love

Your Marriage Team

Thinking about getting married?

Here are some questions to ask yourself about the person you're considering:

1.     Do they love God more than they love you? As flattering as it may be to have someone adore you, it is vital that you not come first in their life. You do not want to be an idol. God will not bless idolatry.

2.      Do they have respectful, healthy relationships with their parents and siblings? The way they already do family relationships is what you can expect from them if you start a new family with them. Spend a lot of time with them and their family together so that you can get a good idea of what is in store for you.

3.     Do they have the same life mission as you? It will be very hard to accomplish your heart’s mission if you are tied to someone who is headed in a different direction than you are.

Already Married?

Once you are married, you have a lifetime to grow and strategize together in your life mission. Every family should take time to formulate their mission.

What does your family bring to the world to make it a better place?

If you find that you are not headed in the same direction as your spouse, bailing on them is not an option. You will need to find a new mission that you both can invest in.

God is completely committed to helping you have a bright future. He is so faithful to complete the work that He has started in you. It is hard to get off track when you have a sincere desire to follow Him.

He even takes your mistakes and weaves them into your destiny to make your story powerful. He redeems every messy situation to the core.

Think of a wall with a hole knocked into it. God doesn’t just slap some scotch tape and spray paint onto it. He does a thorough repair job to the point that the wall looks brand new. 

Destiny key: Don’t be overwhelmed by trying to figure out God’s will for your life. Submit yourself to God and your leaders, get into a place of peace and do what God is putting in your heart.

 

For I am confident of this very thing,

that He who began a good work in you

will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.

Philippians 1:6


Check out my mom's message called A Marriage Behind Closed Doors. Warning: It contains mature content.

Do you desire a strong and healthy marriage? After over 41 years of marriage, Leanne shares from her heart the principles that have contributed to having the great marriage she has today. Through this inspiring message you will laugh, weep, and be intrigued by the truths and realities we all face in our marriages. Whether you're presently married, looking forward to marriage, or know someone who needs a marriage like this, you will not be disappointed by "A Marriage Behind Closed Doors!

How To Pray Against Terrorism

It seems like almost every day we are bombarded with images and stories of brutal attacks by terrorists. I think that we can tend to either get really scared or become numb. What if we were to avoid both of those options and pray powerful prayers instead?

Let's start by reading what Jesus had to say about it:

In fact, the time is coming when anyone who kills you will think they are offering a service to God. They will do such things because they have not known the Father or me. John 16:2b-3

It really all boils down to a lack of love. People who have hateful, murder filled hearts have not yet received the love of God. They go through life thinking that they have to prove something to God, not knowing that they can turn to Jesus and have a good Father who loves them so deeply. They live like orphans, fighting for every scrap, when they actually could have a relationship with a Father who wants to bless them with every good thing.... They just don't know it yet.

Let's start to pray faith filled prayers that God would visit terror minded people with His great love. Let's pray that He would visit them in their dreams or in any other way He sees fit, not just to protect ourselves from attacks, but so that these orphan ones can experience true love and freedom.

Jesus died because they too were valuable to the Father. Let's value what He values, and pray that the lost ones will come home!

Don't Spew on the Ones You Love

I bet that if you had a stomach virus, you would never intentionally walk up to your loved ones and puke in their faces. Gross! Who would ever do that to anyone, much less than to the people who really matter to them.

Reasonable people try to stay away from others when they're sick. They do it out of mercy and kindness. They stay away until they are well, and no longer contagious. If the sickness doesn't seem to be passing, they get to a doctor to do their best to resolve the situation. Being sick is no fun for the one who is sick or for the rest of the family.

Why is it that we let emotional issues go unsorted for years and years? When the emotional pain buttons in our lives get pushed, the fallout hurts the people around us at least as much it hurts us.

You know the secret areas of pain that you keep hidden and hope that no one ever finds out about? I have news for you, people may not know the specifics, but they certainly feel the painful symptoms.

If you aren't willing to get healthy for your sake, at least do the hard work of getting yourself sorted out for the sake of the people you love. You really don't want people around you to feel like they have to spend their whole lives walking on eggshells.

Don't delay. Get the help you need. Make an appointment with a counselor or reach out to get with a mature, trusted mentor.

