Watch Your Words

Watch Your Words

A while ago, I wrote a post called Respect My Husband?. (  In this post I wrote about the effect the media is having on marriage relationships as it relates to giving respect to men.

There is a set pattern of behaviour being touted as ‘normal’ for relationships between what the media puts out and what we observe in society around us. However, with the divorce rate in our society now at 50%, I question the wisdom in accepting what the media and society at large are displaying as ‘normal’ behaviour for relationships.

Not only are the words we say to each other within a marriage relationship important, but the words we say to others about our partner and about our marriage relationship are equally important.

Intimate details about a relationship (bedroom details) should stay within the relationship.  It’s just plain and simply not appropriate to talk with other people about how your partner is in bed. In stereo-typical fashion, a lot of times this one is blamed on men as they try to one-up each other whether it’s in a locker room conversation, or an outing with ‘the boys’. However, there are some women who go down this road in conversation as well.

Complaining about your partner’s behaviour or habits to other people is good way to undermine your relationship. Even though this causes damage to relationships, we see it frequently in the media and hear it often in society. Whether it’s a group of women with each complaining about how lousy their partner is or a group of men each complaining about their nagging partners, it’s all one and the same. I have yet to hear of a man or woman saying to their partner, “I am so glad to know you told all of your friends about the things I do that drive you crazy.” and actually mean it. In fact, it is usually devastating and demoralizing to find out your partner has complained about things in your relationship that drive them crazy.

Neither of the above two examples display love or respect for our partners. And neither of the above two examples set the stage for a deeper level of trust and intimacy within a marriage relationship.

The single best thing you can do for your marriage relationship is to pray for your partner every single day. Not a prayer of, ‘God I wish you would change this or that in him/her’, but rather, pray blessing over them, ask for God to help you love them the way He loves them, and ask God to work in your life to make you a better marriage partner. Lastly thank God for the gift of your spouse.

A good marriage takes two committed individuals to make the relationship work. Not only are the words we speak to each other important, but the words we speak about our partners are critical as well.

There is no one single thing that makes a long-lasting marriage successful, however, this is one of the many essential ingredients to building a loving, trusting and intimate marriage relationship.


I hope this blesses someone today.

It’s Been a While….

I can do all things

Hello again! It has been a while since I posted on this blog.  The break was not planned or intentional. It snuck up out of nowhere and happened.


We had gone through a very hectic Christmas and holiday season, I was in the midst of an extremely time-consuming project with work, our family was getting ready to go away on a trip and all of a sudden there were no more posts for the blog.


One missed day turned into two, and then a week, then two, and all of a sudden I realized – Hey! Wait a minute! It’s been a couple of months! What happened?


As I reflected on what has been happening in my life and what has been occupying my time over these past few weeks, I realized I had allowed other areas of my life to crowd out the time I had previously set aside for writing. Instead of protecting my writing time and making it a priority, I had given it away to other things which seemed more important. And then I realized, I had never claimed back the lost time for writing.


It is really not much different than making a commitment to work out regularly, or to read the Bible every day and then after a short time, you’re no longer doing the things you had planned to do.


Excuse me for a moment while I give myself a bit of a lecture. No matter what you commit to doing, if the time to do it is not carefully guarded and protected, the time will be lost and the task will not be completed.


Learning to say, “No”, to the things that try to steal time already allocated to a specific task is part of the process of learning self-discipline and self-control. Self-control is one of the fruits of the Spirit listed in Galations 5:22-23. Personally, I think maybe self-control is listed last because it’s the hardest.


So as I sat reflecting on what had happened to the blog and my writing, the one thing that became clear to me was that I needed to be much more intentional with my time and I need to be saying, “No” to the things that try to sneak into the time I set aside for writing.  The easiest way for me to do this is through prayer asking for help as I attempt to stay the course with writing and then work on being consistent day in and day out.


I don’t think I’m the only one who struggles sometimes with keeping up with my commitments – at least I hope I’m not the only one! If nothing else, I hope today’s post helps someone else pick themselves up and start again on a previous commitment.  Today is a new day and with a new day comes a new opportunity to start again.


