Keeper of His Home

by Chelsea McCafferty

No More Strength Left

“My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever.” – Psalm 73:26
Have you ever had one of those days? Do you know what I mean by “those days”? It’s as if every time you turn around something is falling apart. Every time you get a phone call it seems to be more bad news. Your body is tired and your heart becomes weary. You feel like you have nothing left to give, and yet you’ve got others counting on you and depending on you to meet their needs. Have you had one of those days? Maybe you’re having one today. Maybe it’s been one of those months or one of those years. Maybe it feels like it never stops.
We all have days like that. Some of us have more than others. Some suffer for long periods of time with various trials and tribulations. Life on earth can be hard and cruel. Sin ravages our land and the sin of others can bring us great suffering. Our own sin can cause long-lasting consequences that persist even after the blood of Jesus brings us complete redemption. On days like these, when it seems that everything is coming up against us, we have to choose to look to Jesus. The truth is, everything IS coming up against us but, if God is for us, whom shall we fear?
There will be days that we have no more strength left. Our heart fails and our flesh is weak and weary. At those moments, when we just feel like we can’t take another step, we must remember that God is the strength of our hearts and our portion forever. God is our strength. He is our endurance. When we fall upon Him, He is the One that lifts us up and carries us through to the end. He renews our strength.
“Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding. He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall: But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” Isaiah 40:28-31
God doesn’t faint or grow weary. He never will. He is our strength. You know, I think the truth is we would never fully understand that concept if we never get to that point of utter exhaustion. If we never grew weary, would we ever experience the supernatural strength of God filling us up and renewing us? If we never fell apart, would we recognize how much we need Him?
If you’re having one of those days, beloved, fear not. Your God is mighty and His strength is everlasting. Fall into His arms and let Him carry you. Be weak and let Him be strong for you. It’s like that Savage Garden song says, “If you need to fall apart, I can mend a broken heart. If you need to crash then crash and burn, you’re not alone.” You’re not alone. God is your strength, your portion, the mender of your heart and your loving Father. So if you have no more strength left, fall on Jesus.
Advertisements
5 Comments »

My Encounter with a False Prophet

“But the prophet who prophesies peace will be recognized as one truly sent by the Lord only if his prediction comes true” (Jer. 28:9).

“When all this comes true – and it surely will – then they will know that a prophet has been among them.” (Ezek. 33:33).

“The Lord was with Samuel as he grew up, and he let none of his words fall to the ground. And all Israel from Dan to Beersheba recognized that Samuel was attested as a prophet of the Lord” (1 Sam 3:19).

Straying from my usual theme of being a keeper of the home, I had an experience recently that I wanted to share with you about. As many of you know, I struggle with some health issues and had made an appointment to go to Santa Barbara to the beloved Sansum Clinic to get some help from the experts there. I was to go on September 3rd. I live about 3 hours drive from the coast, which is important to the plot of this story.

So a few weeks before my appointment, I received a message from a friend who was concerned. She warned that she had been reading about people having prophecies that California would be struck with a tsunami and megaquake that would bring mass destruction and change the coastline. I’ve heard of these prophecies before and have always thought they may occur at some point anyways. Of course, we live so far from the coast that I never give it much thought. Then my friend said something that caused me to stop and pray. She said this one man had prophesied that the tsunami would hit the west coast on September 3rd…..eh? Being that she had no idea I was going to the coast on that very day, I felt a chill run down my spine. So there would be a tsunami the same day I happened to be going to the coast? Oh boy!

While I felt like disregarding the issue, I couldn’t get it out of my mind. I wrote to my pastor about it and he gave some great insights from God’s Word and advised me to contact this “prophet” and to inquire as to whether this word was from God. I got in contact with him (his name is Isaac Castro). I emailed him and commented on the Youtube video in which he clearly says that he is bringing the Word of God and that a tsunami will hit the West Coast on September 3rd as a judgement from God. He didn’t answer me for weeks. When he did, he was kind and answered well. The problem is, he was wrong. Today is September 4th and there was no tsunami.

Now I’m not writing this to embarrass the man or hurt him, but rather to point out a few very important truths from God’s Word regarding prophecy and prophets. The truth is there will be  a lot of false prophets popping up here and there. God’s Word says that if a prophet says a word that does not come to pass he is a false prophet. He is not receiving the message from God. We are not to take heed to his words. It’s important as believers we do not believe everything we hear or read. I’m sure this man had great intentions. He seemed genuine. I believe that he believed what he was saying, but he was wrong. He was in error. He did not test the spirits that brought him that message.

