And They Lived Happily Ever After~ Ruth (Part 1)

I am thrilled about this next Bible Study: Four consecutive Mondays, I plan to publish a wonderful study including many life applications from the Book of Ruth: “When A Fairy Tale Came True.”

Hope you get to relax, elevate your tired feet, sip on your favorite cup of hot tea or cocoa as you turn to Ruth 1. Know that I have prayed for you to receive abundant blessings as you study God’s Holy Word along with me. I want to credit my Pastor, Dr. Stephen Davey, because I learned much about this Bible story from his sermons on Ruth.

I have loved fairy tales ever since I was a young girl. My childhood favorite fairy tale is Cinderella. Cinderella rose from rags to riches. She went from living with a cruel stepmother and jealous, mean stepsisters, to being swept off her feet by Prince Charming. Cinderella married Prince Charming and the best thing about it was….they lived happily ever after.

glass slipperThere is a similar Cinderella story in the Bible, but without the glass slipper and without the villain. The Bible story has the bitter mother-in-law, the beautiful but poor damsel in distress, and the dashing Prince Charming who rescues the damsel in distress. The damsel in distress went from rags to riches.

Even though it reads like a fairy tale, the story of Ruth really happened. God’s handiwork is being beautifully knitted behind the scenes of distress. God was arranging all the details so that the fair maiden would be rescued at just the right time, in just the right way, by just the right man.

The incredibly good thing is that God is doing something beautiful behind the scenes in our lives when we face hardships.

In certain times of our lives, whether single or married, we are all damsels in distress. We may have our Prince Charming right by our side, but the trials and tough times will come.

Confession of Heaven Bound Homemaker: I am a damsel in distress in a certain area of my life as I write. My Prince Charming and I are praying about a certain “need” we have in our lives. Please pray for God to direct and meet the need.  I appreciate it so very much! Thank you, sweet ladies.

Dear Heavenly FatherJust as God was working behind the scenes in the true story of Ruth, I know God is working behind the scenes in our lives too. As a result of knowing this fact, I am no longer “in fear” but I am now “in trust.” Being in fear is miserable. I know from personal experience. Being “in trust” is liberating. The power of crying out to God is incredibly awesome. I can already see glimpses of His mighty Hand working good through this area of need. I cannot wait to share with you ladies, hopefully in the near future how God answered this prayer of need, so please keep praying. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! If only the cyber world could show the deep degree of my “thank you” to you for praying for us.

I am thankful my son set up my blog and I just do what I like to do: write. He showed me the other day how to see my stats. I was surprised to find from the stats that over 1000 different people read my blog this past month. I had no idea that many people were coming to my website. I feel humbled and I also know many of those 1000 ladies are in distress in certain areas of their lives too. I am not the only lady in distress. The hardship you are facing may be hurt, health, finances, loss or other stresses on your life or in your loved one’s life. Tough times go along with life on this earth.  If everything were perfect in this life, we would not ever want to leave this earth and go to our heavenly Father. If everything were perfect, we would not pray in dependence on our Father. I am praying for you ladies right now.  My heart goes out to you. God knows your name and need.

“Lord, touch each of the dear ladies who are reading these words right now in a mighty way.  They each have a need. You know their need. Lord, I cry out to You to meet their need and to show each lady they are very precious to You. Increase their faith. Increase my faith. We are trusting You for the impossible. Thank You, our loving Father, in advance for working beautifully in and through the situation. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen!”

Now, breathe deeply and smile showing more than three teeth, dear ladies…His Shoulders are so much bigger than our shoulders and He wants to bear our burdens. Leave them with Him, and let us have a day of rejoicing. If you or I Smiletake the burden back…let us hurry and quickly shift Shoulders. God may not deliver us from the trial at this time, but He will deliver us in the trial.

  • My favorite Scripture in this season of life (yes, I have Seasonal Scriptures) is Philippians 4:4. “Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice.”
  • My Seasonal Scripture when I homeschooled our children was Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.”
  • Do you want to know my favorite Scripture when I am in need of keeping my thoughts in check? Philippians 4:8 “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true (Bible), whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”
  • You have probably already guessed my favorite New Testament Chapter. I love LOVE Philippians 4.  You may want to check out my post on Philippians 4 called, “12 Ways To Have A Healthy Mind.

I also love daily applications, so when I study the Bible, I ask the Lord to reveal applications I need for my life. I have underlined throughout this beautiful love story of Ruth, questions to ponder and life applications. I have put in bold, the Godly character qualities I saw in Ruth.

Lord, may we all be ladies who seek to please You by allowing You to work Your Godly character in and through us.

Scripture Reading: Ruth~ Chapter 1

Once upon a time, there was a peasant girl, named Ruth who lived in a very worldly heathen land called Moab. In Moab, they worshipped false gods.  Moab meant wash pot. A wash pot was used to get dirt and grime off of feet.

