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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Affirmation

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Seducing Your Husband

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When we’re married if not nurtured properly our daily routines can bring monotony to our lives.  A relationship is a seed to a garden, it needs to be taken care of daily.  Seduction is nothing more than demonstrating your love and devotion to your partner.  It is very important that the both of you feel this with every gesture.  The woman is not solely responsible for this, the man is also responsible.  Yet you as the woman can show him the way.  I mean who doesn’t like to be loved pampered and taken care of.  To maintain this love, this seduction, it is required to make sacrifices and actually try.

To Seduce requires action.

5 Ways to Seduce your Husband Daily

  1.  Don’t limit maintaining your appearance just to going out, do your hair and makeup, use perfume, even if you’re just going to stay home and watch a movie.  You can be comfortable and feminine in silk lounging pajamas.

2.  Set your Atmosphere.  Set a warm and inviting atmosphere inside your home, but more importantly inside your bedroom.  It should be neat, clean, warm and inviting.  Turn the lights down low put on some soft music.  You don’t have to be planning for sex necessarily, you just want your husband to be able to unplug and be at peace.  You know the expression, “at the end of the day”?  Well it’s the end of the day make it good.

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3   Send him sexy texts.

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4. Cook his favorite meal.  Even if you can’t cook, look it up on the internet they will give you a video and step by step instructions.

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5. Closeness.  Physical touch can go along way in seducing your husband.  Hug him kiss him,  smile at him, stroke him, massage him, just be close without conversation just envelope yourselves in the moment.

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Buying your first Home

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You’ve decided to go for it!  Buying a home can be thrilling and nerve-racking all at the same time, especially for a first time home buyer.  It’s difficult to know exactly what to expect  as each situation is unique.  However there is some basic groundwork if you will, that needs to be laid.  Hopefully this will take out some of the guesswork to get you started in the process of buying your first home.

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5 Tips for First Time Home Buyers

  1. Check your credit.  The home buyers credit is among the most important factors when it comes to qualifying for a loan these days.  In addition, the standards are higher in terms of what score you need and how it affects the cost of the loan.  To get a sense of where your credit stands, go to www.annualcreditreport.com

  2. Evaluate assets and liabilities.  A first time home-buyer should have a good idea of what is owed and what is coming in.  You should understand a little bit about monthly cash flow.

  3.  Organize Documents.  When applying for mortgages home-buyers must document their income and taxes.  Typically mortgage lenders will request two recent pay stubs, the previous 2 years W 2 tax return and 2 months of bank statements.  Every page.  Buying a home can take a long time, but knowing what you need and where you can find it can save time when your ready.

  4. Qualify yourself.  Ideally first time home-buyers  know how much they can afford to spend before the mortgage lender tells them how much they qualify for.  By calculating their debt to income ratio and factoring in a down payment, buyers should have a good idea of what they can afford.  You can know your upfront and monthly costs in advance with respect to your home.  The old standard dictates that no more than 28% of your gross monthly income be dedicated to housing costs.  This is called the front end ratio.  However, in these hard economic times we live you have to do what is best for you.

  5. Figure out your down payment.  It takes an effort to scrape together a down payment.  There are programs that can assist buyers with qualifying incomes and situations.

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Teen Scene – How to be the most Popular Girl in School

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Share this post with the teen girl or young women in your life your daughter, niece, sister, friend.  Encourage her to be the young woman God intends for her to be.

You are a carefree young lady.  Beautiful, smart, blessed.  You are God’s daughter.  At this point in your life you want to be popular, well liked, sought after by the boys, and above all, fit in!  Right?  Wrong!   To truly be the most popular girl in school and have every boy eating out of your hands, you’ve got to Stand Out!  God has called us to be different.  My mom always told me be a leader not a follower.  If we were all a carbon copy of each other, how boring would that be?

In order to be a stand out, you must first have the courage to do so.  This is an area that most young girls need help with.  Because at this stage in your life, most really don’t have courage to step out and be an individual.  Your whole existence revolves around fitting in with your peers and your self worth is wrapped up in how many likes and friends you acquire on social media.  NOT!  As a Christian, teen girls, your self worth has to come from knowing who you are in Christ.  And you must have the courage to walk in that, and live in that.

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Who are you?  You are a child of the most high God, greatly loved and highly favored.  Hold your head up high and be a leader and an example to other young ladies around you.  You have to lead by example.  God says you’re more precious than jewels and your price is far above rubies.  Proverbs 31:10, “You are  the chosen vessel to give birth to humanity!”  If that’s not the highest honor I don’t know what is.  So yeah, you kind of are all that and a bag of chips!  So this is for the young ladies that are struggling with keeping their virginity because of peer pressure from the boys or their friends.  Or, for young women who have already lost their virginity and wish they had not.  Sometimes experience is the best teacher.  You can’t undo it, but you can go forward and chart a new course.

