Saturday, September 20, 2014

Become a Sheep Mother, Not a Goat

Goats leave their little kids for hours while they go off to forage for food, whereas the sheep never go any further than earshot from their little lambs. I thought of all the mothers who leave their little ones to go off for hours to their jobs and careers. This is goat mothering. I would rather be a sheep mother and belong to God's company, wouldn't you?

Satan wants to devour your children. He wants to get hold of their minds and infiltrate them with subtle deceptions against God and His truth. He wants to mar their spirits and take away their purity. He wants to destroy their souls.

This is why Satan hates mothers being in the home. They stand in his way. He wants them out of the way so he can do his work. He wants their children in day cares and the public education system that is becoming more and more foreign to everything that is biblical.

King David cried out that if we want our sons to be like plants grown up in their youth {mature and steadfast} and our daughters to be strong and beautiful like the pillars in a palace we have to get rid of all that is foreign to God and His Word {Psalm 144:11-13}.

Each new day we have to plan, prepare, and provide wholesome food for children's bodies. It is a negligent mother who does not care what her children eat. It is an ignorant mother who thinks that endlessly cooking and preparing nutritious meals is wasting her time. It is a powerful part of her mothering.

It is just as important to plan and prepare food for their soul and minds. It is a careless mother who lets them have unlimited electronic access and does not lead them to food that nourishes and stimulates their minds.

However, most important of all, she must plan, prepare, and provide 
fresh food each day for their spirits.

Rescue me and deliver me out of the hand of aliens, 
Whose mouth speaks deceit 
And whose right hand is a right hand of falsehood.
Psalm 144:11

***This entire post is excerpts from Nancy Campbell and an article she wrote 
Shepherding Our Flock. She has a free magazine she sends out with many 
articles encouraging mothers in their role as wife and mother.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Happy Wife, Happy Life!

Research has proven that it is a happy wife that makes a marriage happy! We didn't need research to tell us this. God's Word told us MANY years ago, "Every wise woman buildeth her house: but the foolish plucketh it down with her hands" {Proverbs 14:1}. I have always thought that women have more control over whether or not a marriage is good or bad. There are just too many verses about quarreling, nagging, and women being able to win their husbands without a word to not believe this to be so.

The Pearls have mentored hundreds of people. They always said that if they could reach the wife and she would change, the marriage was usually saved. It rarely worked if they reached the husband and he changed. Women have a POWERFUL influence on the health of a marriage.

Husbands rated their marriage higher than the wives because men don't have as high of expectations of marriage typically that women have coming into the marriage. It also found that happier women took better care of their husbands "boasting his over all health and self esteem!" They also believe that if sex is going to stop in the marriage, it is because the wife is unhappy.

This is why Debi Pearl's book Created to be His Help Meet probably begins with the first two chapters about being joyful and choosing happiness. She knows that having a joyful spirit is crucial to having a strong, solid marriage. We should be the happiest people around! We are freed from sin, saved from the wrath to come, and get to live eternally with the Lord.

Therefore, women, choose to be happy today. Even if you are going through a difficult time, you can choose to be pleasant instead of complaining which God hates. Dennis Prager says that when you are in a bad mood, it is like pouring your body odor on others. If you are in a bad mood, change your thoughts and stop giving into your emotions and feelings. Continually renew your mind with God's Truth and His promises. Decide today to be a happy wife and give your husband a happy life!

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Distinguishing Between Needs and Desires in Marriage

You have some great questions and I am surprised that more readers did not ask them, because they seem so obvious.  You ask:Does God want to meet all our needs, including physical?” {Ken's response on his post about Conflict Resolution.}

You bet, and for that matter God makes a promise to us that He WILL meet ALL of our needs… does He not? But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus” {Philippians 4:19} and again, But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you” {Matthew 6:33-34}.

We do have needs that stem from the physical aspects of our being. We need food, clothing, shelter, sex, and a need for safety. All things related to the physical are true “needs” and if they are not met our existence ceases. There may even be basic psyche needs, such as a certain amount of touch and tender care at a young age for the body and mind to properly develop. These things are true needs.

Fast forward now to an adult and tell me how many true needs outside of the physical realm do you “need” and how many of these things are desires. They may be strong desires. They may feel at times as if you might even die if you cannot get the desire for love and acceptance from others, but in reality these are not needs, but a construct of our own minds often placed there by the world.

Interestingly I was just finishing reading this article when I saw your comments and I recommend you take a moment to read the whole article, and try to digest it. A reader asked me if I had heard of Paul Tripp and the only Paul Tripp that I knew of was an old youth pastor of mine in Florida some 42 years ago. Sure enough, it was the same Paul Tripp and he has some great insight into this issue that you are inquiring about. So I can only assume that God is using this reader and me to bring you to Paul Tripp and his teaching for some reason J.  Isn’t that the way God works sometimes?

