Monday, April 30, 2012

"On Fire": Loving with Consequences


Earlier today, I was reading an article entitled, "Are You Ready for Marriage? 8 Ways to Tell". It's not like we all haven't read something similar to this before, but sometimes things are worded...*presented* in a way that catches your attention, especially so. In this case, for me, it was this:

"What would marriage give you that you don't already have? What would you be giving up?"

So often, we as singles don't embrace the, more than anything, *freedom* (perhaps because we don't embrace its truth!-John 8:32) that comes with being without a mate. To be honest, I think a big part of it is due to something that I shared with a spiritual sistah on yesterday: VERY FEW OF US ACTUALLY ARE SINGLE; VERY FEW OF US ACTUALLY LIVE OUR LIVES WITHOUT BEING CONSUMED, ONE WAY OR ANOTHER, BY A MAN. It took me a long time to get to the place of acceptance within my own self that single living isn't just about not having a man in my bed, but also not having one preoccupying my mind/heart/soul space, either.

Now that doesn't mean that the desire (Genesis 3:16) isn't there. Nor does it mean that a fine man doesn't cross my mind (someone had to hold my piece actually when I saw Channing Tatum in a recent movie trailer-whew!). But what it does mean is that when women *really take the time* to answer what marriage would bring them that they don't already have, when they *really focus* on what they would be giving up, it's kind of amazing how you may discover that it's not *marriage* so much that you're needing *first* (Psalm 37:23). It may be a dose of high self-esteem. It may be freedom, once and for all, from a sexual/lust/past man addiction (or is it obsession)? It may be getting your finances in order or actually taking the time to figure out what *you* want to do with *your life*. It may be doing some of the traveling that you've been a broken record about ('cause some people's husband's have *no desire* to visit or live when they do!). And when you discover what the *true issue* is, it's funny what happens. You end up being so busy handling *your business* (I Thessalonians 4:11) that a man coming along is *surplus* more than someone to fill some kind of void (after all, we came from *his rib* remember? He's the one who's lacking!).

So what does this have to do with the title of the message for today?

Well, there was a link to another article tied to first one that I referenced. It was entitled, "10 Things I've Learned in 36 Years of Marriage". It's packed with some good info, but I wanted to share this point in particular:

3. Life comes in cycles. Marriage is like a rose bush. It contains both beautiful flowers and thorns. Sometimes the flowers bloom and it is fragrant and wonderful. Sometimes the blooms fall off and all you see is the thorns. If you nurture the plant and keep it healthy, you can count on the blooms returning. Learn to accept it all with patience.

You know, whenever I do premarital counseling, it tickles me when I hear people say in response to why they want to get married: "I'm ready to have sex", "I'm tired of being alone", "My clock is ticking", "I don't feel like I can get to the next level without it", "I feel like it's my calling to be married." So much *I-ing*. It's not that I can't relate to those answers. It's just that, to this day, I haven't heard people say, "I can't wait to help him become the best person in Christ that he can be *even if he's going to be my cross to bear*", "I know I have some character issues and he's got the perfect temperament to help me purge some of those demons", "I am immature about love and I think marriage will teach me what the whole 'Husbands, love your wives as Christ loved the Church' dynamic is all about", "I am a controlling person and I need to learn how to submit to authority", "My house is a mess and it will help to hold me accountable when it comes to some of my nasty habits."

Because you see, here's the deal. When I read that quote about not investing your feelings until you're ready to deal with the consequences, while it is profound standing all on its own, I thought about how so few people *really think about* the definition of the word "consequence"; that one of them is "the effect, result, or outcome of something occurring earlier".

Following this message, I will be sharing a few other things that some wives wish they knew as single women. Some things that would have spared them some of the *consequences* that they are now experiencing. Some that could have been avoided had they been whole in their singleness.

That said...

