Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Let's Get Going!

Hi Ladies!

I'd like to get this blog going again. God is doing some mighty things among His people--among women! If you happen to drop by here, please pray for me as I seek His direction in keeping up with this blog.

If you've never stopped by here, take a look and see if it's beneficial to you. Give me some input and let's see where this leads!


Thursday, April 26, 2007

How's Your Love Life?

Do you ever feel grouchy?

Are you laughing because I even had the nerve to write out that question as if somehow I might answer no?

Well, I do feel grouchy sometimes and I suppose we all do. Did you know that feeling grouchy and acting grouchy actually don't have to go hand in hand? I have been hung up on this verse for awhile now:

If anyone says, "I love God," yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen. And he has given us this command: Whoever loves God must also love his brother. (1 John 4:20-21)

How's your love life? I would not say that I hate anyone. In my heart, I don't believe that I do. Yet, sometimes I act in quite an unlovely manner. I get hurt easily by a misspoken word and I want to scowl and ignore the speaker. Or, I hold tightly to some material object when I know that someone else needs it more than I do. Sometimes I simply refuse to shine. (See Matthew 5:16 if you aren't sure what I mean there!)

As a child of God--a daughter of the King--how's your love life? Do those around you know that the source of all love--the being of all love--lives in you? Do you wives wake up joyfully in the presence of your husbands? Moms, how's the homelife with screaming kids these days? Single ladies, are your happier moments spent in front of the t.v. with a Lean Cuisine entree instead of hanging out with women and families of the faith?

"We are one in the Spirit, we are one in the Lord We are one in the Spirit, we are one in the Lord And we pray that all unity may one day be restored And they'll know we are Christians by our love, by our love They will know we are Christians by our love."

Are you struggling to improve your love life? What are you doing in your life to strengthen it? How are you helping others to know that "we are Christians?"

Share with us here...

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Carol Ann's Story

Hello ladies!

I have wanted to get some other people to share their stories here at "Good Things." We'll begin with my friend's testimony of meeting her spouse. Here's what God did in Carol Ann's life:

I had just served two years overseas on the mission field and returned home to attend seminary. I felt strongly that the Lord wanted me to study and be prepared before I did any more long term missions work overseas. During this time I was asking the Lord whether or not He wanted me to marry. I was single and desired a husband and family but I was not dating anyone and had no prospects. As I prayed through this, the Lord brought a peace and showed me that I needed to focus on Him and allow Him to work in my life to clean out some areas and refine me and that my focus should not be on searching out the perfect guy but in becoming the woman of God I needed to be.

Not too long after this surrender, the Lord allowed me to casually meet Tommy Kiker at a praise and worship service on the seminary campus in the Spring of 2002. Neither of us thought much about this meeting and we went our separate ways. We would see each other on campus but it was nothing more. The summer of 2002, Tommy was taking summer classes and had begun the PhD program. I had returned home and had come back to campus for a couple of days that summer when we met each other in the parking lot and had a great conversation about what the Lord had called us to do. I left the conversation thinking "He's such a great guy, too bad his heart is for the local church and not overseas" and I went home. For Tommy, it put a spark in his heart and he began to pray about pursuing me. By the time school started back in August, Tommy knew he was to pursue getting to know me. We began to talk more on campus and he asked me out on our first date at the end of August.

By September of that year Tommy had fasted and prayed and knew he was to marry me. I, on the other hand, was not so sure about it. I knew there was something special about him and I was drawn to him and had never been pursued by a man like he pursued me but I needed the Lord to confirm this relationship in my life. By December, after praying and asking the Lord to speak to me about this relationship, I was reading the Word of God and the Lord used a passage of Scripture to show me that Tommy was the one I was to marry. By January we were engaged and on July 12, 2003 we were married in a worshipful celebration.