You can only imagine what Ruth went through living amongst worldly dirt and grime. Even though Ruth lived in a heathen culture with false gods, Ruth did not allow the wicked culture to define her. Instead, Ruth stood out and would later influence ladies for generations to come by her trust in the Lord and her devotion to Him.

Do we allow our culture to define us, or do we influence our culture by our obedience to our Saviour? God cared about this peasant girl who lived way out in dirty, filthy, worldly, heathen Washpotville. God cares about you and me too. God reached out and touched Ruth. He reaches out and touches each of us. We are all so very blessed in so many ways. Lord, may I count my blessings, one by one.

One day, a Christian family arrived in Moab; Naomi, her husband and two sons. This family went through a worrisome time of famine in Bethlehem. I cannot fault Naomi’s husband for wanting to take care of his family in a time of famine. The problem was that Naomi and her husband looked at their situation and compared it to the prosperity going on in the world. Moab is a picture of the world. Naomi and her husband both knew Moab was a country of false gods.

Even though Naomi and her family went through a worrisome and fearful time in Bethlehem, they went through a tormenting and grievous time when they moved to Moab, known for its paganism. Have you and your husband ever been in a famine where it seemed like God was not answering? Has it ever seemed like God did not care? Have you ever been in fear that God would not provide? When times get hard, do we look to God, or do we look to what the world has to offer? Remember this truth: God allows us to be in famine-like situations, so we can learn to live by faith and not by sight. Pray with your husband for wisdom and direction. There is no safer place to be than in the center of God’s will. What may seem like a disaster, may be a stepping stone for God to work great things in our lives.

garbage dump
Garbage Dump

Naomi, her husband and two sons left Bethlehem, the name meaning the place of Bread to move to Moab, the garbage dump. The decision to move towards the world cost them dearly.

Well, there was a treasure amongst the trash in Moab; Ruth. Ruth married Naomi’s son and they lived happily ever after…not so. Instead, tragedy struck and Naomi’s husband and all her children died. Can you imagine? Poor Naomi! Naomi had a Job’s life. Ruth and Orpah must have been newlyweds since no children were born out of the marriages. Naomi and her two daughters-in-law, Ruth and Orpah are now widows, who are alone in the heathen country of Moab. It seems to be a hopeless situation, but God is the God of the impossible!

One day, Naomi heard some good news about Bethlehem and decided it was time to go home. Naomi means “pleasant.” Naomi asked for her name to be changed to Mara, because she said the Lord had dealt bitterly with her.

I put myself in Naomi’s shoes. Naomi has been stripped of all earthly possessions that would make a wife and mother content. I cannot imagine my husband dying and then all my children dying. That is one of the most tragic stories ever! I would probably initially feel anger and bitterness too. I think it is only natural.

I know ladies who have lost their husband and I know ladies who have lost a child. My mother lost two children; a full term baby daughter died at birth and her only son, my brother, at age eighteen in a car accident. I can still remember the day of the car accident like it was yesterday. Oh, how we were all so hurt and grieved; especially my parents. God gives special grace to those who go through such a hardship in life. If you are in that situation, please know that God cares! In time, the Lord lifted each of these ladies I know up to where they all became a sweet testimony of the Lord’s grace. If we knew that today would be our husband’s last day on this earth, would we do anything different? What extra kindness would you or I do to show our love for our husband? Let us plan to do that kindness today, just because…

For Naomi, Moab, a picture of the world, had become a place of death. Ruth’s name means “companion, friend and vision of beauty.” Orpah means “stiff-necked.”

  • Naomi is a picture of the backslidden Christian lady.
  • Ruth is a picture of the new believer; a lady sold out to the Lord.
  • Orpah is a picture of the double-minded lady.

Ruth’s Decision: Naomi decides to turn from her backslidden state and to return to Bethlehem. When Naomi took steps to be in God’s will, Naomi began Ruth clung to Naomito be blessed. Even in her sorrow, Naomi exalts the Lord while speaking to her daughters-in-law; “the LORD deal kindly with you, as ye have dealt with the dead, and with me. The LORD grant you that ye may find rest…” (Ruth 1:8,9) Notice that Ruth is noted by Naomi for her kind character. Bless Naomi’s sweet heart.  Even though Naomi was bitter, Ruth had evidently seen the reality of God in Naomi’s life and Ruth was saved because of Naomi’s witness.

Naomi believed she could offer her young widowed daughters-in-law no hope of protection, so in her thoughtfulness, she tried to encourage them to return to their mothers. Ruth clung to Naomi! Ruth was decisive and Orpah was double-minded. Orpah eventually went back to her heathen culture. Naomi encouraged Ruth, her daughter-in-law to count the cost. It is here that Ruth articulates her thoughts beautifully and in such a touching way, it still touches us today:

And Ruth said, “Intreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God. Where thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried: the LORD do so to me, and more also, if ought but death part thee and me.” Ruth 1:16,17

Ruth had counted the cost! Wow, this has got to be one the greatest utterances of true conversion in the Old Testament! We know for certain from this testimony that Ruth had been converted to faith in Christ. Even when others leave around her, Ruth is dedicated to the Lord.

