He was becoming desperate to use any means possible to destroy my marriage.  The Holy Spirit had to help me understand the areas in my marriage that were under attack so that I could fight against them.  Awareness is the first key to understanding how to tackle life’s problems.  God has shown me 10 reasons why women attempt to control the hierarchy of the family dynamic and it is important for me to share these.  Some women may not have thought about these reasons, thus their behavior continues to sabotage God’s blessings for their families.

1.)  Lack of Trust in God:  Do we really believe God has the power to redeem our relationships, heal them and make them better?  I would not be writing this book if I didn’t have first-hand knowledge and experience to testify to such a truth.  

2.) Lack of Faith:  Do we really trust that God is working through our husbands regarding the best interests of our families?  If your husband has accepted Jesus as his personal Savior, then you can trust and believe that God is walking out his plan for your husband’s life.  It is up to you to not interfere with this plan, but to provide edification and encouragement.  We must allow our husbands to make mistakes and be patient for God to help our men work through them.  We should not attempt to influence our husband’s thinking or provide direction contrary to God’s word.  The more we interfere with this process, the more we draw our husband’s attention away from communing with the Holy Spirit.  In other words, stop being background noise.

If your husband is not saved, then be sure you are.  Ask the Lord to come into your life to direct your path and never cease praying for your husband’s salvation.  Specifically ask the Lord to place in your husband’s life, those individuals that will speak the hope and promise of Jesus Christ.  Believe and trust in the Lord that if you ask this of him, that he will keep his promise.  Read the scripture below and keep this as the focus of your walk with the Lord.  God’s promises are not only found in the book of Mathew, but consider the other scriptures listed that demonstrate how serious God was about keeping his word to those who seek Him.

Mathew 6:33 “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.”

Mathew 7:7-8; Mathew 21:22; Mark 11:24; Luke 11:9; John 14:13; John 15:7; John 15:16; John 16:23; Psalm 34:4; Psalm 37:4; Jeremiah 29:13; Proverbs 10:3; 1 John 3:22; 1 John 5:14; and Romans 8:28.

3.)  Lack of Patience:  I think I have given much attention to this topic already.  Clearly we have become a people that want things to happen in our time frame, which is usually immediately.  However, when God takes his time with us, He is able to reveal more of himself in order to teach us those life lessons he needs us to learn in order to edify others.  All my life I have been in a hurry to enjoy the gratification of completing one life stage to get to another:  Graduation, college, marriage, career, first child, etc…  I was always in such a hurry to grow up that I never fully enjoyed the season I was in because I was already looking forward to the next one.  In fact, I never took time to “smell the roses,” because usually I was experiencing too much stress worrying about the future.  These are the same feelings we project onto our husbands when we are not patient for God to work.  We are hurrying our men through life, placing undue stress and burdens on their minds and bodies.  This stress is a great distraction, causing separation between them and God.  Not only does it cause separation, but it also leads to frustration and division within the home.  We must allow our husbands the satisfaction and enjoyment of serving God in the best way they know how.  God will work out the details and will transform their character to best serve His needs.  Ladies, we have got to learn to be quiet for the sake of our husbands and for the sake of serving our God.

4.)  Belief we know better than God:  Too many times women take on the role of spiritual leader believing they know better (based on reading the word) how best to direct the relationship between their husbands and God.  It is not a wife’s job to point out scripture with the mindset of correcting her husband’s behavior.  God knows the best way to accomplish his work in his people and we need to leave it at that.  Besides, imagine if your husband was always referring to scripture to “fix” your behavior?  Often times this leads to a spirit of condemnation, rather than conviction, thus thwarting the process.  God does not want his followers to live under a spirit of condemnation.  Satan’s attacks rely solely on this strategy to throw us off track from doing God’s work and excelling in the spiritual gifts that draw us closer to God. 

Romans 8:1 Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.

5.)  Our Perception of God determines how we respond to God:  Imagine if you were never taught the loving side of God, but only the punishing side of God?  Isn’t it possible that your mindset could easily become ensnared in the thought of being unworthy of a good healthy marital relationship?  What if your whole life you felt you were exempt from God’s blessings because you never believed he forgave you for your sins?  Once we come to know and accept Christ in our life and repent of our sins, God tells us in

Psalm 103:8-13 The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love.  He will not always accuse, nor will he harbor his anger forever; he does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities.  For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.  As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him.

