Monday, June 2, 2014

"On Fire": The "I'm Being Proactive So I Won't Have to Regret My Marriage" Prayer Project


June is absolutely awesome!

It's my birth month and so that's why I personally feel that way. It also officially marks summer so...there's that too (LOL). Anyway, as I was doing some praying as I'm preparing to leave the 30s (thank the Lord! When you make the most of your time, you don't want to stay where you are; you want to *move forward*) and I was doing some praying for the "On Fire" women after an *intense* couple of weeks of listening to some *really strange marriage stories*, I did some praying and the Lord gave me an idea...

First let me share what, in part, inspired it.

I read an article that stated 50 percent of all wives regret marrying their husbands. As I was looking at some of the reasons why, here is what was presented:

More than half of the women surveyed say they are either bored in bed or can't remember the last time they had sex.

Approximately 60 percent rarely or never have date nights... a fact, we can't help but think, might be contributing to their lackluster sex lives.

More than 50 percent wish their husbands either made more money or made more time for them (um... yeah, shouldn't this number be higher?).

And nearly half say their husbands have changed for the worse since getting married (at least they still have those great personalities).

A lack of intimacy.

A financial problem.

A mate that did not improve. (I wonder how many wives knew that a part of their job is to help to make that happen-Genesis 2:18)

This all leads a lot of wives to feel that they wish they had never gotten married.

And then there's another article entitled "5 Biggest Regrets Divorced People Have About Their Marriage":

Express Yourself. Show your partner you love and care for them in any way you can. Small gestures like complimenting your partner, saying "I love you" or holding hands go a long way. The most important ways to display affection are showing love, showing support, making your partner feel good about themselves and keeping things interesting in the relationship.

The Buck Stops Here. Money matters, discuss it. Money is the number-one source of conflict in most marriages. "Talk money more often—not just when it's tax time, when you have high debt, when bills come along," Dr. Orbuch says.

Write It Off. Leave the past behind you. Dr. Orbuch believes that to engage in a healthy way with your partner, you need to let go of the past. "This includes getting over jealousy of your partner's past relationships, irritation at how your mother-in-law treats you, something from your own childhood that makes it hard for you to trust, a spat you had with your spouse six months ago," according to the article. Write down your thoughts and feelings in a journal, talk to a friend or seek out a professional.

Take a Step Back. Don't play the blame game. Ask your partner for their view of a problem. "There are multiple ways of seeing a problem," says Dr. Orbuch. "By getting your partner's perspective, and marrying it with your perspective, you get the relationship perspective."

Listen Up. Communication is key. Forty-one percent of respondents cited communication as the number-one factor they would change in their next relationship. Dr. Orbuch believes in practicing active listening, "where they try to hear what the other person is saying, repeating back what they just heard and asking if they understood correctly." She also says partners need to reveal more about themselves in order to maintain communication.

As I was talking to one of my absolute favorite married couples this past weekend about what they know about one another now that they didn't at the beginning, I found it interesting that the wife said "I know I am nourished and cherished. I didn't feel that way when I first got married" (shout out to Ephesians 5) and the husband said "I know she is far more equipped for my calling than I thought she was".

Praise Adonai that they stuck it out to get to "the knowing". Not all marriages have the same testimony. Then I thought about how all three of us, as marriage counselors, need to be far more aggressive and intentional when it comes to making sure that people get with God's best for them rather than simply "a spouse", the following verses in Scripture came to mind:

"Again I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.”---Matthew 18:19-21(NKJV)

And then there's these that complement them quite well:

"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 5:13-15(NKJV)

Agreement. About God's will. When it comes to having what we want, if we want God's blessing, there needs to be agreement and it needs to be agreement about what is truly his will. In some ways, especially when it comes to a life partner.

There are a lot of women who I've talked to on here throughout the years and (duh-LOL) a lot of them really want to be married. However, what prayer time revealed to me is that there is a lot of "wanting a man/husband" but not truly *seeking God's will* concerning *the kind of man* who is truly best. For them. *As an individual*.

And so, for this month, I am going to offer to do some "touching and agreeing" for the purpose of truly knowing God's will as it relates to marriage.

Because it really is going to focus on *each individual woman*, it will be one-on-one with the women who reach out ( But what we are going to do is a project that will help to reveal who you are and who God wants for you.

A bold declaration, right?

Well, it's not like it's going to be a fortune cookie or anything. I'm not saying you will walk away knowing the name and address of the guy. I'm saying that, through agreement, I believe (Mark 9:23), that it will become clearer *the kind of person* you are suitable for so that you can avoid regret. *And really avoid divorce*. And once we get those "pieces of the puzzle" together, I will pray along with you for the rest of this month. Because where agreement is, God is and where God is, we can ask what we will.

So, if this resonates with your spirit, hit me up by Thursday, June 5 (the opportunity will be closed after that, just so that I can keep everything organized) and we'll get started.

After all...

When it comes to marital covenant, it's far (FAR) better to be *proactive* about being with the right one than *reactive* in the sense of trying to make it work with the one who was not the best. For you. (Because even when you do that, divorce is not God's will.)



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