Decide today that you're in your marriage for the long haul.
When we see
marriage as a covenant, not a contract, it’s confirmation that we are
meant to stay together until death parts us. In A Model for Marriage, Jack and Judy Balswick point out that “the
core characteristic of a covenant marriage is commitment, a factor that
is profoundly important to marital stability, according to research
The very nature of wedding vows implies a
covenant, but for most brides and grooms, the common attitude is to see
marriage as a contract that can be broken. Typically, a couple—despite
vowing to endure better or worse until death—live by the principle that
they’ll stay together only as long as their spouse fulfills their end of
the bargain. That’s an attitude that feeds into the “short haul”
approach. read more
Recently, a friend’s letter arrived that reminded me of
the importance of resting our hearts on what we know to be true about
God, especially when faced with circumstances that lead us to question
He wrote: “As a family, God has been speaking to us
recently through the death of my youngest sister, Freda, on August 31.
We have no details yet. She sailed on September 18 of last year... after
10 years’ patient waiting for the way to open. read more
Are you a content, satisfied, joyful Christian? If you are, can you say that you are consistently content, satisfied and joyful? I know few Christians who are consistently content. I used to be one of the discontent.
I grew up in an abusive situation and experienced a lot of disappointment, discouragement and discontentment because of it. For many years I believed good things wouldn’t happen to me and that it was better to expect nothing so I wouldn’t be disappointed. Well, it didn’t work, and I was still miserable anyway. See, I was expecting nothing, and nothing is what I got.
It was a breakthrough for me when I realized that God truly loves me unconditionally and has good plans for my life. He wants to bless me and be good to me. But He also wants me to trust Him and put my expectation in Him so He can do great things in my life. read more
Many women go through life wounded and broken. But no matter the source of the hurt, Christ can repair the damage.
I grew up around a lot of negative lifestyles. For years as a child, I experienced grief, abandonment, abuse and homelessness. Some people think that if you ignore past hurts, they will just go away. But the anger and the core feelings that are born in an abusive environment can strangle an individual's emotional and developmental growth.
Many women have had to deal with the kind of mistreatment that was intended to control and subjugate them. Abuse of any kind breeds fear and damages the soul, made up of the mind, will and emotions. Ill-treatment devalues a woman and wears down her self-respect. read more
You'll need more than
cosmetics for great-looking skin and a lovely appearance. You'll need to
understand the health and beauty connection.
truly does radiate from within. A healthy, vibrant woman defies age. As
a testimony and reflection of our self-esteem, inner beauty and
vibrancy, true beauty is the result of inner vitality, balance, health
and happiness, not vanity.
nutrition, stress-relieving exercise and a positive frame of mind are
requirements you must tote along on your continued journey toward
complete balance. A balanced body and a beautiful spirit are better than
the very best cosmetic application or surgery. read more
Having the shape of your dreams isn't your ticket to happiness. It's learning to love the skin you're in.
a world where everyone looks like Barbie and Ken. Try to imagine
yourself as a Barbie, talking to the other Barbies and Kens.
Would you like yourself? Would you think you were as pretty as the other Barbies? Would you be envious of them?
everyone in the group be happy with how they look? Or would some be
depressed, struggling with a negative body image? Would others feel
better than everyone else based on how they look? read more
Your heavenly Father has a beautiful plan for your
life—one that no one else on Earth can fulfill because you are unique.
You are the only one of you that God has.
However, religious tradition and Jewish custom have been
relentless in their suppression of women. Even those extraordinary
women who have overcome female subjugation and have launched out and
done exploits in Christ’s name have had little recorded about their
triumphs of faith. read more
the Scriptures, Abraham's territory was limited only by what he could
envision. When it comes to your spiritual inheritance, how far can you
new season from God seems to have a theme, catch phrase or byword that
characterizes it. In the most recent season, that catch phrase has
expressed a particular hunger in our hearts and has become the theme of
many of our prayer lives: "Increase our territory."
widespread appeal of that phrase and its message—that God wants to
increase the territory of those who call out to Him—has been apparent in
the almost frenzied popularity of a slim, simple little book by Bruce
Wilkinson called The Prayer of Jabez. The book expounds on Jabez's
prayer, recorded in 1 Chronicles 4:10, which included a cry for an
increase in territory. The Bible says that God granted his request. read more
When we get our sexuality right, we bring God glory and put the gospel on display. When we get it wrong, we dishonor Him and fail to tell the story that the world so desperately needs to hear. Watch Mary Kassian talk about the quiet counterrevolution of women who love Jesus and delight in God's design for gender.
To a woman, whether single or married, what matters most is knowing her worth in the eyes of God.
What do you think of yourself? How would you describe
yourself to someone if you were being objective? Would you want to get
to know you if you met yourself walking down the street? Well, it’s
time to get under the skin you’re in.
