Friday, 28 January 2011

A Piece of the Puzzle

"Make this tabernacle and all its furnishings exactly like the pattern I will show you." Exodus 25:9

As a rule I find doing jigsaw puzzles relaxing but there are those frustrating times when you just can’t find the right piece or you keep trying to make pieces fit that don’t. Barbara Rainey of Family Life shared an interesting perspective in a recent posting on Moments to You.

"Many times in marriage, all we can see are the pieces. We see the romance part. We see the conflict part. We see the housekeeping part. We see the bill-paying part. We see the parenting part. But because we spend so much of our time focusing on the individual parts of our marriage, we don't always see them in the bigger picture our Designer had in mind .

But the pattern is there nonetheless, and it's contained in the package of God's Word.
I want you to be encouraged that the pattern for your marriage isn't something you were responsible for creating. It's not based on feelings that can be strong today and much different tomorrow. The biblical pattern and plan for your marriage was created in the mind of almighty God, whose wisdom is unrivaled and whose love for you is beyond all bounds.
If you keep putting the pieces where they belong, His pattern will start to show. His design will take its beautiful shape in the form of your marriage

So what does it mean to put the pieces where they belong? It could be trial and error, keep trying pieces and see if they fit. Or it could mean to look at the picture on the box, i.e. God’s Word and begin to assemble the pieces as He spells out in His Word. He wants more than anything for your marriage to glorify Him, for the completed puzzle to be a demonstration of his grace, mercy and love.

I want to thank Bethany for her comments of this past Wednesday. I want to thank her for her transparency and willingness to share her painful experience as she has sought God’s help in dealing with infidelity. Where on earth could this puzzle piece fit in a marriage meant to bring glory to God? It requires the faith to believe that all the right pieces are in the box.


Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Crossing the Delaware

“Que Sera Sera”… Whatever will be, will be. Some resign themselves to a life of depending on fate. Others follow the thinking of Edmund Burke who said, “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men (and women) to do nothing.” Sadly many unhappy couples resign themselves to a marriage that is less than satisfying which is less than what God intended.

A posting by the American Association of Christian Counselors recounted a critical Revolutionary war battle. "During the Revolutionary war in 1776, the American forces were so outnumbered that they were forced to retreat from New York, a retreat which did not end until the crossing of the Delaware River at Trenton. With severely reduced forces that were scantily clothed and poorly armed, the American troops were horribly depressed. Washington did not give up hope, and Henry Knox followed his lead – there would be no reason for despondency. It was on Christmas night that Washington made the decision to cross the Delaware, directed by Knox, to surprise the Hessian forces at Trenton, capturing 1000 men as well as supplies. This event gave a much needed boost to the American morale and, most believe, changed the course of the war."
You’re thinking okay now you have really lost it. What on earth does the Revolutionary War have to do with my marriage? IF you are in a less than God glorifying marriage you are facing or have faced your own Delaware River. You too can become horribly depressed or you can garner the courage for a surprise attack. Armed with humility and a willingness to forgive or ask for forgiveness approach your spouse. You just might capture the heart of the person with whom you are, figuratively speaking, at war.

Like it or not you are in a war. Satan would like nothing better than to bring down a Christian marriage. Our culture stacks the odds against you by telling you that your religion is either irrelevant or that you are intolerant. In fact God’s Word gives you the ammunition to fight for your home, your family, and your life. The Apostle Paul says that we are to put into practice what the Word has told us. (Phil. 4:9), and then the peace of God will flow, from the God of peace, into your heart and life.

Monday, 24 January 2011

Feeling Blah Today?

Psalm 118:24
This is the day the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.

Barbara Rainey of Family Life writes:
"If you woke up feeling especially blah this morning, you're in good company. January 24 is now officially "the most depressing day of the year."
Those are the findings of Dr. Cliff Arnall, an English psychologist who specializes in seasonal disorders at the University of Cardiff in Wales. His formula for analyzing such things includes seven variables--the weather, personal debt, monthly salary and even the amount of time since Christmas, among other things--that determine people's feelings of happiness.
He figures January 24 is when credit-card bills start rolling in, reminding us how we got carried away again with our holiday spending. By now many of our New Year's resolutions have fallen by the wayside or at least been riddled with pockets of compromise."

For Christians their joy is not dependent on the calendar or based on the events of the day. Be a contrarian, why not celebrate today? This would be a great day to take your husband/wife out to dinner, or bring home a little surprise, or send them a love note. This is a day that the Lord has made – rejoice and be glad in it.