Sunday, February 26, 2017

BACK TO BASICS #6 - IF IT WAS EASY

I needed a root canal in my front tooth.  So.... last week, I revisited my endodontist. (I have had quite a few root canals.)  

I like her.  She's about my age and is an expert at digging roots out of people's teeth.  She puts this little contraption in my mouth, and pulls a rubber covering over it.  It is one of the only times I am speechless.  I cannot speak with all that equipment in my mouth. 

During last week's procedure she came in to the room and asked, "Is your husband with you?"
 I replied, "Yub." 
 "Does he have gray hair?"
 "Yub."
 "I saw him in the waiting room.  He was going through your purse. He's very good looking."
 "Yub he ib. We'b bun mrrud fuhrty subben years." (I'm thinking though, "Why is he going through my purse???")
 "Forty seven years? (Evidently she is adept at translating the words people say with endodontic contraptions in their mouths) So then...he's your FIRST and ONLY husband?"
 "Yub."
 "Wow, that's unbelievable." 
"Did you ever want to leave him?"
 "No."
 "Did he ever want to leave you?"
 "No."

I would have had a different answer if she would have asked a different question like:
"Did you ever want to punch him?"
or
"Did you ever think he was impossible to live with?"

I would have said "Yes" to questions like that.
And so would Mr. Older
  
Now, if you knew us, you'd know that people think we have a perfect marriage. We don't - and have never had - a PERFECT MARRIAGE.  Because neither one of us is PERFECT. 

We do have a GREAT MARRIAGE.  We LIKE being around each other more than we like being around any other people. We have a great marriage. Perfect? Nope. Wonderful YUB.

My husband is an absolute saint. And he is a very loving, kind, Godly man.  But he isn't perfect.  People think he's perfect.  He is not.  
Good? Yes. 
Perfect? No.
Has he done things in the past decades that have wounded me?
Yes.
Have I wounded him?
Yes.
And me?  Mrs. Older?  Not perfect.

One of the unspoken boundaries of our marriage is that I never say anything negative about my husband.. and he never says anything negative about me.  Furthermore, I do not allow anyone to say even the slightest negative thing about him to me.. and he is the same way.

For us, this is a good thing.  It is a safe thing to know your husband is not complaining about you to his friends, and vice versa.But I think that those of us who have leadership roles, or public roles, have to find a way to be loyal and protective of the weaknesses in our spouses.. BUT.. be honest enough to say...

"IF IT WAS EASY to be married for almost five decades...
EVERYONE WOULD BE."
 
I am not a marriage expert, professional counselor or any thing close to that.  But..because of working in leadership roles in church, and because I am older, younger women will seek me out from time to time to ask for advice. 

I have found that if you ask the Lord to shine His light on the problem  it is often because the younger wife has the idea that OTHER PEOPLE have EASY RELATIONSHIPS. She thinks other women - her friends - never feel despair about their marriages. 
And husbands often have the same misguided appraisal of how marriage SHOULD BE.
In one way or another, one of the spouses is thinking...
"THIS IS too DIFFICULT. I'm NOT HAPPY about how DIFFICULT it is to be married." 

Because.. the basic reality of God's plan for marriage is for TWO PEOPLE TO BECOME ONE FLESH.  For us to become ONE with His Son, Jesus.. was NOT EASY.   Easy is not the same thing as worth it. Is it easy becoming one? Is it easy preferring your spouse? Not really.
Is it worth it?
A B S O L U T E L Y


So then my question is, "Are we doing a disservice to the younger couples following in our footsteps if we don't admit that if it wasn't for the LORD.. if it wasn't for HIS MERCY.. if it wasn't that He intervened and corrected our mistakes..we would be another statistic of a destroyed marriage and home."

And furthermore to give the honest TRUTH and HOPE that whatever is wrong with your relationship can be made right by calling on the Lord.  Now that's easy.  Pour out your hearts to the Creator Of Marriage.  He will intervene when TWO PEOPLE want His will more than they want their own.

(BTW: After I told him that my dentist thinks he's good looking, I asked, "Why were you going through my purse?"
Answer: looking for a piece of gum. 
I always chew gum. 
Could there be a connection between the gum and the root canal?
Hmmm..)

This is long enough.  Next blog:  WHO TOLD YOU IT WAS GOING TO BE EASY TO BE MARRIED?

XO,
Mrs. Older
(Don't forget that you and your friends can sign up to receive this blog via email by signing up - upper right corner of this page.  As you know, if you've been receiving it for any time, the only thing I send you is this blog. No ads. No sales. Just a blog.)
 



