Girl Please!

Help Mate

Sometimes it seems we could fulfill our biblical role as wives a lot easier if our husbands would simply do what they are called to do.If they would cultivate a stronger prayer life, we would feel better about following their lead. If they were growing through regular study of Scripture, we would be honored to submit. If they loved us as Christ loved the church, we would shower them with respect.But our calling doesn’t hinge upon how faithfully our husbands are walking out theirs. We stand before the Lord alone, and we do all as unto him. And the reality is that it’s easier to see where someone else is lacking — especially when that someone lives under the same roof, with habits and idiosyncrasies we’ve dissected for years. We can become nit-picky and critical about where they need to be and miss the myriad shortcomings we possess ourselves.Still, it is a very real issue if our husbands are not cultivating spiritual disciplines such as prayer and Bible study. And if love is lacking, it’s downright heartbreaking. How do we set aside our own hurt and frustration and live out our calling as Christian wives? How do we follow a shepherd who is not adequately shepherding? Here are three ways to love your imperfect husband.1. Pray for Your HusbandAs wives, prayer is our strongest ministry toward our husbands. The mindset is not, “I guess I’ll pray since nothing else is working.” Rather, it is a mind that is fully persuaded that prayer should be first and foremost — and that it’s the most powerful and effective service we can offer our husbands.We are able to pray for our husbands as no one else can. We see his ups and downs, his moods and attitudes, and his strengths and vulnerabilities. We see what he devotes his time to. By his words and actions, we see his heart toward the things of God. What we do with this insight is key. We can attempt to “fix” things ourselves — with nudges that turn to nagging, or correction that morphs to criticism. Or we can trust the Good Shepherd to do the work in his timing and in his power.“Wives, you have the ability to intercede for your husband in a way that no one else can. Pray hard and often.”Prayer invites Jesus to dwell in the midst of the cares and concerns we have for our husbands. It changes the dynamic. We’re no longer focusing on the problem but on the one who can solve it. We are reminded that nothing is too hard for God. Just as the king’s heart is like channels of water in the Lord’s hand, such that he can turn it wherever he will (Proverbs 21:1), our husband’s heart is fully accessible and pliable in the hand of the Lord. He’s able to turn his heart toward him. Through our prayers, we join forces with our husbands to bring about change.Praying for our husbands does a work in our own hearts as well. Our hearts are softened as we intercede. We gain humility and compassion as we realize that we both, husband and wife, are flawed and in desperate need of grace. This is especially significant if one’s husband does not know Jesus as Lord. Our prayers are a fresh reminder of the saving grace we received, which God is able to pour out on our husbands to bring about redemptive change.2. Encourage Your HusbandBeing called by God as head of the home is not an enviable burden. Our husbands shoulder expectations and responsibilities before God that are immense, including the depth to which they are called to love. Wives are called simply to love their husbands (Titus 2:4), while husbands are called to love their wives as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her(Ephesians 5:25). No matter how strong one’s walk with God, sacrificial love is a daunting standard. Indeed, the breadth of the divine standard for husbands — of love, of providing for the family, of guiding the family spiritually — may cause them more stress than we realize.Although our eyes naturally fall on areas in which our husbands need to improve, we should instead look for ways to bless them with encouragement. This is not necessarily easy, especially if we’ve seen a pattern of certain behavior over time. We may be skeptical about any positive change. It won’t last might drift through our minds. We may even be tempted to belittle efforts that our husbands make, regarding them as inadequate.But as we intercede for our husbands, our attitude and actions should line up with the end goal. We should believe that change is possible and encourage even the small movements we see. As we speak words that build up and give grace (Ephesians 4:29), we not only revitalize our husbands, but our marriage as well.3. Die to YourselfThe only way we can truly walk out our calling as wives despite our own hurts and frustrations is to die to self. This is our ultimate call as believers: to daily crucify our flesh so that Christ may live fully through us. And when Christ is living through us, we experience the surpassing greatness of his power.“God knows we cannot be the wives he calls us to be in our own strength. Thankfully, he does not expect us to.”God knows we cannot be the wives he calls us to be in our own strength — and thankfully, he does not expect us to. When self gets out of the way, his Spirit takes over, infusing us with immense grace and strength. We are able to pray when we’re tired of praying and to love when the “feeling” eludes.Grace highlights ways we can encourage, seasons our speech, and quiets our spirits. And as we wait on Jesus to answer our prayers for our husbands, his grace keeps our eyes fixed on him, our Good Shepherd, the one we are ultimately called to follow. Here lies an eternal treasure. As we walk in obedience to our calling as wives, we find ourselves in blessed fellowship with our Lord.

