Archive | June 2012

Bringing Out the Superman in Him

“Hello, My husband and I have only been married for 10 months. I am 24 He is 31. First I have a much higher sex drive than he does and I am starting to be cranky around him and would rather masturbate because when we finally do have sex it really wasn’t worth my while so to speak. We’ve been together a total of four years and things weren’t perfect before marriage but it was better. I am trying to become a Better Christian woman now that I am saved. Although it’s a struggle with my husband because he isn’t as passionate about CHRIST as I am. I know prayer is the key but in the mean time I am hurting because of his disconnection both physically and emotionally. I’d like him to lead as he should and I have no problem with being submissive in our marriage. In other words a strong GODLY man is what I desire and is extremely sexy to me. I don’t want anyone else I want him to be that man. I admit that I married him while we were both unsaved and that Now I’d like to see a change that only Our GOD can bring into a life. Second we have two children ages 2 and 5 months mind you I am only 24 and fill I have sacrificed a lot . I dont want to end up bitter and divorced but I admit I have resentment. Please pray for our family and offer some wise advice. Thanks “

There were some things I can relate to and others that I will depend on God to help me answer.

At my church, we have had several guest pastors lately while our pastor was ill.   One of them did a message that took us all over our bible, which I liked very much, and he really spoke to my heart.   He spoke of several things that I have had a problem with in the past, and I hope that I am healed of.

In Genesis, man had a perfect unity with God.   God gave man everything that he needed, even the realization that he needed a helpmate, a wife.  God provided for Adam and Eve’s every need.   He only gave them one rule….do not eat from the tree in the center of the garden.   Out of all the trees in the garden, only one was forbidden.  Should be easy, right?  Nope.  It was the temptation.  The serpent knew it and he used it.  And do you notice that in Genesis 3:6, the woman was the leader and the man followed her?   I never thought of it that way.  Adam knew what God said.  He knew it was wrong, but he followed his wife in eating the fruit.  Ladies, even today, we are still trying to take the lead when it really is our husband’s responsibility given to him by God.

This goes back to the reader’s comment “…it’s a struggle with my husband because he isn’t as passionate about CHRIST as I am” I know I am guilty about judging my husband’s relationship with Christ.   Who am I to judge?  I am responsible for MY relationship with Christ.  I can’t make him do what he is “supposed” to do.   My responsibility is to respond to my husband with what God told ME to do.   Ephesians gives us our roles….

Husbands:  Love your wife as Christ loved the Church. (Ephesians 5:25)

Wives: Submit to your husbands as to the Lord. (Ephesians 5:22)

There is that word….submit.   There are some women that equate that word to slavery, but hear me out a minute.  I use a Ryrie Study bible (NASB) and in his notes about submission, Dr. Ryrie, a Dallas Theological Seminary professor states, “…the subjection is to be mutual and based on reverence for God. The differing responsibilities, if followed bring harmony, but if ignored, they bring difficulties.”  The latter is what I think this young lady is experiencing.

If you are like me, you take that, “If you want something done right, you’ve gotta do it yourself” attitude.  I brought that into my marriage.   There were things that I had always done “this way”, and even when our son was born “my way” was better than “his way” even though in the end we accomplished exactly the same thing and got the same result.  My husband has always been a hands on kind of man.  He wanted to be involved in all the details of our wedding.   While I breastfed our son, he wanted to be able to hold and feed our son, too.  He wants to be involved in everything.   My expectations of love from him were different than the way he loved me.   We really had bad communication issues.   The more I didn’t get my way, the more distant I felt towards him.  I am still that way at times as well, and I am hopeful that I am more apologetic when I do get that way.

