Friday, May 25, 2012

The Glue To A Marriage

There are a number of things I try to do in this blog to assist people in gaining better insight in the Word of God. If nothing else, I hope people would try to pick up their bibles again and find the scripture to refute what I have been writing. Not for the purpose of arguing, rather to start enjoying the love God has set before you in those wonderful pages. There are also some entries in this blog written especially for the pastors, preachers, evangelists, prophets, and apostles where they received a Word from God to minister to His people but instead of the entire message, the congregation received a number of "rabbit trails" that misconstrued the true intent of the sermon and caused the members to be in error venturing off the given path (Psalm 119:105 AMP).

The error I recall here was while I was dating for the purposes of marriage and after we failed in the marriage. While dating, there was a pastor that preached over and over again that the glue to a marriage is sex. The men in the church would stir a little agreeing with the pastor but could be having a little issue with their perspective wives on the matter. Knowing where the pastor was coming from because of his past, I couldn't fault him for having this understanding. But that understanding was for him and not for the rest of the people having a completely different personality and the way others cope with their own issues (Romans 12:4 AMP). Nevertheless, being young, naive and relying on "the man of God" knowing more about the matter then myself, I trusted what he said and continued by which I was instructed. Never mind the sheer exhaustion of caring for a young family from 6:00 a.m until 1:00 the next morning (depending on how new the infant - sometimes longer), still having to do household duties, with the checking of homework, going to school functions for the older children, and having to type papers for the spouse that is allowed to finish school, and then mustering up enough energy to do your marital duties only to pass out and do it all over again the next weekday.  And there you have it...the marriage is together like a gnat stuck on fly paper.

The other bit of error I recall after the marriage were the differences between men and women. One being, in the message, was that women equate love with emotion while men see love as having to do with sex. This message was in a completely different ministry and yet the stir was about the same. Only I perceived the stir independently because the congregation was more mature then the one in the last ministry and I believe they knew better. The pastor had to urge the men to agree with him. They reluctantly grunted. I was fascinated trying to put the message within the context of all of the other sermons I received as well as where in the scriptures was he going to get this instruction from. He went on describing personal experiences, testimonials, and what he had observed. Know that when there is a message of this sort, you must also use a filter. It is with the Word that you gain truth not by someone else's personal experiences. If you don't believe me, try to do what someone else did in order to get the same blessing. It doesn't work. It will never work. You aren't that person and as God used him/her in that very instance, you would not handle the matter in the same way because you do not think the same, you weren't raised the same, you don't have the same education, nor the same ideals. The Word is the only truth you can use without stumbling (John 14:17 AMP).

It isn't really difficult to figure out once you start studying the Word of God for yourself (Joshua 1:8 AMP). In fact, it is so simple, I am apprehensive in writing it because of the many failed marriages over the years when all that was needed was the common factor we were raised with since Sunday School. Without this common factor, we could not be Christian. Without this common factor, we would do what the world does in such matters. We would have the same thoughts as the world. If a marriage has too many difficulties to deal with, the answer the world has is to get a divorce and divide all of the assets right down the middle. How did that idea get in the church (James 4:4 AMP)? Could it be that common factor missing in the union of those two people? How could they have it before marriage and then lose it while in the marriage?

The world teaches that without trust, their is no relationship. It then teaches that one doesn't know a person without living with that person first. The reason for these lessons is because of the two different personalities coming together. They have to see if there is a good fit. It is his ying meshing with her yang, as it were. As long as it is a good idea for them, they can work it out. That doesn't work for those professing to be more and more like Christ (the definition of a Christian). The trust is put in God (Psalm 146:3 AMP). Once that complete trust is in Him, then the work begins with the heart of the individual (Isaiah 26:3 KJV)). All of those cob webs and mess that no one else knows about is dealt with so he/she can grow in the Spirit so not to fulfill the lust of the flesh (Galatians 5:16 KJV). God is magnified and therefore all of those other pesky issues are resolved. The practice of love is paramount for it is written that we can hang all of the law and prophets on those two commandments; to love God with all of your heart, mind, and strength and to love your neighbor as your self (Matthew 22:36-40 KJV). This practice becomes a habit until he hears God tell him that it is not good for him to be alone. Then and only then will God present him with a woman that is fitting to the practices that he has been doing. Why? Because God is good. He sees the hearts of men. He knows these two people even before they were formed in the womb (Jeremiah 1:5 AMP). These two people can come together and be as one because they both think alike. There is no arguing when the thoughts are the same. There is no discord when there is agreement (Amos 3:3 KJV). These two people can walk together along the same path that has been chosen for them...because it is the same path. She doesn't have to trust him because her trust is in God. She has developed a relationship with Him. He will tell her what she needs to do in order for her to be his help and it is understood by both because they are .... one (Genesis 2:24 KJV)!

