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Posts from the ‘Marriage’ Category

IT IS TIME TO PREPARE YOURSELF FOR THE BATTLES AHEAD

Armour

 IT IS TIME TO PREPARE YOURSELF FOR THE BATTLES AHEAD

So how are you to prepare for the great battle that lies ahead?  Listen how the Bible teaches us to prepare ourselves, “Therefore put on God‘s complete armor, that you may be able to resist and stand your ground on the evil day [of danger], and, having done all [the crisis demands], to stand [firmly in your place].”   Stand therefore [hold your ground], having tightened the belt of truth around your loins and having put on the breastplate of integrity and of moral rectitude and right standing with God. In addition, having shod your feet in preparation [to face the enemy with the firm-footed stability, the promptness, and the readiness produced by the good news] of the Gospel of peace.  Lift up over all the [covering] shield of saving faith, upon which you can quench all the flaming missiles of the wicked [one].  (Ephesians 6:13-16 MSG)

Why are we to put on God’s complete armor?  The reason we are to do so is because, this is what the word commands us to do, and we must always be obedient to the word.  In addition, we are living in tough economic times and believers are losing their faith as well as their homes, life savings, freedom, liberty and much of their possessions.  Satan is on the attack and he is attacking believers as well as non-believers from all four corners of the world.  Our country is in a financial straight jacket, moral free fall, as well as being on the verge of financial collapse.  Crime in our communities is at an all time high.  Where will it all ends?

Let us understand the truth of Satan’s evil ways and his true motives.  However, in order for believers to realize God’s truth and position themselves to fight the good fight, believers must be united and maintain unity in the body of Christ.  There will be inevitable clashes with evil, and the church must be ready to stand and fight for its entire population.

However, let us remember that as Christians, we battle against rulers and authorities, the powerful evil forces of fallen angels headed by Satan, who is a vicious fighter.  Peter tells us that we can be victorious if we would, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.” (1 Peter 5:8 KJV).  Know that to withstand Satan’s attacks, we must depend on God’s strength and use every piece of his armor.

Brothers and Sisters, try to understand this one truth, this is no ordinary fight.  We are fighting against a very powerful and evil fighting machine.  This one was designed to crush God’s people.  We can describe it as hand-to-hand combat.  However, we are not in an earthly military campaign, our battle is not against people made of flesh and blood.  Instead, we are battling the demons over which Satan has control.  Demons work to temp people to sin.  Satan did not create them because God is the Creator of all.  Rather, the demons are fallen angels who joined Satan in his rebellion and thus became perverted and evil.

These spiritual beings have limited power.  They are invisible to us, operating in the unseen world.  The mighty powers refers to those spiritual powers who aspire to world control.  They are evil (of the darkness) and they currently rule this world.  The wicked spirits in the heavenly realms refers to the demons dwellings, planet and stars, from which the demons control the lives of people.  Here is a host of spiritual forces arrayed against us, requiring us to use God’s full armor.  These are real and powerful beings, not mere fantasies. Believers must not underestimate them.

We face a powerful army whose goal is to defeat Christ’s church.  When we believe in Ghrist, the satanic beings become our enemies, and they try every device to turn us away from him and back to sin.  Although believers are assured of victory, we must engage in the struggle until Christ returns because Satan constantly battles against all who are on God’s side.

Believers response to the reality of this warfare should be to use every piece of God’s armor.  The armor is available, but the believer-soldier must use it.  We would be neglectful to do other wise, for the battle is real, and we are Satan’s targets.  Only with the armor will believers be able to be standing firm, a word describing standing against great opposition; indeed, it would be impossible to stand on our strength alone.  Christian soldiers must be able to hold their ground and not flee or surrender under Satan’s attacks.

Now let me close with this final thought for each one of you who have taken the time to read this entire lesson and the many lessons we teach here daily, “Think globally, and work locally.  Looking beyond ourselves in the real and on line world, to reach out to others who might be in need, for we all are truly our Brothers Keeper, may the grace of God abide in you now and forever, in Jesus name, Amen.

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MY RELATIONSHIP STRATEGIES (PART 7)

MY RELATIONSHIP STRATEGIES (PART 7)

IS TRADITIONAL MARRIAGES A THING OF THE PAST?

THE TRADITIONAL MARRIAGE CEREMONY by Davis

Allow me to begin this discussion by giving you the meaning of Traditional Marriages from the Wikipedia the on line Encyclopedia which states: “Marriage is a social union or legal contract between people that creates kinship. It is an institution in which interpersonal relationships, usually intimate and sexual, are acknowledged in a variety of ways, depending on the culture or subculture in which it is found. Such a union, often formalized via a wedding ceremony, may also be called matrimony.”

