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How to Build Trust

Ever wonder how to build a strong Trust relationship with your husband? I have a few tips. It is on my heart to  re-post this from a Proverbs 31 Mini Series I did last year. Enjoy... I love Proverbs 31 because it spells out what a woman, wife and mother should look like.  I know that there are many other scriptures that speak about women throughout the Bible, and they too, are powerful; however, I am going to delve into the Proverbs 31 woman.  It will take several posts, and I'm sure tears and joy as I, too, am walking out what the Lord is speaking to my heart.  I pray that I will be a blessing to those of you who read and that you will be encouraged and challenged  as well.

Let's get started...

The Wife

Have you ever encountered a couple, friend or acquaintance, that you just knew if the wife would shut up, maybe her husband would be better off?  You know...the one who is nagging or taking small jabs at her husband's expense. Joking about his character flaws or abilities...even as she pretends it is all in jest. Have you been that wife? Do you know if you are that wife?

I, myself have been guilty of this to some extent. I have, in the past, poked fun of my sweet hubby and seen the reaction on his face telling me I went to far and hurt his Spirit, feelings, pride...etc.  You don't have to be in a public place or even with other people for your words to do damage. Words can hurt even in the confines of your home.

"Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies. The heart of her husband does safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil. She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life." (Pro 31:10-12)

Scripture paints a picture of what we are to be as wives. Genesis tells us that we are to be helpmates to our husbands.  1 Timothy 3:11 says "...wives likewise must be dignified (honorable),not slanderers..." Our tongue should be used to edify and lift up our husbands...even when we don't think they DESERVE to be praised and lifted up. Our husbands will not EVER be the men of God they need to be when we are out of line.  Scripture says that it is better for a man to live alone in the corner of a house than to live with a quarrelsome, brawling or angry wife (Proverbs 21:9, 19; 25:24).  As married women, we need to be a safe refuge for our husbands.  He should be able to bear his heart, faults, inadequacies, joys and triumphs with us without  fear of being made fun of later, having his words thrown back at him, or being laughed at or ridiculed.

Our words can break the people we love.  This scripture warns us of the consequences of loosing our husband's trust...He will have NEED of SPOIL....Hmmm, what does that mean?  Maybe the sweet secretary that gives him the time of day, the neighbor that makes his favorite pie because she remembered his birthday, the grocery store cashier that laughs at his jokes...may innocently promote a feeling of resentment toward his wife, set his mind to wandering....or even worse, can lead to infidelity (whether emotional or physical)! Becoming a Wife that reflects Biblical principles is not always easy, nor is it always what our flesh WANTS to do, but it is what God has laid out in scriptures for us to model our lives by. It is a CHOICE you can make...It is YOUR responsibility to the Word of God to follow after it...It is NOT contingent on your husbands behaviors.  I will bring peace to you and your home, a Godly heritage for your children...and even help other marriages you touch along the way.

Intentional living

 Intentional Step to take:

Start by praying and asking the Lord to make you aware of the words that are not edifying...that are tearing down your marriage. Then, when you hear the words come out, stop and change them & apologize.  If you can...don't even say what you are thinking!  CONTROL your TONGUE!  It has the power of Life and death in it, so CHOOSE life!  Speak encouragement.  Let it be genuine, heart-felt.  It doesn't have to be deep, just positive...start little if you have to.  Compliment his dress, hair, cooking, cleaning, joke telling (laugh at him)... this will begin to form a new habit and help change you pattern of thinking. Your children will even notice and begin to change the way they regard their father as well.  As for your husband...after a while, he will begin to trust again...maybe even have a spark in his eye again.

My Wifely Pursuits!

I am in this boat with you.  I am not perfect BY ANY MEANS...this week my goal is to laugh at my hubby's jokes more and to compliment his positive qualities to him and to others when he is around.

I would love to hear any positive results you begin to see from following God's model!

May you walk in Love and Mercy this week,

 

You can check out the update on this Post here.  And for the rest of the series...just click the Proverbs 31 Tab above.

Katie

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To Work, or Not to Work...

