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Stamp of Approval


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We all want a “stamp of approval” on our lives. I mean nobody likes to be told that how they behave, how they parent, how they treat others, how they live their lives, and anything else that involves their decisions is well, let’s just say not up to par. I will admit that I don’t like being told that some of my decisions and choices aren’t always the best, and sometimes I have issues with authority (oops, how did that skeleton get out the closet). But lately, I have felt God making me more aware of that fact that not everything people do in their lives has His official stamp of approval. Oh, we like to put it there though don’t we?

How many times have we done something, said something, or behaved a certain way and thrown God’s stamp of approval on it knowing good and well He was probably shaking His head at us the entire time. I mean, come on. 

I have noticed a lot of “stamps of approval” lately that have been placed by human hands, not God’s. It upsets me, and it breaks my heart. Since when did we become so blind to the fact that if it isn’t in line with God’s Word then it does NOT get His stamp of approval? 

You can’t live with your significant other and have sex outside of marriage, and turn around and proclaim that God is in control of your life. No. God’s Word is very specific when talking about sex outside of marriage. Scripture tells to even flee from the very hint of sexual immorality. Shacking up with your significant other before marriage falls into this category. So, I am sorry, but God’s stamp of approval does not get placed on this. 

You can’t cuss and drink like a sailor, and then turn around and sing God’s praises. “From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this ought not to be so.” (James 3:10) “Do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery;” (Ephesians 5:18) God’s stamp of approval doesn’t get on this either. 

Divorcing your spouse because you “fell out of love,” or for any other reason other than abuse, adultery, or abandonment, and then saying that God is opening up a new door for you. No, God’s stamp of approval doesn’t get on this either. “Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.” (Mark 10:9)
I realize none of this is like swallowing sugar….more like salt. It’s not easy for me to type this. I am more of a warm and fuzzy kind of gal, with a side (ok, maybe an extra side) of sassiness. But it really breaks my heart that God’s name seems to be placed just about everywhere now. We like to think that if we include His name then everything will be ok. 

Look, I am a divorcee. I went through a divorce, and I know the pain that it brings. It’s not easy. I wouldn’t wish it on anyone. I won’t go into details of that chapter of my life (that’s another post), but I will share that it was a hard struggle for me. And I also know that divorce was never in God’s plan. Ever. God is not an advocate of divorce. Just like he’s not an advocate for shacking up, cursing, drunkenness, wrong behavior, nasty attitudes, lying, cheating, stealing, and the likes. 

Oh there is grace. His sweet wonderful grace. And we can have it at no cost to us, well let me take that back. His grace is freely given to us, but we do have to lay down our pride, self-centeredness, and our ego. We can make poor life choices and be forgiven. God doesn’t turn His back on us when we make decisions that don’t line up with His Word, but that doesn’t mean He approves of them either. So, maybe instead of putting His stamp of approval on it, we should strive to make better choices and seek His way. Maybe instead of looking at our poor choices and thinking to ourselves that God orchestrated the chain of events (you know, so we can feel better about ourselves), we should ask Him to show us His way apart from those poor choices. 

I am by no means perfect, and I don’t have everything figured out. God knows that, and I would never claim to be the girl who has it all together. Really, I am a broken soul in desperate need of my Savior everyday at every moment. I fail Him daily. I make poor choices. I hurt people. I don’t always have the best attitude. I can be snotty and plain out rude. I don’t always love my spouse like I should. I don’t always give my kids my best. And there are times when I try to put God’s stamp of approval on things I have done so that I can feel better. I confess. But that doesn’t mean it’s right. It doesn’t mean it’s ok. I cling to Jesus everyday because I know if I don’t, I will slip right back into the pit He rescued me from. And it’s a dark pit that I don’t ever want to return to. 

Friends, this post isn’t meant to be judgmental or cause you to have a pound of guilt strapped around your neck. And isn’t meant to make you feel bad about yourself. This post is as much for me as well. My prayer is that this post will cause all of us to take a good hard look at our life choices before we try to put God’s stamp of approval on them. And if they don’t line up with His Word, I pray that we wouldn’t try to force His stamp of approval on them. I pray that we would seek His way above our own way, even if it isn’t the easiest or most comfortable. I pray that we would rest in His grace, love, and mercy, and trust Him to always lead us in the right way. 