People marry for many reasons, including one or more of the following: legal, social, libido, emotional, economic, spiritual, and religious. These might include arranged marriages, family obligations, the legal establishment of a nuclear family unit, the legal protection of children and public declaration of commitment.[1][2] The act of marriage usually creates normative or legal obligations between the individuals involved. In some societies these obligations also extend to certain family members of the married persons. Some cultures allow the dissolution of marriage through divorce or annulment.

Marriage is usually recognized by the state, a religious authority, or both. It is often viewed as a contract. Civil marriage is the legal concept of marriage as a governmental institution irrespective of religious affiliation, in accordance with marriage laws of the jurisdiction.

Now listen to how the scriptures describes Marriage and Divorce.  It says concerning the marriage, “Let marriage be held in honor (esteemed worthy, precious, of great price, and especially dear) in all things. And thus let the marriage bed be undefiled (kept un-dishonored); for God will judge and punish the unchaste [all guilty of sexual vice] and adulterous.
Hebrews 13:3-5.”

Concerning Divorce it says, “For the Lord, the God of Israel, says: I hate divorce and marital separation and him who covers his garment [his wife] with violence. Therefore keep a watch upon your spirit [that it may be controlled by My Spirit], that you deal not treacherously and faithlessly [with your marriage mate]. Malachi 2:15-17.”

Today the Pew Research stated that we are having a crisis in our marriages issued a report.  It said Marriage is increasingly optional and could be on its way to obsolescence, according to a survey of more than 2,600 Americans that examines changing attitudes about relationships today.  Among the 2,691 adults surveyed by the Pew Research Center last month, 39% say marriage is becoming obsolete, up from 28% who responded to the same question posed in 1978 by Time Magazine, which participated in the survey.

However, my own research finds that marriages has an opportunity to grow and be strengthen in such a way that will increase more people moving towards marriage and those that are in marriages desiring to stay and make their marriages last forever.  What I am saying is that there are certain growing dynamics that can occur only within the dynamic of commitment.  Without commitment, you cannot learn to care for another person more than yourself.  You cannot learn to value the growth of strength and clarity in another soul, even if that threatens the wants of your personality.  When you release the wants of your personality in order to accommodate and encourage another’s growth, you attune yourself to that person’s soul.  Without commitment, you cannot learn to see others as your soul sees them-as beautiful and powerful spirits of Light.

Now as a married person you may say, we have made a commitment, and I would say to you that is good.  Now live up to your commitment and make your marriage last. However, where I want to bring you too in understanding this new dynamic of commitment is the commitment of a spiritual partnership.  This is a partnership between equals for spiritual growth. This is much different from your traditional partnerships of marriage which was designed to assist physical survival, and in which the partners do not necessarily see themselves as equals.  When two people marry, they participate in an energy dynamic in which they merge their lives in order to help each other survive physically.  The traditional marriage is no longer functional according to the Pew Research Center Poll, but I say to you, It can be replaced with a new type of marriage that is designed to assist spiritual growth.

DEVELOPING A SPIRITUAL PARTNERSHIP (A new type of Marriage)

The underlying premise of this new type of marriage is called; a spiritual partnership and it is a sacred commitment between the partners to assist each other’s spiritual growth.  Spiritual partners recognize their equality.  Spiritual partners are able to distinguish personality from soul, and, therefore, they are able to discuss the dynamics between them, their interactions, on a less emotionally-bound ground than husbands and wives.  That ground does not exist within the consciousness of marriage.  It exists only within the consciousness of spiritual partnership because spiritual partners are able to see clearly that there is indeed a deeper reason why they are together, and that that reason has a great deal to do with the evolution of their souls.

When you commit to a spiritual partnership with another human being, you bring the energy of the traditional marriage of spiritual partnership into the physical arena.  You begin to form and to live by the values, perceptions, and actions that reflect equality with your partner and a commitment to his or her spiritual development and your own.  You begin to set aside the wants of your personality in order to accommodate the needs of your partner’s spiritual growth and, in doing that, you grow yourself.  That is how spiritual partnership works.

You begin to see that what is necessary to the health of your partnership is identical with what is necessary to your own spiritual growth, that each of you holds the pieces that the other is missing.  If you are jealous, for example, you will find that jealousy is what brings to the surface in your partner an aspect that needs to be healed, and that aspect is mirrored in yourself.  You begin to value your partner’s contribution to your development.  You experience that his or her perceptions and observations are helpful, and, indeed, central, to your growth, that conversations between you stir deep waters.

