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Worship

08/30/2013 - Author: Jennifer

Every Friday, Lisa-Jo Baker over at Tales from a Gypsy Mama gives us a word and a challenge. To write for 5 minutes without abandon. It is fun and I encourage you to try it. Here we go! The word is…

WORSHIP

Right now, I am going through some tough stuff. Right now, being a wife and mom is harder than I could have imagined. I have cried and sobbed and pleaded with God in my closet. At the same time, I am asking Him “what is the point? Why do I bother asking/pleading with You? You are going to do what You are going to do. You are going to do what is best.” ( Psalm 116:2) I struggle sometimes worshipping God simply for who He is. I forget that His value doesn’t change. I don’t like my circumstances right now, but that shouldn’t matter. God is God and because He loves me, sent Jesus to save me, THAT is enough to worship.

I am learning that I need to give unconditional love, forgiveness, and support because of my trials I am going through right now. I am reminded that even though I don’t like what God is doing or allowing, worship should not be conditional. Worship needs to come from my heart, not my head or how I feel about my circumstances.

It is hard. I am struggling. I am relying on His grace.

Be blessed:)

Five Minute Friday

12 Comments - Categories: Uncategorized

Being Obedient To Be Refined

08/15/2013 - Author: Jennifer

I have wrote about my marriage and how hard it is. Nothing new there, right? However, when asked about radical obedience, I have to pause. Staying in my marriage shouldn’t be about radical obedience. I feel as if I have given up so much and I don’t want to give up anymore of my dreams and desires. However, I feel that is what I am being asked to do. Again. Radical obedience. Past choices on my husband’s and my part have led us here. I feel I am in a prison of consequences and unhappiness, but I have to believe that God still has better for me if I start saying yes to Him, listen to Him, and allow Him to use what bad I have done for my good and His glory. That is going to take radical obedience.

I am learning is that I have not loved my husband enough. I am not saying that I caused him to hurt me. I am not saying that it is my fault that he made the choices he made, or even the excuses he tried to provide me. I am not excusing him for what he has done and the hurt and humiliation he has caused me. What I am saying is that I am learning  that my love for my husband has been conditional. If Matt wouldn’t do this or that, then loving him would be easy. Maybe so, but it isn’t the love God has called you and me to show to His children. I have to love unconditionally~~ that shows I am His child and that I know Him (1 John 4:7-8).  Right now, I am in the midst of hurt and yet, I feel numb. (That scares me). I am married as an act of obedience to my vows and to my God. Honestly, I can’t say I FEEL love for him. I don’t feel that I am CHOOSING to love either.

Is God using this for me to be refined? To be better? To love my husband more? To love through the hurt and humiliation? I think He might. Maybe I need to allow Him to~~ to open up my heart and let Him heal.  Yes, I know Jesus loved through hurt and humiliation (and still loves us like nobody else can). To answer question 4 from Chapter 2 of What Happens When Women Say Yes to God by Lysa TerKeurst ~~ YES~~this is beyond me. Maybe I should be embarrassed to admit, but allowing God to do a work in me and not giving up on my marriage seems to be radical obedience on my part. (Side note~~ I am NOT talking abuse or dangerous situations. I am not talking about people having affairs without remorse).

I have also had a Say What? moment. For now, since I still don’t know if it is me or Him and I am waiting to see what happens and keeping it to myself.  If it is Him, I am going to say yes! If it is me, then please God, don’t allow me to do act on it.

Be blessed:)

P31 OBS Blog Hop

31 Comments - Categories: Uncategorized

Lonely

- Author: Jennifer

Every Friday, Lisa-Jo Baker over at Tales from a Gypsy Mama gives us a word and a challenge. To write for 5 minutes without abandon. It is fun and I encourage you to try it. Here we go! The word is…

LONELY

When you relocate, it can be hard. I miss my friends. I miss the community I was a part of. It feels like it will never get better. Years go by without making new friends and not feeling like I belong or something is wrong with me. I had no issues finding community, so what is wrong with me?

I became a mom. Oddly enough, that felt more lonely. I was in constant company with this new little man, but I still was missing conversations with adults. Being lonely was scary for me.

