Saturday, March 18, 2017

How the Lord Answered My Prayer of 16 Years~Ministry Update

For waters shall burst forth in the wilderness,
And streams in the desert
The parched ground shall become a pool,And the thirsty land springs of water;
In the habitation of jackals, where each lay,
There shall be grass with reeds and rushes.
Isaiah 35:6-7 NKJV


Nothing so clears the vision and lifts up the life, as a decision to move forward in what you know to be entirely the will of God.
~John G. Paton



About a year and a half ago, our family moved from Rhode Island to Wisconsin, obeying our Heavenly Father's leading and calling in our lives to begin a ministry in the Midwest. We came with a minivan packed full to the brim and I came with a very fearful heart, but also with a heart that hoped in my God's precious promises. He went before us. And that first year in the great "wilderness" of Wisconsin was one of the most difficult years of my life, but I would not trade it and the lessons that the Lord taught me through it for anything. 

I missed my family and friends dearly. But I found in my loneliness a Friend in Jesus. I found peace in the quietness of seeking Him. I found rest in depending upon Him alone when there was no one else to turn to. Truly, He gave me grace in the wilderness. 

My husband and I came out here to begin a ministry--people have asked why Wisconsin? Do we have family here? Was it work-related? The very short answer is no. We moved to Wisconsin after years of seeking the Lord and becoming convinced that this was where He wanted us to be--that this was where He wanted us to begin the ministry that He called us to. We moved here in a simple act of obedience to the Lord as He enabled us by His grace--an act of obedience that I struggled with up to the very end when the Lord strongly spoke to me through a Ravi Zacharias sermon and through His Word. I said yes to the Lord through many tears. 

Years before that, I had begun to pray--to pray for the Lord's direction and guidance in my life in regards to this particular calling. I was around 18 years old when the Lord spoke to me--and I never imagined at that point how much time would pass before He accomplished His purpose in this particular area. 

And now I am seeing the fruition of 16 years of waiting in a beautiful and precious answer to prayer. 


My husband and I want to establish a place of rest here--a place where fellow believers can come and have a respite from the world as they seek the Lord, a place for missionaries to stay, a place for pastors to come apart for a time of refreshing, or for any Christian seeking rest and quietness. It needed to be a peaceful place with enough room to house our brothers and sisters. 

When I came here, my heart was burdened with three main concerns. A job for my husband that would provide for our family, a solid Gospel-driven church, and a place, a home, to establish this ministry. 

The Lord mercifully provided a job for my husband in his field just before we moved here and then recently opened up the door for a different job in the same field in response to our prayers for His provision. 

He opened up a place for us to worship Him-- a church that we love and where the Gospel is preached boldly and with compassion. This was another precious answer to prayer.  

But my third concern-- for a place, a home; this prayer went unanswered. I struggled when the time came for our lease to be renewed. We had been here for about a year, living in a rental home that was not the most cost-efficient place to live. We were traveling a good distance to church with two small children and my husband, after the Lord opened up the second job here for him, was commuting about an hour-and-a-half to work each way. 

I felt as though it would be "wiser" to move closer to our church and closer to my husband's job. I prayed and struggled and sought the Lord, earnestly trying to explain to Him why moving at that point would be best . . . 

I heard the Lord's silence. 

We looked at homes to rent in the area where we felt that we should possibly move. We considered purchasing a smaller home, which would be more cost-effective than renting, while we waited for the Lord to open the door for a home for our ministry. 

I felt hesitant, but we continued to explore options. 

The Lord kept stopping us--a house would already be rented or an offer had already been made on a home that we looking at. My husband and I began to think that perhaps the Lord had a different plan in mind and that we were supposed to stay where we were, at least for the time being--but we just could not understand why. We looked at one final house, hoping that maybe the Lord would show us otherwise. 