You know, some of us don't get just how deep Lamentations 3 really is. Last week, I shared the Message Version of it with several people in my world. Here's just an excerpt:

"God proves to be good to the man who passionately waits,
   to the woman who diligently seeks.
It's a good thing to quietly hope,
   quietly hope for help from God.
It's a good thing when you're young
   to stick it out through the hard times.
When life is heavy and hard to take,
   go off by yourself. Enter the silence.
Bow in prayer. Don't ask questions:
   Wait for hope to appear.
Don't run from trouble. Take it full-face.
   The "worst" is never the worst."---Lamentations 3:25-30(Message)


You know how the Word, which is Adonai (John 1:1), says that in all of our getting, we should get *any understanding* (Proverbs 4:7). There are many "On Fire" women who write me, discouraged, as they wonder where he is and when he'll arrive. But just look at what the verses say in Lamentations: God is GOOD to the women who DILIGENTLY seek. It is GOOD to QUIETLY HOPE for help from God. When life gets hard GET QUIET AND PRAY. *DON'T ASK QUESTIONS*. Just WAIT FOR HOPE TO APPEAR. Don't RUN. The worst is NEVER the worst.

Something that I'm personally accepting is that *love really is patient* (I Corinthians 13:4) and when Lamentations tells us that the Lord's mercies and compassions are new *every day*, even our single status falls into this category. I'm *so glad* that I serve THE GOD of PERFECT TIMING (Acts 1:7-Message). That he wants my covenant love experience to be filled with *good consequences* rather than regret and that this *sacred time* is for me to plant *good seeds of wholeness* so that the outcome can be that the next man that I find myself having deep feelings for, I'll be ready for the effect, result, *the outcome*. Hmph. THE. OUTCOME.:

"For I know the thoughts and plans that I have for you, says the Lord, thoughts and plans for welfare and peace and not for evil, to give you hope in your final outcome."---Jeremiah 29:11(AMP)

Well...that's all she wrote today. At least on this blog. 

WAIT FOR HOPE TO APPEAR. 

HOPE IS A PART OF YOUR FINAL OUTCOME.

IF YOU CHOOSE TO LOVE *WISELY*,YOU CAN HAVE BLESSED CONSEQUENCES.

BECAUSE HOPE DOES NOT DISAPPOINT (ROMANS 5:5).

WE KNOW THIS TO BE TRUE BECAUSE GOD SAID IT. AND HE CANNOT LIE (TITUS 1:2).

tmm,

SRW

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

"On Fire": What Would You WARN Your Future Husband About?



Yesterday, I penned an entire devotional on warning signs. So, I kinda knew that was a heads up for some other "warnings" that may present themselves throughout the upcoming days ('cause messages that you share, more times than not, are for you...*first*).

One warning that I *just read* a second ago made me smile. It was simply *cute enough*. So much so, that I wanted to share it with the ladies. It's entitled, "Warnings For My Future Husband" and it provides cute and quirky insights (more like *foresights*) from a gal named Lindsay. Take this one, for instance:


"I don’t shave my legs above the knee between November and March (October through April if we move above the Mason-Dixon). I apologize for this in advance; I know it’s not an ideal situation for you. I’m secretly hoping that you are one of those guys who grows his beard out in the winter. If you’re one of those, I think you’ll understand where I’m coming from."

And this...

"I don’t play well with others in the kitchen. I will try to boss you around, even if you are making your great-grandmother’s recipe that you’ve made 200 times. If I am annoying you, please send me away to walk the dog or buy that one ingredient you 'forgot.' If, however, I am taking the lead on the cooking that night, I hope you’ll humor me and allow me to bark orders at you like I’m Mario Batali when there’s only five minutes left on Iron Chef. And, while we’re on the subject, please never root for Bobby Flay when we are watching Iron Chef. I don’t care if it’s a rerun and you know he’s going to win. I hate that guy. No rooting for Flay."

As someone who does premarital (and marital) counseling, *I promise you* that there would be *a lot less* casualties when it comes to unhappy unions if it those sessions were globally this thorough. After all, warnings aren't always *bad*, but they do give a word of *caution* about some things so that people can *prepare*.

So you know what I'm thinking, right? Somewhere amidst all of the journaling and love letter writing that you may be doing in relationship to your future beloved, this could be a fun and really relevant exercise. One, so that "he" can get in a few laughs and "Ohhh...OH-KAY" moments on the back side of the broom jumping and two, so that *you* can actually see some things about yourself beforehand too. Because, indeed, while some things may be "This is just who I am. Deal with it" 'ish, others may be some things that could use some fine-tuning on the single side of life.