Recent picture of my daughter-in-law
Recent picture of my daughter-in-law

What a tremendous love for her mother-in-law too! Ruth was loyal. I notice the touching love of this relationship more now since I am a mother-in-law. I love my daughter-in-law, Jodi! She is a delight. I love my sons-in-law too. What a blessed addition to our family. Our family just keeps getting bigger and better.

You know, I never liked mother-in-law jokes. I do have a good sense of humor, but honestly, mother-in-law jokes do not encourage a healthy family relationship. I love the relationship between Naomi and her daughter-in-law. Naomi and Ruth’s relationship is a beautiful love story in itself.

A mother-in-law needs to treat her daughter-in-law like her own daughter and on an equal basis. She must never be jealous of the relationship of the daughter-in-law and her son. The mother must stop serving her son and accept the new relationship. Most opinions need to be left unsaid. She must remember the daughter-in-law was trained up in a different family and may do things differently. Accept her and her ways.

Both mother-in-law and daughter-in-law must work at having a good, God-honoring relationship with each other. I read that one of the top ten marital problems are with in-laws.  None of us want to be the cause of stress in our children’s marriages. Let us do whatever it takes to have a healthy in-law relationship. Let us do what it takes to put our spouse ahead of our in-laws if the in-laws are causing unnecessary stress in the marriage. Daughter-in-law, make an effort to become good friends with your mother-in-law. God intends for this relationship in every family to be a beautiful relationship and a rewarding friendship.

Coming up in the next post, Prince Charming Boaz rescues Ruth, the fair maiden in distress, and they lived happily ever after. It occurred to me that this is true for all Christians. One day, we will all live happily ever after. A story is being written about you and about me, and we will have a happy ending to our story. What an encouraging thought!

The backdrop of the story of Ruth is now Bethlehem, the city where our Redeemer was born.  Boaz is the picture of Jesus Christ who rescued you and

Jesus Rescued Me
Jesus Rescued Me

me from our sins. Right now, life may be hard and we may be damsels in distress, but let us remember, Jesus Christ rescues us moment by moment in our problems, not necessarily from them. Let us also remember, there is a happy ending to every Christian lady’s story….it is a fact and not a fairy tale; in heaven, we will all live happily ever after.

Let us bow our heads and thank the Lord right this minute for being our Rescuer. “Where would I be today Lord, if You had not rescued me from my sins?  I can remember that day perfectly. It makes me happy thinking on the day You rescued me! If you had not rescued me, I would not have met my Christian husband at a Bible Study and I would not have had our love story. I would not have had our children and grandchildren.”

“Where would I be in the future when I died if You had not rescued me from my sins? I would not have a happy ending in heaven and I would live unhappily ever after. Where would I be this moment, if you were not rescuing me in my hardships right now? Instead of peace in my heart, I would be in turmoil. Instead of faith, I would have fear. Instead of hope, I would have hopelessness.  Thank You Lord, for being my Rescuer, my Redeemer!”

Coming up soon~The curtain rises and the Enchanting Romance of a fairy tale Fairy talestory that came true unfolds in Ruth 2.

Marriage is Under Attack! What Can I Do?

God puts Christians around unsaved people in order for Christians to be a witness to them. Years ago, we lived by an unsaved neighbor. We helped the neighbor out when she needed help. The neighbor knew she could call on us anytime. We also shared the plan of salvation with her hoping she would get saved.

Our neighbor cursed in her everyday language, but would continually apologize to our family for her cursing. She would say, “I’m sorry, I keep forgetting ‘who’ I am around.” I never once mentioned anything to her about her cursing.

One day, Melinda, our daughter, was helping this neighbor organize one of her rooms.  At that time, Melinda was in a courtship with Jeremy, whom she has been married to for three years now.

Melinda~ Just Married
Melinda~Just Married

This unsaved neighbor gave Melinda worldly marital advice: “You should live with him first, and then decide if you want to marry him.” The neighbor sincerely thought this was practical advice and saw nothing wrong with it. Melinda explained to the neighbor, in her sweet way, that God says in the Bible we are supposed to marry, and it is not right to live with a man outside of marriage.

How perverted the world is getting toward marriage! The new generation coming up now is skipping the “marriage part.” Many of them are living together without even a thought that it might lead to marriage. Marriage is under attack.

Today, the greatest danger to marriage is not divorce, but that marriage is ceasing to exist.

