When joy is elusive...

When joy is elusive...
When you're in a difficult season, it's so easy to feel defeated.

  • When your child is a prodigal.
  • When your marriage is falling apart.
  • When your doctor gives you a terrible diagnosis. 
  • When a loved one dies.
  • When you lose a home, a job, or a friendship.
  • When finances are tight, or non-existent.
It can be SO easy to think to yourself, "If only this would change, I could be happy. If only..."

What does God have to say about things like this?

First, we are to weep with others when they weep. When you find yourself in a season of weeping, you allow yourself to weep and work through those emotions, and you surround yourself with people who, like Job's friends, will just sit in the weeping with you.

Second, you lean into God as your source of comfort, of relief, and of your JOY.

Scripture tells us in Romans 18:18:
For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us."
It's important to remember that nothing happening to us on earth can compare to the beauty and indescribable joy awaiting us in eternity. 

When we get there, nothing here will matter anymore. All that will matter is being in the presence of Jesus. 

Yes, it's painful to think about your child rejecting God and missing out on this glory. It's painful to walk through a divorce, or scary medical diagnosis, or a betrayal.

But when you feel as though you need your child's salvation, or your marriage to be a godly marriage, or you need to have all of your bills paid, in order to feel joy, then you have elevated those things ABOVE Jesus.

When you seek something other than Jesus for your joy, you've made that thing an idol.
Christ is sufficient for us. 

2 Corinthians 5:8 tells us
And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work."
We have all sufficiency, in ALL things, at ALL times. And the reason for this is so that we can abound in every good work.

It's difficult to do good works when we're anxious, depressed, waiting on something else to bring us joy, isn't it?

Sweet friend, you don't have to wait to do good. You don't have to wait to find JOY.

Psalm 16:11
You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
James 1:2-4
Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.
Proverbs 10:28
The hope of the righteous brings joy, but the expectation of the wicked will perish.
When we place our focus on Christ, and recognize His sufficiency and ability to BE our complete joy, we will have that joy in abundance - even when we aren't getting the earthly things we want or think we need.

Can you believe this today? 
Can you believe Christ alone is sufficiently able to bring you all joy and peace, regardless of your earthly circumstances?

Comment below and let me know how I can pray over you today.

Does your husband find you attractive?

Does your husband find you attractive?
If you're like me, when you first met your husband and while you were dating, you spent an embarrassing amount of time choosing outfits, putting on make-up, figuring out your hair, and making sure you looked your absolute best when you saw him.

Then we got married, and after a while living in the same home where you have every right to feel comfortable, you may have cared less and less whether you were intentionally pleasing him or not.

Some wives make drastic changes to their hair either by cutting it or dying it, without first asking their husband's opinion.

Some wives go shopping for clothes and never think to ask their husband which items they like before they purchase.

I've heard many wives joke about how they don't even bother to shave their legs anymore, because they're married so they shouldn't have to.

After months or years of marriage, while our husbands remain faithful to us - the only women they are truly "allowed" to look at and lust over - we tend to punish their faithfulness by disregarding their opinions about our appearance.

Some women get upset because their husbands don't compliment them anymore or tell them how beautiful they are - but have they stopped to consider whether they are intentional about catering to their husbands preferences?

Here's my encouragement to you today, sweet friend. 

Before you change your hair, or buy that new outfit, ask what your husband thinks

If he doesn't want you to cut your hair, then don't. If he doesn't like a certain outfit, don't buy it.

Relax at home, but make sure to take care of yourself daily with proper hygiene, shower early in the day, get dressed, shave regularly. 

Not out of obligation to do what he wants, but out of a desire to please him, to make yourself attractive to him, to show him that his opinion matters to you because HE matters to you.

Wouldn't you appreciate the same treatment from him?

Let's be wives who honor their husbands and seek to please them in all things, including our appearance.

Have you recently asked your husband's opinion about something related to your appearance? I'd love to hear about how you're honoring him that way - share in the comments!

Welcome Home!

Welcome Home!
Imagine yourself walking through the door of your home at the end of the day.

Everything is immaculate. The house has been cleaned, everything is put away where it belongs. Your diffuser is misting with your favorite blend. Dinner is just about ready, dessert has been prepared. Your husband greets you with a smile, a hug, and a kiss.

As you make your way into your bedroom, you notice the bed is made, the laundry has been washed and put away, and the bathroom is sparkling. Your bathrobe and comfy clothes are laid on the bed for you, along with a little love note from your husband.

You make your way to the kitchen to join your family and find fresh flowers on the table, and your husband pouring you a glass of your favorite beverage. You enjoy a delicious dinner and dessert, then your husband clears your space and makes sure the dishes get done and the kitchen cleaned up.

He draws you a bath with some Stress Away bath bombs, hands you a glass of wine, and gets your towel and bathrobe ready for you. During your bath, he gets the kids ready for bed and brings them in to say good night.

After your bath, he asks you to choose what to watch on TV so the two of you can snuggle on the couch for a while before bed. 

At bedtime, he fills up the diffuser with your favorite sleepy blend, then spends a few minutes giving you an incredible foot rub before you both get under the covers and he turns off the lights.

How does this make you feel as you drift off to sleep? Do you feel loved, cared for, appreciated, adored

What if he didn’t do all of these things every single day, but maybe just one or two. Would that still be pretty awesome?

Let’s turn this around and consider what things we do for our husbands when they come home from work.
  • Do we have the house clean for them? 
  • Do we prepare dinners we know they’ll love? 
  • Do we add beauty to our homes in the form of flowers or delicious diffuser recipes misting when they arrive? 
  • Do we pour them a beverage, clear their space after dinner, and make sure everything gets cleaned up? 
  • Do we let them relax after dinner, choose what to watch on TV, and get everything prepared for bed?
  • Do we offer to rub their feet or their shoulders?
All too often, I hear women talk about how outdated the advice is to have dinner ready for your husband, or clean the house for him, or bring him a drink, or give him a massage. It’s the “Stepford Wife” persona that our society seems to think makes women look like slaves rather than spouses.

But let me ask you…if your husband did all of those things for you, would you view him as your slave, or would you simply feel appreciated, cherished, and treasured?

Philippians 2:4 in the ESV version tells us, “Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.”

Notice it says look “not only” to your own interests. You are still expected to look to your own interests. But it can’t be ALL about you.

I don’t personally believe it’s realistic to expect to serve your husband in this manner every single night, doing all the things. You’d get burnt out and exhausted - or at least I would! 😄 It’s simply not sustainable.

What I do believe is that we can take some of those things and try to do as many of them as we can each day. Maybe one night we have an incredibly special home-cooked meal and dessert ready for him. The next night we cater to him by having his beverage ready and drawing him a bath. The night after, we give him an opportunity to relax after work by taking care of the kids, putting them to bed, and letting him take over the TV.

When we think of Christ, we think of Him as the Son of God, full of love and power and wisdom and authority. Yet, He tells us in Mark 10, “For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve...”

If the One we claim as Lord and Savior considers Himself a servant, how much more should we find honor in serving those we love, especially the one with whom we are one flesh?

What are some of the ways you welcome your husband home and serve him at the end of the day?

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