Anyway. Just a thought.

Have a good one (and check out the full letter if you have a minute or two),

SRW

Sunday, April 22, 2012

"On Fire": QUOTE OF THE DAY



After watching an Oprah's Next Chapter episode featuring Gloria Steinem a bit ago, there were two things that I dug. One, that Gloria got married in her 60s (you're *never too old* for real love) and two, what Oprah said in response to Gloria's story about her wonderful-yet-short-lived marriage (he died of brain cancer three years after they married):

"[How wonderful that] you can be with a man who wants you to be fully yourself."---Oprah Winfrey

So many of us are trying to use a man to fill our voids rather than using our time as singles to be, yes, FULLY OURSELVES. When we're complete, we can help (Genesis 2:18) out of *overflow* rather than *lack*.

Good stuff, Ms. Winfrey.

tmm,

SRW

"On Fire": Do You HELP or HURT?



This week's food for thought it pretty simple. As I was blogging for another site, I was led (Luke 12:12) to the definitions of "help" and "hurt" AND the way we were introduced onto this earth:

"And the Lord God said, 'It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.'"---Genesis 2:18(NKJV)

Help: to give or provide what is necessary to accomplish a task or satisfy a need; contribute strength or means to; render assistance to; cooperate effectively with; aid; assist; to save; rescue; succor; to make easier or less difficult; contribute to; facilitate; to be useful or profitable to; to refrain from; avoid (usually preceded by can or cannot)

Hurt: to cause bodily injury to; injure; to cause bodily pain to or in; to damage or decrease the efficiency of (a material object) by striking, rough use, improper care, etc.; to affect adversely; harm; to cause mental pain to; offend or grieve

In thinking about your past relationships, your current situation and what you desire for your future, are you being a HELP to the men in your life ('cause we can help more than in a romantic sense) or are you HURTING them?

Definitely something to think about. A few times.

tmm,

SRW

Thursday, April 19, 2012

An Ounce of Prevention: "When a Man Tells You He Doesn't Want to Get Married Believe Him..."

Speaking of an ounce of prevention, this gets a straight up copy and paste:

"When a Man Tells You He Doesn't Want to Get Married Believe Him..."


… Men are straight forward beings. They’re not really into verbal manipulation and double meanings. So ladies, if you are dating a man and he very plainly tells you that he doesn’t want to get married, he doesn’t want to get married and he’s not waiting for you to try and change his mind.

It’s easy to cling to the hope that maybe he just doesn’t want to get married right now while you continue to get emotionally invested. Maybe after two or three years together he will suddenly change his mind, you think. Once he sees how wonderful you are, you rationalize.

Ask any married men about their wives and the first time they met them. Usually the memory is recalled with a smile and a mention of “just knowing” she was the one. I’ve yet to have a man tell me he firmly told his wife he didn’t want to get married but she hung around anyway and wore down his resistance.

Another instance that causes much confusion in the smitten hearts of women is the man who solemnly swears to never marry… then marries the next girl he goes out with. The problem here is the incomplete sentence. When a man gives you the “I don’t want to get married” line quietly finish his sentence in your head, “I don’t want to get married … to you“. Then repeat it to yourself as many times as needed to make it firmly sink in.

Ouch. I know. I’ve been on the receiving end of this on more than one occasion. It happens to the best of us. But it’s better to take his statement at the face value in which it was intended than dwell in the land “maybe he’ll change his mind” and waste your valuable time and energies.

Next time you hear this statement don’t get offended at his honesty but also don’t go into denial that he just hasn’t experienced your mind changing awesomeness either. Graciously and sincerely state you have different long term plans and wish him well.

Should you continue to date him? If you plan on getting married, NO! However, if you can legitimately accept that you will not get married to this person, and are not just saying that because you don’t want to lose him, and you can be happy settling for being forever a girlfriend never a bride, then you knock yourself out.

Now ask me if you try and remain friends. Again, NO!


Hanging around in the friend zone risks your dignity. Are you settling for friendship in hopes that once he knows you better he’ll see what a fool he’s been? Yeah, maybe if life were a Hollywood movie where things are resolved in 120 minutes.