Ladies, if you were to ask your husband what is the #1 thing that makes him feel loved, what would he say?   I know what my husband would say.  Respect.  Respect lifts a man’s spirit in ways that we cannot know and understand.   When a man feels respected at work and at home, he’s like Superman.   He feels strong.  He feels secure.   He feels loved.  Ladies, it starts here.   If our husbands don’t feel respect from us at home, it starts a downward spiral for them.  I hope all of your husband’s are like mine in this way….when we went through my refusal years, I did not respect him very much at times, and sin fed into our sex lives.   If he didn’t do anything that I considered respectful to me, sex was my tool to show how I felt.   But I didn’t realize this until much later….my husband continued to love me like Christ loves the Church.   He didn’t leave me.   He didn’t have affairs on me.  He didn’t reach out to porn on the computer.   He loved me so much that he was willing to sacrifice his own sexuality and his own needs to show me how much he loved me.   Does that ring a bell?   Didn’t God give up his precious, only Son for us?   His sexuality is one of the most precious gifts to me, and he was ready to pray that God take it all away if it made me happy.

Yes, it is hard sometimes to respect a man who doesn’t seem to respect you.  God didn’t tell us that it was okay to be disrespectful if we weren’t being respected.  God didn’t tell us that we were supposed to take the lead when our husband doesn’t seem to want to like Eve did to Adam.   We are to respect our husband no matter what.   There is bound to be ONE thing that you find respectful in him that can start the wheels turning in your relationship.   “Honey, I really appreciate that you go out day after day and work hard for our family to meet our needs. “ Even words that show you desire him.   My husband says if a man can see that you are being truthful, showing is more important than saying.  Then once he gets a little bit of that “Superman” feeling in him, he will be ready to try to please you as well.

Pray for all aspects of your husband’s life.  Pray for his job, for temptations, his choices, his health and stresses in his life, his attitude, his walk with Christ, his self image, his obedience to God….pray for his wife.   I don’t know how you are praying, but pray that if there is anything in you that needs changed, that God will bring it up to you to fix in yourself first.   If your husband sees that you get more pleasure in masturbating than in sex with him, pray that you can show him your desire is for him and not for your own personal gratification.  Pray for a time when the two of you can sit down and talk about your sexual needs.   Ask him what you can do to make intimacy and pleasure better for him.   Communicate your needs to him.

To the writer of this email, I am not certain how long you and your husband have been saved, but sometimes it is overwhelming, and it is the hardest right after you were saved.  There are doubts about if you were really saved or not.  Life seems harder at first.  It takes time to settle into what the bible says and it is not easy to just start doing what the word of God says when you are used to doing something else.  If you are not already in a church together, I suggest looking for a church where you both feel comfortable with the teaching and the relationships.  He may need to join in a men’s group and make friends who can help and guide him along, being examples for him.  In the meantime, my suggestion to you is this…. 1 Peter 3:1-6 says, “Wives, in the same way submit yourselves to your own husbands so that, if any of them do not believe the word, they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives, when they see the purity and reverence of your lives.  Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes.  Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.  For this is the way the holy women of the past who put their hope in God used to adorn themselves. They submitted themselves to their own husbands, like Sarah, who obeyed Abraham and called him her lord. You are her daughters if you do what is right and do not give way to fear.” I have seen this in my own mother, who has been married to an unbeliever for over 40 years.   It is one of the most beautiful things I have ever experienced.  I have seen things in my father recently that may mean that he has given his life to Christ, but even if not, my mom hasn’t waivered in what God calls her to do.  I strive to be that same woman to my husband.   If there are times that I am disappointed in his walk with Christ, it is not my job to judge him or take charge of his spiritual life.  It is to walk like Christ, so that he might see Christ in me.

original article

 

Lord, Comfort Me in Times of Trouble

This chapter was a good reminder to me about the job of the Holy Spirit in our lives.  When we become a Christian, God sends us a helper than indwells us, which is the Holy Spirit.   He is Christ in us.

Stormie talks about two of the jobs the Holy Spirit has… a comforter and a helper.   Tough times are going to come.   Being a Christian isn’t easy, especially newbie Christians.   There are times when we need to take a deep breath and holler “HELP!” to the Holy Spirit.  He is there.   During times of pain or heart ache, call on the Holy Spirit for comfort.   When things get so overwhelming you don’t know what to do, call on the Holy Spirit for help.   He is right there ready and willing to fulfill your needs.

She lists four reasons we have difficult times

(1) Sometimes they happen so that God’s glory and power can be revealed.  Sometimes we don’t understand why things happen.  We may never understand it on this side of heaven, but God’s glory will be revealed in it.