I feel such sorrow for people who do not know Jesus. Many of these people who do not trust Jesus as their Saviour also choose to have no morals.  It is really not surprising that this neighbor would encourage Melinda to do a worldly thing.  We should expect sinners to act like sinners.  What was surprising to me was that the neighbor’s advice had already failed with her only daughter.  Our neighbor’s daughter had a child out of wedlock while living with a man. Eighteen years later, this daughter is still unmarried and has chosen an immoral lifestyle. Bless her heart; her life is a total wreck.

Americans once thought divorce was the biggest problem in marriages.  Today, the biggest problem is that marriage is being thrown out all together. Our culture is now doing away with the God ordained institution of marriage and couples are choosing to live together instead.  According to a recently release from Pew Research Analysis, barely 50% of all adults in the United States are now married as compared to 72% in 1960.

Why the shift? As a result of American culture throwing the Bible out, what is “right” is now considered “wrong” and what is “wrong” is now considered “right.” When a culture throws the Bible out, that which is “evil” is now called “good.” Those who object to evil are considered as troublemakers and as hateful. Look at what is happening over the stand on marriage being one man and one woman as the Bible teaches.

How can we make a difference in a society that is throwing the Bible out? God says that women play a huge part in being “light” in a dark world.

“The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things; That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.”  (Titus 2:3,4,5)

  • What can older women do? Today, more than ever, we need wise older women to realize they are in the best years of their life to be examples to the younger women. They are to encourage them by passing on good Biblical advice. When our children leave the nest, we are not washed up and ready for pasture.  The Godly wisdom that empty nesters have gained through the years must be passed on to the younger women. We are needed. God said it: See Titus 2:4,5  (Photo~ I styled Melinda’s hair on her wedding day while she instructed me every step of the way.)

    Styling Melinda's hair on her Wedding Day
    Styling Melinda’s hair on her Wedding Day
  • What can young married women do? As Titus 2:5 instructs, develop Godly character by having a sound mind (not giddy and silly), being discreet (self controlled), chaste and good. Love your husband. Notice in Titus 2:4, the husband comes first in the list before children.  Why? Husband is first priority.  The word for “love,” in reference to the husband in Titus 2:4 is from the Greek word, meaning philos~ Love your husband has a double meaning:
  • to show affection
  • be a friend

Questions?

  • What if I don’t feel love for my husband at this moment? Remember, love is a commitment, not an emotion. We love our husband by having right thinking and right actions; then the emotions will follow suit. Have selective amnesia and forget all the good that we do for our husband, if that causes us to have expectations.
  • Am I daily showing my husband affection, or am I too tired for him?  Am I daily developing a closer friendship with my husband? If not, what can I do to improve?
Be a Keeper at Home
Be a Keeper at Home

Young married women: love your children. This time, the word “love” in reference to one’s children, has a different Greek meaning and is maternal fondness of ones children.

  • Married mothers are to be keepers at home. God said it. I did not want our children in daycares, while I worked outside the home.  I knew in my heart that placing our children in a daycare was not God’s plan. I am grateful our daughter and daughter-in-law are keepers at home.  In the Greek, the words “keepers at home” have a triple meaning:

1.  Stayers at home
2.  Guard
3.  Domestically inclined

How can a mother who is working outside the home be a stayer at home? How can a mother working outside the home guard her children’s hearts and guard her children and home from worldly influences? How can a mother working outside the home feel very domestically inclined after a tiring day of work?

I graduated from college in elementary education and taught school before I got married.  By the afternoon, I was worn out from working outside the home and I was only in my early twenties. When we had children, we obeyed God and I quit my job outside the home and became a “keeper at home.”  I have no regrets about this decision. God never said it would be easy to be a keeper at home, but God did say for mothers to be keepers at home. Why? Because God knows what is best for the family. God is Pro-Family!

The June Cleaver Days
The June Cleaver Days

I grew up in an era where the Moms stayed home and the Dads earned the living.  I call it the “June Cleaver Days.” I can remember seeing a daycare for the first time in the 1970’s. I was shocked that moms dropped their babies off at a daycare and then went to work. I realize there are extenuating circumstances where the mom has no other choice but to work. In these cases, when the mom’s heart is to stay at home, God blesses. God looks on the heart.

  • What can the single lady do?  Devote these single days to the Lord by serving Him. Keep your focus Christ centered. More than likely, when you least expect it, the Lord will bring into your life, your future husband.  Protect your purity as the priceless gift to your future husband until after you say, “I do!”  The Bible teaches, “She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.” (Proverbs 31:12)  “All” includes doing one’s future husband good and not evil before even meeting him.

My first purpose in starting “Heaven Bound Homemaker” was to encourage women to deepen their walk with the Lord; to know Him and experience Him. My second purpose in starting “Heaven Bound Homemaker” website was to glorify the Lord by teaching women as Titus 2:3,4,5 instructs us to do: to love their husband and to love their children.