Sunday, February 19, 2017

BACK TO BASICS #5 - DADDY'S GIRL

Last blog I wrote about the truth.. the truth.. that being a Christian woman is about being like Jesus.. who WILLINGLY gave up His rights... and gave up His life.. so that He could rescue you and rescue me.   In a perfect world, a husband will love his wife more than wanting his "rights".  A husband will do what will edify his wife...and the wife will do the same thing.

OK... so...this is not a perfect world.. and we are not perfect people.

Some women I speak with are living with HORRENDOUS HUSBANDS.. (yes.. HORRENDOUS)... and to be completely honest with you... I am filled with compassion for them and the despondency they must feel as they live each day with the unloving man they are married to.

Last blog I said, stop thinking about yourself - ALL. THE. TIME.
This blog I want to encourage you that when you do think about yourself.. you should...

THINK ACCURATELY!
REMEMBER WHO YOU ARE!

If you are beaten down, depressed, despairing, despondent, discouraged and defeated.......

You are probably listening to the father of lies.

Why are you doing that?
He started in the beginning.. lying to Eve.. and he's been lying to women ever since.

Stand Up, Princess.
Take a stand, Daughter of The King.

How? 
Cry out to the Lord. 
When desperation hits.. and you feel like you're going under...

CRY OUT TO THE LORD

He always hears every cry of desperation.
I am surprised at how often women I meet as I travel to speak, or women I meet through emails and the book and columns I write are unable to PROCESS such simplicity.

They are unable to comprehend the POWER OF a SIMPLE, PRAYER OF DESPERATION. 

They expect, it seems,  a long, drawn-out explanation of nine thousand Bible study questions and answers.
But God didn't send His Only Son, Jesus, to die on a cross and resurrect from the grave so that we might continue to feel separated from Him.  His sacrifice was not simple.. but our answer is.. 

CALL ON THE LORD.
CRY OUT TO THE LORD.
SEEK THE LORD.
SPEAK TO THE LORD.
POUR OUT YOUR HEART TO THE LORD.
PRAY. PRAY. PRAY.

Does it have to be more difficult for you to believe He hears?
He hears.
He cares.
 
Ask HIM to remind you who you are.
How He loves you.
Ask HIM for the faith to believe He sees you.. He cares.

Your husband? Give him to the Lord.  
No matter how he treats you... your father, THE KING, is watching.
You are Daddy's girl..and the sister of the Jesus. 
Who is gonna dare mess with Daddy's girl... especially when "Daddy" is the Creator of All That Exists? 

ARE YOU EXHAUSTED FROM THE THING CALLED YOUR MARRIAGE? GOD WILL RENEW YOUR STRENGTH IF AND WHEN YOUR HOPE IN THE LORD.  Ask HIM to help you hope in Him.  And He will.  He gives us whatever we need before we even ask.

 "Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint."
Isaiah 40:31

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

BACK TO BASICS #4 - HAVING RIGHTS

Just today I saw an article online in which a well-known actress said that monogamy is not natural.  She has been married and divorced two times, has a child, and doesn't really enjoy motherhood all that much either.
Her premise is that it doesn't "feel natural" to be monogamous. And that's why so many people struggle with it. 

Well.. I guess I can see her perspective.  It doesn't feel natural. But.....What does "natural" feel like?

To an overweight person, natural feels like eating whatever you want whenever you want to. Does that person have a "RIGHT" to overeat? Yes.  But if she wants to be healthy she has to lay down the right to overeat.  

To an angry person, natural feels like lashing out when ever you want to lash out. Does she have the RIGHT to scream and yell and lash out.  Well, I guess so.  But if she wants to have any long-lasting relationships, she is going to have to give up her "right" to destroy the feelings of others.   

To a psychopathic person, murder seems natural. In that twisted mind, the violence is justified because of the anger inside.  If he wants to be able to live free.. he has to give up his perceived "RIGHT" to kill others.

To a liar, lying seems natural. I know people who can tell a lie without missing a beat.  Does she have the RIGHT to lie? Of course she does.  But if she wants to walk in truth as Christ commands, if she wants to have anyone who trusts her, she will have to lay down her "right" to lie... and stop.

We all have the RIGHT to be who we choose to be.  God allows every human alive the right to choose whatever we want to choose. He gives us the RIGHT not to care about Him or His standards.

What feels natural?  I'll tell you what doesn't feel natural. It doesn't feel natural to give up our rights.  Because in our fallen state... we care about ourselves first.  That is the truth.

Laying down our rights has to be a supernatural thing. It has to come from above.  It has to come from Jesus.... who.. willingly gave up HIS RIGHT TO STAY IN HEAVEN AND NOT GIVE ONE FLIP ABOUT YOU ME OR OUR BOUND-FOR-HELL ETERNITY.  How about that?  How about if He didn't say, "nevertheless not MY WILL, but YOUR WILL BE DONE."

