A friend, emailed me this article/devotional entry from world challenge, and I want to share it with all of you. This entry speaks to the spiritual attack that is at the root of so many failing marriages and it reminds us that our real weapon is PRAYER!
Let us take this seriously and begin to pray. But not just once or twice....Let us begin to wield the ONE AND ONLY weapon that will actually help us defeat the things coming against our marriages and fast, pray-fervently, and never cease going to the LORD for the answers we need!
Thursday, March 27, 2014
Wednesday, March 5, 2014
How many people do you have in your life that speak life, encouragement, and belief over you? I have a few and I am so thankful that God has given me those people...But there were years and years when I honestly needed them the most, that I had none. And my husband had no one either. To this day, I am not really sure who those people are for my husband, but I know that he has one....
That one is intentional, that one does it on purpose, that one believes in the power of speaking life over him...that one is ME.
Some of you might think that it is irrelevant to you to speak life over your husband because he isn't worthy of your kind words or affirmation, or because he has hurt you too much. It is relevant...and I am living proof that it is possible for a person to humble themselves to the point of encouraging the very person who hurts them the most.
See, I would pray things for myself and my husband all the time..."God, make him love me"
"God, help him become the leader of our home"
"God, help him to be a better man and run after you"
"God, make or marriage strong"
Unfortunately, because of the pain that had been mounting for years, even when Ray did make small steps forward into the things I prayed for, it was never good enough...I didn't see it as the answer to prayer that it was, and I certainly never praised him or affirmed him.
Have you ever heard of self fulfilling prophecy? The urban dictionary defines it as this...
Positive or negative expectations about circumstances, events, or people that may affect a persons behavior toward them in a manner that he or she (unknowingly) creates situations in which those expectations are fulfilled.
In other words, causing something to happen by believing it will come true
When I began to realize the power of the words I speak, I began to change how I spoke to my husband. See, the longer I spoke failure, frustration, and disappointment over Ray, the longer I saw him live a life of a frustrated, disappointed, Failure. He believed he was those things, thus he acted as one of those people.
But when the Lord got ahold of my heart, showed me the power of my tongue, and challenged me to not only pray for the man I wanted Ray to become, but speak that over and about him, I began to see change in the way my husband acted.
Am I asking you to lie? No!
Am I asking you to speak things that are manipulative? NO, I think your husband will see through that anyway!
Here is what I did...Remember some of those prayers I was praying?
That Ray would love me...Even when it was the tiniest thing..If it spoke love on any level, I would thank him and tell him that it made me feel loved.
That Ray would be the leader of our home...This one makes me laugh, because of how wrong I got it for so long. I am embarrassed to say that while I prayed for this, I would never let Ray do it, I was too busy being in control. But, as the Lord began to convict me for this, I began to let Ray make more decisions for our family, I began to ask his opinion more often, and when he did take leadership roles on, not only would I get out of the way, I would praise him for the great job he did do. Now...another embarrassing confession....I still have to work REALLY hard on this one, because of the natural born leader I am, it takes a lot of work for me to let my husband lead, but with God's help. I am getting better one step at a time...
That Ray would be a better man and run after God...When I see Ray spending time with the Lord, I feel safe, and it is the most attractive thing to me...SO I TELL HIM!
When ray does things that are full of integrity, are thoughtful, or generous, I praise the living daylights out of him. Now ladies, don't tell me your husbands never do these things!! They are not pure evil, and most likely you are married to a good man, who just has some real struggles. So find those things, you won't have to dig as hard as you think, as long as you are asking the Lord to help you see them. It is all about letting Jesus open your eyes to the good things about your husband.
If you are thinking...I am not going to do this, he doesn't deserve it!!
Let me tell you the results I saw..I saw a man who was covered in shame and felt like a failure, begin to gain confidence again. He began to think that the traits I pointed out, were part of who he really was. The more I believed in him, the more he believed in himself. The more I loved him...The more he began to truly love me. I know it will take some dying to yourself, and it won't always feel natural, but I promise you the results are worth it. The prayers you pray, and the man you dream of will start to become reality if you speak those things over and to him. The more negativity you speak, the more negative results you will have, but as you speak life, you will see the Lord bring life back into your marriage. The things you speak...have power. Self fulfilling prophecy is not a joke, it even biblical. The things you speak over your spouse will be the things you reap in your marriage. Here are some verses to help you along the way!
The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit. ~Proverbs 18:21
And Jesus answered them, “Have faith in God. Truly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and thrown into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says will come to pass, it will be done for him. Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. ~Mark 11:2-24
Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it. ~Matthew 10:39
For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. The good person out of his good treasure brings forth good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure brings forth evil. I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak. ~Matthew 12:35-36