Now that the common factor is understood, lets deal with the differences about men and women. I had an issue with the idea that women are emotional and men are rational. I have heard this description of women over and over again. Why would men believe this about women? Is it because of the frustration women have about their husbands deciding not to do what was promised in the wedding vows? Is it because of the duties that are expected of the wives while in the minds of men, boys will be boys? Is it the exhaustion of the women not knowing what they signed up for thinking they were the help of these men and not their personal maids? There is a reason as to why women have been emotional over the years. If these matters were resolved and the men did what they were raised to do, would women be as emotional with issues about relationships, finances, their future goals, or sex? Who knows? Has it happened? Where are those lessons taught? Who has preached those messages (2 Timothy 4:2 AMP)?

Women are logical and rational beings as well. If we weren't, how could we be the help that clearly men need? How could we have dealt with the foolishness of men over all of these centuries? How could women be able to have a child, manage a household, raise that child, go to school, have a career, and still have enough energy to make her husband smile (Proverbs 31 AMP)? Its doesn't happen because of emotion. Give honor where honor is due.

Equating love and sex is the foolishness I was referring to previously. We have learned that God is love. Where is it written that God and sex are one in the same? Who would misconstrue such a verse? We love our parents, our children, our friends but we don't have sex with them. Am I being too literal? Well, its being as plain as possible and is what I wish would happen when those who have been anointed to teach would be as well. The other way allows people to think whatever and tell others the same mess. This goes on for years believing it to be the truth. It can't be. It is error. Error can take over and cause people to be ill. It has its own root system. You do understand the parable of the sower and seed sown - don't you? Error is seed too. It is why I listen with a filter (Mark 4:24 AMP). The filter is Wisdom gained for the asking (James 1:5 AMP). When using this filter, it saves you from going down the wrong path. Wisdom tells you this. It isn't man that you trust but God. He would never give you such instruction as the aforementioned equaling Him to sex. If man believes that sex and love are the same, this man is carnally minded and needs to grow up. He still has a lustful nature and could not love his wife as Christ loves the church. That man would not understand the practice of love as it is written. He has practiced sex and believes he could make his wife happy because he has practiced his carnal nature. The world does this too. They are called sinners. What would you call such a man who says he is Christian and has practiced what he has learned in church services? I call it a spot or a wrinkle (Ephesians 5:25-29 KJV). Pastors need to wise up with what comes from that pulpit.

The Beatles had a hit song way back when entitled, All You Need Is Love. One of the verses of that song seems quite fitting here: its easy. Sex isn't easier. In fact, if love were practiced as it is written, sex would be easier and more fulfilling. If you actually love your spouse or intended as you claim to, do what is expected of you through Christ Jesus and then try to tell someone that marriage is hard work (Matthew 11:29-30 KJV). I would have to call you a liar.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

You Have To Know Good To Find Good

It is astounding when hearing people say why they would like to be married. There is a myriad of reasons that sound good but upon interrogation, one will see the real root and the true intent. It is rare that I hear a man say that he needs help and just as rare to hear a woman say that she is willing to sacrifice whatever she has to in order to be pleasing to God (Romans 14;17-19 AMP). Just do a selah right there for a moment.

There was this man, years ago, that I thought God used me for presentation to him as his good thing. I had already been through a marriage and promised to God that I would never put myself through anything like that again. I assented that I would be content in whatever state that I am in thereafter. Then there was this man and I said to myself, "I wasn't looking to get married - but let God's will be done." The fact that he was easy on the eyes also helped - heaps! So I got busy and started praying using Stormie O'Martin's book, The Power of a Praying Wife. Diligent in those prayers is an under statement (1 Timothy 2:2-4 AMP). I was adamant about never getting into the situation I was in before. I knew that the prayers of the righteous avails much and my faith was at work doing what the Word says it will do. I waited for him to approach and then I had this thought that I believed came from the Lord: Would you have prayed as fervently, if he were for someone else? First, I should have tested the thought before I answered it but I didn't know any better back then (1 John 4:1-3 AMP). What I began to do was reflect on my intentions and see my heart (Proverbs 4:25-27 AMP). I allowed myself to see if this man could be for anyone else and if my prayers would have been as ardent. In being honest, I knew they wouldn't have been. I also started to get perturbed with how long I had been praying for this man....and he was for someone else? Seriously, are you kidding me? Over a certain period of time, him approaching me was extremely vague as I was to him. But alone or passing each other in the halls, him flirting with me was blatant. From winking at me to being fidgety around me - he even skipped when he was around the corner and didn't think I saw him. He opened the door for me and as I went through I heard him make that sound that men do - you know what I mean. Because of these flirtatious acts, I remained patient for him to speak to me properly. I waited and waited...and then, without warning, he was gone. No one knew what happened but there were plenty of rumors. After sometime, I had to ask God forgiveness and repent. He saw what was in this man's heart (1 Samuel 16:7 AMP) - I didn't.