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Mathew 7 :6, “Do not give what is holy to the dogs and do not throw your pearls before swine or they will trample them under  their feet and turn and tear you into pieces.”  Your beauty and sexuality are God given gifts that are holy.  To be shared with your husband which you will have someday.  But someday is not today.  What that scripture is telling you is that once you have given up your treasure to the unholy dogs they will turn on you.  A lot of you have experienced this already.  You know how this works right?  You’ve slept with him, and now he’s got what he wanted and has turned on you.  He may not speak to you anymore in school.  He’s acting cold and aloof, and to make matters worse he’s pursuing another girl and you’re crushed.

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How could this happen?  Sadly this is the highlight of boyhood, the male order to get as many notches on your belt as possible.  He brags to his friends about it so he can crowned king!  This is the nature of the beast called man.  Compassion is not exactly one of his strong suits at this point.  Meanwhile, you feel robbed, abandoned, hurt, vulnerable and sad.  This is your life he’s playing with, but to him its just a game of bragging rights.  The truth is girls, it doesn’t get any better anytime soon because it takes boys and men along time to grow up.  Girls mature faster than boys.  There’s a gap there.

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Today we are going to shorten the learning curve and teach you how to be the most popular girl in school.  But also, as you grow to have every man you come in contact with wrapped around your little finger right up until your wedding day.  The secret is the power of NO.  So simple right?  Well not so much because the drawbacks will be that you will loose friends and boyfriends, be talked about, possibly even made fun of.  But you have to hang in there because it’s easy to go with the crowd.  It takes courage to stand alone.  But one thing they won’t be able to say is that “they’ve had you”.  So the goal is to keep your virginity intact until marriage.

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You have to take the high road and be a girl of high standards.  You are a high value young woman.  Let the dogs sleep with the low value girls that don’t value themselves enough to wait.  Because after they’ve slept with all the low value girls they will still be after you because you’re the one they haven’t got.  And people always want, especially men, what they can’t have!!!  You’re at the age where the mistakes that a lot of others have made, you can avoid.  See, teenage boys have a lot of what’s called “game”.  The game is to put the pressure on you, give you lots of attention, tell you what you want to hear.  And once they get what they want, drop you like a bad habit.  It’s a game, you’re a conquest to be won, a deer to be shot, killed and bagged by the hunter.  Men are hunters by nature, just as women are nurturers.

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At this age, teen boys love games and challenges of all kinds, and this extends to girls.  However, don’t play their “games”, have them playing yours.  And have them on a hook and dangling on a string.  The game is called, “YOU CAN’T GET IT”.  When you play this game your stock will go up 1000%.  Today I’m going to teach you how to play to win.  You’ll stay in control and leave a trail of broken hearts instead of your heart being broken.  Because if you’re the attractive girl at school that nobody’s had, you’ll be the most popular girl in school and number one on every boys list.  Let me hip you to some game little sister. Eat your hearts out boys!  Be strong young lady!  That’s the way you bring him to his knees and make him beg for mercy.  Zapp his power and take it for yourself.

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Shannon H. a Chicago Illinois teen, 16 asks, “What if I have had sex already?”

SCW:  Just because you’ve had sex before doesn’t mean you have to continue to say yes.  Many people who’ve lost their virginity have decided to become abstinent later.

 

He’s not yet a man, he has nothing to offer you, a man has something to offer.

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Tips every Christian teen girl should know, keeping the faith through Abstinence.

  • Point #1,   You cannot play at being a woman!  The reality is that neither one of you is mentally or emotionally ready to be “adults”.  Don’t be so in a hurry to grow up.  Enjoy your youth, this age and this stage in your life.  Being a real “woman” and adult comes with responsibility and life altering decisions.  One of the major differences between a woman and a girl is a woman has the confidence to be who she is.  Stand your ground.  You tell your girlfriends, “you guys do what is best for you and Ill do what’s best for me.”

  • Point #2,  Stay in Control.  Don’t give in to the pressure.  This is how you maintain your power. It’s going to get around to the other boys that you don’t put out and they will begin lining up to try their hand, but you’ve got to shoot them down one after another like enemy terrorist on a video game.

  • Point #3,   A virgin is not an insult.  It’s something to be proud of.  You are valuing your body,  mind and emotions and protecting yourself from huge consequences like pregnancy and STD’s.  Hang out with people who respect your choices.