That night, I read a passage in the devotional Streams in the Desert--


When the cloud remained . . . the Israelites . . . did not set out. (Numbers 9: 19)
This was the ultimate test of obedience. It was relatively easy to fold up their tents when the fleecy cloud slowly gathered over the tabernacle and began to majestically float ahead of the multitude of the Israelites. Change normally seems pleasant, and the people were excited and interested in the route, the scenery, and the habitat of the next stopping place.
Yet having to wait was another story altogether. “When the cloud remained,” however uninviting and sweltering the location, however trying to flesh and blood, however boring and wearisome to those who were impatient, however perilously close their exposure to danger— there was no option but to remain encamped.
The psalmist said, “I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry” (Ps. 40:1). And what God did for the Old Testament saints, He will do for believers down through the ages, yet He will often keep us waiting. Must we wait when we are face to face with a threatening enemy, surrounded by danger and fear, or below an unstable rock? Would this not be the time to fold our tents and leave? Have we not already suffered to the point of total collapse? Can we not exchange the sweltering heat for “green pastures . . . [and] quiet waters” (Ps. 23: 2)?

When God sends no answer and “the cloud remain[ s],” we must wait. Yet we can do so with the full assurance of God’s provision of manna, water from the rock, shelter, and protection from our enemies. He never keeps us at our post without assuring us of His presence or sending us daily supplies.

Young person, wait— do not be in such a hurry to make a change! Minister, stay at your post! You must wait where you are until the cloud clearly begins to move. Wait for the Lord to give you His good pleasure! He will not be late!

And so, against what I humanly deemed as "wise and prudent," I decided to wait upon the Lord for His direction without actively seeking to move forward until I knew His hand leading; my husband and I committed to this course of seeming "inaction," renewed our lease, and decided to wait again upon the Lord in prayer. 



And interestingly, someone very close to me kept reminding me not to limit the Lord--I honestly was very doubtful that the Lord was going to open the door at that point for a home for us that would be the place for our ministry-there seemed to be too many obstacles and I just didn't see humanly how it could be done . . .   But  this person kept telling me to wait patiently--that I and my husband never knew what the Lord would do and at the same time the Lord continually kept reassuring me through His Word that He was ready to act in His perfect way.

The housing market remained grim. I worried and wondered and fretted and then returned to trusting in the Lord as we waited. Nothing came on the market that was suitable. 

Finally, as the time drew closer to when we would need to make a decision about whether or not to renew our lease again (the 6-month period that we had leased our rental house for was drawing closer to its end again), I believed that the Lord was telling me to seek Him more deliberately in prayer, and I set a side a period of time to do this. During that time, nothing still came on the market. Yet I waited, believing that His hand had led me to wait upon Him earnestly in prayer and so I did . . . 

Right at the end of this time of prayer and seeking the Lord, a house came on the market. I can only attribute what happened next as a miracle from the Lord's hand in direct answer to prayer. The house exactly fit what we were looking for for our ministry. It was set on almost four acres in a peaceful setting. Its outbuildings and layout would perfectly accommodate what we have been called to do.  And in the Lord's perfect mercy, the style of the home is one that I love--an old-fashioned 1890s house that reminds me of my beloved New England. Tears of joy come to me even now as I write this, and now that we realize that the Lord has given us this place for this time, for His purposes I can only say


I waited patiently for the Lord;
And He inclined to me,
And heard my cry.
He also brought me up out of a horrible pit,
Out of the miry clay,
And set my feet upon a rock,
And established my steps.
He has put a new song in my mouth—
Praise to our God;
Many will see it and fear,
And will trust in the Lord.

Psalm 40:1-3 NKJV



Furthermore, to add to the Lord's merciful hand in all of these things, the home is located within a much easier commute to my husband's job and near our church. It is in a very rural setting, and yet easily accessible for people to find--I was concerned that we would be "out in the boondocks," in order to find something suitable, but the opposite is the case--we are in a very rural setting, located near a state park , but also in a location that is easy to find and access, which would be helpful for this kind of ministry. It is actually as though this home was made for what the Lord called us to--more than 100 years ago, no less! The Lord never ceases to amaze me and to challenge my "finite" thinking with His infinite plans. For years, I have been fascinated by missionary biographies and stories of the Lord's provision in the lives of people like George Mueller and Hudson Taylor. I have tried to follow their pattern of obedience and trust, although very imperfectly. And now I am again seeing this accomplished in a miraculous and merciful way in my own life. And I praise Him; it is all of grace. 

There were times when I doubted the Lord. There were times when I truly questioned my own sanity--when I questioned whether the Lord had really spoken to us. We had relocated halfway across the United States; some people literally thought that we were crazy, or at best, misled. But I held on to the certainty that the Lord had spoken to us and that He would fulfill His purpose, and He has. At the same time, the Lord held on to me and helped me and strengthened me in my times of discouragement. And He showed me His goodness in a wonderful and miraculous way. He gave us this home. 

