Embracing the Fruit of the Spirit within your marriage “Joy” Part 2

Embracing the Fruit of the Spirit within your marriage “Joy”

Couple in Grass
Part 2

Joy can be exhilarating and refreshing! Wow! You feel as though you are literally bursting at the seams as though you are elevated to a level of almost inexpressible happiness! Joy at times just brings a quiet warm feeling of inner contentment. Joy is a fruit of God’s Spirit!

God wants you to delight yourself within Him your marriage and life itself. He wants us to have joy! This does not mean that you won’t go through some things, you will. Be open and honest with one another and continuously make your marriage a priority. Joy will help you weather the tempestuous storms of life as they arise. It is from your happier moments you can draw from, when turbulence of any kind hits your marriage.

Marriage is about having a committed relationship! Fidelity is important! Building strong healthy marital boundaries is also important! It is within marriage you can become closer as you build an intimate, trusting and transparent union. It is within a loving marriage you both can freely learn to seek pleasure in one another without shame or embarrassment! The Word of God teaches us that; “The Joy of the Lord is your strength!” Nehemiah 8.

Within marriage you can learn to freely give of yourselves to one another! Affection in marriage is important! Every physical encounter does not necessarily have to lead to sexual intercourse. Snuggling can be most comforting. Resting in the arms of one another can be a welcomed safe haven to look forward to.

Embracing joy!

You can learn to rise together to challenges, realizing that they are but for a season and do not define your marriage! Endeavor together to not allow discouragement take up residence although disappointed! Nip things in the bud whenever possible…

The Lord is the true vine and we are the branches! When we remain connected to Him the fruit of His Spirit will continue to flourish within us! God did not design marriage to leave us on our own to be without His assistance. God wants you to have a husband or wife that is willing to commit for life to building a strong healthy loving marriage. He said that “it was not good for man to be alone. I will make him a suitable helper.” Genesis 1.

Bone of my bone!

How you together express yourselves physically is between the two of you! There should be mutual respect and consideration for one another. Together you can learn how to pleasure and romance one another. When you both are fulfilled physically there is no need to look elsewhere. This will help you fireproof your marriage from the perils of infidelity! The Word teaches us that, “You have stolen my heart, my sister, my bride, you have stolen my heart with on glance of your eyes, with on jewel of your necklace. How delightful is your love, my sister my bride! How much more pleasing is your love than wine and the fragrance of your perfume than any spice! Your lips drop sweetness as the honeycomb, my bride; milk and honey are under your tongue…” Song of Songs 4. Song of Songs contains a marvelous wealth of passionate poetic scriptures that can enrich and enhance your marriage and love life!

Whoever you join yourself to becomes part of you! As your hearts continue to knit together you both can learn to freely share the essence of who you are intimately, spiritually, emotionally and physically. Marriage is about two becoming; “bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh.” Genesis 1. You are the most invaluable gift that you have to give to your spouse! Oneness within marriage brings supreme joy!

Having a date night is important! Refresh your marriage and keeping the embers of love burning. This keeps your marriage interesting and your joy flowing! A committed monogamous marriage creates an environment where you both can safely get your needs met! Devotion and commitment are key ingredients in any marriage! Make it a goal to live a life of quality! When we love with godly love, we can also experience His lasting love, joy & peace!

Part 3

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How Do I Love Thee:Food For Thought Before You Say “I DO” – Kindle Countdown Promotion

How Compatible are We? Ready for Intimacy? Commitment? The Marriage Bed? In-laws or Out-laws?

How Do I Love Thee:Food For Thought Before You Say “I DO” is a mini-premarital guide to be used by couples, counselors, and clergy. It addresses many of the major subjects couples should discuss prior to marriage.Included are interactive lessons and assignments for the couple which are designed to motivate serious thought about love, compatibility, commitment, finances, accountability, responsibility, dealing with the in-laws, the marriage bed, and more.

A Kindle Countdown promotion will run on Amazon from 1/2/2016 – 1/9/2016. During this period you can get a limited-time discount on this premarital book.

Starting 1/2/2016 you can download a copy of the book starting at $ .99. Click on the book to visit Amazon and pick up your copy. The sooner you purchase, the larger the discount.

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Why Marriage God’s Way is Important Part 1


Why marriage God’s Way is Important!

Part 1

There are an endless expansive array of life lessons. We will encounter many upon traveling this remarkable journey during the course of life. If you are a believer getting to better know our Lord, Creator & Maker; “The Most High God” is most important. It is imperative to spend personal time in His Word! It is through His Word we are better able to understand why He has created us. Within His Word we are taught how to better navigate through the seen and unseen spiritual warfare that is designed to take us off course.

