Tuesday, November 28, 2006
Monday, November 27, 2006
UPDATE: Anyone who stopped by & read the most recent posts and wanted to comment, I got help from a fellow blogger who showed me how to go back & turn on the last two posts. You can now post comments on any of the old ones, or use this. Thanks everyone & I'll be posting again tonight or tomorrow.
Sunday, November 26, 2006
Saturday, November 25, 2006
We've had a sprinkling of snow at our new house site the last couple of days, with several inches forecast for Monday or Tuesday. It's apt to slow down the application of the siding and other outside work, but thankfully we'll be ready for insulation in another week & work can progress inside.
I've been promising the second part in the post on Women vs Men, the differences, so here it is... and I'll be posting more on marriage later. Please keep checking back & please pass the link to this site on to your friends!
John Gray, "Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus", HarperCollins Publishers, New York
Men value power, competency, efficiency and achievement; looking to prove themselves, develop power and skills. "Their sense of self is defined through their ability to achieve results." More interested in "objects" and "things" rather than people and feelings. Achieving goals is very important - to prove competency. Rarely talk is about his problems unless he needs expert advice. When his wife talks about problems he is quick to offer advice, to solve the problem, to fix it.
Women value love, communication, beauty, relationships. Spend time supporting, nurturing. Sense of self defined through their feelings and the quality of their relationships which are more important than work and technology. Intuitive, anticipating the needs of others. For women the sign of love is to offer help without being asked.
For men, the offer of help suggests he isn't competent, she doesn't trust him to do it himself. "For women, offering advice and construction is an act of love."
Men feel better solving problems. Women feel better talking about problems.
When men are under stress, they tend to want to be alone, to think about how they can solve their problem. When a women is stressed, she wants to talk it out; talking about the problems causes her to feel better.
When a woman talks to a man about her problems he feels she is holding him responsible. When a man doesn't talk about his problems his wife feels he is ignoring or rejecting her.
Men need to know they are needed. Women need to know they are cherished.
Women express feelings, men communicate information.
Men need trust, acceptance, appreciation, admiration, approval, and encouragement.
Women need caring, understanding, respect, devotion, validation, and reassurance.
Men typically handle arguments with "Fight" and "Flight" - intimidation or become silent; women with "Fake" and "Fold" - pretend there's no problem, or take all the responsibility for it.
Men think they score big points with big gifts; women score all gifts the same.
Women intuitively feel the needs of others and expect men to do the same.
Wednesday, November 22, 2006
Poor Tom, Trying To Sleep and Smoke, Ever the Pest!
One of my cats is snuggled on my lap, trying to sleep while I busily type. Poor Thomas, he'll give up soon and hop down, and I'll head to bed. But I wanted to join you for a moment & try to catch up a little.
This is such a busy time of year! I'm sure you're in the same fix...rushing around, baking pies & getting the house ready for company during the holiday season. Too many days have gone by since I've taken the time to chat with you here. I'll try to post more again tomorrow evening, after we return from my mother's, where our grown kids will join us, along with my 97 year old Grandmother.
The pies are all baked (pumpkin and apple this year) and I'm happily tired, looking forward to a nice day with family. We'd planned on meeting at our home, but it's harder for my grandmother to navigate, so we changed to my mother's. I'm a bit relieved, as it meant less cleaning for me today!
For you ladies who have husbands or men in your life who are interested in inventions...or are fascinated with alternative sources of energy that could change the way we look at fuel, keep your eyes open over the next week. I'll be sharing a bit about a new invention my husband and his partner built, that is patented & going to hit the market soon. It deals with bio mass---alternative energy, and we already have some large corporations looking at it with interest.