“But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.” (Matthew 7:14)

Grace & Peace, Jac

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Weaknesses Are the Key


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As I was doing my morning study of Gideon today it was hard for me to hang on to layers that God was peeling away from me. This study has been causing me to come face-to-face with things about myself that either I have tried desperately not to see, or I have just been so out of touch with my Christian walk lately that I couldn’t see them. Either way, God is doing a work on me as I mentioned in my previous post. It’s a hard work to go through, but at the same time it is a sweet season.

Isn’t that how God is though? He loves us enough to take us as we are, but He will never leave us as we were first were. This is true for every season of our life that we find ourself in as well. Who you were when Christ first drew you to Himself is not who you were a year after that, or even 3 months from that. Who you are today is not the same person you were yesterday or last year. God is continually doing a good work within us. We just fail to recognize that at times. And this is the truth that God brought to my attention today.

You see, I have been so focused on my weaknesses in my life that I forgot all about God’s goodness. Oh sure, I had the head knowledge of His goodness, but lately my heart has had trouble acknowledging His goodness. So this morning as I was faced with the statement from Priscilla Shirer, “Our weakness is the key to unlocking the favor of God in our lives,” and then left to ponder the question, “What is your 300” (reference the number of men Gideon had in his army to face the Midianites), I was broken to the core. God got through to me, and I couldn’t hold onto the layers He was desperately wanting to peel away from me. I had to acknowledge that it is through my weaknesses that HE is made strong. His grace IS sufficient for me. My weaknesses are not necessarily a bad thing, as I have been viewing them. They are the very thing that drives me to HIM. Without weaknesses, how could God’s power be revealed through us?

I thought I would share some of my “300” with you. Not as a way to boast or as a way to get you to feel sorry for me, but as a way to be transparent with you and show you that I struggle too. Also, by sharing my “300” I hope it encourages you to be honest with yourself and face your own “300,” but not in a negative way. Face them with the thought that these things are what is going to bring about God’s favor in your life.

My “300”:
1. Secondary Infertility
2. Insecurity
3. My Past
4. Finances
5. Being a good Wife
6. Being a good Mother
7. Being successful in my business

These are all areas that I struggle with. Not necessarily in the fact that I think I am awful in some of the areas, but I do have my doubts that creep in from time to time. There are times in these areas where I go into panic mode and lose sight of God’s goodness, and I try to take full control. BUT GOD. Today He has reminded me that as long as I try to control everything, His power cannot be revealed.

Friends, God will take the “300” in your life, in my life, and use it to bring about some of the greatest blessings. We cannot even begin to truly comprehend His complete goodness, but we can start to acknowledge it. We can let go of our weaknesses and stop trying to do everything ourselves, and just give it over to Him. I am convinced that if we want to see true victory in our lives, if we want to see God’s power displayed in our lives, then our weaknesses are the key to do that.

Grace & Peace, Jaclyn

3 Phrases Your Spouse Needs to Hear From You


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We all know the importance of communication in marriages. We know that without communication any relationship can go sour. But I think sometimes we overlook what we should say. No, there is no rule book for what has to be said or what shouldn’t be said. We do have to think for ourselves and be in tune with our spouse. But I do think there 3 important phrases that our spouses NEED to hear from us. I wanted to share those phrases with you, as I believe if we actually said these 3 phrases more often we would see our marriages improve and grow.

1. “I love you.” I know you are probably thinking, “duh, I knew that already.” But stop and think about how often you say it. Does your spouse hear those words from you daily? Weekly? Monthly? Yearly? Once in a blue moon? You may think that it isn’t necessary to actually speak these words because you think that your spouse already knows how much you love them, but actually speaking them carries more weight than you realize. Telling your spouse on a DAILY basis that you love them can turn a marriage around greatly. Yes, of course, you need actions to back up what you speak. But speak that phrase to your spouse and watch as their face lights up.