 

A little history how marriage began

Early on in His Word we are taught the origins of mankind and marriage. We can learn much from Adam & Eve who were the firstly married couple. The Lord created Adam first. The Lord God formed man out of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul. And the Lord planted a garden eastward in Eden; and there He put the man that He had formed.” Genesis 2 The Garden of Eden is where the Lord intended for Adam & Eve to live a well-rounded abundant life. Here in Eden God had provided them within this marvelous lush green haven everything that they would ever need. He told the man Adam to attend the garden. He even told Adam “that from every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat. But of the tree of the knowledge of GOOD & evil thou shalt not eat; for in that day thou eatest thereof thou shalt die. And the Lord God said, it is not good that the man should be alone, I will make him a help meet for him.” Genesis 2

 

 

The Lord then provided Adam with a wife. She was created from his very own rib bone that was taken while he was asleep. The Lord brought the woman to Adam. Here we learn about God’s original superlative model for marriage.

 

One Man + One woman = Marriage God’s Way!

 

 

Marriage God's Way = One Man & One Woman

Marriage God’s Way = One Man & One Woman

God has not changed His unique design. From the marital union of Adam and Eve, mankind that we know as the human race was birthed into existence by God. God told them to be fruitful and multiply.

My how things have changed in this 21st century. I realize that the Supreme Court voted against the WORD of GOD! But we who say we are believers have made a commitment to HIS WORD. That is why we are called believers. GOD is gracious and gives us all the freedom to choose. We must pray for discernment so we can better judge what is or is not of the Lord!

 

 

Adam was an extremely highly intelligent man, so much so that he even named all of the animals. He was given dominion over everything that the Lord had created. In Adam’s original state he was innocent, sinless and created in the image of God. The Lord spoke to Adam directly. There are numerous references within the Word that confirms the origins of marriage between a man & woman. Adam is the forefather of the human race. Eve was actually named by her husband Adam, but this was only after she was seduced by the serpent. Before she and Adam were known as one and the same.

Eve listened to the devil who was in the form of a serpent, instead of obeying God. She was named Eve because she was now to become the mother of all the living. Before she sinned GOD brought forth life peacefully from Adam. Now she would bear children in pain. She willfully chose to eat the forbidden fruit when God had adamantly told Adam that they were not supposed to do so. Eve then convinced Adam to do the same.

Adam knew better. Because of their disobedience, sin now enters their lives. They are no longer feel welcomed in their God given Garden of Eden as their glorious habitat and their sin separates them from God. Therefore they hide and become ashamed for the very first time. They then hide in the trees from God who had given them everything! Adam & Eve hear the sound of the Voice of The Lord while He was walking in the garden. Adam and Eve were then banished from the Garden of Eden.

Today we can learn much from this lesson. God knows what is best for us. Eve should have ignored the serpent and held fast to the Lord’s command. We must hold fast to our marriage vows. Invite God into the center of your marriage. We do not have to repeat the past but daily seek to improve our future. When you honor your “Own” husband you honor God. Always encourage one another to embrace the Will & Way of God!

God is The Great “I AM” and there is no other above HIM. HE is A GOD of order and we so need HIS WORD & HIS HOLY SPIRIT to guide us in the path of righteousness.

 

Part 2

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Marriage: A Covenant Agreement

Marriage is one of the greatest relationship commitments that a man and a woman can have. It is an agreement to Love, Honor, Trust and Respect your spouse for life! Marriage is also a covenant agreement not only between a man and a woman but it is an agreement with God. You both together pledge and make vows that should always be honored within your marriage…

If you are already married reflect back for a moment on your Wedding Vows. What did you pledge to one another? Those vows are so much more than words. So if you have not married and are planning on getting married really think about what you are agreeing or pledging to do! If you have been married before really think things through because you have been here before! You are entering into a contract not only of the letter but of the heart as well as legally.

If you are not married get wise counsel before you enter into marriage. In this 21st century more than 55% of marriages are ending in divorce. This should not be. Many enter into marriage not really intending to keep their vows. There are also many who are ignorant of what it really is all about … Too often there are many emotional issues that have not been properly addressed and they eventually begin to weigh the marriage down. Marriage has its mountaintops as well as valley experiences. It is important to know no matter how much you know about your fiancé there is so much more to learn. Marriage is a place where both spouses can grow as individuals as well as together! You want to make sure that you are willing to go through the valley with your spouse as well as share in the Joys & Celebrations before you are married!

Your marriage is or will be as strong as the foundation that you build it upon. God is the Creator of marriage. “But for Adam no suitable helper was found. So the LORD GOD cause the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he as sleeping, He took one of the man’s rib and closed up the place with flesh. Then the Lord mad a woman from the rib He had taken out of the man, and He brought her to the man.” Genesis 2. This is such a beautiful passage of Scripture. The man and woman was a precious gift from God to one another!

Adam no longer had to be alone without a companion. Listen closely to what he says: “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman.’ For she was taken out of man.” For this reason a man will leave his father and his mother and be united with his wife, and they shall become one flesh. The man and the woman where naked, and they felt no shame.” Genesis 2. This is also why it is so important to keep God and His principles as the center of your marriage!