So how about you?  Is there anything you have been neglecting in your life that needs your attention and time?  Why not join me and start again today?


Why Prayer is Important to Me



Prayer. The word just sounds religious and for a lot of people it sounds outdated and possibly foreign. Others think prayer is mysterious, maybe magical or even a complete crock.

And then there are those people who feel the way I do about prayer. Through prayer we have an opportunity to communicate and exchange dialogue with God. It is conversational, not scripted. It involves speaking and listening. It’s not mysterious or magical, but it is supernatural. It does not have to be scheduled, it can be spontaneous. Location does not matter, and physical positioning isn’t integral either.

There are likely people who would disagree with me on what I’ve already said here about prayer, however my intention is not to be controversial or to be offensive on this subject.  Rather my intention is to express what prayer is to me personally and why it is important to me.

As I read the Bible and see a verse like 1 Thessalonians 5:17 which says, “pray continually” I have come to the conclusion that I can pray anywhere and anytime. I don’t see prayer as a religious ceremony; I see it as a conversation style that works in my personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

That’s where I’m coming from. I have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ first and foremost. Not a religion. As I view what I have as a personal relationship, I build that relationship through communication.  Similar, in some ways, to a relationship with another person.

I can’t imagine trying to have a relationship with someone who never spoke to me and would only listen to me if I spoke certain specific words in a pre-determined order at a set time and in a specific location. That kind of a relationship wouldn’t work for me.

If I need to talk to someone, I get in front of them, whether it’s in person, on the phone, through a text or an email, whether it’s verbal, written or digital; I’m going to connect with them.

Obviously I am not able to phone, text, or email God to communicate with Him. I literally just talk to God. Sometimes the conversation is lengthy, other times it is short and to the point.  Sometimes I do most of the talking and other times I’m very, very quiet.

Philippians 4:6 is a favourite verse of mine on prayer. It says, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.”

I love that I can take anything and everything to God; that I can pour out my heart with every care and concern to Him. I am so grateful and thankful that He is interested in all the details of my life.

Here’s the answer to the title of this blog post – Why Prayer is Important to Me – because I know He listens and because He answers prayer. For real.

I could write and write and write some more about all of the answered prayers I’ve had in my life. Has every prayer I’ve made been answered the way I wanted?  Absolutely not. But that doesn’t discourage me in the least because God answers prayer. If we persist in our prayers and we pray according to His will and purposes, He will answer. What the answer will look like is up to Him.

My plan is to share my thoughts on different aspects of prayer over the course of this month and hopefully to encourage others to spend time and effort in building a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

I continue to pray that God will be glorified each and every day for as long as He gives me breath through what I feel He leads me to do.

Be blessed.

The Hardest Tasks in the World

Hardest Task


I recently read a quote that really struck a chord with me.

“The three hardest tasks in the world are neither physical feats nor intellectual achievements, but moral acts: to return love for hate, to include the excluded, and to say, ‘I was wrong.’” – Sydney Harris

Loving people can, at times, be a glorious experience especially when those people love you back and appreciate you.  However, loving people can also be brutally difficult especially when the people you love don’t like you or even hate you and don’t want to have anything to do with you.

It’s easy to listen to a song like Casting Crown’s “If We Are the Body” and agree with the lyrics in the bridge, “Jesus paid much too high a price for us to pick and choose who should come and we are the body of Christ” and the chorus, “But if we are the body, Why aren’t His arms reaching? Why aren’t His hands healing? Why aren’t His words teaching? And if we are the body, why aren’t His feet going? Why is His love not showing them there is a way?”, but it is much more difficult to live it out in our lives.

When it’s words in a song, or words in a book or on an electronic screen; intellectually we can agree. But what about when the person you don’t get along with suddenly shows up to participate in the small group or Bible study that you’ve been a part of for a long time? I know someone who had that happen, and they were brave enough to be brutally honest with me about how it made them feel. In short, the feeling was that the small group had been a haven, a place to escape some of life’s difficulties, and now that was gone.

