August 22, 2009
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March 31, 2009
Maintaining Trust in Your Marriage: A Devotional
11 Her husband has full confidence in her
and lacks nothing of value.
12 She brings him good, not harm,
all the days of her life.
We often hear the theory that trust is an essential in marriage. Without trust, some believe it is near impossible to have a healthy relationship. Trust has clearly been abused all across the media because all you hear about is divorce and infidelity. Those two seem to be popular and does nothing but create a nervous spark in the marriage community- making couples want to randomly do things like check text messages, phone calls, clothes pockets and car glove compartments. Though the mentioned theory is popular, it is also absolutely true. Trust is clearly an essential in marriage.
I recently had to learn how to trust my husband on a different level than ever before in our marriage. He just started traveling with his job. He is a mortgage counselor and one of his job requirements is to travel a few times a month with his team for company events. At such events, his job is to potentially help prevent foreclosure for clients. Now, my husband is a very friendly and well-spoken man. So, I’m sure he is doing an excellent job when he travels. However, when he’s away, I’m home with our son. Typically at night, thoughts try to run across my mind questioning what he’s up to. This is where I begin to pray that God would give me a peace about my husband and not worry about what he’s doing.
My husband and I had to discuss just how much we trust one another. On one hand, he’s away working a few weekends of the month. On another hand, I’m here with our son and just as much as I could be worrying about what he’s doing- he could be worrying the same way about me. But, we’re not worried. Here’s why:
As I mentioned, trust is an essential to a healthy marriage. In a Christian marriage, we should have more peace about certain circumstances. If you and your husband are filled with the Holy Spirit, then God’s conviction should certainly help prevent you both from making terrible mistakes. That’s why when we pray we should ask God to lead us not into temptation (Matthew 6:13).
I just want to leave you with a note of encouragement today. Learn how to trust your husband or your wife. If we trust the Lord and have Him as the head of our marriage, then we do not have anything to worry about. God will certainly let you know if there is something you should be praying about in your marriage. I promise He will. So, relax a little and enjoy your marriage!
© 2009 Kennisha Hill
Pastor John Piper’s Blog, “Does God “Lead us In to Temptation?”
Go read this article HERE.
March 15, 2009
Marital Bliss Newsletter proudly presents a new column, “Building Her House- Women’s Corner”. This is a section made specifically for women. While we do promote Godly marriage and write articles that encourage men and woman, we wanted to create a column especially for women.
This section will include articles about how to handle certain forms of opposition in marriage, as well as great fashion, design and parenting advice. We want to show you exactly how the Proverbs woman does it!
Proverbs 14:1 says, “A Wise Woman Builds Her House…”
This section is for married women only. Pass the word to your friends!
New articles to follow soon. Stay Tuned!
Thank you for your Support!
March 6, 2009
(Genesis 2:21-24) “21 So the LORD God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man’s ribs [a] and closed up the place with flesh. 22 Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib [b] he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.23 The man said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman, [c] ‘ for she was taken out of man.”24 For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.”
I’m sure we can all say, “We love the kids!” How cute and cuddly they are. As a mommy to a one year old and being three months shy of delivering my 2nd baby, I can honestly say that my love for my children is unexplainable. Sometimes I find myself just standing right beside his crib and watching him sleep. I’m so thankful for the blessings the Lord has trusted my husband and I with.
I was watching a television show the other day. There, a woman openly admited putting her children before her husband. My heart began to sympathize with her. I notice that the very thing she spoke of is a very easy thing to do. Can anyone agree? Though it is a very easy thing to do, that doesn’t make it right nor does it mean we are operating in the proper order according to scripture.
The bible says that children are a blessing; a heritage,
Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward
This means that we are supposed to take care of them. Afterall, God did entrust them in our care. That’s the reason he gave us the ability to have children. However, we are to take care of them and then….let them go!
This is where it becomes a hard pill to swallow.
Do you ever hear your parents say, “You’ll always be my baby”? Though that’s like sweet melodies to your ear and heart, the truth of the matter is… you have grown and now have moved on to have your own life. You now have your own family. You are married and according to scripture, your spouse is who you will have next to you until death do you part. The bible doesn’t say that about our children! Why? Because, we are only borrowing them!