If you are already married make it a point to rekindle the passion and dedication that was apparent when you first came together. If you have allowed time, things and people to allow you to drift apart renew your commitment to one another. You can’t change what has happened but you can build a better future right now. What if we are not on the same page? Then it is time to have a serious discussion and make some plans for your path forward! Life is precious and you can’t get time back. So you really do not want to spend the majority of the time being uncertain and unhappy! You cannot change your spouse but you can have an intervention and confront what has or has not been happening! Remember speak the TRUTH in Love!

If you have kept your commitment and your marriage is flourishing then help, support and mentor other couples along the way. Those who are married or desire to marry encourage them to keep their marriage vows they have made or will make to one another! Life often takes on many twists and turns and will at times present some adversity! Let them know some of the joys and sometimes sorrows of marriage. How together they can celebrate the mountaintop experiences of life and build an ongoing loving, growing, principled, faithful, respectful and honorable marriage! Yes there still be some rain and there will be some tears. But there is nothing like a good rain to make you enjoy the sunshine! With the rain comes much growth! A good marriage brings much contentment and fulfillment! So get busy! Showers of Blessings from above awaits you! This is why it is so very important to know that marriage truly is a covenant agreement!
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Food For Thought “Before” and “After” You Say I DO!

Food for thought “Before” and “After” you say I DO.

Kindle Edition $2.99

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Are We Ready For Marriage ?

December 29, 2009 by  
Filed under Marriage & Relationships

“being unequally yoked”. One common denominator that is essential for a successful relationship; God must be Lord of both lives! Light and darkness can not have true fellowship. How can a Godly woman expect an unbelieving husband to be subject to God. How can a Godly man expect an unbelieving wife to be subject to God as well. Submission is a humble compliant act. It means submitting to the authority of another. God is a God of order. The husband submits to God. The husband and wife in turn submit to one another. The goal of marriage is to experience the spiritual and physical oneness God has deemed attainable.

In marriage both partners must be willing to give up selfishness for the sake of the relationship, as well as forsaking all others. God does not want us to have a joyless experience. Jesus died so we might relish “the abundant life”, abundant means plentiful, overflowing. He wants our lives to overflow with the fruits of His spirit. They are: Love, Joy, Peace, Long-Suffering, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self-control. Galations 5:22-24 (NKJV). The scriptures says “Wives, submit to your own husbands as to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church: and He is the Savior of the body. Therefore just as the church is subject to Christ so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything. Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for it, that He might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the Word, that He might present it to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that it should be holy and without blemish. So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church.” Ephesians 5:22-29 (KJV) To walk in the spirit is to be controlled by the spirit. It is the infilling of the Spirit we must pray for over and over and over again. When a wife submits to her own husband as to the Lord the Lord’s order is established in the marital relationship. But remember the husband must be subject to the Lord. When we are walking in the Spirit this type of relationship is possible. God has provided us with a formula for a fulfilling marriage. We must learn to trust that he really knows what is best for us. Now, step out on faith.

We must ask ourselves are we ready for marriage? Are we prepared to relinquish our selfishness? Are we ready to put the other partner’s well being first? Are we willing to share? Better yet are we willing to remain faithful and to partake in the joys as well as long-suffering that life often offers? Are we truly ready to spend the remainder of our life with this person? If you can answer yes to these questions, it is quite possible you are ready?

In this 21st century more than 55% of marriages end in divorce. Divorce is taking too many casualties! It is important to take some time and really ponder if you really want to make a lifetime commitment! Divorce and infidelity are raging a battle against marriage! Don’t let your vows just be mere words!

Marriage is the oldest institution there is. God created it to be Beautiful and last for a lifetime! Think long and hard before you presumptuously commit to Marriage. Planning for a wedding is so very exciting! It should be a wonderful magnificent, memorable and breathtaking grand occasion whether its large or small! All too often it is the idea of all the exciting Showers, Parties, Celebrations and activities that many have come to enjoy rather the marriage itself! A committed marriage takes a lot of work, it does not just happen! Make sure that you have thought about the future as well. I have found more often than not the last thing a couple wants to hear while planning to marry is are you sure?

Marriage between a man and a woman is the ultimate commitment of Love! Because of the alarming number of marriages ending in divorce and resulting in infidelity, I wrote this quick easy read premarital guide that takes less than a half an hour to read! Look and listen to the news! I have heard too many couples say “I never thought about that?” If I only would have known! You do not want a life of heartache! First know you cannot change this person you want to marry! Ask you self; Do you want to wake up to this person every morning for the rest of your life? Are you willing to work through life’s challenges and do what is best for the marriage? Are you ready to close the door on all other sexual partners? Each marriage is totally different. But the same basic principles are true! Together you have the opportunity to build a unique relationship that mutually suits your temperaments! Think long and hard? Take some SERIOUS time and really think about if you are ready to say yes to a lifetime commitment! If you are I wish you a Loving, eventful, committed, lifelong, happy, God-centered marriage, “What God has joined together let not man put asunder.”

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What Does It Mean to “Love” ? Part 1

What does it mean to love someone? Does it mean you give them everything they want? Does it mean letting someone run over you? Does it mean you tell them what they want to hear? Does it mean you never make them angry? Does love ever end?

