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Monthly Archives: March 2015

Developing a Healthy Marriage_ pt. 3

 

Bride and groom kissing.6. The Physical Connection

Genesis 2:21-25 And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; 22 And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man. 23 And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man. 24 Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh. 25 And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.

God made man, and then made woman from the same flesh as man. The physical connection between man and woman is natural, appropriate and expected. God made us to fellowship with him, so it’s natural for us to desire a connection with others. The physical connection between husband and wife is a blessing by God, only to be enjoyed within the boundaries of marriage. In our corrupt society man and women have taken liberties that God never intended; liberties that instead of strengthening the physical connection will actually destroy it. Many relationships have been destroyed by an “old flame” of the past coming back to haunt the new relationship. Thoughts and images are never really erased from our mind and they often cause arguments and trust issues in new relationships. People who jump from one relationship to another are never satisfied and are often hurting emotionally inside. The bottom line is God has intended one man for one woman for life, and that man and woman were designed to connect physically. There are different ideas and aspects of the physical connection; I will briefly look at two:

A. The Quality Time Connection

Ephesians 5:16 Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

Time is one of the most precious blessings you presently have. The only time you are guaranteed is the time you are currently experiencing. Spending physical time with your spouse is important. Long distance phone calls, texts and video chats are fine to sustain short term separations, but they can never replace personal contact. Some people, especially military are forced to be away for long periods of time, (and I am grateful for their sacrifice and pray for their safety) but many couples live separated and have little contact, and they see each other every day. This is not healthy for the relationship. We live in an evil day with many devices and distractions, we must invest all the time we can into our marriages. While the evil in our day seeks to destroy your relationship, you should use time wisely to strengthen it.

The verse says “redeeming the time,” which means to buy it up or to rescue it from loss; we must use each hour wisely because when the minuets are gone they are gone forever. I was recently talking with my wife on this subject and we came up with three areas of time we needed to be aware of: neutral time, negative time and nutritious time. Neutral time is time wasted or time spent idle. This would include television watching, sitting on the couch looking at your mobile device, social media & web surfing, personal hobbies & recreation…just to name a few. Please don’t misunderstand me, not all of this time is bad, but it is not all good either, that is why it’s called neutral time. This neutral time could very easily be converted into nutritious time if you are using social media to encourage others or lift up the name of Christ; on the other hand it could be turned into negative time if you are gossiping and running down others. Negative time is time you spend engaging in sinful activities; arguing and shouting at one another, talking about people and spreading gossip, looking at sinful material and listening to ungodly music, selfishly using all your spare time for you and your hobbies while robbing your family of time with them…are just a few. Nutritional time is time which builds and encourages each other. This is the best time to invest in because it builds protective walls around your marriage & family, and gives much needed strength to your home. This is the time your family will remember and appreciate most for years to come. A few examples of this time would be: family bible time at home, church attendance together, serving Christ together, “couch time” talks, writing little notes to each other, making time for dates, encouraging words to family members…the list is endless and the results are wonderful.

B. The Intimate Time Connection

Gen. 2:24 says that the man would “…cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.” God intended for the man and his bride to enjoy the blessings of sexual intimacy as a way of becoming one with each other. The word “cleave” means to adhere, cling or stick to someone or something. It literally means to be joined together. One of the reasons sexual relations are so sacred and reserved for married couples only is because of what happens in this act. Sexual intercourse is an act which God designed to unite a man and woman together forever, making them one flesh. No other act makes two individuals one flesh. This act is not to be taken lightly or given freely outside of the marriage vows. Sexual relations within the marriage forms a bond, a unity and a closeness that cannot be matched or mimicked anywhere else in society; therefore, it is to be cherished, respected and private between a husband and wife. When this act is enjoyed within the marriage, the result is joy and contentment between husband and wife.

This privilege is not to be abused outside of marriage, but it should also not be abused within the marriage either. It should not become a bargaining chip or tool you use to control and manipulate your spouse. The bible is clear about this in 1 Corinthians 7:3-5 “Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband. 4 The wife hath not power of her own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath not power of his own body, but the wife. 5 Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency.” The wife is to give herself freely to her own husband, and likewise the husband is to give his body freely unto his own wife. When couples withhold physical contact from each other, it makes it easier for Satan to tempt them and draw them into sin and adultery. This is why God allows us to have our own spouse, so we can meet each other’s needs and grow as one in Christ together. God wants us to honor him as we enjoy our marriage.

These biblical principals will help you safeguard your marriage. Here are a few helpful hints to put into practice as well that will strengthen your home and your relationship: loving embraces, holding hands while talking, revisit an old spot that was special to you before marriage, writing encouraging notes (we use Post-it notes and place them all over the house), words that compliment, unexpected flowers, prepare a favorite meal & make it special…. These are just a few, but use your imagination and pray for God to help you encourage your spouse and meet their individual needs. Your home will be happier if you do.

