Monday, February 20, 2017
"On Fire": Listen for this Future Husband 'Trigger Phrase': 'I've Been Praying...'
"Confess to one another therefore your faults (your slips, your false steps, your offenses, your sins) and pray [also] for one another, that you may be healed and restored [to a spiritual tone of mind and heart]. The earnest (heartfelt, continued) prayer of a righteous man makes tremendous power available [dynamic in its working]."---James 5:16(AMPC)
There's an entertainment personality named Terrence J who some of you might be familiar with. He used to host BET's 106 & Park. Then he was a host on E! News Live. He's produced a couple of films. He's acted in them too (Think Like a Man and the sequel, for example).
Anyway, last week, he posted something about his girlfriend that helped to inspire this post: "I'm so genuinely happy. Man, can't believe God hooked me up with Jas. I hit the jackpot."
Sweet. Very. Mostly because life has taught me that when a man is at a point of PUBLICLY PRAISING a woman, he's emotionally on another level concerning her. And his intentions for her.
Clearly, it's in a man's spiritual DNA to praise a man---a woman he loves:
"And Adam gave names to all the livestock and to the birds of the air and to every [wild] beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found a helper meet (suitable, adapted, complementary) for him.
And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam; and while he slept, He took one of his ribs or a part of his side and closed up the [place with] flesh. And the rib or part of his side which the Lord God had taken from the man He built up and made into a woman, and He brought her to the man.
Then Adam said, 'This [creature] is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of a man.'
Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and shall become united and cleave to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. And the man and his wife were both naked and were not embarrassed or ashamed in each other’s presence."---Genesis 2:20-25(AMPC)
Whenever I hear people talk about what a woman should expect in a relationship from a man, a guy pursuing them is what usually tops the list. If y'all have been reading this blog even a little bit, then you know that I'm over here instead: "And the rib or part of his side which the Lord God had taken from the man He built up and made into a woman, and He brought her to the man." (Genesis 2:22--AMPC)
You don't have to *pursue* what's been *brought* to you...
Yeah, personally, I'm more focused on the fact that Adam acknowledged the Woman as being *his Woman*. To me, this is what we need to be listening for more than anything else...a man who sees a woman and "calls her out" in the best way possible. A man who says, "she's a part of me!"
And a godly man?
The best way for him to come to that conclusion is through prayer.
A statement that someone posted last week reminded me of this very fact:
"Imagine a boy praying to God that he marries you..."
How many women look/pray for a man who's a praying man?!
I mean, I know in theory we say that, but when you're on a date with someone or you allow things to get to the point of being in a relationship, do you listen for the phrase "I was praying this morning" or "I prayed about you" or "I prayed for you" or "I've been talking to God about our relationship"?
Because here's the thing about prayer...
As one author stated:
“Ask, and you will receive…” (John 16:24). We complain before God, and sometimes we are apologetic or indifferent to Him, but we actually ask Him for very few things. Yet a child exhibits a magnificent boldness to ask! Our Lord said, “…unless you…become as little children…” (Matthew 18:3). Ask and God will do. Give Jesus Christ the opportunity and the room to work. The problem is that no one will ever do this until he is at his wits’ end. When a person is at his wits’ end, it no longer seems to be a cowardly thing to pray; in fact, it is the only way he can get in touch with the truth and the reality of God Himself. Be yourself before God and present Him with your problems— the very things that have brought you to your wits’ end. But as long as you think you are self-sufficient, you do not need to ask God for anything.
To say that “prayer changes things” is not as close to the truth as saying, “Prayer changes me and then I change things.” God has established things so that prayer, on the basis of redemption, changes the way a person looks at things. Prayer is not a matter of changing things externally, but one of working miracles in a person’s inner nature.
As single women who desire marriage, is it important to pray for our future husband and our future marriage? *Of course it is* (read more about that here, here and here). And, as you're praying, you know what's equally as important? *Praying that your future husband is praying for you*.
I mean, praying about it *regularly* too, for a couple of reasons...
1) As you pray for this, it will change him to be more like God, change you to be more like God and help both of you to recognize the godliness in one another.
2) It will help you to see what kind of woman a godly wife really and truly is. Because as you *serve in prayer* in this way, it will spiritually reveal (I Corinthians 2:14) what God knows you *and* your future husband deserve in a spouse. And in a marriage.
When it comes to praying in general, a particular article recommends praying---not only these things for him, but that he's praying these things for you:
I believe that a relationship with God is the only way you can be fully human---fully yourself. This is the ultimate prayer for your future spouse: that they would become fully formed followers of Jesus.
Wisdom means “learning to live right,” so pray that your future spouse will make wise decisions on a daily basis.
I worked as a youth pastor for a number of years. It was disturbing how many guys wanted to marry a good Christian virgin, but didn’t see the hypocrisy that goes along with sleeping around or looking at porn. It’s such an ugly double standard...Pray that your future spouse chooses purity in their other relationships.
What you need to do: Evaluate what you want versus what you’re doing. By choosing impurity now, you’re stealing from someone else’s spouse and you’re cheating on your own future marriage. Choose purity.