Looking back now and writing this, I see that if we had done what seemed "wise" at the time, if we had trusted in our own understanding and ignored the Lord's gentle voice leading us to wait, we would have been locked into another lease or have purchased a home just before the Lord was ready to act and not have been able to move forward into the ministry that He called us to. I have learned through this experience once again, as I have in the past, that it is always better to wait upon the Lord when there is doubt. It is always better to trust in His wisdom, even if it seemingly contradicts the best of human wisdom. His plan may seem like it doesn't make sense, but He is preparing His best for us if we will wait upon Him and receive it. 

And so I praise Him for answered prayer--the answered prayer of 16 years, the prayer that I prayed in a little bedroom in Rhode Island as a teenager. And I pray that He would continue to pour out His grace in my life and make me into a willing vessel to accomplish His purposes. I pray that He will use this place of rest for His glory. And I pray especially that this testimony would strengthen other believers who are in a "waiting" place to hope in the Lord and trust utterly in Him. He is good to those who wait for Him. And they will not be ashamed. 
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Below are the links to other blog posts that I've written detailing our move here and how the Lord has worked His grace through our lives,  if anyone would like to read more about it--

Flying to A Summer Land
The Gift of Quietness
Grace in the Midwest Wilderness
When you Just Can't Do It
An Impossible Prayer Request
Midwest Ministry update




You might find me on these link-ups:


Strangers and Pilgrims on EarthInspire Me MondayLiteracy Musing MondaysThe Modest MomWhat Joy is Mine, Mom's the Word, Rich Faith Rising, Mom's Morning Coffee, Raising Homemakers, Classical HomemakingA Wise Woman Builds Her Home, Woman to Woman Ministries,  Testimony TuesdayTell His Story, Women With Intention WednesdaysMessy Marriage,  Graced Simplicity, Imparting Grace, Thought Provoking ThursdaySoul SurvivalGood Morning MondaysThe Weekend BrewCounting My BlessingsThe HomeAcre Hop, Mommy Moments Link UpGrace and Truth LinkupFaith Filled FridayTell It To Me TuesdaysSHINE Blog HopTGI Saturdays Blog HopRaRaLinkupWord of God SpeakBooknificent ThursdayLiving Proverbs 31Sharing His Beauty Blog LinkupCoffee For Your Heart Weekly LinkUpYou're the Star Blog HopHomesteader HopFresh Market FridayHeart Encouragement Thursday Sitting Among Friends Blog PartyFabulous Warm Heart Party


Sunday, March 5, 2017

Devotional Spotlight~~Now: Purposeful Steps Toward A More Abundant Life, by Sarah Coller



I have been blessed to get to know Sarah through her wonderful blog Classical Homemaking. Sarah has much wisdom to share and does so in a gracious, engaging way. When I heard that Sarah had recently released a women's devotional, I was excited and am anticipating reading it in the near future. Sarah's blog has been a blessing to me in many ways. I pray that her writing would bless you and encourage you in your daily walk with the Lord. Below are some details about her devotional as well as where you can find her on social media. 


Do you have big goals that seem impossible? Are you ready to step out into fulfilling your dreams but everything seems so overwhelming? In Now: Purposeful Steps Toward a More Abundant Life, Sarah Coller shares practical steps for living a fulfilling life, no matter your life circumstances. This simple devotional offers readers a place to journal thoughts and prayers and is excellent for both individual and small group study.
    About the Author:
Sarah Coller is just a regular girl saved from her sins by the Lord Jesus Christ. Married since 1998 to her high school sweetheart and mother to nine sweet blessings, she stays busy homemaking and homeschooling. Her passion is to create a comfortable and peaceful home for her family. In her free time, she also enjoys reading classic novels, shopping at flea markets, sipping tea, scribbling her thoughts, traveling, and enjoying all things British. Sarah blogs at ClassicalHomemaking.com, as well as at her literature blog, BellesLibrary.com.




