Love-O-Meter

 

 

 

faith-hope-love-vinyl-wall-quotes-ebay-faith-hope-and-love-wall-art-l-5cfb7c244cecce4f

If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love [for others growing out of God’s love for me], then I have become only a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal [just an annoying distraction].  And if I have the gift of prophecy [and speak a new homeless-dogs-unconditional-love-best-friend-361__700message from God to the people], and understand all mysteries, and [possess] all knowledge; and if I have all [sufficient] faith so that I can remove mountains, but do not have love [reaching out to others], I am nothing.  If I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I surrender my body to be burned, but do not have love, it does me no good at all.

Love endures with patience and serenity, love is kind and thoughtful, and is not man-holding-woman-armsjealous or envious; love does not brag and is not proud or arrogant.  It is not rude; it is not self-seeking, it is not provoked [nor overly sensitive and easily angered]; it does not take into account a wrong endured It does not rejoice at injustice, but rejoices with the truth [when right and truth prevail].  Love bears all things [regardless of what comes], believes all things [looking for the best in each one], hopes all things [remaining steadfast during difficult times], endures all things [without weakening].

Love never fails [it never fades nor ends]. But as for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for the gift of special knowledge, it will pass away.  For we know in part, and we prophesy in part [for our knowledge is fragmentary and da738a2e672662c87d25e6520b7e7a44--black-white-photos-black-and-whiteincomplete].  But when that which is complete and perfect comes, that which is incomplete and partial will pass away.  When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child; when I became a man, I did away with childish things.  For now [in this time of imperfection] we see in a mirror dimly [a blurred reflection, a riddle, an enigma], but then [when the time of perfection comes we will see reality] face to face. Now I know in part [just in fragments], but then I will know fully, just as I have been fully known [by God].  

And now there remain: faith [abiding trust in God and His promises], hope [confident expectation of eternal salvation], love [unselfish love for others growing out of God’s love for me], these three [the choicest graces]; but the greatest of these is love. 

Three+crosses

 

1 Corinthians 13

 

Spiritual Father’s Day

fatherhood

This is for all the Spiritual Fathers out there and to all the men who answered the call and gave…

You may never know on this side of eternity the impact you have had and the difference you made, but God knows, and the fatherless children know.

Thank you for standing up and being the face of our Father when there was no father. You have never looked more like Christ than when you loved a child that was not your own, or when you came alongside a young man to mentor him, or gave validation to a young girl’s worth.

When you chose to stand in the gap and love, sacrificing time, life, finances, and sleep…

You became the shield between the fatherless and hell; you led them closer to the Father. You taught a young boy what a man is, you helped a young girl know her worth, you impacted a generation for the Kingdom of God. It may have seemed like such a small thing at the time, but believe me… nothing done for God’s children is small or insignificant.

To all you spiritual fathers who may or may not have had children of your own-

Thank you! God Bless you!

I will not leave you as orphans [comfortless, bereaved, and helpless]; I will come [back] to you. -John 14:18

“I will establish My covenant (everlasting promise) between Me and you,
And I will multiply you exceedingly [through your descendants].” – Genesis 17:2

 

 

 

 

 

A Message to Wives: Present & Future

woman-in-field

(I think we can all learn from this. I pray this post helps us to examine our hearts and motives, and blesses us with Godly wisdom, and prepares us for our inheritance.)

Every wise woman builds her house, but the foolish one tears it down with her own hands. Proverbs 14:1

As I was reading through Proverbs, a few verses really stuck out to me, causing me to say, “ouch, that stung,” and “yes, that is for me,” and “help me to be better, Lord”

Through scripture we can see the strong contrast between what God has to say and what the world is saying. You would really have to be living under a rock to not read and hear all the protests that are happening around the globe. What is displayed on the street, social media, Hollywood, and “news” sources, has worked it’s way into our homes.

This outcry for “rights” is really a deception. Please, before you X out of this post, or get unnerved, offended, or angry, just hear me out.