2. “I value you.”  Hold up. But my spouse didn’t come from store? Is that even correct to say? ABSOLUTELY! Your spouse needs to hear that you value them. That you respect them as a person and don’t think of them as just someone you share life with. They need to know that they are valued. You hold them at a high priority in your life. And that they mean more to than football, shopping, friends, Facebook, work, etc. They need to know that you think of them as PRICELESS. They carry high value in your eyes.

3. “I appreciate you.” Oh this one carries so much weight with it. A lot of times we hear the complaint of how a husband doesn’t appreciate the wife, more so than hearing the reverse complaint. But this goes both ways. If you want your husband to appreciate you, ask yourself if you appreciate him. If you want your wife to appreciate you, ask yourself if you appreciate her. Do you notice the small things that he/she does every day? Laundry. Dishes. Cooking. Putting gas in the car. Checking your tires. Leaving the toilet seat down. Watching what you want to watch even though you know they don’t really care for it. The little things are often overlooked. But make it a point to start noticing them, and telling your spouse that you appreciate them

These 3 phrases may seem very simple, but I think we often find them difficult to speak aloud. I think though if we really want to see change in our marriages, we have to make it a point to speak these 3 phrases to our spouse daily. Lift one another up. Honor and respect one another. Pay attention to one another.

“Wives, in the same way submit yourselves to your own husbands……Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect…” 1 Peter 3:1 & 7

Grace & Peace, Jac

New|Year|New|Things


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Here we are. New Year’s Eve 2012. For some of us 2012 was fantastic. New job. Promotions. New home. New car. New relationships. New family members. New faith. Love. Health. Happiness. For others of us 2012 was difficult and heartbreaking. Loss of job. Loss of relationships. Loss of family members. Loss of faith. Loneliness. Depleting health. Sadness.

Whatever 2012 held for you, whether it was full of joy or full of sadness, it is curtains closing time on 2012. The sun is setting on 2012, and tomorrow the sun will rise on 2013. A new year. A new opportunity. A year that will bring many changes. A year that will bring new things for all of us. So, I pray that we not close out 2012 feeling discouraged. Feeling discouraged that if 2012 was a great year that 2013 could be the year that everything falls apart. Feeling discouraged that 2012 was a more than difficult year and that 2013 will only hold the same. No! I want us to leave 2012 and enter into 2013 full of optimism & hope. Full of life & wonder. Full of excitement.

My friends, 2013 is going to be our year! It’s going to be awesome! It’s going to be powerful! It’s going to be full of goodness! So hold on to your hats, because 2013 is going to be full of life, and it’s going to be AMAZING!

“Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:22-23, NIV

“See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” Isaiah 43:19, NIV

Grace & Peace,

Jaclyn

Still|Praying|For A|Miracle


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Here it is again. Yet another month of disappointment when it comes to the journey of trying for our “child of promise.” I try not to let it get the best of me. I try not to be bothered. I try not to get down about and get all negative. But somehow no matter how hard I try, I can’t help but feel defeated again. Every month of dream not coming true is another month of feeling knocked down. I know God has wonderful plans for me. I know He loves me and cares for me like no one else could ever possibly do. I know that He only wants the best for me, and that He doesn’t wish any harm upon me. Yes, I get all that. It’s not that I don’t know that or realize that. It’s not that I need to be reminded of His great love for me. It’s just the reality of human nature. No, I’m not copping out. I am not making excuses. I am just being real with you. I am being honest. God knows how I feel. He knows my hurts. He knows my desires. He knows everything about me. And yet, He still loves me despite myself. So, I think it’s ok for me to be honest about this.