You can visit Sarah on her~~


You might find me on these link-ups:


Strangers and Pilgrims on EarthInspire Me MondayLiteracy Musing MondaysThe Modest MomWhat Joy is Mine, Mom's the Word, Rich Faith Rising, Mom's Morning Coffee, Raising Homemakers, Classical HomemakingA Wise Woman Builds Her Home, Woman to Woman Ministries,  Testimony TuesdayTell His Story, Women With Intention WednesdaysMessy Marriage,  Graced Simplicity, Imparting Grace, Thought Provoking ThursdaySoul SurvivalGood Morning MondaysThe Weekend BrewCounting My BlessingsThe HomeAcre Hop, Mommy Moments Link UpGrace and Truth LinkupFaith Filled FridayTell It To Me TuesdaysSHINE Blog HopTGI Saturdays Blog HopRaRaLinkupWord of God SpeakBooknificent ThursdayLiving Proverbs 31Sharing His Beauty Blog LinkupCoffee For Your Heart Weekly LinkUpYou're the Star Blog HopHomesteader HopFresh Market FridayHeart Encouragement Thursday Sitting Among Friends Blog PartyFabulous Warm Heart Party

Monday, February 27, 2017

Monthly Book Giveaway~Humility and Absolute Surrender by Andrew Murray

For more information about Monthly Book Giveaways, click HERE



Anyone who has read Murray understands what a rich source of encouragement his words are. He is both refreshing and challenging--I enjoy him because he brings theology to a practical level and speaks plainly, simply, and sincerely. 

I also enjoy him because one can sense through his writing that his heart was so closely knitted to his Heavenly Father in surrender, submission, trust and obedience. He writes about walking intimately with Christ, on a level that goes far deeper than mere head knowledge or adherence to correct theology alone. 

Murray's heart is one after God's own. And this is expressed through his writing. I pray that someone may benefit greatly through this volume that I am offering--it is a two in one book containing Murray's Humility and Absolute Surrender. I pray that it will bless someone. 

Description of Humility and Absolute Surrender (from CBD)


For over a century countless readers have found in Andrew Murray a trustworthy guide to the deeper Christian life. As a pastor, evangelist, educator, and writer driven by concern for the spiritual guidance of new converts--and for revival in long-time believers--Murray penned some of the most enduring devotional classics of Christian literature. Though he ministered in a deeply-divided nation, his vision seemed blind to race, class, or political persuasion. And from a remote corner of South Africa, his preaching, teaching, and writing would eventually fuel spiritual awakening with a worldwide impact.
This edition pairs Humility and Absolute Surrender in one volume. Together these classics reflect Murray's longing for a closer walk with Christ, and call us to a life of holiness and virtue, empowered not by our own strength but by the indwelling Holy Spirit. 





a Rafflecopter giveaway




You might find me on these link-ups:

Strangers and Pilgrims on EarthInspire Me MondayLiteracy Musing MondaysThe Modest MomWhat Joy is Mine, Mom's the Word, Rich Faith Rising, Mom's Morning Coffee, Raising Homemakers, Classical HomemakingA Wise Woman Builds Her Home, Woman to Woman Ministries,  Testimony TuesdayTell His Story, Women With Intention WednesdaysMessy Marriage,  Graced Simplicity, Imparting Grace, Thought Provoking ThursdaySoul SurvivalGood Morning MondaysThe Weekend BrewCounting My BlessingsThe HomeAcre Hop, Mommy Moments Link UpGrace and Truth LinkupFaith Filled FridayTell It To Me TuesdaysSHINE Blog HopTGI Saturdays Blog HopRaRaLinkupWord of God SpeakBooknificent ThursdayLiving Proverbs 31Sharing His Beauty Blog LinkupCoffee For Your Heart Weekly LinkUpYou're the Star Blog HopHomesteader HopFresh Market FridayHeart Encouragement Thursday Sitting Among Friends Blog PartyFabulous Warm Heart Party


Sunday, February 19, 2017

Getting My Body Back




A very vivid memory from my childhood often comes back to me . . .  my Mom in the kitchen, busy with something, and me wrapping my little girl arms around her soft waist--the love that I felt for my Mom and the certain knowing that she was there for me, that she loved me and constantly gave all of herself to raise me and my sisters. 

Wrapping my arms around that waist that had given--had been stretched and used and worn from giving life to us, to me--her beautiful motherly body that was not tight and firm and toned. 

Something that has had a great effect upon me in my own life has been the way in which my Mom gave everything towards raising her children and walking transparently before the Lord. 

Her devotion to Him came first--I remember her always with her Bible in the morning having her quiet time and seeking the Lord throughout her day, even though it was busy with children. 



