Enlarging Your Faith: Never Say Never

Enlarging Your Faith: Never Say Never

enlarging your faith

Shortly after getting married, in fact it was on our honeymoon, when I slipped into my flirty pajamas, jumped into bed next to my husband and exclaimed, “OK, I’m ready!” and he asked, “For what?”

I replied with the obvious response, “To pray together … you know, a couple that prays together, stays together? That is what my mom always says.” To which he replied, “I will NEVER pray with you, that just isn’t something I do. It’s personal and between me and God.”

To be fair, maybe my timing was a little off. But I absolutely deflated. My spirit was crushed. Not only did I feel deprived of the coveted marriage ideal that couples are supposed to pray together, it was worse than that. I felt totally duped by my new husband. After all, we prayed together during our courtship.

I was devastated. Something so clearly beneficial to our marriage was rejected. My parents prayed together! And I was certain I fell in love with someone who was going to pray with me. It didn’t seem right!  I knew God and I knew He loved me. I knew this was the man He meant for me to marry. He moved mountains to bring us together.

I come from a long line of prayer warriors. I like to think my sweet grandma lived to 103 because she had prayers God still wanted her to be praying. Growing up, when situations arose, my parents always told me to “just pray about it.”

The fact my husband and I didn’t pray together other than to bless our meals unsettled me and rocked my faith. I didn’t want anyone to know because I was certain every other Christian couple prayed together. It was like a cardinal rule for a good Christian marriage.

I loved my husband and I wanted to stay together. But I didn’t like the situation. Honestly, the only thing I could do was “just pray about it.” Instead of “Run Forrest, Run!” It became, “Pray Julie, Pray!” Originally, my prayers were that my husband would pray with me because I knew better and you NEVER say never, especially to God.

I truly believed Matthew 21:22.

You can pray for anything, and if you have faith, you will receive it.”

What I received by praying was far different than what I thought I wanted.

Through the process of praying without ceasing, God changed my heart and He changed my prayers. My heart turned from criticizing my husband, to seeking to understand my husband. My prideful prayers of me telling God how my husband needed to change eventually evolved into prayers of loving my husband for who he has been created to be.

Through the years, my prayers became more powerful. My husband witnessed first-hand how God faithfully answers even my smallest requests.

A few seasons back, I went through some personal challenges. I was really struggling, and I needed help. I asked my husband to pray for me and he did, without hesitation. He also prayed for me without my asking, just because he sensed I needed him to pray.

I cherish those moments when he pulled me close and prayed over me the most beautiful, loving prayers. Those times assured me how much God loves me and how my faithfulness and prayers honored Him and the man He gave me.

In the past, my husband and I have had this running joke that the first thing out of my husband’s mouth is “no.” This may have been what plagued him on our honeymoon, but I always say, “never say never” because he is definitely not the same man I am married to now.

He has since challenged himself to say “yes” more often. In fact, he took his “yes” a step further and ordered “promise cards” printed with the words: “because I said I would.” He hands these out at random times to people. This year for my birthday my husband gave me a promise card. It was the best gift a wife like me could ever receive. The words on the card said “I will pray with my wife. Because I said I would.”

enlarging your faith

Over twelve years ago my prayers stemmed from my own selfish motivation to change my husband, but God used them to change me. My consistent and persistent prayers changed the trajectory of our marriage for the better. I never know how or when God will answer my prayers.

But as my faith has grown, so has my trust in God and “knowing” no longer matters. I only do what I am called, which is to obediently seek Him. Today I teach other women how to pray for their husbands as this has simply become an act of obedience in response to an ever-loving God.

enlarging your faithJulie Landreth has a passion for healthy and thriving relationships–especially in marriage and friendship. She is a speaker and a “wife coach” who loves sharing with women her passion for prayer and ways to actively cultivate a thriving marriage.  She leads a growing number of women in San Jose, CA through her curriculum: Consistency and Persistency: The Art of Praying for your Husband. Having been married 12 years, she and her husband have cultivated a marriage filled with intentional love, effective communication, sustainable fun, and a date night every Friday night for the last 9 years. She also finds deliberate ways to spend quality time with her 9-year-old son who shares many of her artistic talents. In addition, she is a freelance photographer and designer. 