Selflessness is the most underrated value of our generation, and to me, it’s the most attractive virtue. This isn’t about being less selfish---it’s about thinking about ourselves less. Pray that your future spouse will develop an others-focused mentality.
I’m sure you’ve heard of the 5 Love Languages---quality time, acts of service, gift-giving, words of encouragement, beard-stroking. And many many more, of course. Pray that your future spouse will love others the way they need to be loved. Pray that your future spouse will learn to navigate relationships in a spirit of understanding, grace, and love.
It’s pretty obvious at this point: The American dream is the world’s nightmare. It’s also a detriment to our spiritual walk- we cannot serve both God and money.
Scripture is very clear. In fact, the Bible talks more about money than heaven and hell combined. It’s so easy to settle into a 9-5, collect a paycheck, manicure the lawn, walk the dog, juggle the payments, and live in air-conditioned luxury.
Pray that your future spouse will never buy into that house of cards. Pray that they’ll never believe the lie that stuff will bring them fulfillment.
While most people settle for a career, Christ invites us into a higher calling – a vocation where our life speaks of who we are. Pray that your future spouse will enter the fullness of their calling – to do all they were created to do, and be all they were created to be.
What you need to do: Discover your giftings and strengths and spiritual gifts, and put them into action for a mission and purpose that extends far beyond your lifetime.
Chills. Can you sense how praying this for your future husband *and* praying that he's praying this about you can already make you esteem marriage, honor biblical standards and feel closer to him in the spirit realm (I Corinthians 2:14)?
Just think about it:
"God, please inspire my husband to pray for my purity tonight. I'm really tempted."
"God, please wake my husband to pray for my calling. I want ours to complement each other's."
"God, please ask my husband to praise for how selfish I can be. I want to do better."
We have to remember a promise that God has given us concerning prayer; something that Christ himself once said: " “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) Marriage is spiritual. MARRIAGE. IS. SPIRITUAL. It's doing the relationship a *huge* disservice to think that you have to, or should, wait until you're united with someone physically in order for the union to hold value. Prayer can unite the two of you---even now.
Another awesome thing that happens?
In the article "How to Pray for Your Future Wife", the author shares this point:
“But wait,” you may say. “I don’t know who she is.”
But God does. He knows her name. He knows how you will meet her. He knows the moment you will propose. He knows the exact look (or how many tears) you’ll get in your eyes when you see her walk down the aisle. He knows every marital struggle you will face. He knows how, through marriage, you will learn to depend upon His grace even more. He knows precisely what He has in store for you and your wife.
Unfortunately, all too often, the average guy does not start thinking seriously about his future alongside one of God’s daughters until he actually meets her.
That is sad, both for the guy…and his future wife...
If you are growing in your love for Him, then you’ll want what He wants, and He wants certain things for your future wife even now. So why would you not go before Him now to ask Him to give her those things?
So ask Him, men.
Ask in His name (John 14:13).
Ask according to His will (1 John 5:14).
Ask (Matthew 7:7), and keep asking (Luke 18:1-8; 1 Thessalonians 5:17).
Let me assure you of one thing: if you start praying passionately for your future wife (or for anything else), all the powers of Hell will try to stop you. You will be tempted to distraction, discouragement or disappointment. The Enemy does not want you to pray. He wants you to remain silent, and he wants her, and you, to remain unchanged.
Don’t stop praying.
This is the woman who will share life with you, the one you’ll promise, before God, to love and honor until the end, and the woman with whom you will become one. God tells us to cherish our wives “just as Christ does the church” (Ephesians 5:29). The word “cherish” means literally “to keep warm” (like a mother hen keeps her chicks safe and warm under her wings). You are called to reflect Jesus to your wife and treat her as a precious gift of God. One of the ways that Christ cherished the church was by praying for her (John 17:20-26).
You don’t have to wait until you know who she is to begin cherishing your wife. (And you don’t have to wait to ask her Heavenly Daddy for her hand.)
If you have the desire to be honorable, masculine, Christ-like and, yes, romantic…then be the leader, man up, go before Him, get on your knees and fight for her in prayer even now.
That’s what women want.
How do I know?
I asked them.
Again. Chills. Only a spiritually broken woman who doesn't understand the true value of marriage is a woman who would want a man who does not have a relationship with God. "Want" (because we all can be, and probably have been, tempted---I Corinthians 10:13) in these sense of seriously contemplating marriage with a person who is not in communication with the Lord *and* honors the Father, Son and Holy Spirit (I John 5:8). For one thing, it goes directly against biblical instruction because we are told to not unequally yoke ourselves with unbelievers (2 Corinthians 6:11-18). Secondly, spiritually whole women want to be with a spiritually whole man. And, one example of that kind of individual is a man who prays.
So, that's my prayerful recommendation...
That as you're going to God about marriage...
You'll pray that your future husband prays for you.
On surprising levels, it will bring peace and clarity to your spirit...
I promise you that!
His Purpose, His Presence, His Peace...