Being the sensitive, caring and understanding person that I am, after listening for a while, I responded with something along the lines of; wouldn’t it just be awful if that person started attending regularly and then got saved, because then you’d have to put up with them for all of eternity in Heaven!

I thought it was fairly funny, but apparently not so much! It did help to put a different perspective on the situation though.

Whether it’s through showing love to someone who doesn’t like us, or going out of our way to include the excluded, or apologizing, here is what we need to remember:  When we were enemies of God, in love and at a great price, He gave up His son in the hope that we would one day return that love to Him.

Just as He did this for me, He did this for every single person. He loves you just as much as He loves me. The value that God puts on each one of us as individuals is tremendous. (Read John 3:16)

Once we understand this and can personalize and internalize it in the very core of our souls, then it requires much less effort to extend love to anyone regardless of how they feel about us in return.

In reading through the gospels and studying Jesus life when He was here on earth, one thing that stands out to me is how He went out of His way to demonstrate love to those who were unloved, and to include those who were excluded.  I am absolutely convinced it is because of His great love for each and every person. If God puts that high a value on every person, who are we to think it would ever be alright to exclude or not act in love towards anyone?

It’s a matter of exchanging our heart for His heart and learning to see people as He sees people.

Growing in maturity as a Christian is a process. As we strive to build our relationships with God, we should be able to identify areas that we have grown in and others should be able to see a difference in us as well.

As we are still near the beginning of 2014, one of my prayers is that I will grow in love and compassion for others, that I would see people the way that God sees them and that when they see me, they would catch a glimpse of Him.

Respect My Husband?

Wives Submit


Last Monday, I wrote about wives submitting to husbands and offered a glimpse of what Biblical marriage looks like.

While the term “submit” or “submission” often elicits a negative response in our society, when it is properly applied in a Biblical marriage, it is a positive.

I watched a couple of interviews late last week of Candace Cameron Bure as she defended her role as a submissive wife in a Biblical marriage relationship.  I love this quote from her, “Meekness, it is not weakness. It is strength under control, it is bridled strength.” – Candace Cameron Bure

While the media in the USA has been quite negative towards Candace’s statements about marriage in her interviews last week, I applaud her for having the courage to stand up and give a beautiful description of what a wife’s submissive role in a Biblical marriage is.

For decades now, North Americans have been fed a steady diet of media that portrays men as weak-minded, incapable leaders; prone to messing up the most basic tasks; most of whom would be completely and utterly lost if it was not for the amazingly strong and capable women in their lives.

Seriously consider how the roles for men and women have been portrayed in these popular television shows:

–          All in the Family

–          The Flintstones

–          The Cosby Show

–          Home Improvement

–          The Simpsons

–          Everybody Loves Raymond

–          The King of Queens

–          According to Jim

I’m sure the list could go on with several more, but for now I will stop here.

I remember back when I was newly married and had an issue with my car. Dan (my husband) was going to get it looked after, but before he could I went and asked my father what he thought the problem was and what I should do about it. I did it without thinking of how it would impact Dan. Dan was doing his very best for me and was in the process of looking after the matter and felt that I totally dismissed what he was trying to do by going to my father for advice and information. He said he felt like I didn’t trust him to look after me and that I didn’t respect him as the leader in our home. While it hadn’t been my intention, when I looked at my actions, I realized that he was right and I was wrong with what I had done.

As women and wives, we have a tremendous responsibility towards our husbands. In scripture women are not told to love their husbands. I think this is because loving them is easy for us. Respecting them, trusting them and submitting to them is what is more difficult.

However, when we display respect towards our husbands; and through both our actions and our words encourage our husbands to be the leaders in our homes, then they have the opportunity to be the men that God created them to be.

I have heard women say things to the effect that they will start respecting their husbands when their husbands start acting in a manner that is worthy of respect.  I wonder how those same women would feel if their husbands said they would love their wives when their wives started acting in a manner that was worthy of love?

It’s awfully hard to love someone who doesn’t respect you, trust you, or value your thoughts and opinions.

