We’re All Unique

Over the years I’ve noticed married couples and how they interact. Every couple is unique in their own way. One of the sayings in Proverbs gets me thinking every time I read it:

Proverbs 30:18, (KJV):  There be three things which are too wonderful for me, yea, four which I know not:

Pro 30:19  The way of an eagle in the air; the way of a serpent upon a rock; the way of a ship in the midst of the sea; and the way of a man with a maid.

(photo from images search yahoo.com, for married couples)

We visited a couple in their eighties and nineties, she and he respectively and she asked how we came to meet and date. Then I asked how they met and when did she know he wanted to go out with her. He glowed when he spoke about her and told us he has a good wife. She worked in a small restaurant and he kept coming in for coffee. One night she got stranded there and was trying to come up with a way to get home. He offered to give her a ride and she didn’t feel comfortable with that until her co-worker vouched for his character. Since she trusted her co-worker, she accepted his offer and the rest is history. 🙂

At a marriage enhancement group of some sort, many years ago, we attended because I convinced my husband that we should go. He told me we were okay, but I felt there’s always room for growth. He’s a nice guy, so we went. We wrote in notebooks about our feelings and what can I say, I’m a writer. I would have about a page and a half for each category; he would have about three sentences. Then we had to exchange our notebooks and talk about them. For him, this was akin to torture. By the end of the weekend, I felt sorry for him.

I’ve shared here before that he and I see the world differently. He’s opposite me in lots of ways. Even our upbringing wasn’t the same, although we both came from parents that loved us and worked hard to provide for us and we learned to work for a living, too.

He was brought up in a rural town, and I grew up in a city. He’s athletic, I’m not. His parents didn’t attend church. We went every Sunday and for the first eight years of school I attended a religious school. He got straight A’s in school, not I. Well, there are other areas of differing interests, but I’ll stop here.

I think what helps our marriage is our willingness to step into each other’s world. If he wants to watch basketball, I’ll watch for a while. I may even watch the entire game and enjoy it. When he wants to watch some kind of wrestling match or no-holds- barred Eastern world fighting, I may notice for about twenty seconds and then I leave the room. I’ll get busy doing something I want to do and then later he’ll look for me and we’ll do something together. He started watching a series on television about a Canadian Mounty and a schoolteacher falling in love based on stories set in the early 1900’s and he now likes it. The occasional catching of criminals and the horses appeal to him more than the relationship stuff, I’m sure.

We agree on the major things in life. We both love God and pray for others to know how much God loves them. We view money and the use of it pretty much the same. Sometimes we compromise if there’s a limited amount and we both want something at the same time. He’ll get what he wants this time, and I’ll get what I want the next time, or vice-versa. It usually works out. We talk about financial disagreements when we’re not exhausted and cranky.

Our differences balance us out when we listen to each other. Every marriage has ups and downs, but I learned over the years to give him space when he needed it. If I needed to confront him over something, I usually prayed beforehand and I waited for the right time to bring it up. When he ran into problems at work, I didn’t talk that day. I didn’t wait too long, but I wanted us both well rested and less stressed when I brought up a touchy subject.

My aunt and uncle told me the secret to their successful marriage was the respect they showed each other. As an older adult, she decided to go to college. She told him he had to keep up with her on the learning curve so they didn’t grow apart. He agreed to, so they talked about the new concepts she encountered. She actually ended up becoming a college professor for less than ten years if memory serves me, and it didn’t seem to hinder their relationship.

One time we stopped for ice cream at a roadside stand and she told him to choose the flavor for her. He tried to get her to pick the kind she liked the best. When he came out carrying a cone without her favorite ice cream, she pouted and frankly I don’t think he even noticed. She got over it soon enough, but I thought, my mom wouldn’t have tried to get my dad to figure out her choice.

We’re all unique and interact differently. She was an only child and they never had children, so she liked to be pampered once in a while. She didn’t demand a lot, but I suppose like all of us, once in a while she was selfish.

She kept a tidy home, worked outside the home and sewed clothes and doll clothes for us – her nieces. She was like a second mom to us, my brothers and sisters.

May God bless you. If you’re married, it’s worth it to work at your relationship for your sake and the sake of the many people that know you and care about you. I’ve heard it said that divorce is worse than losing your spouse due to death.

When I consider things from my husband’s point of view and we communicate clearly and kindly, things go better at our house. He’s good to me, too. He tries to understand where I’m coming from. We’re all works in progress is what I figure.

Do you have some ideas for solidifying a marriage that I didn’t mention that are appropriate for any audience? I’d love to hear from you.