Ask yourself, are you willing to watch him date other women and eventually go on to get married despite all his past protest? Because that is the fate that typically awaits women willing to settle for friendship with a man they once dated.

I know this probably sounds all terribly unromantic and cynical but believe me, this is a positive message. Don’t waste time on a man who at best can offer you a “maybe” to having a future with him. If he can be honest with you, then it’s worth it to be honest with yourself.


GOOD. STUFF.

SRW

An Ounce of Prevention: "Don't Marry Out of Fear"

Well...

In the middle of a semi-impromptu counseling session on yesterday, *yet again*, I was listening to someone say, "I think I did it while ignoring the warning signs because I thought [my spouse] would change."

AND THIS TIME IT WAS A GUY SAYING IT.

Anyway, as I was reading an article this morning entitled, "Why Women Marry the Wrong Men", I thought this was worth sharing:

She believes that listening to your gut and knowing when to walk away comes from the ability to see ourselves.

"It's about how to know yourself well enough to know what you're looking for," she says. "It's the self-awareness to know what you contribute to the success of failure of that [relationship] and having the self-confidence to stand on your own two feet rather than fall into a bad relationship."

As for the fear of being alone forever, Fletcher points out that "for well-being, mental and physical health, all the statistics show that you're better off alone than in a bad marriage."


Oh and as for the five main reasons why women ignore all of this and jump the broom anyway?

1. We've dated for so long I don't want to waste all the time we have invested in the relationship.


2. I don't want to be alone.


3. He'll change after we get married.


4. It is too late, too embarrassing and/or too expensive to call off the wedding
.

5. He is a really nice guy; I don't want to hurt his feelings.

And the root of all of these? FEAR. And what does the Word tells us about fear as it relates to love? That they don't relate:

"There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love."---I John 4:18(NKJV)

Can you *imagine* how many bad marriages wouldn't even exist if people took this verse both seriously and literally? If people *respected* the fact that the Lord has told them that if there is fear in their love relationship then it's not a healthy love relationship at all?

Definitely something to think about...*beforehand*.

tmm,

SRW


Wednesday, April 18, 2012

"On Fire": QUOTE OF THE DAY

Indeed...

*No one* can read our minds but the Most High. Shoot, *even we* don't understand what's going on as clearly as we seem to think that we do a lot of times. Anyway, this is a good reminder right here for us all:

10.)  Don’t expect guys to know what you are thinking. Even Einstein had no idea what women were thinking, and he was a genius. Guys just don’t pick up on your clues or your implications. We think very differently and are more direct. If something is on your mind, say it, don’t just think it.

I actually dug this #7 point as well:

7.)    Don’t date just to have a date. Serial dating is a bad thing. When you date a different guy all the time, you are depriving yourself of the opportunity to meet other guys. Don’t be afraid to be single or dateless. Remember, you must be independent before you can be dependent so go out with your girlfriends and have fun. You never know who you will meet.

You can read this author's entire list here.

tmm,

SRW

Sunday, April 15, 2012

An Ounce of Prevention: "What FELICIA Wishes She Knew as a Single Woman Before Marriage"

"I'm gonna just put it right on out there and say, 'I wish I had been a real Christian before looking for a Christian man.' When you're not living right, it doesn't matter if you go to church, know the Word or are able to hide your habits and vices from those around you. Fakin' the funk attracts people who do the same and one day you look up only to discover that you're not married to someone who lied to you. You are married to someone who reflects the real truth about who you really are. You can survive it, but trust me, it will be a lot easier on you to live authentically before ever saying 'I do.'"---Felicia (31)

An Ounce of Prevention: "What DIANE Wishes She Knew as a Single Woman Before Marriage"

"I wish I had really healed from my first love before I got married to my husband. So often as women, we are so busy trying to get a man that's not like someone else that we don't choose him for the right reasons. It's more about him not being like our ex then looking for the redeeming qualities that he might have as an individual. You don't want to pick a man out of spite. You want to choose him out of love."---Diane (29)

An Ounce of Prevention: "What KAYLA Wishes She Knew as a Single Woman Before Marriage"

"I wish I knew back then how powerful the wedding night really is and why it's so important not to just keep your future husband from penetrating you, but from partaking in anything that is not rightfully his prior to that moment.