1. Test every spirit. Do not believe everything you hear. Test every spirit against the Word of God. 1 John 4:1 “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.”

2. Warning the People. When God judged a nation with a catastrophic event, He sent prophets to warn the people (Jonah, Nahum, Obadiah, Isaiah). These prophets went to warn the people of the danger and need for repentance. I asked this man if he would go to the coast and warn people. He said he would only do it through the internet and fliers. With millions of people along the coastline, and less than 700 people watching his video (most of whom probably don’t even live on the west coast), this man wasn’t fulfilling the calling of a prophet. This is a red flag. Look what God said to Ezekiel in Ezekiel 33:6 “But if the watchman see the sword come, and blow not the trumpet, and the people be not warned; if the sword come, and take any person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at the watchman’s hand.”

3. Thus Says the Lord. A prophet is speaking the word of the Lord. A true prophecy from God that is supposed to be shared needs to be declared the word of God. If the person is sharing a message as prophecy, but is not willing to proclaim it as the word of the Lord, then we need not take heed. It is important that a person not claim to be speaking the word of God if he is not absolutely certain of it. When asked, this man did claim to be speaking God’s very word.  Ezekiel 22:28 “And her prophets have smeared whitewash for them, seeing false visions and divining lies for them, saying, ‘Thus says the LordGod,’ when the Lord has not spoken.” Jeremiah 23:21 ““I did not send the prophets, yet they ran; I did not speak to them, yet they prophesied.”

4. Prophecy Does Not Come to Pass. If a prophecy does not come to pass, it is not from the God of the Bible. A prophet who has one inaccurate prophecy is false and cannot be trusted. “If what a prophet proclaims in the name of the Lord does not take place or come true, that is a message the Lord has not spoken. That prophet has spoken presumptuously. Do not be afraid of him” (Deut. 18:22).

So the tsunami did not come. This man is a false prophet, whether by purpose or by ignorance. Praying for him and praying that we would all be wise as to what we speak, hear and believe. Above all, we must stand upon the Bible and what we know to be true. We must test every spirit. We must be wise and not easily-led in various directions. If nothing else, I did learn a lot about prophecy according to God’s Word through this little adventure. While I still think there may be disaster on the west coast at some point in the future, I put my trust in the Lord. We know we are in the end times. We need to be urgent to share the gospel whether a big wave is coming or not.

1 Comment »

Why Marriage? Why You?

With the release of my book, “Keeper of His Home”, and the upcoming speaking engagements, I have been asked by several people to explain why I write and speak mostly about marriage. People have asked me why I feel called to this issue, especially in that I’ve only been married 8 years myself. Why is it a topic that is so important to me?

In the Introduction of my book I share my testimony which sheds a little bit of light on that subject. I come from a broken home of divorce myself. My mother was a Christian and my father was not. My father was an adulterer (frequently) and verbally, emotionally and sometimes physically abusive to my mother. Childhood was hard. I was sixteen when the divorce went through and my father married his mistress, raising her kids. I didn’t have a relationship with him for 8 years, and even then it was labored and awkward. I can happily share that, by the power of the Holy Spirit, I was able to forgive him in the end and tell him I loved him the day he passed away. Praise the Lord!

Why marriage? Well, I don’t honestly know. All I can say is that the Lord has put the burden of marriage heavily upon my heart. I look around and see marriages ending, marriages in trouble and families being torn apart. I see statistics that send a shiver down my spine. I see the faces of children being caught in the middle and it breaks my heart. God had a plan when He created marriage, and this wasn’t it folks. This wasn’t it. His Word gives us the answer of how to have His plan for marriage actuated in our lives.

Why me? Again, I don’t really know. To be honest, I’m not the most perfect candidate. If there were any misgivings, let me lay them on the table now. I don’t have a perfect marriage. In fact, I’d say my marriage has been a hard one from the start. My husband and I honestly barely knew each other when we got married and have both changed so much since then (for the good I think). If not for God’s Word, I don’t think we would have made it, but this message changed my heart. While we don’t have a perfect marriage, we have a happy home. We have peace, joy and Jesus! We have a beautiful daughter whom we love dearly. She has parents who love each other through God’s love and respect and honor one another according to His Word. Do we make mistakes? YES! We make mistakes but God’s grace is sufficient and each year we get better.