(2) God uses difficult times to purify us.  God helps us in troubled times to reveal to us that we need to live for HIM and not for our own selfishness.    He wants us to let go of all the things we lust after and to cling to him.

(3) Sometimes our misery is caused by God disciplining us.  Yes, as children of God, we need to be pruned sometimes, so that we can bear good fruit, and yes, it means discipline.    One of my favorite songs is “Praise You in This Storm” by Casting Crowns, and in the song, the lyrics say “I was sure by now, that you would have reached down, and wiped my tears away….stepped in and saved the day, but once again, I say AMEN and it’s still raining….”  Sometimes we wish we could pray away our problems, but sometimes God isn’t through with us yet, and we have to say “I will praise you in this storm… and I will lift my head….that you are who you are ….no matter where I am….and every tear I cry…you hold in your hand….you’ve never left my side….and though my heart is torn…….I will praise you in this storm.”

(4) Sometimes we are caught in the middle of the enemy’s work.  Yes, Satan takes great delight in messing with your life…making you doubt God and his provision for you.  He will destroy your life if you let him.   God will defeat the enemy.  Call on him…praise him in difficult times… and he will bring SO much good out of it.  Walk with the Lord in times of trouble or despair.  He will lead you through whatever you are going through.  AMEN!

No matter how dark the situation may be, God is the light of our life.   Ask God to reveal his presence to you in dark times.   Give thanks to God is all times, in all situations, and not just in good times, but in bad times as well.    Reach out to God, and he will take your hand and lead you out of the pathways of despair.

Another song I like…. You Are God Alone … “You are God alone…before time began….you were on your throne…. you are God alone…and right now….in the good times and bad…. you are on your throne….you are God alone.  God doesn’t disappear and hide when bad times hit you.  He is right there in the middle of the battle with you.  Call on him to help you through.

Throwback Thursdays: How Often Should Women Have Mammograms?

Article of reference is here at the ACOG site.

Every time I turn around, there are new recommendations about mammograms.   Some say not to start them until you are 50…some say not to start until you are in your 40′s, but only every 2-3 years.  Now in a recent article from the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologist has issued new guidelines for mammography screening.   They are recommending them being offered yearly starting at age 40.

When I was about 38-almost 39, my doctor started me with mammograms.  I didn’t have a history on my maternal side of the family, but my paternal grandmother had it, and it is possible that her mother had it as well.   I was told by my doctor that it was important to have them annually.  Now, I missed one or two myself.  I think I was supposed to have one last year, but my doctor’s office forgot to schedule it with me, and in my busyness, I never got back with them…. but about 2 years ago, I had my first scare… there was a spot on my mammogram film, and I had to have a sonogram done.  It ended up being dense breast tissue and nothing to be concerned about, but I know God and I spent A LOT of time together that day while waiting for my results!  I can’t imagine waiting until I was 50….

I digress…. back to the article.

Do you realize that while I was researching this article, there were websites that were saying that doctors shouldn’t teach their patients how to do breast self exams?  Are they crazy?  I had a friend DIE of breast cancer.  She found the lump in her MID 20′s by a breast self exam!  How would it be explained to her family if she died without ever knowing she had cancer?   That is just crazy in my opinion.

So what are your thoughts?  Have you had a mammogram?  When will you start if you haven’t?  Do you do breast self exams?   Do you know how?

original article

Nocturnal orgasms….are they sinful?

Hi, I have a question about women experiencing orgasms during their sleep. I’ve had this happen to me a few times (without any sort of sexual stimulation) in the past 2 years since my marriage, and I’ve found it to be quite wonderful! Whenever I tell my husband, he’s been very supportive (though he does pretend to be jealous :P). I’ve read that it is perfectly normal for women to experience this. I’m just wondering if it is considered “ok” for Christian women to experience this, without feeling guilty? I would love to hear more thoughts on this!

This is a great question!  It came from one of our readers “Got Questions” submission.  I don’t experience this very often, but I have experienced this.