As wives, we have to look for ways to affirm our men. We need to build them up and encourage them to be leaders.  When he takes out the garbage without you asking him, thank him and let him know that you notice and appreciate the things he does for his family. Wives should be the biggest fans, the loudest cheerleaders and the best supporters of their husbands.

Instead of focusing on his short-comings, try focusing on his strengths. Instead of waiting for a perfect husband to show your respect to, learn to respect the imperfect person that God has BLESSED you with for his position in your home as the leader and remember that he is not in love with a perfect wife, he is in love with imperfect you!


Book Review – The Circle Maker by Mark Batterson

Circle Maker


I came across The Circle Maker by Mark Batterson when I was doing a search for books on prayer. Am I ever glad I found this book.  Mark has done a great job in this book of finding a good balance between challenging readers and also encouraging readers to pray more often, pray for more than you have before and to build your personal relationship with Christ.

I highlighted and dog-eared a number of passages in this book, but one of my favourites is this one:

“When you live by faith, it often feels like you are risking your reputation. You’re not. You are risking God’s reputation. It’s not your faith that’s on the line. It’s His faithfulness. Why? Because God is the one who made the promise, and He is the only one who can keep it. The battle doesn’t belong to you; it belongs to God. And because the battle doesn’t belong to you, neither does the glory.”

And just because I can’t pick only one favorite out of the book, here is another one of my favorite passages:

“The reason many of us give up too soon is that we feel like we have failed if God doesn’t answer our prayer. That isn’t failure. The only way you can fail is if you stop praying. Prayer is a no-lose proposition.”

Mark’s book, The Circle Maker has definitely challenged and encouraged me with my own prayer life and I have enjoyed his writing style so much in this book, that I’m eager to read another one of his books, All In, very soon.

If you want a book that will stretch your faith and deepen your prayer life, this book is a good one to read!

Escaping Jail

Escaping Jail


Yesterday’s post was about going to jail and so I thought I would write today about escaping jail. That’s me in the picture above, just about to walk out the door of the jail back into freedom!

When we were touring the Kingston Penitentiary, I found the stories of the escapes and the attempted escapes very interesting.

There was no question in my mind about why anyone would want to escape after having seen the inside of the jail. That was a no-brainer. But in looking at the intense security, the cameras that were everywhere, all of the locked heavy doors, all of the razor wire, barb wire, the very high fences that were then surrounded by a fortress type, cement block wall that had armed guards on top in turret style lookouts, one thing was very clear – the place was specifically designed to prevent escape.

jail 2 Jail

And yet, for all of the designing, planning, and security measures that were in place, people still tried to escape and some of them even succeeded in escaping.

My best guess would be that in order to escape from a prison like that, one would have to be fiercely dedicated to planning, strategizing and executing any escape attempt. I would also guess that there would be many prisoners who would look at their surroundings and just resign themselves to the situation they were in.

Why does this matter?

I have become painfully aware that one strategy of the enemy of my soul is to make me feel like I’m in solitary confinement – meaning, that I’m all on my own, no one else has been through what I’m going through, and no one else would ever understand what I’m going through.

It’s a prison that he masterfully designs with each cell unique to the prisoner that he wants to hold captive. He makes it seem that escape is impossible and convinces us that speaking out and asking for help will make us look foolish, and so those who resign themselves to the situation suffer in silence.

Whether it’s something we are ashamed of in our own lives, an illness or disease that we’ve been diagnosed with that’s seemingly rare, or a huge hurt in our lives, your enemy will try to use whatever he can to make you feel isolated and alone.

However, that prison of isolation he’s designed is all a deception; it is just smoke and mirrors.

First of all, there is always someone else who has at least some idea of what you’re going through and can empathize with you.  The challenge is in finding that person and sometimes the situation is sensitive and not one that a person wants to be widely known. Using discretion in who you speak with and trusting that they won’t ‘spill the beans’ on you to other people is very important.

Secondly, sometimes it’s our own pride that keeps the door to our prison of isolation locked up tight. We don’t want anyone to think less of us, or we might be embarrassed if people knew and so we bury our hurt and situations as deep as we can praying that no one ever finds out.

