Archive | January 2016

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Understanding Submission

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No, this is NOT Fifty Shades of Grey.  Not even close!  Although it makes for great adult entertainment.  I doubt it’s what God had in mind when he created submission before the foundations of the world.  Of course the world has their own spin on the topic hence the movie “Fifty shades Of Grey”. In this movie the man’s idea of a woman submitting to him means you will do what I say.  I will handcuff, whip, beat, and have sex with you at my will.  And you will be available on the weekends, and sign a contract to that effect.  A real romantic to say the least.

So if  you’ve been getting your information on submission from the “Fifty shades of Grey” trilogy books and the movie, all you have is a secular, sinful twist on an ancient principal meant to be practiced within the confines of marriage.  Romans 12:2, reminds “Be not conformed to this world be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind…”  I know some women are thinking “I didn’t agree with everything in the movie ,but I do enjoy a little playful spanking from my husband once in a while.”
You’re not alone, and there’s nothing wrong with that between a husband and a wife.  Although that is a whole other post wherein we can discuss alternative lovemaking options that can be fun without feeling like your bucking the traditional.  Also, it’s okay between a husband and wife to explore non-traditional love-making options as long as you’re not abusing one another.  This is a topic we will discuss in the coming month.  February will be the month of “Love”, and we’ll explore lots of interesting topics.  So keep an eye out for that.

We’re going to renew our minds today concerning Biblical Submission and what it means for you as a wife.  For you single readers, take heart and take notes.  Your minds need to be reconditioned to what it really means to be a submitted wife.  Your destination may well be the Godly institution of marriage. This post is SCW’s prelude post to February firsts “Love Workshop Series” beginning Monday.  Since there’s been so much interest surrounding the “Submission” post, I thought that we should start with “Submission”.  Explore it’s meaning and start there.  “A submitted wife is a happy wife”  Enjoy.

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In this post we’ll Explore:

  • What is biblical Submission?
  • Which scriptures support biblical submission?
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  • Is there anytime that I should not submit to my husband?
  • What is the purpose of it?
  • Why do we struggle with it?
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  • What are the common misconceptions and lies surrounding it?
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  • What are the benefits and detriments to Biblical submission in marriage?

What does Submission mean?  The natural definition of submission means:  To yield to another s  desire’s without resistance.  Submission to another s wishes is an attitude of the heart done willingly. While surrendering is yielding by being forced to do so.

What is Biblical Submission?  It is our submission unto the Lord.  Our first submission should be unto the lord.  We are daughters of the most high God first, and wives second.  Our second submission is to our husbands.  As wives when we make the choice to Biblically submit to our husbands, we are doing so because we are following God’s plan for our life.  Not because we are forced to do so.  Understand that the head of every man is Christ.  For our husbands, he is first a son of God and his first submission is to the Lord, and his second submission to his wife.  The husband and the wife are to submit to each other as under God’s authority.

What is the purpose of Biblical submission?  The purpose is God’s order.  There is order in God’s kingdom and it goes like this: Christ is the head of the church, and He is the savior of the body, therefore the church is subject unto Christ and Christ unto God.  God is the head of man.  The head of a woman is her husband.

Is there any time when I should Not submit to my husband?  God never forces someone to follow him nor does he want us to be forced to follow another human being.  He wants us to lovingly submit to Him and each other.  Because of the evil in some men’s hearts, (a wannabe macho meat-head), a woman under this man’s authority can be abused.  Because a small-minded man will abuse this principal and be abusive.  Within this kind of relationship a submissive woman can be asked to do things that they do not believe is right.  The Biblical perimeter reveals to us how far a woman should go.  She needs to ask herself if what he’s asking me to do lines up with God’s Word?  A woman should never submit to anything that does not line up with God’s Word.  A WIFE IS NOT TO SUBMIT TO HER HUSBAND’S SIN.  In essence she is sinning against the Lord.  Pray about it and God will deal with your husband.