And something that had a profound effect upon me was that my Mom's focus was not on her outward appearance, but on her inward relationship to the Lord. This didn't mean that she didn't dress attractively or wear makeup or exercise--my Mom maintained a neat and feminine appearance and exercised when she could. But her focus day in and day out was in giving herself in raising my sisters and I to know and to love the Lord. The other things were secondary and she would quickly forfeit them if it was a choice between her children or her appearance, even to the point of not buying herself new clothing for lengths of time so that she could afford to send us to a Christian school. 

My Mom's focus was on the spiritual and this played into every area of her life. I watched that kind of example growing up. 

I have a personality that craves order and discipline. It's the way that the Lord made me and He has used that for good in my life. But at times, if I am not watchful, it can become a distraction from that deeper more intimate walk with the Lord that my heart truly craves. 

For this reason, I have been very careful in the past with what I ate and making sure that I exercised regularly. I love to walk and so this was an almost daily part of my life, especially before I had children. I consumed broccoli religiously and ate in an otherwise extremely healthy way. 

And then I had children . . . and as anyone who has had children knows, the body goes through extreme changes, both physically and emotionally. 



Both of my births were difficult. I experienced extreme tearing during my first birth and faced a long healing process. My second birth which I chose to do naturally without pain medication took a toll on my body (looking back on that experience I would have chosen to do things differently now, but that is another blog post!) My son was born face down--in posterior position (in the Lord's mercy I delivered him without having a C-section) but my body was physically "broken." Again, I faced a long healing process and couldn't get my body back to normal.

And so, with a "broken" body, I faced caring for two little ones, 18 months apart. 

I struggled. And I just couldn't seem to get my body back into that same pattern of order and discipline that I had maintained before having babies. 

I was nursing, I was weak to the point where I struggled to pick myself up from the floor when I was sitting down with my children. 

And I felt frustrated at times--honestly--frustrated that I just couldn't get my body back--just couldn't fit into my jeans that I wore before I had children. Frustrated that I just couldn't seem to get it under control.

I, me, my body. 

Until the Lord spoke to me, quietly at first, and then with increasing strength--

My work was to focus on the two tiny souls He had given me--to raise to nurture, to love, to enjoy--to train up in His ways.

My work, as He spoke to me strongly one night, was to feed His sheep, and for me, this is to teach my two precious little ones, Deborah and Elisha, to know and to love Him. 

My focus in some ways needed to shift. 

And what I am not saying is that one shouldn't live a disciplined life, exercise, eat healthily, and take care of one's physical body. Our Pastor illustrated this beautifully in a recent sermon--he said that when we place the Lord first, when He is all in all to us, everything else falls into its proper order and place--in other words, through seeking His kingdom first, everything else will be added . . . when we place Him first, everything else falls into place. 

This way of living brings freedom . . . 

The Lord, and it is difficult to describe this completely, but a transformation took place in my heart at one point, replaced my natural motherly care and general love for my children (which I believe that every mother has) with a deep, strong, spiritual love for them. I cannot describe this, but He did. And it has been like a beautiful flower growing in my heart--I love them spiritually and I want them to know Him. 

This has cost me my body. 

The natural part of mothering in childbirth has cost me my body--my body will never look the same again--and it doesn't have to--who are we to hold on to this physical body in a way that rebels against any change to it? 

Are stretch marks and scars really the enemy? Do we need to stress and fuss and fume and desperately grasp at trying everything possible--every trick, gimmick, and exercise technique to get our body back? Again, I am not at all saying that it is wrong to exercise after we have children (I still enjoy walking, only now I do it with my children!)--what I am trying to say is that when getting our body back becomes the focus, we have lost something of spiritual significance--the willingness to give even if it means that we can't maintain the "perfect" body. The focus is "off" when we cling to the notion that we need to be a certain weight or a certain size in order to be content instead of resting in the Lord and concentrating on His present will for our lives. Perhaps the real enemy is holding onto something that we need to be willing to let go of. 



Our body is given in order to give it back--because it always comes down to surrender--whether or not we are willing to give something lesser for the greater--just as Jesus did. 

For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich. II Corinthians 8:9 NKJV

To give back spiritually --we give our body spiritually when we sacrifice what we could have had in order to give to another--a "perfect" body for the stretches and scars of motherhood, our time, our passions, our lives--for the life of another--for the lives of little ones, for the Lord's sake. 