Isn’t this enough to believe that God not only loves us and forgives us, but he remembers our sins no more.  Shouldn’t we trust God’s word and rely on Him to mold our perceptions so that we can best pay honor to him for keeping his promises even though we are often times unworthy?

6.)  Lack of being in God’s word:  It is amazing to me how many people profess to be practicing Christians and yet have no idea what God’s word says.  Simply hearing the word preached on Sunday does not give credit to the full potential of God’s word to be used in our lives.  A Christian walk is an everyday experience, encounter and communication with our Lord.  It is not a once a week event that we squeeze between Sunday football and grocery shopping.  God’s word is our victory over life’s challenges.  We cannot claim this victory if we are not willing to do the work to carry the ball to the end zone.  Remember what I just said in step 2 about seeking the kingdom first?  God is not looking for our leftover time.  He is looking for our first fruits to be offered up to him daily.  There is a reason why the first commandment is to love God with your whole heart, soul and mind.  I believe God knew this would be the first commandment his people would forsake.  We have walked in the ways of the world way too long, because of our faltering love for our Father.  We have chosen the things of the world that promise immediate gratification rather than relying on God’s word to build endurance and perseverance to finish the race.  Not only are we to finish the race, but we are to finish boldly displaying integrity and character pleasing to God.  There is a reason why people often encourage one another with the saying “All good things come to those who wait.”  As this applies to Christians, we are to be excited with the anticipation of our salvation being sealed in a Heavenly paradise, not in the promise of wealth and riches here on earth.  Because the promise of heaven seems so distant and fairytale like, we instead rely on those things we believe will make our life happier and easier while here on earth.  Most cannot even wrap their minds around the concept of heaven and everything beautiful and wonderful that God has in store for us.      

We must be in God’s word to truly understand the promises of the full blessings He has in store for us.  Some of his greatest gifts are to be relished here on earth, while others are reserved for us in our Heavenly paradise.  Those that can be experienced today, occur when our chains to sin are broken through the acceptance and cleansing of the blood of Jesus Christ. 

John 8:36 So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. 

I truly believe it is impossible to live with the fruits of the Spirit without being in God’s word to reveal them.

7.)  The influence of secular opinion:  As you journey through life, ask yourself who or what are the outside influences you allow to shape your views and opinions about God?  Do you surround yourself with God fearing, God knowing family and friends or do you spend the majority of your time with nonbelievers?  Who we spend our time with and what information we allow into our minds from other people, books, news and television greatly influences our walk with God.  I don’t know how many times Christians have poured out their problems to secular friends and then relied on ungodly, non-biblical solutions to their problems. Women and men have a tendency to immediately be convinced by others that adultery must be at the root of their marital problems.  The even bigger lie is when Christians tell people their spouse has cheated on them to escape accountability for dealing with their own faults within the relationship.  Once again, it becomes easier to blame the other party for a sin they know is grounds for divorce according to the bible, as opposed to recognizing their own sin, facing it, repenting of it and dealing with it. 

This topic gets even uglier when Pastors pacify their members on the issues of divorce and adultery.  This often occurs when they are looking for a way to avoid a spirit of hostility toward one of their members as a result of speaking truth into their life.  Rather than save the marriage, the Pastor condones a quick and easy fix to the one suffering most from the marital discord.  If you think for one second that God does not know the hidden secret you have created in order to end your marriage, you are greatly fooling yourself, but not God. 

We as Christians have dismissed the idea that God can redeem and make better any situation.  The problem is we refuse to do the hard work involved in order to reap the blessing.  Instead of digging in deeper, asking God to remove our selfish desires, we look for the quickest way to remove the obstacle that is causing us the greatest amount of pain. 

A discussion about the hurt projected onto children should probably be discussed here.  I truly believe as parents we owe it to our children to put aside our selfish desires to protect their greater good.  Remember much of what leads to divorce is a power struggle between husband and wife.  One of the parents has got to step out in maturity and sacrifice their own well-being on behalf of their children.  Jesus demonstrated this perfectly by submitting to the will of his Father, for the greater good of God’s children to enjoy a life free from sin.  A sacrifice had to be made and Jesus was willing to accept the call.  This is what parents must keep in mind when considering reconciliation versus divorce.  If you submit in obedience to your Father, obey His word and walk in faith believing he will restore your marriage, you will indeed see this come to pass and your children will flourish because of your efforts.  Never give up because God did not, and will not give up on you.  It is often us who give up on God. 

