Category Archives: Marriage

Marriage: Simple love is beautiful. It counts.

Ephesians 5:33 (NIV) However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.

LisaShaw_SimpleLove PostA few days ago I was at the grocery store. As I stood browsing through the buy one get one free bins, I noticed a man meticulously going through every flower in the flower section. He touched the bulbs and lifted the vases to smell the floral scents. I found myself looking up at him a time or two just fascinated with how much he paid attention to detail. We made eye contact and smiled respectfully at one another. He said, “I’m looking for the best flowers for my wife.” To which I replied, “That’s so nice. I’m sure she will appreciate them.” I began to wonder if she might be sick. As if he heard my thoughts he said, “I enjoy buying fresh flowers for her a few times a month and she doesn’t seem to mind that they are from Publix. I enjoy this simple way I can show my love for her and how much she means to me.” I knew in that moment, I’m talking to a man who understands how to love his wife as Christ loves the church. After I told him how I thought he should receive one of the husband of the year awards (after my hubby of course), I then said, “You sure do love your wife as Christ loves the church.” He smiled and replied, “And since you could sense that, you must also have a husband who loves you as Christ loves the church.” To which I replied graciously and with tears in my eyes, “Yes, I do and I thank God for him.”

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Marriage: Do you dialogue with your spouse regarding sex?

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Genesis 2:24 (AMP) 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.

There is so much that can be said about the two becoming one flesh but today I want to share with you respectfully about marital sex. When God ordained for a husband and wife to become one flesh part of this union included the beautiful act of sexual intimacy.

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Marriage: I’m not in a rush to get home!

 Come2MeandRest

“Love makes you kind. And kindness makes you likeable. When you’re kind, people want to be around you. They see you as being good to them and good for them.”  Love Dare

Several years ago I ministered at a church in Virginia on the 4 ways to care for your covenant. At the end of the function a woman approached me and started to cry. She shared how the message touched her heart, particularly when I shared Proverbs 21:9; it made her really look at herself.

Proverbs 21:9 (AMP) It is better to dwell in a corner of the housetop [on the flat oriental roof, exposed to all kinds of weather] than in a house shared with a nagging, quarrelsome, and faultfinding woman.

She said she is that woman—nagging, fault-finding and always complaining about anything and everything. She said her Mother was the same way while raising them and she began to wonder if she hadn’t followed suit. She told me that she was always asking her husband why he was so late coming home and he said, “I’m not in a rush to get home! You’re always nagging at me and complaining about the children, work, your family, nonsense at your church and so on.” As tears streamed down her face, I held her and prayed for her and her marriage.

As I held her she whispered in my ear, “I don’t think I’m a very kind person. I wouldn’t want to come home to me either.” I felt pain pouring out of her as I ministered to her. She was a beautiful Christian on the outside but had a lot of wounds on the inside that needed the beauty and healing of Christ to penetrate and I was determined to guide her in the right direction that day—right to the arms of Jesus where true healing from her past could begin. Unresolved pain from her childhood was conflicting with her ability to be the whole wife and mother God created her to be. She was saved but not in fellowship with Christ; there’s a difference, I know this because I once lived it. My heart hurt for her. Our connection continued beyond that day as I meant with her and ministered to her from the Word. Her husband had areas he had to work on too, and as he saw the changes in her he began to desire to get himself together as well. I remember the day she told me, “he likes coming home to me again and we are laughing together again.” I cry as I write this just as I did the day she told me; there’s nothing like the healing touch of Christ within the heart-walls of a marriage!

Just last week my own husband said to me after he arrived home from a long day, “you know babe, I love coming home to you.” That blessed my heart tenderly. I don’t know that he felt this way early on but I’m so thankful he does now. I thought of that precious woman from many years ago and I dug out her email and reached out to her. I’m happy to say they are on year 10 of their marriage and all is going well in the Lord! I then found the saying from the Love Dare calendar and it fit perfectly with this message!

Now, ask yourself some tough questions–

Are you kind? Does your spouse want to be around you? Is your spouse eager to come home to you at the end of a long day or are they delaying their arrival home because they know they’ll be greeted with complaint, nagging, fault-finding, harsh words, yelling and a person who is unkind? Please do not beat yourself up right now if that’s you. But, please do feel the drawing of the Lord; He’s drawing you to Himself for the healing your heart and mind (thoughts) needs right now.