We would have had NO RIGHT to approach God.
We have have had NO RIGHT to plead for mercy.
We would have had NO RIGHT to be called children of God.

How about we ask ourselves as we struggle with marriage, "What is God's will in this situation?" What a unique idea, no?
Yes.

At conferences, through my writing, through this blog, I hear from hundreds of women... hundreds.. and a large percentage of them are unhappy in and with their marriage and their husband.  "He isn't this. He isn't that. He shouldn't do this. He should do that." I guess it comes as a shock when I suggest:


Ask not what your spouse can do for you
Ask what you can do for your spouse.

Marriage is the place where you choose to prefer someone else.
Does it feel natural?
No. 
Being selfless doesn't feel natural to selfish creatures.


Stop thinking about yourself.
All.
The.
Time.

I did not say.. "NEVER PUT YOUR NEEDS FIRST."
I did not say.. "NEVER THINK ABOUT YOURSELF"

I am simply suggesting... suggesting.. sweet Mrs. Younger.. that EVERY NOW AND THEN..
EVERY THIRD THURSDAY?  EVERY FOURTH MONDAY??


Don't think about yourself 
ALL THE TIME.
ALL.
THE.
TIME.

The complaining.
The criticism.
The great discontent with the man you married.

Give it a rest, every now and then.  

Feel free to email me at:  awordtothewives@gmail.com Love you,
Mrs. Older

Monday, January 30, 2017

BACK TO BASICS #3- WHO CARES? GOD DOES.

So... in my last blog.... I encouraged you to NOT sit back and accept a husband who is less than God intends for him to be. And I encouraged you to pray for Him.  AND I ENCOURAGED YOU TO HAVE THE ATTITUDE OF HEART THAT WANTED HIM TO CHANGE FOR HIS OWN GOOD AND NOT ONLY FOR YOURS. I am convinced God isn't impressed with "hellfire and brimstone on others" prayers. We want Him to discipline that person.. but.. He longs to show mercy.   We want Him to act instantly, but He is patient and continues to pour grace.

And now I want to be lovingly truthful with you, even if you pray every day, you may not see a change in your husband.
WHAT?  You may see no change. None. At.  All.  Because of this, you may decide that prayer is a waste of your time and God's.  And you will stop praying because it seems like prayer isn't working.
That's normal. That's natural. But normal and natural does not result in supernatural.  I pray that YOU will...
  
....be that woman.. that one in a thousand woman.. who perseveres in prayer.  Who seems abnormal for continuing to seek the Lord. For continuing to believe there is power in persistent prayer. 

That's what I pray for you.  If it was EASY to be devoted to prayer.. everyone would do it. It isn't easy. It isn't natural to speak to the ceiling and believe there is Someone listening. In reality, there is no ceiling between you and God.  Jesus tore that veil.  When you speak, God is listening.  And He longs to REVEAL Himself to you.

How will He reveal Himself to you? I can't answer that because I'm not Him.
In my life.. sometimes He speaks through His Word so clearly that it seems like the Book was written just for me.
Sometimes, I hear Him whisper to my heart.
Other times, a sermon.
Other times, a friend.
But He speaks.
And I hear Him.
And His voice is always LOVE. POWER. A SOUND MIND. HOPE. PEACE.

And a reminder that He cares about me.  He. Cares. About. Me.

THE FAITHFULNESS OF GOD IS THE ROOT OF ALL REAL FAITH

The Lord builds our faith by sending situations in to our lives by which He can prove how faithful He truly is. 

Over time... the foundation of your life becomes Christ.  He is enough. He is more than enough.  Over time you come understand that whether people change or not, whether life is easy or not, whether answers to prayer come quickly or not...
GOD WILL NEVER FORSAKE YOU.
He will never let go of you.
He is broken-hearted about your broken heart.
HE LOVES YOU. 
My godly mother always lived a life of devotion to Jesus. I saw it first hand. I know it's true when she said,
 "WHEN YOU HAVE JESUS YOU HAVE EVERYTHING"

ANSWERS to prayer is not evidence that you have faith.
FAITH in the character of God, KNOWING that God loves you no matter what you face.. that is faith.
It's easy to type when things are going well...
But when the storm hits.. that is the FOUNDATION that keeps the house from crumbling.
KNOWING GOD. KNOWING HIS LOVE.

Each time you pray.. don't be so focused on getting answers, seeing solutions, seeing change. "Your Father knows what you need before you even ask" - Jesus reminded us.
You will never need something that He does not provide.  (This is not the same as wanting something He does not allow.)