Let’s dissect Proverbs 14:1. OK?  This proverb is an answer to the questions, how does a wise woman build her house and how does a foolish one tear it down?

Let’s start with the wise woman.

A wise woman (wife) is:  encouraging, yielding, under submission, devoted, practices discretion, speaks in soft words, seeks for & focuses on the good & positive qualities in her husband, is gentle, sacrifices, humble, loving, thrifty & wise in her spending, saves to build & prepare for the future.

She will lift her husband to the Lord, not shame him by loose lips and speech to her girlfriends.  1 Peter 4:8 says, love covers a multitude of sins.  Here is an example  from Genesis 9 of what it is to cover a mans sin, to not shame him and back him in a corner.

Ham, the father of Canaan, saw [by accident] the nakedness of his father, and [to his father’s shame] told his two brothers outside. So Shem and Japheth took a robe an
d put it on both their shoulders, and walked backwards and covered the nakedness of their father; their faces were turned away so that they did not see their father’s nakedness. 
When Noah awoke from his wine [induced stupor], he knew what his younger son [Ham] had done to him. (Click HERE to read more)

A wise woman knows that to submit to her husband is to submit to the Lord. She trusts in the Lord, knowing the Lord is able to change the hearts of man. She makes her concerns known to her husband, but she does not beat him up with it, or stress him, or expect failure, because she will plead her cause to God, knowing He hears and He is able to direct the footsteps of her husband and will preserve her. Even if her husband is not a Christian, she trusts the Lord. She knows to serve prov31and honor her husband, she is doing it as unto the Lord, and through her faith her house hold will be saved.

She also knows the power of her words. She guards her lips. Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it and indulge it will eat its fruit and bear the consequences of their words. – Proverbs 18:21  She knows her battle is not with her husband and no amount of nagging, manipulating, pushing, or complaining is going to save her marriage. If you want to know where the real battle is click HERE.

What does a foolish woman do?

drip
Proverbs 27:15-16

A foolish woman (wife) focuses on her husbands weakness and what she perceives is wrong. She complains, murmurs, practices indiscretion, is fault finding, lies, stubborn, withholds her affection from her husband, is prideful, acts on foolish impulses, spends and does not save, wants immediate gratification, demands her rights, and is not submissive to the leadership of her husband (nor does she understand what Godly submission is).

She does not encourage her husband, she tears him down by reminding him of his past failures. Through her badgering, she boxes him in a corner, and gives him no room or desire to change any negative behavior, because she does not trust in the Lord.

She seeks and expects her fulfillment to come from her husband, not understanding only an intimate relationship with the Lord will fulfill and meet her desires.

She blames her husband for her insecurities and she seeks others to stand in agreement with her. You can recognize this woman through her words and posts on social media, she is the one who is usually shouting about her rights, her woes, professes her own strength, complains about her husband, and participates in men bashing. She carries her personal life and marital relationship in the open for all to see as a war trophy, to seek pity and platitudes from others who are singing the death rattle.

if-the-shoe-fits
Does this sound harsh?

Proverbs 14:17 instructs us to go from the presence of a foolish and self-confident man (woman), for you will not find knowledge of his (her) lips. (emphasis mine)

Women are fools to follow what the world says about who we, as women and wives, are suppose to be and do. The world is constantly trying to defend and promote themselves, by seeking to usurp the mans (husbands) role and authority.

Here is a warning to such foolish women: To seek to usurp, not acknowledge authority and position from the Lord, is to ultimately buck and fight God’s authority and in so doing, you are rejecting His favor. 

God has given us each a gift. We both, man (husband) and woman (wife) have strengths AND weakness. We do not become strong by kicking our men (husbands) where they are weak. We are stronger together!

This is how valuable and precious we are in the sight of the Lord. 

