Thursday, July 23, 2009

But They're Driving Me Crazy

This particular post is one of my favorites because it talks about one of primary parts of my "profession." The next phrase in Titus 2:4 is "to love their children." There are times when this is hard because our children may be driving us crazy. However, when this happens with me, it's usually because I'm trying to get something done for myself, and my children are unoccupied. Many times selfish motives on my part are involved.
Involved . . . now there's what I need to be doing. How can I involve my children in my life? I mean in the everyday tasks, chores, "to do's" that need my attention. Just the other day, I thought of a way to keep my daughter busy with me in the kitchen . . . since she is always asking me, "Can I help?" I certainly don't want to say no, but then I end up tripping over her. So I decided that I would get out some "plastics" and let her wash dishes. I tried this, and she was busy for 20 minutes taking care of something for Mommy. WOW! Did I get a lot done!!
What about my oldest who is now five? Even though I want my sons to grow up to be strong and capable men working on manly things, I also want them to have a first-hand knowledge of what it takes to run a household. There is a two-fold purpose for this way of thinking: (1) They will be able to be out on their own someday preparing to have a wife and children, and (2) they will be able to sympathize and even help their wives when they are married and caring for a family.

Of course, then there's a man who can cook . . . now that is a special treat! :)

I think the most important thing I can be doing during all that "involvement" is what God's Word tells me to do in Deuteronomy 6:4-7 - "Hear, O Israel: The Lord our god is one Lord: And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and wit hall thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: (here's the key) And thou shalt teach them diligently (that word means it takes effort, time, and hard work) unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up." As each activity is enjoyed, I can be talking to my children about the Lord in every aspect of our lives.
Some of my favorite verses the Lord brings to my mind when I think of my children and the incredible responsibility I have to teach and train them, evangelize them, and disciple them when they come to know the Lord are as follows:
Proverbs 22:6 - "Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it." Some people say that this is not a promise, but I believe it is based upon the wording in the text. If we do our part to train our children, the Lord will keep them there for us. The phrase "he will not depart from it" just seems that simple to me. It doesn't say he may not depart . . . it says he will not depart. Pretty clear, IMHO.
Ephesians 6:4 - "And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord." Nurture is training, and admonition is the discipline that happens when they choose to disobey the training.

III John 4 - "I have no greater JOY than to hear that my children walk in truth." (all-time favorite) I think what I love about this verse so much is that it says the children will walk in truth, not just believe the truth. That is just so powerful to me. My children, when taught the truth, can make it a part of their lives such that it (the truth) becomes a part of the the very fabric of who they are as individuals. They will remain strong, never wavering from following the Lord Jesus Christ.
There are sooooo many more verse I could share, but the main focus I am trying to communicate here is that each of the verses listed, and the many more the Lord provides for us in His Word, all require involvement. I have to be involving myself in their lives and them in mine. As I do that each day, throughout the day, I know my children will want to be with me, spending time doing the things we love to do TOGETHER!!

Oh, this has been one of my favorite posts. I love my children so much!!! I so want for them to be everything the Lord wills for their lives. I know they will find great JOY in knowing Him and doing His Will! As I obey the Lord, and my children see my example, I know that I am "loving my children," even in the daily parts of life. :)

Monday, July 6, 2009

But do I LIKE him? :)

Now, for the next lesson that we younger women are to learn . . . "to love their husbands." Why do I need to be taught this? According to Strong's, the word love here in Titus 2 is the word phileo, which is that "liking" kind of love. I chuckle to myself here because there are many times when liking someone is a whole lot harder than loving them. We girls don't usually have a hard time loving with that unconditional, yes-I'll-lay-down-my-life-for-you, kind of love.

BUT . . . :)

Do I enjoy picking up your socks? Do I want to iron your shirt? Do I want to make your lunch or dinner? Wives, fill in the blank for your husband?____________________________ It's not always easy to like them when the daily part of life is in our faces all day long. :) This is where the choosing part of love comes in.

If you stop and think right now about what attracted you to your husband, can you say that whatever it was still does attract you to him? What about the other way around? Do you make yourself special just for him?

I know one challenge I have in the busy daily scheduled life I lead is taking time to do something for my husband that's "out of the ordinary" of the everyday, but it's something that I know he likes and is special to him.

Now, here's the hard question . . . do I serve him? cough, cough, sputter, sputter WHAT? You mean . . . wait on him? Do I give him the things he needs with a cheerful smile? What does my body language say to him? Yes, girls, even being a little s*xy for him is important, in the right setting, of course. What do I do to make my husband feel special and important?

Here's the challenge - this week, right now if possible, take time to think of one or even two things you know your husband enjoys, whatever that might be, and do it for him as soon as possible. It could be a favorite meal for dinner. It may be an outfit he likes for you to wear. Could it be a way that you do your hair that he really likes or even ;) turns him on? :)

Whatever it is . . . DECIDE! Then, do it! Even if he's made you upset this week, set that aside. Pray for the Lord's direction to help you forgive him for whatever he's done, mention it only to the Lord, and then serve your man! If something needs to be discussed or resolved, think very carefully if it's something that can wait until after your special time with/for your husband, and set out to accomplish whatever it might be to encourage to him. Let the Lord take over and bring both of you closer to Him and each other. What a wonderful way to "love your husband."