There was this other man that sat behind me in church services and was my supervisor in volunteering for a specific auxiliary in the church. He would encourage the other volunteers with a word from the Lord and other testimonials. There was this one testimony in particular that he blessed me with when he was presented a wife. God had made the presentation to him and before they started dating he found that she was having a difficult time with her finances. She was so deep in debt that it was stressing her out with her daily tasks. He sat with her and started to work a financial plan with her. He then would check back to see if she was following the plan. It was a short time later that she was completely out of debt. This blessed me to hear especially when what was being taught was for the man to do and investigation on her before putting on the ring. Not to see if she had been with other men or that her health could be of a detriment to him, but for him to see if her credit would ruin his. I needed to hear this man's testimony. It was like seeing God sitting there with Adam and his wife stitching clothes together to cover the nakedness that Adam said he had (Genesis 3:21 AMP). This man provided covering for this woman and when she adhered to instruction, they were both blessed. They have been married for a number of years now and have a ministry of their own.

The thing is about both testimonials, I didn't know anything about this man and my former supervisor didn't know anything about that woman other then this is what thus says the Lord. The Word does tell us to guard our hearts for out of it comes the issues of life (Proverbs 4:23 AMP). I always regarded that verse as a warning because we come to learn the compassion of Christ and envelope it. We then get a passion for the things that He is passionate about - people. When we do, we have to learn not to become so emotionally involved. This takes instruction and Wisdom to keep it. In dating, if we don't recognize the difference from the flesh, lust, and the voice of God we might as well get ready for a lot of heart ache and pain. It is inevitable without Him. It is called lack. It is the a form of death that we were warned about in Deuteronomy (30:19 AMP).

It is written, for the love of money is the root of all evil (1 Timothy 6:10 AMP). With that scripture in mind, can you see my former supervisor, that was previously mentioned, re-route his own path if he concerned himself of how her credit would affect his? If he loved his money so much and how her debt would mess up all of his hard work, he could have lost out on the blessing that has him with more wealth then the numbers listed in his bank account.

If I made the aggressive move towards that man knowing that I had been presented to him and he was taking his time about it, can you see how what I wanted rather then patience having her perfect work could have been to my detriment? Whatever he did in his life from the time God made the presentation to the time he no longer attended church services in that ministry was something I was glad not to be a part of. My peace did not have to be troubled with whatever he decided to go through (Isaiah 26:3 KJV).

When we acknowledge Him in all of our ways, He will direct our path (Proverbs 3:6 KJV). Women have more of a task to be vigilant in her prayers because in accepting an invitation to date for the purposes of marriage is actually making that man the head of her. Is she willing for him to be making the major decisions in the household? Is he equip to have that responsibility? Does he desire to have that responsibility or is he finding a way not to burn (1 Corinthians 7:9 KJV)? Is she willing to sacrifice her Kingdom in order to extinguish that burn (Matthew 6:33 KJV)?

Men should be raised to be heads of state. Whether it was in the home or not, if they are going to church regularly, God is a Father to the fatherless (Psalm 68:5 KJV). He will be there to meet that need. If men adhere to instruction and be diligent with what has been given him to do, the need will be met along with the blessing to follow (Proverbs 10:17 AMP). Wouldn't a disciplined man receive a reward (Hebrews 10:35 KJV)? So when asking a woman for a date, what are you bringing to be the head of her? You can see what she is bringing - her body for you to be the head of. Can you see why she has to use more scrutiny then you? If you can, then you can also stop thinking that the more mature a woman is, the more attitude she has. Its not attitude, its memories from the past who claimed they had a good head on their shoulders too. What say you?

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Slim Pick'ns?

Way back when I was a teenager, I would listen to the older women talk about how minimal the choices were when they were in their twenties. They would say, "if the men aren't already married or gay, they're in prison." Then they would look at me and continue, "What are the men going to be like when you get ready to marry?" I wasn't really interested in marrying at the time, but what they were saying stuck, especially when I would hear World News Statistics about the ratio of men to women. Slim pick'ns indeed!

What was he thinking when he proposed?
What was the last generation of women thinking about when they decided to accept the proposals of marriage? If they thought there wasn't much to choose from then, they had to compromise what their perfect man was (Philippians 4:6 AMP). If they compromised then how great was marital life to them and how wonderful were the lives of the children with two people who had to be miserable?