If you would like to hear more from Julie and receive 5 Days of Prayers to get you started praying for your husband, please visit her and sign up at
http://eepurl.com/cmn9CX.


Now available! 

In this six-week Bible Study you will, possibly for the first time, truly understand how God wants you to be free. Free from clutter so you can be free to change your world. We have an online version as well as a traditional workbook with DVD option.

Find out more: http://www.kathilipp.com/clutter-free-bible-study/

 

The 5 Day Love Challenge: Day 5 Love Him with Scripture

The 5 Day Love Challenge: Day 5 Love Him with Scripture

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Love him with scripture.

Today is the final day of our love challenge, but the reality is, we can keep up these simple habits every day. For our Day 5 challenge to love on your man, I want you to love him with scripture.

I know it comes as no surprise to you that I believe one of the most powerful ways for a woman to love and support her husband is to pray for him. So that is what I’m asking you to do today! Putting some power behind those prayers by putting some scripture into it.

Here are some of my favorite scriptures to pray for Roger:

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. Philippians 4:6

Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7

What is your husband going through right now? Is he feeling overwhelmed or in a season of life where he feels depressed? Is work stressful or does he just feel a little bored with life? Search out scripture to pray for him for his specific season in life. Envelope him in the love of his Heavenly Father and YOU!


focusonthefamilyWant more? I am over at Focus on the Family radio broadcast today where I share “Simple Ways to Help Your Husband Feel Loved”.  

Listen In and leave a comment about your favorite tip! 

 


101-Simple-Ways-to-Show-Your-Husband-You-Love-Him300 Today is the Last Day to Win!

Answer the Question of the Day on Kathi’s Facebook page for your chance to win a copy of 101 Ways to Tell Your Husband You Love Him!

Today’s question: What Scripture will you prayer over your husband this week?

The 5 Day Love Challenge – Day 4 Love Him with SEX

The 5 Day Love Challenge – Day 4 Love Him with SEX

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We’ve made it to Day 4 of our 5 Day Love Challenge, and it’s time to talk about sex, ladies. Let’s love him with sex. It is an important to marriage and feeling connected.

Your man needs and wants sex, probably more than you do.

If a man feels like he’s desirable to you, the love of his life, the other areas he may be struggling in (work, parenting, etc.) somehow seem more manageable.

One time this week, it’s your job to initiate sex. For some of you, this is going to be way beyond your comfort zone. Do what you can – if it means snuggling, do that. The idea here is to take the first step and be open and tender.

In my experience, it’s better to shoot for earlier in the week to “make your move,” so that if things come up (he has to work late, sick kids, etc.) you still have some time to check this off your list. If you love him with sex, you will make your man’s week! Because we all want to be desired.

In preparation for your romantic evening, I encourage you to pick up a book on the subject. Let it be your inspiration in case things have become a little predictable (or downright non-existent). I particularly like these two books by Dr. Kevin Lehman: Sex Begins in the Kitchen and Sheet Music”.

Want more?

I was thrilled to be asked by Focus on the Family to write an article about Positively Supporting Your Husband’s Happiness. That article can be found here. I hope it encourages you to continue the good work of building up your man!


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Win! Day 4!

Answer the Question of the Day on Kathi’s Facebook page for your chance to win a copy of 101 Ways to Tell Your Husband You Love Him!

Today’s question: What is one way you can let your husband know you still find him sexy?

The 5 Day Love Challenge: Day 3 41 Ways to Love Your Man with Actions!

The 5 Day Love Challenge: Day 3 41 Ways to Love Your Man with Actions!

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For today’s challenge, we are talking about how to love your man with actions. I hit the streets … OK, I asked my Facebook peeps to write the blog post for me. How do you love your man with actions?!?