I’ve told the story of the time I was deeply hurt in a
relationship—so deeply I had a party with the devil who served me
Unbelief Tea and Resignation Pie topped with “Why Me?” sauce. Well, the
man got married and divorced. He became a Christian. He came back to
me. I was thrilled.
Then we had a major disagreement. He married someone else
without telling me. (Can you believe he got married on me twice? What
was I thinking?) read more
With so many dating options today, waiting on the Lord for a mate has taken on a whole new meaning.
(not her real name) had just broken her engagement to a successful
businessman, who turned out to have serious moral failings. She was 31,
and looking for real solutions to some of the relationship dilemmas many
singles face, so she began regularly visiting a home Bible study I
attended that addressed singles issues.
evening on the drive home, she coyly asked me this question: "What is
the procedure if someone is attracted to another person in the Bible
study?" Gulp. I searched my mind for a file called "procedure," but
found none. "Well," I said, finally, "they could try and mingle over
cookies and juice at the end of the evening." That was the best I could
offer, and I knew it was lame. read more
Your way to God begins on the day of your conversion, for
conversion marks your soul’s initial return to God. From that moment
you begin to live and have your being by the means of His grace.
After your conversion, your own spirit—the human spirit
(which is deep within your inmost being)—is touched by God and is made
alive and functioning. Your spirit—in turn—invites your soul to compose
itself and to turn within, there to find the God who has newly come to
reside at the center of your being.
Your spirit instructs your soul that, since God is more
present deep within you, He cannot be found anywhere else. Henceforth,
He must be sought within. And He must be enjoyed there, alone. read more
When Jesus died on the cross, He opened the way for us to get personal with almighty God.
any believer if spending regular quality time with God is a challenge,
and he or she will almost always say yes. We manage to make time for
lots of other things—entertainment, work, school and church events—but
we find it difficult to spend daily time in fellowship with God by
praying, worshipping and reading His Word.
I too experienced this difficulty until God taught me a valuable lesson
on crisis management. I used to spend time with God once in a while or
when my life was in big trouble. Then the Lord told me to seek Him
continuously, or diligently. Eventually I learned that if I ever wanted
to stop living from one emergency to the next, I needed to seek God
every day as if I were in desperate need of Him—even during times of
tremendous prosperity and blessing.
Change is not simply a season in our spiritual journeys; it is a process we undergo for the whole of life.
her labor pains intensified, I watched in amazement as my typically
sweet-natured, mild-mannered wife took on the appearance of Sigourney
Weaver in Alien. In one startling moment her peaceful
appearance was replaced by a taut jaw, steely eyes and the bark of a
drill sergeant preparing young soldiers for the battle of their lives.
The thin line of sweat that had formed on her brow began to pulsate in
rhythm with her temples.
wanted to run for my life, to get as far away from this frightening
creature as I could. But the next moment she was back to normal—normal,
that is, for a pregnant woman about to give birth. read more
You may be knowledgeable in the Scriptures and know God, but is He relevant in your everyday life? Watch as Priscilla Shirer talks about her search for abundant life and how she was able to feel His presence, and discover how you can find your promised land.
alienation and loss of affection are only a few of the effects brought
on by allowing the "green-eyed monster" to reign in your marriage.
When envy invades a marriage relationship, the results
are particularly tragic. Husband and wife, once a union of love and
partnership, now compete for recognition and spiritual “one-upmanship.”
Typically, jealousy among spouses masks itself in
legalism—creating discord and suspicion. It effectively destroys the
potential for teamwork by fostering individual kingdom building rather
than cooperation. Jealousy is commonly rooted in insecurity and is
defined as that “peculiar uneasiness” we experience when we see others
receive the attention we desire for ourselves. read more
over the real meaning of "headship" often leads to marital conflict,
but the Bible doesn't give husbands the right to be tyrants.
a Bible-believing Christian, Mike* was the spiritual leader of his
home. He believed that in order to be a faithful man of God he must
always "be in charge." His wife, Jill*, and their four children
graciously submitted to his authority.
Mike insisted on controlling every aspect of home life. Jill was not allowed to handle any aspect of the family finances. read more
The greatest lesson the soul has to learn is the fact
that God, and God alone, is enough for all its needs. This is the
lesson that all His dealings with us are meant to teach; and this is
the crowning discovery of our whole Christian life. God is enough!
If God is what He would seem to be from our study of Him;
if He is our Shepherd; if He is really and truly our Father; if, in
short, all the many aspects of His character and His ways as laid out
in Scripture are actually true, then we must, it seems to me, come to
the positive conviction that He is, in Himself alone, enough for all
our possible needs, and that we may safely rest in Him absolutely and
But Christ has not been all we want. We have wanted a great many things besides Him. read more