Why do we struggle with submission?  The woman’s struggle with submission is what she’s been taught through secular misinformation.  That the woman is essentially the man’s slave.  Who wants to be a slave.  This is not Biblical submission.

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What are the misconceptions and lies surrounding Submission?

  • A woman who submits to her husband is a doormat

SCW (response):  These are all lies straight from the pit of hell.  Especially this one.  A more informed person knows that the majority of submissive wives are very strong, educated , capable women like myself.  I had to learn how to be submissive and what it meant because it was something that didn’t come natural to me.  I love the definition of a submissive woman as “Strength under control.”

  • She can’t think for herself

SCW:  Any educated woman is capable of thinking for herself, and even if she isn’t educated she has common sense.  I was so used to handling ALL the business of life on my own and was happy to do it.  I was blessed to have a Godly man placed in my life by God to help me make decisions, help me to figure things out.  He shows me a different way, a different perspective to lift me up when I’m feeling down, and to be my partner in life.  I want you to understand this: Your power is in your Partners!  God created Partnership.  Jesus taught this right off the cuff the first thing he did was select His partners (the Disciples).  No man is an island.  I had help!  There were people who helped me along the way!  To God be the Glory!

  • She needs a man to tell her what to do

SCW:  Ecclesiastes 4:9 Two are better than one.  God did not intend for man to be alone.  He could not produce without her.  And she could not produce without him.

  • She is weak with a docile personality

SCW:  The world would have you to think that a woman has to be weak to follow her husband’s God-given authority.  However, God confirms his will in His Word.  The enemy is the father of lies, John 8:44

  • She’s viewed as a slave and not equal to her husband

SCW:  They are one in God’s eyes.  A man will leave his father and mother and cleave unto his wife and the two shall become one flesh.

  • She blindly follows her husband without asking any questions.

SCW:   A wife has to ask herself is the thing my husband is asking me to do honoring to God or is it contrary to the Word of God?  And if it is contrary to God’s will, a woman is not expected to follow her husband’s sin.

  • She’s not allowed to talk back to her husband if she disagrees with something

SCW:  Ephesians 4:15,  “Speak the truth in Love”

 

What are the scriptures that support submission?

Ephesians 5:20-25,  Giving thanks always in everything to God the father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ.  Wives submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord.  For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is head of the church.  His body, and is himself its savior.  Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to her husband.

James 4:7,  Submit yourselves therefore to God.  Resist the devil and he will flee from you.

Romans 13:1,  Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers.  For there is no power than of God. The powers that be are ordained of God.

Ephesians 5:21,  Submitting yourselves to one another in the fear of God

What are the benefits and detriments of  practicing submission? or Not practicing it?

Benefits:

  • You are honoring God by submitting to Him and His Word

  • You are giving honor and respect to your husband when you submit to him.  A man needs to feel respect from his wife.  This makes him feel loved.  When he feels respected it makes it easier for him to pour out his love on you.

  •  Your marriage is the type of love God has for his children.  Sacrificial love.  Your selfless loving marriage is like a beacon of light in a dark world.
  •  You will have harmony in your home.

  •  Your children will feel secure and loved when the atmosphere of the home is filled with peace and joy.

  •  Your Christ centered marriage will ultimately bring glory to God

  •  This path will lead you closer to Christ as you walk in the spirit.

The Detriments of not following God’s Word

As wives if we are constantly seeking  to have our own way in marriage, then the following can take place.

Detriments:

  • We are disobeying God and out of His will for our lives 
  • Bitterness 
  • Anger 
  • Possible divorce and extra marital affairs 
  • Strife in the home 
  • Children not following the Lord 
  • Children choosing the wrong spouse, emulating the same behavior modeled by their parents. 
  • Un-forgiveness

Our walk with God will suffer because our self-centered ways will draw us away from him.

