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February 2007
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19 entries from March 2007

She Needs Family

Our series on His Needs, Her Needs is approaching the last three chapters. Today let’s take a look at a woman’s need for her husband to be a good father and committed to family.

Women are deeply connected to family, parents, aunts, uncles, etc. Women enjoy family events and spending time with her parents. I could write an entire post about this subject but have instead focused on child rearing.

Proverbs 22:6 (New International Version)
6 Train a child in the way he should go,
and when he is old he will not turn from it.

Women truly understand the wisdom of this passage. They also expect their husbands to be a partner in the raising of the children. So what does it mean when a woman says, “ I want my children to have a good father?”

Time…. It takes time.

Meals with the family. Bike rides, board games, sporting events, homework and family projects are a few suggestions. I would love to hear about some of the ways your husband is involved with the kids.

Fatherhood is a commitment and a charge from God. The involvement of a father in the lives of his girls and boys will leave a lasting and strong impression on a child. It is undeniable. It often takes training to become a great dad. Father’s must learn how to be consistent in parenting. Learn how to punish properly, reach agreement with your wife about discipline. Also, teach your children “why” they must follow the rules. (I never liked, because I said so, neither do my kids) Learn how to handle anger. (Men listen to this one.) Control your anger before you discipline. ---Dr. Willard Harley

One important fact I would like to highlight is the myth that child rearing is solely the responsibility of the mother. Many times, early in marriage, a wife will leave her job to raise the kids. Both husband and wife agree it will be a strain but it can work if the husband can focus on providing financially while the wife takes care of all the child raising needs. This rarely works. Even if Mom agreed in the beginning, she will be disillusioned later into the marriage. A woman needs her husband’s involvement, help and support with the children.

This is a great chapter. Read it. Also, Dr. Dobson has written several excellent books regarding parenting. I highly recommend them to all parents. Family.org

Have a blessed day! Thank you all Dad’s who willingly offer themselves first to God and then to your wife and children! Blessings, Lynn

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1stPeter3Living - April Study

04867: Men Are like Waffles-Women Are like Spaghetti: Understanding and Delighting in Your Differences Men Are like Waffles-Women Are like Spaghetti: Understanding and Delighting in Your Differences
By Bill & Pam Farrel
Men and women know they are different, but what can they do about the differences?

In this refreshing and humorous look at relationships, Bill and Pam Farrel explain why a man is like a waffle (each element of his life is in a separate box), why a woman is like a plate of spaghetti (everything in her life touches everything else), and how the differences can work for you….

• Help each other relieve stress instead of creating it.
• Coordinate parenting so kids get the best of both Mom and Dad.
• Bring out the best your spouse has to give in sex, work, friendship, and communication.

Men Are Like Waffles, - Women Are Like Spaghetti will shine a light into the marvel and mystery of the one you live with, love and care for.---

Okay gals! Doesn't it sound like this book could help every one of us? If you don't have time for anything else this spring, this is the one not to skip. Order your book today. We will begin Reading April 1st (appropriate isn't it on April Fool's day???).

I will be leading our study group with questions and there are NO WRONG ANSWERS. Our discussion will focus on helping each other discover how to live in our marriages and bring harmony, patience, love and respect into our homes.

You have a week. Don't hesitate, order your book now. I can't wait until we tackle some of the sticky and fun topics.

Excerpt, Page 10: I accompanied Bill to a lawn-equipment store to look at used riding mowers. After examining the array, Bill wanted to "think about it". Not wanting to lose a sale, the sales manager quickly mentioned their 60-day, no-interest payment program.

"Sounds great," Bill said, "but I have to talk this over with my wife or there'll be 60-days, no-interest at home."

HILARIOUS! I can soooooo relate! We are going to have fun with this one! Blessings, Lynn
1Peter3Living; join us today!

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A Healthy Give-and-Take

For more articles about marriage, visit Christine at Fruit In Season

I want to share a quick thought before we leave the domestic support area of our study. A few weeks ago I was visiting with a couple of friends from my Bible study group. The discussion had rolled around to the responsibilities we share or don't share with our spouse.

One of the gals made a very wise comment about sharing marriage responsibilities. It is very simple: Sharing the responsibilities in marriage should be a healthy give-and-take.

Here is the key. It may not always be fair. One partner may do more than the other but it is their choice. A healthy give-and-take is what makes all relationships thrive.