For you ladies who might enjoy trying new types of cosmetics, here's a little commercial for you...a tidbit of info that I haven't shared before. Have any of you have ever heard of Catherine Hickland (soap opera star)? She started a cosmetic company called Cat Cosmetics (not for cats, but named after her nickname), an awesome line of make-up that I use exclusively. I'm the only authorized retailer they allow to sell on ebay & one of the only ones who sell online, apart from them. I always offer friends and family a good discount...so ladies, that means YOU! Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you'd like a catalog, or would like more information on prices and products. I'm always happy to send tiny color samples too, just for the price of postage & packaging, or totally free with any order.
I'll get back to my subject of Men vs Women, and the differences and needs, in my next post. I'd love to hear from some of you that come back to visit here. Please leave a comment, let me know what you think of the blog so far, or tell me the type of things you'd like to know more about... or drop me an email if you're shy about posting. And check back with me often, I'll try to stay on a schedule of no less than 2-3 posts per week, more if I have time!
Hugs and Happy Thanksgiving!!!
Sunday, November 19, 2006
It's evident to any individual involved in a marriage or close relationship with someone of the opposite sex, that vast differences abound. But what exactly are they, and how can we utilize that knowledge? Take a look at the following overview and see if it helps shed some light on your own situation.
Willard F.Harley, Jr., "His Needs, Her Needs", Fleming H. Revell Company, Tarrytown
Man's five most basic needs in marriage:
1. Sexual fulfillment
2. Recreational companionship
3. An attractive spouse
4. Domestic support
Woman's five most basic needs in marriage:
3. Honesty and openness
4. Financial support
5. Family commitment
Concerning sexuality: men experience arousal and climax with relative ease; for women it's just the opposite.
THE IRRESTIBLE MAN
1. He meets her need for affection with plenty of hugs and kisses at every opportunity.
2. He meets her need for intimate conversation by talking with her at the feeling level.
3. He meets her need for honesty and openness by looking her in the eye and telling her what he really thinks.
4. He meets her need for financial support by firmly shouldering the responsibility to house, feed, and clothe his family.
5. He meets her need for family commitment by putting his family first. He commits his time and energy to the moral and intellectual development of his children.
THE IRRESTIBLE WOMAN
1. She meets his need for sexual fulfillment by becoming an excellent sexual partner to him.
2. She meets his need for recreational companionship by developing mutual interests with her husband.
3. She meets his need for her attractiveness. She keeps herself physically fit with diet and exercise, and she wears her hair, makeup, and clothes in a way that her husband finds attractive and tasteful.
4. She meets his need for domestic support by creating a home that offers him an atmosphere of peace and quiet.
5. She meets his need for admiration and respect by understanding his value and achievements more than anyone else.
---------End of quote---------
We can all learn from the second section....how to be irresistible to our mate. Do you want to meet please your husband or wife? Then take seriously the needs of your partner and learn what he or she needs to be more complete. As you endeavor to meet their needs, you'll be amazed at how willing they will be to meet yours. Giving never ceases to have it's own rewards. The Word wasn't just talking about finances when it states that we're to give, pressed down, shaking together, and running over, and men shall give back unto us. That's a promise from the God of heaven, and His promises always hold true!
Saturday, November 18, 2006
The operation of the revelation gifts can help us make Godly decisions in our daily walk. If we are being used in counseling others, a word of wisdom or knowledge can shorten what might otherwise be hours of ministry. 1 Corinthians 14:1, it says that we should “‘Follow the way of love and eagerly desire spiritual gifts, especially the gift of prophecy.”
We need to follow hard after God and desire to be used, keeping our hearts open to whatever gift He might want to bestow on us. Whether it be the prophetic gifts or any other, we must operate in an attitude of love. God seeks people who are anxious to hear His voice and use His gifts in ministry to others, while continually bringing glory to Him.
Waiting on God’s peace and assurance before making decisions and confirming that what you are hearing corresponds with His written word is critical. Take time to hear from God in the still, small voice of your spirit, through direct inspiration from the Word, or asking Him to speak to you through one of the Gifts of the Spirit. Avail yourself of the wisdom of the pastor, elders, or other people in your church who have proven themselves to be Godly men and women. Seek their counsel as you wait on the Lord, combining their wisdom with God’s word, and making sure it also corresponds with God’s Word.