Give yourself some time to just wait in His presence.
Just. Wait.


In His presence is FULLNESS OF JOY.
Let the Holy Spirit give you the peace you long for, the joy your less-than-wonderful marriage has sapped from your heart, the wisdom to know He is in control.

IF PRAYER IS NOT CHANGING YOU - THEN CHANGE YOUR PRAYERS.  Change them in to seasons of just wanting to become One with Your Eternal Groom.

Seek the Lord.
And not only answers from Him.

 Oh.. and by the way.. if you wait patiently, if you pray continually, your husband will most likely be affected by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Oh. Yes. He will.

"Give all your worries and cares to God, for He cares about you" 
1 Peter 5:7

XO,
Mrs. Older









Friday, January 27, 2017

BACK TO BASICS - 2

I read a story about a successful businessman who recalled his childhood.  He was never picked to be on the softball team. He was small and couldn't play well at all. His story of success has an odd twist. He didn't become a great player.  No, his lesson was "You cannot force someone to 'play ball' with you if they don't want to be on a team with you."  He learned to focus his business energy on people who wanted to be teamed up with him, rather than trying to convince people to do so. His business ventures have been very successful.  

So, let's get right to my point...  Marriage is the ultimate team sport.  You cannot become one with a person whose goal is not to become one with you

Some of you reading this have husbands who are not the kind of spouse God expects them to be.  
You might have a husband who does well financially, who is a leader in the community, who has succeeded in the areas the world and society considers successful... but God's definition of a husband's success is that he loves God with all his heart, mind and soul.  When someone loves God, their heart becomes fixed on obeying God. His main focus is God and God's will.  That he cleaves to his wife.  That his primary purpose is to become one with her.  In every way.  To care for her needs above his own, to love her the way Jesus loves the Church. 

If you husband is far from that standard, don't think it's a secret.  He knows it. And so do you.

But.. lest you think Mrs. Older is having a husband-bashing moment.. let me clarify:  

The problem is not your husband
 the problem is that
 you accept this less-than-what-God-intended partnership.  

Why have you accepted it?
Why?
Why are you allowing this in the life of the man you love?

DON'T JUST SIT BACK AND TAKE IT
WHAT?
You might say, "Mrs. Older I cannot change him.  I cannot 
scold him in to being what God expects."

THAT IS TRUE
BUT. GOD. CAN.

Pray.
Pray.
Pray. 
If you LOVE YOUR HUSBAND... YOU WANT HIM TO BE ALL THAT GOD INTENDS.

This scripture:

Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers.
 
is reason enough to not accept less than the best from your husband... because this verse clearly says that a husband needs to be considerate and respectful of his wife. Why?  So that she can be Queen Bee of the Home?  
Well... no.. so that nothing hinders HIS prayers.
What wife wants her husband's prayer to be hindered?
What man understands that there is a connection between his prayers and the way he treats his wife?

Here's advice from Mrs. Older that applies:

TALK TO GOD ABOUT YOUR HUSBAND 
AND 
GOD WILL TALK TO YOUR HUSBAND ABOUT YOU.

Ask for the faith to believe that if you pray for your husband's heart, God will change and resurrect it.  Don't pray angry prayers. Pray with a heart of love for your husband.  Pray that God will give him the desire to be the husband God expects..

First step is admitting that you have been an accomplice to his laziness by not praying about it.

Keep your mouth silent.
Except when you are speaking to God.

If you live with an impossible man...remember that with God all things are possible.

"Jesus looked at them and said, 'With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God.'"
Matthew 10:27 

XO,
Mrs. Older 

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

BACK TO BASICS - 1

I bought a new iPhone SE a few months ago.  I waited for this model because it is smaller in size and fits in to my hand more easily.  Ever since I bought it, however, my friends tell me that when I hold the phone on my left ear they cannot hear me clearly. When I switch to my right ear, everything is fine.  As unusual as this sounds, the "genius" people who work at the Apple store have confirmed this.  Left ear - static.  Right ear - clear.  So they replaced the phone. And the problem persists with the new phone.  They have no idea what is causing it.  Their next attempt is to reset the phone back to it's original settings because evidently some app or something I am transferring from one phone to another is causing the glitch.   

And so, with marriage.  Over the months and years of being married, we add more and more "apps."  We transfer them from year to year and season to season.  We have added careers, mortgages, children, in-laws, church membership and so many "apps" to what was once an "app free" marriage - a relationship that existed because LOVE could not endure it NOT EXISTING.  You could not live without one another.  

And now...  we have "hopes that have died app", "dreams that no longer exist app" , and "emotional pain that cannot be seen app".  We have added the "worry" app, the "anger" app, the "resentment" app.  And so, all we get is static when we try to become one with the "Other One In This Marriage."

