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Archive for the ‘Marriage’ Category

For Married Men

In Marriage on Sunday, February 28, 2010 at 8:13 pm

Saturday, Dirk and I had the opportunity to share during three breakout sessions during a marriage seminar.  This is the hand-out Dirk compiled for the men.  Have any more thoughts or suggestions to add?  Wives, your input is encouraged too!

For the Men

LOVE your wife…with actions and words.  Ex:  open her car door, praying, reading your Bible, tithe, help put the children to bed.

Be the head…not the tail! (or the butt) Spiritually lead her!

Tell her she’s beautiful.

Listen better….turn off the TV or gaming system.

Write love notes

Bring small gifts…it really is the thought that counts!

Give her longer kisses…not just the peck on your way out the door.

Leave work at work.

Continue to pursue her…even though you’ve already caught her.

Hold her hand.

E-mail and text her

Take her on surprise dates

Take care of the cars

Finish those home repair projects (or hire someone to finish them)

Read your Bible and pray out loud for your family

Give her lots of cuddle time

Be her best friend

Tell her you love her often….and tell her why.

Share your dreams with her:  Family Vision

Ways to Fight Fair

In Marriage on Monday, February 22, 2010 at 8:27 am

Dirk and I have been invited to participate in a break-out session as part of a marriage conference next weekend.  The subject we were requested to share about:

COMMUNICATION

I’ll be sharing some thoughts this week from our preparation.

Our relational discussions really don’t have to end up in a blow-out fight if we have some guidelines and boundaries in place.  Then we can be in control of the argument, rather than the argument controlling us.

Here is a hand-out we are working on.

ALWAYS

Believe your mate has your best interest at heart

Listen. Ask yourself, “Is there any truth to this?”

See the discussion as an opportunity for understanding rather than for winning.

Remove sarcasm, cynicism, and anger from your words and tone.

Stay on topic.

See the issue as “our” issue, not “his” or “her” issue

Keep the discussion only between you and your mate

Take responsibility for yourself and your actions

Recognize your limits. If things are heating up, agree to a time-out.

Finish the discussion. Don’t leave it open-ended.

Forgive

NEVER

See your mate as the adversary

Belittle, insult, call names or use abusive language

Label or compare (“You are so ________” or You are just like your _________”)

Try to have the last word

Shut down and use the silent treatment

Put up defenses and retaliate verbally

Tear down the other’s character and personality. Keep it about behavior.

Use the D word (divorce)

Threaten, yell, scream, slam doors or throw, hit or break things

Walk away or leave the house (except for an agreed upon time-out)

Bring up the past or former unresolved discussions

Blame or make accusations

Generalize – “You always”, “You never”, “Can’t you just…?”, “You are so…”

Make assumptions about what you think your mate is saying. Ask direct questions.

——————————————————

What do you think?  Any additions or suggestions?

Can these guidelines help to control the argument rather than it controlling us?

The Riddle – Answer Revealed!

In Marriage on Tuesday, February 2, 2010 at 12:38 pm

Belinda (a long time friend of ours)  guessed right!  The answer to “The Riddle” is simply (drumroll, please)………opening my car door for me.  Always!

Here’s the funny thing.  Dirk never guessed what the answer was until late last night!  He guessed everything from his singing, patting me on the rear, (seriously?  That attests to his character?)  to telling me he loves me.

My girls (most of them) knew right away.  But, my sons had a harder time guessing. 

Which confirmed my original thought:

A lot of men don’t realize that it’s the little things that mean the most to us women.  And often, we forget to tell you.   

Sure, receiving gifts and flowers is always really nice gesture from our husbands.  But nothing replaces the everyday things.  Like when Dirk always puts himself between me and the traffic if we are walking near a street.  Or when he empties the dishwasher, or makes the bed.  Or makes sure there’s gas in my car.   

I’m just saying, the best gifts most husbands can give their wives are FREE! 

Do you wives agree?  What are some of the “free” gifts your husbands give to you?

A Riddle

In Marriage on Sunday, January 31, 2010 at 9:43 pm

A little riddle for you today. If you really know us, you know the answer for sure. Let’s have a little fun and see if we get any guesses. If you do know, just say “I know!”

He’s done it ever since I first knew him, yet it’s never been an annoyance to me.
I’ve never tired of it, even once.
It still makes me smile, if not outwardly, deeply inside.
Yet, I never expect it.
It doesn’t matter if it’s day or night, sunny or pouring.
I never wonder if he’ll forget…he doesn’t.
It’s such a part of who he is. And this action spoke volumes to me of his character, even when we were just teens.
Though it’s nothing deeply spiritual, this one gesture makes me feel so loved and cared for. And proud to be his wife.

