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20 entries from December 2008

Preparing for the New Year

1113574_toward_2009 Reflection seems to be a common state this time of year. As the New Year approaches, we look back on the past year and wonder what the new one will bring. Over the last few years God has led me to take this last week of December and the first week of January to spend time focused on what He wants to accomplish in the next year. I encourage you to do the same so that you can enter 2009 prepared and ready to join God in his plan.

These are the areas I focus on:

  1. Me. What adjustments do I need to make in my life in the areas of Bible study, service, prayer and fasting, and obedience to what God is calling me to do. As a writer, this is a constant struggle to stay on track and keep my words serving Him, which makes his guidance so valuable a reference point when I veer off track.
  2. My husband. Besides my constant prayers for his salvation, I ask God specifically for ways I can and should be praying for my husband throughout the new year. Interestingly enough, this has changed each year in regards to my husband’s future salvation and my growing belief that God will soon bring this to pass. For example, last year God told me to change my prayers from asking to thanking God for putting my husband’s salvation into place and to claim it.
  3. My children. My constant prayer for them is always protection and a deepening faith, but I also want to be sensitive to what God is doing in their lives. Along with my own concerns, I ask God to show what areas I need to cover in prayer for the upcoming year. This also gives me insight to what the year will hold for them.
  4. Extended family. Who in your family needs special prayers for the coming year? This is a good time to make a list (not too long or you’ll be overwhelmed) of those who don’t believe, are struggling in their lives, or are ill.
  5. Friends. How can I be praying and uplifting the special people in my life? Praying for them keeps me closer to them as well.
  6. Missionary. Do you have a cause or missionary you support? Put it down and make a commitment to pray for them. (Include your pastor here too!)
  7. World. Is there an area God is calling you to pray for on a larger scope? I will say this is the first year I’ve felt led to pray for a president, but I’m committed to praying for President Elect Obama.

Finally, write it all down. I assign a day of the week to each area (Monday for my immediate family, Tuesdays for extended family, etc.) Give each day a page and list who and what you’re praying for. Then leave space to write in updates during the year. This will help you reassess the following year as well.

Also jot down any promises God gives you in these areas so that you can go back and read them when you find yourself discouraged or off track. You’ll be amazed how much strength you can draw from these reminders that God is personally involved in every aspect of our lives.

I hope this helps you bring in the New Year with new hope and determination to serve our amazing God by serving others. Sometimes our circumstances leave us little time to do more than pray, but what greater gift can we give those we love and honor in the coming year?

Praying and believing,
Dineen

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Thankful Thursday - Christmas!


I am thankful for Jesus Christ, God who became a human to redeem and make us children of God....
 
The magnitude of this event is still beyond my complete conception. But today on Christmas Day, I am thankful.
 
The theme this day is Christmases past.... Well I have a story..... If you have been a reader here at SUM you probably know I am a woman of passion. I am passionate about Jesus. I am passionate about marriage. I am passionate about my husband. I am passionate about many things.
 
Reflecting on Christmases past, I realize this passion that dwells in me is a gift from God. This passion came out of me at a very early age and in a big way when I was age eight or nine. So here is my story.
 
Don't Mess With a Girl Who Believes....

It was 12:30 a.m.... Christmas Day.... The clock was relentless. I watched the minutes turn into hours and slowly tick by. Each tick grew my anxiety. Yet my relatives sat downstairs laughing and giggling hour after long hour. I could hear their annoying voices through the thin walls of my bedroom and now at 12:30 a.m. I KNEW they were going to be up all night.

These people, who at the moment I didn't want to claim as relations, were ruining my chances with Santa. Hours ago my Grandma had tucked me in with a kiss and a Merry Christmas, Lynnie. See you in the morning.

Finally after waiting all these hours for the gabbing crowd of relatives to go to bed I reached my breaking point. After all....

I believed.

I believed in Santa and he was due to arrive any minute now. I also knew that if Santa found ANYONE awake when he hit the roof, the free toys would be given to other kids whose parents were wiser and went to bed early. Sheesh!

Finally the last round of laughter seeped through the cracks in the wall and sent me over the edge. I purposely set my feet on the ground and strode straight into the lion's den. The den of the adult world of eggnog sippers. What was it with eggnog anyway??? Hmmmm

I stormed down the stairs and pounded my feet on the wooden floor in front of at least 15 pairs of eyes. The room grew quiet. I knew my face was red and I felt as thought I was going to pop.