What is a nocturnal orgasm?  A nocturnal orgasm is sexual arousal during sleep that awakens one to perceive the experience of orgasm.  Nocturnal orgasms usually don’t involve any physical stimulation (masturbation of any kind), and are usually associated with your biggest sex organ….your brain.  Something in your brain has been stimulated enough that muscles contract, and your genitals are not excluded from these contractions.   The dreams or thoughts do not have to be sexual in nature.

Her main question is, “is this okay for Christian women to experience this without guilt?”  That questions is actually twofold.

My first answer is no…. if there is someone else in your dreams or subconscious that is fueling this desire in you.   Recently, my family went to see The Avengers at the theater.  Sat in the front row of the Movie Studio Grill since we didn’t get there with much time, so that’s all that was left!  The subwoofers in front of me rattled me the whole movie.   After the movie, I commented how I thought that Thor (Chris Hemsworth) was really cute to my daughter…. to which both my son and daughter were like MOM!!!  I assured them that their Dad was my true Thor and ultimate attraction, but I could think someone else was good looking!  Now, if I had a dream that night and fantasized about Thor and it led me to have an orgasm, well then yes, I just sinned.   Lusting for another man, whether in real life or in my imagination… that is sin.   The only man I should lust after would be my very own dashing, loving husband….

My second answer is yes… if your desire in your dream is your husband.   Sometimes we have dreams or fantasies in our dreams that we wish would happen in real life.    If you are in the middle of a really hot dream with your spouse as your leading man, it is very easy to get your brain so worked up, so stimulated, that your genitals start swelling and you start having uterine contractions and you orgasm.

Now, from articles and research I have read, sometimes your dreams or thoughts do not have to be sexual in nature in order to have nocturnal orgasms.   Sometimes your brain can be so stimulated or over-stimulated from your days activities, it can cause this in your subconscious as a need for release.

What are your feelings on nocturnal orgasms?  Have you had them before?  Are they frequent or infrequent?  How would you answer this question if a sister in Christ asked you this very same question?

Is it really the answer?

It must have been a hint from the Lord.   Recently I received not one, but two emails about divorce.

In this crazy day and age, divorce is so prevalent.  It is so easy to hire a lawyer and go your separate ways…that makes everything better, right?  Does it really make all the anger go away?  All the pain?  All the insecurity?  We live in such a me centered society, all that we ever think about is ourself, so why not be happier if we weren’t married to a problem anymore?

See, I come from a completely different mindset.  My parents currently have been married over 46 years.   They have had their share of ups and downs.  My dad’s unemployment could have done it in just that!  But they have never sought a divorce over anything.  My DH and I… when I married him and signed on the dotted line on our marriage license, it wasn’t a contract to me… it was a covenant.  I made a covenant to my husband and to God.  Love, honor, cherish…in sickness and in health, for richer or poorer, until death do us part.    A life long promise to be faithful to him.  My kids, I guess because they see it in their friends, ask us if we’d ever divorce, and we both tell them that it is never an option for us.

The first email that came in was from Dr. Gary Chapman, from the 5 Love Languages.  Click here to see the full article, but the gist of it was someone asking why should you go through the hard work of fixing a broken and unsatisfying marriage.   I think to a lot of people who consider divorce, they think it is an easy fix, but it really isn’t.   If you are miserable now, and your divorce your spouse, won’t you take the miserableness into your next marriage?  What about if you have kids?  You’ll be yoked to your ex-spouse for a long time with kids.  And what about how the kids handle the divorce?  “Oh, they’ll be fine.”, but will they really be fine?  My kids don’t ever have to worry about us divorcing, but they are worried we would divorce…..  we underestimate the stress and pressure that us getting divorced cause on our children.   Divorce just isn’t an easy way to solve the problem.

The second email I got was from a devotional from Biblegateway.com called “Considering Divorce”  It used passages from Isaiah 40: 26-31.  Here’s the devotional and what it says….

“Does your marriage seem hopeless? Perhaps you’ve tried and tried, yet nothing has changed. You’ve pleaded with God to fix the problems, but he doesn’t seem to be listening. So you’ve decided to solve it on your own. You feel you have no choice but to get out of the marriage. Don’t give up! God is bigger than your problems. In very few cases does God condone divorce. In the majority of struggling marriages, God will make a way if you will wait for him. You may feel as if he doesn’t see your struggle, but he does. He will give you strength to fight for your marriage.”