So...back to Proverbs 31.  We have seen the relationship between Husband and Wife exemplified. We have also looked at the subject of Hospitality.  Today, I had intended on writing about the confidence and strength the Proverbs 31 woman had, but...as I was writing the Lord let me a different direction.  So...working is today's topic of conversation...enjoy. I love that the picture God has painted in the Word for women is so well rounded.  So many times, especially in secular society, a woman is either or...she is labeled and classified...but not usually as well rounded as she is intended to be.  Just take our media for example.  You usually have a career woman who is very successful in her field, but she is lacking in the family department.  Trying and struggling to make it all work...OR...You have a sweet homemaker that is great at getting everything organized and taking care of the details for hubby and kids, but she is usually pictured as someone with no financial sense and when tradegy strikes...she is at a loss of what to do.

I don't think it is an either or situation.

"She considereth a field, and buyeth it: with the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard..She maketh fine linen, and selleth it; and delivereth girdles unto the merchant. (Pro 31:16-17, 24)"

Now, before I go any farther...REMEMBER...I am a homemaker!  I believe that ALL women should be HOME with their children.  That our first responsibilty is to our family and raising a generation to run after the things of God...not hope that they pick it up at church or from the Godly neighbor. BUT...that doesn't negate the Proverbs 31 scripture!

intentional living

Let's take a look...She conciders a field and buys it, with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard. She perceives that her merchandise is good.  Well, that sounds like she has financial sense.  She buys and sells! In verse 19 she spins, and in verse 24, "She maketh fine linen, and selleth it; and delivereth girdles unto the merchant."  She is a woman that has skills and talents.  She brings in income, or food, or maybe she barders for provisions for her family. I do see that she can still takes care of her family and home, physically, while she is buying and selling. I also see that she is in balance...the last 21 verses in Proverbs are about this woman and only 2 verses are about her "job" or work outside the home.  There is more time spent on how she gives, provides and exsaunerates her husband than to how she climbs the career ladder.

I have friends that bring in outside income. One homeschools and works...her job doesn't require her to go into an office so she can do both, successfully.  Another one of my friends is a college professor and is gone a few hours while her children are at school, leaving her plenty of time and energy to be wife, mom and homemaker when she is home.  It was a career move that she intentionally made when she saw that the classroom teaching life was robbing her of her time and energy for her own family.  Another very influencial woman in my life is a world published author and speaker, and along with her husband, she runs a world wide ministry. She also homeschooled all of her children and taught them how to serve by including them at her speaking engagements. I have other friends, who sell multilevel products, peddling their wears when it is convienient to their family schedule...The point is to have a heart for the Lord...NOT your career.  Earning money, is NOT the problem...neglecting all the other areas because of a job IS a problem. 

If you cannot honor your husband and earn his confidence, get your children ready for school (or school them yourself), make sure everyone is fed, give to people in need...AND speak to others with wisdom and kindness because you are too tired from working...maybe you need to pray and ask the Lord to show you how you can make some changes.  Maybe sacrifices like an older car or a smaller house might be an answer.  I know that it is a sacrificial lifestyle to live on one income!  I do it...one car, small house payment, nice, but not expensive clothes, good food, but on a budget. But it is SO worth it!

If you are a single mom...OF COURSE, you must earn a living!!!! I completely understand...yet, your heart should first be on the Lord, and then your children, and THEN your job.  You career should be your means, not your love or passion.

"Favor is deceitful and beauty is vain: but a woman that fears the Lord, she shall be praised.  Giver her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates" Proverbs 31:31-31

The Fear, or reverence, of the Lord is what brings praise, reward, renoun that is eternal.  The fruit of our hands, well...it is temperal.  Jesus tells us in Matthew, "But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."(Mat 6:20-21)

I pray that the Lord will continue to bring up a generation of women who's hearts are turned toward Him, whose passions are not for the things of this world, who love and honor their husbands and who are bringing up mighty children of God.

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Welcome...

Hospitaliy...what does it look like to you? Webster's (1828) defines hospitality as

"The act or practice of receiving and entertaining strangers or guests without reward, or with kind and generous liberality."

To me, well, it's a heart issue. How we serve the Lord is reflected in how we reach out to the ones around us, how we welcome people into our lives and homes.  I love to have people over.  I enjoy preparing so that they will feel comfortable and relaxed in my home. I have, in the past, been so caught up in preparing in the physical, that I have often neglected the emotional and spiritual side of hospitality.