Here are 41 Ways that you said you love your man with actions

  1. Naomi Williams – Mine aren’t appropriate to post openly in the comments section.
  2. Heather Harbeke Prouty – Change the sheets regularly! Nothing like having amazing smelling sheets when it’s time to go to bed!
  3. Angela Springer Hood – I mailed him a thank you card full (front and back) with things I was thankful for that he does for our family.
  4. Olivia Myers – Clear the driveway of a million feet of snow (slight exaggeration?) before he’s home. This avoids tire marks … something he despises!
  5. Shirley Devuono Rempe – l making sure my kids are calm, the house is tidy (maybe not perfect but toys away, etc), and supper ready to eat when he gets home! Not always easy when i run a home day care, but I try daily to do it
  6. Vicki Limes One thing I do is have someone take my phone number to him. It might say something like this “You’re HOT! Call me 214-555-5555!” (My real number of course) I usually ask an older teen or young adult because it also reinforces to them the value of flirting with your husband!
  7. Nancy Whiting My husband gets up very early, so to make it easier for him, I have his work clothes put together in a ‘clothes package’ for him, and set on the table by the wood stove the night before so he doesn’t have to take the time to even have to think about it in the morning.
  8. Laurie Batdorff Hays Asking what would help him most at home. He may not care about something you think he does! Cooking his favorite meal. Time and space to collect his thoughts after work so he can switch gears.
  9. Melanie Barnard Witkovskie – I try to make his favorite meals and cook for him in general. I also try to make sure I don’t look like I just rolled out of bed when he gets home. Being a stay-at-home mom with a baby, it’s sometimes difficult, but I try to at least put on a little makeup and fix my hair! I want to look nice for him!
  10. Dana DeVries – I text him love notes while he’s at work. I became interested in football and basketball to cheer his teams with him. I ask him how I can pray for him and follow up on those things. I make sure to look him in the eyes and smile when he comes home.
  11. Traci Sheldon – I help him find reasons, resources and opportunities to do his hobbies. I also supported the remodeling of the “man cave” and did not complain about the cost or time it took to accomplish for him to have a space for himself.
  12. Sue Hall Walsh – I put sticky notes in his work bag, lunch bag or car to let him know I’m thinking of him during the day. It gives me the chance to let him know how much I appreciate him. Something I often think of after he’s left the house for the day.
  13. Lisa Evans Fulton – Last night my husband was snowblowing the driveway in the dark so I wouldn’t get stuck this morning, and he slipped and fell on his back. He insisted on finishing the job, so I passed some Advil out the window to him and then had a heating pad ready when he came inside and rubbed his sore spots. He insists on taking care of me .. .a few Advil and a heating pad hardly seemed like adequate thanks, but he was grateful.
  14. Karey Lehrman Spidell – Keeping his favorite snacks stocked. Making sure the lunch stuff is stocked. And easy to grab!
  15. Simone Dankenbring – My husband enjoys watching sports, especially the Blazers and Seahawks. I acknowledge and show how much I’m interested in something that he enjoys. I also keep him company and snuggle next to him during the games. When they win, I cheer along with him and when they lose, I always remind him that there’s “next time.”
  16. SueAnn Kavanagh I set the timer on the coffee maker, so when he gets up the coffee is all made! I know it is a little thing, but it makes his heart smile every time I do it!
  17. Susy Flory – Buying his favorite red licorice from the gourmet chocolate shop!