I Love You!
I Love You!

It is discouraging how fast our culture is spiraling downward because of our culture throwing the Bible out.  As our culture moves away from God and the family, we need to be God fearing ladies who stand in the gap for the family. We can be  ladies who make a good difference for the glory of God just by simply obeying what He teaches.  God allowed us to be born at this time to stand up for His Word and to stand up for family; to be a light to a dark world.  No matter how dark this world gets, let us remember darkness can never extinguish light.  That is an impossibility. Marriage is beautiful and if we follow God’s Word as wives, we are light in a dark world.

Let us toss worldly marital advice and teach others to do so too. May our marriage be an encouragement to  others to follow in our footsteps. May we be an example to our children and to others. We can never tell our husband and our children we love them too much!

Goodbye for now~ I just got into a hurry to tell my loved love letter with heartsones just how much they are loved.

Today, as you show love to your family, remind yourself, “I am loved with an everlasting love!” Jeremiah 31:3

Christmas,Trees, and Wives

I enjoy looking at beautifully decorated Christmas trees glittering and shimmering with lights. I like to go downtown for the lighting of the magnificent towering Christmas tree. Everyone cheers as the lights are turned on.

Some Christians argue that the Christmas tree is a Pagan symbol of worship, and we should not put up a Christmas tree.

As we trace history, the Pagans are known to take Christian truths and distort them. Take a glimpse of the religions and customs of the pagan world, and you will find Bible truths that are re-packaged in lies and distortion. For example, Hindus believe this lie about their false god, Krishna: he was miraculously conceived by a virgin, his family had to travel to pay yearly tax, his birth was attended by angels, wise men and shepherds who brought gifts and so on. Does that story sound familiar?  Who is behind these distortions of truth? The devil is the father of lies. “for he is a liar, and the father of it.” John 8:44

Listen to what God said about trees. “The glory of Lebanon shall come unto thee, the fir tree, the pine tree, and the box together, to beautify the place of my sanctuary…” (Isaiah 60:13) God’s glory was revealed as the Creator of the evergreen trees and His house was made beautiful by them.

Where did the tradition of Christmas tree lights come from? In the 1500’s, Martin Luther, turned the world upside down by teaching the Bible truth that salvation is not earned by good deeds but received only as a free gift of God’s grace through faith in Jesus Christ as redeemer from sin. Martin Luther is also credited as being the first person to put candles on a Christmas tree to represent “Jesus is the light of the world.” Traditionally, many times the Christmas tree is topped with a star or an angel to symbolize the birth of our Saviour, Jesus Christ.

There are two other very important trees mentioned in the Bible. These two trees represent God’s redemptive plan.

  1. The first tree brought separation.
  2. The second tree brought reconciliation.

Can you guess what trees these are?

Once upon a time in the beautiful garden of Eden there lived the very first husband and wife. God gave Adam and Eve everything they needed and they had the freedom to take freely of the land, but God had one limitation; Adam and Eve were not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. “And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.”  (Genesis 2:16,17)

Satan meets Eve by that tree and asks the first question designed to cast doubt on God’s love, plan, care and grace, “hath God said?  By the way, Satan, to this day, uses this same method to put doubt in our minds as to the truth of God’s Word. God’s Word is true, no matter what circumstances are going on in our lives.

When something bad happens, have you ever had the thought, “God, don’t you care?” I asked that question when I was in my second trimester and experienced my seventh miscarriage. Guess who whispered that question to you and to me to cause us to doubt God and His Word? The father of lies, Satan. His plan is to create doubt, discourage, and depress. The truth is that God said in His Word that He loves you and me with an everlasting love. God tenderly cares for you and me with compassion and mercy.

“And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.” Genesis 3:6

Did you notice Adam was with Eve in verse 6?  You probably won’t miss it, because I put those words in bold. Adam was also not deceived according to 1 Timothy 2:14. He was with his wife, but did not protect or lead as the husband of his household. Husband means house-band. The husband is the band that keeps the household together. Notice, the division that occurred as Adam blames his wife and God for his sinful action. “The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat.” (Genesis 3:12)

When Eve looked at the forbidden fruit, she followed her feelings rather than the command of God. The devil will tempt wives to follow their emotions. Let us keep our feelings in control with the Truth of God’s Word. I desire to be Spirit-led, not emotionally-led. Because a wife has a huge influence on her husband’s decisions, she needs to ask the Lord for wisdom. I don’t want to influence the love of my life to make a poor decision for our family. So, I must spend time in the Word of God everyday. On the other hand, it is the wise husband who listens to the counsel of his Spirit-led wife.  God gives discernment to the wife when she seeks God’s will for her family.