Marital sex is unlike anything you will physically experience with a boyfriend. It's intense. It's fulfilling. But it's also extremely spiritual. Satan wants to do all that he can to rob you of not just being with your husband for the first time, but of him seeing and experiencing those intimate parts of you, on any level, that make the entire wedding night a life-altering experience. You may think it's too extreme to wait to share your first kiss on the altar (in hindsight, I don't), but at least let him enjoy the neck down on the marriage bed. He'll be so excited that you made him wait and you'll be so trusting of him for doing so, that it will make everything that much more special and sacred."---Kayla (32)

An Ounce of Prevention: "Signs of a Healthy Relationship. First being..."

“True love is like a pair of socks: you gotta have two and they've gotta match.”---Unknown


I was reading an article a second ago that listed eight things that make up a healthy relationship and I thought that they were, yeah...pretty healthy. This one right here especially caught my eye:

7. Individual self-worth: You each have a sense of self-worth that is separate from, though supported by, your relationship. In a healthy, happy relationship, partners don’t have to choose between feeling close and being able to be themselves.

INDIVIDUAL SELF-WORTH is so important. There are so many of us that claim to be single, but if we're not dating someone, we're newly out of a relationship or about to enter into one with someone else (or we're mentally obsessing over someone). When it comes to filing your taxes, that may equate to having a true single status, but somehow, I don't think that when God created us a *single beings*, that is what he had in mind.

Being single is about being able to really be *by yourself* to get to really *know yourself*. When a person takes that seriously, that is a blessed season in their life because when you can really understand who you are, then there's a greater clarity on who will be a better complement for you---who will really be able to, after marriage, dwell with you according to understanding (How can "he" be clear when you're not even sure?-I Peter 3:7).

And so, as I was downloading the list into my psyche, I thought about the guest blog that I just posted on X3Church.com this evening that a male friend of mine penned entitled, "Be the Adult in the Room". I asked him to write a piece about what Christian guys who get to have sex with Christian girls before marriage *really think* about them. The entire piece is good (you can check it out here), yet I wanted to share this part especially:

If you want a Christian man to one day be your Christian husband, remember this if nothing else: Christian men want strong women. It’s true that in a moment of weakness, they might smash, but when it’s time to ‘put a ring on it,’ you’re not the one they want.  They want the strong woman that professed Christ into their lives from the beginning.  They want the woman that was down for them by loving them, not by acquiescing to their carnal desire.  You want to be the woman that eventually gets the ring, not the one that gets to watch her man leave at 2:00 am because he’s feeling guilty about what he just did and their relationship doesn’t go any farther. 

I thought about that because I thought, "If you're not strong enough to be alone, how can you be strong enough to be in a relationship?" More and more, I'm leery of women who don't like being by themselves because it sends *huge red flags* that if don't like being with you, why should anyone else?

ONE OF THE GREATEST INDICATIONS OF A HEALTHY RELATIONSHIP WITH SOMEONE ELSE IS THAT YOU ALREADY HAVE ONE WITH YOURSELF.

And you're not "proving that" going---physically, mentally or emotionally---from guy-to-guy all of the time. That's not being single...that's being desperate and anxious. A woman high in self-worth has no reason (*or need*) to be either.

Well, I'm gonna get off of here to pen a devo, but I will be keeping everyone in prayer about this very issue.

Be strong in your own self-worth, *single (whole) ladies*...

SRW

Thursday, April 12, 2012

"On Fire": QUOTE(S) OF THE DAY

So...

I was sending an email to one of the "On Fire" gals about purpose and the Spirit led me to an old school classic by Myles Munroe, "In Pursuit of Purpose" and I was led to share a few main points within this gem of wisdom. Starting at pg. 97...

1) First, purpose gives confidence. It assures us that we are doing the right thing...When we know what God intends for our lives, we can get on with it, assured that our work is not in vain. The Scriptures state that God's purpose will prevail (Proverbs 19:21), His purpose will stand (Isaiah 14:24; 46:10), and all of his purposes are established forever (Psalm 33:11). In essence, when you discover God's purpose for your life, you can be confident and persuaded that you will succeed. This confidence will also inspire the trust of others. Purpose is the key to confidence.