I blurted out, "GO TO BED RIGHT NOW. Santa will not stop here because all of you are laughing and are still awake.

You could have heard a pin drop as I eyeballed each of them.

Suddenly the room exploded with such a roar I thought the roof would blow off the house. Hysterical family members contorted into strange shapes before my very eyes, overcome with laughter. Aunt Top ran for the bathroom muttering something like.... I'm going to pee my pants.

Uncle Bob, Grandma, Papa, everyone set off another round of laughter when my face turned completely red and steam rose from the top of my head.

Befuddled and defeated, I knew my lecture was a doomed effort. I slumped back to my bedroom with Mom trailing behind my downcast frame. I heard small giggles escape her lips though she tried to stifle them as she followed.

"Sweetie, Santa will come... You keep believing." She smiled and tucked me in.

Guess What? He did.

Many years ago and still today, I am a woman of passion.

I believe....

I believe Jesus was born this day. He is God who became man to save us from our sins and make us children of God. I will stand red-faced with passion in my voice among the throngs of unbelievers and shout..... I believe!

Merry Christmas. I pray the year is your best ever. God bless, Lynn

For more Thankful Thursday blessings, visit Iris at Grace Alone.

 

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The Christ Candle

Welcome to the lighting of the Christ Candle. All the candles are lit! Isn't it glorious! I hope you've enjoyed this tradition as much as I do and will make it a special part of your Christmas each year. It's a wonderful way to be reminded that Jesus truly is the reason for the season.

Christmas Eve
(after sundown or Christmas Day)
Color:
White
Theme:
Christmas
Suggested Scripture Readings:
Luke 1:68-79, Luke 2:1-20

Lord, we praise you for this glorious day. Your Word came and became flesh in the tiny baby. You walked among us as a man and died for us as our Savior. You deserve all our worship, love, and praise. Mighty Counselor, Prince of Peace, Holy God, You are wonderful! We love you! Amen.

MERRY CHRISTMAS

OUR SAVIOR IS BORN!

May God bless you richly for the coming year!
Much love,
Dineen

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A Blog Chistmas Card

1119558_35346821 The icy cold of morning,
the snowy storm of night.
Christmas love is warming
at the fire's light.

Sweet songs of yuletide
drift through the Christmas cheer.
Hearts sing like an angel
for peace has come so near.

Dawning is the gift
in the form of one small boy.
Given us so long ago,
assuring lasting joy.

Lynn and I wish you all much love, peace, and joy for Christmas and the New Year!
Merry Christmas!

Praying and believing,
Dineen

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Weekend Devotion:
Fourth Sunday of Advent

Welcome to the fourth Sunday of Advent. If you've created a wreath of your own for the first time this year, I hope it's a tradition you will hold onto. My first three candles have burned shorter. And now the fourth one is lit. Almost time to light the Christ Candle! May the Prince of Peace fill your year with new revelations of his presence. Be blessed!

Fourth Sunday of Advent

Color:
Purple
Theme:
Peace
Suggested Scripture Readings:
Isaiah 9:6-7, John 14:27

Lord, thank you for sending your Son to be our Prince of Peace. We praise you for this wonderful peace you give us by the indwelling of your Holy Spirit. And mostly, we thank you for the promise of salvation, an eternity spent in the presence of Jesus Christ, our Saviour. All glory is yours, Amen.

Praying and believing,
Dineen

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A Big Waste of Time...

Have fun...

This is one of my favorite Holiday time-wasters.... I hope you can blow a few minutes with me. See if you can guess the Christmas carol.

Chrisch Chrisdek Christaw Christbel Christkknigh Christl Christok Christonig Christshipp (ANSWERS)

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Thankful Thursday

Girls,
 
It has been raining all day. Gloomy, dank, wet.... and cold..... Burrrrrr. and..
 
I LOVE IT!! My roots go back to Colorado, Denver in fact and cold weather in Southern California is as close as I get to holiday memories.
 
Now I know the rest of the country is freezing.... burrrrrr... but I am thankful for a real seasonal weather this year.....
 

Snow temecula

God has a wonderful Christmas planned for all of us. You know why? Jesus came!!!  We are saved!!
 
Praising the Lord today! Be blessed, Lynn


For more Thankful Thursday blessings, visit Iris at Grace Alone.