You learn the roles of love and commitment and trust in making your partnership work.  You learn that love alone is not enough, that without trust, you are not able to give and to receive the love that both of you have for each other.  You learn that your commitment must be translated into a form that satisfies the needs of both you and your partner.  You learn to value the needs of your partner as much as you value your own, because the partnership that you both want requires two healthy and inwardly secure individuals.

You learn to trust not only each other, but also your ability to grow together.  You learn that you put your partnership most at risk by avoiding that which you are most afraid will destroy it.  It is not easy to express what is inside you especially that which makes you feel vulnerable or painful or angry or upset.  These are the emotions that empower words that can do either damage or can do so much healing.  You learn that sharing your concerns with consideration and the intention to heal and trust in the process is the only appropriate avenue.  As you approach your needs with courage instead of fear, you ignite a sense of trust.  The true human condition in its most perfect form has no secrets.  I do not hide, but exists in clear love.

You learn not to do stupid and careless things to each other.  You learn that wanting what you want is not enough, but that you must both want it deeply and create it in every day, that you must bring it into being and hold it being with your intentions.  As the consciousness of each of you becomes lighter, your partnership becomes richer.

You learn the value of considering the other’s position.  By becoming the other person, by truly walking into the fears of the other and then returning into your own being, you open up the conversation to transcend the personal and become healing at the impersonal.  This allows you to see each other as spiritual playmates as you work through the areas that require healing in each of you.  Even into the toughest moments of your work on feelings of insecurity, you can be light and remind yourself that you are spirits who have taken on the physical experience and have far greater power than you are showing in the moment of weakness.

The things that the individuals have to learn in spiritual union with another individual are the groups, the community’s and the nation’s to learn in spiritual union with other groups, communities and nations.  The choice in each instance is between learning through fear and doubt or through wisdom, between the lower-frequency energy currents of the personality and the higher-frequency energy currents of the soul.  If the anger of one personality toward another creates distance, shatters intimacy and causes defensiveness, the anger of one nation, or religion, or sex toward another produces the same.  If the concern of one personality for another, produces closeness, appreciation and mutual regard, the concern of one nation, or religion, or community for another produces the same.  The dynamic is identical.

You are related to every form of Life upon this planet and beyond.  As your soul evolves, you move into greater awareness of the nature of that relationship, and the responsibilities that you assume.

The bond between spiritual partners exists as real as it does in a traditional marriage, but for significantly different reasons.  Spiritual partners are not together in order to quell each other’s financial fears or because they can produce a house in the suburbs and that entire conceptual framework.  The understanding or consciousness that spiritual partners bring to their commitment is different, and, therefore, their commitment is dynamically different.  The commitment of spiritual partners is to each other’s spiritual growth, recognizing that that is what each of them is doing on Earth, and that everything serves that.

None of the vows that a human being can take can prevent the spiritual path from exploding through and breaking those vows if the spirit must move on.  It is appropriate for spiritual partners to remain together only as long as they grow together.

Spiritual partnership is a much freer and more spiritually accurate dynamic than marriage because spiritual partners come together from a position of spirit and consciousness.  How spiritual partners merge and move their concept of partnership is a matter of free will.  So long as they recognize that they bring the consequences of their choices into their partnership, and know the full extent of their choices, that is what influences the manner and direction that the partnership goes.

Let us understand this final thing; the institution of marriage will not disappear overnight even though a great percentage of Americans say that it is on the decline, this is according to the Pew Research Center just last month.  Marriage will continue to exist, but marriages that succeed will only succeed with the consciousness of spiritual partnership.

Now let me close with this final thought for each one of you who have taken the time to read this entire lesson and the many lessons we teach here daily, “Think Globally, and work locally.  Looking beyond ourselves in the real and on line world, to reach out to others who might be in need, for we all are truly our Brothers Keeper, may the grace of God abide in you now and forever, in Jesus name, Amen.

USING SEX AS A TOOL IN YOUR RELATIONSHIP

Are you the type of person that is always taking and never giving? Do you seek sex from your spouse for the pure enjoyment of getting your rocks off, and not being mindful of your spouse’s need?
We need to understand that we all have needs, and we must learn to be respectful of our partners. Sex is primarily a spiritual act of oneness symbolized with a physical act. For it to be a blessing in marriage, there needs to be emotional and spiritual wholeness, free of domination, manipulation and control from either spouse.