When we’ve made our own prison, it likely wasn’t a prison we were designing at the beginning. This type of prison usually starts as a defensive move, to put up a wall or barricade to protect ourselves from further hurt. However, after a while, it becomes a prison cell and escaping can seem impossible.

The key to freedom from prisons like these is first, wanting to escape and secondly, finding someone to talk to that you can trust.  I’ve been there.  I started by praying for help in choosing the right person and then with much fear and trepidation I was able to unlock the door and walk out of my prison cell, free at last from a prison I never belonged in to begin with.

Interestingly, when we were touring the jail in Kingston we found this written above the door on the inside of one of the cells.

 only you can free yourself

Why am I bothering to write this post?

In the short time that this blog has been online, and I’ve been brave enough to share a few of the things that I’ve gone through or am going through, I have been contacted by enough people who have been reading what I’m writing to realize that there are a lot of people who feel trapped and some people who feel like they are prisoners don’t know that they hold the key to their cells.

Remember this?

only you can free yourself

It’s true in that all you need to do is ask God for help and then be willing to take the steps to get to a place of healing.

In John 10:10 Jesus says, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” And in John 8:36 Jesus says, “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.”

Your freedom has been purchased and your healing has been provided through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Whatever we’re going through, remember, not one of us is alone. In Joshua 1:5b God is speaking and He says, “As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

Jeremiah 29:11 says this: “For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” God has a good plan for your life.  What you may view as a setback may very well be God working a setup for your future.

Don’t give up. Press on and press forward. Freedom is one choice away.

Going to Jail

Kingston Penitentiary


It’s funny sometimes how things in your past can meet up with you in the present and catch you by surprise.

Just before Christmas this past year, we were invited by a friend to join them on a tour of the recently closed down Kingston Penitentiary. We accepted the invite and found ourselves on a ninety minute tour through the jail and the various facilities within the jail.

I had never been in a jail before and really only had Hollywood ideas of what a jail would be like. I was not prepared for the real thing. When we went through on tour, the jail had only been closed for a little over a month.  At that point, things inside the jail were pretty much the way they had been when the jail was open.  It hadn’t been cleaned which made the gross factor very high.

We took several pictures while we were in the jail, but let me tell you, the pictures DO NOT reflect what the jail was actually like. While the cells are TINY, the security was very tight and it made me wonder how anyone could ever escape. The atmosphere inside the jail was oppressive and depressing.

jail cell

I recognize and agree that jail should not be luxurious and that the security needs to be vigilant to keep the residents of the jail behind bars, but I was not prepared for how awful jail actually is.

As we were touring the jail, Dan and I were remembering someone who was a friend of ours who is now serving a life sentence behind bars. We believe he was actually in the Kingston jail up until the time it closed. It was awful to think of knowing someone who is actually serving a life sentence in a place like that jail. To look at the cells, to hear the tour guide describing how the inmates would spend their days, and imagine what it would be like to spend 25 years in a place like that was almost more than I could bear.

We lost two friends almost 23 years ago now. The wife died and her husband was charged and convicted with murder and was sent to jail with a life sentence.  One bad decision made by one individual along with the resulting actions of that decision, irreparably changed the lives of a lot of people.

They were a Christian couple, they regularly attended the same church we attended, attended the same bible study group we were a part of and the husband video-taped our wedding with the help of his wife. Both of their extended families also attended the same church.

When we heard that the wife had been killed, we were shocked. I know bad things can happen to good people, but it’s still shocking when it happens.  To learn a short time later that her husband was being charged with her death, left us beyond words.

Both Dan and I were recalling these memories as we walked through the tour of the Kingston Penitentiary.  It made for a very sombre tour as we considered what that husband’s life has been like over the past number of years.

Neither of us felt at the time this happened so many years ago, or feel now, that the result of those actions shouldn’t mean a jail sentence. It’s just that actually walking through the jail and catching a glimpse of how awful life is in jail was very sobering when realizing that what we were walking through is someone’s reality day in and day out.

