Faith Without Works…

I’m already meditating on my 2012 resolutions. Resolutions for me are more like petitions than a list of things I want to do.

They are requests I make to God to be or live a certain way.

Years ago I made a petition to God regarding submission. I told God that I wanted to submit to my husband because I REALLY wanted to make my marriage work. I told God that I was afraid to submit and become vulnerable. I told him how felt I would be taken advantage of and mistreated by my husband if I submitted. I told God how I wanted to trust in HIS plan of submission but how I lacked the faith.

God subsequently equipped me with the faith to submit and my relationship with my husband deepened to a level I never thought possible. I trusted God and both my husband and I grew in faith as a result.

From that point I knew that I was holding back out of fear but I wanted to trust God with it ALL.

For me, trusting God with it all started with a petition.

However, I find myself again at a point where I am holding back and not trusting God.

God knows that I am often fearful of the future, easily stressed over finances and worrisome. I worry about the future on a regular basis. I ponder the what-if’s and find myself focused on the worst case scenario.

This is something I want to stop worrying about. I want my fears about finances to be settled once and for all.

Here’s why.

My fear about my financial well-being demonstrates my mistrust for God. What I am saying by worrying is that I don’t trust Him to provide for my family’s needs. The funny thing is…my spirit knows that’s not true but my mind refuses to accept it.

So why do I keep going back to the negative?

1-      I spend too much time meditating on the negative and not enough time meditating on His promises of provision.

2-      Deep down inside, I don’t believe that I deserve to not have to struggle financially. The thought of being debt free both excites and scares me. We are six years from 100% debt free and I can here Satan whisper in my ear every day, “You won’t see that last mortgage payment get sent in…I promise you.”

Did you know that the two leading causes for divorce are arguments over money and arguments over marital roles?

Satan does not want me or you to live out Gods plan for the Christian family. He wants us to be laden in debt and burden down with a lack of peace.

Therefore, I am making a new petition to God for 2012 regarding my perspective on finances. Instead of waiting until we are debt free to begin giving to some causes that we love, we will start now by dedicating a portion of what I make from my business to the follow charities/businesses for the next 12 months.

I’ll do these expecting two results:

1-      That we will be 100% debt free.

2-      I will trust God and not worry about our finances in 2012

If you don’t already know…God has placed a calling for missionary work in my heart and I hope that by beginning to use my resources to meet the needs of some of the missions I love, I’ll no longer focused on what I don’t have but be more focused on how I can use what I have to bless others.

Note: I hope this makes sense. I try not to do too much editing when I write from my heart…if so I end up editing out what I believe God wants me to share with you.

Do you want to go into the new year worry free and trusting that God will provide for you and your family? I’d love to pray for your faith as I pray for mine. Let me know and I’ll add your name to my  prayer journal.

Psalm 112

1 Praise ye the Lord. Blessed is the man that feareth the Lord, that delighteth greatly in his commandments.

2 His seed shall be mighty upon earth: the generation of the upright shall be blessed.

3 Wealth and riches shall be in his house: and his righteousness endureth for ever.

4 Unto the upright there ariseth light in the darkness: he is gracious, and full of compassion, and righteous.

5 A good man sheweth favour, and lendeth: he will guide his affairs with discretion.

6 Surely he shall not be moved for ever: the righteous shall be in everlasting remembrance.

7 He shall not be afraid of evil tidings: his heart is fixed, trusting in the Lord.

8 His heart is established, he shall not be afraid, until he see his desire upon his enemies.

9 He hath dispersed, he hath given to the poor; his righteousness endureth for ever; his horn shall be exalted with honour.

10 The wicked shall see it, and be grieved; he shall gnash with his teeth, and melt away: the desire of the wicked shall perish.

Why Does Modesty Lie On The Shoulders of Women?

Why does it seem as if modesty lies upon the shoulders of women?

I had a hard time getting my thoughts about this topic written out in a easy to read post. I struggled first because I believe that faith is a personal walk that involves actively seeking Gods direction. As each of us seek after God we receive revelation and understanding which allows us to accept and apply His word to our lives despite any persecution we might face.

I dress modestly because I believe the entire Bible and seek to apply all things that are revealed in it to my everyday life. I believe that women have the power to influence men with their bodies. I also believe that the influence can be used for good or for evil like anything else. As Christian men and women we must make a decision to either follow Gods word concerning modesty and lust or not.

In general, men are more prone to the lust of the flesh which is something we see addressed in several places of the Bible including Matthew 5:28 which says, “But I say to you, that whoever looks on a woman to lust after her has committed adultery with her already in his heart“. In the case of lusting after the flesh or tempting one to do so, each gender plays a role.

We are given specific gender related instruction throughout the Bible regarding attire that is pleasing to God. From what I understand of clothing and attraction is that men can be stimulated by what they see. I am equally aware that the female body was created for man’s enjoyment and vice versa. We can read Song of Solomon to understand the delight that a man receives from looking upon and interacting with the female body.