Are you content to hear God’s voice only through the voice of others, or do you want to hear His voice for yourself? If so, will you pay the price He requires to make hearing His voice a way of life? Romans 8:6 says, “The mind of sinful man is death, but the mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace.” It takes time and commitment to learn to listen; time quietly waiting on the Lord, as well as dwelling in His Word.
God is more willing to speak to us than we are to hear, and He will be faithful to answer as we tune our hearts in to His.
Thursday, November 16, 2006
The Lord provided an answer this past week, for two families at a time. We purchased an older 38' 5th wheel, well used but in very sound condition, a few months ago. Our plan? Park it on our new property & move into it as soon as our house we're living in sells.
The second family is one from our church. A man & his wife in their late 60's, with a grown son who is autistic. This couple is one of the most generous, giving couples we know...always doing for others in an unobtrusive, quiet way, not expecting thanks or pay. Recently he had a stroke... his second in two years. As a result, he had to give up his wood cutting business that supplemented their meager retirement income. The result? They had to move out of their modest home & lease it out, as they couldn't afford the payments. We wanted to loan them our 5th wheel, as they'd recently moved into a very old, leaky 20' trailer. (we had no idea how bad it was until today)...but didn't know where we'd live should our house suddenly sell, as our new one won't be ready to move into until sometime in March, at the earliest.
A week or so ago we got word through our daughter that a couple she knows are heading south for the winter. They know we might need a place to live, and offered their home for the winter. We immediately contacted the family from our church & convinced them we needed the trailer moved off our property, as it truly is giving us very limited parking for the construction crew. It went to it's new home this week and we couldn't have been happier to see it in the possession of such deserving people. The Lord knew from the beginning that the 5th wheel belonged to this family! He met our need and theirs, in just the right way. Isn't He awesome!
Our house hasn't sold yet, and the market is very slow, but we're trusting Him to sell it at just the right time.
Now....for the second installment on prayer~
Any time we believe that we've heard from the Lord, whether through someone else’s teaching, a word dropped into our own spirit, or the use of the gifts of the Spirit, it must line up with the Word. A true test for any situation, whether it be a prophetic word that is given, or a personal word from the Lord directed at our heart, is to check it against God’s Word for confirmation and accuracy.
It’s critical we listen to what God’s Word has to say for every situation, rather than depending only on our own reasoning or emotions. These are often influenced by the circumstances and people around us, and can’t be completely trusted. God does give us wisdom and can speak through our mind, intuition, or feelings, but we must never judge solely on those. Our emotions and mind will often lead us apart from God’s will, but choosing to listen to the Word never does.
For example, a young woman is considering marrying a man who professes to be a Christian, but his life doesn’t measure up to his confession. She can listen to her flesh and her emotions, which will try to convince her this man is the best choice for her life. Or she can see what the Word has to say about her situation and use it for the basis of her decision. When she does, she will see a person who is born again has evidence of fruit in their life. If there is no fruit, it’s possible the person is not born again. We are not to join ourselves in an intimate way with an unbeliever. A knowledge of the Word would direct her to make sure of the man’s commitment to the Lord before entering into a life with him.
Another way the Lord speaks to us is through a gentle ‘nudge’ to our spirit. It might be a quiet voice speaking through our conscience, or an impression that comes into our mind while praying, worshiping or considering a problem.
Romans 8:14, “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are the sons of God.”
It’s important to spend time with the Lord in prayer, opening our hearts and spirits to His voice and waiting on Him for direction. Spend time in worship, give yourself totally to Him, asking that Jesus be in complete control of your mind and heart as you seek Him and listen. As children of God, we can be confident the Holy Spirit will lead us, but as stated in Col. 3:15, “Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts,” and so peace must accompany the leading or direction we receive.