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Abstinence:  

Sexual Abstinence is much more common today than it was 10 or 20 years ago.  You may have read about Hollywood celebrities who are virgins and or one’s that have made the decision to abstain until marriage.  Below I’m featuring celebrity actress Meagan Good who is a Christian.  Her husband is a Pastor and also vice president at Universal Studios.  I was celibate for 2 years at one point. There are close to 700 organizations across the country whose members, mostly young people are dedicated to sexual abstinence.  Some include “True Love waits”, “Project Reality, ” “worth waiting for” and “Clean teens and friends first.”  It has also become more popular for schools in this country to teach abstinence in sex education classes.  Some teens are abstaining due to religious or moral reasons.  Others want to wait for personal reasons.  Smart teens are catching on.  Sexual abstinence may not be the easiest thing but it’s certainly the safest.  I had fun with this post and even threw in Envogue’s “Never going to get it” video which came to mind for this Post. Enjoy!

 

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Visualize a New You

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How’s that New year’s resolution working out to get fit in 2016?  Give up yet?  Hanging in there?  Fortunately you can start again today!  There’s been so much in the news lately of people dying of heart disease, it’s really sad because it’s preventable.

As we age we need to put effort into staying fit, but its more than just an unhealthy lifestyle that can kill you.  What’s the use of being spiritually strong if your body is going down the crapper.  Your health is your wealth.  There are people in the hospital right now begging God for the opportunity you have now  to be healthy.

You don’t notice good health until it’s gone.  It starts in your mind.  Every battle or challenge begins in your mind.  Make a decision to live  long and live strong.  If you can see it you can do it.  Professional motivational speakers will often tell people to first visualize success in your mind get a picture of where you want to go.

Next create a vision board and hang it up in your house where you will see it.  Put your goals out in front of you.  This works with anything you want, a new career, new house, new body, marriage and family. You notice in weight loss commercials they give you a vision of what you can be.

They will show you the end result of weight loss with a woman with a slender body, healthy, happy and smiling.  You see her and say yes, I want to look like that.  Success is a formula it doesn’t just happen.  There has to be a method that is in place.

You don’t see the hours and hours of preparation pro athletes put in to become the best.  They are not just showing up on the court.  Repetition, repetition, repetition.  What habits are you exercising to bring you closer to your goal?  If there are none, Take Action Today!  What habits am I exercising to keep me fit?  I’m glad you asked.  I exercise on the elliptical at least 3 times a week for 20 to 35 minutes.

I habitually drink water Monday through Friday and give myself a break on the weekends.  It’s only two bottles of water everyday but habitually that adds up to 40 bottles a month.  My skin is clear and glowing and I receive a lot of compliments on my skin.  My diet has changed dramatically.

Red meat once or twice a month, is my new normal.  But in actuality I hadn’t had red meat in about 3 months and didn’t miss it.  Until last week that is, it was my birthday and I had a steak dinner to treat myself.  But my new daily drill is, Breakfast: banana, yogurt, cereal, Lunch: chicken Cesar salad and chicken fried rice, or some variation of salad with something light.

Sometimes I may have a light third meal but most times I do not.  So I’m doing like 2 meals per day and that is becoming my new normal.  The water suppresses my appetite so that I’m not hungry and don’t snack constantly.  Your body will get used to changes quickly.  I get plenty of rest.  It takes effort.  Some days I wake up I don’t “feel” like going to the gym.  But I put on my exercise clothes and go whether I “feel” like it or not.  Funny thing is after I workout I feel great and the results motivate me to keep going.  My energy is high and now I feel like a rocket that can go to the moon!!!  Prepare for take off!!!

The Formula

  • Get moving, exercise your body,  start slow and build up

  • Change your diet

  • Get plenty of rest

  • Drink plenty of water, it’s the fountain of youth

  • Be patient.  It takes time to change your mindset and settle into a new routine

 

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Change your mindset for fitness in 2016

  1. You have to want it!  Your success will only be as strong as your desire.  You have to be mentally and physically ready to maintain a permanent change in your health.

  2. Remember it’s measured in increments.  Celebrate small successes along the way.  Even if it’s 3 pounds, it’s 3 pounds of success, loose 3 more.  A steady drip of water will burn a whole rock.

  3. Consistency is the key.  You are what you habitually do.

 

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Trusting God’s Timing For Christian Singles

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Lamentations 3:25  The Lord is good to those who wait for him, to the soul that seeks him.

