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22 entries from March 2009

The Question of the Ages

In Judges 6:13, Gideon asks God the question of the ages. "But sir," Gideon replied, "if the Lord is with us, why has all this happened to us?" If we haven't asked it as some point in our lives, even as Christians, we've most definitely wondered about it. Why does God let bad things happen to his people? And if you've walked this journey of faith for any length of time, you've come to understand God uses all these times in our lives to refine us and those around us. But when the fire gets hot, we doubt, question, and even become angry. If you read further, Gideon reminds God of his past rescues of the Israelites. Gideon wants to know what happened to that God of all the wonders passed down through the generations. We do that too, don't we? We look back at the past and see where... Read more →

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What About the Kids?

My daughter AND my husband attended church with me yesterday. As the pastor stepped up to begin his message, he picked up a rope. He then asked one of the guys seated up front to take the other end of the rope and start walking out of the sanctuary. This yellow rope began to stretch out across the entire room. The guy holding the rope left the room, started walking down the long hallway, and proceeded to walk to exit the front door. All the while the pastor hung on to the other end of the rope. The rope finally tightened. The pastor then pointed out a small piece of blue tape, no bigger than an inch, wrapped around the end of the rope he held in his hand. This demonstration was an analogy of time and eternity. The long rope represented eternity. The piece of tape, our lifetime, 80... Read more →

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Weekend Devotion — Developing a Persistent Love

In keeping with our theme this week of "not giving up," Lynn and I thought this devotional by Rick Warren was great! We hope it blesses you as it did us. Praying and believing, Dineen Developing a Persistent Love by Rick Warren "Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance" (1 Corinthians 13:7 NLT). Love can be absolutely exhausting. Don't let anyone fool you. The kind of love that really makes a difference in this world will zap everything out of you. Sometimes you just don't feel like you have any more love to give. Maybe you're in a people-intensive job—such as teacher, salesman, or waitress—and you come home and think, "I just can't face another need, another problem, or another heartache." So you just shut down. Or you need to show love to a particular person who is demanding, selfish, and never... Read more →

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Spiritual Leadership and the Heebie Jeebies

Jesus said: Luke 6:41 “And why worry about a speck in your friend’s eye when you have a log in your own? 42 How can you think of saying, ‘Friend, let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye,’ when you can’t see past the log in your own eye? Hypocrite! First get rid of the log in your own eye; then you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friend’s eye.” Why, do we constantly feel the need to change our spouse? Okay, perhaps it’s only me, but I don’t think I am alone. Often in my conversations with believers I discover that we, women, want our husbands to be the… -spiritual leader of the household. Shudder… Those few words can give me the heebie jeebies. Spiritual expectations create a ton of unhappiness in our married relationship. Okay, I know I have... Read more →

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Thankful Thursday - Random

It's Thankful Thursday once again. Can you believe we have been meeting here for a month already? I have been richly blessed to recieve your thankful hearts here on Thursday. Remember during the month of April, we will all be meeting at Laurie's place, Women Taking a Stand. This week I am thankful for a bunch of random stuff. * Spring flowers * I planted my vegtable garden this week * God's Word. It is the only source or real joy in this life. * Friendships * My husband * My kids * My church What are you thankful for this week? I hope to be over to visit you soon. Also, tickets have gone on sale for A Woman Inspired Conference. I hope you can meet me there on Wednesday, April 8th at 9:30 PST. Have a blessed week. Praising the Lord today, Lynn Read more →

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What's Your Story?

For the last two days I've read the story of Zechariah and his prophecy at the end of Luke 1. As a writer of fiction too, I tend to put myself in these stories and imagine the scene, the character motivations, and what those around them must have thought. Well, my writer brain wound up stuck in this story for two days! First of all, I got a chuckle out of the people signing at Zechariah to ask what he wanted his son named. The man was mute, not deaf. (Hee hee...) But how real to life is that? It's like someone speaking really loud to a person who doesn't understand English. Like the higher volume will help them suddenly understand the language. But what really ran deep with me in this story was the time line. For thousands of years, the Jews lived with the Messianic prophecies as something... Read more →

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Chronicles of the Donovan Clan -
Didn't See THIS Comin'.

When do we give up hope? Most of you know my husband became unemployed like millions of others in January. Unemployment can really shake a man up. It’s a blow to the psyche. My husband’s shake-up propelled him to attend church with me back then. He astonished me further when he joined me during Wednesday evening Life Group discussions. However, my man’s fervor to investigate Christianity has vanished. In fact, his church attendance has dwindled and he has completely quit Wednesday evenings. As I type these words, I am puzzled. What happened? What didn’t happen? How could his interest fade this quickly? What did I do wrong? Didn’t do right? Of late, I have pondered these difficult questions: Will he ever be saved? Am I a fool to hope? How should I pray? His salvation or for my endurance? -- Just keepin’ it real here. I may become discouraged about... Read more →

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Marriage: Contract or Covenant?