There is a character  in one of my sister's novels, The House of Mercy who would have been physically handsome except for the fact that his face bears a garish scar. He is one of my favorite characters, even more than the hero in that novel. A deeply sensitive man, he marries a woman who became pregnant out of wedlock and takes her child as his own. He is a beautiful example of Christ-like love and his face and very life bear deep sorrows, wounds and scars. 

Sometimes scars, imperfections, can be things of great beauty--can actually draw rather than repel. 

Jesus was scarred--He bore the scars of the nail prints in His hands--nail prints of love and evidence of a body broken. Broken for us. His body was used for our benefit. We follow His example when we give our bodies for the sake of our children, or even for the sake of spiritual children, such as missionaries whose bodies have been broken down by years of fasting and toil and ministry. It is worth it



I remember hugging my Mom's waist, her selfless, Christ-like giving and I remember that ancient truth that burns in the heart when we embrace it--we receive when we give. We possess when we let go. He who seeks to save his life will lose it but he who loses his life for My sake will truly possess it. 

And this is how I have gotten my body back. 



You might find me on these link-ups:


Strangers and Pilgrims on EarthInspire Me MondayLiteracy Musing MondaysThe Modest MomWhat Joy is Mine, Mom's the Word, Rich Faith Rising, Mom's Morning Coffee, Raising Homemakers, Classical HomemakingA Wise Woman Builds Her Home, Woman to Woman Ministries,  Testimony TuesdayTell His Story, Women With Intention WednesdaysMessy Marriage,  Graced Simplicity, Imparting Grace, Thought Provoking ThursdaySoul SurvivalGood Morning MondaysThe Weekend BrewCounting My BlessingsThe HomeAcre Hop, Mommy Moments Link UpGrace and Truth LinkupFaith Filled FridayTell It To Me TuesdaysSHINE Blog HopTGI Saturdays Blog HopRaRaLinkupWord of God SpeakBooknificent ThursdayLiving Proverbs 31Sharing His Beauty Blog LinkupCoffee For Your Heart Weekly LinkUpYou're the Star Blog HopHomesteader HopFresh Market FridayHeart Encouragement Thursday Sitting Among Friends Blog Party

Sunday, February 5, 2017

A Romantic Giveaway!!!

Until the will and the affections are brought under the authority of Christ, we have not begun to understand, let alone accept, His Lordship. The Cross, as it enters the love life, will reveal the heart’s truth.
~Elisabeth Elliot

In the spirit of Valentine's Day and to close my blog series on Marriage, I am so excited to host . . . 
A Romantic Giveaway! 
💗💗💗💗💗💗💗💗💗💗💗


This is something that I've been looking forward to for a long time 😊. I've been gathering together some resources and fun "romantic" items that I hope you'll enjoy and including them as part of the giveaway. Please feel free to share about this giveaway with your friends; let's "spread the love." (Haha; my attempt to joke :-)). 💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💗


If you are new to this blog, or haven't read my Marriage Series blog posts and would like to, you can find them here--

Introduction HERE,
Part 1 HERE  
Part 2 HERE 
Part 3 HERE
Part 4 HERE
Part 5 HERE
Part 6 HERE





I hope and pray that this giveaway would bless someone and that the Lord Jesus would lead each of us into a deeper and deeper love for Him. 

Here's what it includes:

  • A paperback copy of Ravi Zacharias' book I, Isaac, Take Thee, Rebekah (this is a wonderful, encouraging book on this topic)
  • The DVD, Old Fashioned  (you can read my review HERE) :-)
  • A very lovely lace scarf (this reminded me of Anne of Green Gables :-)). 
  • "I have loved you with an everlasting love" rose mug. 
  • Beautiful rose and pearl earrings  (well, I think so!)


Please enter the giveaway by using the Rafflecopter form below; it is very easy to use. 

The Lord bless each one of you and cause the light of His great love to brighten your path. 

*Giveaway open to residents of the continental United States for shipping reasons. 





