My 2017 Review

THE GENEROUS WIFE:

At the end of each year, I take the time to talk to God about The Generous Wife. Does He still want me to write? Is the mission the same or is there something new I need to explore? Do I need to take on a new theme or drop an old one? Is there some new resource or help I can incorporate?

This year I was blessed to have a small cyber-retreat with Chris from The Forgiven Wife. She’s a gifted writer and had created a bazillion questions to consider and pray over as a way of exploring God’s direction for ministry. She made my prayer and review time so easy. Thanks, Chris!   :)

That said, I will continue to write The Generous Wife posts on a daily basis to be that gentle reminder to grow your marriage (prayer prompts and resource links will continue as well).

My sweetie and I just watched The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings. I took the time to write down themes I saw in the movies and here is one that I think explains my heart for The Generous Wife. (If you can’t see the YouTube clip, click here.)

Saruman believes it is only great power that can hold evil in check. But that is not what I have found. I’ve found it is the small things, everyday deeds of ordinary folk that keep the darkness at bay. Small acts of kindness and love.  Gandalf, An Unexpected Journey

When you smile at your husband, when you listen to his words, when you invite him for a walk, when you kiss him hello, and million other little things … you build your marriage, you heal his heart, you heal your own.

It’s the small things done again and again that affect great change and growth.

Some days I am discouraged by “smallness,” but then I look through the years of my marriage and I see the amazing power of those small acts of kindness, generosity, and love.

MARRIAGE MINISTRY:

Paul and I continue to pray and work toward helping folks and their marriages. We facilitate a monthly marriage group and work with a few couples in real life. Online we write, answer emails, and this year and into 2018 I’m spending a fair amount of time updating and cleaning up websites. The Generous Wife has a new theme that is more mobile friendly. The Generous Husband is also bright and new, and you’ll see a new look on The XY Code within the next couple of weeks. Our original site, The Marriage Bed, will hopefully be updated sometime this spring. It’s a far more complicated site. Prayers appreciated.

We continue to explore ways to help small to mid-sized churches with marriage ministry and we are praying about how to reach different generations and cultures. We hope to create a hub for Spanish resources this year as well.

PERSONAL LIFE:

Over the past few years I’ve picked a word as a theme to explore. While that has been amazing helpful, I feel like I need to have a bit more self-discipline in different areas of my life.

I was going to create some New Year resolutions, but then I saw Michael Hyatt’s book, Your Best Year Ever, and I thought I would use it as a way of exploring personal direction. I was so excited when I ordered the book, only to find that it was a pre-order and I won’t be able to read it until January 2nd. Ah, well, maybe slowing down and working the process will be good for me. I will share more about this as I read the book and plan my year.

I have a number of “self care” goals in the making, as well as some creative fun. My art blog may morph into something more. Who knows.

Well, that’s it. I look forward to the many adventures of 2018.

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Prayer Prompt: Please pray for Paul and me as we move into 2018 and look for opportunities to serve couples and help them build their marriages.

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