What is healthy? I think it is when both spouses truly consider what they can do to make life easier for the other. I have seen this modeled and it is a beautiful thing.

Talk to your spouse. Press for a healthy give-and-take. When both of you remove laziness, entitlements and selfishness, you have found the key to happiness and contentment in a life-long marriage.

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Domestic Support

Let’s take a look today at a man’s need for peace and quite, domestic support. Quite frankly, I think this is a woman’s need as well. However, we are able to deal with the chaos of child rearing better than men in general. Okay, I’m a little ornery today, sorry guys.

This chapter is fascinating. Men are a closed mouth group. They rarely speak about their real feelings that resided deep inside. They are giving their utmost to provide, to be brave, to give the family a quality of life. Many are overwhelmed but never share their stress. They face the work world and slay the dragon, or try to with all of their might. They look forward to relaxing at home to recover and recharge.

When he arrives home, he expects his wife to cook the meals, do the laundry, and care for the kids. Appears to be unfair? So how do we solve the splitting of duties at home?

Dr. Harley encourages spouses to write down their activities and the time needed to complete them. Work through them together to negotiate a workable division of the labor. The time spent in chores, including working, child care, household responsibilities and home maintenance does not need to be the same. It should be fair. Fair is what the two of you decide together is fair.

Example: John was skeptical about his wife’s 10 hours to bath the children. She suggested he bathe the children and multiply the time it took by seven for each day of the week. Once he did this he realized his wife’s estimate was a bargain.

Again, this chapter offers in-depth information on how to create a division of labor and how to lovingly negotiate changes. Read it!

Be blessed, Lynn

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Thankful Thursday

Thankful Thursday at Spiritually Unequal Marriage is an opportunity to give thanks to the King for our spouses.

Today I am thankful for my husband's work ethic and willingness to provide. In an earlier post we covered a woman's need to feel financially secure. I have arrived at this place. Thank you Sweetie!

It was not an easy road for sure. For years I was driven to be self-sufficient, working to support myself. One of the most difficult things for me to do was to quit work and solely rely on my husband to provide. Miracles of miracles, I am finally free of the driving need to rely on no one. God has delivered me from much insecurity and worldliness.

Thank you Lord, Jesus. Amen.

Have a blessed day! Lynn

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The Wholeness of God

Today I am over at Jehovah Java. I am sharing a story of how my brain works... From watermelon to the Holiness of God. I hope you will pop in for a quick read.

Contributor at:

Next up: His Need, Peace and Quiet? Domestic Support. Have a blessed day. Lynn

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Financial Security

Does a woman marry for money? This may be an offensive question and most would flatly reply a resounding no. However, it is not as far fetched as we think. Women have a basic need to feel financially secure.

Women want to have a choice to work or stay home. If they choose a career, they want the income to be a supplement to the family budget not a necessity. Most women are grateful to stay home and nurture the children. This is the ideal situation but hardly the reality.

Many couple’s standard of living forces the wife into the work force to help make ends meet. This is where fighting erupts. The clear issue at hand is the couple’s willingness to redefine their standard of living and make adjustments.

Regrettably most individuals, even Christian’s, are caught up in “keeping up with the Joneses.” To find peace in this area a family must learn to live on what the husband earns.

Create a budget: Dr. Harley points out these guidelines:
• Housing, 20%
• Food, 20%
• Utilities, clothing, transportation, medical and personal care, 30%
• Remaining 25% for charity, entertainment, education and home improvement

Happy is the couple who tries to live on what they need, not what they want. His Need, Her Needs, Dr. Harley

Here is the challenge: Are you and your husband willing to make the changes necessary to live on a budget?

Finances are one of the most difficult areas in marriage. Out of control budgets and unfettered spending is a recipe for disaster in marriage as well in your financial life. As a former banker, I can tell you I have seen up close and personal what financial ruin can do. Take steps today to get on the path of financial security. Make an appointment with a financial counselor, read books written for Christians who want to budget. Check out Crown Financial Ministries. They have a multitude of information to get you started.

The key is prayerful willingness to live within your means. Easier said than done, perhaps but remember: Matthew 19:26 Jesus looked at them and said, "With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible."

If you need prayer in this area, I will pray for you. Please let me know how to pray. Be blessed, Lynn

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Marriage Monday

Christine at Fruit In Season has an interesting book review about Marriage. Check it out. Tomorrow we will be visiting a woman's need for financial support.

