Dear Younger Kim, (#3) Respect Your Husband

july-4-2000-bill-with-emily-and-nickThis series is in response to the question:

So if you met yourself when your kids were as young as mine (4 and 1), what would you tell her?

If you haven’t read Part One in this series, click here.

Here’s my third nugget for myself:

Dear Kim,

Do you see that young man in that picture? He’s just as confused and lost as you are.  Be patient with him, Kim.  Pray for him, sister.  Encourage him and love on him.

I wish I could stop there, but I’ve got to keep going.  The word of God is for our training in righteousness that we could be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

You might want to get a cup of coffee and sit down.  You might want to pray and hold my hand before we dive in here.  This is going to be a hard one to hear.  This is an area where I’m still doing battle almost every single day.  But, I have a feeling that if we’d started on this a long time ago, this battle now wouldn’t be quite so hard.

… let the wife see that she respects her husband. (Ephesians 5:33)

Kim, your relationship with your husband needs to be rooted deep in respect and reverence.  As hard as this is for you to hear and as much as you want to fight against it, this is the truth.  Indeed, you will well learn over the years, that there is indeed a way that seems right to a man (or a woman), but its end is the way to death (Proverbs 14:12 & Proverbs 16:25).  This is one of those ways.

There are going to be many, many times when you think you know better, when you think you’re right, (and in fact, you may at times be right), but in the midst of that battle, you have got to reverence your husband.  Admire him.  Honor him.  Respect him.  Listen to him.  Be quick to listen and slow to speak and slow to anger (James 1:19-20).  Know this: it is the fool who delights in expressing his opinion, rather than in understanding (Proverbs 18:2).  Yes, there may be the rare occasion when you might have to go against his wishes, but this will be the extreme exception and not the rule.

I’m not telling you to put him on some kind of pedestal or to make him some kind of an idol, taking the place of your allegiance to the one true God.  No.  Remember, you’re going to be trusting in the Lord with all your heart and not leaning on your own understanding.  Remember, you’re going to be praying with thanksgiving and making your requests known to God.

And as you do that, God will turn his heart as only He is able (Proverbs 21:1).

God will not share His glory with another (Isaiah 48:11).

Think of the story of Gideon leading the Israelites in battle against the Midianites.  In Judges 7:2, The Lord said to Gideon.

“The people with you are too many for me to give the Midianites into their hand, lest Israel boast over me, saying, ‘My own hand has saved me.’

The Lord cut down the army of the Israelites from 22,000 strong down to 300!  In the Israelites’ victory, there could be no doubt that God Himself had saved them.

Kim, don’t steal God’s glory but manipulating and nagging and cold-shouldering (is that a word?) your husband into submitting to your wishes.  God is most glorified as you are still and let Him fight your battles for you (Exodus 14:14).

Trust me.  No, Trust GOD.  Remember, trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge HIM and He will direct your paths.

TWIG

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Dear Younger Kim (#2), Don’t be anxious

me-with-nick-and-emily-2000This series is in response to the question:

So if you met yourself when your kids were as young as mine (4 and 1), what would you tell her?

If you haven’t read Part One in this series, click here.

So, here comes my second nugget for myself:

Dear Kim,

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. (Philippians 4:6)

As you trust the Lord with all your heart, the next step is going to be doing battle against fear and anxiety.  This must begin by taking captive those fearful, anxious thoughts that run through your mind.  Those angry thoughts about what the future holds if you don’t “get this child under control,” were not given to you by your good, loving Father.  Those thoughts come from the pit of hell.

When those ideas first come into your mind, you are going to need to choose to pray.  Remember, Worry NONE, Pray ALWAYS.  You are going to have to choose to cast all of your anxieties onto God, trusting that He cares for you. (1 Peter 5:7).  Throw those fears onto Him.  Cast them off your back and out of your mind, and give them over to God, who knows  is sovereign over all things.  Make your requests known to Him with a thankful heart filled with trust.

Remember, Kim, all His works are right and all His ways are just and those who walk in pride, He is able to humble (Daniel 4:37).  When you start to worry, you are taking on burdens that you were never meant to carry.  Your fears are rooted in pride, thinking too highly of yourself, and not highly enough of our all-powerful, all-knowing, all-loving God.  Don’t forget that He loves you and will supply your every need according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:19).  Believe that “He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?” (Romans 8:32)

I look at this picture of you in the pumpkin patch with the big smile on your face and I think of all the worries that are hidden behind there.  The search for the perfect pumpkins and the perfect pictures, and what people think of your screaming toddler, and I just want to encourage you.  One day you will look back at all those wasted moments that could have been filled with joy and laughter and think, “What was I worrying about?”

Worry NONE.  Pray ALWAYS.

TWIG

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A foolish woman? or a wise one

The wisest of women builds her house, but folly with her own hands tears it down. Proverbs 14:1 (ESV)

Matthew Henry’s commentary on Proverbs 14:1 reads,
A good wife is a great blessing to a family. By a fruitful wife a family is multiplied and replenished with children, and so built up. But by a prudent wife, one that is pious, industrious, and considerate, the affairs of the family are made to prosper, debts are paid, portions raised, provision made, the children well educated and maintained, and the family has comfort within doors and credit without; thus is the house built. She looks upon it as her own to take care of, though she knows it is her husband’s to bear rule in, Esth. 1:22. 2. Many a family is brought to ruin by ill housewifery, as well as by ill husbandry. A foolish woman, that has no fear of God nor regard to her business, that is wilful, and wasteful, and humoursome, that indulges her ease and appetite, and is all for jaunting and feasting, cards and the play-house, though she come to a plentiful estate, and to a family beforehand, she will impoverish and waste it, and will as certainly be the ruin of her house as if she plucked it down with her hands; and the husband himself, with all his care, can scarcely prevent it.

When I read Proverbs 14:1 this afternoon, it got me to thinking about the passage in Matthew 7 about the wise man who built his house on the rock, versus the foolish man who built it on the sand. In looking up that passage, I came across the similar, though less well-known, passage in Luke.

“Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do what I tell you? Everyone who comes to me and hears my words and does them, I will show you what he is like: he is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. And when a flood arose, the stream broke against that house and could not shake it, because it had been well built. But the one who hears and does not do them is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation. When the stream broke against it, immediately it fell, and the ruin of that house was great.” Luke 6:46-49

The wise man builds his house on the firm foundation of the rock, obeying God’s Word, so when the storms of life come, his house stands. The foolish man builds his house on the sand. He does not trouble himself to dig down to the solid foundation. He cannot be troubled to obey God’s words. When the storms of life come, his house falls.

Yet, consider this, the foolish woman of Proverbs 14:1 is tearing down her OWN house with her OWN hands. She doesn’t need any storms to tear it down! She is tearing it down herself. She, also, is doing that by hearing these words of Jesus and DOING them.

I pray that as I go in and out today that I will spend my days building my house, not tearing it down.

Happy Birthday, Bill

Proverbs 31:11-12
“The heart of her husband trusts in her, and he will have no lack of gain. She does him good, and not harm, all the days of her life.”

1 Peter 3:5-6
“For this is how the holy women who hoped in God used to adorn themselves, by submitting to their own husbands, as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord. And you are her children, if you do good and do not fear anything that is frightening.”

We had a great time celebrating Bill’s birthday including an amazing 3-hour dinner at Melting Pot. Yum! Emily baked a delicious cake shaped like a giant coffee mug. How cool is that?

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Happy Birthday, honey! You are a blessing from The Lord to me. I praise His name for giving me you to be my husband. You make me more than I would be without you.