A few tips you may want to try:

1. Take action now–Pray and ask God to show you the reasons why you are complaining, nagging, fault-finding, using unkind words toward your spouse, etc. This may hurt but being transparent is the first step toward receiving the healing you need. Trust that God won’t hurt you and He will help you.

2. Ask God to help and heal you in those areas. This will be a journey not an instant process so be patient with yourself and the process and most importantly trust God.

3. If you can, talk to your spouse about what you discovered in numbers 1 and 2 above. Apologize wherever necessary. Have the discussion during a time you are both calm and at ease with each other. Involve your spouse so that they know you are serious about wanting a marriage that is whole.

4. If necessary, turn to Christian help—pastoral, counseling, etc.

5. Take a breath when you’re about to complain, nag or fault-find. Pause and pray right at that moment. You’d be surprised how that deliberate, on-purpose action will bless your marriage.

6. Journal some of your feelings (past and present) but also journal all that you are grateful for about your marriage and family. Keep that list in an easy to reach place.

7. Remember, there is no perfect person or perfect marriage only a perfect God and He desires for your marriage to be blessed. Lean on Him.

I want to invite you to read the message I shared previously titled: “I’m not wrong you are!” I hope it will encourage you. Marriage is a beautiful covenant that is filled with blessings and some challenges. It’s far more than the Wedding day or the Honeymoon night—it takes prayer, love, respect, commitment, a desire to bless each other and honor God, and lots of hard work and every bit of it is worth it. If I can pray for you I’d love to so reach out. I always say, we’re in this marriage journey together.

(originally posted by Lisa Shaw on the Internet Cafe June 2012)

Lisa Shaw

Marriage: I’m not wrong you are!

 Confrontation

“Love is responsible—Can your spouse say that you have wronged or wounded them in any way and never made it right? Part of taking responsibility is admitting when you’ve failed and asking for forgiveness. God wants there to be no unresolved issues between the two of you”. Love Dare

I love this rich quote from the Love Dare calendar sitting on the bookshelf in my home-office. I looked over at it as I prepared to write a message for the Café on Marriage and this quote leaped off of the page and confirmed the message to be shared on forgiveness in a marriage.

Is there a wound within your marriage that has not been dealt with? Is unforgiveness fueling the distance within your marriage? Have hurtful words been spoken that no one refuses to own (take responsibility for), and each person is waiting for the other to apologize? If so, please resolve the issue now before it becomes bigger than your marriage. There are some wounds that when left unresolved, can create strife, separation and even lead to divorce and broken families.

Early in our marriage we would argue about some of the most ridiculous things—my meatballs vs. his Mothers meatballs, his holding up the newspaper to read while I was speaking to him which made me feel unimportant. There were also more serious issues that created wounds between us like the emotional wounds I brought into the marriage from being violated in my past. These wounds caused me not to trust him fully and to be emotionally needy. He brought into the marriage his own issues of living as an “island”–not needing the fellowship of people or what I called being disconnected. When you place a disconnected person with a needy person problems will arise—anger will flare, hurtful words will be spoken and neither will want to admit they are wrong—both are saying, “I’m not wrong you are!” This can cause deep wounds unless someone makes the decision to stop scabbing over the problem with a band aid and really desire for the wounds to be healed. When the desire to be whole outweighs the desire to be right in comes Christ and the healing begins.

After 22 years of marriage I can truly say that my hubby and I don’t have the type of communication breakdown we had during the first several years of our marriage. We’ve reached a place where when we upset each other we deal with it quickly because of four primary reasons: 1. We want to please God in our marriage. 2. It takes far too much of our energy, joy and peace to stay angry or distant from each other and we love each other too much for that! 3. It’s not a good example for our adult children and our grandchildren if they were to see or sense tension between us. 4. It would mess with our ministry—with our ability to serve others in Christ. The Bible tells us in Amos 3:3 Can two walk together but they be agreed? The answer is no, not fully and effectively and that includes within marriage.

3 steps toward wholeness in your marriage:

 1. Be willing to look at your contribution to the problem. Pointing the finger out in blame is easy but a truly strong and humble person will point the finger inward and be willing to ask God to show them the areas where they need to be and do better within the marriage.