 

You are a single Christian Woman.  You value marriage and children and long to be a Godly wife and mother.  However, God has not yet fulfilled those desires in your life.  Married or single unfulfilled desire is a life long problem.  Sometimes we desire things in opposition to God.  Why would God impress upon our hearts the value and worth of a God centered marriage without also fulfilling that desire by giving us a God honoring spouse?  What should single Christians do with this unfulfilled desire?  Trust GOD! What do singles do in waiting?  Be at peace while waiting on the Lord’s perfect timing.

I know.  It’s hard to wait on God.  The last thing you want to do is get ahead of God and pick the wrong man and waste more of your precious life getting rid of the mess and getting back on track again. I had the same thoughts of “Will it ever Happen?  Are there any good Godly men left?” but like you I had to exercise the fruit of the spirit of patience.  While you are waiting, the trick is to not become bitter and to keep a good attitude.  Because little do you know  your husband may be right around the corner.  But if he see’s you with a sour face, he may not approach you.  Pray.  Let God know the desires of your heart, which in reality He already knows what and who you need better than you.  But go ahead and give Him your wish list and let it go!

Proceed with the life that God has given you to the fullest at this level.  Give your all to your career right now and make it flourish. Keep a laugh in your heart and a smile on your face.  Do the things that you enjoy.  Sometimes we think God is taking too long to bless us with a husband but often times God is waiting on us to be ready for the blessing He has prepared.  So you’re waiting on God and God is waiting on you to grow up in certain areas.  God had to work with me in a lot of different areas in order to get me ready for the blessing and it doesn’t stop once you are joined with someone.

God continues to work on us throughout outer life.  Remember He who has done a good work in you shall bring it to completion.  It’s a process.  Life is a process.  And you will go through different stages.  The difference in marriage is you won’t be alone.  So instead of always saying when God when?  Pray that He shows you the areas of your life and character that need improving to prepare you for the blessing.  It’s important for you to know that you’re not going to rush God along by your worrying, He’s not in a hurry.  Luke 12:25 who can add one day to your life by worrying?

Waiting is not easy.  You never know what God has in store or when.  When I came out to California, I thought I was coming here to continue my education.  I had no idea I was going to meet the love of my life here.  In fact when I came out I  was living in the beach community of Santa Monica and I looked around at the men and thought to myself, “I will never meet him here because these men were into surfing, wearing flip-flops daily, and dressing very casually even if they were very wealthy which a lot of people here are. They are just comfortable with casual dress.”

Now me, being an east coast girl, that doesn’t work for me.  I’m interested in suit and tie professionals.  Men looking sharp and all about business.  So I saw these men as frivolous minded.  I’m attracted to smart men!  I like intellectual conversations.  A man needs to be able to stimulate my mind first before he has a snowball’s chance of keeping my attention.  So I just kind of put it out of my mind and kept doing my thing.  But lo and behold I did meet the type of man I wanted.

Complete with suit and tie, educated, super smart, a serious-minded computer genius no less, cute as a button, and a Christian man to boot!  Wow God!!  I trust you!!!  HE GAVE ME EXACTLY WHAT I WANTED IN A PLACE I DIDN’T THINK I WOULD FIND IT.  “MY WAYS ARE HIGHER THAN YOUR WAYS, MY THOUGHTS ARE HIGHER THAN YOUR THOUGHTS!”  GOD IS SAYING I’M SMARTER THAN YOU!  Indeed you are God and what a good thing.  Your blessing is anywhere God wants you to be.  Our nature is to fret and worry and try to figure things out.  God calls us to confidence and peace.  But you may say I don’t “feel” confident.  It’s okay, don’t look at confidence and peace as feelings. They are positions!  Take the position of confidence and peace.  God is in charge and He knows what He’s doing.  His plan for your life reflects His all surpassing wisdom and His tireless love for you.  Trust in his timing and be at peace.

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Meditations for Christian Single Women

Isaiah 43:18,  “Do not remember the former things nor remember the things of old.  Behold I will do a new thing now it shall spring forth.”


Isaiah 46:10-11,  “My counsel shall stand.  And I will accomplish all my purpose.  Calling a bird of prey from the east.  And the man of my counsel from a far country.  I have spoken and I will bring it to pass.  I have purposed it and I will do it.”


Psalms 103:13,  “As a father shows compassion for his children, so the Lord shows compassion to those that fear him.”


Philippians 4 :11-13,  “I have learned whatever state I’m in to be content.  I know how to be abased and how to be abound.  In any and every circumstance.  I have learned the secret of facing plenty, hunger, abundance and need.  I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me.”


1 Timothy 6:6,  “Godliness with contentment is great gain.”


 

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There is strength in numbers.  Ban together with your single Christian sisters and support each other.

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The official American holiday is today. Happy birthday to a true man of God, humanatarian and peacemaker for all people

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Verse of the Day

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