Monday, July 20, 2015

You can't have one without the other... Part 1..

Saw a saying the other day. "A husband can love his wife best when he loves God first." Or I could turn it around and say "A wife can love her husband best when she loves God first." I could just say enough said.

The rate of failing marriages these days is breaking my heart. The divorce rate alone is at 50% and I am sure it is climbing. The rate of the wondering eye when a marriage is not fulfilling for the husband or wife is staggering. There is no communication and there is no effort to resolve the break or disconnect which equals in disastrous results. The rate of marriage where God is not the center is even more staggering. These are just a couple of examples of marriage break downs.

I started listing these break downs out based on my experience, and so I will be doing several blogs as I don't want this one to be long. I speak from experience as you all know. If you don't know my journey I encourage you to go back to the beginning of this blog and read my journey. You can click right HERE. God placed this on my heart this past Sunday.

Warning, this is the truth, nothing but the truth. If you cannot stand to hear the truth, then read on. If you can stand to hear the truth, read on. My point is, there are those out there who are simply not ready to take responsibility for the vows they made on their wedding day. Rather they choose to break them and take the easy out. The easy out isn't so easy.

The first one I would like to talk about is going without God.

My story started when I let the enemy put its nose where it didn't belong. One day on my way to work, I heard a sermon on the radio about giving everything to God. Well... I thought I had. I was angry and at this point nothing in my eyes was working out right. The prayers that I was praying were not being answered in MY timing. I simply wasn't seeing any improvement in my marriage. I wasn't seeing any improvement in the other area's of my life either. I failed to claim any responsibility in the conflict that was my marriage or my life. So I told God I was done with him and I would do things my way from here on out. Thus beginning my decent to the bottom.

So my saying would be this... "A husband or wife cannot live their marriage life if they don't have a grounded faith and love for Christ." Trials are going to come. Husbands and wives we are going to be tested. But if we are not grounded in Christ first, we will fail the test with miserable results. For a marriage to work, both husband and wife, must submit to God first and to each other second.

Here is the fix. If you find that you are struggling spiritually or struggling to understand what God is or isn't doing in your marriage. Seek God and pray, pray more and then pray some more. Dig in the word and dig some more. It is ALL right there. Listen for God to speak to you. Ask that God would speak to you in a way that only you can hear or understand. Seek Godly counsel from an experienced counselor. Seek guidance from your pastoral staff. IF you know of a couple who has been down this road seek them out too!! God wants to heal you marriage.

Part 2 next week. One of two of the break downs that all but destroyed me destroyed me.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

A number significant to you...

Today as I am reminded of those who have gone before me.. I am thankful for the heritage that was left for me. I think about when we get married, then some of us become parents... What if a person handed you a number at the moment of your first married kiss or when your first child is born? Your look at the number and turn around only to find that person no where in sight. Precisely that number had two digits. At first you don't know what that number means... On either one of these days, the "I do" or the first time you see your child you don't really think of the significance of that number handed to you. You fold up that number, tuck it a way in your coat pocket and live life.

Fast forward some time, years perhaps... Your kids are older. It is a cold day and you go outside to spend time with you wife and kids. You have put on that same coat that you have had for years. You reach in the pocket to find a folded up piece of paper. You open to see what it is, there is that number that was given to you by a stranger who seemed to just disappear. You briefly stop and think about it and you fold it back up put into the pocket keeping it as there is no where to throw it away.

Fast forward a few more years. Your kids are grown, your marriage has had the typical challenges that all do, maybe more. You have a doctors appointment, you put on the same coat which you have had for years. The doctors appointment reveals news of your health that shows your days may not be long. You go right into treatments only to find nothing is working. Your time here on earth is significant now. It means something, and while you still can, you want to check off the things on the bucket list while you still have quality of life.

You are getting ready for an event that wasn't on your bucket list, but your family has planned for you. You put on the coat, reach into the pocket to find the piece of paper you never got rid of. This time the number is significant from the day you received it. It means something... As you begin to do the math, you realize that there isn't much time left. As you begin to scan the years of your life, memories come flooding back. As those memories come, you begin to think how you lived your life, the mistakes made, the times that were great and times that were not so great. You look at the storms and the times of peace. You suddenly realize that God was the person who handed you that number years back. You also realize that God was in all things. You take a moment to thank him for all his grace and goodness to you.

I wonder how does this story end in your mind? We all know that God is not going to hand us a number. But what we do know is that God numbered our days. It says in Psalm 90:12 - "So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom." Have you used your days wisely? Have you used your days to serve God, serve your kids, and serve your spouse? In the storms when God was in it with you, did you depend on him to see you through? Did you act wisely in those times? Did you honor your husband or wife? Did you raise your kids according to what God asked of you?

Friends, I don't want to know what my number is. I want to live my life with all of it struggles, the good, the bad, and the ugly honoring God wisely all the way through. When the storms come, I will cling to my savior knowing he is always in that storm with me. I long to hear the words when I walk into heaven some day... Well done good and faithful servant.

I end the story...

You set the number aside as you realize your days were God's days. Your timing was not your timing, but God's timing. As you are surrounded by your family, you start to see a glimpse here and there of heaven. Maybe God is showing you the loved ones that have gone before you. You close your eyes one last time, one last early breath... As those on earth hand you off to heaven, you see your Lord and Savior and here the words well done my good and faithful servant. Your legacy that you left behind will surpass any number because it was a legacy of Christ.