Proverbs 5:18-19

“May your fountain be blessed, and may you rejoice in the wife of your youth.  A loving doe, a graceful deer– may her breasts satisfy you always, may you ever be captivated by her love.”
 
God has called me to the ministry of marriage and I accept that calling, knowing I’m inadequate, ill-equipped and unqualified. Thank the Lord He uses the weak things of this world to confound the strong! If your women’s ministry would like me to come and share at one of your events, feel free to contact me. God bless you!
4 Comments »

Preparing for Persecution

Interesting, but when I was in the process of getting my book published, the only thing I thought about was that I had to get it out and into the hands of my sisters in the Lord. I didn’t even have a thought about how Christian women would receive the message of the book itself. When it was released for purchase, and people began buying the book, I suddenly realized that some who read it would not be entirely pleased with its content. After all, God’s plan for marriage and the roles of a wife are not very widely accepted these days.

For the first time, I began to feel a sense of apprehension and nervousness. These feelings never entered my heart as I penned the words. Yet now I’m keenly aware that I most likely will receive some criticism, opposition and even outrage at some of the points in my book. That wives should take care of their homes, submit to their own husbands, and show honor even when its undeserved…these are not popular concepts. Yet we are not to please the world but to please our Father in Heaven. He created marriage and gave us the blueprints for how to do it right, and His plans are without flaw. They are not based on circumstance or only applicable for ideal situations. God’s Word is true and His promises are solid as stone.

So as I release this book (which can be purchased in the Bookstore here in paperback or Kindle versions), I am aware that I may be persecuted for sharing this message, but I am prepared to face it knowing that God is my refuge and my strength. I will stand upon His Word without fear knowing that He is for me, therefore who can be against me? I have been faithful to His Word and have shared the message He put on my heart. I’m ready to face attacks of the enemy and the world, because my almighty God is greater than the world. I will put my trust in Him. Amen? So bring it on…

7 Comments »

Part 9 – Love Thinks No Evil, The Loving Homekeeper Series

“….Love thinks no evil.” 1 Corinthians 13:5

What does it mean to think evil? In this world we temporarily dwell in we are surrounded by evil. It’s on the television, in the newspapers and magazines, in the streets—everywhere. It’s so easy for us to get desensitized to what is evil because we see a world full of people accepting and even glorying in evil. So when God says that love doesn’t think evil, what does He mean and how can it be accomplished?

Let’s get back to the language. The Greek word for “think” is “logizomai“, and it can be translated to: “reckon, count, compute, calculate, to take into account, to number among, to consider, weigh, meditate on, to determine, purpose, to decide.” So this word is more about how we weigh something up in our minds. What do I determine about this person or issue? What is their substance? How have I judged or calculated their motives to be? It is actually less about what the subject actually is and more about how we’ve labeled it.

Now the word for “evil” is the Greek word “kakos” and means “of a bad nature, of a mode of thinking, feeling and acting base, wrong, wicked, troublesome, injurious, pernicious, destructive, and baneful.”

What’s fascinating about taking this phrase apart is that by understanding the text we get a better idea about the point God is making here. You see it’s not about whether or not a person is evil or has a bad nature. It’s not about whether or not they truly are being troublesome or wicked or if they secretly despise you. It’s not really about them at all. When God said “love thinks no evil”, it’s about me. It’s about how I view people and how I love them. It’s about not being cynical and looking for the worst in people. It’s about not labeling someone as evil, wicked, troublesome or destructive, especially when I don’t know that it’s true.

I think about a juror in a court room. They are presented the facts and are told to make a judgement based on those facts determining whether or not the defendant is guilty. They may be looking at a pile of evidence but it all comes down to how concrete they determine that evidence to be. God is reminding us here that we aren’t the judge and we aren’t in a courtroom. We are supposed to be loving people, not determining how wicked they are or labeling them as evil. Now, there may be evil in their lives. They may be guilty of all of the bad things you suspect. They may be out to get you or they may really be giving you dirty looks behind your back. That’s not the point. The point is how are you going to think on that person. You can choose to think no evil by taking those thoughts captive. You can choose to love people, whether or not they love you. If we really want to be effective in leading others to Christ, we need to show them this kind of love.