When we live to please ourselves and have no order, no rules, no consideration, no respect or love for one another we live in chaos.  The world we live in is a pretty good example of this type of lifestyle right now.  Everyone for himself.  A me, me, me,  kind of attitude.  A self-centered woman does not represent our Savior in any way shape or form.  When we bring this approach into our marriage we are headed for disaster.  2 Timothy 3:2,  “In the last days people will become lovers of themselves.”  We definitely see that now.  I heard about a girl who posted over a thousand selfies on Facebook.  Psalms 86:11,  “Teach me your ways O lord and I will walk in your truth. Give me an undivided heart that I may fear your name.”

 

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We need to understand the proper role of submission in marriage so that our homes are harmonious and free of contention.  Love should be the rule in our homes.  Not only in our homes but in our church family as well.

 

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5 Practical Ways a Wife can submit to your Husband

  1. Dispense with those flesh filled tendencies to be quarrelsome!  (you don’t have to have the last word, you don’t have to win every argument).  You can not get away from these flesh filled tendencies unless you are walking in the Spirit.  Dying to the desires of the flesh Galatians 5:16, God reminds us not to be a quarrelsome wife.  Proverbs 25:24, “Better to live on the corner of a roof than share a house with a quarrelsome wife.”  Proverbs 27:15,  “A quarrelsome wife is like a constant dripping on a rainy day.” (Even God doesn’t want to hear it.)  Proverbs 14:1,  “The wise woman builds her house, but with her own hands the foolish one tears her’s  down.”


  2.  Always be publicly supportive of him.  Never tear him down in front of anyone or at all. Always build him up.  The Bible says we are to use our mouths for edifying.  Romans 14:19,  “Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and edification”  NIV.  (I think this is my new favorite verse)  New living translation Romans 14:19, “So then let us aim for harmony in the church” (Take out church and put home. That’s the first place you should maintain peace.)  And try to build each other up.

  3.  Support his decisions as leader of the household.  A woman should teach her children to respect his authority.  An intelligent man appreciates and is not intimidated by a woman who has a mind.  Discuss the issues, pray about them, hear your partners out.  But women know that the final decision as leader is his, and you have to be okay with that. (husbands choose wisely!)  I wouldn’t worry about this one too much, every smart man knows a happy wife, happy life right!  (I’m just having too much fun today.)

  4.  Make it a practice to think of ways to enhance his life throughout.  What can I do to make it a better day for my spouse?

  5. Always give him the utmost respect.  Honor him.  No one should praise him more than you.  You should be his biggest cheerleader.  After all you’re on the same team right?  But he’s the captain!  The captain always wants the best cheerleader and every girl wants the captain!

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Building Wealth while sticking to your Budget

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5 Ways to Build Wealth while sticking to your Budget

So your finally at a place where you want to start planning for a better future?  That means you’re probably looking for ways to start building wealth, but you still may be living on a budget.  Don’t worry because there art lots of ways to continue building your future wealth while you stick to your budget.  In fact sticking to your budget is probably the first step in building your wealth.   As you make those important financial plans, here are a few tips to help you get started.

  1. Track Your Spending. The first step in planning for a great financial future is to cut cost now, so you can save money long-term.  Start by tracking your spending for a month.  Write down everything you buy and start categorizing it into the right areas.  Pretty soon you’ll have significant  insight as to where your money goes and how you can cut back.

  2. Learn to Negotiate – Most wealthy people know how to negotiate so be willing to learn about this very important skill.  Watch videos online of professional negotiators.  Most credit card companies will let you negotiate your interest rates.  You can also call your cell phone, cable and internet providers to negotiate for a lower monthly bill.  In most cases all it takes is a phone call to save hundreds of dollars monthly.  The motivation for them is they would rather keep your business.

  3. Get a cushion.  As you start saving, your first goal should be an emergency fund.  The goal is to have three to six months worth of living expenses available in case of emergency.