Take care of your spouse! Clearly, I’m not encouraging you to neglect your children! No way! God needs us to raise our children up by the word. Love them. Hug them. Nurture them. Come on, you know what to do. However, don’t find yourself giving more time to your children than to your spouse. There’s one very vital key word to all of this: Balance!
Learning how to balance a life being married with children can be a very tricky thing- especially if you have multiple children. I know some women who I gladly give the title “Super Women”. They seem to have balance down to the wire. My prayer as a new mom is to be the wife and mother God needs me to be for my husband and my children. We should pray that prayer daily!
“24 For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.”
Whether we like it or not, we will leave the home and start our own lives. In fact, more than likely that’s something you did! I greatly applaud you for that. Now, if you have children, we must come to realize that there will come a day when our children will say their byes as well. Family is precious, but it will become a time for them to start a life of their own. Hanging on to them will only create an attachment that would need to be broken. Yep, I believe that to be true.
So, I just want to encourage you with this today. Love your children, hold them and enjoy the time the Lord has allowed you to have them. But, don’t put them before your spouse. Let’s operate in the order God ordained! We will only live a much happier and healthier life!
I pray this entry has encouraged you today!
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February 28, 2009
Do you remember your first telephone conversation with your spouse? If your conversation was anything like mine, I bet your laughing right about now. I remember it like it was yesterday.
” Hello, may I speak to Kee-lieus” I asked, unsure if I pronounced his name correctly.
” This is Kellus!” he said- his strong baritone voice boldly correcting my mistake.
I felt awful. In fact, the first 30 minutes of our conversation, I felt the urge to apologize. A little later, I became more and more comfortable wtih the voice on the other end of the line. And, from that day forward, we would chat on the phone for hours at a time on each call. The mystery of “who is this person” was revealing itself to me little by little-after each conversation. I wanted to know it all and didn’t want to give a second of our talk-time to silence. I yearned for him.
Now that we are married, with a toddler and a little girl on the way, it seems hard to find the time for those “unimportant” conversations; for those sweet small talks. I am a stay at home mom, so I am very busy with our son during the day. When my husband arrives home, these days I find myself itching for a break so I can lay down and relax. Life suddenly appears a routine.
The Lord had to show me that we need to sacrifice to get to know each other more. In marriage, growth is crucial. In fact, in life you will either move one or two ways: closer or apart.
When I say sacrifice, I mean, drop the kids off at a sitter. Put the kids to bed early. Pick a day of the week or two nights a month and designate them as “Date Night”.
Wouldn’t you like to get the same butterflies in your stomach- you know, like the ones you once had during those first phone conversations and dates? If so, make time for them. Trust me, it will only benefit your marriage.
Let’s yearn for time with our spouses- as much as Solomon yearned for his wife; his Beloved.
“My dove in the clefts of the rock, in the hiding places on the mountainside, show me your face, let me hear your voice; for your voice is sweet, and your face is lovely.”
-Song of Solomon 2:14
I pray this article has encouraged you today.
Kennisha Hill, Marital Bliss Editor-in-Chief
Subscribe Today! http://www.maritalblissonline.com
February 24, 2009
Prayer is an essential for our faith. We pray to build a strong relationship with God. We pray to communicate our needs to him. We pray for each other. We pray for ourselves. Without prayer, I believe it’s impossible to please God. Scripture tells us that without faith it is impossible to please God (Hebrews 11:6). Well, how can you pray if you don’t have faith? Essentially what I’m saying is, prayer is that link to God that you must have, if you have faith and believe He’s there. So, today it was on my heart to talk about how effective prayer is in your marriage. Follow with me.
What a crummy day I was having today! Most people would blame it on pregnancy hormones. I beg to differ. With so many deadlines I was trying to meet, while chasing my one year old son, life for a brief moment seemed hectic. I tried to reach my husband several times at work and couldn’t reach him. I tried to sit still for a few seconds, but my toddler refused to let that happen. Frustration started building and building. So, to ease my spirit, I decided to play gospel music. But, it seemed like I could not hear it because every few seconds I was running around to see what my little man was up to. No break. No second. “Lord, please give me strength”, is all I could look up and ask for.
Soon after, my husband came home on his lunch break. “Finally!” I said to myself, in a voice of relief. Seriously, I needed him to come home so I can have an ounce of peace in my bedroom. He walked in, picked up our son and came in the bedroom to see how I was. I could not part my eyes to look at him. I was glued to my computer with hopes that what I was writing would ease some tension. All the while, frustration continued to build at my husband arrive home later than his usual lunch time.