2) Purpose provides protection. In some ways, this benefit of purpose is an extension of the first, because purpose gives the confidence that nothing will harm us until purpose is finished. This includes not only the physical mishaps that might occur, but also the fear, worry and distractions with which the adversary may attempt to deter us from completing our purpose...This same protection is available to all who know their God-given purpose, because God's purposes always prevail. Once God tells you His purpose for your life, relax. He's already told your predestination, so no matter how much pressure comes or how many problems threaten you, they cannot overcome you. When you know and live within God's will for your life, you are invincible until your purpose here is finished. Purpose doesn't make life easy. It makes it possible.

3) Third, purpose empowers perseverance.

GOOD STUFF RIGHT THERE...

Go forth,

SRW

Saturday, April 7, 2012

"On Fire": FUNNY (AND PROFOUND) QUOTE OF THE DAY

"Nothing is sweeter than finding out that the cute boy who dumped you in the 12th grade lives in his mother’s basement."---Unknown


This morning, as I was thinking about Shabbat and how so many people are especially reflecting on the sacrifice that Adonai made on our behalf by way of his Son (John 3:16) this weekend, I also thought about the fact that the Seventh-Day Sabbath (Exodus 20:8-11, Matthew 12:1-8) was so revered that even Christ remained in a state of rest until Resurrection Sunday (Matthew 28:1-8). Based upon all of that *and the hilarious quote* up above, in relationship to this blog, two things came to mind:

1) Most of us are familiar with the fact that 2 Corinthians 1:20(NKJV) states, "For all the promises of God in Him are Yes, and in Him Amen, to the glory of God through us." Promises *in God* are "Yes" and "Amen". They are in the affirmative because he's in agreement with them. That makes sense being that the Word, which is Adonai (John 1:1) states, "Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him." (I John 5:14-15-NKJV)

SO IF GOD SAYS "NO", IT MEANS THAT IT'S NOT A PART OF HIS WILL FOR OUR LIVES. THIS MEANS THAT IT'S NOT WHAT'S BEST FOR US (JAMES 1:17). HOW CAN YOU KNOW THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A "GOD YES" AND A "GOD NO"? WHEN GOD IS IN AGREEMENT, HE MOVES IN THE *AFFIRMATIVE*...THERE'S *POSITIVITY*, THERE'S *TRUTH*, THERE'S *SATISFACTION* (PSALM 145:16). AND THERE'S NOT SPIRITUAL CONFUSION (I CORINTHIANS 14:33).

2) How it really is easy to develop a god complex. Perhaps that's the reason why, "You shall have no other gods before Me" (Exodus 20:3-NKJV) is the first commandment. Just think about it. It was God who resurrected Christ. Therefore, if the Lord saw fit that Christ remain in a state of spiritual sleep (Psalm 13:3), he would've. My point?

ONLY GOD CAN RAISE THE DEAD. THIS MEANS THAT WHEN A RELATIONSHIP IS DEAD, NOT ONLY IS IT "NO LONGER ALIVE", BUT "NO LONGER IN USE, VALID, EFFECTIVE OR RELEVANT". GOD CREATES RELATIONSHIPS THAT ARE *SPIRITUALLY RELEVANT*. WHEN WE SPEND OUR TIME TRYING TO *MAKE RELATIONSHIPS HAPPEN* THAT AREN'T, WE ARE PLAYING GOD. WE ARE EITHER TRYING TO KEEP ALIVE WHAT IS DYING OR WE ARE TRYING TO RESURRECT WHAT IS DEAD---WHAT ONLY GOD CAN DETERMINE WILL BE RELEVANT AGAIN...IF IT'S HIS WILL.

And what does all of this have to do with the lead quote for today? You know, in a poem that I wrote many years ago, the ending of it goes like this: "God promised to give me the desires of my heart, not the aid to my addiction. I was so fixated on you, I had forgotten what I asked God for way before there was a you. Way back when my parent's divorced, when I was introduced to Barbie and Ken dolls. Way back when a guy I had a crush on for six years told me that I was ugly. Way back then, I asked God for love and He has shaken heaven, earth, my heart and this relationship to deliver just that...True love, and this ain't it."

