Let Me Tell You, Ladies

A man loves to be useful and to feel needed, admired, accepted as he is and appreciated. As his wife, we are his biggest fan and most vocal cheering section.

We encourage our husband, show him appreciation, leave love notes in his briefcase or lunchbox, get excited at his accomplishments and care about his day. We can ask him what he needs, and do all in our power to help.

Our husband is not our mule and a paycheck. His role in life is not to function as our servant. Even if we both work all day, and we share the chores and child care, he should choose the chores he feels comfortable doing.

When our husband has a day off, he needs some of that time for himself. Family time is important, but he needs some of that time to chill, to hang with his buds, to create in his shop, to surf the waves or the internet, or to play his gaming device.

He decompresses his stress this way and can pay more attention to the family during our time together. A date night is also important for us as a couple…a time to play, laugh, make memories, form a closer bond and do something fun.

If we make his favorite meals and have everything he needs for the next day in plain view and ready for him before we go to bed, his love for us will grow; and he will make more of an effort to care for our needs as well.

If he is withdrawn, irritable, angry, or exhibiting any negative emotions, we can give him some space and some time to work out his issues. We can ask if there is anything we can do to help, and then follow through with his requests.

When a disagreement occurs, we brainstorm and pray together rather than just caving in to our partner or fighting to get our own way. Once God shows us a scenario, which we both feel good about, we proceed with unity and joy in our heart.

Prayer:
Father God, Your Word warns us that all of the forces of hell, along with the temptations and disagreements of the world, unite to destroy our marriage. We often join them and make life more difficult for our partner.

Remind us that love never fails; so we can decide together that divorce is never an option, since divorce shreds our family and removes the support that our children need regardless of how old they are. Divorce makes Your Church vulnerable, unstable and defeated.

Revive us, O Lord, so that we can rejoice in You (Psalm 85:6). Satisfy us anew each new morning with your unfailing love, so we can sing for joy and rejoice all the days of our life (Psalm 90:14).

Thought for the Day:
There is nothing, which happens in a marriage that cannot be resolved, if both mates will prefer the other person, exhibit patience during a disagreement, join forces during a trial and spend time enjoying one another’s company.

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Our Strong Tower

As an infant, most of us are properly cared for by our parents; although, more often in these days in which we live, children are no longer cherished and nurtured.

Regardless of our upbringing, however, life rarely pulls its punches. It deals out a lifetime of hard knocks, abuse, neglect and disappointments.

We learn to keep more to our self, in order to give people and circumstances fewer chances to hurt us. We want to stay safe from a world, which often frightens us.

We continue to reach out to other people, and to help them in any way we can; but suspicion taints the way we view people and opportunities, which come our way.

We are programmed to believe that the good times will never last, because they never did in the past. We stop looking forward to things; and we never believe promises, because they rarely if ever happen.

We miss opportunities, which we would enjoy, because we are afraid to trust the leading of God’s Spirit. We stay home rather than to take risks to meet new people and to share God’s love with them.

We learn to build walls to hide behind in an attempt to protect our self. However, these very walls only serve to keep us restrained in the confinement of our own making.

We try to escape these walls through addictions, the wrong friends and mate, busyness, hobbies, projects and over-achieving in areas, which do not really matter.

We imprison our true self behind those walls, which were meant to keep us safe. We can never live a full life as long as we continue to hinder our whole body, soul and spirit from living free in Christ (Galatians 5:1).

Prayer:
Father God, we wall up our heart, because vulnerability makes us susceptible to victimization and neglect. You advise us to guard our heart from sin, but not from other people. You actually expose us to disappointment in this life to show us the magnitude of Your continual love and nurture for us.

Remind us that when we are the weakest and the most vulnerable, then You are the strongest and closest to us in order to fight on our behalf (2 Corinthians 12:9-11; Exodus 14:14; Deuteronomy 3:22).

Therefore, we can entrust our body, soul and spirit to You and Your protection and care (Psalm 55:22; 1 Peter 5:7). We can run into the safety of Your everlasting arms (Isaiah 41:10).

Thought for the Day:
We fear vulnerability; therefore, we hide our true self behind walls of our own making; but God protects us from our enemies and is a strong tower into which we can run and be safe. – Psalm 18:2, 10

Fight, Flight or Faith

To “fight or flight” is the normal human reaction to trauma. We want to defend our self or to run from confrontation on any level. We either use our human ingenuity to escape from trials or else we just sit and complain about them.

James recommends that we find joy in our trials, knowing that they are building up our faith in God’s faithfulness, as well as increasing our endurance to face other trials in the future (James 1:2-4).

James assures us that endurance will help us to walk in complete perfection and to have no lack in any area of our life. We eventually know without a doubt that God will see us through any negative circumstance.

God allows trials to teach us that nothing else matters in our life except Jesus (Colossians 3:3-4). As we endure suffering, we wait on God in every aspect of our life, and He always provides.

Our beliefs about God affect our thoughts, words and deeds. If we believe by faith, we will also think, speak and act in faith (2 Corinthians 5:7). This allows the light of Christ to shine forth from our life.

We do not have to experience trials to trust God or to walk in the faith of God’s Son (Galatians 2:20). God also blesses us in the good times of life; and He loves it when we acknowledge His gifts and give Him thanks.

Prayer:
Father God, teach us to praise You in good times and in bad. Remind us that You are working out Your purpose in our life through every circumstance, which we face; and that You will make sure that everything works out to our advantage (Ephesians 2:10; Romans 8:28). We praise You for who You are, what You do for us and for Your Word, which encourages, guides and gives us a rich life of unending hope.

Thought for the Day:
It is impossible to please God, unless we have faith in His faithfulness.
– Hebrews 11:6

Spiritual Healing – Part 1

Understanding Bitterness and Anger

Once we repent, our sins are always forgiven (1 John 1:9). However, some sins often continue to plague us relentlessly for two reasons. They are caused by a subconscious lie from the pit of hell, and this lie is still affecting us every day of our life. What is the sin, which so easily ensnares you? (Hebrews 12:1) What happened in your past that draws you to that sin over and over again?

For instance, my besetting sin is anger. I use anger to protect myself from abuse and neglect. Why do I do that? I had incidences in my life of both abuse and neglect. My soul – my mind, will and emotions – do not want to experience either of these issues again. Therefore, I use anger to fight against anything that even remotely appears to resemble either exploitation or abandonment.

I fight the circumstance and I clash with the person whom I perceive is abusing or neglecting me. I do not even think about it before I react. I automatically over-react to any behavior that involves me, which even hints at being abusive or negligent. This over-reaction in anger is a sin, because it is telling God that I do not trust Him to care for me. I want to control the situation to keep myself safe.

As humans, when something upsets us, it triggers the wounds from our past. We react from the anguish of our soul and complain bitterly about the current issue, because of these ancient wounds (Job 7:11). This bitterness, rooted in the hurtful experiences of our past, will spring up and cause us all sorts of trouble. It will even spoil our current relationships and hinder our walk with the Lord (Hebrews 12:15).

Prayer:
Father God, bitterness and anger reside in our heart over past wounds. Show us the root of Satan’s lies, which stand against Your truth (James 3:14; http://www.theophostic.com ). We need Your forgiveness for sin, as well as Your healing and cleansing from the root of the sin, which allows that sinful behavior to perpetually manifest in our life. Remind us that when Your Son sets us free, we are free indeed (John 8:36).

Thought for the Day:
God wants to cleanse our soul from bitterness and anger and allow His sweet, living water to flow from our soul instead of putrid, bitter water from the painful experiences in our past. – James 3:11