This is one of the most difficult roads I have traveled. It is a personal road that I never expected to walk. I never thought that I would ever have to face the reality that fertility would not be an easy route for me. I mean I did get pregnant before. I have a beautiful full of life daughter to prove that. So, no infertility is not something that I thought would ever be part of my journey. But yet it is. Yet I find myself walking this road that I thought only happened to other people. Not me. Selfish thinking? Maybe. But it is the truth. Infertility isn’t suppose to be something that happens to people who have already conceived before. But oh, it does. It happens more than we realize. It’s not that I am not thankful for my precious daughter. It’s not that I don’t love her any less. It isn’t about thinking that she isn’t enough for me. I have a deep desire to be a mother again. I want to have a child with my husband. I want to share that bond with him, I want to share in the joy of pregnancy and birth with him. I want to feel a small miracle growing within my womb, and experience the joy of hearing his/her heartbeat. And the joy of feeling being kicked at all hours of the day and night by my precious gift. Once you have this desire, it doesn’t just go away. It’s not like wanting a new car or a new purse, or those new shoes. It is much deeper. And the deeper the desire, the harder it is to shake it.

Yes, I still pray and hope and believe for our child of promise. Yes, I still have faith. Yes, I still believe that God can do what seems impossible. But if I am going to be honest with God, myself, and you I have to admit that this road is difficult. I have to admit that sometimes I want to scream and yell, “I don’t want this road!” I have to be willing to fall flat on my face at the feet of Jesus and tell Him that I don’t understand. Tell Him that I am hurting. And then just let Him hold me as I do nothing but cry from the depths of my soul. I have to be willing to trust to Him, even when I find it hard to do so.

Lord, I will continue to look to you & your strength. I will continue to seek your face. (Psalm 105:4 for reference).

God-Given Dreams


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Do you dream? No, I’m not talking about the kind that you have when you’re sleeping. I want to know if you have the kind of dreams that set your heart a flutter. The kind of dreams that cause you to be a better person. The kind of dreams that you are determined to see become a reality. BIG dreams! Dreams so big that they almost scare you. Dreams so big that you have no idea how they will become a reality, but you just know they will.

These kind of dreams, my friend, are the dreams that I believe come from God. I believe these kind of dreams are “God-given” dreams. We have no idea how the will become reality, but yet we know they will. And I believe the reason that we “just know” they will become reality is because GOD will make a way. He will make the path straight. He will guide our steps. And He will go before us making a way. Yes, only God-given dreams can be BIG! God is big, so I wouldn’t expect the dreams He gives to His children to be anything but BIG.

So, what are some of your God-given dreams? Let’s share!

Some of mine are to be a Mommy again, to become a certified personal trainer, to minister alongside of my husband preaching the Gospel.  Ok, now it’s your turn…..

Opening the Bottle and Sharing My Story…..


This is not an easy blog post for me, but it is one that I feel God is leading me to share with you guys. Believe me when I say that it has got to be God doing the nudging on this, because I am a “bottler.” Yep, I tend to “bottle” things. I don’t like to share really personal things, and I have a tendency to respond with, “nothing” when asked, “what’s wrong?”, even though my face cannot hide that something is bothering me. But alas, here I am about to open the bottle and share something really personal. Not because I want to have everyone know my business, but because I feel that God is wanting me to share my story so that it might help someone else. So bear with me if this post isn’t all “rainbows & butterflies”, and if I come across a bit spastic. It’s about to get real peeps.

April 10, 2010 was one of the happiest days of my life. The sun was shining. The skies were crystal blue. And I was about to marry the man of my dreams. Oh yes, to say I was overjoyed on that day is an understatement. Our family & friends all gathered to watch as we said our vows and committed our lives to one another. As I looked into my husband’s eyes I not only felt the love he had for me, but I knew it. I knew this man loved me with everything within him. I was totally smitten with him (and still am). The day after our wedding we headed off to spend a week in Savannah, GA. (If you have never been there before, I highly recommend you go at least once. It is a beautiful & magical place.) We had so much fun eating, touring, relaxing, and eating some more during that week. We also began discussing in more detail what we wanted as a married couple. And of course kids was one of our topics of discussion.

We already had three kids. He had two boys from a previous marriage, and I had a daughter from a previous marriage. But we knew that we wanted to have a child together. So, we thought that since we already had three kids there would be no sense in putting it off. We decided to go ahead and begin pursuing having a child together.