Girl Please!

Stay In your Lane

“Flee from sexual immorality.”

1 Corinthians 6:18

A few years ago, I watched a friend get tangled up in an emotional affair. She was a strong Christian woman who loved her family but the attraction to this other man seemed unavoidable. She tried to talk herself out of it but her heart played tricks on her mind, and the justifications for letting things continue down this path soon led her to a very dangerous place. She was becoming emotionally attached to this other man.

In a moment of desperation and fear, she confided in me what was going on. As she described how she got pulled into this place, I found myself being challenged by the realization of how subtly this had happened. She hadn’t planned on being emotionally attracted to this other man. As a matter of fact, she’d always prided herself on being a woman of strong conviction and had scoffed at the idea of ever being tempted to have an affair.

It starts off simple enough – his comment that you mull over one too many times, a conversation in which you find a surprising connection, a glance that lingers just a second too long, or one of a thousand other interactions that seem innocent yet aren’t. These are the dangerous seeds that can easily sprout into an emotional affair.

Some think it is a safe way to enjoy the lure of being attracted to someone other than your spouse without crossing any lines. But God boldly and plainly says in 1 Corinthians 6:18, “Flee from sexual immorality.” God doesn’t say walk away from sexual immorality. No, He says to flee as if your very life is at stake! The time to prevent an emotional affair is before it ever starts. For me to rest on my spiritual laurels and think that it could never happen to me, made me a prideful, open target for Satan.

Jesus warned his disciples in Matthew 26:41,”Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak.” The Life Application NIV Bible commentary says, “Jesus used Peter’s drowsiness to warn him about the kinds of temptation he would soon face. The way to overcome temptation is to keep watch and pray. Watching means being aware of the possibilities of temptation, sensitive to the subtleties, spiritually equipped to fight it.”

Watching: I now realize that I need to be aware that I am just as prone to this temptation as anyone. One of the best ways to be watchful is to be praying with and for my husband. We need to be open and honest about meeting each other’s needs and investing wisely in our marriage. If we get into a rough place, we need to be willing to get help. I love the quote, “If you are busy rowing the boat, you won’t have time to rock it.” The more my husband and I are taking care of each other, the less attractive temptations will seem.

Sensitive to the Subtleties: I will have to be honest with myself that temptations do exist. When another man says or does something I wish my husband would say or do and doesn’t, it can make me lessen my husband in my heart and build up this other man. This is a seed of poison. If watered and fed, this seed will sprout and spread and devastate. Seeds seem so small until you realize that within them they contain the potential to become huge. So, I will be steadfast to keep the fertile ground of my heart pure.

Spiritually Equipped: Philippians 4:8 reminds us, “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things” (NIV). I must park my mind with the truth and the truth is I am married to an amazing man. He is not perfect and sometimes our marriage can be hard, but I made a commitment to Him in a covenant before God and there are no Biblical reasons in our marriage why we should ever part. Therefore, I’ve made the decision not to part – in big ways or small.

My friend did the wisest but hardest thing she could have done in telling me about her emotional affair. Not only did it help her to see she needed to flee and have someone else hold her accountable, but it also made me aware and alert to the dangers lurking in any kind of unhealthy emotional connection with another man.