  18. Lisa Johnson Blose – Sleep on the couch because he works so hard during the week I don have the heart to wake him when he’s snoring. (He also will do the same for me.) Love my man!
  19. Bonnie Wild – Cleaning his trophy BBQ smoker so it’s ready for the next wonderful meal by the Bobby Flay wannabe (I say that lovingly).
  20. Tonya Walter – Make his lunch every day. Even when the kids are off school.
  21. Carole Landrith Hanna – Ironing his work shirts … without whining
  22. Anna McCullough – Ditto Olivia’s post about clearing the snow from the driveway before it’s driven on! Also giving him time to decompress when he comes home from work.
  23. Jeannette Shields I would eat a piece of fish for him … I hate fish but if he likes it, this is what I’d do, but definitely not all the time!!!
  24. Robin Lord Dilallo – I stop what I’m doing, if I can, and help him with whatever is stressing him out at the moment. Wallet? Keys? Need to talk after a tough day?
  25. Chris Moss – Today I had the emissions test done on my husband’s car and registered it at the MVD. Then I had it washed, buffed and hand-waxed.
  26. Michelle Brown – I like to leave frequent voice mails for him to thank him for providing for our family and wishing him a great day! Once in awhile I will deliver a milkshake or smoothie to him in the middle of the work day.
  27. Melissa D. Gillispie – My husband and I are a team. I cleaned the kitchen while he helped our daughter with her homework. He always has a clean bathroom.
  28. Angie Bell – He likes when I go outside and shoot hoops with him. He loves basketball and he loves me. Double bonus.
  29. Cathy Lo Davis – He loves freshly brewed ice tea, so I make sure to have the pitcher full when he comes from from work.
  30. Tanya Aitken – I have his favorite drink in the freezer so it’s nice & cold (usually tea) waiting for him. I set a pair of his comfiest lounge clothes on the bed and when he walks in, I don’t say anything. He gets dressed and walks out with a smile, as I hold out his drink for him. He smiles and says, you did it again.
  31. Heidi Bonner – Actually doing those small jobs he asks me to do.
  32. Heather K Seay – Feed our animals (3 outside dogs and 1 cat). A chore he despises.
  33. Jamie Jerome – I stock up on his favorite cut of meat in advance, when on sale, make beer bread in advance and freeze it, and make sure that his favorite brew is on hand. (Plus, it’s fun to be preggers and at the liquor store. People are hilarious.) This keeps us ready for a “stay home date” any night for 30 minutes or less. He also won’t go to bed until things are picked up and tidy and the dishes are done even if he is coming off an 18 hour shift. So on nights I know he won’t have energy left, I do it, no matter how exhausted I am from my day.
  34. Sara Graham – I baked brownies filled with Reeces Peanut Butter cups and Reeces Pieces. I also made fancy sandwiches for his lunches and had coffee ready in a travel mug. Also I cleaned up some of the things around the house that drive him crazy
  35. Jo Leneb – Make sure there is always something in the fridge for lunches and snacks.
  36. Renee Simpson Holden – Taking out the trash, instead of asking him to do it.
  37. Pam Wood Humphrey – Polish his shoes.
  38. Amber Schumacher – Picking up dog poo before he gets home! Making his coffee and setting the timer so he wakes up to fresh brewing coffee. Making his lunch for the next day (something out of the norm).
  39. Christie Terry McKay – Buying his favorite snacks and candy and giving him time to decompress every day when he comes home from work.
  40. Emily Wilkerson Wilson – Take out the trash so he can sleep 10 more minutes.
  41. Lindsey Cuartilon – This is good stuff! All I can come up with is that I don’t run away and leave him with all these kids! Lol.