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A Journal Moment...

Journal.thumbnail Dear S.U.M. Friends,
I haven't talked much about what's been happening with my daughter, because I didn't want it to become a focal point here, but I did want to take a moment and update you. From the time this started, you've prayed for us, showed your caring, and kept in touch. I can't tell you how much that has meant to me over the last two months. I'm so thankful.

In a nutshell, my daughter Leslie is doing great! Your prayers have definitely been felt and heard. She's nearly recovered from the surgery to remove the tumor. Since then the doctors have discovered it's a less aggressive form of cancer than they first thought. Also, her cerebral and spinal fluids have tested completely clear of any tumor or cancer cells. This means she will ONLY need radiation therapy and ONLY in the area where the tumor once was. And no chemo.

Praise God! By early next year, she'll be done and well on her way back to life as normal.

I have to say, though, I don't believe normal will ever be the same. God has continually reminded me he's here and that Leslie would be okay. And though I know we don't fully understand why all this happened, I trust God's plan completely and have no doubts that his purposes in all this are quite profound. The key is being patient and waiting to see what that may be! (smile)

In the meantime, we have so much to be thankful for. I know it's not Thankful Thursday, but I'd like to start early this week.

I am thankful my daughter will soon be healthy and have a future to look forward to.

I am thankful my husband is the wonderful and affirming man he is. He's amazed and surprised me these last few weeks with his concern, caring, and determination to take care of his family. He's my hero. :-)

I am thankful for what I/we have learned in all this, and how it has changed us.

I am thankful for the ways this will affect the future for good, for people we won't even know about. People we didn't even know were watching, future patients who will benefit from what they've learned from Leslie's case, and for those touched and strengthened in their faith because of a brave 14 year old.

I am thankful for all my friends and family for being there to support and encourage us. Just walking with us on this journey has blessed us beyond belief. I've found so much comfort in "knowing" you all were out there, praying and thinking about us. That's just amazing that you would do that for us. Thank you.

And finally, I am so incredibly thankful to God for everything he has done, is doing, and will do with this challenge. My life verse has always been Romans 8:28:

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him,who have been called according to his purpose.

I am thankful to God for putting this truth in me, even as a young child. I know it to be even more true now.

Praying and believing,
Dineen

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There Once was a Man Who Didn't Believe

There was once a man who didn't believe in God, and he didn't hesitate to let others know how he felt about religion and religious holidays, like Christmas. His wife, however, did believe, and she raised their children to also have faith in God and Jesus, despite his disparaging comments.

Snow_church One snowy Christmas Eve, his wife was taking their children to a Christmas Eve service in the farm community in which they lived. She asked him to come, but he refused.

"That story is nonsense!" he said. "Why would God lower Himself to come to Earth as a man? That's ridiculous!" So she and the children left, and he stayed home.

A while later, the winds grew stronger and the snow turned into a blizzard. As the man looked out the window, all he saw was a blinding snowstorm. He sat down to relax before the fire for the evening. Then he heard a loud thump. Something had hit the window. Then another thump. He looked out, but couldn't see more than a few feet.

When the snow let up a little, he ventured outside to see what could have been beating on his window. In the field near his house he saw a flock of wild geese. Apparently they had been flying south for the winter when they got caught in the snowstorm and couldn't go on. They were lost and stranded on his farm, with no food or shelter. They just flapped their wings and flew around the field in low circles, blindly and aimlessly. A couple of them had flown into his window, it seemed.

The man felt sorry for the geese and wanted to help them. The barn would be a great place for them to stay, he thought. It's warm and safe; surely they could spend the night and wait out the storm. So he walked over to the barn and opened the doors wide, then watched and waited, hoping they would notice the open barn and go inside.

The geese just fluttered around aimlessly and didn't seem to notice the barn or realize what it could mean for them. The man tried to get their attention, but that just seemed to scare them and they moved further away. He went into the house and came back out with some bread, broke it up, and made a breadcrumbs trail leading to the barn, but they still didn't catch on.

Now he was getting frustrated. He got behind them and tried to shoo them toward the barn, but they only got more scared and scattered in every direction except toward the barn. Nothing he did could get them to go into the barn where they would be warm and safe.

"Why don't they follow me?!" he exclaimed. "Can't they see this is the only place where they can survive the storm?" He thought for a moment and realized that they just wouldn't follow a human.