God’s peace is the sure sign that the Holy Spirit is directing us, rather than our own thoughts or desires. The Holy Spirit is quiet and gentle, but persistent, calling us to wait quietly before Him and listen for His voice. He speaks to us when we take the time to wait on Him, not rushing, not feeling we must always be talking, but patiently waiting for Him to speak.
Sometimes He chooses to speak when we’ve opened our hearts to Him in worship and are simply desiring to serve Him. While worshiping during a Wednesday evening service at my church, I strongly sensed the Lord was asking me to kneel during the balance of the worship service. I felt uncomfortable, as the rest of the congregation were on their feet. He impressed on my heart that, if I would be obedient, He was going to show His power before the service ended.
The ‘nudge’ was so strong, I knew I had to obey. I quietly slipped down to my knees and finished the worship service in tears, more moved than I had been in a long time. When the pastor came up to speak, he shared that someone in the congregation was in physical pain and asked that the person come forward for prayer. A woman immediately stepped out, but he didn’t pray for her. Instead, he explained the Lord had shown him someone was present who had been given a gift of faith for this woman’s healing and asked that person to come forward to pray.
I immediately felt faith well up in my spirit and knew this was why the Lord had asked me to be obedient. I walked forward, laying my hand on her back and praying briefly. She testified that the pain left as soon as my hand touched her back. The Lord chose to do a sovereign work, but in this case it was dependant upon my willingness to listen and obey.
The last section will be posted either tomorrow night or some time Saturday. Thanks for joining me & please feel free to post a comment any time!
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
In the Old Testament we see that God chose to speak primarily through his priests, kings and prophets, and rarely through ordinary men. At that time, He used animals, fleeces, burning bushes, and more, but how does He choose to speak to us today?
We are under a new covenant, purchased by the blood of Jesus, and sealed by the Holy Spirit. No longer are we required to go through a priest to hear God’s voice, but we are privileged to enter the very presence of God, through the ministry of the Holy Spirit.
God can speak to us in many different ways.
· Through the ministry of others, i.e., a pastor, counselor, friend, or family member who is ministering or teaching the Word. Wisdom and safety can be found in the counsel of others. Proverbs 24:6, “For waging war you need guidance, and for victory many advisers.”
· Reading the Word for ourselves and being led to passages that specifically relate to our problem or need at the time
· Seeking the Lord with a pure heart and He will give us a spirit of truth and wisdom. We see in Psalm 51:6, “Surely you desire truth in the inner parts; you teach me wisdom in the inmost place.” But we see in Proverbs 2:1-5 that it is vital to use our spiritual ears and understanding to seek wisdom. “My son, if you accept my words and store up my commands within you, turning your ear to wisdom and applying your heart to understanding, and if you call out for insight and cry aloud for understanding, and if you look for it as for silver and search for it as for hidden treasure, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God.”
· During worship. The Word can be conveyed through Spirit-filled music
· The memorization of God’s word. God often quickens a scripture to our hearts when needed most.
In Psalms 119:133, (NIV) it says, “Direct my footsteps according to your word; let no sin rule over me.” The Word is full of life and is God’s love letter to us. Through it He will lead us into truth.
In Psalms 119:105, we are told, “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.” We must allow God’s word to give us direction on a daily basis, not just when a crisis arises. It’s important to keep on the cutting edge in our walk with the Lord, so we don’t fall into a ‘crisis management’ state of being, and a reactionary approach to the Word of God, rather than relying on it for guidance daily.
Tuesday, November 14, 2006
For those of you who haven't visited my web site or read the opening scene of my book, check it out. Just scroll to the bottom of my blog & click on the link that says Yesterday's Child, with the web site addy listed there.
As I mentioned briefly yesterday, I made the decision to pull the book from the remaining 4 publishing houses that were reviewing it, based on input from a professional editing service. Barbara Warren is working with me and had some excellent suggestions that I felt needed to be implemented to strenghten the story line and soften the lead character. It's going to take quite a bit of work, but I've made it this far & can't quit now. I'll be writing to my agent tomorrow to see what kind of time line she needs for completion....hopefully I can have a few weeks, I'll keep you posted on how that goes.