Emotional wounding or bondage in either person will damage and distort sexual intimacy. To have a healthy sexuality, you need complete trust, mutual respect and appreciation of each other which leads to oneness of body, soul and spirit. This creates a godly sexual soul tie. An ungodly sexual soul tie occurs when sexuality becomes a tool of control. Yes, there can be an ungodly sexual soul tie even in Christian marriage. There can even be sexual abuse in Christian marriage, which is covered up by insisting on the scriptural submission of women to the will of the male.

Know in your heart, that it is a sin to dominate, manipulate or control a spouse in any way, including sexuality. It shows disrespect and treats the person as an object to meet the emotional needs of the other.

Sexuality can be used as a tool of punishment or reward to control the other spouse. When it is used as a way of reassuring yourself of worth or acceptance, it can easily become an addiction that drives you for more. A very simple test of sexuality is to ask yourself this question, “during sex are you lovingly giving yourself to your spouse or taking what you believe to be rightfully yours?” If you are taking then you are on dangerous ground!

In my observation, most sexual problems are emotional and spiritual, not physical. The solution is the healing of our wounds. We need to learn to love unconditionally. When we can detach ourselves from believing that we have total control of our spouses’ body, mind and soul and learn to trust and give them the love and respect they deserve, then we are on our way to learning the greatest lesson of all. “The art of a lover is to make the love last as long as possible.” Capture the spirit of this sentence and you capture the meaning of learning how to love unconditionally. In any relationship, this is the greatest challenge of all. However, it is one that we must learn to embrace, and understand if we are to have a complete loving and romantic life together as one.

Using Sex as a tool to control your spouse will only destroy any love that was developed in the relationship from the beginning.  Sooner are later your spouse is going to get tire of being used and abused and the results is going to end in disaster.  Learn to build respect between you and your spouse, and give without expecting anything in return.  Know that God is love, and He commands us to love our neighbor as ourselves.  That simply means loving our spouse and their bodies as we would love our self and our own bodies.

 

FINDING HAPPINESS IN YOUR MARRIAGE

Happiness in marriage is not something that just happens.  A good marriage must be created.  In the art of marriage the little things are the big things…

It is never being too old to hold hands.

It is remembering to say, “I love you,” at least once each day.

It is never going to sleep angry.

It is at no time taking the other for granted; the courtship shouldn’t end with the honeymoon, it should continue through all the years.

It is having a mutual sense of values and common objectives; it is standing together facing the world.

It is forming a circle of love that gathers in the whole family.

It is doing things for each other, not in the attitude of duty or sacrifice, but in the spirit of joy.

It is speaking words of appreciation and demonstrating gratitude in thoughtful ways.

It is not expecting the husband to wear a halo or the wife to have the wings of an angel.  It is not looking for perfection in each other.  It is cultivating flexibility, patience, understanding and a sense of humor.

It is having the capacity to forgive and forget.

It is giving each other an atmosphere in which each can grow.

It is finding the room for the things of the spirit.  It is a common search for the good and the beautiful.

It is establishing a relationship in which “the independence is equal, the dependence is mutual and the obligation is reciprocal.”

It is not only marrying the right partner, it is being the right partner.

It is discovering what marriage can be, at its best, as expressed in the words Mark Twain used in a tribute to his wife: “Wherever she was, there was Eden.”

YOUR TIME IS WINDING DOWN

Now listen carefully to these words my friends.  “Do not forget this one thing, dear friends:  With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day.  The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness.  He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to peerish, but everyone to come to repentance.”  (2 Peter 3:8-9).  Notice the similarity between these verses and the following statement by Moses:  “For a thousand years in your sight are like a day that has just gone by, or like a watch in the night”  (Psalm 90:4).  In the same psalm, Moses observed, “The length of our days is seventy years–or eighty, if we have the strength; yet their span is but trouble and sorrow, for they quickly pass, and we fly away” (Psalm 90:10).  If one thousand years equaled one day, our seventy years would last for only about one and two thirds hours.

If we equate one thousand years with “a watch in the night” (a three-hour period of time), our seventy-year life span reduces to 12.6 minutes!  On this scale, our entire earthly existence passes as a momentary blur.  By contrast, the Lord inhabits all of eternity: “from everlasting you are God”  (Psalm 90:2).

Peter indicates, however, that the reverse is also true; “With the Lord a day is like a thousand years”  From that perspective, God has only waited two days since the first advent of his Son.  We could just as well say, by extension, that for God an infinitesimal moment is like eternity and eternity like an infinitesimal moment.  God views all things as part of an eternal now, and, in each moment, he has all the “time” he needs to provide for each of us the individual care he has promised.