So, Mrs. Older thinks it might be a good idea to "reset" and "delete" some of those apps that are making marriage a static and confusing thing in your life.   

I imagine this will be a series of blogs because, let's face it, who wants to read a 300,000 word blog...Hahahahaha.. (that's how you know I'm old.. I type "haha" instead of "LOL")

What is the #1 Basic of Marriage?


BECOMING ONE

Seriously.  You will not believe how many couples I speak to who have overlooked this most basic of basics of marriage.  

Genesis 2:24 says:  "So a man will leave his father and his mother and be united with his wife and the two will become one body." (NCV)

In our anger fueled society, the thought of being so connected to someone else that you cannot find where he begins and you end seems like a bad thing.  It isn't.  It is how LOVE is supposed to be.
So close that you breathe as one.
So close that you care for the other as you care for yourself. 
So close that his joy is your joy, his pain is your pain, his dream is your dream.

God doesn't want you to lose yourself.
He wants you to find someone who knows you in the most intimate way and wants to be connected to you forever.  
Isn't that what you crave?
Love that loves the real you?

That's what God sent to us all when He sent Jesus.
The Bible tells us that earthly marriage carries a mysterious similarity between Jesus and The Church.  Jesus And His Body.

If our view of marriage can be skewed and confused by the father of lies... then... our view of Jesus and His love for His Body fades in to the background.  The Love App... we lose it.

LOVE always wants to be ONE with the recipient of that Love.
LOVE always craves the Other.
Doesn't it?
Yes, it does. 

If we never understand that the most BASIC element of marriage is becoming one.. then we will be like I was with my phone.  

We will find a replacement, and will be sorely disappointed when the new "phone" has the same problem as the first one.  It isn't the phone that's defective it's the app we have transferred over.  It isn't "Marriage" that's defective but the apps that we transfer to it.

TOO MANY APPS.

Stay tuned. Because I am devoted to being the kind of woman of God who doesn't take her instruction to teach the younger women lightly. I am not wiser. I am not mistake free.  I am simply older. I am Mrs. Older.  

Thank you all for letting your friends know about signing up to receive this via email. (Upper right corner of this page)

I love you,
Mrs. Older



Monday, January 23, 2017

FOUNDATIONS AND THE STORMS THAT TEST THEM

SOMETIMES... our lives feel like that house looks.  

We feel destroyed and beyond repair.  We feel like a failure. We thought we were doing the right things, and yet, bad things came anyway. I hear from you.  I know what you are going through. For some, it is financial ruin.  For others, adultery has destroyed your marriage.  Some of you live in heartbroken horror at the path your children have chosen. You raised them in the ways of the Lord and now they seem lost and far from Him and His mercy and grace.  Some of you are simply spending energy trying to not let others know how DESPERATELY lonely, DEPRESSED and AFRAID your days are.  Let me tell you something about the picture of that house:  It was not destroyed by a storm. It is a house whose foundation was neglected, not built correctly, and this weak foundation crumbled the house.
 Everything that is built is built on a foundation.
If the house is damaged, but the foundation is strong, the house can be easily restored. 

Evidently, according to Jesus, it isn't the STORM that destroys a HOUSE but the state of the foundation of the house WHEN THE STORM HITS.

Jesus spoke about the kind of foundations that held strong through the storms that WILL COME.  (Luke 6:46-49). 

From what He said, 
we should not judge the state of our foundation on the LACK of storms.  Evidently, and according to Jesus, storms hit everyone.  

We should judge our foundation by the LACK of falling apart when the storm comes. And they will come. 

You have been successful in a spiritual sense if YOU ENDURED THE STORM AND WERE STILL STANDING when it ended. 

I would like to say to those of you enduring the storm of an unfaithful husband, or a rebellious child, or financial distress, or the heartbreak of sickness, or despair, discouragement and depression:

WHEN THE STORM PASSES (and it WILL PASS)
you will still be standing strong.
Your life will NOT BE DESTROYED.
God will repair your heart, your soul and your spirit.  It isn't damage to the house that matters after a storm. It's whether or not the foundation held strong.
You will not fall.
You will stand.

I have seen many storms in my life.  I have felt as if they would destroy me and my life.  They did not.  God is faithful. He will hold you. He is there.  Look up and believe.