You might find me on these link-ups:


Strangers and Pilgrims on EarthInspire Me MondayLiteracy Musing MondaysThe Modest MomWhat Joy is Mine, A Mama's Story, Mom's the Word, Rich Faith Rising, Cornerstone Confessions, Mom's Morning Coffee, Raising Homemakers, Classical HomemakingA Wise Woman Builds Her Home, Woman to Woman Ministries,  Testimony TuesdayTell His Story, Women With Intention WednesdaysMessy Marriage,  Graced Simplicity, Children Are A Blessing, Imparting Grace, Thought Provoking ThursdaySoul SurvivalGood Morning MondaysThe Weekend BrewCounting My BlessingsThe HomeAcre Hop, Mommy Moments Link UpGrace and Truth LinkupFaith Filled FridayTell It To Me TuesdaysSHINE Blog HopTGI Saturdays Blog HopRaRaLinkupWord of God SpeakBooknificent ThursdayLiving Proverbs 31Sharing His Beauty Blog LinkupCoffee For Your Heart Weekly LinkUpYou're the Star Blog HopHomesteader HopFresh Market FridayHeart Encouragement Thursday Sitting Among Friends Blog Party

Sunday, January 29, 2017

A Knife Dipped in Blood~~The Deadly Peril of Pornography

This post is part of a series of posts on marriage/relationships. I pray that this "mini-series" would be a blessing to you! Please feel free to share any of your own thoughts in the comments; I would love to hear them! 


If you are new to this series, you can find the Introduction HERE, Part 1 HERE , Part 2 HERE, Part 3 HERE, Part 4 HERE., and Part 5 HERE.

Please Note: This post contains adult material that is not suitable for children. 


We use a most unfortunate idiom when we say, of a lustful man prowling the streets, that he “wants a woman.” Strictly speaking, a woman is just what he does not want.
He wants a pleasure for which a woman happens to be the necessary piece of apparatus. How much he cares about the woman as such may be gauged by his attitude to her five minutes after fruition (one does not keep the carton after one has smoked the cigarettes).
Now Eros makes a man really want, not a woman, but one particular woman. In some mysterious but quite indisputable fashion the lover desires the Beloved herself, not the pleasure she can give.
~C.S. Lewis
Lust is a poor, weak, whimpering, whispering thing compared with that richness and energy of desire which will arise when lust has been killed.
~C.S. Lewis

I can still remember a sermon I heard years ago from Dr. Charles Swindoll. I was listening to the local Christian radio station in the car and I had pulled into the driveway. He was talking about the danger of pornography. An image that he used cut into my soul in a way that made me shudder. I don't remember all of the specifics of the sermon, but one description stayed with me. He carefully depicted the way in which (I think that perhaps it was the Eskimos) would dip a knife in blood in order to kill a wolf. They would cover the blade in the scarlet substance, and then place the razor-sharp edge sticking up out of the snow. The wolf, hungry, would smell the blood and begin licking the knife. Eventually, as you can imagine, his own tongue would be cut and he would begin to lick his own blood without realizing it. In this way, he would feed on his own blood, ultimately bleeding to death and perishing in the bitter cold. 

Swindoll then went on to relate this story to the manner in which pornography slowly weakens and then kills the soul. 



Pornography. We think that it will feed us, satisfy us. But instead of nourishing, it actually accomplishes the opposite. It drains us of all that is true and pure and good. 

Sometimes it seems so innocent. A little taste here; a lick there. Until the stream begins to flow and we are strangling on our own blood. 

Pornography destroys. It crushes. We think that it is giving satisfaction, but it is really robbing us of that which is truly life-giving.

We live in a time when it is looked upon so lightly, laughed off, even--Oh, every man struggles with that--

But I believe that in not adopting a more serious attitude toward this sin, we weaken ourselves, we weaken our marriages, we weaken the church as a whole, and we become unfit for ministry in any way. 

We need to take pornography seriously. We need to kill lust in our lives before it kills us, before it kills our families, before it kills our souls and sears our conscience until it is dead. 



Our families are at stake. Our marriages are at stake. Our souls are at stake. 

You have heard that it was said to those of old,‘You shall not commit adultery.’But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell. (Matthew 5:27-29 NKJV)

 Flee sexual immorality. Every sin that a man does is outside the body, but he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body. Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s. (I Corinthians 6:18-20 NKJV)

We may so weaken the voice of the Spirit in this area that we will be rendered spiritually useless. I believe that this happens in many men's lives (as well as women's) and this is one of the reasons that the Church is so powerless and ineffective today. 