Confession of Heavenbound Homemaker: There were many times I influenced my husband for good, but there was one time my emotion-led influence makes me shudder to think about what could have happened.  Let me just say that a suave debonaire young man who had read a book on “How to be a Gentleman” came for our daughter, and I was completely taken in by his charm. My husband knew the truth about the young man and thank the Lord, the young man is out of the picture. I pray this young man gets saved.

My advice to all wives out there: Because he is a man, our husband knows men better than we do, so we need to heed his counsel when the young men come to court our daughters. Our husband can do a better job of sizing the young men up. Daddy should prepare his daughter ahead of time to be on guard of the deceptive young man. A wife can size women up best. Mother should prepare her son ahead of time about the deceptive young woman. God warns about “her” in Proverbs. We are thankful to God for a godly daughter-in-law and godly sons-in-law for our three children! Blessed! Also, ladies, let us not be a matchmaker. We may be treading on dangerous ground. It is alright to introduce two people without having any ulterior motives; then allow God to do the rest.

Notice, Eve also blamed “another” for her sin. She blamed the devil for her actions. “The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat.” (Genesis 3:12) No, Eve, the devil did not make you do it.

Blaming someone else is a lame excuse for sinning. What are we blaming our sin on? Our past, someone else, our circumstances etc? What is our excuse for sinning? Do we realize pride is at the root of blaming others and making excuses for our sins? Have we taught our children that they are accountable for their sin before God and there is no excuse?

Adam and Eve both failed at that first tree, because Eve doubted God’s Word and Adam defied God’s Word. Sin and death entered into the world because of that first tree. First sin fascinates, then sin assassinates.

Because Adam and Eve sinned by eating of the forbidden tree, we are all born sinners. “Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned.” (Romans 5:12)

The good news is what God told the devil in Genesis 3:15; “And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.” This Scripture is our hope. This Scripture is about the 2nd tree; the tree of Calvary. Satan will first bruise Christ’s heel, his human nature. But, Christ will crush Satan’s head, Satan’s strategy. How? By dying for our sins on the tree at Calvary and by conquering the grave.  This is a Christmas verse as to why Jesus was born of a woman, the virgin Mary. The seed of the virgin woman is Jesus Christ who will deliver the death blow to Satan by conquering sin and death .

A woman was the instrument that brought sin into the world, but God used a woman to bring the Saviour into the world. Fast forward to Luke 2~ Once upon a time, there was a godly teenage virgin, named Mary.  What a lesson for young ladies to stay pure! God still wants to use the unmarried godly virgin girl to impact the world for Him. I know TV and movies depict it as “normal” to lose one’s virginity before marriage, but that is not God’s design.  Liberal minds and those who do not have morals write those Scripts. Making the choice to remain a virgin until marriage… what better wedding gift to give one’s spouse on the wedding night! Purity was my wedding gift to my husband and purity was his wedding gift to me. Our children and their spouses gave this wedding gift to one another. Purity is powerful!

Mary was gentle, and humble, so God chose her for a great honor. God uses the woman who is tender and submissive. God said, “Be ye holy for I am holy.” God will use the woman who has yielded all. Whether single or married, to find favor with God, a woman must be a clean vessel for His use.

The angel, Gabriel announced to the virgin Mary, “Fear not, Mary: for thou hast Mary ~ Gabrielfound favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS.” Luke 1:30,31

Notice, Scripture says about Mary, “thou are highly favored.” (Luke 1:28) Mary is not lifted above women, Mary lifted womanhood.

Just as we all, born sinners need a Saviour, Mary needed a Saviour too, as she said these words, “My Spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour.” Luke 1:47

Jesus Christ was coming to earth to die on a tree. He would make his arrival, born of a virgin, in a stable, wrapped in swaddling clothes and he would lay in a manger.  The question at Christmas is not that Jesus is born, but why was Jesus born?

We cannot get saved by the birth of Jesus. As Jesus grew up, He could not save in His healing power or by His incredible teaching. There was only one way Jesus could save us. “without shedding of blood is no remission (forgiveness).” (Hebrews 9:22)

Jesus, the innocent had to die for the guilty!  Jesus was born of a virgin. Had Jesus Christ been born like we were born, He would have been a son of Adam. Had He been the son of Adam, He would have been a sinner. Had He been a sinner, He could not have been innocent. What was His ultimate purpose for coming? Jesus Christ, the last Adam, came, born of a virgin, to undo what the first Adam did. Jesus Christ was born so that He could die! Jesus would hang on a tree, having become cursed for our sake, to bear the penalty of our sin. He would hang on a tree so that we could be freed from the curse of sin and have communion with God restored and spend all eternity with Him!

At age 33, Jesus was publicly brutally crucified. The pain of crucifixion on the tree is excruciating. Did you know the word, “excruciating” came from the Latin language and literally means, “out of the cross”. This cruel form of death created its own vocabulary word for pain; excruciating.