He walked out of the room, walked back in with Kellus and said, “Come on, let’s pray for mommy.”
Immediately, my heart sank. Instead of allowing the frustrating spirit that was trying to consume me enter him, he decided to attack the issue head first with prayer!
Instantly, the frustration disappeared and all I could do was cry. My tears began to flow because I am so blessed to have a husband who did not complain because of my raging hormonal moment- but I have a husband who is so spiritually connected with God that he knew exactly how to fight this battle. Pray was the only way.
Let me encourage you with this today.
Pray. If you see your wife or your husband having a bad day, don’t assume anything. Don’t think of anything else to do but to pray for peace and joy. It is our responsibility to lift each other up when we are struggling with all circumstances- no matter how big or small you think it is. Let your fleshly feelings go and put your spiritual hat on. Be sensitive to the Holy Spirit and allow the Lord to use you to be the prayer warrior for your spouse. I promise, if we can learn this concept and apply it to our daily lives- we’d have fewer arguments. Amen?
I pray this entry has encouraged you today! Thanks for your Support of Marital Bliss Newsletter!
Marital Bliss Founder/ Editor-in-Chief
February 17, 2009
|With a growing subscriber list, Marital Bliss Newsletter continues to send gallons of encouragement to thirsty marriages.|
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
So far, topics covered in this newsletter range from “Making a Change in this New Year” to “Keeping Intimacy Strong”.
“At Marital Bliss, we want to talk about real topics that real married couples go through”, says Kennisha Hill, Marital Bliss Editor-In-Chief. “We want our subscribers to think, ‘Wow, I really needed to hear that’. And we hope it encourages them through the good and the bad.”
Marital Bliss is more than a newsletter that offers great marital advice. This newsletter is also provides resources for their subscribers. On the recent Valentine’s Day issue, Marital Bliss announced the winners of their “Share Your Story” contest- a contest that asked subscribers to write and submit their love story.
On the Marital Bliss website (www.maritalblissonline.com) the team explains, “At Marital Bliss, we are excited to be a blessing to you! This may be our first contest, but it certainly won’t be our last. Stay tuned for upcoming contest to learn how you can win gift cards, CD’s and books!”
If you are a married couple in search for some encouragement and inspiration, then Marital Bliss Newsletter is for you!
Subscribe today at www.maritalblissonline.com .
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February 4, 2009
Written By: Guest Contributor, Author, Linda Dominique Grosvenor
For years as single people we have been urged to foster lasting relationships, be open, honest and learn to communicate our needs clearly and effectively in preparation for our spouse. However, once we’ve received that special person into our lives that we wish to cherish, share our hopes and dreams with and connect with on the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual level, most of us haven’t been taught beyond that. We haven’t been taught how or when to break ties with or “cool down” some former relationships that may be detrimental to the budding marriage covenant itself. Of course, we’re talking about being friends with those of the opposite sex.
In this day and age you may not think that men and women being friends is an issue because society is so free about what it readily accepts and people think nothing of seeing a married woman sitting in a quaint cafe, joking and playfully touching a male that isn’t her spouse. But as those of the faith we have to learn to nurture that which we so prayerfully desire. We want to believe that men and women can be just friends…and they can. We’d like to think that once married, neither spouse should have to give up their carefully cultivated friendships with those of the opposite sex in lieu of the marriage itself…and they don’t. There are just serious boundaries that need to be erected to make sure that the emotional needs of the two in the covenant are being fed by each other and not by an outside party.
Bruce Wilkinson, the author of Prayer The of Jabez teaches a marriage seminar on “Leaving and Cleaving” according to Genesis 2:24 that instructs married people on proper behavior for couples. The Word says, “For this cause a man shall leave his father and mother and shall cleave to his wife and they shall become one flesh.” The definition of cleaving is: to adhere closely, stick, to cling and to remain faithful. Respectfully a couple is not fully “cleaving” if their physical assistance, mental fortitude or emotions are often found outside of the home remedying someone else’s problems and creates issues within their own relationship.