  4. Maximize your matching.  If your one of the lucky people who work for a company that matches your 401 K and you’re not taking advantage of it you’re literally throwing away money. Some employers will match up to 100% of their employees contributions.  So make sure to contribute as much as you can.  Even if you can only spare a few dollars each paycheck.

  5. Time to Invest.  As you start to put away and keep reducing your expenditures, you’ll find that you are finally able to invest some of your savings.  This is where you definitely want to seek the advice of a professional.  An investment counselor, or wealth management company are good places to start.

 

Smart and biblical tip of the day:  Sow.  The first 10% is your tithe.

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  • What are your financial goals this year?  My goal is to save at least $2,000 this year and pay off credit card debt.
  • What are your personal priorities in 2016?  Example: I have kids graduating this year
  • Where did you slip last year?  Last year I made the mistake of……….. (you fill in the blank) This year I can avoid that same mistake if I ….. (fill in blank)
  • How much can you save each month?   Example: I can save $200 per month.
  • Where in my budget  can I cut back?  For example:  Maybe you can cut back on cable and do a Netflix subscription.
  • Where would you like to be financially 5 years from now?  In five years we’d like to purchase a new home.  Or have our student loans paid off.
  • How can I achieve my goals without getting budget burnout?  You have to treat yourself along the way.  You cut out eating out and Starbucks everyday.  But you can treat yourself to a latte once a week..

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3 John 1:2  “Beloved I wish above all things that you prosper and be in health even as thy soul prospers.”

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Maintaining a Happy Marriage after Kids

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So What can you do to ensure that you keep the magic well and truly alive in your relationship after having children?  We will explore some tips as well as tips from experienced moms.

  1. Make Mommy Daddy time a priority. Never stop dating.  A date with your spouse doesn’t always mean something fancy, it could be as simple as time alone, without the kids.  Even if it’s just a walk to the coffee shop.  Share a cup of coffee and reconnect after a long day.

  2. Stay Close.  Make sure to sit next to each other as much as possible.  Hold hands every chance we get.  Smile at each other, a wink, a loving gesture like a shoulder rub.  Kind words spoken softly.  A quick text in the middle of the day to say I love you, I miss you or something racier.  “I want to spend my life being as loving toward my husband as I can.”


  3. Find an activity you can do together without the kids.  Whatever the two of you enjoy.

  4. Gross out your kids!  ( nothing graphic of course)  Don’t hold back physical affection just because the kiddos are around.  It’s okay to kiss and love on your partner.  Not to put on a show, but to show some love toward your spouse and keep a flirty attitude with your husband.  It’s healthy for the kids to see their parents in a loving relationship as opposed to screaming at each other and being unkind, which is of course unhealthy.

  5. Turn off the electronics in the bedroom.  This is your private place, for love and intimacy. Need I say more?  Think twice about the wisdom of having a TV in the bedroom

  6. Spoil your spouse not your kids.  Strong marriages make strong families.  My baby spoils me.

  7. Make time to transition from mom mode to wife mode after the kids are in bed.  Dealing with diapers and crying all day need to transition take a hot bath or shower let the stress of the day melt away.  Maybe a glass of wine and now you’re not a mom, you’re a wife and it’s time to spend time with your husband.  Related to this, give your husband the same transition time.  Don’t greet him at the door with the problems of the day.  Give him time to relax.

  8. Thoughtfulness – Make it a practice to do at least one thoughtful thing for your spouse every single day.  A love note in his briefcase or lunch.  Perhaps a sweet phone call during his work day, just because.

  9. Right Priorities – Mom, you need to remember that before you were a mom you were first a wife.  You are still a wife first and a mom second.  Keep these priorities straight and your spouse is less likely to feel second to the children and neglected.

  10. Spontaneity – Who says you can’t do weekend getaways, without the kids?  I know this is going to be tougher for some of you than others.  But most have a trusted relative or close family friend that would love to give you both a weekend break.  Put effort into the spontaneous things you may have taken for granted before kids.