"As for everyone who comes to me and hears my words and puts them into practice, I will

show you what they are like. They are like a man building a house, who dug down deep

and laid the foundation on rock. When a flood came, the torrent struck that house but

could not shake it, because it was well built." - JESUS








Wednesday, November 30, 2016

DIVIDING IS CONQUERING

Hello sweet women.  How I love you.  How I appreciate all your emails and encouraging words. (awordtothewives@gmail.com) I feel honored when you ask me to pray with you about something.  Thank you for that.  And thank you for telling your friends about Mrs. Older and her blog.  And thank you for hanging in there this past year or so while Mrs. Older has been writing and traveling and speaking a zillion times more than she ever did. I am blessed to know you. 



Today I'd like to just touch on a few things that God has allowed us to know about Him. Yes... allowed.  We all want to know God. But the miracle is that God wants us to know Him.. and wants us to know that He knows us.  Go figure. Why would God even care about having a relationship with us?  He just does. He just does.

When you were first dating your husband, or when you were newly married, you took note of what your husband liked because you wanted to please him. (Hopefully he was doing the same thing - wanting to please you).  It's human nature that when we love someone, or have a friendship with someone, we want to know that person. The other side of wanting to please your husband also included knowing what he DIDN'T LIKE. You may have learned little things like: he loves steak - he hates it cooked well-done; he loves to watch football games - he hates when anyone tries to have a conversation about something while the game is on. (Hint, hint honey). You get what I mean.

When it comes to God we know that He is love.  We know that when we put our faith in His Son, Jesus, we are clean and forgiven and without fear of anyone condemning us. We know that HE LOVES US.  HE ADORES US.  HE IS PLEASED WITH US utterly and completely.  Having said that, having put that in there so that you don't think Mrs. Older has become Mrs. Legalistic Church Lady...I thought it would be interesting to know what God doesn't like.  To please Him more? He is pleased with you because of Jesus.  To know Him more? Yup.

Proverbs 6:16-19 says this: 

"Here are six things the Lord hates - no, seven things he detests:
(1) haughty eyes; (2) a lying tongue; (3) hands that kill the innocent; (4) a heart that plots evil; (5) feet that race to do wrong, (6)a false witness who pours out lies; (7)a person who sows discord in a family. 

You know... I could write a million words about each one. Maybe I will in the future. Talk about those haughty eyes that look down on others and the woman who sees herself as better than others.. oh yes.. we all know her....but... I will control myself.... and.. just talk about the last one of seven:

Have you ever noticed, or thought about the truth that God despises when a person "sows discord in a family."  Yes dear woman of God, as you talk against your sister-in-law, or your sister... your mother-in-law, or brother... you are sowing discord. God hates that.  Did you realize that? It's true.  God cares about family unity.

I notice that the Bible uses the word "sows".  It gives a picture of someone who spreads tiny seeds of discord.  Small little seeds.. a sentence here.. a big deal over nothing there...

These seeds of discord.. they are sown in a way... they divide in a way that isn't noticed at first.  And then comes the horrible harvest. A family has been divided.

God despises this.  

GOD DESPISES THIS. Don't do it.
AM I SAYING HE DOESN'T LOVE YOU ANYMORE?
AM I SAYING YOU ARE NOT HIS CHILD ANYMORE?
AM I BEING "LEGALISTIC LOUISE" WHO IS MAKING YOU FEEL CONDEMNED?

I PRAY NOT.

I AM simply giving you a perspective as the holidays approach.. and for all year...

GOD HATES (yes.. the word is hate) and despises (yes.. it's a type of abomination to Him) 

when you DIVIDE your family.  HE HATES when some kind of disagreement causes ONE FAMILY MEMBER to separate from another.

GOD hates and despises division. 
In HIS family. And in YOUR FAMILY.

Remember this as you prepare for the holidays.
Remember this as someone makes a big deal out of something small.

Talking behind someone's back - a family member - is no big deal to many of us.. but...

It's something God HATES.

SO...
Don't.  Do.  It.


"Make every effort to live in peace with everyone and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord."

Hebrews 12:14

Just sayin'

Love you,
Mrs. Older

P.S. You are also invited to leave your comments.

  



19       

Sunday, November 27, 2016

WHAT IS JESUS' REASON FOR THE SEASON?

Christmas is almost here.  Who knew that 2016 was going to FLY BY?  Wasn't Christmas 2015 just, like, uh... three weeks ago?

Is it possible to have a real "peace on earth" kind of Christmas?  Are you gearing up to defend yourself from those shots some family members cannot stop taking???   Here are some things to ponder and remember.

A popular phrase nowadays is "Jesus is the reason for the season."  It's a good phrase.

I'd like to rework that phrase a bit.
It's true Jesus is the reason for the season, but a better way to survive Christmas is to ask - and find the answer to another question:  

"What is Jesus' reason for the season?" 
 
The answer:   to give up His rights as the Son of God and became the Son of Man. To save the world.

