Keeper of His Home

by Chelsea McCafferty

The Importance of a Vow

Some couples choose to use more traditional vows, while a popular choice these days is to write one’s own vows. Unfortunately many couples of either preference seem to miss the point altogether because rarely do they even understand what a “vow” is and its importance. What is a “vow”? To whom are we making our “vows”? What happens if we break a “vow”? These are questions that should be answered and understood before young couples arrive at the chapel.

According to the Random House Dictionary, a “vow” is a “solemn promise, pledge or personal commitment.” It can also be defined as a “dedication”, usually made in earnest or with great passion. In the Bible, vows were a spiritual matter and a contract that was binding according to God’s law. Most vows were made directly to God as a promise to behave in a certain way or achieve specified goals.

An early example of a vow is found in Genesis 28, during the famous “Jacob’s Ladder” account in scripture. In Genesis 28:20-22, it says:

“And Jacob vowed a vow, saying, ‘If God will be with me, and will keep me in this way that I go, and will give me bread to eat, and raiment to put on, so that I come again to my father’s house in peace; then shall the LORD be my God: and this stone, which I have set for a pillar, shall be God’s house: and of all that thou shalt give me I will surely give the tenth unto thee.’”

In this case, Jacob is making a vow that is conditional. He is vowing to serve, honor and obey Jehovah God as long has God takes care of his needs and guides his steps. The great thing about this conditional vow is that it hinges upon God doing what God is going to do without fail because it’s His character. God is going to take care of Jacob, just like He is going to provide for all of His children. He does it because He has promised to do it in His Word. So Jacob vows conditionally, but really it has an unconditional outcome because we know God will not fail to be who He is. God’s promises endure forever. In Him there is no shadow of turning, amen? God never breaks His promises. The question is, will we? Hold onto that question in your heart for a while.

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I Take Thee

“I take thee…”

The first words of most traditional wedding vows contain three small but powerful words, “I take thee…”. They may seem unimportant and be brushed over, but these three words are the start to one of the most important commitments people make in this lifetime. Following these words is a list of ways in which a person commits her life to the mate of her choice. So these three tiny words are actual of monumental importance.

When we look at our beloved and say, “I take thee…” what are we really saying? Well, the Word of God uses the word “take” often to refer to a man “taking” a wife.

““The LORD God of heaven, who took me from my father’s house and from the land of my family, and who spoke to me and swore to me, saying, ‘To your descendantsfn I give this land,’ He will send His angel before you, and you shall take a wife for my son from there.” Genesis 24:7

The word “take” in Hebrew can be translated to: to take, take in the hand, to carry along, take in marriage, receive, accept, select, and to choose. When you say those words to the person whom you are about to marry, you are basically saying “I choose you.” “I select you.” “I receive you.” “I accept you.” “I’ll carry you along with me.” “I take you.”

When we say those words, we are making a commitment to choose none other. We are committing to receive and accept that one individual for the rest of our natural lives on earth. This is an exclusive action. It means consequently that I will reject the attentions from any other person. I will never give to anyone else what I am giving to you. I take the gift of your heart and will seal it up in mine for as long as God gives us breath. I take thee…

Have you forgotten your vow to take your beloved? Remember today those precious words that you spoke however long ago it was. Bring to remembrance the commitment that you made to take your beloved and none other. May the Lord bless your marriage as you stand upon your vows.

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Won Without the Word

“Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives; While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear.” 1 Peter 3:1-2

This verse says it all. What precious words of wisdom! Wives, be in submission to your own husbands. If they do not obey the word, they may be won over without the word by the chaste conversations of their wives. Now this is an interesting verse indeed and one that is sometimes looked at in the wrong way. It says “if any obey not the word.” The “word” is the Greek word “logos” which can mean just a portion of speech, but in most cases refers to the holy Word of God, or the precepts given to man by God. It is also the same word that is used as another name for Jesus Christ in John 1 when it says, “the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.” So, the scripture is describing a husband who is not obeying God’s Word and certainly not obeying Jesus Christ.