    We did a post a in 2015 on  keeping the passion alive after kids.  Moms wrote in  about their tips for keeping their marriage passionate with kids.  Below are their responses.

  11. Elizabeth A. from  Trenton New jersey wrote – Enforce strict bedtime for kids to have some adult time at the end of the day.

  12. Kathy R. from Lansing Michigan writes – Get a lock on your bedroom door.  Then actually make the time to lock the door.  So Simple. (Kathy celebrated their 21st wedding anniversary in 2015)

  13. Vicky W. from Portland Oregon writes – that her marriage is hotter than ever due to sexting, yup sexting that’s what works for them.  Sexting is not just for teenagers.  It allows couples to flirt.  I think too often things we did in our courting stage to show our partner that we desire them falls by the wayside once the kids arrive.  Don’t stop doing the little things.

  14. Darcy L. from Paris France writes – that they do babysitting swaps with other trusted  couples with kids around the same age”.  You babysit my kids tonight and we’ll babysit your kids tomorrow night”  I think this is a great gig if you can get it.  I think it’s an excellent idea for giving couples alone time together and even better there’s another couple that feel your pain and are willing to help out in exchange for you helping them.  This is also good for the kids to be in a different environment.  It teaches them that you’re not going to be joined at the hip of mommy and daddy every single day and every hour.  If they are toddlers soon they will be in school away from mom and dad for a period of time.

  15. Tamara D. from Austin Texas writes – she keeps passion alive in her marriage by making the kids sleep in their own beds!  This is tough for some moms they feel guilty.  Don’t let yourself fall into a false sense of guilt.  This is Mommy and daddy time and needs to be enforced.  Baby monitors are great for keeping an eye out for the kids or in this case an ear.  You cannot and should not let the kids dominate every aspect of your life.  Also you risk alienating your husband, which you want to avoid at all cost.

    SCW:  We want to thank the moms for their candid responses.

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Showing Respect to your Spouse

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A man needs his wife’s respect and admiration.  He thrives, and grows toward Godliness when this need is fulfilled.  The Apostle Paul says, “A wife must respect her husband” Ephesians 5:33.  God doesn’t command a wife to “feel” respect toward her husband.  She is to be respectful.  Her responsibility is to obey God not her feelings.  Easier said then done especially in the heat of an argument.  So what are some ways you can obey this command and show respect to your husband?

10 Ways to Show Respect to your Husband

  1. Pray for him.  Something happens to us when we pray for people.  Our hearts soften, our empathy and compassion increase, and we gain spiritual insight as to what the other person is going through.  Ask God to give him Wisdom, Protection, guidance, knowledge, spiritual maturity, success, courage.  Thank the Lord for giving you this man.  Pray for your attitude to change rather than looking at your husband’s flaws.  Ask God to reveal his strengths and yours.  Seek God’s answers to your prayers.

  2. Make a list of your husband’s good qualities.  When routine takes over, it’s good to remind ourselves once in a while why we fell in love in the first place.  Reflect on your spouse’s character. What are the qualities you love about him?  What do you admire about him?  Review and add to your list regularly.

  3.  Tell your husband what you  appreciate about him.  It’s really nice hearing a number of specific things your spouse likes about you.  By telling him what you love about him you communicate your gratitude and respect.

  4.  Listen to him.  When your husband wants to talk give him your full attention.  Put down the phone, computer, remote and listen.  When you ask him a question, wait for an answer.  Good communication skills are universal, but should especially be demonstrated in your home.

  5. Never put him down in front of other people.  Especially the children.  You and your husband are on the same team, partners, cheerleaders for each other.  Find something good to say about him.  Even brag a little.  Putting him down is damaging to his feelings and death to your relationship.  Make it your business to build him up honestly.  Guess I should also point out, there are other women who ‘d love to have him.

  6.  Make Love.  By responding to his advances and initiating advances of your own.  You are communicating your loyalty to him, your attraction and selfless love for him.  Stay connected.

