November 21, 2011
Uncontrolled anger can destroy your marriage! All of us get angry when we believe that we have been wronged. Feeling angry is not sinful, but how you respond may be. In Ephesians 4:26 we read: “Being angry, sin not, don’t let the sun go down on your anger.” We are responsible for controlling our behavior. The husband or wife who lashes out with harsh words is sinning.
The first step in learning to control your anger is to restrain your immediate response. Count to 100 before you do anything. Take a walk around the block. Go water your flowers. Do something to stop the flow of hurtful words or abusive behavior. Take a ‘time out’ and you’re less likely to sin.
October 31, 2011
Do you have a daily quiet time with God? How about a daily quite time with your spouse? Most of us believe that a daily quiet time with God keeps our relationship with God vital and genuine. I believe the same is true in the marital relationship. Couples who have an intimate marriage are those who stay connected. A daily sharing time with your spouse is an easy way to make that connection.
So, what do you talk about in this ‘daily sharing time?” Here’s my suggestion: tell each other three things that happened in your life today and how you feel about them. If three seems overwhelming, then start with two or one, but set a time to share. Life is lived one day at a time and must be shared the same way.
October 24, 2011
We hear a lot about dysfunctional families but what about functional families? What does a healthy family look like? The most fundamental sign of a healthy family is an attitude of service. The husband serves the wife and she serves him. Together they serve the children and children learn to serve parents. Does that sound like your family?
You don’t have to possess warm feelings for your husband in order to serve him but you do need an intimate relationship with God. God does not want you to serve out of duty but out of a heart that has been touched by His love. Through you, God’s love flows to bless your family. It all begins with a prayer, “Father, give me the attitude of Christ toward my family.”
October 19, 2011
I remember many years ago when I answered the question: “Wilt thou have this woman to be thy wedded wife? To love her in sickness and in health, in poverty and in wealth, for better or for worse, so long as you both shall live?” I responded, “I will.” Little did I know, as a young man, what I was promising.
In the early years of our marriage there was sickness and poverty, and yes, it got worse. It took me a while to discover that marriage is about giving, not getting. I asked God to give me the attitude of Christ toward my wife. He answered that prayer and taught me how to serve her. It wasn’t long until she reciprocated and ‘yes’ things got ‘better’, much better.
October 18, 2011
In a culture which worships at the altar of sex, the Christian must take care not to over-react and view sex as something sinful. The truth is that Hollywood did not invent sex. A holy God, totally separate from sin, made us sexual beings. We must not relinquish the sanctity of sex because some have exploited it.
Sex is not the trademark of the world; it bears the personal label, “made by God.” However, we must be quick to say that God gave us the ‘owners manual’. In God’s plan sex is reserved for marriage. Within marriage, sex bonds us together, body, soul and spirit.
July 22, 2011
In the midst of hard financial times, one wife said, “What we have discovered is that we can live on a whole lot less than we thought. It has really brought our family closer together. Now that we no longer have cable TV we are pulling out the games we used to play when the children were young. We’re all having great fun and we are building memories.”
This family demonstrates the biblical truth that life’s meaning is not found in possessions, but in relationships. It is my prayer that in the economic hard times we are having, people will turn again to God and to family. Then, with true satisfaction, we will reach out to minister to those who have even less than we. Serving others in the name of Jesus is the role of the Christian.
July 21, 2011
Everyone admits that these are troubled financial times. Many families are living under financial pressure. But for the Christian, money is to be our servant, not our security blanket. For many non-Christians, money is a sign of success. All of their decisions are made in response to the question, “What offers the greatest financial advantage?”
For the Christian, some things are more important than money. We have all learned that money can be ‘here today and gone tomorrow.’ But God is always ‘here’. He is never ‘gone’ today or tomorrow. So in hard times, we put our hand in His, and use whatever money we have to feed or families and help others. Our security is not in money, but in a loving and faithful God.
July 20, 2011
One of the benefits of trusting in God is that we don’t have to worry about money. Jesus made this abundantly clear when He said, “Do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear….Your heavenly Father knows what you need. But seek first His kingdom…and all these things will be given to you as well.”
God is committed to caring for His children. This does not mean that we are to sit back and expect God to do everything. There is an old German proverb that says, “God gives the birds their food, but he does not throw it into their nests.” We are to use the mind and body He has given us, but we are to do it in co-operation with Him. Our trust in is Him, not in self-effort and certainly not in government.
July 19, 2011
Have you ever considered making God your business partner? Many couples have made foolish financial decisions because they left God out of the process. Those who seek God’s wisdom and make financial decisions based on principles revealed in Scripture will save themselves much heartache. We are at our best when we cooperate with God.
R.G. LeTourneau, one of the industrial giants of the last generation said that when he made God his business partner, he went from a struggling business to a highly successful business. The scriptures are clear: “If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all who ask.” Let prayer be your first order of business, not the last resort.
July 18, 2011
In today’s economy, it might be helpful to remember the words that are printed on our money, “In God we trust!” No matter how much money we have, it is still “in God we trust.” To trust in money to give life meaning is to trust in an idol.
C.S. Lewis said, “One of the dangers of having a lot of money is that you may be quite satisfied with the kinds of happiness money can give and so fail to realize your need for God. If everything seems to come simply by signing checks, you may forget that you are at every moment totally dependent on God.” Life’s meaning is not found in possessions, but in relationship – first with God, then with family and friends. “In God we trust.”