In a marriage between a husband and wife, it is completely lawful for a man to become excited and aroused when he gazes upon his wife. It is God’s desire that he experience these affection in this context. It is equally lawful for a women to stimulate these desires in her husband. What is not lawful is for a man to gaze on a women lustfully who is not his wife, even so that the Bible provides a remedy for those who are not able to withhold themselves from doing so.

Matthew 5:29 And if thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell.

God did not miss the mark in regards to how we ought to deal with our gender specific temptations. He gave specific instructions to men and specific instructions to women. God created man to have a visual and physical attraction to women just as he created women to have a desire to be noticed and appreciated. In an effort to get noticed women have forsaken the precepts of God.

Dressing modestly is a command given by God and directed toward women specifically because He already knew that as a direct result of our sinful nature, we would try and use our physical attributes to fulfill our desire for attention. Satan is crafty and knows of the sinful nature that resides within each of us. He knows about the desires within us and his primary goal is to take those desires and use them for evil.

I’m not writing to condemn or convince anyone today — what you wear is your business! If you do dress immodestly here are some thing that I’d like for you to consider.

The decision to dress modestly goes far beyond what we wear on the outside. Dressing modestly is merely an outward expression of a inward decision to live a life set apart for God. Women who choose to dress modestly have made a choice that expresses God’s desire.

  • Christian women who dress immodestly either don’t know what message they are conveying or they don’t care.

  • Christian women who dress immodestly either don’t know that they are assisting men in sin or they don’t care.

I have been guilty of this myself both knowingly and unknowingly. You can read about when I made my choice to dress modestly.

So to answer the question at hand — the reason it seems as though the responsibility of modesty lies on the shoulders of women is because it does. We as women are more susceptible to using or sexuality or body parts to get attention. We see it every day in the media. It is the women who primarily way more immodest than men. We see 90% more nude or inappropriately dressed women on television than men and the same is true in real life.

Each of us has to make an individual choice to live modest lives. Men must choose to turn away from that which is immodest and women must refrain from dressing immodestly.

 

Three Key Areas to Focus on When Praying for Your Husband

In 2008, I took on a personal challenge to begin a habit of praying for my husband daily.

Throughout the challenge, I have found that busyness, distractions and lack of focus is what most often prevented me from praying for him everyday.

I had some valid reasons why I was not able to get it done each day. Some of those reasons such as cooking, cleaning, home schooling, laundry and parenting to name a few. I am not trying to be sarcastic. I seriously had a ton of things to do each day.

All of them are on my to-do list vying for my attention. Since I knew that these responsibilities could not be neglected I had to be diligent in making sure not to neglect the most important ones.

It was important for me to form a habit of praying for my husband. I knew he had some God given responsibilities of his own and the best way I knew to help him be successful was to pray.

There were three specific areas I wanted to focus my prayers on.

1. Strength to be an Ambassador for the Kingdom of God.

The world outside of my home is quite different from the one inside. My husband does not work with a large number of Christians, which can in essence affect his spiritual walk. People, who lie, cheat and openly reject God surround him throughout his workday. These are the people that we as Christian’s minister to and in the process of doing that, the soul of our husbands can become weary.

His job is not just a place for him to earn a living; it is also his mission field. He has an obligation to God to keep his Christian character unaffected negatively by the depravity of the world. In order for my husband to be a powerful light for God, I must be praying with him, for him and even for his co-workers regularly.

2. Ability to stand firm in his resolute faithfulness to his marital vows.

Proverbs 7:21 With much fair speech she caused him to yield, with the flattering of her lips she forced him.

I pray that my husband is able to stand firm in his faithfulness in marriage to me and to God. Even if you have no fear or worry of your husband committing an infidelity it doesn’t hurt to pray for him to have possess wisdom in interactions with women. I pray that he has the discernment to see when a woman’s motives are less than pure.

3. Physical Protection and Strength.

I Peter 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:

My husband works very hard to provide for our family. The work it self can be tiring in and of it’s self, but there are certain dangers that he faces in his line of work. For that reason, I pray that the shield of Johovah Nissi covers him as he is at work.

There are many reasons to pray diligently and regularly for our husbands so many that it would take to much time to name them all.

What other areas do you think are important when praying for husbands?

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It’s Time To Be Delivered From People

Are you overly concerned with what people think and say about you?

I know that it can be extremely hard to overlook the opinions of our peers, competitors and naysayers especially when such a strong desire to fit in resides in our hearts.

But today I want to help you move beyond placing so much value on what people think about you and put more focus on what GOD says about you.

One thing I’ve learned is that you can never please everyone nor will you ever get everyone to like you. My husband tells me to be mindful in the use of the words ever, always and never because they are so absolute in their description. Without proper evidence, the use of  any of these words could be an exaggeration

For example, when one says to their spouse, “You never put your clothes away when you take them off” what they are implying is that every single time the spouse takes off their clothes, they leave them out. Many of us use the words never, ever and always when referring to something that someone does or doesn’t do very often. And if we are really honest, we really don’t mean always or never as in ever. We will often use these words to exaggerate our point.