Dear Lord, may I forever treasure my marriage and see it worthy to be protected. Help me to be a courageous woman who absolutely flees from any and every situation where there is even a hint of danger. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Girl Please!

Are You A Ruth?

Wisdom for women for godly dating and relationships:

A wise and godly woman knows that if he isn’t answering his phone or your text messages, emails, etc., he’s just not that into you. Let him go. Stop waiting for that phone to ring.

A wise and godly woman knows that if you have to show off your cleavage and breasts to get his attention, he is not the one. Your heart and character should be what makes you attractive to him. Not your butt, breasts, hips, etc. If you dress like trash you will be treated like trash.

A wise and godly woman knows that if he you have to beg him to spend time with you and your kids, he’s not the one. A man who really loves you will make room in his schedule for you and your children.

A wise and godly woman knows that if he doesn’t have respect for you, your parents, his own parents or people in authority, he’s not the one. A good man will respect and treat his family and people in authority honorably. He will honor his parents so that it will go well with him all his days.

A wise and godly woman knows that if he is leading you away from God, he is not the right one. A good man will lead you closer to the Lord. He will attend church with you, read the word, worship God on a daily basis. His conduct and actions will reflect his relationship with God. He will inspire you to grow spiritually.

A wise and godly woman knows that she can’t make him be ready to be husband material. He either is or isn’t. Don’t waste your time trying to change him. No amount of sweetness on your part can make him be a righteous man.

A wise and godly woman knows that a godly man will respect your body and your boundaries. He will not try to take away your purity or God given privilege of sex without marrying you first. He won’t pressure you to compromise. If he can’t wait, then he’s not the one.

A wise and godly woman knows that if your relationship has to be in hiding or in secret, then it’s not real love. Nothing should be hidden in the dark, but be in the light.

A wise and godly woman knows that if he lies to you and he is deceptive about things, he will lie again. Don’t expect him to tell the truth. You will be on a continuous carousel cycle….Going around and around. Get off the ride, Darling.

A wise and godly woman knows that if he really loves you he will not try to change or control you. He will appreciate your differences and promote your strengths. He will celebrate you for who you are.

A wise and godly woman knows that if he’s hit you once or even threatened to raise a hand to you- He’s not the one. One time of violence is too many times. His anger issues will not just disappear. Run and don’t ever look back. A godly man would never threaten or try to harm you. He will only protect you.

A wise and godly woman knows that just because he has some good qualities, it does not mean he’s meant to be your life partner. What he is now is what he will be later, even after you walk down the aisle. Marriage does not change his heart or character. You deserve the whole package. Don’t settle because you are lonely.

A wise and godly woman knows that being unequally yoked does not just mean not sharing the same faith. It also means you both need compatible dreams, goals, vision, and callings. It means being on the same page concerning your destiny. Just because he is a Christian does not mean you should be united as one. A house divided cannot stand.

A wise and godly woman knows that his words are nothing unless he can back them up with his actions. Words and actions go together and must be consistent. Flattering words do not mean he will treat you well. Out of the abundance of the heart, a mouth will speak. Take notice, because there also will be proof behind the words he says. Don’t ever forget that.

A wise and godly woman knows that if he can’t keep a job, balance his account, pay his bills, and be wise with his money and spending, it’s not a good situation to be in. A godly man will pay his tithes and offerings and trust God with his money. If he doesn’t do this consistently, he’s not the one. You deserve to be provided and cared for.

A wise and godly woman knows that if he has addictions (smoking, drinking, gambling, pornography, sex, etc.) no amount of love from you can overcome the heaviness and weight of his chains. Your life will be a living hell, as you will be chained to his sins. He is not the one. You can’t deliver him. Only God can, and then only if he makes the decision for himself.