Have any guesses?

Dearest Husband

In Marriage on Monday, January 25, 2010 at 8:59 am

 

Anna also wrote letters to her future husband.  Since she loves to write, I wasn’t surprised  that she had written several letters over the years.  She recently shared a book of letters with me.  The first one she saved is from 2003.  She was 15.  Several  more were written in her book through 2005. 

The first thing I noted was the heading.  Anna wrote her letters to “Dearest Husband”.  Being the passionate, romantic she was (and is, still), her many letters were full of hopes of the future, the things she was currently learning and even books she was reading. 

Excerpts:

2003 “It’s hard to write you and not get excited about someday meeting you face to face.  I know someday you’ll read these letters and I just pray that God is preparing you just as He is preparing me. “

2004″….I just have to be careful I’m not getting too anxious for you, but remember to just pray for your safety and purity…”

2005. “In Proverbs 31:12 it says that the wife brings good, not harm all the days of her life.  This means that even before I meet you, I should be honoring you with my emotions and most definately my thougths.  I’m  also learing about the sacrifices and unconditional love of Jesus, and how someday I will be able to pour that love out into our marriage. I pray for you, love.  I  pray patience and strength for your fierce heart.”

God already knew. 

While Anna was dreaming and writing to her Dearest Husband, he (Cody Light),  was entering the Marine Corps in 2003.  In 2004, when she often mentioned praying for his safety, he was in Iraq.  He was there until May, 2005, while she was praying for his patience and strength. 

He came back to Oklahoma City in December, 2008 and visited Lifechurch, Northwest Campus, where Anna is on staff. 

2005 “How I think of the day we will meet.  Will I know it is you?  Have I already met you, even now as I write you this letter?

No. She didn’t know.   In fact, she called him Caleb for several weeks!

Anna and Cody were married on August, 7, 2009. 

Isaiah 64:4  For since the world began,
      no ear has heard,
   and no eye has seen a God like you,
      who works for those who wait for him!

Did you write letters to your husband-t0-be?  Share your story.

Dear Future Husband (Part 2)

In Family, Homeschooling, Marriage, Parenting on Thursday, January 14, 2010 at 6:51 pm

Letter from our youngest daughter, Katie….quite the prophetess!

Written by Katie Meadows Mansour, April 29, 2002.  13 years old

Hey future husband!

I’m writing you because, well, because I’m so excited about getting married and I can hardly wait to start a life and family of my own with you.  I know you must know that God has to be the cornerstone of our marriage, because if you didn’t I wouldn’t have allowed myself to marry you.  What I mean by that is God has to be in everything that we do—decisions, goals, most importantly our relationship.

Right now I am 13, almost 14.  My wishes/fantasies are to get married in about six years on July 12 (my Grandpa, Grandma and Mom and Dad’s weddings were on July 12).  That is two days before my 20th bd.  I will almost be done with college, getting registered for nursing.  I really want to just be a mom, but until we are set financially, my career will be nursing……(she goes on to tell the number of children, boys and girls, complete with names and name meanings)

….I know my wishes and fantasies will change and I’m glad because I want you to have every part and every say that you desire.  I know God has set you apart for me and I can’t wait to meet you!

Your future wife,

Katie Sara Meadows

Eph. 5:22-24

Eph 5:33

——————————

Katie met Alexander when she was still young, 15, and actually did marry him on July 12, 2007, in the very same church as her parents’ and grandparents’ wedding, even though it was a Thursday evening wedding!  She was two days shy of turning 19.

This May she graduates from University of Central Oklahoma with her degree in nursing.

Finding this letter blessed me so much.  The thoughts and desires expressed on paper set a direction for Katie and she stayed with it. It’s hard for me to believe anything other than that the Hand of God was directing her hand, as well as her heart. Alexander’s desires match Katie’s desires, and God is the cornerstone of their marriage.

My hope and prayer for you is that you will be encouraged that God has a plan for you, and for your children. Keep pouring His truths into them. Someday, when you see them grow up and live it out…..well, that’s just an overwhelming blessing!!

Next, I’ll share some of Anna’s thoughts and dreams from her letters to her future husband.

~Robin

Dear Future Husband (Part One)

In Homeschooling, Marriage on Monday, January 11, 2010 at 9:57 pm

I’ve been cleaning out some old stuff and discovered a small gold mine of Katie and Anna’s old spiral notebooks. The notebooks we used for their schoolwork.

