44 posts categorized "Current Events"

Politics is the New Bullying

Politics is the new Bullying

Last week our country suffered under full assault from the mudslinging, contentious and outright mean barrage of campaign commercials. As I watched with repulse on one specific evening I felt a smack in the face with a blaringly obvious irony. Let me explain.

A week, prior to the election, I planted myself on the couch to watch a national news broadcast. At the top of the broadcast, the main stories were ticked off as a teaser. On this particular evening, the first story slated intended to detail the nastiness of the political campaigns and the commercials that stream, non-stop, during the two weeks leading to the election. A few other stories were touted and then the end of the broadcast would be specifically dedicated to the story of our nation’s growing problem of bullying in our public schools.

I watched the broadcast unfold and could only think to myself, “Am I the only one that sees the irony here?”

California was ground zero for some of the worst campaign vilification in the nation. The media flashed these “attack ads” (their label not mine) displaying political candidates spewing slanderous words about their opponent. All the talking heads fed off the negativity and the entire two weeks felt like soul torture. Attack ads

Well on this particular newscast, I watched this top story of attack ads and then a few Viagra commercials. Finally, the story arrived at the end of the broadcast of epidemic badgering and bullying on school campuses. Children taunting other kids at school with hateful, hurtful words that then left the campus and continued their hatefulness using email and the ever-dangerous texting. Almost all school-aged kids have either been a bully or have been the recipient of a bullying or have been party to both.

I have a teenager so I know just how destructive bullying is to the young psyche. For crying out loud, harsh words also hurt grownups. So as I watched the stories on this particular night my mind screamed:

Our children are learning bullying from the adults.

The pundits appear baffled by the increase in the severity and the frequency of childhood bullying in our nation. But, HELLO. They are watching it 24/7 in their very own home. And it’s the adults who are the perpetrators. Television and video games glamorize adult bad behavior and it just seemed to me as I watched the broadcast this night that the political ads are the pinnacle of public bullying. Our children are not only barraged by the media, they also are likely to experience it at home with their siblings and even their parents.

So what can we learn and teach our children from this irony.

1) We as adults must set the example. We can’t change the news but we can TURN IT OFF. I will share with you that in the past I was a news program junkie. I think I watched about three to four hours of news programing a day. TOXIC. I look back at that period and realize I was pouring lethal trash into my soul. Garbage instead of what was noble, pure, praiseworthy (Philippians 4:8) What lesson do you think your child would receive if you jumped off the couch, switched of the TV and said, “That is garbage and I won’t watch it.” Lead by example…. Not by words.

2) Find the remote and keep it close in hand. Mute, fast-forward and ignore the trash.

3) Take advantage of the “teachable moments” the election brings. Your kids will be voters soon. Teach them how to discover the truth. Show them how to select a candidate. Instruct them on what you look for and why you vote.

4) Vote. I will let you in on a little joke around our neighborhood. A few years ago while at a BBQ someone asked my husband and I, “So, do your votes cancel each other out?” I replied without hesitation, “You bet they do.” I said it proudly. Living in California, my Biblical views aren’t always popular but I vote for what I believe. I’m part of the process and my vote matters even if it’s only an example to my daughter.

5) Grasp every opportunity you have to praise your kids when they choose to be kind. Also, share with them stories and observations you have made where other kids were hurt by words and what likely happened to that child’s heart. Ask them how they would feel.

So much ugliness can transpire in a campaign season. Our nation divides and the enemy gloats. However, we need to remind our kids and ourselves that the important virtues in life are love, joy, peace, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. These are the character traits that, in the end, people admire and will eventually win others over. And more importantly, they are qualities which are pleasing to God.

Be blessed, Lynn

Philippians 4:8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.

*****

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MAJ Cover 100 size Thumb

Lynn has wonderfully mapped out the steps we all need to walk through to develop and grow this vital relationship with Him. This was the Lord’s intent for her transformation journey all along, and His intent for you too. Here she has spelled out the spiritual truths behind the principles and talked us through how she applied them. These truths are universally applicable to us all, though as the details of our lives, situations and hearts will be different, we will apply them differently. - Reader Review from Barnes & Noble.


Thankful Thursday - What's In Store?

Let us give thanks. It is Thankful Thursday.

I am thrilled to be hosting Thankful Thursday in April. Next month we will meet with Laurie at Women Taking A Stand and then in June we will share our thanks over at Iris of Grace Alone.

Can you believe five weeks have past us by? Say WHAT? 

What happened to April? 

ChickentopWOW, what a month. I shared with you my multiple neighbor encounters of God dealing with my pride while I was out walking the dog and how I was a chicken in the grocery story. 

Imported Photos 00023This month you lived my discovery of the baby bird egg and our Living Hope.

And on the first of April you joined me and a bunch of my friends for our Passover seder. 

Imported Photos 00009 

 

Wow, I’m humbled and thrilled to count you as my TT buddies and friends. Thank you for sharing your life with me. One day in heaven about 100 years from now, we will all sit together and talk about our many Thankful Thursday adventures. I can’t wait for that day my friends. I surely can’t wait. I have a bear hug for each of you. 