Action point: I recommend you follow Danny Silk - Loving on Purpose and considering joining a small group with The Ultimate Journey.

If you don't deal with your issues, everyone around you will have to.


Keep up your creativity with the July News from Fireflies Aglow!

You've Got Mail

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There are two questions I can be sure my husband will ask me every day: #1 Has anyone checked the mail yet?

#2 Is there any chocolate in the house?

I generally have a confused feeling when he asks me these questions, because neither thought is naturally on my radar.

#1 Sorting through mail feels like a chore to me, so I tend to put off checking the mail.

#2 Chocolate is not very high on my list of favorites. Carbs are my weakness.

Today I want to focus on question #1.

Why does Christopher have such an interest in the mail.....

I decided to ask him about it. His reasons were:

  • maybe we will get an unexpected card
  • maybe we will get an unexpected gift
  • maybe a package that we forgot we ordered will arrive

All of his reasons had to do with the hope of getting a fun surprise!

This reminded me of one of the ways that Christopher and I are opposites.

I like to plan and check things off my list. I tend to live in task mode.  I really don't care for surprises, even good ones.

Christopher likes a plan too, but a good surprise puts a big smile on his face!

Overall I think that his tendency to expect something good to come to us is a much more joyful way to live than my tendency to view all mail as work.

Can you picture how excited he would be if someone sent him a surprise gift of chocolate:

IN THE MAIL!

Maybe there is someone in your life that you could send an old school surprise to this week. Even a scrap of paper with a few encouraging words written on it would make sorting the mail a little more fun.

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May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Romans 15:13

Friendship & Betrayal

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  Have you ever been betrayed? In order to be betrayed you have to have loved and trusted someone deeply.

It is stunning to me that Jesus knew from the beginning that Judas would betray Him, but it did not hold Him back from including Judas in His inner circle and risking His heart.

I think that if I knew ahead of time that someone was going to betray me, I would not even introduce myself much less bring the person into my inner circle.

Jesus is so different from me. He blows my mind. He keeps His love turned on towards all people 100% of the time.

For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were who did not believe, and who it was that would betray Him. (John 6:64b NASB)

Jesus' life illustrates this truth: even if you do everything absolutely perfectly, you will still experience rejection.

Perfection does not equal acceptance from the people around you.

You might even say that the more Christ like you become, the more you may experience rejection.

Jesus walked in confidence because His sense of self worth did not come from His companions.

When the Jews wanted to kill Him He said,  “Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, unless it is something He sees the Father doing; for whatever the Father does, these things the Son also does in like manner. For the Father loves the Son, and shows Him all things that He Himself is doing. (John 5:19-20 NASB)

Jesus' identity was completed wrapped up in what the Father thought about Him and in living according to His Father's wishes.  

You won't be healed of your rejection by analyzing the source of your rejection but by looking at the source of your acceptance. (Bob Sorge)

Your Father loves you with the same exact love He loves Jesus with. Make living your life in Him your highest aim and the acceptance or rejection from people will lose its hold on you.

 

Any pain you have stored up in your heart from betrayal belongs to you. You can choose to own it and to let it go. Choose to let it go today!

I bless you to live in peace.

P.S.

Our family watched a movie this week that I would love to share with you. It sucked all of us in because it is a fascinating true story.  I also liked it because it shows brothers laying down their lives for each other.

I checked it out for free from our public library, but here is the link to check it out on Amazon:

The Good Lie

God's Weak Spot

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A new year brings transition. Transition can be awkward and even scary, but you have a good Father who has picked you as his favorite. I recently watched a couple of documentaries about Queen Elizabeth 1 of England. She was a powerful leader for 46 years. She was bold, and she knew her own mind.

Though she never married there was one man in her life who was her favorite. She had a serious weak spot for him. She gave him her ear, positions of influence, and great financial provision even when people around her thought she was being foolish and too extravagant.

When her favorite died too early, she poured her favor onto his son in his place.

As I got to know a bit about this powerful ruler I was so struck by what it means to be a favorite. Favor opens doors to you that would never open otherwise.

God's heart is turned by you and towards you. You are His weak spot.

You can move forward into this next season of your unfolding destiny with faith and confidence because your Daddy God is crazy about you.

As we transition into a new year let's go in with peace!