Do you believe that the Sovereign God has given you enough time to accomplish his purposes for your life?  God’s plan for you has been unfolding since the beginning of earthly time.  He calls you to seek out his plan for your life and act on it.  What steps can you take today to begin the work God has called you to do in your family, personal and professional life?  In Jesus name, Amen.

YOUR EMOTIONS ARE SPEAKING

Emotions,and the ways in which we show them, are complex.  Recent research has found that while almost all human beings, there recognize the facial expressions of the six basic emotions – fear, anger, happiness, disgust, surprise, sadness – are recognized instantly by almost all human beings, there are more than thirty further facial expressions that we might use.  We also display our emotions in our posture the way we sit, or the positions of our arms, legs and head. Sometimes the message signaled by our posture or expression can be at odds with that
suggested by our tone of voice or the actual words we are saying.  This is because we often try to regulate or hide our real emotions.  Is it any wonder, then, that reading each other’s feelings correctly can seem such a complicated undertaking?

Sometimes you may find that your partner reacts to you in a way you find perplexing.  What might seem to you a calm discussion can slide swiftly into tension.  It may be that some aspect of your body language of which you are unaware has started this opposition.  A frown, however
fleeting, might be perceived as a expression of hostility or reluctance; a shrug of the shoulders might be taken to mean that you don’t care.  By understanding better how other people are
likely to interpret your facial expressions and bodily postures, you have a better chance of avoiding misunderstandings in the future.

Avoid the trap of trying to limit your body language because you feel it gives away too many of your secrets –  this is merely a recipe for becoming less expressive.  Use your hands freely, as people often do – the hands are eloquent, with a language of their own.  Try also to encourage the mobility of your face.  Usually, these approaches have more to do with loosening a habitual rigidity than with acquiring an entirely new means of communication.  Body language already lies latent within you – it is a matter not of putting on an unfamiliar act but of shedding
unnecessary inhibitions.  You will find, as you use your hands and face more in support of spoken language, that you are more accurately expressing and more deeply feeling whatever it is you have to convey.

OVERCOMING RELATIONSHIPS FEARS

At some stage in your relationship, fear in one form or another is likely to surface and
undermine your happiness.  Let’s have a look at the most common types of fear that occur in relationships and consider some possible ways in which to overcome them.

By far the most prevalent relationship fear is the fear of being rejected by or losing
your partner.  When it first dawns upon you that you are deeply in love with a person and find them irresistible, it is difficult not to assume that everyone else must feel the same way about them too.  Therefore, you fear that someone “better” will entice them away from you.  Or, when you are about to make a commitment – say, when you are on the verge of deciding to live together – you fear that cementing the relationship in this way will somehow make your partner feel tied down and scare them off.  Or, when your relationship has stood the test of time and you feel happy and settled, you might one day suddenly be afraid that your loved one could fall ill and die.

Take a moment now to reflect on your relationship fears, and write down the five
worst.  Now, taking each of these in turn, ask yourself these questions: what would I do if this happen?  Who would be sympathetic?  How would life be a month later?  A year later?  Through these questions you are facing up to your worst fears; and by making contingency plans in case any of these fears is actually realized, you are taking away much of their power over you.

Another common relationship problem (almost the opposite of fear of loss) is fear of
commitment.  This can arise from a bad experience in a previous relationship, whether as a child with a domineering parent, or as an adult with a previous, overly possessive partner.  It may also stem from low self-esteem you believe that you don’t deserve to be loved.  The way to deal with this type of commitment fear is to probe through your past, try to pinpoint the cause and, again, face the fear. This can take courage, but it is well worth it, because once you can accept whatever happened in your past and move on, you will be free to be truly present in your relationship.  There is a third cause of commitment fear—that, deep down, you think you might have made the wrong choice of partner.  If this is truly the case, you owe it both to yourself and to your partner to be honest, to admit your doubts and to walk away from the relationship.

A further type of fear that requires consideration is the fear of violence (not just physical abuse, but also verbal, as well as threatening behavior and shouting).  If you feel that your partner
has a problem with violence, take a firm stand.  Demand that they take a course in anger management or undergo counseling to learn to control themselves.  If they do not agree to seek help, it might be best to leave the relationship until they do.  Love cannot survive in an
atmosphere of fear.

MY MAXAMIZE PRAYER: Father I thank you for allowing me to be in your presents this morning. I realize that I have fallen short of your glory, and I have done many things that were not always pleasing in your sight. But today father, I seek your forgiveness, and ask you for
strength to overcome the obstacles that are keeping my relationships from blousing into full bloom. Give me the wisdom to understand, the power to overcome, and the peace to enjoy all that is in front of me.  In Jesus name. Amen.

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