I now pass the hosting on to Laurie at Women Taking A Stand. We will meet there next week and I still plan to participate, and will catch up with you then. But for now, I leave you with some coming changes, events, a new series and a miracle. 

On May 3rd we will launch our new blog design. I love the rings and grass my friends but it’s time for a change. You will love our new look. Stop back on Monday. 

On Tuesday, we are launching a new series, Friendship With God. What does that really mean? How are we supposed to fear God as the Bible says yet be His friend. What does that friendship look like in 2010 and ultimately we will discover together a friendship so profound, we will never, ever feel alone again. How cool is that? God is writing this so stop back. 

On Wednesday, I am sharing a personal story of the supernatural. It really happened but it is so weird and different, I’m not sure what you will think. Please let me know if you get goose bumps or do an eye roll….. It’s fantastically strange. 

Finally on May 10th I am going to share my personal story at A Woman Inspired Conference, Who Killed Cinderella? You will want to see what really happened to our Princess. I hope you can tune in.

I am deeply thankful that God held my hand each day of the month of April. He is always near, teaching, correcting, astounding me and loving me to greater heights in His Kingdom. 

What are you thankful for this week? Write you post, link up and give glory to the name of Jesus for all He does in your life. Hugs, Lynn

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

MAJ Cover 100 size Thumb

Lynn has wonderfully mapped out the steps we all need to walk through to develop and grow this vital relationship with Him. This was the Lord’s intent for her transformation journey all along, and His intent for you too. Here she has spelled out the spiritual truths behind the principles and talked us through how she applied them. These truths are universally applicable to us all, though as the details of our lives, situations and hearts will be different, we will apply them differently. - Reader Review from Barnes & Noble.


CONFLICT ~

You can't live with him...You can't live without him.

I have been pondering conflict.

Not world conflict, nor social conflict but that personal, in-your-face, conflict in marriage. I guess my thoughts on conflict have surfaced because of my most recent exchange with my own mate. Remember Church or no-Church?

If you are married, you deal with conflict. After all, we are human, broken and flawed. What troubles me is so often conflict is avoided or handled inappropriately. Therefore, I think we need to take a look at some real situations and discover how conflict is handled appropriately and through the lens of the Bible.

As I was in my quiet time a few days ago, speaking to the Lord, the following found its way into my prayer journal:

I wonder if many of us have a view that as a Christian, we must be the spouse who refrains from conflict. It is our duty as a follower of Christ to always be the peace maker and give in to the demands of our spouse and don’t rock the boat?

There are scriptures that point to this conclusion:

Proverbs 13:3 3 Those who control their tongue will have a long life; opening your mouth can ruin everything.

Ephesians 4: 29 Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.

And then there is this one:

James 3:6 The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole person, sets the whole course of his life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.

Yikes!

It’s all so confusing.

There are times we should keep our mouth shut. Such was the case last week when my husband was moving slowly on Sunday morning and I thought we would be late to church, again. You may remember, I took control of my thoughts and then my mouth and said nothing. It was the right thing to do.

However, three weeks earlier the conflict that erupted between us in the most inopportune place and at the most in opportune time was necessary. Perhaps I could have made an issue of this growing church or no-church conflict at home later in the day. However, I am convinced the impact would have been feeble, my words ignored, and resolution of our differences would still be hanging out there.

People, there are times we not only need to rock the boat but we need to get out of the boat.

Now, don’t panic. You know I am not leading this conversation toward throwing in the towel. No, I want to look honestly at proper conflict and our responsibilities as believers in these unique marriages.

So how do we start to define this vast issue of conflict resolution? Let’s start with this; Is it Godly to draw the line in the sand?

What do you think?

Have a blessed week and stay tuned for more on CONFLICT, Can’t live with him. Can’t live without him.  Lynn

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

MAJ Cover 100 size Thumb

Lynn has wonderfully mapped out the steps we all need to walk through to develop and grow this vital relationship with Him. This was the Lord’s intent for her transformation journey all along, and His intent for you too. Here she has spelled out the spiritual truths behind the principles and talked us through how she applied them. These truths are universally applicable to us all, though as the details of our lives, situations and hearts will be different, we will apply them differently. - Reader Review from Barnes & Noble.


A Perfect Day... *grin*

Here it is....

Free To Be Me Social Network

Free to be Me Blog

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Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

MAJ Cover 100 size Thumb

Lynn has wonderfully mapped out the steps we all need to walk through to develop and grow this vital relationship with Him. This was the Lord’s intent for her transformation journey all along, and His intent for you too. Here she has spelled out the spiritual truths behind the principles and talked us through how she applied them. These truths are universally applicable to us all, though as the details of our lives, situations and hearts will be different, we will apply them differently. - Reader Review from Barnes & Noble.


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 probably offended you. Stay with me here. Let me state that it is correct thinking and Biblical to desire our man to be the spiritual leader of our family. I get it, really.

Where I see this go terribly wrong is what we as women “think” that leadership should look like. Do the words family devotions and leading prayer nightly and Bible discussions with the kids and, and, and… ring a bell? Yikes!

I know there are a few men out there that bring these qualities and activities to the home. They are actually rare from all my years in talking with Christian women. If you have a man like this, kneel down right now and give thanks to God.