 2. Create boundaries. I shared above four primary areas that we keep in the forefront of our minds within our marriage: pleasing God, our love for each other, being a good example for our children and grandchildren and being able to serve God effectively in ministry. What are your boundaries? It is important to create them and then maintain them as sacred within your covenant. I call them boundaries because they are the driving forces that keep you and your spouse grounded when distractions and situations arise within your marriage that would attempt to cause strife.

 3. Let go of being a right fighter. If you have the need to always be right, to always have the last word and to be the last to apologize then you are a right fighter and that will cause great wounds in your marriage. It can also destroy your marriage or at the least it will cause division and zap the love and joy out of your relationship. Learn to apologize quickly and forgive easily.

 The Love Dare said, “Love is responsible.” I agree with that statement, don’t you? We’re adults and we’ve been given the gift of marriage. Let’s be responsible in how we care for our covenant gift. It’s not always going to be easy but when done with Christ in the lead it will be rewarding!

 I pray this message blesses you and your marriage. If I can pray for you please get in touch. We’re in this journey of marriage together. There is no perfect person or perfect marriage only a perfect God so let’s trust in Him together.

Lisa Shaw

(originally posted by Lisa Shaw on the Internet Cafe May 2012)

Marriage: My hubby doesn’t know Jesus yet

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With tears streaming down her face, she clinched her tissue tightly and with a quivering voice she said, “My hubby doesn’t know Jesus yet. I don’t know what to do. I love him so much and I want him to know Jesus like I do.” As she thought of what it would mean to his life now and for eternity, she cried even more. I wrapped my arms around her and began to cry out to God for her husband’s salvation. I called him by name. I spoke and prayed God’s word for her husband. When we finished praying I realized I was crying almost as hard as she was. Why? Because I once was her. I thank God for the many years my husband has walked with Him but I remember in the early years of our now, over 22 year marriage, that he didn’t know the Lord’; oh how I prayed and cried out for him. I also remember the day and everything that took place, when Jesus called his name and my husband Peter said, “Yes Lord”.

If you are a Christian woman who has an unsaved husband I want to encourage you in 4 ways:

1. Pray for your husband daily and often. Pray for his heart to be softened and opened to the presence and move of the Holy Spirit. Pray out of a heart of love and not frustration.

2. Trust in the Lord’s plan for your husband’s life. Be patient knowing that God is at work in ways you may not see; trust that He is at work in your husband’s life. One of the many Scriptures I leaned on when my hubby wasn’t saved yet was Proverbs 3:5 (AMP) “Lean on, trust in, and be confident in the Lord with all your heart and mind and do not rely on your own insight or understanding.”

3. Be a loving example of Christ for your husband to see. Don’t nag at him about going to church, reading the bible with you or watching Christian television but do let him see how much you love God and how much you love and value him as your husband. You’ll win him with love, kindness, patience and prayer before you’ll ever win him to Jesus with nagging, impatience and a negative attitude. 1 Peter 3:1-2 (NIV) Wives, in the same way submit yourselves to your own husbands so that, if any of them do not believe the word, they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives, when they see the purity and reverence of your lives.

4. Keep growing in your own relationship with the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. The more you know their love and truth from the Word, the more you will love them and be able to share their love with your husband.

Remember, as much as you love your dear husband, God loves him even more. He is patient with your husband as He was with you (and with me) for He doesn’t desire that any one live spiritually dead or separated from His love and truth provided to us through the sacrifice of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. 2 Peter 3:8-9 (AMP) Nevertheless, do not let this one fact escape you, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years and a thousand years as one day. The Lord does not delay and is not tardy or slow about what He promises, according to some people’s conception of slowness, but He is long-suffering (extraordinarily patient) toward you, not desiring that any should perish, but that all should turn to repentance.

Don’t give up hope and don’t stop praying and living by loving-example. Love your husband with an unconditional love that comes only from God. See both of you in the mind of your heart, loving God and living for Him together. I did and for many years now my hubby and I have been doing just that—loving and living for God, together. I pray the same for you and your dear husband.

Lisa Shaw

(originally posted by Lisa Shaw on the Internet Cafe April 2012)

Praying for your husband through God’s eyes

Philippians 4:6-7 (NIV) Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. In my previous post, “The Prayer that will Change Your Marriage” I… Continue Reading

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