Now look at the second part of that sentence. It says he may “without the word be won.” Many people look at this passage and think it is saying the husband may be won without his wife saying anything, meaning without her nagging or instruction and so forth. Interestingly this is also the word “logos” and notice it says “THE word” not “A word”. Therefore according to context it makes sense that the scripture is saying the husband may be won over without the Word of God being constantly presented to him, simply by the conversation of his wife. Conversation doesn’t just mean speech either. It is the Greek word “anastrophē” which means, “manner of life, conduct, and behavior.” Husbands can be won over by the example their wives show in their own lives. What manner of behavior or conduct is that? Chaste and reverent behavior is what does the trick. A godly wife can win her husband to the Lord by her pure, good and honorable behavior and by the reverence she shows her husband as she submits to God’s plan for her life. Now that is incredible.

See the picture here ladies? If you husband is in sin, it is not fruitful for you to be preaching at him day and night, usurping spiritual authority over him. Rather, as you honor him, according to God’s Word, and live your life in a way that pleases the Lord, your husband may be won over. This is true also if your husband is a godly man in most respects but has an area of struggle with sin. Do not nag him or criticize him. Pray for him and continue to be the wife God wants you to be, remembering that your submission and respect unto your husband is not based on his love for you or his submission to God. If you refuse to submit it is God whom you are sinning against. If your husband refuses to go with you to church, do not lose heart. As he observes God’s love and truth in your life, he will see the Word being lived out in you. Ask the Lord to use you in this way to minister to your husband.

If your husband asks you to sin, respectfully refuse, explaining why you cannot comply. Pray for him and continue to walk in submission and reverence in all other areas. If your husband is in sin himself, share your concerns with him once in respect and love, if he will listen, and then leave it to the Lord. Pray fervently and be a good example in your own daily conduct. Do not treat him with contempt or look down at him. You should honor him because God says to, not because you feel he has or has not earned it. Just remember that God never wants us to sin under any circumstances, so this is the one area where you must not submit to any other authority.

Your husband is your leader. He is the one whom God desires you to follow. This is a crucial point. God desires you to follow and submit to your husband. By serving your man, you are serving your God. Where he goes, you should follow. His dreams must be your dreams. He is your primary ministry. You are his help-meet, by his side and close to his heart. One flesh blessed by the Lord of all Creation. Being your husband’s helper is so beautiful. Embrace it, ladies. Discover the peace and satisfaction that comes with knowing that you are in the center of God’s will for you, and experience the joys of having a heaven-blessed marriage. Meditate on this passage from the book of Ruth. In it, Ruth is speaking to her mother-in-law, but this is a lovely commitment that a wife can also make to her own husband.

“But Ruth said: ‘Entreat me not to leave you, or to turn back from following after you. For wherever you go, I will go. And wherever you lodge, I will lodge. Your people shall be my people, and your God, my God. Where you die, I will die, and there will I be buried. The LORD do so to me, and more also, if anything but death parts you and me.’” Ruth 1:16-17

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Do Christians Focus Too Much on Marriage?

I have heard more than a couple times people criticizing some Christians and churches for focusing too much on the God-given and God-designed union of marriage. I’ve heard people make statements like, “oh it’s all about marriage at that church” or “they elevate marriage too much.” I wanted to address the issue of why marriage is an important topic to discuss, but first I’d like to talk about why there are people who seem to be offended by too much marriage talk.

People like myself, who feel called to the ministry of marriage, may sometimes struggle with being understanding of a person who seems almost anti-marriage. The truth in most cases is those who have a hard time with a church or a group focusing a lot on marriage  are usually people who are single, widowed or in a lonely, struggling marriage. It’s important that instead of getting frustrated, we understand that these ladies are going through pain. Perhaps hearing about marriage all of the time and seeing married couples always clinging to each other causes them to long even more for that relationship. Perhaps it makes them mourn for a lost love. Even worse, it reminds them that they feel trapped in an unloving marriage. Sometimes there is a problem with the church not meeting the needs of ALL the members. The singles and widows need focus too. They need ministry and opportunities to serve too.

I think I understand their perspective more so being a woman who has struggled with infertility. While children are such a blessing, and I was always happy for a sister in the Lord who had a baby, there was also such hurt and longing in me that it was sometimes difficult to be around pregnant women or people with babies. It was hard to see the children being such a focus when I couldn’t have any. I’m so grateful now for my precious little girl –  a gift straight from God! I do, however, see how a single person or widow would feel neglected and hurt by a church family that focused all its attention on marriage.