The House we've been remodeling for the past 3 yrs., that's now for sale.
Our other huge time drain right now is our home. We spent the past 3 yrs doing a complete remodel of our 100 yr old Craftsman style home, so we could turn around and sell it, and build our dream home. We've waited over 30 yrs for this house, and want to do it right. It's a big project, and I'm the acting general contractor. Although I'm not responsible for the work, I am responsible to contact and schedule all the sub-contractors & materials. We have a very compentent contractor working on the job, who was willing to give us a much lower bid for the frame up, then work at an hourly rate from that point on, to help us save money. He's telling us we've saved over $50,000.00 by doing it ourselves, based on the size of the house (3,000' without the garage/work shop) & the way we're finishing it out.
The new house....it sits on 11 acres & is surrounded by trees...with a 1/4 mile long driveway lined on either side by Doug Fir. The setting is so peaceful, there are no neighbors in sight. We can hardly wait to get moved in next spring!
Join me tomorrow, as I'll be sharing some about my spiritual journey...where I've been & where the Lord has taken me.
Monday, November 13, 2006
Sunday, November 12, 2006
I'm many things...Christian, (all my life pretty much), wife of 34 years, mom of two grown kids, a daughter age 31 & son age 28, soon to be 29.....active in my small church where I serve on staff, lover of Christian fiction, both reading & writing.
I've been on many journeys during the course of my 50+ years (altho at heart I'm still very much 29!). I've followed my husbands dreams that have taken us from our home in the beautiful Pacific N.W., to the San Juan Islands, Alaska, and short jaunts that were work related, in Idaho & California. We finally chose to settle permanently back in Washington State and shift focus from the aircraft maintence industry to owning a saw mill for 15 years.
Now that phase has ended as we've sold our half of the business to our partner and decided to move on to other adventures. I've started my own adventure, embarking into the world of writing Christian fiction about a year ago. My hope is that the Lord will use my stories, both fiction and non-fiction, to touch the lives of women, bringing hope and healing where needed.
I'll blog about things that have happened in our lives that might interest you, amuse or entertain you, but also, hopefully, things that will minister to you.
I'll post short stories from time to time on this blog, as well as give you updates on my journey to publication, when and if that happens. I'll list places on the web that minister to women and bring encouragement to marriages. For you see, I too have been in a hard place in my marriage.
My husband and I are happily married now, but that hasn't always been the case. Our early years were filled with stress, tears and my husband turning to alcohol, when he chose to go down his own path and drift away from the Lord. He was a baby Christian when we married at the young age of not quite 19 & 20 yrs old. I'd been raised in a Christian home and had a solid foundation of faith, but his was still very tenuous. Breaking away from old friends was a struggle for him, and our tiny church had no other men near his age who could take the place of the old friends. Lack of discipleship and teaching, along with outside influences at work and with friends, pulled him back to where he'd been before knowing the Lord. Years went by, with our marriage bouncing around like a wild, out of control yo-yo. I was tempted to leave more than once, but stayed because I believed so strongly in marriage and truly loved my husband.
Don't get me wrong. I wasn't perfect. My immature responses to his problems often drove him away from me and away from the Lord. My tears, anger, hurt and desire to change & control him, had the opposite effect. It drove a wedge between us and caused a breach that only the Lord would be able to heal. Only by the Grace of God did we continue together, and even then, the stress was tangible.
I hope my posts here can minister to others in similar situations...women whose marriages haven't yet come out the other side and into a place of peace and wholeness. Believe me when I say, I understand where you are & how you're hurting, and I offer you hope that God does indeed change lives and heal broken relationships. He did it for us, and He wants to do it for you. Don't give up, if you've been praying for your marriage. Keep praying and believing God.
Please feel free to write....I don't have a lot of time and I won't be able to answer you privately. But I'll do my best to address questions or comments here on my blog. God bless you all!!!