8.)  Lack of discernment regarding the lies of the enemy versus God’s promises:  The point of this statement falls directly in sync with item number 6 of not being in the word of God.  It is very difficult for Christians to recognize and understand the difference between good and evil if we are not careful to incorporate the teachings of scripture into our everyday lives.  The world has become so loud and overbearing in its message that we are actually muting the word of God and replacing it with worldly values.  Near the end of the bible in the books of 1st, 2nd and 3rd John, Jude and Revelation there exists a continuous, clear and consistent message building in strength to warn the reader of the Antichrist.  Not only are we warned, but we are told how to tell the difference between children of God and children lost to Satan.  Furthermore, we are told to not love the world or anything in the world.  John describes how to tell the difference between good and evil by testing the spirits and identifying false prophets.  Jude further picks up this theme by warning believers of the godless men who have “slipped” in among them.  Chapter 1 verse 4 states, “They are godless men, who change the grace of our God into a license for immorality and deny Jesus Christ our only Sovereign and Lord.” 

We should be more discerning regarding the urgency of this final message in the bible.  In order to live through the final days, we must be able to tell the difference between the power of Satan and the power of our Savior.  Satan’s power keeps us divided, confused and perplexed about the righteous pathway we should follow.  Jesus sets a straight and narrow path resulting in peace, joy and freedom.  We cannot wage war against the enemy within our families if we are completely unaware of what these attacks look like.  The enemy is very sly at confusing us, getting us to believe that things will never get any better; that the life we are living is the best we will see; and that living our way is better than living God’s way.  We are further led into a delusional state believing our sinful ways, void of repentance, will still get us a free pass into heaven because of God’s unconditional love.  This is a bold face lie straight from the mouth of Satan. 

One should not be deceived thinking Satan does not exist in the here and now.  The mindset of our culture clearly demonstrates his powerful agenda being manifested through non-believers and false prophets.  The enemy’s primary goal is to fool you into living a life without the conviction of God in your heart.  Some believe Satan will only be released prior to the time of Jesus coming.  However, we know from the very first book of Genesis that Satan is alive and well and has been since the beginning of time.  Remember how slyly he disguised himself as a serpent in the garden.  He has continued his works to the present day, attempting to destroy God’s people.

If we miss this critical message, we run the risk of unknowingly pledging our allegiance to the wrong “Prince.”  I say unknowingly because many people blindly follow teachers without reading the word themselves.  It should be by the power of the Holy Spirit, convicting us to change sinful behavior into righteous behavior in which we will clearly learn to understand and live by God’s word.  The marriage covenant we share should be sealed with the promise to hold dear God’s teachings in our hearts.  We should always be searching to serve the needs of our spouse over ourselves, just as Christ put the needs of salvation for his church over himself. 

9.)  The idea that women no longer need men

Today’s culture reflects a clear and disturbing trend within the family structure.  What is portrayed on television is far too often glorified and established as a new acceptable norm.  The prevalence of the woman as head of the household over the man is depicted quite generously throughout the media.  In fact it is extremely common for men to be ridiculed, made fun of, criticized and called names such as stupid, idiot and moron, just to drive the point home that women not only run the home, but rule it.

Women have tolerated and even emboldened this media message because this is exactly what is going on in their own homes.  Not only has there been a strong movement to ridicule men and make them look foolish, but women have come to clearly support the idea that men are no longer needed since acquiring their new state of independence. 

God created man and woman as equal, but each holding a different position within his order.  If man and woman were deemed as unequal, we would not have been given the scripture that husband and wife would become one flesh (Gen 2:24).  If you are from the same flesh, you are from the same origin.  I have brothers and sisters, but that does not mean that my parents place greater or lesser value on any one of their children.  We all came from the same mother and father, but they simply recognize us as having different talents and abilities.  Because I am the youngest, I hold a different position in the family, but this does not make me any less valued in the eyes of my parents.