Chosen

 

My husband and I got invited to two functions today. One was an auction to benefit student scholarships in memory of a loved one now residing in heaven due to a bout of cancer. The family gives proceeds to two or three individuals heading to college to pursue a degree in medicine. Their family has a number of nurses and Certified Nursing Assistants or CNAs.

The other event was an early Thanksgiving meal coupled with the chance to celebrate a birthday.

The first group of people asked everyone to bring a dish to pass. The second one was hosted by a couple without any children and the man loves to bake and cook. So, he turned down any offer of food. He’s a contractor as well, and he does all three of those things well. The second gathering met in a home, so the number of attendees was significantly lower.

We didn’t eat until after the auction at the first one, so I ate a handful of grapes and a slice of pumpkin roll, a cake-like material rolled up with cream cheese icing inside. It’s only available around here in the Fall. Then I scurried out the door to get to the party in time. The couple we visited provide plenty of food for their company, so I knew I could eat later.

The lady of the house tends to give prophetic utterances, although not as often at home as in church when I’m there. Today, she spoke out about the turmoil in our country over the elections. I don’t remember all of it, but God said not to be overly alarmed about the controversies, that He is in control and that we should look to Him.

I remember one of the ladies saying that we need to be in prayer for our country. It amazes me to read some of the newspaper and internet writers. They don’t get why people didn’t vote for Hillary. She certainly had the media’s endorsement. A couple of weeks ago, I scrolled down Yahoo’s news items to about the twentieth item in line. A headline with the word Christian in it caught my attention; seeing as how I call myself a Christian, I clicked on it. Part of the article said something about Hillary not liking religious fanatics that stood against the right of women to make reproductive choices and something needed to be done about them.

I didn’t like the idea of an American president identifying my morality as fanaticism and my beliefs as something to be squashed out. She’s all for women, she says. If the female babies being formed up to nine months could speak, they would implore her to let them live. Waddle 'n Go Penguin             (photo from Christian Book Distributor’s site)

In all reality, every person knows that if a fetus is left alone, it becomes a human being. To say that a fetus is just a blob or whatever ridiculous word they use to convince young women to abort the growing cells, everyone knows deep inside that the person unready to give birth chooses abortion to avoid the responsibilities and inconveniences of pregnancy and child-rearing. They lose sight of the joy of parenthood, or don’t comprehend it.

Years ago, I saw a woman speak on the 700 Club when Pat Robertson was still hosting the show. She had been raped and because of her beliefs, she kept the baby. She knew it would be hard, especially if the baby looked like the biological dad. She didn’t destroy the baby; it wasn’t the baby’s fault that the dad hurt women.

Some years later, the lady wanted to tell the world that having that baby was one of the best decisions she ever made in her life.

Hillary Clinton wanted to continue abortion under the guise of women’s rights. She wanted to continue with President Obama’s social programs. Americans wanted a change. It may be as simple as that, or it may be more far reaching. Proverbs 21:1, (KJV), The king’s heart is in the hand of the LORD, as the rivers of water: he turneth it whithersoever he will.

Proverbs 24:21, (KJV), My son, fear thou the LORD and the king: and meddle not with them that are given to change:

Lately, I’ve heard of three prophets that said that God told them that Donald Trump would be president of the United States of America. When I told my oldest son about it, he said something to the effect that Trump didn’t stand a chance. I said that this is what two prophets I’d heard said, and many people are praying for him to win. Then he said something like, “Mom, mom,” in a tired voice. So, I said, “Okay, we’ll see what happens.”

After the election, he texted me, “Not that I love Trump, but I’m happy I was wrong.”

I am an election worker and for the primary to choose who the Republican candidates would be, only about 70 people came out to vote. At the election, over 500 people came out to that one place to vote. I’ve heard that the primary election may be more important than the actual election, but not everyone understands that, I guess. So, other Republican contenders didn’t get their chance to run against Hillary. That’s the way things go.

Americans can get over their troubles if they want to, by getting out of their homes and getting to know each other. If they would turn off their electronics and interact and try to understand others and stop listening to hate mongers, they may find out that people are similar to one another even if they don’t always agree with each other, or have the same customs, or have the same skin tone.

1Peter 4:8, (ESV) Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins.

Anyone brought up in the Christian faith knows that all of mankind sins, according to Romans 3:23, and falls short of the glory of God. No one is perfect or ever will be perfect. The only perfect one was Jesus and that’s because He was God, the Son. This is why He became our Savior. God hates sin and what it does. He’s ready to punish us for behaving so abominably. Then Jesus in full agreement with God the Father and God the Holy Spirit, decided to make a way to save our sorry selves. He took on all the sins of the world. All of them. So we could love one another and be forgiven of our sins so one day we could enter heaven.

