Restoring the Joy In Marriage

Restoring the Joy In Marriage

Have you ever heard the saying that “marriages are made in heaven?” Sounds wonderful and who doesn’t want that, except that those marriages that are made in heaven, have to be lived out here on the earth. Here lies the challenge.

We are all, by human nature, selfish people. After working with people for over four decades, I can confidently say that selfishness is the number one reason relationships suffer and fail. Let’s be honest - we all want what we want when we want it. We may be able to get by with that behavior when we are two years old, but it is not very attractive as an adult and certainly not productive in a marriage. Selfishness destroys the joy in marriage.

Anything left to itself unattended and neglected will, at some point, need restoration.

Marriage, in its original state, is beautiful, but over a period of time, things can get weathered and begin to deteriorate. When we fail to tend to our marriages, along with the challenges of everyday life, our marriages get worn out, tired and need to be restored. Silence has replaced laughter and the thrill is gone.

Get Up and Get Going

Get Up and Get Going

There is a word in my heart for you as we step into 2019. It's the word... ARISE.

The word arise simply means to get up and get going.

This may be the answer you have been looking for. Sometimes we make overcoming our difficulties a bigger problem than it needs to be.

You might be asking God...

  • “What do I do now?”

  • “How can I survive this?"

  • "How can I afford to do that?”

God’s answer to you may well be what it was to many other people in the Bible who experienced difficulties and overwhelming despair and disappointment with life.

The Power of Hope

The Power of Hope

In the midst of all the craziness, if you were to ask me to use one word that would best describe the overall frame of mind of the people I come in contact with, it would be hopelessness.

Just recently three people told me how they have been fighting hopelessness in their lives. Two because of ongoing health challenges and one with ongoing family challenge. Hopelessness is very real, especially during the end of the year.

What is real hope?

Whatever Happened To Sundays?

Whatever Happened To Sundays?

There seems to be a never-ending challenge for people today – trying to find a rhythm to their lives. The greatest enemy we have today is busyness. This enemy wraps itself in good intentions and necessary obligations and works its way into the lives of people. Before they know it, days, weeks, months and years have passed without giving the necessary time to the most important relationships in their lives. Sound familiar?

My husband recently taught an outstanding message entitled “First Things First.” This teaching really captured my heart and caused me to take personal inventory of my life and priorities. I made some adjustments and I continue to contend to keep “first things first” in all areas of my life.

How to Hear the Voice of God

How to Hear the Voice of God

Everyone struggles, at some point in life, with their confidence in hearing the voice of God and discerning His direction for their lives.  

  • “Is that God really talking to me?”

  • “Do I take that job or this job?”

  • “Is he/she the one for me?”

  • “Do I stay or do I go?”

  • “Do I buy this house or that house?”

Over the years, I have observed that there are, broadly speaking, two distinct schools of thinking among believers with regard to divine guidance and the discovery of God’s will for our lives.

School #1 - By far the largest, is summed up by the mentality that says: “I don’t move without God’s guidance.”

School #2 - The complete opposite, says: “I don’t expect God’s guidance until I move.”

What I Know Now After 42 Years of Marriage

What I Know Now After 42 Years of Marriage

Last week I gave you my perspective on “What I wish I Knew Before I Got Married.” If you haven’t read that, take a moment to go back and read it - especially if you are single.

A few weeks ago, Jonathan and I celebrated our 42nd wedding anniversary so I thought I would give you my thoughts on a few things I now know after 42 years of marriage.

What I Wish I Knew Before I Got Married

What I Wish I Knew Before I Got Married

This month, Jonathan and I celebrated 42 years of marriage. What an adventurous journey this has been. There have been a lot of ups and downs, great times, and tough times, but the faithfulness of God, His Word and our love for each other have been the glue that has held us together. I wouldn’t want to be adventuring with anyone else but my first and only love.

I met Jonathan when I was 16 on a missions trip to Mexico. That is a story in itself that I will save for another time. As much as I loved him, being in love is not enough to build a good foundation for marriage. Being in love and being prepared is the best way to start.

Preparation helps you navigate the pressures of life and there are a lot of pressures in marriage and in ministry.

In our circles, over 40 years ago, no one was talking about preparing for marriage…

Choose Bitter or Better; It's Up To You

Choose Bitter or Better; It's Up To You

When I was young in marriage and in ministry, over forty years ago, my father gave me the greatest advice I have ever received.

It was during a time of great turmoil and upheaval and I felt betrayed and forgotten. In great distress, I unloaded all my pain to my father. He never interrupted me. He just looked at me and listened. When I finally finished, he said to me…

Fight For Your Family

Fight For Your Family

It is obvious that the attack of the enemy in the 21st century is on the home. The values that we cherish and the godly principles that we have dedicated ourselves to are worth fighting for.

If we want to win our families to God, it all starts by standing up and fighting for them! Drawing the line in the sand saying, “No more devil! Enough is enough!”

Think about this for a moment.

  • Do you want to be right or reconciled?

  • Do you want to continue being hurt or do you want to be healed?

  • Do you want to keep being the victim or start becoming whole?

If you’ll fight for your family God will fight for you.
If you’ll fight for your freedom God will fight for you. 

Below is a passionate message that I recently shared with our congregation on this subject.

Verna and I are standing together with you for your freedom and for victory for your family. 



For the waywardness of the simple will kill them, and the complacency of fools will destroy them. Proverbs 1:32 (NIV)

Indifference is a huge destructive influence in people’s lives.

The word indifference is defined: that which is looked upon as not mattering one way or another, that which is regarded as being of no significant importance or value.

Because of indifference, so many people don't live life to the fullest. Many never learn to care deeply about anything worthwhile.

And worse of all, God opportunities are missed and never realized.

Let me give you three symptoms of indifference.

1. Satisfaction with things the way they are - marriage, family, career, relationship with God and others; satisfied with living in the comfort zone you created and the status quo.

2. A rejection of things as they could be - Your mindset might be, “I don't like what I have but I really have little hope that it will ever change.” Or, “I just know it's going to require too much work on my part so—forget it.”

3.  Apathy which means a near total lack of interest and concern about something.
Apathy drains your passions, depletes your excitement and dulls your concern.

I pray not one of these three symptoms describes you.