Howver, today I am using the word never and it will not be an exaggeration.

When it comes to pleasing people you will NEVER….and I do mean NEVER…be able to please everyone.

This is one bitter pill that you’ll just have to swallow.

There will ALWAYS be someone who doesn’t like your…..or the way you….or what you……..

It’s inevitable. But how do we deliver ourselves from wanting to be accepted by people? Well for one we need to stop being so Self Centered and begin to be Jesus Centered. Colossians 3:2

When we are Jesus centered we are not concerned with how we will appear to man, but more-so how we will appear in the eyes of Jesus.

When we are Jesus centered, we are not caught up in trying to do what will make our friends happy. We are completely focused on what will make God happy.

Not only is this self-centeredness becoming the case in real life, but it’s also becoming and issue amongst bloggers. Bloggers are admitting that they are not writing their hearts desire for fear of what someone will say about what they’ve written. Now let’s be clear….I am not referring to back lash from a controversial post. Nor am I referring to a post where someone is attacking a gender, religion, race, demographic or otherwise. That’s not what I’m referring too. Most people who right such posts are expecting to get judged and criticized by their peers.

What I am talking about is bloggers who will write, delete, re-write, edit, delete, re-write and then trash a post out of fear of how people will respond to it. They don’t trash the posts because they fear that it won’t please God. NO….They trash the post because of what people will think of them. They trash the post because of what people will say about them.

The same is true of real life. How many time have your reconsidered how to style your hair or what to decided to wear all because of what people would say or think?

It’s a new year and it’s time to be Delivered From People.

Yes I know, it’s easier said than done. But the fact of the matter is that until you are delivered, you won’t be able to live at your full potential. Fear of acceptance will cause you to hide your gifts and talents out of fear of what people will think and say.

God has given you the unique ability to offer a specific gift or talent to the body of Christ. It is when we cover that gift out of earthly fear, that we make the power of God null and void in our lives.

Don’t think for a minute that I don’t struggle with the same issues of acceptance, because I do. But what I do in response to those feelings is what is making me a stronger believer. When the fear of being criticized by my peers fills my heart and mind, I ask good for HIS direction. I ask him to tell me if the thing I am planning to write, do, wear or say will bring HIM glory. It is then that I am filled with the faith of God in spite of my fears. So what are some tips for overcoming people? I’m so glad you asked.

  • PRAY– Ask God what he thinks about anything you are planning to do is the best way to be delivered from the opinions of people.
  • READ THE BIBLE – Search for scriptures that will give you courage to face the opinions of people. One of my favorite verses is Jeremiah 1:8 which says, “Be not afraid of their faces: for I am with thee to deliver thee, saith the LORD.”
  • EXERCISE YOUR FAITH – Act on what God has revealed to you in His word and through prayer. Walk in confidence by having the faith and courage to do what He has encouraged you to do.

I pray that this post has been a blessing to you and if so consider supporting me by commenting, sharing it with a friend and/or subscribing to my blog. Subscribing is simple click the ‘Subscribe to our feed’ tab on my sidebar.

Be Blessed,
Saidah @ A Proverbs Wife

I Am My Husband’s “Good Thing”

Becoming Our Husband's "Good Thing"

We at times forget how much our husbands need us. Sometimes we can get so wrapped up in our children, our home, our blogs and life in general that we forget to get around to being his “help meet”.

We often have good intentions when we fill our days with this and that. We may even believe that if our calendars are filled with activities and our to-do lists are a mile long that we are being good wives.

However, it is just the opposite. A good wife is sensitive to her husbands needs above everyone else’s.She is concerned even to the point of clearing her schedule when he needs her, if possible. A wife who has a heart for her husband will purposely schedules time in her day for him.

She does not put her children’s desires, requests or agenda before her husbands. what your children want you to do shouldn’t come before what your husband needs you to do. Nor should where your children want to go come before where your husband needs for you to go. Fear not ladies —  your children will know that they are loved and cared for even if they don’t receive 100% of your energy, time and attention. Nor will a godly husband put any selfish needs before his children.

When we place our husbands as a major priority in our lives we are teaching our children biblical family order. A good wife seeks to please her husband and adhere to her husbands wishes above all other earthly beings.(Ephesians 5:22-24)

One of the major drawbacks of neglecting to make our husbands a priority, is withdrawal. How many times have we all mis-prioritized and found that our husbands had withdrawn from us? They sought us but we were too busy. (Song of Solomon 5:2-6) They needed us, yet we were not there.

Because they are so strong, we forget how much our husbands need us. Because they rarely, if ever cry, we forget that they are vulnerable.

In an effort to be that “good thing’’ referred to in Proverbs 18:22; let us make a conscience effort to make our spouses a priority this week.