The Lord used so many small things to show me that Tommy was the right person for me. The Lord used and is still using this relationship to refine me and mold me more into the image of Christ. The confirmations came from years of praying and asking the Lord to bring the right spiritual leader into my life, one that I could trust with the deepest parts of my heart. I had many lists in my head of what I desired my husband to be like and Tommy far exceeded them! My family and close friends were supportive of our relationship and most of all the Lord used His word and the Holy Spirit to confirm in my heart that this man was the one whom I could serve alongside and be his helpmate. When Tommy and I married I was 26 years old and he was 30. We were both virgins and the Lord used this and is still using this to bring glory to Himself! To Him be the GLORY!

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Loving Your Husband

Valentine's Day has come and gone! We have a single, fake rose in a vase on our table. When you push a button, it sounds off Fur Elise for us and the petals start to glow. My husband didn't give it to me, but he seems to like it. In fact, my husband didn't give me anything for Valentine's Day. I guess I should have sulked and walked around gloomily, but I didn't. How could I? Yesterday the Lord reminded me of a well known passage:

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. After all, no one ever hated his own body, but he feeds and cares for it, just as Christ does the church— for we are members of his body. "For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh." This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.
That passage (Ephesians 5:25-33) reminded me what a husband's true love for his wife should look like. First of all, my husband should lead me in truth. His ability to use the Word to help me become more Christlike demonstrates his love for me. He gives himself up, as did Christ, in order to cleanse me and make me blameless. How does he do that? He guides me and reminds me of my true love, Christ. In my case, one of the things my husband did for me yesterday was to point me to the fact that the most important act in life is to obey God. He modeled for me incredible forgiveness and gave up his own desires in order to spend time with me. He prayed for me.
Women, love your husbands. Respect your husbands. If you're not married yet, begin to pray that God will give you an attitude of love and respect towards your future spouse if God has marriage in store for you. I did not include the verses prior to this passage that talk about our responsibility as women, but basically it tells us to respect and love our husbands. I have found that when I allow my husband to lead me and I submit to his loving guidance, he respects me. In turn, I find it easier to continue loving and respecting him. Do I always do it correctly? No. When my husband modeled incredible forgiveness for me yesterday it was because he had to forgive me. I pouted and I grumbled about something I don't even remember now, but he forgave me. He put me before his wounded feelings and loved me. How can I not love him in return?

Do you find yourself in a difficult marriage? Are you an independent single who feels that submission and respect are for Christian women of the past? My sisters, God's word remains God's word for the ages. It never changes and it never misleads us. If you find yourself in a situation that makes you think that loving your husband (present or future) is something you cannot do with submission and respect, I urge you to seek God's word. Pray that God will lead you and that He will help you to fall in love with His word. Pray that you will love God more. I have found that the more I keep my eyes on the cross, the easier it becomes to love my husband. I have also found that when it gets difficult, it's often my own shortcomings that irritate me and urge in me an inward "me" focus. Loving others becomes rather difficult when I look at me and not towards Jesus!
As I end this today, I will say a prayer for anyone who might stumble across this message. Wherever you stand--loving strongly or weakly--only the Great Lover of our Souls can truly fuel your ability to love. Look at Him today and let Him teach you to love.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Out of Touch

Hello, my friends!

Have you ever felt out of touch? Perhaps your communication with a dear friend waned. Maybe you left a loved home and found yourself in a new community. I do believe that all of us go through moments of disconnectedness--moments of insecurity and uncertaint. Sadly, often those moments tend to lead us slowly down a path away from our Creator, rather than into His comforting arms. I know. I have lived it, too.

I seemed to have disappeared from this blog. Actually, it seems that I have disconnected with the world. Thankfully, past experiences of allowing myself to retreat from God have taught me that in these moments of change I must cling to Him, because He is the only constant in my life.

I have returned to blogging. I'd like to get this blog going again. More input, more ideas, more real life testimonies of godly women.

Since we "walked through" some singleness issues (at times times leaping), the next few posts will simply share some real life stories. Some will be filled with love, while others will echo lament. All, I hope, will encourage each of us to seek God's face.

Let's get un-disconnected together!

PS--I have been reading Choosing God's Best by Dr. Don Raunikar lately. I bought it when I attended seminary and never read it. It's mainly written for singles, but it's rather insightful for any woman--or man. Check it out!