  7.  Involve him in your life.  You each have your own routines, your own hobbies and your own friends.  So make it a habit to include him in your activities and talk to him about what’s going on.  By including him in your everyday you’re showing him how much his presence brightens your life.

  8. Believe your Husband has good intentions.  If you find yourself thinking negative thoughts about your husband, stop and choose to think of something else, things from your positive quality list.  A key to making your relationship feel safe and secure is to believe your spouse has good intentions even when he messes up, you can still believe he didn’t mean to.  Nobody’s perfect including you.

  9.  Try to put a positive spin on things that annoy you.  When you change the way you look at things, things begin to change.  All a matter of perspective.

  10.  In the midst of  a heated argument, walk away.  Get some distance before you say something that you don’t mean.  Better to walk away an regain your composure rather than making things worse.  Having time to myself to calm down is what works for me.  When cooler heads prevail the conversation will go much smoother.

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1O Mistakes that Sabotage your Relationship

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Assembled below are some non gender specific ways that couples sabotage their relationships.  Hopefully this list will spark some a -ha moments, great conversations and behavioral changes.

10 Warning Signs Couples need  to be Aware of

  1. You focus more on what’s wrong rather than what’s right.  No person or situation is ever, ever, ever going to be perfect.  Focus on the good things about your partner.  Negotiate issues to bring about a win-win situation.  Example: If your husband cooks the meal that night, you do the clean up.  Or while you cook your husband can help with homework.

  2. You don’t create a safe place for your partner to speak openly and just be.  Sometimes we just want to vent.  We can’t always say exactly what’s on our mind while at work.  However there needs to be an outlet where you or your partner can let off a little steam without comment, or being judged.

  3. Putting other people and things ahead of your relationship.  Your relationship is your priority second only to God.  God first.  Self.  Partner.  Family.  The marital relationship comes even before the children.  If you do not have a healthy relationship you have nothing for your children to model after.  A relationship like all living things needs on going nourishment.  Give it a place of value in a date night and or a bedtime ritual.  This isn’t the time to complain or vent it’s time to connect.

  4. You expect your partner to think and act exactly like you.  You need someone different from you.  Example:  I f you are irrational and tend to fly off the handle you need some one who is calm and rational.

  5. You don’t know or fulfill one another’s love strategy.  This can best be described as a person’s love language.  Do you know your partners love language?  See SCW’s “Five Love Languages” post. The universal love languages are: Words of affirmation,  Acts of service, Physical touch,

  6. Taking things too personally.  When you take things too personally and get your feelings hurt too easily it closes off communication.  Look at your partners wants and needs objectively.  Become good at problem solving.

  7. You’d rather be right than in love.  Whenever possible, give people a graceful way to save face when they screw up.  Have the humility to apologize quickly if you’re the one who screws up.  Both habits will go a very long way to creating and sustaining the love you deserve.  I’m not suggesting you be a doormat and allow outrageous behavior to go unchallenged.  I’m simply saying don’t sweat the small stuff and choose to stand your ground on the bigger stuff that may be a deal breaker.

  8. Consistency of keeping up attraction.  Both partners need to work at this.  It’s no one person’s sole job.  Over time consistency can wain.  What you feed will thrive what you starve will die.  True love is far too precious to throw away without first giving it everything you’ve got.

  9. Loving your partner through different stages of  their evolution.  People change.  Hopefully for the better.  The beautiful thing about relationships at their best is that it’s within the bonds of true intimacy where individuals are free to be completely self expressed, accepted and protected. Change is inevitable.  You can either grow apart slowly over time or you can honor one another’s journey.  Find the common ground and do your best to expand it whenever possible.

  10. Double Standards – It’s easy to see the faults in other people and even our partners but difficult sometimes to see our selves.  Luke 6:42  “How can you say to your brother, brother let me take the speck out of your eye but fail to see the speck in our own.”

Smart tip of the day:  It’s not about never having issues it’s how you deal with the issues that you have that builds a better relationship.

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