A wise and godly woman knows that if he has cheated before, he most likely will again. If he’s cheating with you, then he will cheat on you. Adultery does not make a marriage or a God blessed relationship.

A wise and godly woman knows that if he really loves you, he will protect you, provide for you, cherish you, lead you, comfort you, celebrate you, and appreciate you. He will make you feel safe. He will honor you. If something is lacking in any of these areas, he’s not the one.

A wise and godly woman knows that if he can’t embrace and love your children, he’s not the one. A godly man will see you and your children as a blessing, not an inconvenience. You are a package deal. You and your kids are precious cargo. Never compromise your children for romance. A godly man would not expect you to.

A wise and godly woman knows that if he’s not striving, growing, making goals, reaching for dreams, or moving forward, your life together is going to be stagnant, boring and full of frustrations. Without vision, people perish.

A wise and godly woman knows that her dreams, her goals, and her aspirations will matter to the one who truly loves her. He will believe in you, support, and encourage you in your dreams. He will speak life into your destiny.

A wise and godly woman knows that love should not hurt too much. It should not be taking away your peace, your joy, you self confidence or your spirit. If you feel worse in his presence, and feel like you can never measure up, then he is not the one. Run…run fast! You deserve better. Love should add to your life. Not take away.

A wise and godly woman knows that he should be growing spiritually on his own. He should be able to maintain his personal relationship with God. His life and his decisions should be based on the Word and character of God -even when the church doors are closed. There should be fruit in his life. You will know a believer by their fruits.

A wise and godly woman knows that a godly man should always treat her like a lady. He should open the car door, let you enter first when walking into a building, pull out your chair, pay for dinner, be respectful and have manners with you at all times. He should never use profanity in your presence or call you names that are hurtful. If you expect to be treated like a lady, then you will be. If not, he’s not the one.

A wise and godly woman knows that a godly man will be honest about his intentions toward you. He will not play childish mind games or lead you along if he has no true interest in commitment. If he wants to be in your life, he will be consistent. You won’t have to beg him for his attention or his physical presence in your life.

A wise and godly woman knows that she should let a man know what she expects of him in a relationship. She is honest and forthcoming, and doesn’t take advantage of his generosity. She will respect him and honor him -both publicly and privately. She will desire to be a blessing every day of his life. If you can’t do this with him, then you are not the right one for him. He deserves your best.

A wise and godly woman knows that God’s chosen best is worth waiting for. Trying to mold a man into the box of what you desire in a mate is cruel and unfair to any man. Wait on God, and don’t settle for less than His best for you.

A wise and godly woman knows that the way you treat him and make him feel in your presence is what he will remember -more than the dress or shoes you wore.

A wise and godly woman knows that respect starts with herself, her standards, her expectations, and her priorities. It starts with her and she should let a man know up front how she expects to be treated. A good man will respect you and honor you for this. All these things should be based and founded by the word of God.

A wise and godly woman knows that he should appreciate and respect your body the way it is. If he’s asking you to change your size, dye your hair, etc., he doesn’t love you for you. However I do feel a godly woman should strive to maintain her health, exercise and eat responsibly. A good man will see you as beautiful just the way you are on fabulous days and frump girl days. Your beauty will be enough just the way you are.

A wise and godly woman knows that if he says he’s not ready for or desiring marriage, and he isn’t looking for a commitment, be wise and don’t waste your life waiting for him to change his mind. If he already sees you as his wife, he won’t need to be convinced.

A wise and godly woman knows that if you keep circling a bush about the same problems with him, guess what? You are going to keep circling around that bush. A healthy relationship can deal with and solve problems together. If you are still fighting about the same thing, it’s going to remain that way when you are married.

A wise and godly woman knows that a godly man will seek after God’s will concerning your relationship. Your love will be Christ centered. Your decisions and the direction of your relationship will be accomplished with united prayer and seeking God’s word and His plan. This is a spiritual leader. The way he leads you before marriage matters.