As He hung on the tree, Jesus ministered to the dying thief who ended up trusting Jesus to save him. Jesus showed honor to His mother and told John to take care of her.  Jesus spoke His final words, “It is finished” which means, Paid in full! (John 19:30)

The first tree was in Eden. It revealed the pride of man.

The second tree was on Calvary. It revealed the pardon of man.

The top of the cross pointed toward the heavens to point the way there. The arms on the cross outstretched “not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9)  God loves me this much with his arms outstretched on that tree! Thank You, Lord!

I am enjoying looking at my sparkly Christmas tree with wrapped presents underneath it. As I sit here, sipping on my coffee, Bible in hand, taking in my  surroundings, I am reminded that the Greatest Gift was not placed under the tree; the Greatest Gift was hung on a tree… for you and for me.

The million dollar question is: What are we to do about the Free Gift?
“But as many as received him (Jesus), to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe (trust) on his name.” John 1:12

Unwrap the free gift of salvation, by confessing to Jesus you have sinned and ask  Jesus to save you. Receive Him into your heart today! For more on “how to be 100% sure you are going to heaven”, visit the post on my website:

How to Be 100% Sure You’re Going To Heaven!

You are cherished with an everlasting love! That truth makes me smile with joy.

Thank you so much! Merry CHRISTmas to all!

*Many statements in this post are from a sermon, by Pastor Stephen Davey

Jump into Your Husband’s Holiday World

A long time ago, I watched a Jimmy Stewart movie about a young man who wanted to marry Jimmy Stewart’s daughter. Jimmy Stewart asked why the young man wanted to marry his daughter and the young man replied, “Because I love her.”

Jimmy Stewart asked the young man if he liked her. At first, the young man was taken back by the question. Finally the young man understood and said that he liked Jimmy Stewart’s daughter. After Jimmy Stewart made sure the young man liked his daughter, he gave him permission to marry his daughter.

I can’t remember anything else about that Jimmy Stewart movie.  I cannot even remember the title of the movie.  That one scene only stuck in my mind.  I thought he was a wise Dad to ask that certain question of the young man.  Liking the person you marry is important. I think asking the daughter that same question is important too.

Ladies, we love our husbands, but do we show them we like them and enjoy spending time with them by doing what they like to do?  Does our husband know that he is priority? Do we set aside what we want to do and jump into his world? Or, do we expect him to jump into our world and go along with what we like to do? I admit it! I sometimes have a plan and then I expect him to jump into my world! I do!

We need to make “time” with our husband a high priority during the holiday season (and all seasons for that matter). Finding out what our husband likes is saying to him, “You are important to me.”

How many of your husbands can’t wait to put up the Christmas tree and decorate it? Some?  But not most. Instead of singing to him, “Mr. Grinch” or making “Ba hum bug” jokes when he does not want to take part, it is good to find out what he likes to do. He may not like decorating the tree. Let us not insist he help. If he likes to watch you and the children decorate the tree, then fix him his favorite snack where he can have a front row seat watching his family decorate the tree. He may want to invest in an artificial lit tree to make things simpler. Have you asked him his preference?

What does your husband dread at Christmas?  Find out, and make plans to drop what he dreads or work it out, so it is pleasant for him.

Have we asked our husband what he likes to do at Christmas and on New Years? I just asked my husband for the first time this year.  Yes, I am ashamed to say.  It was the first time. I found out he does like helping to decorate the Christmas tree! Yay!!! I always thought so!!

My husband enjoys buying a fresh Christmas tree too.  Every year, he enjoys picking out the most perfectly shaped tree on the lot. I think fresh trees make the house smell like Christmas, whatever that means. My husband wants me to string the lights on the tree, which I do.  He does not like doing that part.  After that, we all enjoy decorating the tree together hanging the ornaments. Background Christmas music is playing and egg nog is being served. I buy a special ornament for our marriage almost every year and one for each of our children.  I ended up giving our children their ornaments after they got married. 🙁 I loved their little special ornaments, and it was hard to part with them.

My husband likes for me and the children to unwrap the pieces of the nativity scene and put it in a prominent place in the home. He likes being a spectator. Barry then enjoys reading the Christmas story from Luke 2 about that first Christmas. He reads by candlelight. “And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.” Luke 2:12

I asked my husband, “What are your favorite things to do at Christmas?  He gave me his two top answers:

1. Spending time getting together with family.

2. Eating good food.

He is such a family man! I am blessed!

Why am I not surprised at his second favorite thing! Yes, food is the way to a man’s heart. My next question should be, “What would you like for me to cook?”  Yes, that should be my next question, and I should happily cook his favorite Christmas and New Years dishes. Yes, I should! The other day Barry said he wanted shrimp for Christmas! I quickly responded, “Shrimp, that is weird for Christmas!” Alright, that was what I was not supposed to say.  I later told him if he wants shrimp, I will gladly make him shrimp. Shrimp is a good idea to me now. 🙂

Speaking of food, what fruit are you and I feeding our husband this holiday season?