Webster defines love in this way; strong affection for another based on kinship ties.

Example: maternal love for a child. Attraction based on sexual desire. Admiration or benevolence. Warm attachment, enthusiasm, or devotion. A beloved person: Darling. Brotherly concern for others. To hold dear. To feel a lover’s passion, devotion, or tenderness. An unselfish concern of God for man.

The scriptures tell us that “God is Love.” Tell me can you really truly love someone and not know God? Or better yet to the degree you know God; does it help you love in a profound way? According to I Corinthians LOVE……is PATIENT………is KIND………does not ENVY……. does not BOAST…… Is not PROUD…..is not SELFISH. Keeps no record of wrong doings…….does not DELIGHT in EVIL……..but REJOICES in TRUTH. Always protects. Always TRUSTS. Always HOPES. Always PERSEVERES.

Does your definition of love encompass Biblical principles? Guess what? Well, whenever the above are not in operation it is not love. We all should seek to improve how we respond in love.

I have found that love is a term that many people use loosely. If you listen clearly they usually base love on doing or not doing something for them. Love is not giving someone what they want. Love is not letting people run over you. Love is not telling people what they want to hear. If you love them you will speak the truth in love. Just know when you truly love people they will get angry with you sometimes! Learn to be “angry and sin not!”


I am eternally grateful that the LORD has bestowed His Love upon our lives and our marriage. I can say we genuinely love one another as husband and wife. It is not something we take for granted. We both are able to stand firm as individuals in what and who we believe in. Together we have faithfully allowed the Lord Center Place within our marriage. We are thankful for His Holy Spirit His Comforter. There is never question as to His Divine intervention in bringing us together. This was confirmed by our late Pastor/mentor. He told us it was important to not let anything come between the “circle” of love. It has helped us to weather the storms of life as well as the plethora of mountaintop experiences. We enjoy, genuinely love, respect, trust and care for another.

I am most thankful for God given coping skills. There is a Joy and an unexplainable Peace that is present even in the midst of sickness, sorrow, contention or spiritual warfare. The HOLY SPIRIT is a SPIRITUAL COUNSELOR! GOD’S TRUTH is POWERFUL. It will not allow you to freely move in denial but rather seek truth. A lie will keep you in bondage. There is no place in truth for delusional illusions to persists. But an undoubtable constant awareness of GOD’S OMNIPRESENCE everywhere you are. I fully realize without the Lord I am nothing but walking breathing formed dust. Yet in Him I am confident.

It is important to readily strive to resolve conflict. It only serves to limit your own “Walking in the Spirit! Feelings need to be validated. Discipline needs to be embraced when responding or not responding. Confrontation exercised from the perspective; “this is how you feel” Be willing to “REPENT” whenever in error. Move forward allowing the Lord to build your character. Life is precious and you do not want to spend the majority of your marriage and your relationships in “much ado!” You get stronger in this as you practice it.

There are those who have lived with much turmoil. Rather than seek to resolve their inner turmoil they tend to continue to create it. Pray for Discernment!

Whenever you are dealing with someone who does not really understand love they will often misinterpret your intentions. Their perspective of you will modify. You are no longer the kind wonderful person that they thought you were. All of a sudden you will be perceived as being cold, uncaring, and selfish. They will accuse you of not really loving them when you don’t give them what they want. Don’t fret! God knows your heart. Stand fast. Don’t manipulate or don’t allow anyone to manipulate you. In the meantime pray for them. Begin to practice healthy boundaries with them.

There are many angry people who will chew you out at the drop of a hat. They have oodles of pent up unresolved anger. Cancer, high blood pressure, eating disorders, temper tantrums and depression are just a few results of stored anger. It’s okay for them to have a tantrum. it okay to do very little. But you are expected to appease them. Anger is natural. Encourage them to find healthy ways to express their anger. Suppressing anger is unhealthy. Just know it takes more control to not respond than to throw a fit. Did you know you can be angry and sin not?

By the way you must let go of some people you love. I am not talking about letting go like in divorce. Divorce occurs because two adults are not able to work through whatever problems they are experiencing. They are not able to keep the commitment they made to each other for whatever reason. Often this is because they really didn’t think things through first.

Many couples are unaware of the necessary tenacity for building an enduring marriage. There are also those who come to marriage to get rather than to give. They have been so hurt that they remain insulated from learning how to really love and keep the vows that they made. Sometimes living behind a wall of shame… (But that’s another column/sermonette). When I say letting go I mean putting them in hands of the Lord. Allow Him to intervene.

There are those who just enjoy a habitat of tension and confusion. They will often go the mile with a coworker or a friend and their spouse receives the leftovers. They tend to participate in just about everything at their place of worship yet their home life takes secondary place. There need for acceptance is the priority. This should not be. It is clear that they don’t perceive God’s Omnipresence.