I bolded the middle section on purpose.  It applies to everything in our lives.  Reminds me of the first Veggie Tales video I ever saw….the video “Where is God when I am scared”, there was one of those catchy songs that sticks in your head…. “God is bigger than the boogie man.  He’s bigger than Godzilla or the monsters on TV… oh, God is bigger than the boogie man and he’s watching out for you and me.”   This is so true.  Why do we put God in a box and expect that he can’t help us…. or ever further down that road that he doesn’t want to help us or won’t help us.   That’s just crazy!!

So if you are hitting a really hard patch in your marriage, it isn’t the end of the road.   Pray about it and wait on the Lord.  He is listening, and he is going to help you.   Remember that his timing is not our timing.  Be patient.   Our strength will rise as we wait on the Lord.

Lord, Set Me Free from Negative Emotions

This chapter comes at a time of revelation for me.   Seriously, I harbor anxiety during the week.   The ONLY times I do not feel anxious…. Wednesday night (Worship team practice), Thursday night (my Ladies bible study) and Sunday (church).  Make sense?   Days of the week that I find myself totally enveloped in God.

Let’s talk our way through her seven good ways to get free of negative emotions….

1.  Refuse to be anxious.   I hate being anxious because it means I am not trusting God.  I KNOW that God can do all things, but why do I still get so anxious sometimes.   I need to post John 16:33 everywhere I look.  “In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”   I am less anxious and at peace when I spend more time with him.   I need to remember not to be anxious about anything.

2.  Refuse to be ruled by anger.  I have one employee at work that I have the hardest time getting not getting angry at.   Her voice grates my soul when she chooses to be argumentative with me.   I am so quick to anger with her.   For the most part, I am one of the least likely persons to get angry and hold on to it.    This is one area that I am in need of major work… this situation with my employee.

3.  Refuse to be dissatisfied.  I feel that I do very well in this area.  I have so many friends with so much more than we do, but I am really at peace with our situation in life.

4.  Refuse to be envious.  This kind of goes along with #3.  I refuse to make myself miserable over what someone else has.  If I was supposed to have something, God would provide it.   The Joneses either have what they have because (a) God provided or (b)  they are going to get themselves in trouble for being in over their head trying to keep up with someone else.

5. Refused to be depressed.  I had to stop here.  This is mine.  It’s me at my worst.  It’s sometimes very visible to others, but mostly it’s invisible to all but God, Satan and me.   Satan loves to use it, too.   It may be my current “thorn” in my flesh.   When I catch myself, I begin reciting the first verse that comes to my head like a mantra… “I can do ALL things in Christ who strengthens me.” DEPART FROM ME, SATAN!

6.  Refuse to be bitter.   I try my very hardest not to be bitter.    I try not to hold onto anger.  I try not to let bad situations or bad people consume me.  I’ve seen what it does to others, some that are very close to me.  I can’t do that.   God doesn’t want me to live with this.  I just let it all go.   It’s something I have had to learn, but I feel pretty confident I’ve beaten this one.

7.  Refuse to be hopeless.  I’ve felt hopelessness in the past.  I never want to feel it again.  I’ve banned it from my life.  I felt hopeless up until the moment when Christ became my Savior.  I refuse to feel that way ever again.  Dear ones, don’t be consumed by hopelessness.  My hope is in God.  He loves me.  He watches out for me.  He does what is best for me.   My hope is in Jesus Christ.

I love this last paragraph before her prayer…. “Negative emotions reveal doubt.  If we thoroughly trust God, what do we have to be anxious about?  Why would we be angry, dissatisfied, envious, depressed, bitter or hopeless?  Yet we are all susceptible to experiencing these kinds of emotions at some time in our life.  So don’t feel bad about having them, but don’t live with them either.  Refuse to allow the ugliness of negative emotions to mar the beauty of life God has for you.”  AMEN, sister!  AMEN!