Praying God is in the details of your marriage and your week. Be blessed, Lynn

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He needs an Attractive Spouse

Today I want to return to our study of His Needs, Her Needs. Let’s look at His need for an attractive spouse.

Okay gals, this may not be easy. It is NOT fair but it is truth. Let’s get to it. Men are visual. They are stimulated by sight. It should come as no surprise they want – no need – an attractive spouse. I am talking physical attractiveness.

I am going to highlight just a few areas. This is a difficult subject and I highly recommend reading the book to understand the complexity of this chapter.

Dr. Harley points out the woman was once attractive but has become lazy. After the marriage vows, she lets herself go. With this said, Dr. Harley simply states: a woman should take pains to look something like the woman her husband married. When a man’s wife looks good, he feels good.

Tips:
• Balance your intake of calories with the proper amount of exercise.
• Use make up to your advantage
• Hairstyle he likes
• Clothes showcase a woman

Attractiveness is what you do with what you have. An attractive woman is made, not born.

Next up: She needs financial support.

Have a blessed day. Lynn

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Fifteen Years and Counting

It was fifteen years ago today. Two unsuspecting and optimistic young adults walked down the isle. We were married in the typical fashion and it was a beautiful day and the weeks following were filled with love.

As the weeks became months, then years our marriage relationship grew and changed. My husband and I are more in love today than we were on our wedding day. We have overcome so much together. It is because of the great love of Jesus our marriage survived the rocky years.

I know many readers here at Spiritually Unequal Marriage are struggling within their marriage. The spiritual differences in the home are paramount. Many feel heart broken, lonely and desperate. Today as I look back on the years when I was exactly where you are, I encourage you to stay the course. You CAN have peace, love and a genuinely wonderful marriage in spite of your differing beliefs.

Fifteen years…. O Lord, thank you for my husband and our marriage. O Lord, where will our marriage be in another fifteen years? I pray it will be at the feet of Jesus, united as one.

Be encouraged. If God can move in our marriage to bring happiness, love and contentment, He can and will move in yours. Blessings my friends, Lynn

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Guest Writer - Dineen Miller

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It is my great pleasure to have Dineen Miller write for us again. Dineen was one of the first readers, prayer parters and guest writers here. She is my biggest encourager. I love her deeply. This weekend we met face-to-face for the first time at the Deeper Still Conference in San Francisco.

Now, without further ado... Dineen Miller

The Storm That Waits
By Dineen A. Miller

A depression threatened like a storm waiting offshore to pound a defenseless city. I wept. I moaned. My struggles had become heart wrenching for several weeks. Yet in the midst of these fierce winds, I wondered why. I knew I needed an attitude adjustment, at the very least, but I still didn’t understand the source of my discord.

God had already warned me the next year would be difficult, in terms of being unequally yoked, and I sensed the days counting down to the final outcome of my husband’s transformation. I’ve known what would be coming for six years, and God recently said it was time to prepare. I was ready.

Or so I thought.

As I sat in church a few Sundays ago, the still soft voice of God broke through the storm clouds. He reminded me that it was He who put me on this path. I agreed. Then He said I had a choice. (He’s ever so good with giving choices, isn’t He?) I could continue to go as I had been, kicking and screaming, or I could go obediently and receive His blessing.

I realized then that I’d never chosen to do what God had asked me. I’d let the storm waves take my faith and my trust in every direction except where He wanted me to go. And I did have a choice: I could either go against the flow of His will, or put God back in control so we could sail in peace-filled, but not still, waters. Amazing how quickly the light of God’s truth can dissipate the darkness.

My boat still rocks quite a bit at times. That’s usually an indicator that I need another direction (or attitude) adjustment. The year ahead promises some of the roughest waters to come, but I’m slowly learning not to worry about what’s ahead.

And leave the destination to God.

Dineen Miller

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Jehovah Java

Today I am thrilled to be a contributor over at Christian Women Online, Jehovah Java. Please join me there for a mean cup of coffee and a yarn that is legend in our neck of the woods. You will know me a little better after this tale.

Also, I am posting today at Laced With Grace, a story about an angel in my kitchen window. Blessings my friends. I love each of you. Happy Friday and Have a great weekend.