Avoiding conflict is not healthy. Did you know you could break unhealthy cycles by employing better ways to resolve conflict? Allowing a cooling off period before discussing the problem may be helpful. Always seek direction from the Lord He will never lead you wrong. He will help you to humble yourself. Learn to walk in meekness. Which is power under disciplined control.

Sharing a one sided account of what has happened to your friends will not help your relationship. It may get you some momentary support. But it won’t help you to grow spiritually. Words spoken in a fit of anger can be very damaging. Taking responsibility for your actions is always a step in the right direction. Letting go and allowing them space to feel the consequences for their actions can be beneficial to their spiritual maturity.

The world is a very inconsistent place. God’s standards are not often respected nor appreciated by many. God must be the central focus of your life for true successful living as a believer. Life will present challenges. But with the help of the Lord; He can and will deliver you!The prophets pleaded over and over with God’s people to return to His principles. God wants to be first in your life. Remember after all you belong to Him? We have been grafted into His family. God has instructed us to; “Hear O Israel: the Lord our God is one Lord. And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thine soul, and with all thine might. And thou shalt teach them diligently unto they children and talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest……. (Deuteronomy 6) God loves us and is faithful. ALL HIS WORD IS TRUE.

Love will help you weather the storms of life. Love must be balanced. The term “unconditional love” is often used today. I often hear; “I can do without your kind of love.” Well your kind or my kind of love is not love at all. it is really more about how we are feeling in the moment. Remember, God sets the standard for love, for “God is Love” Unless we measure it by His standards it’s merely subjective opinion. For example; the more I don’t rock your boat you love me. Once you rock my boat I tell you to get out. Now all of a sudden you cry, “You don’t love me anymore.” As long as I let you rock my boat it’s thought of as love. WRONG! This is immaturity. How can something as important as Love be reduced to such insignificant terms. This is what I call “intoxicating affections.” It mimics love and doesn’t last.

Don’t get love confused with how you feel in the moment. You can not like what someone does and still love them. It is love that actually helps you to respond properly or not respond to them despite the way you feel. Remember God’s love rejoices in the truth! Although it can be painful shift through what someone says to you and see if there is any truth in it. Make an adjustment whenever necessary. This is how you shape your character. Beware of counterfeit love. When you have been truly loved you will know the difference.

There are only a few that find genuine love. But God really wants this for us all. It is never too late to seek GOD’S LOVE! This is true if you are married or single. “Be ye perfect because I AM Perfect” God really does wants us to become perfect in HIM. Which means to become complete in HIM who IS LOVE! No one is flawless but JESUS. This is why we all need HIM as SAVIOR & LORD! HE says; we ALL CAN BECOME PERFECT in HIM! Scriptures tells us that love covers a multitude of faults. This does not mean we ignore or condone sinful habits. Don’t be deceived. There are consequences for sin. This is why it is so very important to know His Word for yourself!

We are living in some interesting times when some of everything is happening all over the world. The Spiritual Warfare has heightened. The devil’s agenda is to reek extreme havoc upon the children of God as well as those in the world. He will use whoever he can. He knows that time is winding UP!

Now is a good time to seek the Lord above all else. In the Word, God says; “Is anyone of you in trouble! He should PRAY!” James 5 Humble yourself before the Lord. Be encouraged for GOD always has a way to HIM 24/7…

See Part 2


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MARRIAGE: Caring Enough To Listen=Communication (Part I)


When God created marriage he intended for it to be beautiful. It was designed for companionship. Marriage was not meant to seem like a sentence. It was not meant to be full of on going drudgery. Nor was it meant to neither suffocate, smother, nor repress each others unique individuality. It was made so the realization of “two becoming one flesh” could be realized. It was meant to help mature and grow a man/woman in a husband/wife relationship. To learn how to love, submit, commit, respect, and learn together what it means to work through and out of difficulties as well as enjoy great experiences within the confines of a committed relationship. Having healthy good communication is an important component within a good marriage. I want to encourage you to make it a priority to learn how to effectively communicate to one another. To know where one another are, to consider each others opinions, to be objective and express your self freely. It is important to make a conscious effort to treat your partner with respect. This does not mean that you have to agree on everything. This communicates I care enough to take the time to really get to know you. Having each others best interest at heart is also important. You should also be able to express your concerns if you feel they may be making a wrong decision. When expressing yourself say “I feel” or “I think” in expressing your point of view. You also want to learn to admit when you are in error. No one is right all the time. Part of being a good spouse is saying and doing at times what no one else will. You both have a responsibility to fulfill your commitment to one another as well as to the Lord.

Marriage was really designed as a partnership to help you become all that you were meant to be. Many couples often live as strangers. Within the boundaries of marriage you should grow to be able to spiritually, mentally, emotionally and yes physically openly learn to express your deepest inner thoughts in a healthy way. It is important to really get to know this person you have committed to. Ask yourself do you honor God in your relationship? Is submission a part of your marriage? It is important to include and seek the Lord’s direction and trust Him to teach you how to build a healthy relationship. It is never too late to start if you have not already. Does your marriage include intimacy? God our Creator is a God of order. You should never get to the place where you think you do not need to consult the Lord.

