Monday, November 15, 2010
Solomon did 2 things for the woman he loved. He brought her into a banquet hall, gave her an amazing feast and he put a banner of love over her as protection. He physically and emotionally provided for her. This is the way God loves us and I began to question if I showed this kind of love to the people I love...especially my spouse.
" You are like a garden fountain - a well of fresh water flowing down from the mountains of Lebanon." Song of Songs 4:15
Am I a well of fresh water for my spouse? Are You? Do you mostly whine and complain at them or do you give them the silent treatment and turn away when they do something you don't like? Do you grunt one syllable answers to their questions because your too irritated to talk? I don't always feel like I can be a well of fresh water for my spouse, and he is not always there to be that well for me, that's why I need help. I go to the one who can provide it.
"Jesus answered, 'Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give will never be thirsty. The water I give will become a spring of water gushing up inside that person, giving eternal life." John 4 13-14
I always thought the Old Testament book Song of Songs was a bit weird. I never really understood why it's in the Bible. Recently, I have been pushed into reading it for my class. It's a part of my homework reading and I see it in a new light these days. Not only does it show the passion God has for his creation, but also the passion a Man and Wife must have for each other.
"How is your lover better than other lovers?" Song of Songs 5:9
What makes you different from all the other spouse's around? When you're having coffee with your friends what do you say about your spouse.
"Wellllllll, You won't believe what my spouse did this week...." Do you insert something positive or negative here? Do you gripe and complain or share the wonderful things they've done?
I know I do stupid things to irritate my husband each week. I'm human. It's a fact that he has done things, that have disappointed me. We are human, we make mistakes.
It is our reactions that make us better than other lovers. We all handle disappointments differently. Do you scream and yell speaking unkindly to your spouse and bringing him/her to a all time low? Do you gossip about the irritation to your neighbours and friends making your spouse look like the most horrible partner a person can have whom your neighbour's and friends now disrespect? Do you keep it all to yourself and build a wall around your heart, removing yourself emotionally from your spouse?
What would happen if you love, accepted and forgave your spouse? Don't pretend the incident didn't happen. Talk to your spouse, tell them the irritation and why it bothered you. Love them anyways and move on.
My husband did that recently a few weeks ago. I'm a little conservative and I don't do a lot of things because I hang on to fear. I know this about myself and I am working on it with God's help, step by step. Rene wants me to be more outgoing, to take the initiative and get out there..."Get dirty and make mistakes." as Miss Frizzle says on the Magic School bus.
"You want me to what?" It was our 20th wedding anniversary recently and we went camping. Just the 2 of us, up a logging road, in the middle of nowhere. Mountains , streams and waterfalls surrounding us, it was the proverbial Garden of Eden and my husband was Adam and he wanted me to play Eve (before she ate the fruit).
"There's no body here." He reported and waved his arms about in melodramatic fashion. I laughed, thinking about that imaginary hiker on top of that nearest mountain who was sitting there eating a granola bar with a set of high powered binoculars that happened to be aimed right at our camp site.
"Oh, Lord...help me be brave. I'm tired of letting my fear always get in the way. My husband needs a bold wife right now. Help me." I thought, as I pushed thoughts of the google earth satellite that would be aimed right at the precise coordinates of this particular camp spot in the middle of no where. It took a moment of coaxing and inner dialogue, but I finally did release the fears of 'Big Brother is Watching' and became the Eve to my Adam (before the fruit).
"You could relax a little?" Adam was chopping firewood and laughing at His Eve who sat in the camp chair, arms and legs crossed 2 feet from the fire.
"I'm cold." Although no one knows exactly where the Garden of Eden was, I was pretty sure it was closer to the equator than I was presently.
"Would you like a blanket?" Adam was so thoughtful, "I'll put some more wood on the fire." How gentlemanly, I thought, and became more relaxed. I leaned over to slice some brie to go with our baguette and that's when the sparks started to fly....
...These were not romantic sparks as some of you may be thinking...remember Adam was adding wet wood to the fire and Eve was sitting 2 feet away....
Ladies, I just want to say, that things don't always go as planned. Stepping out of your comfort zone is what God wants us to do, sometimes we are going to get burned and we will need the first aid kit, but God always makes good. He has our back.
Eve stepped out of her fear box a little, she was scorched, but her relationship with Adam got a little closer that weekend because she stepped out.
Ask your husband what you could do to make your relationship a little closer....This week, try to step out of your comfort zone and enjoy time with your Adam.
Well, I'm off to buy some Aloe Vera Cream...Have a great week!