“This won’t be hard,” I thought to myself. We will have a beautiful baby in no time! Well, months passed and still no baby. I didn’t worry too much to begin with, as it did take me a year to get pregnant with my daughter. Then, a few more months passed. By this time, I was beginning to panic a bit. I shared my concern with my husband, who of course told me not to worry and that it would happen. I decided to at least consult with my doctor just to make sure. She told me that she saw no reason that we shouldn’t get pregnant, since I had one successful pregnancy (a had a miscarriage a year after giving birth to my daughter) and my husband had fathered two children already. She told me to give it to the following spring, and if I still wasn’t pregnant to come back. Well, spring rolled around and still no baby. I went back to my doctor, who then suggested having some tests run. “Here we go,” I thought. “Let the science experiment begin.” She also suggested that I begin charting and using ovulation predicting kits (OPKs). I began charting, temping, and using OPKs.

The first test was hysterosalpingogram (HSG). For those of you who do not know what this is, it is where you have blue dye released into your uterus to see whether or not you have blocked fallopian tubes. I was a bit nervous over this, as I didn’t really know what to expect. During the test, my blood pressure actually dropped a bit (I am guessing due to my nerves) but the nurses instructed me that was normal, and they helped me to balance out. I had cramps afterward, but no major side effects. My doctor came to talk with me after the procedure, and she informed me that everything looked good. I was relieved. She then explained that some women become pregnant after these procedures, as it actually flushes the tubes and uterus a bit. That got me a bit hopeful.

The second test was having my husband tested. His test came back normal, so nothing to sweat on his end. Ok, more hope! Then, a few more months went by and still not baby. By this time I was asking my doctor to test my hormones or anything else that could be tested. I wanted answers! She referred me to an RE.

The RE tested my progesterone levels, which came back normal. The RE discussed the next steps to take and all the possible outcomes of it all, but by this time it was appointment time. (My husband is a United Methodist Pastor, so we can be moved at appointment time). We got the news that we would be moving. So, I contacted my RE and explained that I could no longer continue with my appointments due to us moving, as well as it was getting to be super expensive.

I was losing hope at this time. Yes, I still prayed. Yes, I still cried out to God asking for our little blessing. Yes, I still believed that He was a God of miracles. But let me tell you, when you are walking through a very dark valley, it becomes very difficult to be a ray of sunshine. Anybody relate? My husband still was encouraging me and trying to be supportive and positive. He kept telling me, “We will have our child of promise, just like Abraham & Sarah.” I know he was being supportive, but when he said that all I could think was, “Dear God, please don’t wait until I am 90 years old and my husband is in 100’s before you bless us with our child of promise.” Just being real here folks. I kept picturing Sarah in her old age, and thinking that I didn’t want to be old when I finally got pregnant!

I have heard, “Oh it will happen”and “You already had one child, so you know you can get pregnant again.” Although these come from good motives and intentions (and sweet people), they cut like a knife when IT ISN”T HAPPENING for you. As you watch as your friends and complete strangers announce their pregnancies and post pictures all over Facebook, while you sit and wait and wait and wait and wait. All the while trying to cling to a God who you know is forever faithful, but you can’t understand why He is allowing you to go through this.

You cry out to Him daily asking Him, “Why?” You tell Him that you are mad at Him, and that you know He has a great and wonderful plan for you, but the life of you, you just can’t see it at the moment. You tell Him that you don’t want to be bitter and resentful, and you want to be genuinely happy for the ones who ARE getting pregnant, but you are just finding it difficult to do. You tell Him you just want to scream at Him. You find yourself praying to Him, not really sure if He hears your prayers any more. You question if this is a punishment for past sins. And the list goes on and on.

I have no idea why God is allowing this valley in my life. I have no way of knowing if I will ever have the joy of being pregnant again. Maybe God is leading us in the direction of adoption. I can’t answer that right now. But what I can know for sure, is that with all my doubts, tantrums, fits, insecurities, and questions, my God IS forever faithful. He has not left my side even though I have felt as if He has at times. When I cry, He cries. When I hurt, He hurts. And right now, I feel Him leading me to share my story. There are more women like me out there. Women struggling with infertility in way or another. Whether it is first time infertility, unexplained secondary infertility (my case), or some other form of infertility the hurt is just the same. The struggle is just the same. If you are one of these women, YOU ARE NOT ALONE. And God has not abandoned you. I pray for you fellow sisters, and I hope that you won’t be afraid to share your story when the time is right.