God made the heavens and the earth which were spoken into existence through His Word. The Word became flesh and “dwelt among us”. The Word as revealed in the scriptures tells us He is Jesus Christ. (See John 1) After creating the man from the dust of the earth God took the man He had created and placed him in the garden to take care of it. The one thing that Adam did not have was a companion “a suitable helper.” All the animals that God made already had partners. No doubt that Adam was brilliantly intelligent. Adam personally named all the animals. God caused Adam to go into a deep sleep and from within Adam He took one of His rib bones and made him a woman. She was taken from within Adam to be with Him as his God given partner. Someone to share his life with. Adam named her Eve. Initially they were open and not ashamed. They were even physically naked. It was not until after they had disobeyed God that they actually realized they were naked. (See the rest of the story in Genesis)

We are all naked before God. He knows us from the inside out. God is Omniscient meaning all knowing. There is absolutely nothing He does not know. Think about it for a moment, does not our Creator/ Manufacturer know our intended purpose? So why is it we do not consult Him whenever a problem, situation or issue arises? You listen to everyone else? God did not intend for us to look to the world for a marriage model. This is one of the major reasons why nearly 60% of marriages don’t succeed. I have been observing marriage relational dynamics for many years. No two marriages are alike. We are all very different. But God’s principles must be included if you really want your relationship to succeed.

One of the biggest problems in marriage or any other relationship really is poor communication. To communicate means to convey a thought, idea or relay information clearly. To transport information so that it is satisfactorily received or understood. Listening is crucial; it is a necessary component when one desires to effectively communicate. Communication is both verbal and nonverbal. Good healthy communication manifests when you are able to openly connect with who ever you are trying to communicate to.

Many problems and issues arise, when the time is not taken to communicate directly to each other this only further compacts the situation. If you have not taken the time to develop intimate communication with your spouse now is the time to get started. How do I do this? Stop hiding behind issues and past hurts. Get over them. Stop hanging on to the things that you cannot change. This does not mean that you forget. It means that you no longer hold whatever has happened against them. You instead choose to become wiser from whatever has transpired. When past issues become current issues what do you do? You must deal with them. Don’t allow too much time to go by. Confrontation in marriage is important. Otherwise the issue will become cancerous and nibble at the core of your relationship. The marital relationship was really designed to encourage transparency. This encourages and develops trust and intimacy. Intimacy will give you a responsible freedom because you are able to trust one another. It is really important to pray for as well as with one another. In many cases there have been such poor marriage role models that you simply do not know what to do. Many people who are married are lonely. This really does not have to be. Don’t settle for a superficial relationship that is on for public view. Think about it God is always present! Learn to live on a deeper level. Learn to become sensitive to one another’s needs. Your needs are important but not to the extent that you overlook the needs of your spouse. Some needs have exclusively been reserved to be met only within marriage. This does not mean that you can, nor are you responsible for the fulfillment of all of their needs.

Don’t just assume that your spouse knows something, or is happy or….. Many have just not learned the benefits of being open in marriage. (This is not at all the same as having an open marriage. In that case why marry at all?) It takes time to develop and build effective communication. How well do you really know this person you have committed to? Being open is the catalyst that ajars the door for developing effective communication. One must learn to listen as well, in order to effectively communicate. Don’t think short term, think long term. Get to know this person that you have committed to love, honor and …….. Or was that too just for the people? Don’t always mentally construct your response or rebuttal as you listen. Let it be your goal to attentively listen to whatever your spouse or anyone is trying to convey to you. If you are really interested in improving your relationship you must also learn how to listen. Taking the time to listen attentively to how your spouse feels validates that you care, value and are genuinely concerned about them. This helps them to open up. Remember, God intended for your spouse to be your “helpmeet”. Listening effectively is an art. The next time you talk to them really listen. Check yourself out and see how well you listen? If necessary repeat what they have said to confirm you heard correctly what they were trying to convey. Don’t always personalize everything they say. This will help you dispel erroneous and distorted conclusions or assumptions. Effective listening says you really want to hear what is being conveyed.

A good strong marriage or any other relationship for that matter consists of good communication. You do not have to agree with what is being conveyed. Sometimes just being a sounding board is necessary. You want to create an environment in which you do not have to feel like you are walking on egg shells. A major complaint in marriage is that my spouse does not understand me. Do you understand your spouse? Don’t make it a habit of always waiting until you are angry to fuel your ability to say how you feel. Plan ahead a time when you together can talk about whatever concerns you. Here is the opportunity to acquire some self-control skills. Think about it. Flying off the handle is really letting someone control you by remote. In this case your emotions only get the best of you and you impulsively say a lot of stuff that you can’t take back. You have actually stored it up, and bottled it up, to the point that it has fermented and become toxic. When this is the case it often results in flaring hot tempers which just usually yields more hurt feelings. If this is the case change is necessary in order to develop a healthier way to communicate.