That being said, while I feel we should not neglect or ignore anyone, there is an important place for marriage. Here are some reasons why marriage is an extremely important issue to focus on:

1. Marriage is Gift from God: God focuses a lot on relationships in the Bible, and He speaks a great deal on the topic of marriage. He created marriage in the book of Genesis and He make it sacred. He made it to be a lifelong covenant, and in Malachi 2 we see that God hates the act of divorcing. When Jesus is asked about divorce in Matthew 19:8, He said that divorce was allowed because of the hardening of hearts, but from the beginning it was not so. God never wanted divorce. That’s why marriage vows typically say “til death do we part”, and yet to some 41-44% of couples who marry today, those are just empty words.

2. Christian marriage produces godly offspring: In talking about marriage Malachi said, “But did He not make them one, Having a remnant of the Spirit? And why one? He seeks godly offspring.” Malachi 2:15a. Christian marriage is important to the youth of this generation. According to the US Census Bureau, grown children of happily married parents are about 14% less likely to divorce their own spouse. Of all children, close to half will witness the end of their parents’ marriage and, of those kids, half of them will witness the end of a parent’s second marriage as well. According to an article by the Huffington post, children of divorce are seven times more likely to suffer from depression. Also, of all the adolescents in substance rehabilitation clinics, some 75% are from single-parent homes. Similar statistics are true for prison. Marriage is important because a godly marriage is good for children.

3. Marriage is a reflection of our relationship with God: Ephesians 5 and other parts of scripture show us that earthly marriage is a reflection of the relationship of Christ and the church. We are the bride and He is the Bridegroom. “Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls filled with the seven last plagues came to me and talked with me, saying, “Come, I will show you the bride, the Lamb’s wife.” Revelation 21:9

4. A godly marriage is a requirement for church leadership, elders/pastors and deacons. (Titus 1:6, 1 Tim 3:2, 1 Tim 3:12). A man whose home in not in order should not be serving in church leadership until he puts things right. That means a wife who is not living her life according to God’s statutes can disqualify her husband from leadership by her conduct. Does this mean that a man has to be married to serve? We don’t know if the emphasis of the verses in on the “one” wife or “husband”. In other words, is it important that he’s married, or just that he only has one as opposed to many? Well, God said that it wasn’t good for man to be alone and he needed a helper. On the other hand, Paul said that some are called to singleness. So, the answer is: I don’t know. What we do know for certain is that if a man is married, and he wants to serve in ministry, he should have his home in order.

5. Sex: That’s right! “Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband.” 1 Corinthians 7:2 According to God’s Word, sexual intimacy is only good and right inside the union of marriage. Today more and more couples choose to live together and put off getting married. They are living in sexual sin because marriage has lost its place of importance to much of the younger generation. Today people are shocked when two virgins in their twenties get married. It’s rare for people to hold onto their purity. So it’s important to focus on marriage and to teach the young people that sex is only okay inside marriage.

There are many more reasons that marriage is an important topic, but this is quite a long blog already. While we need to be careful not to exclude singles and our widows, we also need to focus even more on the union of marriage. We know that it’s important to God, so it should be important to us too.

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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!
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Part 6 – Love is not Rude, The Loving Homekeeper Series

“Love does not behave rudely…” 1 Corinthians 13:5

The Greek word for “behaving rudely” can also be translated to “behave itself unbecomingly” and isn’t it interesting that a person who puts on an air of rudeness often loses beauty in our estimation? I can see a beautiful woman walking across the room and think, “wow she is a stunning woman.” Then when I go to say hello she snubs me and looks at me like I just stepped off of an alien spacecraft. Suddenly this beauty has lost her shine and appeal. To think I might have looked up to her for her outward appearance, but now I wouldn’t even want to be in her presence.

That’s what rude behavior does to us ladies. It strips us of our beauty, shine and warmth and makes us into nasty creatures. That should be the last thing we want. I know what I want most is for my husband and daughter to look at me as if I am the most wonderful, special and loving person in the world. I don’t want them to see me as rude and obnoxious. I don’t want my Christian sisters and friends to think of me a as a rude person they have to put up with, but rather a woman who exhibits the love of Christ. We should desire to be beautiful, but not as the world sees. We should seek to exhibit the kind of beauty that God’s finds spectacular—a woman who fears the Lord and loves her family.