He who finds a [true and faithful] wife finds a good thing
And obtains favor and approval from the Lord. Proverbs 18:22

An excellent woman [one who is spiritual, capable, intelligent, and virtuous], who is he who can find her? Her value is more precious than jewels and her worth is far above rubies or pearls. Proverbs 31:10

Sisters, I am sharing this with you, because God has a plan and purpose for us, as women. He has a plan and a purpose for our men (husbands & fathers). He has a plan and a purpose for our marriages.

We must not remain naive, thinking it is suppose to be always easy. You have the world against you, but do not fret, stress, be scared, or look for a way out, because God is for you!

Maybe you are in a lonely marriage and it is teetering on the edge. Maybe you are holding on to the last little thread. Maybe you feel like you do not love your husband anymore and maybe it has been a long time since you felt love from your husband. Please, please, please, recognize and remember, the covenant you made with your husband, before the Lord, is not based on “feeling” and “emotion.” It is a commitment.

If you find yourself crying yourself to sleep at night. If you feel you have no other way than out. I encourage you, get off the phone with your girlfriends, deactivate your facebook account, quit murmuring under your breath, and stop looking for fault and blame. Instead, take it to God. Give it ALL to Him, your hope, your heartache, your disappointment, your anger, your fear, and just trust Him.

You do not have to burn your bra, posts angry feminist memes, hold up signs, and march in protest. Instead, remember, the God Who moved on Pharaoh to let His people go, is the same God Who will move in your husbands heart. You may just find, the more you lift your husband to God, the more love God will give you for your husband.

1 Peter 3:6: just as Sarah obeyed Abraham [following him and having regard for him as head of their house], calling him lord. And you have become her daughters if you do what is right without being frightened by any fear [that is, being respectful toward your husband but not giving in to intimidation, nor allowing yourself to be led into sin, nor to be harmed].

Every woman needs a Naomi in their life. Naomi is a spiritually mature woman who will speak life and wisdom into you. She is a great mentor and prayer partner. If you do not already have a mentor, I encourage you to find one.

Repent, ask forgiveness for murmuring and complaining, and ask His Holy Spirit to lead you and I promise, because His promise is always true, He will rise and renew your spirit, your heart, and your marriage. You can not do this on your own, but with God… ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE.

Now, get out of the world and get on your knees before God. Build your legacy, let your light shine, and may your marriage be hell’s worse nightmare!

I welcome any questions, comments, and especially testimonies.

God Bless You!

good-woman

Be Free & Stay Free 

Under Fire

soldiers

“Cover me! I am going in!”

“Go! I got your back!”

This is the beauty of relationship. For this reason, relationships are important, to watch over each other and cover each other. Everyone has strengths and weaknesses. When one is weak, then the other stands up and covers them with their strength.

Two are better than one because they have a more satisfying return for their labor;  for if either of them falls, the one will lift up his companion. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and does not have another to lift him up. Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 

If you haven’t figured it out by now, we are in a war. If you are a follower of Christ the attack is intense and personal. It is a spiritual war and the enemy, our adversary, is relentless and cunning. He uses gorilla tactics and his attacks can sometimes be so subtle you won’t even recognize where the attack is coming from. He will misdirect your attention, cause confusion and offense, then before you know it you may find yourself fighting your ally.

Marriages go down in flames from “friendly fire” when they do not recognize who the real enemy is.  

Again, if two lie down together, then they keep warm; but how can one be warm alone? And though one can overpower him who is alone, two can resist him. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken. Ecclesiastes 4:11-12 

Who is the three chord strand? It is husband, wife, and the Holy Spirit. For the marriage to be strong, Christ must be in the center. Not only the center, but the foundation. Both husband and wife must be firmly rooted in Him.

The attack always starts in the mind. The enemy will throw things at you from without and then try to speak to you from within. He will attempt to keep you busy focusing on the “issues” until the whispers of his accusations will begin to drown out the voice of Holy Spirit. Rather than renewing your strength in Him, you will grow weary and you will look to place blame on someone or some thing.

You are not fighting a visible enemy. Your husband/wife is not your enemy.

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood [contending only with physical opponents], but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this [present] darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly (supernatural) places. Ephesians 6:12 

You have a battle plan 

warfare
The weapons of your warfare are POWERFUL! 