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

From a Wise Woman

No, I haven't met her personally, but I did listen to her speak at seminary once and I have enjoyed her books. I'd like to share a bit from Nancy Leigh DeMoss to sum up the months behind and move on to a new topic. This comes from her book, Lies Women Believe and the Truth that Sets Them Free, mentioned in my links to the right.

Here's some wisdom from Nancy Leigh DeMoss concerning singleness:

*The Truth is that happiness is not found in (or out of) marriage; it is not found in any human relationship. True joy can only be found through Christ.

*The Truth is that God has promised to give us everything we need, and if He knows a husband would make it possible for us to bring greater glory to Him, then He will provide a husband.

*The Truth is that contentment is not found in having everything we think we want but in choosing to be satisfied with what God has already provided.

The Truth is that those who insist on having their way often end up in unnecessary heartache, while those who wait on the Lord always get His best.

I hope this has been of encouragement for you as you wait on the Lord to give you His best!

If you have suggestions for other topics you'd like to share or that you'd like to receive another point of view about, leave a comment so we can get it going!

Monday, November 13, 2006

The Final Lies

9. If I don't find him soon, I will have to sacrifice some of my deepest convictions about marriage in order to find him.

10. I need to flirt and go out with more men--that way I'll surely find the one God has planned for me!

Ok, it took me a long time to get through the list of lies. I'm doing these two together because they go together.

Do you believe that you should marry a Christian? What are your beliefs on divorce and remarriage? What about children? Those are a very few of the questions you should ask yourself before marrying someone. And, once you have a solid answer, why would you change it just to have a wedding ring? See, your convictions will help you to be sure that the man you are about to say "I do" to will help you to grow in your walk as a Christian. An example in my life is my conviction on divorce and remarriage. After much study and consideration, I came to believe that God absolutely abhors divorce, and that if one does divorce--although not the preferred option--remarriage is not an option. Again, that is my view. Not all Christians agree, and this is not a post on divorce and remarriage. But, I knew that I would not marry someone who had been divorced. I am glad that I don't have to deal with all of the issues that come along with that. I would not have married a non-Christian. Period. You see, if you abandon your convictions in order to get married, you'll most likely only put them on hold for awhile. Later, after some time being married, they'll start to nag you...they'll resurface. You'll either struggle with feelings of guilt or you'll suddenly expect your husband to change to fit those convictions. But, if you put aside your convictions to get married, the consequences are a result of your choices. Don't forget that!

*Note--I'm talking about theological, Biblical convicitons--not the "I want him to have brown hair" or "But, dinner is always at 5pm!" stuff!

Lie number 10--Don't flirt. One--it's really not becoming. I know all of the hip women's magazines encourage it, but since when do daughters of the King take their advice from the hip women's magazines? (They now tell high school seniors how to end Prom Night in bed with their date...really...I've seen those magazines!)

Why not flirt?

One: In a way, you're giving a piece of yourself--your heart, your gaze, your emotions--to someone who very well may not end up being your husband. If he's not your husband, does he deserve any part of you? (A preacher at our latest youth gathering put it this way, "Nobody has the right to touch the daughter of the King except the person the King has approved.")

Two: What if the one God has planned for you isn't the one you think he is, but he's present when you're fliriting? He might be turned off by it, and he might think, "God, you must be kidding!"

Three: Think about your future daughter. Think about how you want her to behave around men--around godly, solid, Christian men. Act like that.

Four: Many godly, solid, single Christian men are turned off by flirtatious women. Read Proverbs and look for all of the advice given to avoid that type of woman!

Five: Finally, if you are trusting God with your love life--HONESTLY trusting Him, you don't need to flirt. He'll provide your husband in His moment and in His way.

My dear sister, live free! God has set you free to love Him and to adore Him and to enjoy your relationship with Him! Love Him...obey Him...and be the Woman of God that He has designed you to be. Seek first HIS kingdom and His righteousness, and all other things will be added.

I'll be praying for you.