You see, the Lord, while I have been studying Proverbs 31, brought light and revelation knowledge to me about how I was reaching out and serving those around me. As I was studying the Word, I was also rereading Mission of Motherhood by Sally Clarkson.  I love this book because it makes me stop and reevaluated parenting from a Biblical perspective. This passage hit me square between the eyes:

"Another home that has really inspired me is that of my friend Phyllis, who shares my mother's gift for hospitality.  She always prepares for her guests ahead of time-lighting a fire in the fireplace, placing glowing candles throughout the rooms, turning on soft music, placing a plate of hot muffins on the coffee table-so that they always enter a room anointed with comfort. More important, though, is the way this woman greets her visitors.  When I walk in her door, she always looks into my eyes with an expression that says, "I am so happy to see you!" Her warm embrace and welcoming words always give me the feeling that I, above all others am special to her.  I know that Phyllis has to make a special effort to greet the many people who com in and out of her door the way.  Her warm welcome is a reflection of the commitment in her heart." (pg. 162)

 

WOW!  I was really feeling good about myself as I read the first 2 sentences!  I do all of that...lighting candles, soft music...WAIT!!!!!  I, in my busyness have forgotten to GREET my guest warmly!  HEEELLLLOOOO...isn't that the point?!  What good does it do to prepare my physical home for company, and then not warmly invite them in to enjoy?  Not much!  This passage has really resonated in my mind.

I am so thankful to serve a living God who loves me beyond comprehension and wants me to live to touch others for His glory.  I am thankful that he is a God of second chances and that I am still learning from the Father.  As soon as I read this passage, I wholeheartedly repented for being "Martha" too much and neglecting the heart of hospitality. You see, although it is nice for my guests to smell the candles and listen to the background music, they are not at my home for that reason.  They are here to visit, to deepen friendships, seek council, laugh, cry, find hope and even bring hope and life through my doors to my heart!  If I am not prepared to receive them with a cheerful, welcoming smile, I can guarantee that I have not prepared my heart either.

Intentional LivingI have had many, many opportunities to practice what I am preaching!  Praying for my guests while preparing my home to receive them, prepares my heart as well...and THAT changes everything. I still have to make a conscience decision to look up from what I am preparing, answer the door myself (instead of the children) and greet my guest with a hug and a smile.  I know that sounds ridiculous, but it's the truth.  It's more important that all the little messes being picked up, or the coffee being ready or even the candles and music.  It's what make drop-ins feel welcome and expected company know you have been awaiting their arrival.

In Proverbs 31, the Lord showed me again that showing hospitality to others begins in the home, showing love and grace to our families.  It is extended out to friends, family and strangers. It's in the preparation, in our actions and in our mouths...

"She riseth also while it is yet night, and giveth meat to her household, and a portion to her maidens. She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth forth her hands to the needy. She is not afraid of the snow for her household: for all her household are clothed with scarlet. She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness." Proverbs 31:15, 20, 21, 26

May your heart be turned toward the Lord as you show hospitality to those in your home and around your community.  My kindness and wisdom be on your tongue and the heart of the Lord be in your preparations.

 

 

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Having the Trust of Your Husband: an update

Just a quick update on "My Wifely Pursuits" from the last post.  I have been laughing at my sweet husband's corniness!  I was given the opportunity to walk out my last  post less than 5 minutes after I posted! Actually it was more like...I shut the computer, walked outside and INSTANTLY had a sweet, silly, CORNEY comment thrown my way from my hubby AND my son!  HeeHee!  I PASSED! Since then there has been MANY silly remarks and even an invitation to dance in the kitchen...something I usually scoff at (silly, I KNOW!)...but I danced with him...and had a blast!  Even the kids got a lesson on the 2 step!

It never ceases to amaze me how simply laughing at my husband instead of blowing him off changes SO much.  I still have to remind myself that I need work...and MAKE EFFORT to laugh and not roll my eyes, but I am doing better. I have tasted the fruits and they are sweet conversation, much more laughter, fewer eye rolls and a general peace in our home.

God is faithful!  When we follow the guidelines in His Word, He is faithful to bring Joy, restoration, peace, strength, guidance...and so much more!

So...more on Proverbs 31 coming soon...Keep on keepin' on!

 

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