While we may believe that God implores us to be givers and to do good to our neighbors and enemies, none of that supercedes Genesis 2:24 in which we are instructed to “cling” to our mate. Furthermore the Word implores us, “Do not allow what you consider good to be spoken of as evil,” (Romans 14:16 KJV). Your midnight assistance at a friend’s house may be good-natured, but a better option might be to have them call the proper authorities if they have a safety or health issue and check in with them by phone. Sure, it may seem a little secluded to function this way, but God’s Biblical laws and statutes were designed to keep the marriage solid and intact and the enemy completely out.
M. Gary Neuman a noted marriage counselor and the author of Emotional Infidelity: How to Avoid It and 10 Other Secrets to a Great Marriage says, “You don’t have to have sex with anyone else to be unfaithful. Emotional infidelity is just as…and at times even more…destructive to your marriage.” He goes on to share, “We forget the emotional harm of relating to someone outside the marriage [especially] when that same energy can be used to relate to our own spouse”. Meaning, lunch at that new Thai restaurant or Steakhouse that you’ve been eager to try shouldn’t be something you experience for the first time with a co-worker or a friend of the opposite sex. Your marriage and the covenant promise are rooted in discovering new things together and growing as a spiritual unit. No matter how tempted, when it comes to offers presented to you by other people, a new restaurant or grand opening of a gourmet food store is a chance to grow and build memories between you and your spouse…otherwise as a runner up or second thought, it diminishes the excitement of the experience for them.
In my non-fiction book The Plural Thing: Spiritually Preparing for Your Soul Mate I urge readers to do what they know is Biblically right. How we are to govern ourselves in a marriage is in the scriptures. Keeping your marriage thriving takes constant effort and the Word is our guide. Christian couples should never allow friends carte blanche when it comes to their time or resources and you should never become so exhausted helping others that you have little or no time left over for your spouse. Marriage requires DAILY nurturing. God didn’t designate your husband or wife to be a spare wheel or to glean what you have leftover to give after you’ve been a “giver” to everybody else all day long. Remember, cleave to your spouse…that means that nobody comes before them, not parents, career, friends or extracurricular activities.
Just as sure as God desires for you to feel safe with the person He has entrusted you to, it is His desire for them to feel safe with you. It’s hard to feel that safety when you’re wondering what a friend of the opposite sex [whether they’re married or not] calling late at night for consolation from your spouse truly means. Friends should never come to depend on you or your spouse exclusively either. If you have friends of the opposite sex that you converse with regularly that have never engaged your spouse in conversation, let alone met them face to face…you are in error! We should never find ourselves at any level having an isolated relationship with someone that doesn’t include our spouse. Anything that excludes one spouse is a potential set up. Once you are married all of your friendships become a “package deal”. They don’t get just you or your spouse, they accept both of you, greet both of you, extend “hellos” on the telephone to both of you and include you both in any invites or activities.
So, how do we get past the awkwardness and uncomfortable feeling that our spouse can get about the camaraderie with our friends of the opposite sex and realign the boundaries and secure our personal commitment to our mate? Lunch, dinner, church socials, trips to the mall, office parties, company picnics and other functions should always include our significant other. With the aggressive society we live in, no matter how long you’ve been friends with someone it is impossible to know every notion that may have crossed their minds. Often too late, many discover that a friend of the opposite sex was simply maintaining a friendship until a more appealing option presented itself. That’s why your spouse’s presence is so very important. It reinforces to any “mustard seed hopefuls” that they don’t have a chance because your loyalty lies elsewhere.
Those like me that advocate feeding the marriage and starving any opposition to the marriage warn against, “disclosing marital strife and unresolved issues to a coworker or friend” as well as “Traveling together alone with a coworker or friend of the opposite sex,” or “Social kisses” (the mouth is an intimate organ). Researchers have also noted that many affairs begin between men and women with safe marriages at home and close friendships at work. As they regularly meet for coffee breaks and lunch, these relationships develop into deep friendships. Coworkers come to depend on these coffee rendezvous, and soon they have emotional work friendships and crumbling marriages. Dr. Shirley Glass author of Not Just Friends shares, “Today’s workplace has become the new danger zone of romantic attraction and opportunity,” and that “Eighty-two percent of the 210 unfaithful partners I’ve treated have had an affair with someone who was, at first, “just a friend.’” From 1991 to 2000, Glass discovered in her practice that 50 percent of the unfaithful women and about 62 percent of unfaithful men she treated were involved with someone from work.