In my current place of employment, I work with the geriatric community. I have never seen so many couples who have been married for 50 years and more. Some are still so much in love with the other person and others have learned to contend with their situation  - what else are they going to do at that age? In watching these couples, there is one man in particular that stood out to me. He had been married to his wife for over 35 years. One day he decides to have a discussion with administration. He was in tears. He explained that living with his wife is unbearable and he needs to get an apartment of his own. They continued to listen to his story and finally concedes to his request, unusual as it was. Can you imagine the surprise on his wife's face when he packed his things and moved to an apartment beneath her's? How much more shocked could she have been when he decided to woo a female resident a few years later? There his wife was trying to cope with the huge adjustment of her husband leaving her and as she goes through the lobby of the complex, she sees her husband serenading a resident of his new found interest. I was temporarily at a loss for words and kept the information on file in my mind thinking of a specific scripture - a few of them, actually.

Granted, his wife wasn't one of the most pleasant women I have ever met, but that was his choice (Deuteronomy 30:19 AMP). It wasn't like he was blind sighted for over 35 years! So when does a man compromise from his desires? When, with the ratio being what it is, does he just settle for the woman he is with rather then looking for - or better yet, waiting on God to present him with the ideal mate especially created for him (Genesis 2:20-22)?

Have you ever seen the show Bridezillas? I just couldn't believe the program was real and found it still entertaining as to why these women have friends at all. I watch these potential brides wreak havoc on the lives of the very people that she asked for them to be in her wedding. I watch these so called brides be the epitome of ugly to their potential grooms. And just when you think he is going to call the whole thing off, after the commercial, there they are exchanging vows. What makes any of them think that they are going to last until death or for that matter, the next 20 days? I ask the question because throughout the wedding process, there is nothing but arguing and he isn't surprised about it. This tells me that they have argued before during the dating process - and more then once. What also makes me think that the program isn't scripted is because a man cried. He cried! The bride badgered him until he broke down ... and cried. Why would he marry her after that? Why would she still marry him? Could she reverence him knowing that she could make him cry at the drop of a hat? Seriously, do you get this? HE CRIED!!!

Alright, lets get back in the gate and put some things into perspective as a true believer, dating for the purposes of marriage. First, praise God that the pickings are slim (1 Thessalonians 5:18 AMP)! This makes it easier to see what God is doing for you and the wolves can be seen so much more clearer. Wolves come in packs and are calculating when ready to pounce on their prey of choice. They usually target the weak. Though I have seen on Nature programs where the wolf pack will out run their prey for miles to exhaustion and then come in for the attack. It is absolutely fascinating especially if you look at it from a scriptural point of view (John 10:10-14 AMP). The predator likes to catch the victim off guard. He/she will make a statement or ask a question that will have you wondering where did that subject come from or why does he/she think like that. If you ever have to contort your expression trying to understand some craziness of the person you are dating, ask yourself if you compromised your ideals in a mate.

This is one of the reasons why I believe opposites don't attract. There are so many things waiting in the balance to argue about when you believe that it makes life more interesting to have absolutely nothing in common. If you solely base your relationship on sexual attraction, you have no one to blame but yourself when your Kingdom starts crashing around you. The opposite of you, being the righteousness of God through Christ Jesus, is someone who is unrighteous (or a sinner), someone who likes drama (lack of peace), someone who finds a disliking to all of the things you like (lack of joy) (Colossians 2:13-23 AMP). Really? Are you truly attracted to this type of person? Ask yourself this, are you willing to compromise any of the ingredients that make up your Kingdom (Romans 14:17 KJV)?

You do realize that people will change. Some mature faster then others and I do believe people can as easily fall into love as they can fall out it. If there is no practice to walk in it, then lust is misconstrued to mean chemistry, which is also interpreted as love at first sight. With that in mind, why would anyone rush into a life time contract, in the sight of God, without coming to terms with the One that created the individual? Do you think I am referring to the parent? While that is very respectable to get to know your perspective in laws, you don't know what those parents are thinking either. They could be thrilled that you finally took their lazy, mooch of a child off of their hands. Whether that child is their son or daughter, the parents know that they messed up in raising this child and happy that there is an unsuspecting person (you) that will pick up their mess having your entire life to assist in straightening him/her out. I wouldn't blame them for being so pleased; I would be too if I were that sort of parent.

You can't be surprised. God told us all that in the last evil days men would be lovers of themselves (2 Timothy 3:1-7 KJV). What do you think that means? Will he love his wife as Christ loves the church? No. Will she love her own husband and reverence him? No. Can't you see this is a place where the church needs to have a complete concentration and ministry on? No one needs to sow seed and bring a harvest from the product of that scriptural reference.

So you see, when time seems to be taking its everlastingly long for you to get that special person that would be a blessing to you and your home, it is best to deal with that frustration and evict him from your mind. God is working on some things. Let Him be the Almighty that He is. He has been there where you would be if He gave this person to you too soon. It wasn't peaceful, joyful, and righteousness was teetering. We went through so much to establish our Kingdom (Matthew 6:33 KJV). Don't compromise it for nothing. If the pickings are looking even more slim as the years pass - thank God (Matthew 7:13-20 KJV). Your time is soon approaching. Amen?