If Americans humble themselves and take up their Christian beliefs, those who were born into a Christian background, that is, and read the Bible and repent and follow Jesus’ commands to love God first and to love others as their selves, most of the chaos in this country would disappear.

Jesus invites all nations and all tribes to follow Him. He’s ready to love all and to forgive all because He created all. He loves every single person in the world, it says in John 3:16.

That is what I have found to be true in my life and in the lives of others. I have tested God as it says to do in the book of Malachi and found Him to be trustworthy. How about you? Have you ever asked God about Himself? He wants all in heaven with Him and contrary to lies, heaven is not a boring place. If God created the world and all that is in it, and heaven as well, [Col_1:16, (ESV) For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him,] how could it ever be boring?

The devil is a liar come to steal, kill and destroy, Jesus said in John 10:10 and Jesus came to give life and that abundantly. Ask Jesus to prove Himself, that’s my suggestion to you in these trying times.

May God bless you.

 

 

Music Impacts

When I was a young mom, I needed to drop something off at a friend’s house. When she opened the door, I handed in the package and left. I’d warned her I couldn’t linger. Later on I spoke to another young mom, she had a couple of teen age boys. I mentioned that when my friend opened her door, Christian music played in the background. It filled my heart and lifted my spirits – that short bit of lyrics and chords. She said, “And they say that they don’t listen to the words in music, and even if they do, those words don’t impact them. Huh!”

“Who’s that?”

“My kids.”

That made us think.

On Thursday night, a few of us continued watching Thelma Wells video presentation about not giving in… God wants us to win! She said if you read Zephaniah 3:17 in The Living Bible, it talks about how God’s joy increases when we worship Him. He rejoices over us.

Zeph. 3:17,18 (TLB) says, “For the Lord your God has arrived to live among you. He is a mighty Savior. He will give you victory. He will rejoice over you in great gladness; he will love you and not accuse you.” Is that a joyous choir I hear? No, it is the Lord himself exulting over you in happy song: “I have gathered your wounded and taken away your reproach…”

I’ve lost track of the mom with the teenage boys, but I look forward to seeing her for all eternity. Those teenage boys may have children of their own approaching their teen years or already there. Wow! And another bigger wow, our God rejoices over us. To me, that’s incredible. Mind boggling.

Unique

Image result for family

(from clipartpanda.com)

I love being a mom and a grandmother. My daughter and her new husband joined us for dinner tonight and I cooked a meal I used to cook often over the years. We sat and talked and listened to each other and then they needed to get home to their cat.

I spoke to my youngest son today about a car he’s in the process of buying. He’s waiting on the owner to get her title so they can finish the transaction. As he talked to me, I tried to comprehend something he was trying that’s new for him. I asked a few questions and then I asked him to let me know how it goes for him. I’m trying my hardest to let go of directing my children whom are now adults. They have the skills to navigate life.

My husband learned this years before I did, and once in a while he’d say to me, you don’t need to give them advice. They’re adults

It’s freeing for me and for them. If I give the wrong advice, I then feel guilty, especially if I pushed my thoughts on them and they acquiesced and then had to suffer the consequences.

So, one way I plan to continue to love being a mom and a grandmother is to continue to ask God for wisdom. Then I hope to relax and enjoy the younger ones when they find time to visit. Each one different from the other and valued.

 

Liar, Liar

I totally forgot I wrote about lying recently. The topic must have been formulating ideas in my subconscious because I wrote a blog on lying in Word to paste into WordPress tonight because my husband’s computer works better that way. Then I read my post because someone commented on it.

So, here it is: The television show “Everyone Loves Raymond” exaggerates human frailties and miscommunications just enough to make people laugh.

In one episode, after Raymond talked to his older brother Robert about the pitfalls of marriage when he was forced to stay home and wait for a curtain delivery, it influenced Robert’s thinking about committing to his girlfriend. Then Raymond told his wife he was just kidding when she confronted him about it. His parents were upset. He told his mom, “You know how I am, I joke around a lot.”

The more he protested, the more a childhood rhyme came to mind: “Liar, liar pants on fire…” Then something about them hanging on a telephone wire. It’s been a long time since I was a kid. 🙂

We took lying seriously when we were kids. Everybody lied, but usually it was a small thing and when you realized you lied, you went to the person and said you were sorry. You did your best not to lie. If kids found out you lied regularly and you never admitted it, then they didn’t trust you, and suddenly you weren’t invited to play games outside with the others. Maybe someone throws a birthday party and you’re the only one at home feeling left out. That’s how it was when I grew up.