As a homekeeper, it is so very easy to slip into rude behavior behind closed doors. Sure, we can clean up nicely when we are out with our family at church or in town. We smile. We bridle our tongues and hold back the urge to make rude remarks. We are constrained by the desire to “look good” and that keeps us from rude behavior when eyes are upon us. The question is, what happens when the spectators are gone? Are we as kind, gently and compassionate to our own family?

We keepers of the home often get somewhat run-down by hectic schedules, long chore lists and the ever-present need to be on top of everything. Sometimes with this exhaustion comes a sort of laziness with how we treat our husband and kids at home. We are more comfortable to unwind and say whatever we like. We don’t feel the need to impress them so we struggle with nagging, unedifying speech and impatience. We need to remember that behaving in a way that is unbecoming is just as bad when its towards our family members in private. When I flippantly shout at my husband to get his own dinner and then start chowing down before he has time to join me, that’s rude. When I ignore my daughter’s questions (even when I’m not actively engaged in other activities or conversations) that’s rude. When I nag and whine and complain, that is very unbecoming.

Lord, help us to be women who are beautiful by Your standard and not women who behave rudely. Love is not rude. Love is compassionate, caring, edifying, humble and kind. We are learning so much about what love is and what it isn’t. I find it so very moving how it all can apply directly and in a special way for homekeepers.

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Part 5 – Love is not Puffed Up, The Loving Homekeeper Series

“Love is not puffed up.” 1 Corinthians 13:4

Love is not puffed up with pride. It does not inflate itself or cause itself to swell in its own estimation. Love, in fact, is cloaked in humility. Sometimes the only way we can show love to our families and friends is through acts of humility. Yet I find this is an area of great struggle for myself and many other ladies.

When my husband and I first got married, we really knew very little about one another and our daily habits. There was a lot of compromising together and getting used to one another in that first couple of years. It was not always easy. Funny how the little things can add up and create conflict. One of those little things that caused problems on several occasions was clothing. My husband and I have very different tastes in clothing. He is much more easy going about what he would wear out into public, where I am more careful about wanting to wear something that best suits me.

Most of the time my husband picks out clothes that are perfectly fine and look good, but every once in a while there would be a bad one. It would always go the same way. Dear husband would come out of the room wearing something that I felt didn’t match, or was too tight or just wasn’t right for the occasion. I would say something to the effect of, “you’re not wearing that out are you?” His countenance would immediately change to one of frustration as he replied, “I’m a grown man. I can pick out my own clothes, thank you!”

Now whether or not I was right about the fashion choice, it was clear that this was going to be an ongoing conflict. My husband didn’t like being mothered and second-guessed by me, and I was worried that he would go out looking bad. We had a problem. After much prayer about this issue that kept popping up, the Lord spoke to my heart and basically asked me this, “What’s more important—that your he looks good or that their is peace between you?”

I realized what God wanted me to do. I had to let go of my pride. I had to stop worrying about what other people thought about my husband’s attire and instead choose to be okay with it. Love chooses humility. Love does not demand to be the center of attention. It builds up others, not self.

As keepers of the home, we have daily opportunities to love selflessly and in humility. When we find ourselves being too proud, or puffed up in our own minds, we need to remember our Savior Jesus who made Himself of no reputation but took on the form of a servant and died a sinner’s death for us. We need to see Him washing the feet of the disciples. As we serve, may our hearts mimic His and our love be His love flowing out of us.

Love is not puffed up. It’s not proud but perfect in humility. It is not inflated, but rather seeks to edify others and bless them. That’s the love every homekeeper must keep at the forefront of a long day’s work.

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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.

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When Your Husband is in Sin

No doubt there are going to be times when your husband is in sin. We all sin and we are married to sinners. The Word says if we claim to have no sin we make ourselves liars, which is a sin! So dear, imperfect wife, your imperfect husband will most assuredly sin from time to time. If he is not a Christian, then he will be often in sin and without remorse or conviction, and you need to know how to deal with that.

First of all, it is important that you never attempt to take over the spiritual leadership of the household, even if your husband is not walking right with the Lord. He is still head of the house, and you must still be in submission. If he is in sin, and is open to it, share with him respectfully and lovingly where he may be in sin. Then leave the matter alone and commit it to the Lord in prayer. Do not nag him or continue to push the subject. Pray fervently and allow God to do His work in your husband’s heart. Remember, if your husband is not saved he will not have the conviction of the Holy Spirit, therefore attacking individual sins is only dealing with the symptoms of the real illness. He needs to have a relationship with Jesus Christ, so make that the top of your prayer list for however long it takes. And have hope sister! God hears the prayers of a wife who is in obedience.

“Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives; While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear.” 1 Peter 3:1-2

This verse says it all. What precious words of wisdom! Wives, be in submission to your own husbands. If they do not obey the word, they may be won over without the word by the chaste conversations of their wives. Now this is an interesting verse indeed and one that is sometimes looked at in the wrong way. It says “if any obey not the word.” The “word” is the Greek word “logos” which can mean just a portion of speech, but in most cases refers to the holy Word of God, or the precepts given to man by God. It is also the same word that is used as another name for Jesus Christ in John 1 when it says, “the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.” So, the scripture is describing a husband who is not obeying God’s Word and certainly not obeying Jesus Christ.

Now look at the second part of that sentence. It says he may “without the word be won.” Many people look at this passage and think it is saying the husband may be won without his wife saying anything, meaning without her nagging or instruction and so forth. Interestingly this is also the word “logos” and notice it says “THE word” not “A word”. Therefore according to context it makes sense that the scripture is saying the husband may be won over without the Word of God being constantly presented to him, simply by the conversation of his wife. Conversation doesn’t just mean speech either. It is the Greek word “anastrophē” which means, “manner of life, conduct, and behavior.” Husbands can be won over by the example their wives show in their own lives. What manner of behavior or conduct is that? Chaste and reverent behavior is what does the trick. A godly wife can win her husband to the Lord by her pure, good and honorable behavior and by the reverence she shows her husband as she submits to God’s plan for her life. Now that is incredible.

See the picture here ladies? If you husband is in sin, it is not fruitful for you to be preaching at him day and night, usurping spiritual authority over him. Rather, as you honor him, according to God’s Word, and live your life in a way that pleases the Lord, your husband may be won over. This is true also if your husband is a godly man in most respects but has an area of struggle with sin. Do not nag him or criticize him. Pray for him and continue to be the wife God wants you to be, remembering that your submission and respect unto your husband is not based on his love for you or his submission to God. If you refuse to submit it is God whom you are sinning against. If your husband refuses to go with you to church, do not lose heart. As he observes God’s love and truth in your life, he will see the Word being lived out in you. Ask the Lord to use you in this way to minister to your husband.

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Serve the Lord with Gladness

“Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing.” Psalm 100:2

God is so good and His mercy endures forever. Women, we are creatures of emotion. We all know it to be true, especially during times of hormonal imbalance, right? I am the worst when it comes to P.M.S. and letting my emotions get the better of me. We can be so sensitive and our moods can fluctuate so rapidly that our husbands sometimes don’t even have the ability to keep up. I know that it is hard to dwell in joy.

We have all the struggles that anyone else does. We have had problems with finances, infertility, health and much more. I will be perfectly honest with you; sometimes it is not easy for me to be joyful. My emotions take over and I’m swept over by waves of sadness and grief. I have a need to cry sometimes or to go for a long, hot bath and just listen to my Savior comfort me. Life is not easy and I want to make it clear that there are times for tears. There will be a time for mourning and weeping. There will be times when it is right to grieve.

We will lose loved ones, experience sickness, be hurt by unbelievers and sometimes fellow believers—it is right and appropriate to feel sad and express sadness when there is loss, pain or suffering. What we must remember, however, is that the Lord’s joy and mercies are new every morning. There will be a time for tears, but there will also be a time for the tears to give way to smiles. There will be a time for mourning, but there will also be a time for the mourning to turn to dancing. There will be a time for grief, but there will be a time when the grief is covered with joy. As Christians, we know these trials are but for a short time and then we will see the glory of the Lord. In Revelations we see that God will wipe away every tear from our eyes and we will spend eternity praising Him for He is so worthy.

Return to joy, dear ones, and do not let yourself dwell in sadness, but in the peace of the Lord. Cry when you need to, but live in joy. Do not let sadness and discontent rule you, but let the Lord fill you with the precious hope He has for you. Do not be chained down by discontent, but allow the Lord God of Israel to be your fullness and your portion. Do not fret and worry, but rejoice knowing in full assurance that the God of all Creation will meet your needs and bless you exceedingly with His love and mercy. There is much to rejoice about, so make a choice today that you will live out His joy in your heart, blessing your family, your husband, and your Maker.

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