Because women have taken a defensive position in fighting against the idea of suppression, they have not only reversed the structure of the family hierarchy, but have found many ways to accomplish their goals without even considering life with a husband.  Women can now even have children through the process of sperm donation, rather than raise a child with a man’s love and influence.  Satan has once again found success in capitalizing on the brokenness women feel from past relationships.  He has clouded their thoughts with ungodly ideas keeping them from experiencing, not only healing, but wholeness.  God meant for men and women to be partnered together for a life experience that would hold many trials and blessings.  The beauty of God’s heart was that he knew the characteristics of man and the characteristics of woman would intertwine for the ultimate love experience.

10.)  Woman’s attempt to remove masculine characteristics from child rearing:  The final, but certainly not the least important reason, as to why women strive to gain headship in the home is the belief that men are too hard on raising their children.  American culture has made a 180 degree shift in child rearing practices.  Women believe their methods of raising children are more nurturing, thus leading to healthier children and more stable adults.  In essence, we are supporting the feminization of a whole generation of boys who will truly not know how to be men.  The danger of this is mind boggling.

Women have always held near and dear to their hearts, the fairytale of being rescued by the big strong prince.  This fantasy changes when we make poor decisions regarding our sexuality at too young an age.  Often times, premarital sexual interactions leave deep wounds and scars, forever blotting out the dream of spending the rest of our lives with a knight in shining armor.  Instead, we spend much of our time voicing our hurts, pushing men away and protecting ourselves from any form of future pain.  For many women, the decision to be sexually active is taken from them in the form of abuse, incest and molest.  I recognize the victimization that occurs, but the solution is still the same.  Jesus is ready and waiting to walk these women through a process of healing, but they must accept Him and his plans to accomplish this goal. 

Typically women grow up with a great brick wall blocking real intimacy and love.  I can attest to this through my own personal testimony.  The power and control I sought to protect myself from harm manifested itself in a complete lack of compassion, empathy and sympathy toward my husband.  I constantly felt on guard feeling like I had to defend myself from his attempts at intimacy.

Because of this dynamic, I not only felt the importance of protecting by myself, but I attempted to stop all father-son interaction that I deemed too rough or assertive for our son to handle.   I wanted to protect my son from discipline or any kind of harsh correction whether he needed it or not.  One way or the other, I was going to be certain that if I could not protect my heart from further harm, I would certainly give my best effort to protect my son from it.  I did not have any qualms about correcting my husband and never considered this as sinful behavior.  I thought I was doing my job as a mother, but clearly neglected my role as a wife.

The funny thing is, most of this played out in my own mind.  My husband’s intentions were never to harm our son at all.  In fact, our son has never been spanked or corrected in a physical manner except for one time by me.  My own experiences brought a heightened sense of emotion regarding verbal correction, not physical correction.  I believed I had to protect my son from any speech I deemed unhealthy which could potentially lead to low self-esteem.  My husband has an incredible love for his son, but he only knew to parent in the ways in which he had been parented.  Neither of us ever considered modeling our parenting style after biblical principles.  Today God has revealed these things to us and we constantly strive to be in our Father’s will so that our son will carry on healthy parenting practices, thus breaking the cycle.

Boys need correction and male guidance.  Earlier in this book I spoke of scripture in the book of Hebrews in which we are told God disciplines those whom he loves.  Discipline is not a bad concept, but we as parents have a responsibility to choose the best style that most closely honors God and matches each child’s individual characteristics.  Molding our boys toward only those personality traits most identified as female, will greatly confuse and hinder their role as spiritual head of their households later on.  Boys need to learn the strength and masculinity of protection and how to apply it biblically to their wife and children.  Not only does their physical prowess need to be encouraged, but their minds and emotions as well.  God has given men a completely different mindset regarding problem solving and their approach to such.  Women do a great disservice when they try to get men to sway their thinking constantly toward the feminine perspective.

Please remember, as you seek God’s guidance in your parenting practices, to incorporate what you learn.  Fight against and rebuke a hardening of your heart and strive to be obedient to God’s will. 

1 Corinthians 3:2-4

I gave you milk, not solid food, for you were not ready for it.  Indeed, you are still not ready.  You are still worldly.  For since there is jealousy and quarreling among you, are you not worldly?  Are you not acting like mere men?