"If only I were a goose, then I could save them," he said out loud.Geese winter

Then he had an idea. He went into barn, got one of his own geese, and carried it in his arms as he circled around behind the flock of wild geese. He then released it. His goose flew through the flock and straight into the barn - and one by one the other geese followed it to safety!

He stood silently for a moment as the words he had spoken a few minutes earlier replayed in his mind:

"If only I were a goose, then I could save them!"
Then he thought about what he had said to his wife earlier. "Why would God want to be like us? That's ridiculous!"

Suddenly it all made sense. That is what God had done. We were like the geese - blind, lost, and perishing. God had His Son become like us so He could show us the way and save us. That was the meaning of Christmas, he realized!

As the winds and blinding snow died down, his soul became quiet and pondered this wonderful thought. Suddenly he understood what Christmas was all about, why Christ had come.

Years of doubt and disbelief vanished like the passing storm. He fell to his knees in the snow, and prayed his first prayer:

Mangercross "Thank You, God, for coming in human form to get me out of the storm!"

~Author Unknown

Peggy from Amazing Grace ~Mazes, Messes, Miracles sent this to me yesterday. Thank you Peggy!!

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Weekend Devotion:

Third Sunday of Advent

Welcome to the third Sunday of Advent. I hope you've been blessed by this tradition so far. I love seeing the candles burn down, creating a kind of stair step effect circling our wreath. Our excitement grows with each week as we watch the flames and anticipate lighting the Christ Candle. What a wondrous season. I pray for you that these last days before Christmas are filled with the joy of our Savior!

Third Sunday of Advent

Color: Purple or Pink
(special thanks to Peggy for finding out the pink candle was instituted by the Catholic church in honor of the Lenten tradition which uses a pink candle on the third Sunday of Lent.)
Theme: Joy
Suggested Scripture Readings:
Isaiah 35:10, Psalm 51:12, Hebrews 12:2, 1Peter 1:8

Lord Jesus, thank you for coming as a tiny baby so long ago so that we may know the joy of your salvation. Show us daily how to walk in obedience to your glorious and freeing ways, and to always be ready to share the source of this incredible joy with others. In Your Holy Name, Amen!


Praying and believing,
Dineen

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Chronicles of the Donovan Clan

NEVER in a million years.

I want to tell you about a tiny miracle that unfolded yesterday. It may not seem like a big deal to you. However, I just can't stop thinking about the lengths our God goes through to delight us. How He never forgets dreams we once dreamed and have long since forgotten. I am overwhelmed to experience His love is such a special and personal way.

Many, many years ago I had a secret dream. You know, one of those seemingly silly daydreams but something you actually wish could become a reality. A long time ago, I dreamed my husband would come to faith and we would serve together in some pastoral capacity for our church.

Okay, laugh it up. But a girl can dream, can't she.

I would daydream what it would be like to work with other believers daily at church. I thought about what it would feel like to spend time at gatherings with the church leadership, pastors, elders, and people who basically spent most of their time serving the church body. I surrendered that dream willingly and without bitterness many years ago and have not thought about it again until last night at around 12:30 am.

You see, yesterday evening I attended my very first Church Staff Christmas party. Guess what? My husband, my unbelieving husband, attended with me.

Miracles of miracles, I tell you!

Who would have thought that I would ever be on staff at a church serving my Lord? Never in a million years would I have thought this dream of being part of a church staff would come true.

In fact, I completely forgot about this once held dream until the Lord reminded me in the middle of the night.

"Lynn, I never forget your dreams. I fulfilled this tiny hope in your life just because I love you." God

What amazes me further is how God is always unconventional. He worked this out in an unexpected way. It wasn't my husband, but me, who joined the church staff. Of course this was not how I envisioned this dream unfolding. But.... there I was standing beside my husband, enjoying friendship and laughter at a church leadership function.

At 12:30 this morning I was overwhelmed by God's amazing love as He whispered to my heart, "I did this for you."

He delights in making dreams come true, even those long forgotten, silly, dreams of our youth.

Christmas-wreath

Chronicles continue.... I am still trying to get my head around the fact that my unbelieving husband went to a church staff Christmas party. The irony of it all tickles my soul and makes me giggle.

Be Blessed, Lynn

PS. More chronicles are ahead. Hold on to your hats and be ready to proclaim the glory of the Lord!