The real and often overlooked reason for the season is that Jesus was willing to GIVE UP HIS RIGHTS AS THE SON OF GOD AND BECOME LOWER THAN THE ANGELS AND BECOME A HUMAN.

The baby in the manger is there only because He was willing to be. He was willing to be a human.

How does that apply to us?  The followers of The Birthday Man?

IF we want to be His Follower (our choice).. then we must "deny ourselves" as we take up our Cross.  It' means to give up our God-given rights and lay them down in order for the life of Jesus to be seen in our lives...

HOW DOES UNDERSTANDING THIS BRING PEACE ON EARTH ON CHRISTMAS DAY?

Well..for example...do you have the right to insist that your mother-in-law stop insisting your family must eat dinner at her house every year instead of yours?  ABSOLUTELY.

Did Jesus have the right to stay in heaven instead of being born in a manger in Bethlehem? ABSOLUTELY. He gave up His rights so that you could have life. It's one meal. Will it bring peace? Is she a brat for insisting? Yup. Are you playing in to her demanding heart. Yes. Yes. Yes?  Lay down your rights. Just like Jesus did.

Does your son's girlfriend hate you?  Does he want to bring her to your home for Christmas dinner? Do you have the right to exclude someone who hates you from your home on Christmas Day?  YES. ABSOLUTELY. YES.  Did Jesus give up His right to be in heaven on thirty-three December 25ths?  UH.. yes He did.
Give her a warm welcome.  Jesus, whose birth we celebrate said, "If you only love those who love you how are you different from heathen unbelievers?"

Give up your supposed right to be angry at and jealous of women who can give their children things you can never give to yours.  Does it break your heart when your children want things that you cannot give them - and - watch them see other children whose parents can afford what you cannot?  Yes. It hurts a mom's heart for this to happen.  But you don't have the right to be angry about what someone else does have.  Lay it down. Give it up.

The core of Christmas Day is that 
Someone gave up every right He had to become lower than the angels who sang to the Shepherds in the field.

Jesus reason for the season is often not the same as ours. 

Jesus gave up His life so that He could give life to us.

Give up your rights this Christmas Day.
You will find peace on earth.

XO,
Mrs. Older

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Wednesday, October 12, 2016

HOW I PRAYED FOR YOU




 AN EXCERPT FROM THE BOOK, 
"HOW TO MAKE A MEATBALL 
Recipes For Living My Mother Taught Me"

“How I Prayed For You”
“May she who gave you birth be joyful!”
- Proverbs 23:25
            My mother frequently reminded me that she prayed for me. That she wanted me very, very much.  She says that she became a little concerned that she wouldn’t be able to have me as she was raising my brother. She wanted a daughter. So she prayed and prayed and prayed specifically for a little girl.  After just a few months she found out she was expecting again. All my life she reminded me how much I was wanted. She said to me on several million occasions,  “How I prayed for you. I prayed for you.” I never really understood how much security and self worth that instilled in the deepest part of my being until I grew up. She tells me that when my father saw me, he called everyone in the family to explode with the news, “She looks just like me!” (I do look just like my father.) She says my eight-year-old brother was thrilled too. (I’m not sure about the accuracy of that statement). All my life, the story I heard about my parent’s reaction to my birth is that I was wanted, and prayed for, and cherished and rejoiced over.  All my life my mother was joyful that I existed. Just because I breathed air brought her great joy.
            Which brings me to something I heard her teaching with great gusto to the moms who were in her spiritual care. She would ask some very pointed questions like:  “Why did you tell your child he was a mistake? Do you realize that God creates life? Does God make mistakes?” What better way to make that kid feel unwanted than telling that kid he was unwanted? It was a big parenting deal to my mother. It may not seem like a great big deal to many people, but try telling that to the person who went through life knowing he was “an accident.” She would often repeat this sentence, “If you have already made the mistake of telling your child he was a mistake, then you cannot take those words back.  But you can add words that will help toward healing. Tell him that it was a mistake to tell him he was a mistake because he is the best thing that ever happened to you. Every child is a gift from God. It is God who creates life. Who has to audacity to tell God His gift is a mistake? His gift is an accident?” Great questions Mom, great questions.

 Molly’s Meatball Lesson #59
The biggest mistake a parent can make is telling your child he was a mistake.
Don’t do it.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

SIMPLE TRUTH: "ZAP HIM" PRAYERS AND THE WIVES WHO PRAY THEM


In my last blog I wrote about what to do when your husband is your enemy. And the answer was to continue to pray for him.  Continue to love him.  And continue to give the situation to the Lord to deal with.  Simple truth is that you will NEED the HOLY SPIRIT to give you the power to love and pray for someone who mistreats you. Jesus never asks us to do something without sending us the power to do it.