Paul Tripp writes ~

“But in a fallen world, where life doesn’t operate the way it should, there’s a difference between need and desire. Need means essential for life; desire means a strong feeling of want. Many of our desires aren’t wrong, as long as they don't rule us, but they’re simply not needs.”

“Do you see how dangerous this concept of ‘need’ can be? If you name something as a need that’s simply a desire, it can dramatically alter your life. You’ll feel entitled to it, you’ll demand it, and you’ll judge the love of others by their ability to provide it."

“It’s always best to allow your Heavenly Father to define what you need. Trust the Bible; you’re in good hands when it comes to your family privileges. As an adopted child of God, you’re entitled to heavenly grace as an heir of Christ" {Romans 8:16-17}.

Read the rest of the article, but the bottom line of my message is not to make anyone feel that their desires are all wrong, for they are not. But when we classify them as “needs” we then set ourselves up as entitled to have these desires be met by others, when in reality God may desire to meet those seeming needs another way, to meet them Himself, or remove them completely.

For many years I heard Lori say to me, "I need an intimate relationship!” I said, “Yes! I need one too, so what can I do to help us get there.” What we did not know at the time was that neither of us could fill the other's desires until we first gave up our own individual sense of what we needed from the other person and instead went about trying to please our spouse. It is in giving and doing for God and others that we live out our true identity as New Creatures in Christ, alive in Christ and complete in Him.

"Did you get the complete part?” Is this not the promise that we have from God that we are already complete in Him, and we need nothing to fill in our desires because He is to fill us up completely with His grace, His power, and His person. When the God of the universe lives inside of you… can you tell me how many needs you truly have that are not physical?

Herein lies the problem with far too many marriages and probably where you struggle in your counseling to wives. It is exactly where we were for so many years when Lori was sure that apart from my doing certain things like listening better to her, walking with her, being nice and kind and gentle with her, getting her flowers and gifts from time to time and writing cards and notes, that somehow she was broken. That the only way to fix her inner most needs was if her husband stepped up to the plate and became who she thought he should be. Yet her desires kept changing.

The problem is that when you have a broken cup of love needs that is constantly leaking your spouse is on a never ending treadmill to try to meet your demands. No matter how hard he/she tries he/she can never keep you filled up because you are leaking.

God has a plan for every leaking cup and that is not to fix it, but to kill it, and throw it out. Instead,  He buries us with Christ and raises us up with a whole new cup filled with His identity in Christ Jesus. Jesus says let me come inside of you and fill you up to the top and overflowing, once and forever, each and every moment you believe in my promises. He asks “Is my grace sufficient?” {2 Corinthians 12:9}? Are you complete in Christ? Does God supply all our needs?

The world say “no” you need more and you need it from others, but God says, “no” I want you to solely depend on Me and allow Me to meet not only your physical needs, but also give you the desires of your heart {Psalm 37:4-7}.

When a believer is self-seeking, looking to meet their own desires, even through their spouse, they do this in the flesh and are not walking in faith hand in hand with the God  of the universe who lives inside of them. There is nothing wrong with asking a spouse to meet some or all of your desires, but when your desires turn to needs, and needs turn to a sense of entitlement, then we become nothing more than Eve as she reaches for the apple believing that all that God has already given her is not enough. She thinks she knows better than God about her own needs, and besides, she wants that apple so badly. How can it hurt to demand that my husband do x, y and z and tell him that I need these things to have a great relationship?!

When we begin to realize that almost everything we think we need so badly are simply desires of our hearts, then we are willing to patiently wait on the Lord to fill up those desires or to take them away from us. I believe that a good 90% of what Lori thought were her needs from me have completely disappeared. She came to me one day and told me she finally figured it out. Figured out how we can have the intimate relationship she always wanted, and that was to stop trying to have me please her in a myriad of different ways, and instead change her focus to a life hidden with Christ where all the needs of her inner person are met in Christ Jesus. Where her role was no longer to have her needs met, but instead to try to please me by reflecting Jesus to me.

The results are hard to describe when we know who we are in Christ, accept that He is the one who will meet all of the needs of our inner person, and to patiently wait with a servant’s heart until the day Christ either fills up our heart's desires, or takes the desires away. Herein is why “win him without a word” works so wonderfully in turning marriages around, because God focuses the wife on her own behavior, and looking outward to meet the desires of others, with no more pining for unmet expectations of perceived unmet needs.