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Thankful Thursday...

A Dream Come True

Hi, My Thankful Thursday Buddies,
 
I just can't tell you how thankful I am for all good things from God above. Tomorrow, I have a post about a long lost dream that I had completely forgotten but a dream the Lord never forgot.
 
It came true.
 
And at 12:30 am the Lord woke me from my sleep just to tell me He fulfilled that dream....
 
I am utterly and deeply humbled that God, Almighty, would love little ole me so much to make my dreams come true, then remind me that He knows my every dream and fulfills them just because he loves me. Stop by tomorrow.
 
Also, I am deeply thankful the Lord was honored through our Women's Christmas Dessert at our church. It was the best and people found Jesus there for the very first time. Also, women rededicated their lives to Him and many were prayed over. God is moving in this world girls. I am convinced a profound reawakening is on the horizon. Many in the months ahead will come to know Jesus.
 
Have a beautiful and blessed Thankful Thursday. Be Blessed, Lynn
 
 
 


For more Thankful Thursday blessings, visit Iris at Grace Alone.

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Google Maps....

.....and an ordinary woman.

Do you hope God will use you to do something extrodinary in your life? Do you ever wonder why it seems He picks others to do really BIG things and not you? 

Hop over to Laced With Grace for a story and an invitation to do really BIG things.


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Peace in the House at Christmas

IMG_0366 I remember in years past thinking of Christmas and Easter as two very separate events. I understood the connection—why Christ came—yet now, after many years walking with God and delving into the rich layers of his word, I've come to see how the salvation journey Jesus walked began at Christmas. Christ came as a child so that we could identify with him and believe he understood our condition as humans because he became one from start (as a baby) to finish (as a man tried, scorned, and crucified).

He was a man born with a purpose, and a God driven by love. And just like God created his son for a purpose, he created us to have purpose as well. Not always an easy thing to do in an unequally yoked marriage.

I don't know about you, but Christmas tends to be one of the more stressful times in my unequally yoked marriage. There are more activities at church to celebrate, including a Christmas Eve service. But when your spouse has no interest in these events, it can be tough. Most of the time I forgo the Christmas Eve service because I know it's important to my sweet hubby that we all be together as a family.

So, I'd love to hear how you handle these kinds of conflicts at Christmas and manage to make it work. I know I'm not the only one out there trying to keep peace in the household.

How do you keep Jesus as the "reason for the season?" 
Praying and believing,
Dineen

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Marriage Idol - Unforgiveness

I re-read the post from Friday (see it here).

The more I thought about this woman, the more I thought...... What is really going on here?

You know me, I keep it real. I can actually understand how this woman could feel cheated. She feels persecuted for her faith. He spouse belittles her because she is "weak-minded."

I can almost see the battle lines drawn in the invisible sand in their marriage. Can you? He stands upon atheism and she stands across the room on her hilltop of faith. No one is inclined to give an inch. Too much pain and hurt has passed between them. He is afraid of this invisible Man in her life. He can compete with that. She is angry he refuses to understand her, intimacy is denied.

Soon disguised walls, thicker than block concrete are erected on the hilltops. No one is willing or able at the point, to tear the walls down and make inroads to peace, let alone being to thrive.

I ask, "Can anyone relate?" I do.

If we read between the lines in this very real scenario I wonder if we see the root of this idol. And, if we can see the cause is there a path to freedom and happiness?

Well I am so glad you asked....

It is all about forgiveness and it begins with us, the Christian.

It took me a long time to realize I was angry with my spouse. I held a list of grievances a mile long in my head. I wanted justice for these hurts. I wanted an apology for the sharp words that were a direct hit upon my heart. I wanted pain for my pain.

I am sure the walls in our marriage were quite tall before The Redeemer arrived. What I have learned living all these years in an unequally yoked marriage is this: my spouse was not likely to change. If our marriage was going to ever change, it had to start with me. Christ would no longer allow me to be a martyr in our marriage. He demanded I forgive my husband whether he deserved it or not.

Forgiving my husband was difficult. I didn't want to at first. But, through my morning prayer time, I asked God to help me to want to forgive. Thus, the process started. Daily I would hand over my hurt and anger. I literally had to say, out loud at times, "I forgive him for......"