I think about a time when a young man came to our old church for a while. The church was something of a legalistic church, and the people weren’t very graceful to say the least. Regardless, I remember this young man entered the church and he was wearing torn up, un-matching clothes, dog chains and a bright green mohawk. He had several tattoos and piercings. The young man attended the church for a while off and on. I’ll never forget when one of the ladies from the church (in her sunday best looking prim and proper) walked up the young man and said she had to confess to him that she had secretly been judging him by the way he looked ever since he started attending.

For one thing, I couldn’t believe this woman’s discernment that the best way to deal with HER inward sin was to confess it to the person who didn’t even know how much she had been despising him. She unburdened herself at his expense when she could have simply confessed and repented to the Lord and spared him the embarrassment. Still, this woman’s heart was to think evil. She had judged him. She had labeled him. She had determined he was wicked and evil. And even when she did confess of this sin, her unloving attitude had driven the young man away from God and not to Him. How sad. Let us not be this kind of person. Let us love people and think no evil.

God says we can take every thought captive that goes against His Word. He also says in Philippians 4 that we are to think on what is true and of good report. We aren’t to go passing judgements or labeling or determining the heart of another person. We aren’t called to do that. We are called to love. Love.

Leave a comment »

Part 7 – Love Does not Seek Its Own, The Loving Homekeeper Series

“…love does not seek its own..” 1 Corinthians 13:5

What does it mean to “seek ones own” in terms of love? It’s an interesting phrase and also interesting that most of the various translations have it the same way. Some add that love does not “seek its own things” and another shortens it to being “self-seeking”. The NLT says love “does not demand its own way”. When it comes down to it, what the Lord is basically saying is that His kind of love—the real kind—is not selfish, self-seeking, self-focused and self-pleasing. Self, self, self!

It’s not difficult at all to get caught up in self in the world we live in today. Every magazine, therapist and politician we see and hear proclaim that we need to take care of ourselves first and foremost. I cringe to think of a Christian sister going to the world for counsel because she will be bombarded with messages of self-love, self-focus and self-gratification. She is told that she needs to care for herself first before looking to meet anyone else’s needs. She will be told to search within herself for the answers instead of searching out the Word of God and His heart. She is told to neglect her family in order to seek out her own way in life. She is told if she doesn’t like her husband she should leave and follow her dreams. Who cares about her husband and children? They can take care of themselves, right?

I think that most of the reasons people have for getting divorced today boils down to this very important point—this point which has been lost in a social sea of self-seeking corruption. It all comes down to seeking one’s own instead of others. Love does not seek its own. If more people understood this there would be so fewer divorces and strained marriages. Love does not seek its own! Its so simple and yet so corrupted by the wickedness of this world!

Sisters, do not be deceived. God has not called us to be self-seekers but self-sacrificers! God has not called us to be self-gratifiers but selfless servants. God has not called us to be self-focused but to be self-abandoners so that we may truly be lovers of the hearts of our husbands, children, family and friends. We were not created to be selfish beings. We don’t need more self-esteem, we need more God-esteem. We need to take our eyes off of ourselves and put them directly on Jesus Christ.

I have known many women who have suffered with depression and anxiety. I myself battled with it at times in my life and I can tell you from experience that those times when I have been most depressed and most anxious were the same times that I was taking my eyes off of the Lord and putting them on my self. Self-focus causes sin. It causes pride, bitterness, self-love, arrogance, depression, anxiety, self-harm—the truth is it is toxic to the heart of a believer. We need to stop looking at the mirror and start looking to the sky and to our Creator for fulfillment, happiness, joy and love. He is the source. There is nothing good within us and everything good in Him.

Love does not seek its own. Love does not seek itself or demand its own way. Love is giving. Love is selfless. Love is self-sacrificing and humble. Oh Lord, let us keep our eyes fixed firmly on You and let us abandon ourselves so that we can be perfected in Your love!

Leave a comment »

Teach Thy Children His Ways

The most important memory we can keep for our family is the memory of our testimony of God’s power in our lives in the in the lives of our husbands and children. We read in Psalms that we are to remember His wonderful works. When our children are old enough to understand, we want to tell them all about what God has done in our lives. How did God capture our hearts? How did He change our lives? How has He continued to work in our lives ever since? How has God directed our marriages and our methods of raising our kids? We want to remind our children constantly how much He loves them and how He wants to know them.