Lots more interaction with parents mostly staying out of kids’ business. If I had a falling out with one of my friends, my mom would listen to me and then say, “Well, what do you want to do about it?”

I’d list my options and then she’d say, “If you were her, what would you want to happen?”

Then I’d go and think some more. I’d tell her. If it seemed like a good idea, she’d say that might work out. If she thought it was a lousy idea, she’d say, “Hmm, you really think that will help?”

I’d give my answer and then she’d say, “I hope you two can be friends again. You’ve been friends a long time.”

Then she’d leave me alone and let me work it out or let the relationship slide. I miss my mom.

She was easy going unless I pulled some stunt that really upset her. Then I’d hear about it and get punished for it. Consequences always caught up with me. I got my mouth washed out with soap one time, I either sassed her back or told a fib or used a swear word when young and not aware of the backlash or rebellious enough at the moment not to care.

She reminded me that “young ladies” do not behave that way. She was loved by many, even with her imperfections. She mothered every kid that came her way.

 

 

 

 

 

Family Matters to God

In the beginning God! According to Genesis one. I love reading Genesis because it talks about God speaking the world into existence. It talks about making mankind in Our image. It talks about God forming man out of the dust of the ground and breathing life into him.

Then after all the animals are made, which inspires me with God’s incredible creativity, Adam tells God there is no one suitable for him out of all the animal world.

So God puts Adam into a deep sleep and takes his rib out. He fashions a woman around the rib.

Adam and Eve are the first recorded couple and when they have children, the first family shows up on planet earth.

Image result for images of families togetherphoto from preksweetpeas.blogspot.com

I miss my mother. She went to the other side over a decade ago. Occasionally I say to God, “Please say hi to my mother for me.” 🙂

I remember when she was in her seventies she would say she missed her mother. I told her that her mom had been gone for many years at that point, and she looked at me with her big brown eyes and said, “It doesn’t matter how long she’s been gone, I still miss her.”

I’m beginning to understand. What I find myself doing is quoting her. When there’s a disagreement between loved ones, I say, “In ten years how important will this be? Will we even remember this moment?”

Other times she would say, “This, too, shall pass.”

I asked her in her 70’s what words of wisdom she may give me? She thought for a moment, “Be prepared for change. Change comes whether you’re ready for it or not.”

I’ve seen lots of changes over my life time. When I was a little girl living on a city street of a hundred houses, I only knew of three families that experienced divorce. I knew almost everyone on that street. Divorce was totally uncommon.

There was no internet when I was young. People interacted with each other face to face and sometimes on the telephone. My dad would yell at me to get off the phone, especially if it was long distance. The phone company charged for long distance by the minute. We shared our phone line with three other families. It was called a party-line. We could listen in to other people talking, but we respected their privacy.

Some changes are good, some have proven not to be so good. Family was God’s idea. A strong family gives children security. Women, too. I know men get hurt deeply when a woman they married cheats on them, from people I’ve talked to. Family is an integral part of society and when it functions well, society functions well.

Food for thought.

Well, I guess I’ll get going. I’ve got my computer back for a day before I mail it off to another area of my world. Think I’ll do some creative writing. 🙂

 

Easter – Resurrection Sunday

Hi! I wrote this for our church’s April newsletter. I’m copying it here because I love what Jesus did for everyone and because I’ve had a stomach bug three times in March and so I’m catching up on things as I carry on in life. God bless. I intend to share comments made on the blog on how to find the “right” spouse later this week.

Consider the love of God, which never fails. Romans 8:38,39 (KJV) says: “For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

I remember going to Catholic Church as a young girl seeing the Stations of the Cross, as they were called, miniature three dimensional carvings of the steps Jesus took on the way to the crucifixion – ending with His dead body being held by loved ones as they began to place him in a stone hewn resting place.

As I got older, on Good Friday at noon, I read the Bible’s account of Jesus’ betrayal and then His journey to the cross and to His death to my Mom. It was our tradition. I wasn’t born again yet, but the sacrifice Jesus made for my sin touched me deeply.

Resurrection means to be revived from death. After hearing that Jesus’ choice to endure the suffering and agony at Golgotha would enable me to be in a right relationship with God, I eventually understood salvation and asked Jesus to be my Lord and Savior!

He rose from the dead after three days in the tomb. My flesh came alive to the Spirit of God after many years of hearing His Word and many months of listening to an evangelical friend that didn’t give up on me. She prayed for me, she gave me nuggets of truth five school days of the week.

There are so many lies about Jesus – He’s not God, He’s just a prophet, a child of God like we are. Satan loves to deceive people; ensnare people with hurts, offenses, addictions; kill people with lies about suicide offering a peaceful alternative to this world.