Only after I began to experience a heart change through the power of Jesus Christ, my husband began to change. As believers, we must surrender first. We have the capacity and power to do so through Christ. Is it fair. No. But, if we want to flourish in our marriage it is the ONLY way to get there.

We are empowered and able to forgive our unbelieving spouse. We need only ask.

Lord Jesus, today we approach your throne in humility. Show us where we are harboring unforgiveness in our souls. Let us confess it to you and ask you to remove our anger and bitterness for each deed. Lord, when we feel hurt, teach us how to turn it over to you. Teach us how to love our spouse unconditionally. Teach us to be Jesus to our spouse, our children, and the world in need of forgiveness. In Christ's name, Amen.

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Weekend Devotion — Advent

In my churches in Memphis and Zürich, we always had an advent wreath. I loved the lighting of the candles so much, that I adopted the tradition as my own. Each year, around Thanksgiving, I find the candles for our wreath. I'm a little behind this year and didn't realize the first Sunday of Advent hit the end of November, but I still would love to share this tradition with you.

Advent means "coming" or "arrival." So appropriate. And I just love the way each candle counts down the time to our Saviour's birthday. Both my girls were born in December, so it's a very special (and extremely busy) month. This tradition and an Advent Christmas tree quilt I created have helped my girls and I count down the days each December.

I've heard and read several interpretations of the wreath. Here are few of my favorite aspects:

  • The green of the wreath represents the eternal life we have in Christ.
  • The circular form of the wreath represents the unending love of God.
  • The purple of the outer candles represents the royalty of royalty.
    (Sometimes the third or fourth candle is pink.)
  • The white of the center candle represents Christ's purity.
    (This candle is optional, by the way, but my favorite.)
  • The flames represent the light of God coming into the world through his Son.

We'll play catch up this weekend and then the following weekends I'll post another picture of our wreath along with the meaning of each candle. I hope you'll join my family and me in this wonderful tradition that exemplifies Jesus as the reason for the season.

First Sunday of Advent
Color: Purple
Theme:
Hope
Suggested Scripture Readings:
Isaiah 60:2-3, Romans 15:13, Titus 1:2, Hebrews 6:19

Precious Lord, we thank You for sending your son Jesus to be a light in a world of darkness, a light that never goes out or burns away. Teach us to place our hope in You and to share it with those struggling in hopeless situations. In Christ's Name, Amen.



Second Sunday of Advent

Color: Purple
Theme: Love
Suggested Scripture Readings: 1John 4:7-19, John 3:16-17

Father, you sent us the greatest gift and representation of your eternal love when you sent your Son as a tiny baby for the sole purpose of his sacrificial death. Help us to be shining examples of your love in a hurting world. And let us never forget this sacrifice and the amazing depth of your love. We love you so much. In Christ's Holy Name, Amen!




Enjoy!
Praying and believing,
Dineen

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Is Your Marriage an Idol?

Dee: I'm thinking as I type & I have a couple of questions.....perhaps you can help me...

Recently, a lady shared (this is not verbatim & this lady is not from 1P3), that she prays she will not make her unequally yoked marriage into an idol. My first thought and question is what does that exactly mean? I have an idea of what that means, but can someone clearly define this for me? This topic is a bit fuzzy to me and a clear definition and or examples would be helpful.

Also, do you think that there is a fine line here? How do you know when you've crossed the line from ________ (fill in the blank please) to making the spiritual status of your marriage into an idol?

Last question, this may be difficult to answer and forgive me if I am getting too personal; if you are willing to share, have you ever made your unequally yoked marriage into an idol? When did you come to that realization?


Several days ago the crowd at 1Peter3Living discussed the questions above. I wanted to share a reply which stopped me in my tracks:

The question posed today about making our unequally yoked marriages an idol stopped me to cause and think about some women in my support group I attend weekly at a local church.

Their story is always how they are in this terrible marriage with a person who mocks their faith and makes their Christian life miserable. To be honest, sometimes I think if this one certain woman stands up with her story one more time I'm gonna scram and bounce off the walls.

I thought it was just me who always had a bathroom urge when she stood up, till I noticed 9 of the 12 women in the group were in the bathroom with me.

I think this woman is an example of someone who uses her marriage as an idol.

She never wants to take steps towards correcting the "Bad", which from her stories she has quite a hand in creating. She doesn't care much for thoughts and advise of the groups, which she says she is seeking.