The marriage covenant is until death (not a death sentence). Love lays His life down for His beloved. You may never be required to take a bullet for your husband/wife, or stand in front of a train, but you are required to lay down and put to death:

  • Pride
  • Selfish Ambitions
  • Un-Forgiveness
  • Bitterness
  • Anger
  • Offense

Allow the Holy Spirit to breathe life into you and fill you with His fruit of love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.

It is in the small things that strengthen your marriage. The small daily acts of kindness towards each other nurture a lasting, healthy, honoring marriage. It is dangerous to neglect each other. Neglect is an open door for the enemy to wreak havoc. When you understand your spouse is a precious gift, and the representation of Christs love for His church, you will understand that laying your life down is actually living and glorifies God. When two become one, and Christ is the center, and you love each other and serve each other as unto the Lord, then you will experience life and life abundantly in your marriage. You will experience the peace and joy of knowing that no matter what the world has to throw at you, together you will be just fine.

Practice these words:

  • I love you
  • I am sorry, please forgive me
  • I forgive you
  • Let’s pray

Cover each other in prayer, with understanding and patience. Worship together and serve together. Then when that enemy comes with his attack you know you have each others back.  Just because this is war, you do not have to be a casualty. You have the victory. Stand strong, hold your position, and take the camp.

Be Free & Stay Free 

1 Corinthian 13 & Marriage

faith-hope-love

controllinghusband
Don’t break her spirit

If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love [for others growing out of God’s love for me], then I have become only a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal [just an annoying distraction]. And if I have the gift of prophecy [and speak a new message from God to the people], and understand all mysteries, and [possess] all knowledge; and if I have all [sufficient] faith so that I can remove mountains, but do not have love [reaching out to others], I am nothing. If I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I surrender my body to be burned, but do not have love, it does me no good at all.

Love endures with patience and serenity, love is kind and thoughtful, and is not jealous or envious; love does not brag and is not proud or arrogant.  It is not rude; it is not self-seeking, it is not provoked [nor overly sensitive and easily angered]; 

Angry woman screaming against her husband with his face deformed
Don’t dishonor him

it does not take into account a wrong endured.  It does not rejoice at injustice, but rejoices with the truth [when right and truth prevail].  Love bears all things [regardless of what comes], believes all things [looking for the best in each one], hopes all things [remaining steadfast during difficult times], endures all things [without weakening].

 

Love never fails [it never fades nor ends].

 

But as for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for the gift of special knowledge, it will pass away.  For we know in part, and we prophesy in part [for our knowledge is fragmentary and incomplete].  But when that which is complete and perfect comes, that which is incomplete and partial will pass away. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child; when I became a man, I did away with childish things.  For now [in this time of imperfection] we see in a mirror dimly [a blurred reflection, a riddle, an enigma], but then [when the time of perfection comes we will see reality] face to face. Now I know in part [just in fragments], but then I will know fully, just as I have been fully known [by God].

cps-4

And now there remain: faith [abiding trust in God and His promises], hope [confident expectation of eternal salvation], love [unselfish love for others growing out of God’s love for me], these three [the choicest graces]; but the greatest of these is love.

 

Be Free & Stay Free

 

 

Wolves Aren’t Good Pets

What  I am about to tell you is a true story…

wolf 2

After careful consideration and planning, my little girl and I adopted a dog from the animal shelter. We were ready for the responsibility and my travel had slowed down.

We made the trip to the animal shelter and saw the most beautiful dog. He was well behaved and he was the only dog who didn’t bark like crazy. My daughter fell in love with him instantly. I told her we would go home and think about this over night and then come back. There was much to consider adopting this dog. He was big, had lots of hair (which meant there would be lots of shedding), and would need extra walks and exercise. Not too mention all the food he would eat.

