Tag Archive | Relationships

Today

Today was a day of devotion, reflection, education, and introspection.

Doesn’t that sound impressive?! If you want to know the details, continue reading.

My days are generally quite scheduled, but today was a rare exception with not one thing penciled on the calendar. I hardly know what to do on such days! I could have cleaned the house, done some laundry, or baked, but I decided to focus on reconnecting with myself, my husband, and friends.

My husband and I like to begin our day with a short Bible reading together. We have just begun a devotional book that focuses on marriage, and each day has discussion questions. Today’s questions had us think back to our dating years, and reflect on how God brought us together. Thirty-eight years ago was fun to revisit!

I was in Arkansas the 4 weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas. It was a pleasure  helping my daughter with childcare (AKA playing with grandsons all day). Oh what fun that was!! However, since then I’ve felt a disconnect with the ladies from church. It just so happens there is a ladies Bible study on Thursday mornings. This was a perfect opportunity to reconnect plus study God’s Word together. Following the study, I had lunch with a close friend at our favorite local coffee shop. Such sweet fellowship was shared!

When I arrived home, the sunshine beckoned me to come out and play. My road is much to muddy for a brisk walk, so to the lake I went.

IMG_3035

The peaceful environment and lack of interruptions and distractions allowed my thoughts to bounce from one topic to another. This hour of walking and contemplating was quite energizing.

My day may sound boring, lazy, or mundane to you, but it was rejuvenating to me. It all boils down to perspective. That is why I saw my day filled with devotion, reflection, education, and introspection.

Teach us to number our days,
    that we may gain a heart of wisdom.
Psalm 90:12 NIV

 

Forgive

Leading to Easter, I have looked for new or renewed insight in the death and resurrection of Jesus. As I read, my eyes and thoughts keep lingering on the word and action FORGIVE. Not forgive if…., or forgive when…., just forgive.

What a nightmare! Jesus was betrayed and disowned by some of his closest followers, friends, brothers. He then endured some of the most inhumane abuse. He was mocked, taunted, stripped, beaten….nailed to a cross to die while a murderer was set free. The mocking and taunting continued as he hung in pain. YET Jesus forgave.

 Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing.” Luke 23:34 NLT

Still, the verbal abuse continued. Two criminals were also crucified that day; one on each side of Jesus. One of those criminals joined in with the jeering. The other criminal reprimanded him, and said they were getting what they deserved, but that Jesus had done nothing wrong.

 But the other criminal protested, ‘Don’t you fear God even when you have been sentenced to die?  We deserve to die for our crimes, but this man hasn’t done anything wrong.’ Then he said, ‘Jesus, remember me when you come into your Kingdom.’

And Jesus replied, ‘I assure you, today you will be with me in paradise.'” Luke 23:40-43 NLT

Jesus forgave. This is the example we have of forgiveness. Jesus will forgive us, and He wants us to forgive others. In Matthew 7:1-2, Jesus said, “Do not judge others, and you will not be judged.  For you will be treated as you treat others. The standard you use in judging is the standard by which you will be judged.” NLT   God holds us to the same standards we hold for others.

Do I forgive readily? Do I put conditions on my forgiveness? God forgives without condition. I should recognize my need to forgive others with the humility of having been forgiven for so much myself. I need to forgive whether the offender is remorseful, apologizes, or asks for forgiveness.

When we harbor unforgiveness, in the long run it hurts us more than the offender. We let it simmer and fester causing bitterness, resentment, and hate to build within us. It makes us miserable, and soon we make those around us miserable as well. In Hebrews, we are warned to watch out, and not let bitterness take root in our lives because it will cause trouble to many. (see Heb. 12:15)

Now, there are two things I want you to ponder. First, do you need to ask Jesus to forgive you? We all are sinners, and need His forgiveness. Ask Him to forgive you today. He will forgive you. Second, are you holding on to a grudge? Do you need to forgive someone? Don’t wait; forgive now!

Praying for Him

How often do you pray for your husband, or do you? As the leader of the family, husbands have incredible responsibilities weighing on them. Rather than nagging, complaining or criticizing, praying for him daily is key for any Christian wife.

There are so many different things to pray about: health, work, knit-picky things that would drive any woman crazy. Don’t stop there. Have you thought about praying for his integrity and reputation? It is often the husband’s reputation that sets the status for the family. A good reputation can take years to build, yet it only takes an instant to tear down.

Dear God, May he trust in You and not be afraid of what man can do to him. (Ps.56:11)

Do you pray for him to be strong and able to flee temptation? We would be naive to think that our husbands will not face temptation. Evil is all around, so pray he will be able to take a stand against whatever temptations are thrown at him, and that he will see the way out that God will provide.

“The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.” 1 Cor. 10:13 NLT

What happens when he fails? Too many times, wives are quick to point out the failure over and over. Instead, he needs love, forgiveness and support from his wife.

“Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.” Ephesians 4:32 NLT

Do you pray for your husbands relationship with God, his spiritual journey?

Dear God, Your word says that those who are still under the control of their sinful nature can never please you. (Rom. 8:8) So I ask that you would help my husband walk in your spirit and produce fruit of the Holy Spirit in his life: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. (Gal. 5:22,23) Let him follow the Spirit’s leading in every part of his life.

These are only a few topics to pray about; the list could go on and on. To see change and growth in your husband, you and your marriage, daily pray for him.