Today is the last day of The Love Dare. If you've followed us over at 1Peter3Living, then congratulations for journeying through 40 days of dares. If you've read the book, or are reading it, on your own, congrats to you too for investing in your marriage. As I think back over the last 40 days, three points in this book stand out for me. One, love is a choice. Lately God is showing me the strength in choice. I talked about this in last week's devotional. The second is that you must lead your heart, not let it lead you. So true. We simply need look at the world to see what happens when the heart leads. In the secular world, we tend to think the heart only capable of good and therefore a good judge, but those of us revealed in the light of God know full well how... Read more →

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Most Unusual Birthday Gift

I remember a chat I had with Rebecca Saville, Psychologist and contributor here at Spiritually Unequal Marriage, several moths ago. We were talking about men and women and about how we view change in our marriage relationship in very different ways. She said this: A woman marries a man thinking she can change him. A man marries a woman thinking she will never change. -They’re both wrong. Most of us learn the reality of this truth the hard way. I know I did. I write frequently about change and releasing unrealistic expectations. Most of you know my personal story and how my marriage changed when I allowed Jesus to change me first. However changing doesn't always have to be about us. It is not wrong to want our spouse to change in some areas, especially to have a heart-change and become a believer. There are opportunities where we can gently... Read more →

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Thankful Thursday - We Are Free!

Isaiah 61 The Year of the LORD's Favor 1 The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners We serve a God of miracles. In the past week, I have watched as God changed the lives of friends for eternity. I have witnessed marriages revived and on the road to healing. I have witnessed those held captive by lies - set free. I am praising Jesus for He has come to bind up the brokenhearted, proclaim freedom for the captives, and release the prisoners from darkness. How has Jesus freed you? I can’t wait to read your posts about your struggle and your freedom. Girls, someone will read your story and they too will be... Read more →

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My Life with a Non-believer by Leslie Miller

Yesterday when I asked my daughter what I should write about this week, she offered to write it for me. So, without further ado, my precious (15 and still recovering) daughter Leslie... Growing up with a mother who is Christian and a father who is an atheist isn't always easy. I always look at him and think in my mind, "How can he not be Christian?" He's always kind to others and handles things with grace. He barely ever looses his temper. It was and still is hard for me to understand why he isn't a believer. My mother handles this with such grace, it amazes me. She has told me before that it's not always easy, but she will not stop trying because she loves him. I never really talk to my dad about it. I don't like to make him uncomfortable. I do show him that I am... Read more →

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Great Marriage Quotes

Ya'll are wise. Have I told you that lately? Well, you amaze me. Your advice and wisdom with regard to the Affair post last week was spot on! Today, I need some more of your mental power. Mostly, I need some of your Holy Spirit inspired advice. I am working on my speaking outline for A Woman Inspired Conference. I thought it would be fun to add some quotes and some words of wisdom. I can’t think of a better place to find inspiration than from you… So, please have mercy on my blonde brain and share your wisdom about marriage. Share a quote about marriage that inspires you or that shares Biblical truth. What is the best piece of advice you’ve been given about marriage. Or, tell me what God has taught you about this amazing relationship, marriage. I can’t wait! I want to share your wisdom. Is that... Read more →

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Weekend Devotion — God's Power

For God is working you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases Him. — Philippians 2:13 I have this verse written on a bright green Post-It note stuck on my computer. I pray it at least once a day because I want this dearly, especially in a couple areas of my life in which I struggle. This verse speaks to me of God's ability to bring change in our hearts to accomplish what we can't alone. It's speaks to me of God's tremendous grace that even in the things we struggle with in stubbornness and disobedience, we can go to him for help. In fact, we have to in order to really accomplish anything. If we could do this stuff on our own power, then Jesus never needed to die. Sobering thought. And a comforting one. I know how weak I am, and I fail so... Read more →

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An Affair? Facebook?

Do you think you could never have an affair? I know this question appears outlandish. However, I want to tell you a story. FACEBOOK: Write On my wall: Hi Tina, I found you through our High school link in Facebook. Wow, your picture is gorgeous! How are you doing? What are you doing? I am settled in well with my medical practice. Yes, I went to med school in California and returned here to practice. I can’t wait to hear from you. Boy, did we have great fun at the football games. Write me. HIS WALL: Hi, Wow, I am so glad you found me. I knew you would end up in med school. I am doing great. I was thrilled you wrote me. I always wondered what you were doing. I sometimes think about what life would have been if we had stayed together. You know, I honestly have... Read more →

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Thankful Thursday - Epic Story

When we trust our lives to the hand and pen of an unseen but ever-present God, He will write our lives into “His story” and every last one of them will turn out to be a great read. With a grand ending. -Beth Moore We are living, out loud, the grandest drama ever. Real-life far exceeds anything Hollywood will ever dream up. Living for Jesus Christ is exhilarating, challenging, difficult, rewarding, awesome, and certainly NEVER boring. Jeremiah 1:5 5 "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations." Our destiny is not left to chance. Our lives are vital. We are all players in this grand drama, penned before time began. I am thankful I serve the Master Author. What is He writing in your life today? What are you thankful for... Read more →