For the rest of us. Relax.

Why do you wait for your husband to lead devotions? Where did this expectation come from?

I would submit to you that men practice their faith differently than women.

Allow your husband to be who he is.

I know this, if my husband became an on fire believer tomorrow, he would never be comfortable enough to lead family devotions, and it would probably take him years just to pray out loud. I am okay with it. It doesn’t mean he would not be the spiritual leader of our home.

What Jesus calls us to see is our man’s fruit. Not just the man-(woman)-made suggestions of practicing faith. Take a step back. What is the fruit? What is in his heart for what is in the heart come out of the mouth. Look at his character. God cares so much for our character and a little less about leading family devotions.

Jesus said: Luke 6: 43 “A good tree can’t produce bad fruit, and a bad tree can’t produce good fruit. 44 A tree is identified by its fruit. Figs are never gathered from thornbushes, and grapes are not picked from bramble bushes. 45 A good person produces good things from the treasury of a good heart, and an evil person produces evil things from the treasury of an evil heart. What you say flows from what is in your heart.”

Perhaps this was a tough post. Perhaps you don’t agree. That’s is okay. I hope however, it causes you to think about the good fruit in your man today. Give him a break for the things he may not do and give him a hug for the fruit that is evident. Have a blessed Friday, Lynn

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

MAJ Cover 100 size Thumb

Lynn has wonderfully mapped out the steps we all need to walk through to develop and grow this vital relationship with Him. This was the Lord’s intent for her transformation journey all along, and His intent for you too. Here she has spelled out the spiritual truths behind the principles and talked us through how she applied them. These truths are universally applicable to us all, though as the details of our lives, situations and hearts will be different, we will apply them differently. - Reader Review from Barnes & Noble.


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 the timeline which I perceive as taking way to long. I may fail to pray faithfully. I may fail to model Jesus in my marriage. I might break down and lose hope for a moment.

 But…..

I am not a quitter. God is not a quitter!

I read a commentary last week that states; the whole Old Testament is about failures who didn’t quit. God can use a failure, but a quitter is someone He can’t use. God can use a failure. ~Robby Dawkins

Let those words sink in. God doesn’t care that I am not a perfect wife. He knows I struggle with snacking in the evening. He knows I will cut someone off in traffic. He knows I won’t always model the fruits of the spirit. He knows I will fail… (sometimes - daily hourly)

Our faithful King, picks me up, dusts me off and says, “That was another great lesson you learned, Lynn.” My thoughts are not your thoughts. My timing is not your timing. I have called you to trust. I have called you to pray. I have called you to never quit. Trust me and remember I have your best interests at heart.”

2 Corinthians 12:9 But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me.

We may fail sometimes, but we are not quitters. God never quits on us! God’s grace is sufficient! Be Blessed, Lynn

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

MAJ Cover 100 size Thumb

Lynn has wonderfully mapped out the steps we all need to walk through to develop and grow this vital relationship with Him. This was the Lord’s intent for her transformation journey all along, and His intent for you too. Here she has spelled out the spiritual truths behind the principles and talked us through how she applied them. These truths are universally applicable to us all, though as the details of our lives, situations and hearts will be different, we will apply them differently. - Reader Review from Barnes & Noble.


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! Heart+in+book

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 okay? Have a blessed week. Lynn

One of my favorite quotes:

A good marriage is the union of two forgivers. ~Ruth Graham

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

MAJ Cover 100 size Thumb

Lynn has wonderfully mapped out the steps we all need to walk through to develop and grow this vital relationship with Him. This was the Lord’s intent for her transformation journey all along, and His intent for you too. Here she has spelled out the spiritual truths behind the principles and talked us through how she applied them. These truths are universally applicable to us all, though as the details of our lives, situations and hearts will be different, we will apply them differently. - Reader Review from Barnes & Noble.


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: Facebook

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 missed you. I am kinda going through a tough time in my marriage and to see you name and message made me feel some happiness. I have a ton of fond memories of us in high school. Wow, would I love to see you again. Tell me more about yourself. Write me.

HER WALL: I am so sorry to hear you are in a tough place. I am also in a lonely place. I divorced last year. Man, it was ugly. I knew all along I missed out on the right girl, you. Hey, how about I give you a call and let’s catch up some more?

WARNING… WARNING…. WARNING….

Okay, my friends, this is how it happens. A casual online conversation with an old friend of the opposite sex. Facebook is a new phenomenon that is reconnecting people.

So can you tell me what went wrong here? What was Tina’s first mistake? What was her second? What should she have done?

DO YOU THINK THIS SCENARIO IS A REAL ISSUE? Be Blessed, Lynn

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

MAJ Cover 100 size Thumb

Lynn has wonderfully mapped out the steps we all need to walk through to develop and grow this vital relationship with Him. This was the Lord’s intent for her transformation journey all along, and His intent for you too. Here she has spelled out the spiritual truths behind the principles and talked us through how she applied them. These truths are universally applicable to us all, though as the details of our lives, situations and hearts will be different, we will apply them differently. - Reader Review from Barnes & Noble.


What are the Thoughest Things About Marrige?