(look for part 4 coming soon)

 

 

The Good News

j04359122 Timothy 1:10 “… our Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel:”

What an amazing verse! Jesus Christ “abolished death” when he was crucified for our sins, placed in the tomb and rose again the third day. Because Christ beat death, those who trust him as Savior also have defeated death. We will all certainly die one day physically, but a child of God will NEVER die spiritually. Through Christ we have the hope and promise of immortality; eternal life is the result of Jesus Christ living in you. His eternal life becomes your eternal life. FOREVER!

The verse also says that Jesus “brought life” to us. Before a person accepts Christ as their savior, that person is actually a living dead man. He may be alive physically, but he is absolutely dead spiritually. Sin brings death, and because all mankind is born into sin, all mankind is doomed by that sin. It is a very dismal and despairing thought, but without Christ there is no hope of eternal life; only eternal death in a horrible place called Hell. GOOD NEWS, when Christ comes into your life he brings life! Because of Jesus you are brought to life spiritually. You are still part physical which one day will die, but you are also a new creature in Christ spiritually and will never die but live forever in a place called heaven. Life comes to not only your spirit, but also your mind and conscience. In Christ you think differently and see things through new spiritual eyes. You understand more fully as the Holy Spirit of God guides and directs you day by day. Life is in Jesus, and that life is GOOD!

Last, verse tells us that all of this good news is brought “to light through the gospel.” Which means a person would never know about this wonderful new life without the message of the gospel. The word gospel literally means good news. The message of Jesus, forgiveness and eternal life is the good news that people need to hear. You will not see this gospel message reported on the nightly news, it will not make national headlines and sadly these days you won’t even hear it mentioned many churches. If you are a believer in Jesus Christ, it is our life’s mission to spread this good news. We should and must tell everyone we can that Jesus is the answer for the sin problem, and that he can forgive and bring eternal life to all who call upon him. If you have never trusted Christ as your personal savior, this message is for you to receive. Simply acknowledge you’re a sinner and ask Jesus to forgive you and give you eternal life. Trust him today as YOUR savior; yes he died for the entire world…but he died for YOU too! He loves you and wants to bless you. Please friend, trust him today.

 

 

 

“I go a fishing…”

fishing boatJohn 21:3 Simon Peter saith unto them, I go a fishing. They say unto him, We also go with thee. They went forth, and entered into a ship immediately; and that night they caught nothing.”

What’s so bad about going fishing you ask? Nothing is wrong with fishing as long as you’re not putting it before the Lord’s work. In the previous chapter, Jesus tells his disciples to get busy preaching the gospel; instead, Peter is found 8 days later going fishing. Not only did he disobey, but he influenced 6 other men to disobey also.

As Christians we have a great work to do. Christ left us on earth not to occupy space or accumulate goods, but to spread his message of forgiveness and hope. There is a generation present in the world today that knows not our God. They have no clue about Christ and his love for them, nor do they care. They think not at all about sin, hell, judgment and the coming wrath of a holy God if they do not repent of their sins. They only mention God in curse words, or when they hit bottom and need a leg up. This problem is not just in the unregenerate men of the world, but also within the church walls. Many Christians today are blinded by the watered down gospel sermonettes, the popular health and wealth prosperity preaching; the all smiles tickle your ear with cotton candy motivational speeches, or the ever growing modern worldly church with their rock and roll worship tunes and their laid back, casual philosophies to approaching God. These are just to name a few, but in every case the modern church with its modern Christians is lacking much of what the early church possessed. We have busied ourselves to the point of comfort and conformity and the result is a powerless, carnal Christian generation. A generation that has a very tainted view of the holiness of God at best! A Generation that is misled and misdirected because they have not a strong prayer connection with God, nor a knowledge of the Holy. John 21:3 says they went fishing “and that night they caught nothing.” Our disobedience not only affects us, it affects others also. Notice how many fish they caught…none! It is very unprofitable, as well as a big waste of time to disobey God and walk in our own way. No wander we have very little joy and prosperity; if we disobey God then His blessing is far from us.

So who will preach the cross of Jesus Christ today? Who will count the cost and pay what is necessary to see people saved, lives changed and real power restored to the Church of Jesus Christ? We must stop praying for leaders and stand up ourselves and lead. God will empower any Christian to serve Him. God has already purposed and chosen us to good works even before the foundation of the earth. We don’t need to pray about doing the right thing! It is not a question of “should I serve” but rather “will you serve?” In verse six after obeying the command of Christ they caught an enormous amount of fishes. God blessed them for obeying his word. Later in the chapter he told Simon Peter to feed his sheep, he told him to get busy serving and doing what he had already told him to do! Will you be faithful where God has put you? Drop the fishing rod of the world and pick up the Sword of the Spirit of God! Start seeking God’s direction, pray for strength and guidance and begin now doing what God has shown you is right. Many are counting on you. You can make a difference with the power and help of Christ on your life. Someone is ALWAYS watching you….be a good example. Move FORWARD in your leadership.

 

 
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Posted by on March 20, 2015 in Leadership Helps

 
 
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