The scriptures tell us “to be angry and sin not.” God does not tell us to do something that is not possible. Think about it now that you are calm and centered. Your feelings are important; they do need to be validated. Exercising self control strengthens your ability to not let your feelings control you. You should really want to create an environment where both of you can openly share how you feel. You also want to be able to freely express yourself even when you don’t agree about something. When you are always usually fueled by anger to express yourself it often leads to a breakdown or barrier in the relationship. Please don’t use that “nobody’s perfect” excuse to justify your ranting and ravings. Self control is a virtue. This does not mean that you stuff how you feel and just let any and everyone walk over you. It means that the majority of the time you choose to decide how you want to respond or not respond or simply just overlook. Rather than to just simply react. Don’t make everything an issue. Just observe what happens when and if you go off. Does it get the results you want? Do you really feel better? Or in fact have you just created another barrier? Sometimes no one wants to confront you and tell you if this is the way you are… Confrontation is a healthy part of communication. Constructive criticism really is a good thing. Getting the Lord involved always helps. He is always there. But you are given the free will to choose. You build self control as you exercise it in your life. This also helps to foster an environment in which you can build a healthier stronger marriage. Don’t ever take one another for granted. If you have; change it. You do not have to continue to live with dysfunction. The correct way to point the finger is in both directions. The good thing about God it’s never too late to change. Are you happy with the way that you communicate with your spouse? Is there room for improvement? Take some time and think about it? There is always room for improvement. Don’t let pride take the forefront in your relationship.

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MARRIAGE:Developing Intimacy

December 26, 2009 by  
Filed under Marriage & Relationships

MARRIAGE:Developing Intimacy

Intimacy is an essential component in developing a strong, robust, rewarding and satisfying marriage. Marriage should consist of an intimate, healthy, warm endearing closeness. This attractive closeness results in building a comfortable, formidable, deeper understanding and appreciation for each other. Fostering a marital environment that welcomes intimacy will yield, trust, security and transparency within your relationship. Often two people marry and just parallelly coexist, not really getting to know one another. To further develop your relationship it is important to get to know your spouse on a much deeper level. A good healthy marriage does not just happen it takes teamwork. Do you really want intimacy in your relationship? It is a necessary ingredient when one desires a deep, long lasting gratifying marital relationship.

Marriage was originally designed by God to be the ultimate, life sustaining Christian marital relationship where two; one man and woman agree to come together and grow as husband and wife. Each should have one another’s best interest at heart. To desire to journey through life with, as well as share their personal growth experiences along with a committed partner. This then becomes the ultimate foundational environment in which to build the family. Did you know today as many as 60% of marriages end in divorce? It is important that your marriage is or becomes a priority to both of you. Intimacy will foster a stronger union that encompasses developing the ability to build a healthier marital bond. It is never too late to start building intimacy. It is fundamentally essential that each spouse should consciously embrace and continuously seek God’s direction and enlist His principles within your relationship. “God’s Love endures forever.”

What does intimacy really mean? Webster Dictionary defines intimate as follows: “1 a: intrinsic, essential b: belonging to or characterizing one’s deepest nature 2: marked by very close association, contact, or familiarity 3 a: marked by a warm friendship developing through long association b: suggesting informal warmth or privacy

The Bible describes marriage as two becoming one flesh. This is really truly a fascinating concept that has become all too common. Take some time and ponder on this; we were made for God. “So God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.” Genesis 1. Today the world offers many variations as to what marriage can consists of? Remember God who is the Original Designer designed marriage to be a monogamous partnership between a man and a woman. Do you realize that you made a vow to love, walk together, grow together and go through both good and difficult life experiences with your spouse? Think about it your commitment was not only to your spouse but to God as well.

Man in general continues to quite often overlook the WORD of GOD in order to appease the desires of the flesh rather than seek the wisdom found in the Holy Scriptures. What was once sacred has become an optional alternative. The United States Supreme Court has even voted against the WORD of GOD in favor of same sex unions. This is a radical switch from the moral principles in which this country was founded upon. It is important to know God has not changed His principles for marriage.

“For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh. The man and his wife were both naked and they felt no shame.” Genesis 2. Although Adam was very close to God he still needed human companionship. Intimacy in marriage is vitally important. Intimacy consists of being transparent; being able to freely express and communicate however it is you are feeling, to openly disagree without fear. To learn, express and experience the depth and benefit of God’s true Love within the confines of marriage. Intimacy when embraced helps you to also become closer to God. The Hebrew word for “intimate friend” is partner. Intimacy actually brings an element of responsible emotional freedom to your relationship. You do not elect to major in the minor things of life. Mutual trust, compassion, concern and respect then naturally become healthy components of your relationship.