Jesus said in John 10:10 (KJV), “The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it abundantly.”

It’s never too late to experience God’s love, His deliverance, His protection, His provision, His still small voice welcoming you to get to know Him better.

September – a Month of Beginnings

I have a five-year old grandson that lives too far away from me. He started kindergarten this Fall. A new beginning for him and his mom. He’s her oldest.

I found an empty DEMO Exercise sheet of paper that asks you to rate everything you want to be, to do, and to have with boxes for a rating from one to ten. There is a spot to rate the benefit to myself and to others, again with a one to ten rating. The items that add up to forty are the ones you’re supposed to do first. Ten for desire, ten for enjoy, ten for benefiting me, ten for benefiting others. The problem is, I tend to have more than one forty, maybe ten or twelve of them. So then I rank them by alphabet with a number to follow. A1 is my first priority, A2 second, etc. I go as far as D and then I quit. So if I’m on a to-be item number twenty-eight and realize that it’s really important to me, I’ll make it an A1.5. It can get confusing. 🙂

The good news is that it works for me. I may not stick to it perfectly. I cleaned my refrigerator the other day, which was my A1. Yes, because I’d been avoiding that chore. The next thing I know I’m mopping floors, which was an A7, because all my life, when I clean the refrigerator, I mop the floors because I always spill water or get crumbs on the floor. I’m happy to note that blog two times a week is an A2.5, and so far so good, I think.

My husband has a hard time with goal setting he tells me. My DEMO Exercise list has thirty-six items on it and covers all of my life, although I think I missed one. Something is niggling at the back of my mind. I include vacation ideas, writing ideas, hobbies, etc. I notice I’m getting more done than I have in a while, because I forgot about these DEMO sheets, which are no longer being manufactured in Rochester, NY. Probably because everyone uses far less paper. Now that I remembered, I decided to fill one out and voila’, it’s helping me focus. Yay! So I decided to make my version on my computer.

I missed out on some fun on Saturday because I was mopping feverishly, trying to be on time. I told one of the ladies that I may not make it because I had a long list of things to do. A few of my friends never would have made plans in the first place if the house needed attention. We’re such individuals, aren’t we? This mopping instead of joining friends is a real answer to prayer. I have too many opportunities to visit with people or to set my own hours, and if I always choose the fun, things get left undone. Then I suffer, my husband suffers, and it impacts others. I’m only there half-halfheartedly, with a weight around my spirit.   It’s taken me a long time to realize this; sad but true. So September is an eye opener for me practically speaking and spiritually. I feel God wants me to take some time and sit quietly with Him to do some introspection. He wants me to make some changes for good that may not be easy, but definitely worth the effort. Whatever I do that lines up with His word always enriches my life. It may stretch me like crazy, but if I feel He’s telling me to do something, He always helps me.

When my husband became a pastor and we moved to another town, a friend gave me a plaque that reads, “The Grace of God will enable you to be what He made you to be and do what He has called you to do.” There’s a Scripture quotation on the bottom, “The one who calls you is faithful and he will do it.” 1 Thessalonians 5:24

Do you sense God calling you to step out of your comfort zone? How are you doing with that? Has September brought you beginnings you want to write about?

Gathering III

When I went to this house full of people of mostly acquaintances, and I’d heard the prophetic giftings flow like water out of a broken pipe, on the ride over I told the Lord I didn’t want a Word from anybody. One Word for my daughter talked about her being like a daughter to a lady and the lady being like a mom to her. That they would be as if they were joined at the hip. I saw my daughter searching for eye contact with me. Later, she said, “Mom, were you okay with that prophesy about me being a daughter to someone else?”

I told her I was okay with it, because I know I’m not perfect and maybe this person could fill in some of the gaps where I fell short. Was it easy to hear? Not necessarily. Was it easy to respond that way? Easier than it would have been some years back. I thought of the Scripture that says if we follow Jesus and lose our parents or siblings because of persecution, God will give us many more. That was a paraphrase, and I have not rejected her for her faith, but it seemed to fit my thinking. I’m secure enough in our relationship to share her.

So, as I soaked in the presence of God as we worshiped the Lord, I heard Him say, “Cast all your cares upon Me for I care for you.”

Then later I was thinking, Lord I wouldn’t mind a Word after all. Then, “Am I not enough for you?”

This is the second time in a month’s time that I’ve heard that phrase. I was fretting because my husband lost some money. “Am I not enough for you?”

“Yes, Lord, You are enough,” I told Him.

I meant it then, and I meant it at the gathering. It gives me peace to know He’ll be there in relationship and in provision. To God be the glory.