After the tour we discussed a case that was in the news recently of a senior lady who had refused to complete her census and was going to court. She was quoted in the news as saying she would serve jail time if that was what the judge decided. I wondered if she had any idea what jail was really like and at the same time I was intrigued by her conviction to stick to her beliefs about not completing the census, no matter what the cost to her personally.

As we were driving home from Kingston, I thought about Christians in other countries who are in jail because of their faith and I wondered if I could be like the lady who refused to complete the census and be willing to go to jail rather than bow to the system and do something or be something I didn’t want.

Thankfully, I live in Canada and I don’t have to make that choice. However as I pondered that question, I came to the conclusion that yes I would be willing to go to jail because of my faith if that was the situation I found myself in as I know who goes before me, who goes with me and who sustains me.

I hope that never happens, as it’s not something I would choose for myself, or anyone that I know or love, especially after having seen the conditions of jail and getting a glimpse into life in jail.  There is nothing on this earth that is more important than my personal relationship with Jesus and the same is true for you.

Enjoy the blessing of your freedom and use it wisely. Time is short and life goes by quickly.

Be blessed.

Wives Submit….?

Wives Submit


I find it very interesting to watch and listen to reactions whenever the topic of Biblical marriage comes up in conversation and the inevitable word ‘submit’ is mentioned.

A lot of women have a very negative reaction to the word submit and our society has certainly shown us what the abuse of submission can do leading us to believe that it is somehow ‘wrong’ for a woman to submit to her husband even though scripture says otherwise.

Personally, I think wives have the easier side of the marriage relationship, but that’s because I didn’t stop reading when I got to Ephesians 5:22, I kept reading through to Ephesians 5:33. Here’s the passage from the NIV Bible:

22 Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. 24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.

25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her 26 to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, 27 and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. 28 In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church— 30 for we are members of his body. 31 “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.” 32 This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. 33 However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.

In a Biblical marriage, the role of the husband is to be the head of the wife. Again, this is something that women tend to view negatively, however,  this passage of scripture clearly shows that husbands are to be the head of the wife AS Christ is the head of the church, and to LOVE their wives AS Christ LOVED the church. The passage goes on to tell husbands to love their wives as their own bodies.

Jesus Christ loved the church SO much that He gave up His life, His desires, and everything He had. That’s quite the example to live up to as a husband.

Even loving someone else as your own body is a tall order. That requires husbands to care for their wives by providing food, shelter, comfort, and everything necessary that the husbands want for themselves.

It is EASY for a wife to submit to a husband when he loves his wife so much that he puts an equal to or higher priority on her needs and wants than on his own. How could it ever be hard to submit to someone who has your best interests in mind, your comfort and security as a top priority, and puts your desires as equal to or above his own?

The challenge in a Biblical marriage is that none of us are perfect. No husband is perfect, and no wife is perfect. So the question that needs to be answered is how does each marriage partner become the best marriage partner they can possibly be?

Start with reading the Bible and praying about what you can specifically do to become a better husband or wife.

One piece of advice that we were given as a young married couple was to try treating each other like we were royalty.  I was to treat my husband as if he was a king, and he was to treat me as if I were a queen. Not just once in a while, or one day a week, but all the time! That can play out differently for different couples but to give you some ideas on what this could look like, here are a few things that we did.


–          Making his coffee in the mornings and taking it to him as opposed to having him come to the kitchen and fixing it himself

–          Consciously thinking about what he would need to make his day easier and then working on making some of those things happen such as making sure his work clothes were clean and ready when he needed them, or making sure the kids weren’t rambunctious and crazy when he wasn’t feeling well

–          Looking after some things around the house myself that he would normally do, but may be too busy to do, unless it’s something that I couldn’t really do and would only make the situation worse by trying!! J

–          Making special meals that I know he enjoys and prefers especially when he’s had a rough day, or to celebrate a really good day

–          Thinking of and preparing special gifts that really demonstrate that you’re paying attention to the things he likes and wants


–          Making sure her car is well maintained and never low on gas so she doesn’t get stranded and doesn’t have to think about vehicle details

–          Taking an active role with child care and raising children especially when she’s had a rough day or is stressed

–          Helping out with stuff around the house from cleaning, to laundry and meal preparations

–          Finding creative ways to tell her or show her that you appreciate her and the work she does

–          Initiating and purposefully doing something together as a couple that he knows she would really like to do and she knows he would really rather not do as a way to show her how important she is to him!