A wise and godly woman knows that a godly man will not walk out and abandon you. He won’t be leaving when there are obstacles or struggles. He will face challenges with you. He won’t be disappearing and reappearing. You are not a yo-yo. Your heart is precious and he should handle it gently and honorably. Not be stringing you back and forth.
A wise and godly woman knows that no amount of your love, sweetness, etc. can change a man who chooses to be a boy. Only God can change him- if and when he makes his decision for God. Wasting your heart, tears, time, and dreams on a bad boy is a BAD choice. You are God’s daughter, and you deserve better than that. ~

Written by Jenny Williams, A Modern Day Ruth. Copyright
August 9th 2013.

Girl Please!

Uncomfortable


God, help me, please!”

I believe God loves those prayers. There’s never a wrong time to pray, though sadly it may be the only time He hears from some of us.

Such a prayer might assume, however, that God wants us happy, comfortable, and satisfied. That’s perhaps partially true, especially in the ultimate sense. But the Bible talks at least as much about how important our discomfort is to God. Sometimes God wants you uncomfortable.

“You mean God does NOT want me happy, comfortable, and satisfied?”

God created you for something much more than happiness, at least in the way we usually think about happiness. Our natural concept of our existence is much too shallow, much too tame, and much too comfortable.

Think of a time in your life when you felt the worst. Perhaps you were depressed, or anxious, or lonely. If you’re like most people you probably wanted to stay in bed or veg out in front of the TV. From the outside you might have looked “comfortable,” but you were actually more than miserable.

Now think of time when you felt most fully alive. It might have been when you created something beautiful, accomplished a major goal, or made a life-altering connection with someone. Perhaps you hiked to the top of a mountain and felt like you could see the whole world. The joy you experienced came as a result of taking a risk, pushing yourself beyond what you thought you could do, or giving of yourself extravagantly. It took something out of you, and the fulfillment you received in return was all the more valuable because of how uncomfortable you had been along the way.

Jesus spoke often about the importance of our discomfort. In the Beatitudes He called people “Blessed” who are grieving, hungry or poor in spirit, or suffering persecution for His sake. (Matthew 5:1-12) You’re not going to be “hungry for righteousness sake” if you’re too comfortable.

There were many times Jesus asked pointed questions or told stories that greatly disturbed some of those listening. Some people, especially the children or sick people, loved being around Jesus. Others, especially many of the leaders, couldn’t wait to get rid of Him. Jesus clearly made some people extremely uncomfortable.

He came to “comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable.”

Shortly after His resurrection Jesus met two men walking home from Jerusalem, and joined them incognito. The men were anxious and upset, and Jesus didn’t immediately go about soothing them. They later described their hearts as “burning within them” during their conversation with Jesus. (Luke 24:32)

If you are experiencing a season of Divine Discontent, don’t constantly demand Rolaids for your “heartburn”. Pay attention to your burning heart, and listen to what God wants to say to you or do with you.

Your burning, uncomfortable heart may mean God is trying to:

  • Have you unlearn some old ways of thinking or behaving
  • Stretch you into a new area of increased effectiveness
  • Uncover a ungodly character trait in you that He wants to transform
  • Raise your sights beyond yourself to see others in need
  • Push you to become someone capable of much greater responsibility
  • Invite you to be an effective agent in spiritual warfare for His kingdom

Are you uncomfortable? Consider whether God may be behind it, and see where the warmth of your burning heart may take you.

Your Turn:

Are you uncomfortable? Do you think God might be behind it? What do you think He might be trying to get across to you in your burning heart?

Girl Please!

Know Your Limits

A rubber band can only be stretched so far before it breaks. Some are stronger than others but they all have limits. In life don’t become so holy that you forget you are human.

Everyone has a limit before breaking but we sometimes want what we can’t or shouldn’t have/ and do what we shouldn’t do Know your limits and prevent unnecessary breaking. Psalms 90:12