 “And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates.” Deuteronomy 6:6-9

“These words…shall be in thine heart,” oh woman of God. “Thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children.” God goes on to say that they will be bound to our hands, placed between our eyes and written on the very walls and posts of our homes. Why? So we never forget! God is commanding us to remember His Word and all of His wonderful works so that we can teach them to our children. If we love our children, we will remember God’s Word and we will remember to remind them of His Word as often as we can so that they may grow to love Him and walk in His ways. We must never forget what God has done and who our Lord Jesus Christ is. Praise the Lord!

With God’s Words anointing your home, and your heart skillfully keeping the memories of the family safe inside, your husband and children will be blessed by you and will rise up to call you blessed. They will see you as a treasure, far more valuable that rubies or gold. You hold their lives in your heart—every scar, every victory, every fear and sweet dream. Treasure these memories. Your unique female heart was made to hold them safe and sound.

Leave a comment »

My Calling Towards Home Education

“And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates.” Deuteronomy 6:6-9

I always attended public school growing up, as did my husband in Scotland. The school I went to from 4th to 8th grade was a great school in a small town and I felt that I got a good education there. I went on to a public high school and then straight to a four-year university to be trained up in music education. My ultimate goal was to become a high school choir director and to teach in public school myself. You can imagine the surprise when I felt the Lord turning my heart towards homeschooling just after I married my husband.

I was living in Scotland with my hubby when I started to think about home education. We lived in a small town where I would encounter the kids walking to their schools each morning. They all wore uniforms, some of which included mini-skirts that I found to be appalling. The words I would often hear from their mouths were even more disheartening, and ones I wouldn’t want to mention here for fear of offending my readers. I wondered how I would worry if one day I were sending my own children off to these schools. Would these be the kids they befriended and learned from? Would they be mocked when their mother wouldn’t allow the mini-wear? What about the material being taught?

I recall talking to a young lady from our church. She attended a Catholic school, which is quite common over there. She said that one of her nun teachers had instructed the class during “religion” class that Jesus really didn’t do a miracle and physically multiple the loaves and fish to feed the five-thousand plus. She said, “The real miracle was that He got the people to share and that’s what the story was trying to tell.” Yikes! A nun telling kids in public Catholic school that Jesus’ miracles were not to be taken literally?

This all got me thinking and praying. I talked to my pastor’s wife, who had been home schooled herself growing up, and is one of the finest women I know. We talked about the things our children would be force-fed in public school. They would be taught the theory of evolution as if it were fact and dismiss any suggestion of creation or a Creator. They would be taught the old-age of the earth as fact without mention of other possibilities or holes in the theories. They would be given sex-education classes where current issues of birth control, homosexuality, masturbation, sexual identity and abortion would be explained by secular teachers instead of parents. These, and many more issues, kept running through my mind and heart. After much prayer, research and Holy Spirit tugging I found myself sold on the concept of home education and my husband confirmed that he too was on board.

I’m not sharing this because I think everyone needs to homeschool. Perhaps homeschooling isn’t for everyone. Not all women can stay at home to teach. Many have to work outside the home to make ends meet. Others feel that they aren’t equipped with the patience to homeschool and that’s okay. I’m not sharing my story as a means to judge or put down anyone who has chosen to use public education. I know many awesome Christian parents who have gone this route and who have great kids. I am simply sharing my calling towards home education, how God put it on my heart and why I believe it’s what He wants me personally to do.

Luke 6:40A student is not above his teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like his teacher.”

1 Corinthians 15:33 “Do not be misled: ‘Bad company corrupts good character.'”

Proverbs 13:20 “He who walks with the wise grows wise, but the companion of fools suffers harm.”

Romans 12:2 “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”

Proverbs 22:6 “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”

These are some of the verses that encourage me in my decision to homeschool. Jesus said in Luke that a student becomes like the teacher. While I know many wonderful teachers out there and respect them thoroughly, I also know that I cannot ensure every teacher my daughter would sit under would be a Christian, and that is important to me. I want my daughter to be influenced by people under the influence of the Holy Spirit. Along the same lines I want to know that the children my daughter forms close friendships with are also being trained up in the Lord. I want to know they are being taught purity, good character and morality. While we are called to be lights to this world, I believe it is wise to wait until my daughter is older and firmly founded in the Word herself before exposing her to the world to shine.