Within marriage you are able to learn and understand the concept value of submission, which really is meekness. Meekness is so often misunderstood. It in no way implies weakness! It is a Fruit of God’s Spirit. It simply means “power under control.” Self control is an important element of the Fruit of God’s Spirit. The insecure desire to always want to dictate and control someone or something is easily relinquished when you know that it is God who really is in control of all things anyway. You also can easily recognize manipulation. “The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.” Partaking in all the Fruit of His Spirit is quite beneficial. (See Galatians 5) Getting to know the Lord in an intimate personal way is so very important!

Why is it that all too often you are respectful to everyone else except your own spouse? Is your relationship often fueled by your residual unresolved emotions, impulsiveness, impatience and or hot tempers? When you usually relate in this mode to one another it will create a lot of tension between you. This also negatively impacts the overall quality of your relationship that can create a hostile unhealthy living environment. Relating in this manner, is it because you really do not believe that God is present when no one else is? Anger really grieves the Holy Spirit. “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs that it may benefit those who listen, And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, rage, and anger, brawling, and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as Christ forgave you. Be imitators of God, therefore as dearly beloved children and live a life of love.” Ephesians 4. The “TRUTH” really does set you free! How did you relate to each other before you married? It is important not to take one another for granted. “God’s Love endures forever.”

Since we live in the world that so strongly influences behavior, for many actually including God’s principles usually just becomes an afterthought. Common excuses “I’m human” well I hope so! Or “nobody’s perfect.” Did God not say “be ye perfect” because He is perfect, which really means mature not flawless. As God’s child we should be growing until He decides that it is time to meet Him face to face. Or repenting in stead of repeating. Pride usually takes the forefront. As a Christian your marriage should be different. God really is Omnipotent, He is right there! His Word is meant to be our life manual. When truly embraced fully and practiced, intimacy will alter how you interact and behave tremendously. You share mutual interests and your needs are met. You invite God in your circle. Of course you disagree at times but you learn to resolve most of your differences responsibly which further strengthens each of you as independent individuals, yet matures you as a couple.

Intimacy helps you to learn how to appreciate and to mutually respect one another, to entrust your inner self to your partner. This reinforces your union as a couple. You usually don’t impulsively just react when something or someone triggers you emotionally or “pushes your button”. You do not have to give them “a piece of your mind” all the time. I always say that I prefer to “keep my entire mind.” When put into practice you instead, learn to think first, and then responsively respond if and when necessary. The more you practice this principle you gain deeper insight and acquire calmness, inner peace and serenity. You do not just let others outwardly control you by remote. Be alert because you will be tested! “Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteousness that God desires…” James 1 The peace of God brings much inner contentment. If you read on you will find that there really are spiritual benefits in learning how to bridle or control your tongue! God is AWESOME! Each of us has an innate God given unique temperament. “It is our temperament that determines how well we react to people, places and things. In short, it is how people react with their environment and the world around them.” (Creation Therapy by Dr. Richard & Phyllis Arno)

Our Creator knows what we need. The malleable brain, your mind God has given you has over 12 billion cells, and over 400 miles of capillaries within 100 sq ft. In other words it can store a lot of “stuff”. You know the saying “practice makes perfect” what we really should say is “practice makes permanent.” Be careful what you ……. Creativity and learning by building upon what you already know builds dendrites or increases learning which builds your mind. Spiritually digesting and applying God’s Word transfers into a stronger solid spiritual foundation. Intimacy with God works absolute wonders! God’s Word is spiritual food for your mind. He says we can be “transformed by the renewing of our minds…” Romans 12. Change is possible. Do you really believe His Word? God really does have a better way! This is why it is so important to consult the Lord and apply His Word. Since He created us He really does know what is best for us. “With God all things are possible!

Remember God has designed marriage for each of you to have a “helpmeet if desired.” Developing intimacy has to be a desired goal; it is not an automatic process. Rather than just “dump” on one another you create an environment where you can learn healthier relational dynamics. Intimacy also helps to release inner anxiety, allows free expression, frees your mind, and allows room instead for each of you to build an inner strength which stabilizes your relationship. The two becoming one is a spiritual principle of intrinsic value.

Marriage is supposed to be something that is cherished. It must be attended, nurtured and cared for in order to create an environment in which you both are able to mutually grow together both spiritually and emotionally. Each marriage is different and as two different individuals you both together are able to determine what your priorities are in your own marital relationship. It is important to respect, support, encourage, chastise and urge one another to be all they can be in life in order to grow and fulfill whatever their God given purpose may be. God wants to be a part of our lives each and everyday. Sometimes this requires a shifting or reprioritizing of what you think or perceive to be important. Ultimately instead of trying to fit God into our lives we should design our lives to center around Him.

Quite often when one thinks of intimacy they think only on terms of being physical. Many couples have and are experiencing physical relationships without any intimacy. They physically engage regularly with one another, without really getting to genuinely know one another. This may fill an immediate physical desire. However in the long run it hinders your ability to bond and develop a depth and significant security within your marriage that comes along with intimacy. There instead resides an insecure, unstable shallowness to the relationship just waiting to become unhinged. Intimacy is possible but it takes time and a mutual commitment to move towards a deeper transparent relational level in your marriage. “God’s Love endures forever.”

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