1 Thessalonians 4:8

Therefore, he who rejects this instruction does not reject man but God, who gives you his Holy Spirit.

I hope you will find these 10 points useful in evaluating your role within your family dynamic.  On-going self examination is a necessary and critical part of a Christian’s walk with God.  We are not to remain as infants needing milk as Paul boldly states in 1 Corinthians 3:2.  Instead, we must persevere to a maturity in Christ, in which we can partake of solid food.

"Every Day is a Good Day When You Live it God's Way!"


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

How to Fix Your Man

The blame I heaped on my husband was a result of not having dealt with my own brokenness from poor decision-making as a young adult.  Deep seated shame and guilt were at the core of my heart, but I didn’t even realize it.  All of my inadequacies, failures and heart-ache from broken and unhealthy relationships were projected onto my husband in order to deflect from my responsibility of having to face and deal with them directly.  It was so much easier to blame him and his behavior for my unhappiness, than to have to deal with the accountability of my own present and past sins.

Part of drawing closer in your relationship with your spouse begins by drawing closer in your relationship with Jesus.  A first step in examining the problems in your relationship is being honest with yourself.  I didn’t like my husband’s behavior toward me much of the time, but I had a way of pushing him into a corner until the ugliness of his character was provoked.  We used to have this argument about whether someone could make you behave or react the way you do.  He would always say, “I wouldn’t act this way, if you didn’t make me feel this way.”  I would argue, “I can’t make you do or feel anything.  You should have control over your own emotions, behavior and words.”  See, we were very good at pushing each other’s “hot buttons,” then we would blame the other person for our response or reaction to them.

James 1:19-20
Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God.

Proverbs 15:18
A hot-tempered man stirs up dissension, but a patient man calms a quarrel.

Oh, how I wish these scriptures had been written on my heart during the earlier years of our marriage.  It seemed neither of us practiced much self-control.  The hurt within each one of us ran so deep that our initial response to one another was always defensive.  Much of our time was spent trying to rationalize our behavior with excuses for why the other should conform to our ways and standards.  Remember in the Garden of Eden when Adam and Eve ate from the tree of knowledge and suddenly their eyes were opened to their nakedness.  Immediately they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.  Later we would learn the symbolism of the fig tree being the equivalent to Jesus and his work on the cross to cover our sins.  Even from the beginning, God had a plan for redemption for his people.  Isn’t the covering with the fig leaves the same idea we have when we attempt to use rationalizations and excuses to try and “cover” our sinful behavior?  So much of our daily energy was exerted trying to deal with hurt feelings that we were hardly able to be efficient or productive in running our household.  I once heard the saying, “If you have to rationalize or explain your behavior, then it must be wrong.”  This has stuck with me ever since.  When I find myself making excuses or blaming others for my situation, my mind returns to this quote and I re-evaluate my behavior.

The title of this chapter is “How to Fix Your Man.”  If you haven’t already guessed, fixing your man begins with fixing yourself first.  It is only when you address your brokenness and lay it at the foot of the cross that Jesus can begin to work.  In a state of humbleness and submission, the Holy Spirit can now begin to show us the ugliness of our sin nature.  No longer is the focus of our hurt and anger found in the imperfections of our spouse, but in our own realization of our own imperfection.  When we are able to come down off our pedestal, the sins of our mate are no longer ours to fix.  We can pass this burden onto our Savior and begin to experience a new sense of freedom and peace.  We are no longer accountable or responsible for our spouse’s behavior.  God has opened our eyes to our own wrongdoing and we are to begin to address our own issues.  A new trust in the Lord is brought to life to help us handle those life situations that are out of our control.  Remember earlier when I spoke of how ugly it can be when we attempt to change another person’s behavior?  The force, lying and manipulation involved in our attempts often lead relationships to divorce, rather than the desired result of change.  When we instead leave these situations up to God, he is able to bring about change through quiet submission and humility.  The circumstances turn out far greater than we could have ever hoped for had we done it in our own way.

