Which List?

October 11, 2014

in the generous life

Seth Godin’s recent post talked about two lists – one with all the good stuff in your life (the successes, the great circumstances, etc.) and one with the tough stuff (the failures, the criticisms, the bad breaks, etc.). His thought was, when you’re stressed, you tend to pull out one of the lists and that motivates your choices.

I think this has marriage applications.

If you have a positive marriage list (the sweet gift he brought home yesterday, that time your husband was there for you, etc.) and a negative marriage list (his habit of leaving his socks on the floor, the time he didn’t phone and he was three hours late, etc.), which list will you lean on when you have a stressful marriage moment? Which list will motivate your choices?

It’s an interesting perspective. I’ll have to give it some thought the next time Paul and I have a stressful moment.

The doors we open and close each day decide the lives we live. Flora Whittemore

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Prayer Prompt  Ask God to help you embrace the positive in your marriage and give you wisdom to see and deal with the negative.

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The XY Code: 5 Things I Wish Someone had told my Wife about Male Sexuality The title says it all.

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Ferguson Values: 5 Ways to Build A Durable Marriage How to help your marriage repel the pressures of life. 

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Image courtesy of stockimages / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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Small Things

October 10, 2014

in the generous life

I was wandering around in The Generous Wife archive and read this post. It encouraged me and so I thought I would send it out again, hopefully to encourage y’all.

On Sundays my church gathering is studying 1 Peter (this week it was 4:7-11). One of the points our pastor made was that we need to be “deliberate and faithful to use our gifts.” He spoke about a variety of gifts and how they are all important. I think for the most part we don’t understand how the simplest of things we do can be a gift from God and a gift that can be used to bless those around us. We sort of discount it as just something we do … that anyone could do.

And while that’s true to a degree, the bottom line is that we can do it and God wants us to use what He’s given us. Our gifts may seem small, but small can have great impact and be strategically important. And small tends to become big over time if we will be faithful and consistent in what we do.  

Years ago, I was “just an ordinary wife and mom,” changing diapers, baking dinner, and doing all the usual things of life. I started to learn about generosity. One day I thought it might be fun to blog about it and The Generous Wife was born. All these years it’s been just a simple blog, a small thing, a few words written each day, but during those years I have watched God use this small thing to change lives (my own included). I’m still “just an ordinary wife and mom” (now grandma) and I’m still doing “small things,” but I have a bit more faith in what God can do with small things because of the history that I have with Him. He can turn a few fish and a loaf of bread into a buffet for a crowd. He can turn a kind word or a simple gift into a life changing moment. Do not underestimate our God!

You have gifts too. Yes, you do.

Maybe you’re a terrific cook. Maybe you have a way with people that communicates warmth and acceptance. Maybe you’re great with numbers, or you have a way with plants. These gifts may seem small or insignificant to you, but what God can do with them is amazing! Let me repeat that ~ what God can do with them is amazing!

Why not make a list of the things that you do well, things that you have a natural gift for and things you enjoy doing (no matter how small or unimportant they may seem). How can you bless your husband with those gifts?  How can you bless your kids, neighbors and friends?

Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms … so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.  1 Peter 4:10-11  NIV

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Prayer Prompt  Ask God to show you your gifts and abilities. Ask Him how to enjoy them and use them to bless your sweetie and others.

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Here are a couple more bloggers who have taken on the CMBA challenge ~ marriage wisdom from family.

Hot, Holy & Humorous: Sex Wisdom I Learned & Teach
Pearl’s OysterBed: Words of Wisdom: Food Equals Love

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Are you shopping online this week? Please start on the Shop and Support TGW page. It won’t change your purchase price, but I will receive a small commission.

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Image credit © Martinahavlova | Dreamstime.com

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How Many Kisses?

October 9, 2014

in the generous life

When your husband is busy (but not with anything terribly important), give him a little kiss. A couple of minutes later give him another kiss. Wait a couple of minutes for another little kiss. 

 

See how many kisses it takes before he figures out you want more.

A kiss can be a comma, a question mark or an exclamation point.  Mistinguett

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Prayer Prompt  Ask God to teach you how to bless your husband sexually.

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Refine Us: The Secret Sauce to a Great Marriage You don’t have to wait for a crisis before pursuing the marriage you desire.