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God's Pursuit

One of my daily devotionals talked today of how God sought Adam and Even in the garden after they had eaten of the tree of knowledge. I've read that many times before but never thought about beyond what Adam and Eve had done. They hid, ashamed of their nakedness and afraid to face God. Have you ever read that and wished they'd just told God what happened instead of hiding? I guess if faced with the great "I Am," I'd hide too. Then God shows up (as if he ever really left) and calls to them. "Where are you?" (Genesis 3) I'm thinking God knew exactly where they were, and what they had done. He's omniscient, after all. But here's where this devotional commentary had something new to add. Despite Adam and Eve's decision to sin, God still sought their presence. He didn't just strike them dead, wipe his hands,... Read more →

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I Have Smelly Feet

I have typed then deleted this post several times. I hesitate to share the story I am about to tell. It is personal and intimate and it may make you feel uncomfortable. But for the first time a portion of scripture became alive to me. I experienced what Jesus experienced. I hope I can share this story and convey it properly, in a way that honors Christ and not me. I hope by the end that you will catch a glimpse of yourself through the eyes of Jesus...... Would you allow me to serve you. I would be so humbly honored if you would. Join me at Laced With Grace. Be Blessed, Lynn Read more →

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Weekend Devotion — Knowing God

From now on if you listen obediently to the commandments that I am commanding you today, love God, your God, and serve him with everything you have within you, he'll take charge of sending the rain at the right time .... Deuteronomy 11:13-14 (MSG) God is all about timing. He knows the big picture, so of course he knows when to send the rain. God made this promise to the Israelites in regards to their crops, telling them if they obey, he would send what they needed to flourish. And He asks us to do our part by being obedient and to trust him. That's not always easy though, is it? We're impatient creatures all to used to getting what we want when we want it. Waiting has almost become a bad word in today's culture. Fast food, fast service, speed dating...our society is all about getting whatever we want... Read more →

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Thankful Thursday

Wisdom

Welcome to Thankful Thursday. I will be co-hosting this event along with Laurie from Women Taking A Stand. Find Thankful Thursday here in March. In April we will head over to Laurie’s. On this Thankful Thursday, I give thanks to the Lord for Iris. Iris from Grace Alone has hosted this important event for years. She thoughtfully put together post after post, each week to encourage us and to help us focus on the blessings the Lord pours into our lives. Iris, this time away is part of the Lord’s plan for your life. I can’t wait to see what he has in store for you. I am so thankful for you and your friendship. BIG HUGS! This morning my mother telephoned me. I was barely awake. I picked up the phone slightly worried because she never calls very early. I have a terrible cold so I could barely croak... Read more →

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A Bumpy Ride

I just got back from a trip to Colorado. On the way there, I experienced the "rocky-ride" due to turbulence from flying over the Rocky Mountains. I planned for this on the way home so as to avoid an upset stomach. Unfortunately, what I didn't expect was a bumpy ride back into San Jose because of a storm front. (I'm still waiting for my stomach to catch up. I think it took a nosedive somewhere over Nevada.) Isn't marriage like that too sometimes? Past experience helps us anticipate the bumps of the future, but what about those unexpected roller coaster rides that take us totally by surprise? A health issue, a financial crisis, infidelity... In the past I've firmly believed that there's a solution to any problem we are faced with—we simply need to find that answer and implement it. (Are you laughing at me yet?) Truly, I really do... Read more →

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The Soap Cup and a Rapture -
Marriage Monday

I pulled into the garage this afternoon after visiting the Farmer’s Market and snagging a frozen vanilla yogurt cone from Golden Spoon. The temperature outside was a magnificent 84˚. My daughter tagged along. We chatting about everything and nothing. As the garage door rolled up I spied my husband in the laundry room which is actually a hallway from the garage to the house. Okay, I admit it. My guy is a treasure. He does the laundry….. Every week….. Can I get an Amen! My teenager and I walked into the small room. “Wait!” my husband insisted. “I have been waiting for you to get home.” I shot a sideways glance at Caitie, wondering, What in the world????? Which prompted my obvious response, “Whyyyyyyyy” I spoke slowly, cautiously. Wondering if I might be facing trouble. Naw, I couldn’t be in the doghouse. After all, I remembered to bring home a... Read more →

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Do Your Prayers Do Any Good?

by: Amy Forbes Do you ever wonder whether your prayers for your spouse are doing any good? Are they effective? Is God hearing you? Here are some tips from "What happens when Women pray" by Evelyn Christenson: Plug into God's power - don't plan just pray! If we could learn to pray first and plan afterward how different our homes, our churches, our Christian women's clubs, our bible studies etc whatever we are doing for Christ would be so different. Maybe we are planning in one direction and God's will is in another direction. Hindrances to prayer - "If I cherish evil in my heart, the Lord will not hear me" Psalm 66:18. God didn't release us to pray for other needs until we had cleaned up our own lives by confessing our sins first. We prayed and prayed and God kept bringing sins to our minds. God kept bringing... Read more →

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