Thursday, November 4, 2010
"I don't want to sleep on pink sheets!" Rene and I were putting clean sheets on our bed.
"I don't like pink sheets." We inherited the sheets from my parents who had change to a King bed. Since I was the only family member left with a Queen, the sheets came to me.
"It's just a fitted sheet on the bottom, "I whined and questioned my husbands need for a different coloured sheet, "The duvet is brown...you wont even see the pink."
"I don't want to sleep ON PINK!" I couldn't understand my husbands vehemence to the rose coloured material, "I'm putting my foot down...No PINK sheets!" then he grabbed the sheet, rolled it into a ball, and threw it into the corner of the room.
"What is wrong with you?"I asked irritated, not yet cluing into the fact that something bigger than sleeping on pink sheets was bugging him here, "What if I like to sleep on Pink? Huh?" Feeling an immediate surge of 'poor me' syndrome and 'why does it always have to be about him?' attitude I glared at him then rolled my eyes in disrespect.
"It is hard to find a good wife, because she is worth more than rubies. Her husband trusts her completely. With her, he has everything he needs. She does him good and not harm for as long as she lives." Proverbs 31:10-12
"There's just too much estrogen everywhere I go." My husband came up behind me and hugged me, as I was doing the dishes later on that evening. "Between the ladies at work, my daughters, my wife...I....I just need to put on my leather jacket, sit on a motorcycle and smoke a cigar." It wasn't about the pink sheet. Well, don't I feel a little sheepish.
"A husband can hurt your feelings, be inconsiderate, uncaring, abusive, irritating, or negligent. He can say or do things that pierce your heart like a sliver. And every time you start to pray for him, you find the sliver festering. It's obvious you can't give yourself to praying the way God wants you to until you are rid of it." Stormie Omartian 'The power of a praying wife'
Sometimes we are not going to understand everything our husband says or does. Many times we will feel defensive about his reactions and or statements. But we do have the free will and authority to choose how we are going to react. With love, acceptance and forgiveness or with selfish anger, poor me attitude and disrespect. I don't mean you have to agree with everything he does... and I don't mean for you to be a door mat for an abusive attitude.
"Our love for others must never be confused as a license for their destructive behavior towards us, towards others or towards themselves. Love commits itself to their "highest good" and stands stubbornly and relentlessly against their destruction from any quarter." Jerry Cook "Love,Acceptance and Forgiveness"
God so loved the world that he gave. (John 3:16) A commitment to another being motivates us to act on his or her behalf. A shallow sensation that inspires us to respond to someone in love isn't the love that is needed to build a relationship with someone. It takes work. Agape Love. Love in action.
"Agape involves the kind of giving that can not be compensated. That concept of love is quite foreign to our culture. The mentality of this world leads us to love and give only when there is reason to assume that our love will be reciprocated." Jerry Cook "Love, Acceptance and Forgiveness"
I wasn't acting out as the Good Wife from Proverbs 31 initially, it took a little bit before I was gently reminded and an attitude adjustment was made. I love my husband, when I married him I made a commitment to him...for better and for worse...it's not always been sunny, but God does not want my marriage to fall apart. As a Mom, it's so easy to fight for my children. I would fight to the death for them. But do we do the same as a wife?
"I will not allow anything to destroy my marriage. I will not stand by and watch my husband wearied, beaten, or destroyed. I will not sit idle while an invisible wall goes up between us. I will not allow confusion, miscommunication, wrong attitudes, and bad choices to erode what we are trying to build together. I will not tolerate hurt and unforgiveness leading us to divorce." We can take a stand against any negative influences in our marriage relationship and know that God has given us authority in His name to back it up." Stormie Omartian 'The power of a praying wife'
Love is a commitment and operates independently of what we feel or don't feel. Jerry Cook goes on to say, We need to extend this love to everyone....I'm saying...even your husbands...as hard as it may be sometimes...
"I want you to know that I'm committed to you. You'll never knowingly suffer at my hands. I'll never say or do anything, knowingly, to hurt you. I'll always in every circumstance seek to help you and support you. If you're down and I can lift you up, I'll do that. Anything I have that you need, I'll share with you; and if need be, I'll give it to you. No matter what I find out about you and no matter what happens in the future, either good or bad, my commitment to you will never change. And there's nothing you can do about it. I love you."
This is how God loves us. Do we love our spouse like this?
Well Ladies, I'm off to to a little shopping for sheets at Cabala's. I found the perfect 'Camo' sheets.