We as parents as supposed to train up our children. We are also supposed to prioritize what are the most important things for them to learn. While my daughter will be fully educated in math, science, history, geography, literature, etc., a big part of her studies will also be in the Bible. I love that we can start each day with Bible and prayer time. She will learn about evolution and creation. She will learn about history…all the way back to the Garden of Eden. She will learn about how God made her female and what that means from her mother. She will also learn how to cook (hopefully better than me!) and clean and take care of a home. I get excited just thinking about it!

I have faced all of the stereotypes and stigmas attached to homeschoolers by those who have questioned our choice and all I can say is that I have found them to be in error. I have taught a homeschooling choir for over three years and have worked with over 45 homeschooling families. Getting to know these kids I have found them to be nothing at all as they are portrayed by those who don’t agree with homeschooling. They are delightful, bright, respectful, social and sweet kids who just shine. I adore them and their parents! In my time I have only met one family that was a little different, but the rest have been wonderful! Statistics also show that home educated children often graduate early from high school and do very well in college.

Again, I want to make it clear that I am not saying my way is the only way. I know there are great schools out there and wonderful teachers. I know that good, involved parents can and do keep up with what their kids are being taught and continue to train the kids after school hours in the things of the Lord. I am not judging others for going with public school. I am simply sharing my personal calling and why my husband and I have felt guided by the Lord into homeschooling our little ones. It is a challenge and a blessing, and I can’t wait to see what the future will hold as we continue down this path. God bless!

4 Comments »

Turn the Wheel!

“Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.” Ephesians 5:22-24

Many godly wives are far too quick and eager to take up the reins of control when it seems their husbands are leading the household off course. They either take control by force, acting against their husband’s will or they manipulate and nag their husband until he changes his mind for fear of losing it! We are all guilty of doing this at some point and to some degree in our marriages, but these tactics, although usually effective, are not at all in line with what God says about the roles of husband and wife in marriage. God is clear that wives are to be in submission to their own husbands. The Word also tells us that husbands are head over the household. That means wives are not meant to run the show, wear the pants or be the boss. Our husbands are supposed to be in the driver’s seats and we are in the passenger seats. So hand over the keys ladies and trust the Lord.

I have an excellent example of taking the reins too early in my own marriage. My husband is from Scotland and we moved to California in 2007. Unfortunately he never learned how to drive in the U.K. so he got his learning permit and set about to get his California Drivers License. To get him ready for the test I had to teach him how to drive. Big mistake. Big! One day he was practicing driving around a parking lot and I suddenly felt that he wasn’t pulling over quite as much as he should to avoid hitting the curb. Without hesitation I reached right across him and grabbed the wheel, causing a little bit of a struggle, as he was pulling the wheel the other direction at the same time. I was quite surprised to find my husband was less than happy with my reaction and with me taking the wheel without giving him a chance to correct it himself.

The truth is he was right to be upset. We were in no danger. I was merely being impatient and not giving him the benefit of the doubt that he could work it out himself. By me taking the wheel I was telling him that I didn’t trust him or think that he could do it on his own. I doubted his capability. In my mind I was simply correcting a problem. As wives we need to be discerning and trust God enough to let our husbands steer the car. We know that God is in control. We know that He works all things together for the good for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose. We know that we all learn from mistakes. Take my advice ladies; don’t take the reins out of your husbands’ hands when you think he’s going in the wrong direction. Allow him to lead and trust the Lord. You will be blessed because of it and your marriage will have peace instead of struggle.

When we look at scripture, we see a long list of women who manipulated their husbands in order to get their own way. Let’s start with Eve in the Garden of Eden, feeding her husband bad fruit (Genesis 3). Adam should have been leading, but Eve took the reins and led them both into temptation and the first sin. Should Adam have refused to follow her into sin? The answer is clearly yes, which is why both were disciplined by the Lord. However, would Adam have ever considered eating the fruit if not for his wife’s encouragement? Perhaps not. How about Sarah and Abraham (Genesis 16)? Sarah’s deep desire to give an heir to her husband prompted her to convince her husband to commit adultery with her own handmaid, Hagar, and to produce the son of the flesh, Ishmael. Once the son of promise, Isaac, came along, there was tremendous friction and subsequent pain. We certainly cannot forget Delilah (Judges 16) and how she manipulated Samson, causing him to lose his hair, his strength, his connection with the Holy Spirit (for a time) and eventually his life.