It is as if the marriage is her cross to bear and she relishes in the martyrdom and sympathy she receives from every one she meets.

Even in an unequally yoked marriage there has to be something we like, some kind of redemption.*

I wonder how many women you know think of their husband as "their cross to bear." Let's be real here. All of us have days where our marriage is a struggle. So where is the fine line? When does this example become an idol? Can you give me scripture?

I have so much more to say about this and a ton more stories to tell. Of course, this is one of the busiest few weeks of my year. I will be MCing and event tonight, whisper a prayer that I don't get shaky (thanks). I will be back with you Monday to continue this discussion. I think it would be a great time to have a check-up on our marriage and perhaps plan for some changes in the New Year.

Leave me your thoughts. Be Blessed, Lynn

*Shared with permission

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THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

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Thankful Thursday


What a busy couple of weeks! I have a TON of things to be thankful for.
 
My Mom and son visited last week. Okay, we ate turkey, watched movies, played several rounds of cards, (my son ALWAYS wins) and we laughed...
 
We laughed and giggled and snorted until I thought I would pee my pants. We are one zany family.... What a hoot!
 
God is so very good!!!
 
This week I am also thankful for my Church, Sunridge Community Church. Our annual Women's Christmas Dessert is Friday. I look forward to this evening every year. I am deeply thankful for the friendships I share there.
 
I am also humbled and thankful we are celebrating the birth of Jesus. This tiny baby became my Savior and yours too.
 
Be Blessed, Lynn

For more Thankful Thursday blessings, visit Iris at Grace Alone.

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THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

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What is Laminin?

According to Wikipedia, Laminin is "vital to making sure overall body structures hold together." Watch this nine minute clip on YouTube by Louie Giglio. You will be amazed!

If you read the description on Wikipedia, I hope you noticed how it described the longer arm as an anchor. Like the cross of Christ was anchored to the ground, so we are anchored in him. Again I am absolutely amazed and in awe of God's multilevel meaning to everything he creates. That's visible proof of his perfect omniscience, in my opinion. God is so very good!

Praying and believing,
Dineen

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THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

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Marriage Monday

And a ton of other stuff.....

Wow, Thanksgiving has past. I hope your day was filled up to running over with joy, grace, and a couple of naps. We have so much to talk about today.

First, over the last week several more stories arrived from our Kingdom Assignment. I tear up over each one. These are fantastic accounts of ordinary people committing a dollar to our Great Big God and the extraordinary results. Find the stories on the Kingdom Page in the sidebar. Thank you again everyone who has written so far. In addition, I am still receiving requests and mailing out assignments. God wants to touch a few more hearts. I can't wait to see what He does in our lives this week.

Onward,

Today is Marriage Monday. Our topic, The Sanctuary of Christian Marriage. Ooooo, this topic brings several thoughts to my mind. I know it can also stir up frustration because our marriage is not a safe harbor for our faith. Let's take a look.Marriage-Monday-Small

Before we do, I want to remind you we will answer the tough questions from last week, Is Your Marriage an Idol? (Read the questions here) Tune in Friday. You will be pushed to think hard about your marriage relationship checking to see if there is an idol lurking in the dark corners of your heart, or perhaps even a martyr???

Sanctuary: A place of refuge

Human beings are desperate to have a place of refuge. We crave a place a person with whom we can be ourselves --our authentic self. And we want to know another human intimately. Trust, friendship, love, commitment. Sharing these emotional bonds with our spouse fills our lives with peace and contentment.

This is marriage designed by our Lord. I am overwhelmed time and again when I think about God's design for marriage and family. He is BRILLIANT! God places us into this most intimate relationship to teach us about ourselves, our spouse and especially about Him. I am a living testament to the fact that marriage is one of God's greatest character development tools.

My marriage has given me the practice grounds to learn trust. Many sharp edges in my temperament are now smooth from the filing through give-and-take within our relationship. God continues to teach me about authentic friendship, love without condition and life-long commitment through my unbelieving spouse.

Our marriage experienced its rocky years. Both my husband and I are strong willed people. God knew what He was doing. I needed a man who would completely discombobulate my life so that Jesus could rebuild it.

Today, our marriage is a soft spot to land. For me. For my husband.

It's a safe harbor because Jesus lives in me.

Have an awesome week. Be Blessed, Lynn

For more Marriage Monday hop over to Embracing Him.

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Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

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