You can eliminate the problems before they arise by demoting the friendships a notch and promoting your spouse. If you let friends believe that things are going to be the same way with you now that you’re married as it was when you were single, it will be tougher for them to respect any boundaries that you try to erect later on. Prevent yourself from becoming a crutch to your friends. If they always want you to lend them your ear, learn to draw the line at some point and leave the counseling to the professionals. An occasional word of encouragement to a friend is all right as we are called to uplift each other, but it should not become a weekly pep rally or gab session where you are guiding your friend’s life and they can’t make a decision without checking in with you first.
What we all need to grasp here is that when you as a friend provide a sympathetic ear to friends of the opposite sex they can slowly begin to fashion you as the perfect mate in their mind without you even knowing it (especially if their own relationship is crumbling). The thoughts start with, “He/She is so attentive, sweet, helpful and they’re always available when I need them.” They can come to rely on your daily phone calls; it nurtures them, brightens their day and then in a weird twist they can begin to believe that they have claims on your time. Thus, we need to err on the side of caution and keep any possible intrusions at arms length while we nurture the true love that we were given.
It’s truly not about being under the watchful eye of an insecure spouse, because the majority of the time the issue isn’t insecurity or jealousy at all, but rather feelings that stem from what your spouse may feel is your friend’s inappropriateness and disrespect for the marriage covenant. Imagine that its like having the seed of a beautiful flower you hope will one day bloom that you just planted in fertile soil, you’ve barely covered it over and watered it before its dug up by someone else seeking “attention” before it (the seed) has had a chance to form roots, push itself up from the earth and grow towards the sun. Understand that your friends of the opposite sex won’t approach you with a fork tongue, horns and a pointy tail, but we need to realize that sometimes the friends that you’ve had prior to marriage can on some level feel territorial. It’s not always in the speech, sometimes it’s in the way they “need” you in the middle of the night and expect you to drop everything like you did when you were single.
In all fairness, I’m not for a second saying that all male-female relationship are premeditated, but when we enter into a marriage we still need to put personal feelings aside and heed 1 Thessalonians that says, “Abstain from all appearance of evil,” apply it to our everyday lives and make sure that if there are any improper actions that we are quick to hold our friends accountable. We can defend our friends (because we’ve known them for so long) and leave our spouse feeling “uncovered” and “exposed” by saying, “he/she didn’t mean anything by that,” instead of making it clear to your friend(s) in an appropriate manner what kind of kidding and joking will and won’t be tolerated. It is all right to say to a friend, “Listen, my husband/wife is uncomfortable with it when you”, ” A true friend who is happy for you and has no selfish motives, will respect that and govern themselves accordingly.
A healthy marriage is a beautiful thing and the institution should never be entered into lightly. You should go into it fully understanding that and requiring that everyone in your circle understands how much you value it. The Word says, “What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder,” (Mark 10:9). Like the vinedresser in the vineyard we have to be prepared to realize that with our friends if need be we may have to cut ties a few wayward branches that have the potential to ruin a very fruitful harvest.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Linda Dominique Grosvenor has made her foray into non-fiction with the inspirational non-fiction hit The Plural Thing: Spiritually Preparing for Your Soul Mate. Her expertise on dating and relationship issues has been used in articles for a variety of publications. A tireless advocate Grosvenor and her husband Calvin are the co-founders of the Love Better Camp. Log on and visit her interactive relationship website at www.ThePluralThing.com.
January 9, 2009
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Marital Bliss Online is a monthly e-newsletter created to encourage newly married couples to do more than survive in their marriages; we want them to THRIVE! Contrary to what the world believes, marriage is an incredible blessing from God! We want to make sure they know it!
We are a Christian newsletter, so our content will always encourage you to live according to Word of God. This newsletter will provide Hot Spot Dating Reviews, Music Reviews- highlighting music that’s especially great for married folk’ only, Hot Topics to help stimulate spiritual and personal growth, Book Excerpts from the Experts, and much more.
The Marital Bliss Team is a team of married couples with the same objective; to encourage one another to stick it out and press on through the vigorous trials that come to discourage marriage. Divorce statistics are high, but we want to bring a ray of sunshine with hopes to encourage you to keep on keepin on.
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God Bless You,
The Marital Bliss Team