This Winter my Bible study group is reading through the book of Esther with Beth Moore. Beth took a poll of her readers through her blog to prepare for her study. Her question, What are the three toughest things about being a woman.

During the video portion of the lesson this week, Beth said something which was of great interest to me. The overwhelming response to this question was the toughness of marriage. I guess I was surprised and yet not surprised. Successful marriage is hard work. Would you agree?

Today I would like to ask you for your help. I am preparing for a conference and would be so humbled if you would take just a minute to share with me your thoughts.

What are the three toughest things about marriage for you?

Please feel free to leave your comments with or without your name or email me privately. I am prompted by the Lord to take a fresh look at what we struggle with and how Jesus might lead us in the future here at Spiritually Unequal Marriage.

Thank you... Thank you... Thank you... Be Blessed, Lynn

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

MAJ Cover 100 size Thumb

Lynn has wonderfully mapped out the steps we all need to walk through to develop and grow this vital relationship with Him. This was the Lord’s intent for her transformation journey all along, and His intent for you too. Here she has spelled out the spiritual truths behind the principles and talked us through how she applied them. These truths are universally applicable to us all, though as the details of our lives, situations and hearts will be different, we will apply them differently. - Reader Review from Barnes & Noble.


The Chronicles - What Will this Wacky Family do next?

I am sitting in my office at 3:07 p.m. on Sunday afternoon. Less than five hours ago I was headed down the home stretch to the finish line of the Carlsbad Half Marathon.

Tada!

I did it. I ran 13 miles along the ocean with 8 to 10 thousand of my closest friends. Runners are a strange lot. I still can't figure out why I think this is fun....

Okay, I can barely move and my knee is throbbing but I DID IT. What amazes me further, I ran the entire way except to suck down water at each and every water station. Although, around mile ten I was tempted to call an ambulance. I hated mile eleven and thought I would surely die through mile twelve.

Have mercy!

My muscles are sore and I am a bit whinny so my family is constantly reminding me today that THIS WAS MY IDEA. My daughter looked at me over lunch and said, "Mom, let's remember this, shall we, the next time you talk about signing up again. However, I still feel.....good. I feel like I fought the good fight and prevailed.

2 Timothy 4:7 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.

I learned a few things while on this journey.

  • Train early and train often. I had to prepare for this event starting in September. We trained early 5:30 a.m. Three short runs 3-5 miles, three mornings a week, followed by a long run on Saturday 7-10 miles.
  • Share the pain and the victories with a friend. Imported Photos 00009 These are my friends, Karrie, Jolene, and Tanya. I love these women. They put up with me and my slow running for months. My BFF, Pam was injured and knocked out last month but she took time to telephone me shortly after I finished with an enthusiastic - Congratulations! Beth my other BFF checked on me yesterday and after I arrive home. God has given me such great friends. Most of these gals attend church with me.
  • Don't give up when you're tempted, hurting, and just plain beat up. I began praying around mile nine. By mile eleven, I was whispering between breaths, Philippians 4:13. By mile 12 my prayers consisted of, "Help me Jesus, Help me Jesus, Help me Jesus." He listened.
  • Imported Photos 00010 Finally, there are many others out there who need encouragement, and a little help and there were those who helped me. The water station people ROCKED. Local bands were stationed on the course playing music and half the town of Carlsbad came out to cheer and clap. They ROCKED. The other runners ROCKED.

What an experience!

Hebrew 12:1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.

I wonder if you, like me, see these lessons dovetail into our faith walk?

Commitment to God often requires we rise early and often to read and pray.  

Share the journey.....the pain and the joys.

Don't give up when you are temped, hurting and plain beat up. There are others who encourage and help us and we must do the same.

If you ask me today, "Would you run another marathon?" I would say, "Not a chance. Period. The end."

Imported Photos 00013 But one certain thing all my years of living with Jesus has taught me, never say never. Love all of you. Hope your week ROCKS and God surrounds you early and often as you share your life with those in your world who are on this race with you!

God bless, Lynn

Also, Marriage Monday arrives next week, February 2nd. And it will be hosted HERE. I can't wait. So sharpen that pen, I mean fingers and start typing. The Surprise of Christian Marriage is our topic and I know everyone is surprised by marriage. I want to hear your story. Thanks e-Mom.

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

MAJ Cover 100 size Thumb

Lynn has wonderfully mapped out the steps we all need to walk through to develop and grow this vital relationship with Him. This was the Lord’s intent for her transformation journey all along, and His intent for you too. Here she has spelled out the spiritual truths behind the principles and talked us through how she applied them. These truths are universally applicable to us all, though as the details of our lives, situations and hearts will be different, we will apply them differently. - Reader Review from Barnes & Noble.


Do you Have an Answer for the Hope You Have?

What Jersey are you wearing?
 
You know I am anxious to get rolling about this "Big" subject, defending our faith. You know, this subject is really about our identity in Christ. It is about courage, and how our faith grows over the years through study and real-life practice. I have been storing up words and thoughts since December to encourage you and help you navigate sharing your faith or at least standing confident in the truth. This is especially a sensitive area when answering the hard questions our spouse will ask.
 