I am still praying and believing for our child of promise (or children of promise). We even have names for them, Ada Willow Turner and Liam Eli Turner. Whether God blesses us with them through pregnancy or adoption, one day I will finally hold them in my arms.

Never give up beloveds. Never lose hope. Your Savior has you, cares for you, and loves you more than you can ever imagine.

“Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always.” Psalm 105:4 Image

The Elephant in the Room


Have you ever heard the phrase, “The elephant in the room”? It is commonly used when referring to a topic or some other thing that everyone knows is an issue but nobody really wants to address it. I know I have dealt with my fair share of these so-called elephants, and they really are no fun to deal with. Still, they MUST be dealt with. Some of these “elephants” are sins we have committed, sins other people have committed, wrongs that have been done to us or others, secrets, attitudes. And the list could go on and on. Wait a minute, you say?! Attitudes? How can attitudes be an “elephant in the room”? Yep, our attitudes can sometimes be the biggest of all the elephants.

Think about it. Don’t our attitudes carry a lot of weight? I mean really. When we are dealing with a certain situation in our lives (work, friendships, kids, spouses), our attitudes can make a big difference in how quickly and smoothly the situation is resolved. Our attitudes also have a great influence on if the situation continues to be a problem and if it becomes an even bigger problem. Maybe it’s high time we stop pointing the finger at the other party( or parties) involved, and took a long hard look at the elephant in the room….OUR OWN ATTITUDE. I know that probably hurt a little bit just reading it, but it is the truth. Maybe your boss is giving you a hard time, or one of your co-workers is just plain rude to you,  but how is your attitude? Maybe you have a friend who is taking advantage of you or has hurt you in some way, but how is your attitude? Maybe your kids are being unruly and disrespectful, but how is your attitude? Maybe your spouse isn’t listening to you or doesn’t help you as much as you would like, but how is your attitude? We can’t always be the victim in every situation. If we choose to have bad attitudes in any of these situations or any other situation we might find ourselves in, then we are as much to blame for that bad situation and have no room to point fingers.

Confront the elephant in the room! Make an adjustment to your attitude and stop pointing the finger. Own up to your elephant and deal with it!  I mean who really likes the elephant in the room anyway.

“Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?” Matthew 7:3

Grace and Peace

New Trend Alert: Parents Give Permission for Teen Sex in Home


This morning on The View they began discussing a topic that Elizabeth Hasselbeck will cover Wednesday morning on Good Morning America. What is the topic you ask: Sex and teens. Yes, I know this is a topic that has been in existence for a very long time, but this time it will be discussed in such a way that I am blown away by it. Elizabeth will be talking with teens, who range from 14-19 years in age, and their parents on the debate over a new trend of parents allowing their teens to have sex in their home! Yes, you heard me right. Some parents are now allowing their teens to have sex in their homes. The reason behind this new trend is that the parents are saying, “They are going to do it anyway, so it might as well be in my house so that I know about it.” The parents set rules as to when “the deed” can take place, if the parents have to be home at the time, and then the parents will supply all  the necessary “safety” precautions so the teens can carry it out. In the words of Hannah Montana, “Everybody say what?!” That is one of the most appalling things that I have heard, and it is one of the BIGGEST parenting mistakes that can be made. The panel was split on their opinions of this new trend. Whoopi & Joy were under the same reasoning as the parents (that teens are going to do it anyway, so you might as well know when and where), but Elizabeth and guest co-host La La Anderson shared a different opinion (not in my house). I like what La La Anderson had to say. She said, “My Momma made it absolutely impossible for us to have sex or do anything else. My Momma always told us that as long as we lived under her roof we had to follow all of her rules. So, there will be no sex for my children in the Anderson household!” Amen sistah!