The next day we go back to the shelter and we take him out for a walk. Yes, I fell in love with him, too! OK, this is our dog, he will be a part of our family. We adopt him, micro chip him, get his shots, buy the toys, the leash, the food, and crate. My daughter named him Mordecai, Mordy for short.

Mordy was the perfect dog! He was so well behaved, not one accident in the house,  he walked nicely with us on the leash, he was affectionate, he followed us around the house, and he NEVER barked.  Because I am a single mom, Mordy also brought with him a sense of security;  after all, who would break into a house with a dog this big?!

Everyone commented on how beautiful he was. He walked so proud. He held his head high.

But no matter where we went, people would ask me the same question.  Comments about his beauty were followed by, “Is he a wolf?”

“No, he is a husky mix.” I would answer, because that is what the papers said.

The day came for Mordy to get the snip. You know, the snip male dogs get. Poor boy. I drop him at the vet and in a few hours I go back to pick him up.

“Surgery went well,” the vet tech told me. Then she asked me the question… “Do you know what kind of dog you have?”

“Yea, he is a husky mix.”

“No.” She tells me. “He is a wolf.”

Gads! I got a dog and it turns out to be a wolf. Everyone saw it but me. This began to explain a lot.

After the honeymoon period, Mordy’s wolf side started to show. You see, in a wolf pack there is only one alpha. In my home Mordy viewed me as the alpha.  He went from the best dog ever, to a wolf challenging my position as alpha. It became quite intimidating, let me tell ya.

What I viewed as a well behaved dog, was actually a wolf in waiting. He never barked, because wolves don’t bark. He could have never been the watchdog protector, because he would assume the alpha (uh, that would be me), would take care of any intruder. He would go back and forth, one minute the best gentle dog, and then the next minute a wild wolf. It was unnerving sleeping with one eye open.

I was sad when I had to find Mordy a new home. He is now with a man who knows how to handle wolves.

I learned a valuable lesson from this experience. Wolves do not make good family members. They are to be in the wild. You can not tame a wolf.

I also learned another lesson. Sometimes people are like wolves. The Bible warns us about wolves in sheeps clothing. I met a few wolves. And I think I have learned how to spot them.

You may not recognize them at first. Because, like Mordy, they are very attractive at first. They are on their best behavior. They are well behaved, gentle, and do whatever it takes to get into your home. They will lull you into a false sense of security.

Then their true nature will start to show, it will be subtle at first, and you will think things like, “Maybe he is having a bad day?” or “Maybe I am not giving him enough attention?”

Then he will watch for your vulnerabilities. He will challenge you. He will bite you right in the backside. Not only will you begin to feel “not safe” with him, you will not be safe period!  Because it is not in his interest to protect you. Remember, he wants to dominate you, because that is what wolves do.

He will begin to shed his beautiful coat, leaving a mess for you to clean up, and he will no longer be attractive. It starts little by little, at first you will doubt what you are seeing. After all, he was so beautiful, how did he get so ugly? Remember the walks you used to enjoy?  Forget that!  Because he doesn’t want to walk with you anymore;  now he just wants to pull you into the oncoming traffic.

wolf

This is how to protect yourself from being deceived into bringing a wolf into your home.

1. Listen to the people closest to you. If they cry wolf, you just might have a wolf.

2. Don’t fall for the pretty coat. Eventually he will shed the coat. What’s underneath is what is important. To be more clear, the Bible says it like this, you will know them by their fruit. Look for the fruit.

Galatians 5:22-23

But the fruit of the [Holy] Spirit [the work which His presence within accomplishes] is love, joy (gladness), peace, patience (an even temper, forbearance), kindness, goodness (benevolence), faithfulness, Gentleness (meekness, humility), self-control (self-restraint, continence). Against such things there is no law [that can bring a charge].

3. A wolf will not protect you!  If he doesn’t have your best interest,  if he is self-centered, if it’s always about him… then you may have a wolf.

4. If he is not genuine, is short tempered, lacks self control, and you don’t trust him to not bite you in the backside…

RUN!!!  You have a wolf!

Be Free & Stay Free