Sometimes, however, I think as believers we could be better prepared to answer the questions about our beliefs. Because I was married to an agnostic for so many years, I know they need and honestly want answers that we are ill prepared to supply.
 
Let me be specific. Most of us learn our faith from our churches. Our Bibles, the infallible word of God, is our final source and truth about all things. But, how can you talk with unbelievers when they deny the Bible as a viable source of evidence? Okay, sometimes we just say, it is a matter of faith. But, often times I think we can offer sound and principled arguments to support our faith.
 
One of the best examples of defending the faith in the face of unbelievers and remain credible was aired on NBC Nightline. Rick Warren of Saddleback Church offers a fantastic defense of marriage that holds water not only on a Biblical basis but also as to those who don't believe in the Bible.
 
I bring this video forward to help you be prepared for the next time you are in a place to stand up for the truth. The truth is God created marriage, it is ordained by God and it is the best thing for the individual, the family and our society. Although this video is titled, Rick Warren on gay marriage, what I found is this: It is not so much about gay marriage but is an intelligent and strong argument for the defense of traditional, Biblical marriage.
 
 
 
What do you think? Be Blessed, Lynn

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

MAJ Cover 100 size Thumb

Lynn has wonderfully mapped out the steps we all need to walk through to develop and grow this vital relationship with Him. This was the Lord’s intent for her transformation journey all along, and His intent for you too. Here she has spelled out the spiritual truths behind the principles and talked us through how she applied them. These truths are universally applicable to us all, though as the details of our lives, situations and hearts will be different, we will apply them differently. - Reader Review from Barnes & Noble.


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!

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

MAJ Cover 100 size Thumb

Lynn has wonderfully mapped out the steps we all need to walk through to develop and grow this vital relationship with Him. This was the Lord’s intent for her transformation journey all along, and His intent for you too. Here she has spelled out the spiritual truths behind the principles and talked us through how she applied them. These truths are universally applicable to us all, though as the details of our lives, situations and hearts will be different, we will apply them differently. - Reader Review from Barnes & Noble.


Trouble ~ Transition ~ Tension

Today is our conclusion to the Love Our Neighbor series. Walking through this scripture has left me permanently changed. My heart for people softened. This series brought with it the Kingdom Assignment. God gave us a chance to practice kindness, and goodness. He gave us a chance to be the hands and feet of Jesus. He watched, as we loved our neighbor.

This series unfolded Matthew 22:36-39 and Matthew 25: 14-30.

I understand this command in a way I never did before:

Matthew 22: 36 "Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?" 37Jesus replied: " 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' 38This is the first and greatest commandment. 39And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'

Our world reverberates with hate, bitterness, and broken dreams. When we give our love away a doorway opens. Kindness and compassion overcomes barriers, hatred, and anger.

It opens a door to share Jesus.

Today, right now in our country and in our world, doors are opening.

People come to know God usually through three circumstances; trouble, transition, and tension. The pressures of the terrible T's propel people to search for God. Our world is smack in the middle of all three. People are scared, they are in financial trouble, and tension mounts each day as we watch the nightly news.

Our opportunity is NOW.

From this day forward I will never be the same. I am going to live every day of my life, giving love away, opening the door for God. I will be obedient. I will be kind. I will live compassion. I will live for Jesus.

If we truly live in this kind of obedience, our unbelieving spouses, our children, our neighbors, the world will know there is a God and He lives and works in our lives.

Lord, this is my prayer for every reader who stopped here in the last few months. Let your Holy Spirit fill us so full, that kindness is in our every breath, love in our eyes, and compassion in our hearts. Let us live it. Let us be the door to share with this broken world the life-changing truth: OUR GOD SAVES! I ask this in the powerful, awesome, glorious name of Jesus, our Redeemer, and our Lord. Amen.

Please share with me what happened with your Kingdom Assignment. Whatever you did with your dollar is exactly what the Lord wanted. Don't judge it unworthy of mention. Allow the Lord Jesus to receive honor because you used God's money in some way to serve His kingdom. Write to me today a quick note. Please email me. You can read other's stories by going to the Kingdom Page through the link in the sidebar.

I am excited to see where the Lord will take us next. You should know I am always just as surprised by the Lord as you are when we walk through these journeys. Thank you for walking beside me. Your friendship, wisdom, and love are gifts I can never repay. But, I sure do tell my "Father" about all of you often. Have a blessed week, Lynn

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

MAJ Cover 100 size Thumb

Lynn has wonderfully mapped out the steps we all need to walk through to develop and grow this vital relationship with Him. This was the Lord’s intent for her transformation journey all along, and His intent for you too. Here she has spelled out the spiritual truths behind the principles and talked us through how she applied them. These truths are universally applicable to us all, though as the details of our lives, situations and hearts will be different, we will apply them differently. - Reader Review from Barnes & Noble.


It's In the Mail and...

Loving the Unlovely in our Lives

The Kingdom Assignment envelopes are going into the mail today. On Monday I will share the assignment here at Spiritually Unequal Marriage and some of the amazing stories of others who desired to honor Jesus and love their neighbor.

I hope you are moved and filled with ideas about your own assignment. Please (click here if you have not sent me your snail mail address.)