These are just a few examples of women manipulating their men, but manipulation may not always be leading our husbands into sin. Sometimes it is simply leading them in a different direction than they feel God has called them. A man and woman get married and the woman wants to have a child right away, while the man feels they should wait for a few years so that they can spend time together as a married couple first. The woman seduces her husband and conveniently forgets to take her birth control pills. Whoops! Now certainly there is no sin when it comes to sex in marriage, nor is having children a sin, but the refusal of the wife to follow her husband and her manipulation is far from fitting behavior for a daughter of the King. Perhaps you want to move to the beach but your husband feels called to buy a home in the mountains. Circling the ads for lovely beach homes for sale and leaving them sitting on his favorite chair when he comes home is not the way to do it. Neither is crying and complaining all day and night until you get your way. These are tactics of manipulation and are not in line with God’s Word.

Leave a comment »

I am Tired and Heavy-Laden

“‘Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.'” Matthew 11:28-30

Are you tired and heavy-laden? Burdened down by the weight of trials and tribulations in your homes, community, church and family? If you are feeling heavy-laden, you are not alone. We live in a world full of burdens indeed and so often we feel that we have too much to bear on our shoulders, yet we know God only gives us what we can handle. In the scripture above the word for “labor” is to “grow weary, tired and exhausted from toiling; to labor with wearisome effort.” The word “heavy-laden” is one that can also be translated as “loaded down by a burden”. We get a picture of a person who is struggling to carry on under the gross weight of a burden too heavy for any person to carry alone. Yes, too heavy to bear alone. That’s why Jesus finished so mercifully with an invitation to take upon ourselves His yoke.

This yoke has a double meaning. A yoke was a bondage that was placed around the necks of cattle to keep them working together as a team, pulling a cart or farming equipment. The yoke kept the cattle moving the same direction. Two cattle pulling a heavy load together evenly distributes the weight so that the burden is lighter. Jesus offers his yoke to us. His burden is light because He is a mighty, powerful God! We are never alone in our burdens when Jesus is carrying them with us! We can trust Him!

The yoke is also a reference to the difference between the Law and God’s new covenant. The Law put a heavy burden upon the people that they could not bear or fulfill. It was a bondage of chains that brought condemnation and defeat. Then the grace of God came and melted those chains with the blood of a pure and spotless Lamb. His yoke is easy and light because all we have to do to receive salvation is give Him our hearts and follow. We are not bound by the heavy Law but free in Christ’s redeeming sacrifice. We still strive to please Him in our lives, but we do that because of our love for Him and gratitude of changed hearts.

Tonight as I write this I am heavy-laden and burdened. Burdens are pressing down and all around I see people suffering. I see my own failures and repent of my sins. I am burdened for the lost and dying—for those who don’t know the love of Christ. I am tired of the struggle, the trials and the tears. Yet, as I read His Word and dwell on His goodness, my strength is renewed. My heart is refreshed and my burdens lighten. I feel Him place His yoke on me and bid me to come His way. I hear Him comfort me with Words so sweet and gentle and I know He will make goodness of all of the badness in this world. He will make beauty from ashes.

So I thank the Lord that this heavy-laden woman is not left to carry the burden alone. When I can’t walk anymore He will carry me. When I don’t have the Words to speak, the Spirit will intercede for me. When I am troubled by the trials, He will comfort my broken heart. Praising Jesus tonight, for His yoke is easy!

“Have you not known? Have you not heard? The everlasting God, the LORD, The Creator of the ends of the earth, Neither faints nor is weary. His understanding is unsearchable. He gives power to the weak, And to those who have no might He increases strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, And the young men shall utterly fall, but those who wait on the LORD Shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles. They shall run and not be weary. They shall walk and not faint.” Isaiah 40:28-31

2 Comments »

Faithfully Fighting Lyme

Fighting Lyme Disease through the power of the living God

Faithful Lyme Warrior

Fighting Lyme Disease by the power of the Living God

Color Me Lyme

Blatherings of a Lymie - My Lyme Disease Healing Journey

easone13

A fine WordPress.com site

Kristeen Nicole Gillooly

Sharing the love of God through music. My voice, His message. Join the conversation.

Life Is A Beautiful Mess

A glimpse into the mess of life and the beauty of grace.

A Brunette's Reflection

Unprofessional Relationship Councilor, WannaBe World Traveler, Trial and Error Cook, and Almost Famous Whatchamacallit