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Thankful Thursday

Thankful Thursday at Spiritually Unequal Marriage is an opportunity to give thanks to the King for our spouses.

My husband is a great Dad. He travels for business Monday through Friday. I mean he puts his butt on a plane and flies away for five days. No matter where he is in America, he always phones home at least once a day and he always helps my daughter with her math homework. Get this... he can still remember middle school math and can do it in his head......

Scary....

How does your guy "scare" you??? Be blessed, Lynn

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Her Need: Honesty and Openness - Part II

Privacy in a marriage relationship is one thing but secrecy is another issue all together. Honesty is one of the most important qualities in a successful marriage. When you are married, you must send each other accurate messages and receive accurate responses.

Do husband’s lie to their wives? A man may respond in a dishonest, vague, or ambiguous way for one of several reasons:
 He may have lied about minor things from an early age. He lies chronically.
 He’s afraid to reveal his true feelings because he doesn’t want to appear weak, stupid, or whatever. He wants to avoid trouble.
 He feels afraid he will hurt his wife’s feelings, so he protects her from the truth thinking it might be too much for her.

These approaches are defeating and destructive. The far better course: the truth. When a wife hears the truth from her husband, about what he thinks, what he plans, where he has gone and where he wants to go, she can respond to him with security and confidence.—Dr. Willard Harley, His Needs, Her Needs.

Privacy has it’s place but not if it is keeping a part of yourself from your spouse. Women need open communication, any time day or night. Most women will not abuse this privilege by calling their husbands out of important business. Just knowing you can reach your spouse is what builds trust and makes the love bank grow.

Next Up: He needs an attractive spouse. Be blessed, Lynn

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Her Need: Honesty and Openness

Dorothy felt both perplexed and enchanted by Frank’s mystique: She had never met a more private man, and he often evaded her questions. Near the end of the date she might ask him where he was going or what he was planning to do. He would just wink, smile knowingly, and say, “I’ll call you tomorrow.”

Frank’s behavior seemed a bit odd, but Dorothy told herself that everybody has a right to privacy. Certainly Frank had a right to keep some things to himself.----Dr. Harley, His Needs, Her Needs.

The question at hand is: In marriage does your spouse have a right to privacy?

We are going to see what Dr. Harley says about this tomorrow. How much privacy do you think is good in marriage?

See you in the morning. Blessings, Lynn

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Psalm 191

Psalm191

Tomorrow: Her Need: Openness and Honesty

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Ultimate Blog Party At Spiritually Unequal Marriage

Ultimate Blog Party

Welcome all Blog Party Visitors. I hope you are having fun and are meeting many new wonderful friends. I sure am. I want to share with you a little bit about this site and about myself.

I have a passion for other sojourners who are navigating the unique challenges of an unequally yoked marriage. I write from practical experience about marriage and spiritual singleness. SUM is also blessed to have many contributing writers as well. Wise men and women who also have life experience in a spiritually unequal marriage.

In addition, many of the readers here are also part of an online study 1Peter3Living. Stop in for a visit. We have wonderful fellowship, offer encouragement, love and prayers for each other.

I also am a contributor at Laced With Grace where I write devotions every Friday. Check out today's article. I need bullfrogs and mud pies.

Beginning next week I will also contribute to Christian Women Online, Jehovah Java Internet Cafe.

I love Jesus intensely and live to encourage others to find love, peace and contentment in Him just as I have. Blessings my friends.

Party On....

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Bullfrogs and mudpies

I know that many of the readers who have stop in here at Spiritually Unequal Marriage this past week, are feeling overwhelmed in almost every area of life. I am not amune. I have so much on my plate. I feel frazzled. I will quote my friend Denise, "I feel like I fell off the planet."

Today at Laced With Grace, I wrote about bullfrogs and mudpies. I really need them when I am operating in overwhelm mode. Stop over for a quick read.

Have a blessed Friday!! Lynn

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Thankful Thursday

I love the blogging community. I have met some of my best friends through this quirky online world. I have been blessed, encouraged and challenged through each of you.

My blogging journey started with Christian Women Online. I am thankful today for Darlene, Editor of the Ezine.

Christian Women Online is the largest Christian women community there is on the internet. Have you seen yet the latest addition to CWO?

Check it out! Carol has written a wonderful post about blogging. Also, visit other Thankful Thursday participants at Sting My Heart.

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