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Happy Wives Club: 7 Easy & Fun Date Ideas You Should Do This Weekend More ideas to put on your date night to-try list.

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Image credit © Gabriel Blaj | Dreamstime.com

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What kind of lighting do you have in your bedroom?

 

Basic lighting is good (you don’t want to run into things), but there are so many lighting options that can give you a little romantic ambiance.

candles
twinkle lights
paper lanterns
a dimmer on your nightstand light
(mirrors to reflect light)

What lighting options do you find fun or romantic?

In the right light, at the right time, everything is extraordinary.  Aaron Rose

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Prayer Prompt  Ask God to show you how to make your bedroom a special place for you and your husband.

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Here are a few bloggers who have taken on the CMBA challenge ~ marriage wisdom from family.

Stupendous Marriage: Lessons From 40 Years of Marriage
The Forgiven Wife: Louder Than Words
The Generous Husband: Words and Wisdom: Family

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Holly Gerth: You’re Already Accepted “Real friends tell you when you have something in your teeth.”

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Image courtesy of foto76 / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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Fancy That

October 7, 2014

in the generous life

Going out for a cheeseburger? Take a few moments to pretty up or go all out and dress up to make the outing special.

Hubby can dress up and join in, or not. It’s mostly about having some fun and giving your husband a little eye candy. 

A dress that zips up the back will bring a husband and wife together.  James H. Boren

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Prayer Prompt  Ask God to help you inject a little fun and romance into everyday life.

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(in)courage: When You Feel Like Damaged Goods “Other’s preferences and decisions to choose or reject us, don’t define our worth ~ Jesus does. And He chooses us every time.”

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Encourage Your Spouse: My Husband Told Me To Get Out Very interesting post. I’m going to have to ruminate about how it applies to me. Yes, very interesting.

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Image credit © Graphic79 | Dreamstime.com

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Goodness, I missed the first Sunday of the month cyber prayer meeting!

Let’s take a moment to pray for all the marriages represented by The Generous Wife blog.

Gals follow by email, RSS feed, Twitter, and Facebook. Posts are shared by friends, in church bulletins and more. There are a lot of us the world over. Different nations, cultures, ages, life seasons, but we are all women looking to see our marriages grow stronger and more lovely.

Please pray for those who are struggling with infidelity, for those facing an empty nest, and for those who are in financial difficulty. Ask for grace, growing intimacy, and creative date nights. Pray for help over every stress and ask for every blessing you can think of. I figure if we all pray, we’re likely to cover all the possibilities.

Every time I have had a breakthrough in my life, it has been because of Prayer.  John Maxwell

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Prayer Prompt  Ask God to bless the marriages of generous wives everywhere. (It’s OK to add the marriages of your friends too!)

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Intimacy in Marriage: Marriage is Easy. Said No One Ever. Three things to ponder.

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The Forgiven Wife: When There’s a Chipmunk in Your Marriage (Must read cuteness.) Remember to tend your marriage.

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Image credit © Anett Kneifel | Dreamstime.com

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CMBA_challenge_14

I’m a member of the Christian Marriage Bloggers Assoc. and during the month of October there is a weekly blogging challenge. This week we’re being asked to write about “words and wisdom that we have received from family members.”

This is a difficult challenge for me. My family didn’t talk much about marriage, relationships or sex (and I rarely saw extended family). My parents ended up divorcing my first year of college and their marriage was marked by significant tensions.

I think the one thing I can point to is something my father did ~ he exhibited genuine grace.


(I’m the little one on the right. Gee, I wonder where my love of books came from.)

 
I watched him try to love us all where we were (regardless of how great or messy we were being at the moment). I knew that I was loved and that love was more than a few cheap words. He modeled a Christ-like love and grace that has impacted my life and eventually my marriage.

Offering that tenderness, forgiveness and thoughtfulness that comes with real grace may not save every marriage, but it is a necessary building block for those that survive and thrive.

If you are looking for something to encourage you in this area, you may wish to read Grace Filled Marriage by Dr. Time Kimmel.

 

Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassion, kindness, lowliness, meekness, and patience, forbearing one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. And above all these put on love …  Colossians 3:12-14a  ESV

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Prayer Prompt  Ask God to teach you about His kind of grace and how it can impact your marriage.

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Image credit © Lori Byerly

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