One of the prized writings I found was a letter Katie wrote to her future husband…..when she was only 13 years old!

I remember giving Anna and Katie the assignment. I don’t remember if I offered any suggestions as to content, but I do know the things they wrote must have helped in giving them direction for the qualities and character they were looking for in a young man. They chose well!

Anna recently shared with me that she saved the letters written to her future husband and presented them in a book to her to-be husband, Cody Light, the week they were to be married, August 7, 2009. Wow! Wish I had done something like that!

So, if you’re single, consider doing something similar for your future husband. And really, I guess it’s never too late to start writing letters to our husbands. Think I’ll give it a start!

I’ll post Katie’s letter to her future husband next blog. She’s quite the prophetess. Come back and see what her 13 yo heart knew even before she married Alexander. Maybe Anna will share some of hers as well.

~Robin

An Aisle, an Altar, and a Hymn

In Marriage on Monday, April 6, 2009 at 9:30 pm

It’s wedding time.  Here you are, in all your glorious beauty, ready to walk down the aisle to your knight…the man who chose you, the man of your dreams.

You walk down the aisle, meet your man at the altar, and then everyone sings a hymn.

And that man of your dreams…..he’s just perfect!  Well, he’s ALMOST perfect.  Except for the back hair, and those goofy jokes, and those silly looking jeans he loves, his sometimes gruff manner, and his lack of Bible reading,  and the_________, and the___________. 

And it begins.  The aisle, altar and hymn, turn into….. “I’ll alter him”!  And we work and work at it, sometimes for years!

We have an image in our minds of what we want our husbands to be like…that perfect man that looks and thinks like we think he should look and think. 

Those preconceived ideas can make it really hard on our man.  After all, he’s not really supposed to be made in OUR image, nor does he want to be.  (Do we really want him to be like us??)

He was created in God’s image, yet still incomplete. God made him to be a man and he is still human. 

Maybe we should start adapting to him and loving him the way he is….not as we want him to be.  And the changes?  I’ve found that God does a lot better job than I do! 

May all my veiled “suggestions” and “encouragements” be silenced into quiet, uplifting prayers for my knight, the man who chose me, the man of  my dreams.

mom4

 

Robin

A Check-Up for Wives

In Marriage on Sunday, April 5, 2009 at 7:04 pm

*Does my husband see me smile more often than not?

*Is my home a happy home?

*Am I someone even I would want to come home to?

*Do I enjoy life?  Do I know how to have fun or am I often too intense or dramatic?

*Am I husband-focused, or am I kid-focused, object-focused or even me-focused?

*Am I positive and encouraging?

*Do I allow him to dream without pointing out all the reasons why “that won’t work”?

*Do I allow the Holy Spirit to be his conscience?

*What do my children hear from my mouth concerning my husband?

*Am I still someone, today, that my husband would pursue and fall in love with?

*Am I really a submissive wife who shows respect to her husband?

*Do I often show my disapproval of my husband’s actions by giving the “silent treatment”?

*Do I pray for my husband?

After almost 35 years of marriage, these are questions I still need to ask myself.  A check-up is good to keep our marriages healthy.  Still working on it here!

mom4

 

 

Robin

The Best is Yet to Come

In Marriage on Sunday, March 22, 2009 at 9:12 pm

My husband recently said one of the nicest things he’s ever said to me…and this from a man who frequently says some pretty nice things. 

“I think the best years of our marriage are yet to come”.

 

Wow!  This is after 35….count them….35 years (this July) of  what has been an already great marriage. 

 

And yet, we know so many instances where friends and acquaintances have ended their marriage relationship about the time their kids are leaving home.  

Why does this happen?  Why after all those years of staying together?

 

We discussed these very questions after he said those endearing words. 

 

We decided it is because married couples lose their focus along the way.  Rather than being focused on each other they are focused on:

Kids

Jobs

Service outside the home

Hobbies and other interests

Outside activities

Other relationships

 

(This is, of course, besides your relationship to Christ.   And that is for another discussion).

 

It takes work, hard work,  to keep your focus on each other.  The world will offer many opportunities to get us off-track, to take our interests away from each other. 

I’m really not asking for your personal answers, but I want to leave you with a couple of questions to ask yourself: 

Is your focus on your mate?  Really on your mate?  What are you doing today that will ensure many tomorrows and “’til death do us part?”

mom4

 

 

Robin