Loving the Unlovely in our Lives:

So , I have a question for you. Are you growing in your love for God and are you growing in your love for people?

Galatians 5:14 The entire law is summed up in a single command: "Love your neighbor as yourself."

Mathew 7:12 12So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.

I submit this statement for consideration: You only love Jesus as much as you love the most unattractive person you know.

Is this true? If it is true, how do we love that person who is a child abuser, or an ex-husband, a boss who is critical, a mother who is cold distant or even cruel. What about a spouse who hates Jesus?

How?

Looking forward to your wisdom and your scripture verses. Be Blessed, Lynn

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

MAJ Cover 100 size Thumb

Lynn has wonderfully mapped out the steps we all need to walk through to develop and grow this vital relationship with Him. This was the Lord’s intent for her transformation journey all along, and His intent for you too. Here she has spelled out the spiritual truths behind the principles and talked us through how she applied them. These truths are universally applicable to us all, though as the details of our lives, situations and hearts will be different, we will apply them differently. - Reader Review from Barnes & Noble.


Love Your Neighbor -
Kingdom Assignment

Matthew 5:16 In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.

I sat on my couch Tuesday morning with my steaming coffee and my bible. The sky outside was holding a tiny hint of light. It was early but I met my Savior to talk about what it means to really love our neighbor.

As I sat quietly, listening, the Lord said to me, “Make this real Lynn. Show the world that you, my children, love your neighbors. You know what to do.”

Whoa!

You know what?

I DO know what to do.

I immediately knew what to do.

We are all going to do it.

We are going to love our neighbor in such a blatant, radical way that the people in our home and our friends will always remember this assignment. Most importantly, we are going to love the world in such a way that the Name of Jesus is honored.

So get ready. We are going to be practical and real. Beginning November 1st we will affect change in our sphere of influence. You can involve your kids, your spouse, your community or keep this completely priviate between you and God. He will show each of us what, where and who.

Right now Jesus has prepared a Kingdom Assignment for you: It is in an envelope and ready to be mailed to your home. Inside this envelope is something very simple and very life-changing. This simple assignment will prompt you to show love to your neighbor.

This envelope contains a note from me which will take a couple of minutes to read. The Love Your Neighbor Assignment is simple and short. It will take as little or much time and effort that you are able to give.

This assignment is a surprise and I don’t want to share it here yet. Not until everyone has received his or her letter. The assignment is the same for each of us. However, I can assure you the results will be vastly different for all of us. I promise you this. If you accept this assignment, you will be used by the very hand of God and be forever changed by this experience. Don’t be worried or scared, trust the Lord to make, loving your neighbor, very real to you.

Are you willing to at least find out what it is? All you need to do is click here and email me your mailing address. I am the only one who will have your address and I promise I will not use it for anything other than to mail you one envelope.

We are approaching the Thanksgiving and Christmas Season. This assignment is subtle yet a powerful witness for Christ. We will thrill our kids and they will be in awe of our Lord. This is an opportunity to experience God. I promise, you will not be disappointed.

Your assignment is on the way. Email me today.

The catch? When you have completed your assignment, you are invited to share your experience with everyone here. Log on to the Love your Neighbor, Kingdom Assignment Page here at Spiritually Unequal Marriage and share what God does with this simple assignment. (Page will go up on November 1st.)

Let’s share how God moves in our lives. Share how God has affected your children's heart, your spouse, your friends and mostly your neighbors.

I will continue this series beginning Monday with some amazing teaching from; The Parable of the Good Samaritan.

God is so very good. Let’s let His light shine out through us in the Holiday Season. Be blessed, Lynn

Envelopeka_2

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

MAJ Cover 100 size Thumb

Lynn has wonderfully mapped out the steps we all need to walk through to develop and grow this vital relationship with Him. This was the Lord’s intent for her transformation journey all along, and His intent for you too. Here she has spelled out the spiritual truths behind the principles and talked us through how she applied them. These truths are universally applicable to us all, though as the details of our lives, situations and hearts will be different, we will apply them differently. - Reader Review from Barnes & Noble.


Loving the Unlovely in our Lives. Are you a Pharasee?

The Parable of the Good Samaritan
25 On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. "Teacher," he asked, "what must I do to inherit eternal life?"

26"What is written in the Law?" he replied. "How do you read it?"

27He answered: " 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind'; and, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'"

28"You have answered correctly," Jesus replied. "Do this and you will live."

29But he wanted to justify himself, so he asked Jesus, "And who is my neighbor?"

30In reply Jesus said: "A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he fell into the hands of robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. 31A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. 32So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. 34He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, took him to an inn and took care of him. 35The next day he took out two silver coins and gave them to the innkeeper. 'Look after him,' he said, 'and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.'

36"Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?"

37The expert in the law replied, "The one who had mercy on him."
Jesus told him, "Go and do likewise."

I wonder if the story of the Good Samaritan has become too familiar. Is there a possibility that we, the believers in Christ, have become Pharisees?

You probably figured out we would eventually land on this scripture. The posts and comments regarding Edgy Christianity have brought this conversation full circle. I am convinced that as believers married to unbelievers we must be extra sensitive to how we are viewed. Our spouses are watching. Are we walking the talk or just talking?