When we remain faithful in our job as Christians, we delve into God’s word daily and allow the scriptures to cleanse us.  A longing to be in God’s will takes us down a path striving for righteousness so that when we stand before the throne of our Savior we anxiously anticipate the words, “Well done, my good and faithful servant.”  Throughout biblical history, God remained faithful to his followers.  He healed the sick, restored the depraved, brought home the lost, rekindled relationships and honored prayer with a revival in the hearts of his people for obedience to his laws.  All of these things were done to reward acts of faith from his righteous believers.  Why shouldn’t we believe that he would do the same for us when we live by his ways?  God wants his people to enjoy the fruits of their labor in serving him.  We must trust and believe that he is not only capable of restoring our relationships, but desires to do so, that we may experience the full realm of his glory. 

The two components that slow us down from believing God’s willingness to act on our behalf is our own lack of patience in waiting on the Lord to accomplish the task that requires the change; and our belief that we are unworthy of such an act of restoration to occur within our marriage. 
How many times has frustration developed in your spirit when a brother or sister in Christ reminds you of God working in his time as opposed to yours?  As Christians, this principle falls within the top 10 fundamentals of faith.  We learn through pastoral messages, Sunday school teachings, and home group testimonies that God is not in a hurry.  He has plans to mold you, bend you and stretch you in ways you never imagined, but all of this occurs on his time table.  Understanding God’s will for your life requires a proclamation that you will do things his way and in his time frame.  This is God’s humorous, yet loving way of teaching us patience and through patience we learn trust and through trust our faith is strengthened.  Do you see how all of these wonderful gifts, fruits of the spirit, as mentioned in Galatians 5:22 are meant to be incorporated into our marriages?  God is not the author of confusion and chaos as we see in so many marriages today.  He desires generations of righteous followers to raise up their children in his ways so that families can experience peace and unity.  In Mathew chapter 10 Jesus is preparing to send out his disciples to proclaim the good news of the gospel.  In verse 13 He states, “If the home is deserving, let your peace rest on it; if it is not, let your peace return to you.”  Can we not assume that striving for righteousness within our family structure is worthy of God’s blessing of peace and tranquility?

The key to unlocking God’s power to restore, repair, revitalize, and renovate is through the act of repentance.  In Acts 3:19 we are told, “Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord, and that he may send the Christ, who has been appointed for you-even Jesus.”  Doesn’t the word refreshing give you an abundance of hope that God will not only make things better, but completely give new life as if inhaling a deep breath of a field full of wild flowers?  Can you even imagine the joy in your heart of experiencing a greater more passionate love for your spouse than even the best memory that first existed in your mind?  This is what God does when you honor his blessed covenant of marriage.  He far surpasses any expectation we had for a happy marriage.  He lays a foundation in which the strength of the commitment lies solely on his shoulders as we learn to submit to his teachings. 

Fixing our husbands is first and foremost about fixing ourselves.  Initiating this process begins with honest self-reflection and repentance.  The irony of “Fixing our Husbands” is really that the task doesn’t belong to us at all.

"Every Day is a Good Day When You Live it God's Way!"


Monday, October 1, 2012

Unveiling the Truth Before the November Election

It is easy to turn your back on the truth if you stand to look foolish by being duped.  We are called to a greater purpose by choosing righteously in doing our homework.  It is not enough to simply repeat what you are hearing in the media.  The media has proven themselves to be corruptible, biased and guilty of doctoring stories to sway the public in supporting their candidate.  A more mature person is at least willing to consider both sides and then form some sort of intelligent opinion to make sound decisions in the up and coming election. 

If you enjoy your freedom, at least consider reviewing information about our current president to determine if he is the person of integrity you thought him to be.  Too much pride, too many lies, too many off the cuff comments against America, not to mention his dismal record, speaks for itself:  Greater debt, fewer jobs, more division (not only in America, but around the world), highest numbers of people ever on assistance and entitlement programs and a personal agenda to lead the greatest nation in history to it's demise through redistribution of wealth and socialism.  Look at the record of those countries under socialism or communism.  They experience leadership through tyrannical practices, have little to no freedom, and experience oppression on a continuous basis. 

People flee to America to experience our freedom.  In fact they will do anything to get within our borders, even if it means entering illegally.  Why would we want a political ideology that others are trying to escape from?  Think about it!  Will we really be better off under a future dictatorship?

Please see the website below to further your knowledge about our current president.