Sometimes we want something, or in the case of this blog *someone*, really badly and we feel like when God says "no" that it's a rejection. Many years ago, the Spirit (John 4:24) had me pen a piece entitled, "The Blessin' in Rejection". Oh how quickly we forget that the Lord doesn't just see the present. He's gifted enough to also see into the future and as my mother has said and I have shared on here on more than one occasion, "God doesn't give us someone for where we are, but where we are going and no one knows that but God." So often, we find ourselves being just like the author of that quote: not being appreciated by the guy we want and not realizing that it's actually a blessing in disguise.

Now, I don't know if it's "sweet" to see the whack dude living at home, but it is definitely a confirmation that when the Lord allows a relational death, it's clearly the way for abundant life (John 10:10). Whether it's by way of something that's *newborn* or by way of *resurrection*, we should leave it to the Most High, the Possessor of heaven and earth (Genesis 14:19), either way.

EVEN IN MATTERS OF THE HEART, WE'RE NOT CALLED TO "PLAY GOD" BUT TO *SERVE HIM*.

Yeah, so praise the Lord for all of the, "Yeah...I don't think you want *that dude*" responses to prayer that he has given you in times past (or for some, that's manifesting *at this very moment*). It's simply his way of clearing a lane for something better. Yep...

GOD CAN *ALWAYS* TOP US (I CORINTHIANS 2:9). WHEN WE TRY AND TOP HIM (OR HIS METHODS OF DOING THINGS), THAT'S JUST ANOTHER FORM OF IDOLATRY THAT WE NEED TO AVOID (I CORINTHIANS 10:14).

Brings a whole 'new meaning to "Let sleeping dogs lie", doesn't it? (LOL-Matthew 7:6-NKJV)

Happy Resurrection Weekend,

SRW

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

"On Fire": QUOTE OF THE DAY

So...

Oprah wrote a letter to her younger (25-year-old, to be exact) self in the upcoming issue of O magazine. It really is a great exercise. I published one of my own in Pure Heart: A Woman's Guide to Sexual Integrity. Anyway, as I was reading a news article about it (it doesn't come out on newsstands until next Tuesday), I really dug this exchange right here: 

"Surprisingly though, given her incredibly drive and success, what is on her mind in that moment is entirely typical of any young woman her age: her boyfriend.

She adds: 'Even so, your biggest concern is how to manage your love life with Bubba. Yes, you are dating someone named Bubba.'
Recalling that she had taken him to see her workplace that day, Oprah assures her young self that though he seemed unimpressed, he was in fact intimidated.

She writes: 'You don't know this, though, because you can see yourself only through his eyes.

'A lesson you will have to learn again and again: to see yourself with your own eyes, to love yourself from your own heart.'

The spiritually motivated media guru remembers that even as a young woman she seemed to understand that the 'high calling' from God would affected change in life and provide fulfillment.

Writing of the day Chris Clark called to offer her the position at the Tennessee station she says: 'Your response was ignited by the words of your then-favorite Bible verse, Philippians 3:14. 'I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.'"


The Word says to "Seek and ye shall find" (Matthew 7:7-8) and in a single state, this is not only the ideal time to *seek* wholeness but if you are in a relationship, to *seek* wisdom (James 1:5) about the man's *real heart, real motives and real intentions*.

Good stuff right there. Amazing how clearly we see in hindsight.

tmm,

SRW

Monday, April 2, 2012

"On Fire": Are You Compromising, Settling or SACRIFICING...

OK...

So, I'm taking a bit of a break from writing and I'm watching a throwback episode of Girlfriends and I thought it might be a good one to remind some women of and introduce it to others. If you're in a situation where you're feeling like you may be losing some of *who you really are* and WHAT YOU REALLY WANT in order to make a relationship work, remember that one *huge benefit* (and blessing) that comes with being single is that under Elohim, YOU ARE YOUR TOP PRIORITY.

Don't *act* married until you actually are...


Yeah...that would include having sex and sleeping together (LOL), but watch the clip anyway. I'm actually referring to something else (oh and if you want to watch Part One, you can view it here.)

To thine own self, be *true*...

In truth, there is *freedom* (John 8:32)...

SRW