So, there you have it — 41 ways to love your man with actions. Tell us in the comments below how your love your man with actions.


WIN! Day 3101-Simple-Ways-to-Show-Your-Husband-You-Love-Him300

Answer the Question of the Day on Kathi’s Facebook page for your chance to win a copy of 101 Ways to Tell Your Husband You Love Him!

Question of the Day: What is one thing you can do for your man this week that tells him how much you love him?

The 4 Day Love Challenge – Day 2: Love Him with Stuff

The 4 Day Love Challenge – Day 2: Love Him with Stuff

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I get frustrated at times with the idea we all get to determine how much our partner loves us by the size of the gift and whether the gesture of love went viral on YouTube. Yuck. We don’t need over the top. I think we just need a little something special for our men, presented in a slightly special way. Let’s learn how to love him with stuff in Day 2!

I wrote about this in my book The Marriage Project:

A tree ran into my car.

Yes, you read that sentence correctly.

I am blessed to live in Northern California where we bundle up in our winter woolens if there is a slight chill in the air, and the only snow we see is when someone forgets to use their Head & Shoulders shampoo.

So it was out of the ordinary when the storm rolled through town. Power outages were reported all over the city, fender benders littered the highways, and the Starbucks on our corner was closed.

Obviously, this was a desperate situation.

When I got home from my morning speaking engagement, I parked my van and ran inside, desperate to warm up and dry out.

I went upstairs to our bedroom, where my husband was working at his desk. Not five minutes after I got changed into dry clothes, Roger and I heard a big crack and looked out in horror and amazement as our giant oak tree decided to take up residence on top of my car.

All we could do was watch, laugh, and thank God that no one was in the car at the time.

Since then, I’ve been cruising around town in a series of rental cars until my van is fully functioning again. I’ve tried out hybrids and subcompacts, 4-runners and sedans.

Until yesterday. Yesterday, the rental agency ran out of the teeny-tiny cars I was renting to save money. They asked me if, for a few dollars more, I would like an upgrade to a nicer car that was available right away…a current model black Mercedes-Benz E-Class.

Um…OK.

I knew, being in possession of that car, I had to turn our ho-hum, stay-at-home night into an out-on-the-town date night. You wouldn’t want an automobile like that going to waste, now would you?

Roger and I used a gift card to get a couple of lattes at a Starbucks drive-thru, and then took a drive into the mountains, sipping our drinks and enjoying the scenery and the company. A perfect date—all for the small price of an upgraded rental car.

There was just something so fun and adventurous about that car that it turned that silly little latte into a memory that will last us a lifetime.

So this week, I want you to get him a little something, but give it to him in a special way.

Here are some ideas for a little something to love him with stuff (all of these can be had for under $5):
  • His favorite candy bar (that he doesn’t have to share with you).
  • A magazine that he loves but is too cheap to subscribe to.
  • His favorite sports drink.
  • 5 packs of his favorite gum.
  • His favorite Starbucks drink delivered to work.
  • A frozen yogurt.
  • A guy-flick movie rental.
  • Baking him his favorite chocolate chip cookies.
  • A small bottle of manly scented lotion with the promise of a back rub.
  • $5 iTunes gift card (or Google Play for our Windows guys.)
  • A video game rental.
  • $5 in quarters for the local arcade.
  • A new ringtone.

OK – now to give it to him in a special way. You could…

  • Leave it on the dashboard of his truck.
  • Hide it in his computer bag.
  • Tie it to the dog (as long as it’s not edible…)
  • Have one of your kids deliver it.
  • Put it on his pillow.
  • Have Amazon send it to his office.

What are you going to get him to love him with stuff – and how are you going to give it to him? Share your ideas in the comments below so we can all learn from each other!

GO…



101-Simple-Ways-to-Show-Your-Husband-You-Love-Him300

Win! 

Answer the Question of the Day on Kathi’s Facebook page for your chance to win a copy of 101 Ways to Tell Your Husband You Love Him!

Today’s question: What small ways do you make your husband feel loved?

Episode #220- Rebuilding a Marriage Better than New

Episode #220- Rebuilding a Marriage Better than New

rebuilding a marriage

ListenNow

When there has been betrayal in your marriage, restoration doesn’t seem possible and rebuilding a marriage seems daunting. Many of us just wouldn’t go down that road, but other times, when God’s plan includes rebuilding your marriage, He uses it to move mountains. So how do you go from a completely broken place, to a marriage that is better than new, fully restored and more connected than you ever realized it could be?

Kathi talks to Cindy Beall, a woman that has gone from shattered to restored, betrayed but now, with a lot of honesty and hard work, in a marriage that is beautiful. She is the author of Rebuilding a Marriage Better than New, and Healing Your Marriage When Trust is Broken. Kathi and Cindy discuss what that honesty and work look like and how life can look on the other side of broken.