As a Mother and a believer & follower of Jesus Christ, there is no way that I could ever be ok with my children having sex outside of wedlock, much less allowing them to have sex in my home! As a parent, I have great responsibility to raise my children to “live lives worthy of God” (see 1 Thessalonians 2:11-12). And as a believer and follower of Jesus Christ, I am to “flee from sexual immorality” ( see 1 Corinthians 6:18) The body of Christ cannot embrace this new trend, because it goes against who Jesus is. This is saddening to me. It is heartbreaking, for it is leading teens down a path that will take them far from Jesus.

My challenge to all of us today, is to pray for our teens & pray for ALL parents. Live lives worthy of God, so that our children will see the example of Christ and walk in that way. The way of the world is a dark and lonely place. That is not a place we want to lead our children, but the way of Christ is way of light and life.

What do you think of this new trend?

Grace and Peace

Is Your Marriage A Def Lepard Jam Session or Elevator Music Snooze Fest?


 I have had marriage on my heart lately. My heart is heavy for struggling marriages. It saddens me to hear of marriages falling apart, couples who have become strangers, and marriages that just seem to be at a stand still. This is not at all what God desires for marriages. Marriages should be flourishing, thriving, and growing. (I am not saying that it will be easy, so don’t go all whacked out on me here.) But God wants the best for us, and that includes our marriages!  But it does require effort on our part (*gasp*, you mean we actually have to do something?!) Yep, you heard me right. We have to WORK at keeping our marriages flourishing, thriving, and growing.

As I was driving yesterday, I popped the Def Lepard CD in the CD player and cranked it up (hang with me, I have a point to this madness). As the CD began to play “Pour Some Sugar on Me” (my Mom is probably shaking her head at this), I began thinking on marriage again. Yes, Def Lepard brought marriage to my mind. I began thinking, “What if all marriages were more like a Def Lepard jam session, rather than a grocery store/elevator music snooze?” What if marriages were rockin’ instead of dropping? When we feel that our marriage is more like an elevator music snooze fest, rather than a Def Lepard rock out session we need to put effort into cranking it up. We have to fight for our marriages, and not just give up. You may be saying, “But you don’t understand. He leaves the toilet seat up all the time.”  “He/She doesn’t understand me.” “He doesn’t take time with me.” “She nags me all the time.” “We just drifted, and I am not sure of how to get back to each other.” Well, all of these things may be true, but that doesn’t mean you have to throw in the towel and give up. Here are some things that you can do starting today to put the “rockin” back in your marriage:

1. LOVE your spouse. Even if you are not feeling “in love” with your spouse, love them anyway. Love is not just a feeling, it is a verb. Put love into action. Show love by doing something for your spouse that you know they will appreciate (let him go play golf or go fishing, buy her favorite box of chocolates for her just because, fix his cup of coffee in the morning, help her with dinner, etc.). Show love. Take action!

2. Pray. God is there. He knows how you feel. Talk to Him about it. Ask for His guidance, His strength, and His grace. Don’t work out of your own strength. Turn to God and lean on Him. Pray with your spouse too. Prayer is such an intimate tool that God has blessed us with, and it is beyond powerful!

3. Forgive. Yep, forgive your spouse. Let go of the things that nag you about your spouse. Don’t hang on to things that aren’t worth the time and energy. The toilet seat being left up is NOT a major issue. Her choice of movies is NOT a major issue. If your spouse offends you or hurts your feelings, let them know this (in a kind and gentle manner) and then forgive them. Don’t hold grudges. Offer grace to one another.

4. Celebrate. Celebrate the good in each other. Look for the good things in your spouse, and celebrate them. Give encouragement instead of always pointing out the things that you don’t you like about your spouse. Build each other up by celebrating each other. Everyone loves a celebration! Celebration and encouragement go a long way (much longer than those nagging words).

I pray that whatever stage your marriage is in right now, that your marriage will flourish, thrive, and grow. I pray that your marriage will be a Def Lepard jam session and not an elevator music snooze fest. It’s gonna be tough some days, but it is worth the hard work. So, crank it up & have a rockin marriage!

*If you are in an abusive relationship please seek professional & pastoral counseling.

Grace & Peace

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