There may be some Mrs. Younger's who are expecting that the result of giving the situation of your mean and nasty husband to Jesus will cause Jesus to send down lightening from heaven to zap your mean and horrible husband.  Uhhhh.... No.  

It is vital for every wounded wife to understand that Jesus is not in the business of destroying people who don't like us or treat us poorly or reject us....or Him.

I think that's why so many of us give up on praying. WE pray "Lord... Lord... ZAP HIM, LORD!" prayers. We want to see some evidence that God is just as annoyed at our husband as we are. We want to SEE SOMETHING outwardly.  We want to see our husband PAY for the way he is treating us. (God will discipline your husband.. but not because YOU told Him to.)  We expect a consequence to happen to a person who is being mean to us.. especially after we zip our lips and pray to God about it. 

Don't feel bad if that's what you were expecting.  Don't feel bad if that's what's in your heart.  Well... don't feel GOOD.. but just know that you're in good company.  You're just like Jesus' disciples James and John.  You can read the story for yourself in Luke 9:51-56.

These two disciples assumed Jesus would destroy people who rejected Him like the Samaritan town they were in had just done.  

They asked,  "Lord, do you want us to command fire to come down from heaven and consume them?
(Luke 9:54).  

They didn't really GET or UNDERSTAND who Jesus was.  Why He came.  What His purpose was.  And neither do we when our request of Jesus is to get Him to "get" someone else... or judge someone else...
The disciples felt JUSTIFIED in their hellfire and brimstone attitude.. and sometimes.. in our natural human flesh.. so do we.  A mean husband? Zap him, Lord.

But instead of agreeing with how unholy and unjust those townspeople were, Jesus rebukes those holier-than-thou disciples, saying..

"You do not know what kind of spirit you are of;  for the Son of Man did not come to destroy men's lives but to save them." 

He was MORE CONCERNED about the VENGEFUL SPIRIT inside James and John than the REJECTION of the townspeople.  Maybe James and John were expecting some mutual commiserating from Jesus about the injustice of rejecting the Only Son of Only God?  I think so.  And what better reason to call down fire from heaven than on people who are mean to and reject Jesus?  Who is perfect but Jesus? (No one who is reading this and not the one writing it, for sure)
And yet..as perfect and sinless as Jesus is... He didn't seem upset about the way the people treated Him. I wonder what James and John said to one another about Jesus remarks to them? I wonder if they were as surprised as I am to be reminded time and time again that Jesus focus is always on the heart.. on my heart.. and the attitude in it.

What better reason to call down fire from heaven than for a husband who is not being the man of God he needs to be.. or is not loving his wife the way Jesus loved the church.. or his not providing.. or is not kind... or is mean and angry... who says demeaning things to his wife and children....????  and... the list goes on and on.  We go to Jesus about the unfair situation.. we expect Him to call down fire from heaven and show that He is on OUR SIDE...


BUT.... JESUS DID NOT REBUKE THE TOWN... HE REBUKED THE DISCIPLES..
  
Jesus was LESS CONCERNED with the fact that the Samaritan town had rejected Him and MORE CONCERNED with the vengeful spirit inside James and John. 

Uhhhhhh Ohhhhhhh

When you go to the Lord to speak to Him about someone in your life who is being unfair to you, your spirit needs to be in tune with the Spirit of God.  When our spirit is bent on revenge, justice, rebukes and correction... we are not praying according to the will of God.

The Son of Man did not come to destroy your husband's life but to save it.  
Simple truth: Jesus loves your husband enough to die for the sin he is living.
Yes... He died to give your husband LIFE.

He wants to HEAL your husband's heart.  He wants to HEAL you. He wants to heal your home.. and heal your children's wounded hearts. (Next blog we will discuss what your arguing is doing to your children.)

Your husband needs healing.  Something inside him is not healthy if he doesn't understand the way to love his wife and family.  It's called sin.  We are all infected.

Pray for the Lord to HEAL your husband... not ZAP him.
Pray for the Lord to REVEAL Himself to your husband
And while you're at it.. ask the Lord to HEAL you.. REVEAL Himself to you.

God is not unfair.  And God sees your broken heart.  
And He will heal everything you give to Him to HEAL.
Give the hurt to God.
Let God deal with your husband while you simply deal with God.
He loves you.

"He heals  the brokenhearted and  bandages their wounds."
Psalm 147:3 

"The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to preach the Gospel to the poor. He has sent me to heal the brokenhearted
to preach deliverance to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to preach the acceptable year of the Lord." - JESUS
Luke 4:18-19

XO,
Mrs. Older