With that said, let’s look at this passage in the days ahead. What does it mean to love our neighbor? And by this question I mean, really love. Honestly, authentically, radically.

Are their loopholes in this passage? We are going to examine what Jesus says but more importantly what he does not say. So, buckle up and tune in on Friday. It is my sincere prayer that after this journey, our husband or wife will see us with new eyes. I want them to see Jesus and that He works. He is for real and can really change lives – OURS!

I want our spouses to see that we love people. The good, bad, and ugly. It is my deepest desire that we experience a radical change in our heart which is blaringly evident. So much so, that it rocks our spouse’s world. I am praying for this for you and for me.

Get your Bible out. Don’t let this story be familiar and get ready for an expedition into a new territory. A place where Jesus wants us to dwell. It is about love.

Be Blessed, Lynn

See you Friday!

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

MAJ Cover 100 size Thumb

Lynn has wonderfully mapped out the steps we all need to walk through to develop and grow this vital relationship with Him. This was the Lord’s intent for her transformation journey all along, and His intent for you too. Here she has spelled out the spiritual truths behind the principles and talked us through how she applied them. These truths are universally applicable to us all, though as the details of our lives, situations and hearts will be different, we will apply them differently. - Reader Review from Barnes & Noble.


On The Edge - NO MORE

The little boy shimmied off the tall bed down between Mom and Dad. He glanced over. Mom’s hands were folded together and resting on the quilt. Her eyes stayed closed as she leaned against the bed, crouching on her knees. A quick glance to the other side revealed
Daddy. His eyes were also closed, patiently waiting. He covertly watched Daddy from the corner of his eye and noticed Dad popped one eye open watching him settle into place. Daddy grinned as he finally settled on his knees.

Squeezing tiny eyes shut, the small boy spoke in a clear voice, “Dear Lord, please make all the bad people, good.

And Jesus please make all the good people, kind.”

Whoa!


Conditional or Unconditional… On the Edgy and Edgy…. Emerging and Finding.

Over the past few weeks the Lord set me on a path to reveal a few character issues I didn’t believe belonged to me. I began this journey a couple of weeks ago with a post regarding the newest books in the Christian book world. (read the original post, On The Edge…. click here)

The next thing to hit was a crash course on the Emergent Church. (click here)

The readers here at Spiritually Unequal Marriage – YOU- just amaze and inspire me in so many ways. I read each of your comments with an open heart. I found wisdom and much passion behind your words. You love Jesus and your ultimate purpose is to follow Him and honor His name.

It is a privilege to serve the Lord along side you. If you have written a post on these subjects, I plan to stop over next week to finish my reading. Can you leave me a link?

God is incredible. This journey culminated with a message this past Sunday from the pulpit. Pastor Greg, from Sunridge Community Church, delivered words written just for me. Or at least they seemed to be.

His message: Loving God is Not Enough…

Once again….Whoa!

“Teacher, which is the most important commandment in the law of Moses?”

Jesus replied, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.” --Matthew 22:36-40

Pastor Greg put forth an observation from all his years in ministry. “I have observed at every church I have pastored over many years a truth about those who have been believers for years. They travel down one of two paths. Some become very knowledgeable, maybe a tiny bit self-righteous. Of course, they don’t think they have everything figured out but compared to the guy sleeping in on Sunday morning they are doing pretty good. They may be a little less loving and a little more judgmental. They can be some of the most unkind people in the church.”

Pastor Greg went on to say, “Then there are others who move down the path of living and become more loving. They love people. No matter who they are. How stinky, disgusting, or uncomforting.”

The good, bad and ugly. As I sat listening to Pastor Greg’s experience, I squirmed. If I am honest with myself, I can be judgmental. Ouch!

God met me on Sunday morning, as I was squirming in my seat, my face turning pink under the scrutiny of self-examination. The Lord said to me, “Lynn, I KNOW you love me. But loving me is not enough. I want you to love people, practically, with an earnest heart.”

“Begin today to see all people as I see them. Your neighbors, the girl covered in tattoos working the coffee machine at Starbucks, the idiot driver who is oblivious to everyone else on the road, your husband who does not know me yet. Lynn, I love them. I love them as I love you. Now, you go and love them too.”

I will Lord, I will. Father, forgive me for being judgmental and a bit prideful. Help me to see unbelievers and all people through your eyes and Lord, teach me to love them. Lord, from this day forward help me to show kindness to people, all people. In Jesus name, Amen

To hear the entire message from Pastor Greg Sidders, click here.

Be Blessed, Lynn

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

MAJ Cover 100 size Thumb

Lynn has wonderfully mapped out the steps we all need to walk through to develop and grow this vital relationship with Him. This was the Lord’s intent for her transformation journey all along, and His intent for you too. Here she has spelled out the spiritual truths behind the principles and talked us through how she applied them. These truths are universally applicable to us all, though as the details of our lives, situations and hearts will be different, we will apply them differently. - Reader Review from Barnes & Noble.


On The Edge and Knee Deep in the Hoopla!