“the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering (patience), gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance (self-control).”  Galatians 5:22,23

We should not be feeding our husband the rotten fruit of a critical spirit, dismay, impatience, unkindness, anger, rudeness, gossip and so on.  Love is not a mood or emotion. It is a command. I have the job as a wife to encourage my husband. He needs me. I desire to have a radical love for my husband. I do this by laying down my wants. I complete him by doing him good everyday. “She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.” Proverbs 31:12

We married our husband because we love him. Now, we love our husband because we married him.  Where is our husband on the Christmas list?  Is he even on the Christmas list? Remind him he is priority by jumping into his world. Enjoy him and learn to enjoy doing what he likes to do.

How many of your husbands like to watch football? Mine does! I am not a sports fan. Even if you are not a sports fan, jump in with a positive attitude to enjoy a football game with him. Again, make his favorite finger food.  My husband and I have a fun tradition of kissing when his favorite team makes a touchdown.  Kissing is better than high fiving any day! Yes, watching sports with hubby can be fun after all.

We sold what I termed an “Archie Bunker chair” and opted for a love seat, so we could sit next to one another.  Sitting next to Barry, enjoying his favorite team has become pleasurable to me now. I am learning to like his world. When my husband is happy, I am happy.

Spending time with extended family is what my husband enjoys too.  We have the neatest extended families.  On his side, his mother is an excellent cook. When we were first married, I was so frustrated and said, “I will never cook as good as your mom!” Well, I decided to solve that problem. I spent a week with Barry’s mother and had cooking lessons. His mom does not measure the ingredients…she just tosses them in, but I learned just the same. At Christmas, his mother also wraps many presents for us to open.  We all laugh when we each unwrap a box of cereal.  His mother even remembers all our favorite cereal brands.  I asked my son what he thought his children wanted from us for Christmas, and he said, “I liked unwrapping cereal at Mamaw’s house. They will like that too.” So funny! This Grandma and Papa will pass on the wrapped cereal tradition. Fun Memories.

On my side, we have a huge family who homeschooled.  Two of my sisters have seven children and my other sister has five children. We all invested in music lessons for our children. Before the big day, my daughters made a program after talking to each cousin about what they were going to do for the family music fest.

On the day, my Dad led the Christmas music and announced which grandchild would be next. We ended by singing Christmas carols together. What special memories of a special family time!!!! The photo is of my parents and three sisters. This was the last Christmas our mother enjoyed with us before she went to be with the Lord this past May of 2012. Mom is celebrating in heaven with my brother and sister. I pray for all those readers who are missing loved ones this Christmas to be comforted, and may you know the Lord’s tender compassion for you. “Jesus wept.” John 11:35

This Christmas Holiday, let us show our husband that he is tops on our list by putting his wants ahead of our own. A happy husband makes for a happy wife and a happy holiday season.

By the way, holiday means Holy Day.  Who is the Holy One? Jesus Christ. And when they write Xmas? X is Greek for Christ! They can try, but they can never take Christ out of Christmas.

My all time favorite Christmas Scripture:

“For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Isaiah 9:6

Do you have any other suggestions for Jumping Into Hubby’s World this Christmas and New Years?  How do you work this out for your family?

Men are from Mars, Women are from Heaven… oops, Is that right? :)

I have never read that popular book, but I have heard it is very good.  Let me tell you of one of the many times I felt like my husband was from Mars, and I am sure, he felt like I was from Venus.

For our “Anniversary Get-away”, Barry was very sweet and told me to plan it.  Well, I planned our special trip to an amusement park we had never been to before.  Why? We had wonderful memories of family vacations to amusement parks.  I even thought it thrilling to ride the roller coasters, but not as much as Barry.  I thought we both would have the time of our lives together.

The day arrived for our “happy getaway”. This particular amusement park was known for its beautiful landscape with wild animals roaming the land,  plus its many roller coasters. Unknown to the other, we each had our own private expectations.

My husband’s expectation:  “This amusement park is known for its roller coasters, so Linda and I will run as fast as we can from roller coaster to roller coaster all day long. Of course, we will hold hands as we run.”

My expectation:  “Barry and I will hold hands and stroll through the lush terrain and view all the exotic animals together taking in a roller coaster every once in a while along the way.”

What actually happened? I will leave the gory details of this get-away to your imagination 🙂

Let’s put it this way:  I should have never planned a get-away to an amusement park if I was thinking “Romantic”.

I am still trying to learn the following lessons:

1.  Good Communication is key.

2.  Private Expectations are killers.

3.  Learn to Laugh at life a little more.

4.  Next time my husband says, “Why don’t you plan a get-away for the two of us”, I will remember, “I never want to see another roller coaster again”! 🙂