These are three ways that I believe pornography damages and destroys and then ultimately kills the soul--I am sure that there are more--

It damages our marriages

Pornography kills romance. It deadens our own souls against the soul of our spouse. I know that some may disagree with me, but I believe that viewing pornography when one is married is quietly committing adultery against their partner. This is why the Bible exhorts us to "flee immorality." Because it is so grievously damaging. Besides hurting ourselves, it also wounds the ones we claim to love. The late Pastor Adrian Rogers said that once a man breaks trust with his wife in his marriage, it may take years to repair the breach because a woman's emotions are so sensitive. Many men feel that pornography is no big deal and that women just need to get over it. But I believe that it may be difficult even after the woman has genuinely forgiven her husband, to  easily "get over" her husband's actions. The sting of his deception and betrayal may remain for years and make it difficult for her to relate to her husband sexually or in other ways. This is one of the consequences of "soft" adultery. 

It damages our relationship with God

Pornography immediately places a barrier in terms of our relationship with God. The more that we view it and engage in practices associated with it, the more our hearts are hardened, our consciences are seared, and we deaden the voice of the Holy Spirit. 

It damages the church as a whole

Because we are weakened spiritually when we engage in viewing pornography, the church as a whole suffers. There is sin "in the camp," and so the church cannot go forward spiritually. I truly believe that this is one of the reasons for the weakness of the American church--unconfessed sin that is taken lightly and is causing our souls to rot in the blazing sun. Only true repentance and turning away from sin will bring cleansing and revival. 
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Lust needs to be killed in our lives, not stroked gently, not hidden away and then taken back out, not ignored, but killed. 

Ultimately, feeding on lust shows that we are seeking satisfaction outside of Christ. We are discontent and that discontentment flows into the utter selfishness of taking that which promises to fill our deepest need. 

We are empty and so we seek a temporary fix. We fill our souls with poison and refuse the Great Physician who would heal us if we would only run to Him, run to the Self-Giving One who alone can satisfy us.

I speak mostly to men, but I know that there are also women who struggle in this area. 

I'd like to add a note here--the answer to a man's problem with pornography is not ultimately that his wife needs to fulfill him more sexually. It is true that a woman is biblically constrained  to join together with her husband (I Corinthians 7:3-5). It is also true that this becomes a joy when her husband treats her with gentleness and loves her as Christ loves the church and that it becomes a painful act of obedience when she is not treated that way. 

A man's problem with pornography is not ultimately the failing of his wife, but the failing of his own disobedience and failure to resist evil through the power of the Holy Spirit.



We need to take responsibility for our own actions and stop placing the blame on someone else--stop using someone else's perceived disobedience to give us an excuse to continue sinning. And we do this when we blame our wives (or husbands) for our sin when we feel that they are failing to fulfill us sexually. 

What we need is not an attitude of making excuses and of indulging the flesh, but an attitude of cutting off that which is causing us to sin. 

There is a scene in the movie Fireproof where the main character Caleb, uses a baseball bat to destroy his computer. He is struggling with pornography and realizes that he needs to get rid of that which is causing him to stumble.  His wife is not fulfilling him sexually (which he gives earlier as one of his excuses for looking at pornography). But then Caleb turns to the Lord in repentance and begins to treat his wife in a loving, sincere, and gentle way. It takes time because he has wounded her so deeply, but eventually his wife responds to him and their love is rekindled. 

There are times when we need to "cut off our hand," and nothing is too radical if it is causing our relationship with Jesus Christ to suffer and our soul to wither and die. 

Do you struggle with pornography? Repent, turn to the Lord and He will give you the strength to overcome it. 

I have read articles that talk about how the pornographic images that a man or woman sees may never be erased because of the chemicals that seeing these images triggers. 

I believe that this is true, hence the peril of exposing oneself to these images--but I also believe that the Lord is able to miraculously redeem all things and to remove our sins as far as the east is from the west. 

I believe that the Lord is able to refresh and restore marriages, hearts, and consciences that are seared when we turn to Him and turn away from that which is destroying our souls. He is able to redeem. He will redeem. 

So turn to Him. Turn away from the darkness and deception of self fulfillment and let your fulfillment be found in the Person of Jesus Christ. 

He is able to do exceedingly, abundantly above all that we ask or think. He can cleanse and purify. And He will--to those who run to Him. 




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This was a helpful article for further reading (clickable link).



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