-Part Deux

Wow, I guess I am not the only one who is thinking about the implications of Edgy Christianity. Many of you have offered your thoughts. You have also shared you passion about this phenomenon currently swirling about in our faith media. To read the original post, click here.

This subject sure can rile up the Godly on the internet. In fact, I know a few of you have been motivated to research and write about this topic yourself. I can’t wait to read Iris’ post at Grace Alone tomorrow.

Can I first say that your words and your perspective have enthralled me.

Secondly, this subject has also stirred an interest in my husband. He read Monday’s post and all the comments. Interesting. I’m not sure what to think about that? I'm not sure he kows what to think about it.

I also talked with one the pastors from my church. Our leadership can sometimes be edgy. (Not always a bad thing… here I go again) His thoughts about this very subject were unexpected and also enlightening.

But today, as I sat in the church office working, a conversation developed regarding the Emergent Church. Okay, I must be living under a rock. What is the emergent church and what is it all about. Somehow does this all tie up together?

What is also fascinating is this: Why is God is bringing all this info to me in a crash course beginning last weekend at the writer’s conference and now…. well… everywhere and everyday from different people and sources.

Monday I went to Barns and Nobel and pickup two of the books listed on Monday’s post. I read them praying for discernement and with my Bible at my side.

I am overwhelmed with the countering strong passionate beliefs in our own Christian community over these books and the Emergent Church.

What I KNOW to be true is this: God is God. The Bible is His word and that is that. Period the end. But why all the controversy among His people?

So, write me. What is the emergent church? Are Christian Publishers putting forth these books into our Community because God wants to reach people the church has alienated?

More importantly how does this look or affect non-believers… my husband?

Can’t wait to hear from you…. Be Blessed, Lynn

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

MAJ Cover 100 size Thumb

Lynn has wonderfully mapped out the steps we all need to walk through to develop and grow this vital relationship with Him. This was the Lord’s intent for her transformation journey all along, and His intent for you too. Here she has spelled out the spiritual truths behind the principles and talked us through how she applied them. These truths are universally applicable to us all, though as the details of our lives, situations and hearts will be different, we will apply them differently. - Reader Review from Barnes & Noble.


What is in Your Camp?

It IS indecent.

I have been writing about marriage for over two years. I believe in marriage as God designed it. I believe with all of my heart. Because of my strong convictions about the sanctity of marriage I am compelled to share my thoughts about current events with regard to marriage. I know my words will draw a line in the sand. I can’t help it. I will not remain silent.

Article Headline June 5, 2008, The Californian, my local newspaper: Court removes last hurdle to gay marriage

As I scanned this article, my soul literally grieved. I felt pain. I am certain most of us don’t realize this change in our state will affect the world. I am convinced this single decision is a pivotal moment in our world and societal history. This one single change in our law will forever change marriage as we have known it.

On June 17th gay marriage will be legal in this state. Once we allow it there is no going back. Millions of gays will marry. Many will be residents of California, many will flock here from around the country and from around the world. Residency is not required in this state for a marriage license. Have you heard about this recent development? Have you ignored it? After all gay marriage is only allowed in crazy California. It couldn’t possibly happen where you live.

I am absolutely convinced gay marriage will be legal in all fifty states within a few short years.

I am absolutely convinced that within one generation, probably before I die, we will see headlines such as: Triple Wedding; Two men and one woman legally wed.

This is a certain reality. What's to stop our insane world from allowing two men and one woman to be wed? Why stop there, three men and two women. After all, they are consenting adults.

I want you to know that Believers did not stand by silent. We fought against gay marriage four years ago here in California and won in a popular vote election. Currently we have an initiative scheduled for the ballot this November. However, the court system took control and gay marriage will, in fact, be law in less than two weeks. The election in November will be too late to stop this runaway locomotive.

My spirit grieves over this development in light of Biblical teaching. What an arrogant slap in the face of God. He created marriage for His people. He ordained it.

I need to clarify something here. God hates sin regardless if it is homosexuality, an extra marital affair, lust, telling a lie. WE ARE ALL SINNERS. Love is what we need to share with sinners but there are consequences to sin. It is likely that ALL of us will share in the consequences of this new design in marriage.

I have thought about this landmark event for days now. I can tell you I believe marriage through the church is now more important than ever. Teaching our children what commitment to one person really means is paramount at this juncture. The only hope we have for our country today is to place more emphasis on why God created marriage, what His design is and how it is the best plan.

Does God see America – or should I say, California (for now) as a nation in need of a reprimand? Remember the decision to support gay marriage was over turned by a handful of judges – not the people.

And, my second question: As believers, where do we go from here?

I am anxious to hear your thoughts. For Dineen and me, we are living in this firestorm right now (California). This change will immediately impact our lives. Thank you for reading and I appreciate your boldness to reply. God bless, Lynn

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

MAJ Cover 100 size Thumb

Lynn has wonderfully mapped out the steps we all need to walk through to develop and grow this vital relationship with Him. This was the Lord’s intent for her transformation journey all along, and His intent for you too. Here she has spelled out the spiritual truths behind the principles and talked us through how she applied them. These truths are universally applicable to us all, though as the details of our lives, situations and hearts will be different, we will apply them differently. - Reader Review from Barnes & Noble.