I think that I should have done better. I should have done more than ask God for friends~~ I should have asked Him what He wants from me. What do You want me to learn? How could I have grown if I sought after Him and used this time of loneliness? He was always there. He is still here and I treasure community and friends more now than I did.

Be blessed:)

Five Minute Friday

7 Comments - Categories: Uncategorized

My Selfishness Holds Me Back

08/08/2013 - Author: Jennifer

As part of an online study, I was asked to reflect on Deuteronomy 6:5~~ And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength. (NLT) Guess what I was reminded of? This is a command. The word must makes it a command. Ummm….ouch. I have failed. A LOT! Thank God for grace.  So why don’t I follow this command? What is holding me back? Why have I not been willing? Why am I so selfish?

  • Excuses~~ It is too hard. It may hurt. Not enough time. I need to put my family first (doesn’t that sound good)?
  • I want to fit in~~ I hate it when someone doesn’t like me or I feel left out. (I really need to get over this and gain self-confidence).
  • Fear~~ Does God really want me to do this? Am I hearing this right or is it my selfish desires telling me to act upon something?
  • Someone else can do it better. (Again with the self-confidence).
  • I don’t want to~~ I want to do something else. I only have this one life, and I want to be selfish with my time.
  • I don’t have what it takes. My lack of faith wins with this argument. I am saying I don’t believe He will give me energy, knowledge, etc. to do what He has called me to do.

What have I missed by only going halfway and not completely serving Him?  Have I not grown/matured as much as I could? How many times have I said no instead of yes that I have not allowed His light to shine and allowed Him to be seen? How  often have I not let God do what is best for me because I only serve Him half-heartedly? How many people have I not served because I was disobedient by not following His command in Deuteronomy 6:5? What are those numbers? Do I really want to know? Have I missed more blessings?

So how can I serve God with all my heart? What do I need to do? One area is in my relationships. I need to forgive. I need to be a better listener. I need to not judge. I need to not expect perfection. Accept that there will be hurt from me and done to me. Don’t hold a grudge. Love more. This can be part of how I serve Him~~ by loving others with a desire to show Jesus.

What is holding me back? Fear. Fear of unknown. Fear of not hearing Him. Fear of messing up. Fear of consequences. Fear of others. Fear of not knowing if I am doing it the right way/His way. Sometimes, it doesn’t happen the way I thought it would/take a different route, but it does happen the way it needs to if I let God do the driving.

I need to read the Bible less and STUDY it more. There is a difference. I need to take it in. Think about His words and what He is saying. There is no way I have what it takes, but I do have God and He promises to give me what I need. Elijah is proof of that in 1 Kings 17. Hebrews 13:21 also says it:

may He equip you with all you need
    for doing His will.
May He produce in you,
    through the power of Jesus Christ,
every good thing that is pleasing to Him.
    All glory to Him forever and ever! Amen. (NLT) 

I need to make it about HIM and not about ME.

Be blessed:)

P31 OBS Blog Hop

6 Comments - Categories: Uncategorized

After the Conference, during the Devotionals

08/05/2013 - Author: Jennifer

For many years, I thought that you only attended a marriage conference, read marriage books, etc. when your marriage was in trouble. Then, I thought that if you read the books and put into practice what you read, that you wouldn’t have those same issues. Your marriage would be stronger. I never thought that you cold do those things when marriage was good. Attending and doing those things were a sign that your marriage was bad. A bad sign.

I didn’t know that you could attend/do those things when things were good and to help your marriage. I didn’t know books and conferences could maybe help prevent bad or even worsening things to happen in your marriage. I never saw them as a way to protect my marriage. I certainly did not know times would get harder. I thought you only fought when you disagreed what was being said, not an attack from the enemy.

Well, I am learning that conferences can help a good or bad marriage and that times will get hard if effort is being put forth. Not just because change is hard, but because Satan doesn’t like strong marriages, especially when a husband and wife work as a team by seeking God and studying His Word together.

So, I caution you—your marriage may get harder and you may fight more., but please DO NOT LET SATAN WIN. Fight the good fight.

As a side note, I don’t believe this applies only to marriages. I believe this can happen in your workplace, parenting, etc. My marriage is just one area that I am fighting for.

Be blessed:)

3 Comments - Categories: Uncategorized

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