If you want to change the lives of those you counsel you must deal with them where they are at first, bad thinking and all. We know we cannot tell a broken wife that all she has to do is get her theology and doctrine straight and she will be healed.  We have to give her concrete things she can do to help move her and her husband forward in their relationship, all the while knowing that these things are but band-aids compared to the miracle cure of knowing who we are in Christ Jesus. One can use good personal relation's skills to coax and cajole their spouse into seemingly meeting some of their needs and feel better about the marriage. But at some point, we must also explain to them that their cup is broken and leaking, and the only way to stay full with all their desires met is to allow Christ to throw away our cup of needs, and replace it with Himself, and His Spirit. Christ never leaks, and we are always complete in Him. We may not feel like it from time to time, but that does not change the immutable Word of God on the subject. Does it?

Either we are New Creatures in Christ, alive to Him, dead to sin, and fully complete in Him, or God is not true to His Word, or we are none of His:

For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace.  For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God's law; indeed, it cannot. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God. You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in  you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him. But if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness.  If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you” {Romans 8:7-11}.

The irony of the story is that if we are truly dead with Christ, dead things do not care anymore about the things of this world. All we should care about is how we please Him and serve others as Image Bearers of the most High. This is easier said than done, but I promise you the moment the believer knows that their broken cup of needs is transformed by the renewing of their minds by Christ Jesus, their lives completely and radically change. They stop looking inward and start looking outward as to how to be pleasers and not takers. Then what happens? Most of the time their marriage blossoms and God gives them the desires of their heart.

And what if their desires are never met? Then they can chat about this in paradise with Abraham and ask him if God is true to His word.

“Look around you,” Abraham will say. “For every square inch I walked looking for the Promised land is filled with the New Jerusalem. God may be slow in delivering on His promises, but he keeps true to each and every single one of His Words.”

First things first for those of us in Christ. All of our needs are met in Him, and from His full and abundant reservoir of the Spirit outflows the fruit of  love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control {Galatians 5:22-23}.

Tell me again, what were those “needs” we were talking about? J Perspective rules the world and a perspective based on God’s Word places us at the right hand of God in Christ Jesus where all of our seeming needs no longer are necessary. For in that day, we live out God’s reality with Him. Is this not what our faith is all about and what it is pointing towards?

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Deleting Comments and Not Learning

Some readers accuse me of deleting comments, not respecting other's views, and NOT learning, completely opposite of the name of my blog. My blog is a teaching blog. My ministry is to teach Christian young women to love and obey their husbands, be keepers at home, love their children, be sober and good. It is not to garner a bunch of opposing ideas and "what ifs." 

I am always learning but I am learning from God's Word and from those who preach and teach God's Word. I am very selective in who I listen to. I don't just listen and learn from any one so this accusation against me is baseless. I don't desire to learn from a bunch of people who oppose what I teach and try to poke holes in it.

I am also very selective about the comments I allow on my blog. Yes, I allow opposing views but I try not to allow too many because it distracts from the message I am trying to teach. I have written about this before in my post about red herrings. Those are comments that try to pull the readers off track, whereas the comments I am talking about today, simply oppose my message.

That is fine. I am not trying to run any one's life. I am only teaching God's Word as I interpret it and I try to interpret it very literally. I don't want to spend my days continually defending my teachings. If true and honest questions are asked, I love to answer them but when readers disagree to disagree, it wastes both of our time since I am not going to change my mind.

A godly bible teacher or friend or even my husband can exhort and rebuke me and I listen since I know they are full of wisdom and have my best interest at heart. But some reader who really has no interest in the Truth but just wants to tear apart my message will be allowed no place on my blog. There are many other places you can go to and hear the message you want to hear but few teach the things I teach.

I don't like watered down, lukewarm teaching. I love to challenge people with the Truth and have it infiltrate every area of their lives. I desire more than anything to be a godly, submissive help meet to Ken. Is is easy? Not always but I am learning to take rebuke and correction from him easily because I want to learn so badly. I find that the more submissive I am to him, the better our marriage becomes.

Sure, there are a lot of "what ifs" with every thing I teach. This is where wisdom and each couple seeking godly advice comes to play. I try to touch on many things but I may not touch on every "what if" every time. No, wives don't submit if they are asked to sin, allow harm to themselves or their children, or are being physically abused. This should be common sense but common sense seems to have flown out the window these days.

I teach biblical Truth and each of you get to decide how it relates to your specific situation and how to apply it. Pray about it. Discuss it and then come to conclusions. Every one gets to live their lives the way they want. God gave us free will but I want to use my freedom to live for Him. For now on, I will be moderating ALL comments since I am getting numerous accusations and destructive comments. Only those that can contribute positively to the conversation will be allowed. Thank you for your patience!

For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: 
for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth.
Romans 1:16