When wives respect their husbands and yes, submit to their leadership in the marriage and husbands love their wives as themselves, the marriage relationship can be one of the best relationships we can hope to have in our lives.

If your marriage relationship isn’t where you would like it to be, as hard and difficult as this may be, one suggestion before trying to ‘fix’ the other person in the relationship is to try and look at yourself objectively and see what you can do to improve the relationship.

As this blog continues on, I will be posting more on marriage relationships and ways to work through the challenges that inevitably come along the way.

I hope this helps someone today.

Be blessed!





Quiet Times

quiet please


I like quiet.  I find I can focus better and can be more productive in a quiet environment than in a noisy setting. As I type this, I have been trying for a good ninety minutes to write today’s post and here we are at sentence number three. It’s been one interruption after another, completely constant with no quiet.


I chose this time to write this post on purpose as I knew it would be difficult for me.


We live in a world that is full of noise and distractions that makes it difficult and sometimes impossible to be able to pause or reflect, contemplate or meditate on the important things in life.


My soul craves quiet. It’s where I find my refuge and where I am able to pray to God and study His word with clarity of thought and an attentive heart.  I often find myself awake at night while my family sleeps, and I read the Bible, or pray, or sometimes write on my tablet.  Other quiet times, include early in the morning before my family wakes up, or sometimes in the evenings I can find some quiet.


I like the story of Elijah hearing God’s voice in 1 Kings 19:11-13. God’s voice wasn’t heard in the wind or the earthquake or the fire. God’s voice was heard as a gentle whisper.  If He whispers, then we need to be quiet to hear Him.  A whisper is easily lost in a lot of noise.


Prayer is as much about listening as it is about speaking. Actually, I’m going to retract that and instead say this – Prayer is more about listening than it is about speaking. I’m going to be focusing this month on writing about prayer and I thought I would start with quiet times because if prayer includes listening, and God’s voice can be heard as a whisper, then we need to listen carefully and we need to be still and quiet to hear Him.


Psalm 46:10, “He says, ‘Be still, and know that I am God;’”. Sometimes it’s difficult to be still. I’ve struggled through prayer times where I have thoughts constantly running through my head about things I need to get done, or challenges I’m trying to figure out.  Times of prayer where I think I’ve spent more time apologizing to God for getting distracted again, than I have in praying the way I intended to.


I don’t think God minds me getting distracted during prayer nearly as much as He would mind it if I chose not to pray because it’s just too difficult to be still and quiet.  I think God wants us to try, even when it’s hard for us. I think He wants us to work and put effort into building our relationships with Him. It’s through expending effort that we learn and get better at things.


Think about a young child learning to walk. They fall – a lot! The only way a child learns to walk is by trying again, and then again, and then one more time.  Slowly, with many attempts and much effort, each of us learns to walk.  Because of this, I am convinced that the way to a better prayer life and a deeper relationship with God is through persistent and consistent effort on our parts.  God has already done His part to build relationship with us by providing the sacrifice of His one and only Son and He’s waiting for us to accept Him, to reach out to Him, and to build our relationship with Him.


As I’ve read through the gospels and about Jesus life while He was here on Earth, I’ve noticed that Jesus frequently withdrew to quiet places to pray.  If Jesus needed quiet, how much more do I need the quiet to hear from God and to pray to God.


One of my goals for 2014 includes a more consistent quiet time with God. It’s so easy to get distracted, or to run out of time, or to forget, or, or, or…. Time is short and life is flying by. It’s time for me to be focused on the things that are truly important in this life and one of the things my great-grandmother told me was that there is NOTHING on this earth that is more important than my personal relationship with Jesus. I believe she is absolutely correct!


If you’ll excuse me now, I think I’m going to pack up and leave this noisy place and find somewhere nice and quiet! Here I come Lord!


Be blessed!