Tag Archives: Bride

The Power of We

Today is Blog Action Day, which may not sound like a big deal to you…or maybe you’re wondering what it is exactly.  Well Blog Action Day started in 2007.  It brings together bloggers from different countries, interests and languages to blog about one important global topic on the same day, and this year the topic is “The Power of We.”

After a four, seven-step series (The Love Extinguishers, The Love Kindlers, The 7 Steps to Ending an Affair, and Rebuilding After an Affair) and after having a week-long hospital visit interrupt the well-laid plans of mice and men, I thought it might be nice to write blogs for the rest of this month that are just from my heart, topics with which I see people struggling, or topics sharing about us and our life and our reconciliation after an affair.  Today, with Blog Action Day’s topic of “The Power of We” I thought it would be appropriate to offer some thoughts on being unity or on the same team with your spouse, and to offer some thoughts on the people and other bloggers without whom I just COULD NOT do this!

The first “Power of We” that I’d like to discuss is the power a marriage can gain when the husband and wife are united by being Christians.  When both the husband and the wife are part of the consecrated Bride, set apart for God‘s glory, then both of them will be pursuing one thing: pleasing God.  In many, MANY verses the apostles asked us (Christ‘s Bride) to be united:

1 Peter 3:8
“Finally, all of you, have unity of mind, sympathy, brotherly love, a tender heart, and a humble mind.”

Philippians 2:2
“Complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind.”

As Christ’s Bride, The Church, both the husband and the wife would be living a life that is worthy of the gospel, and the way we LIVE would be a mirror to those around us of the holiness of God.

Philippians 1:27
“Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel”

So how does a man and a woman become “of one mind” when one is an Introvert and the other is an Extrovert?  How are spouses supposed to be united when one is a Thinker and one is a Feeler?  They just aren’t alike!  Here’s how (peek at Romans 12:2)…by not going along with and being like “the world” but by being TRANSFORMED so that our minds become more and more and more like GOD’S mind!!  We are supposed to have the mind of Christ.

NOTE: even the verses above mention some of the ways that our minds would be changing: by developing “sympathy, brotherly love, a tender heart, and humility” according to 1 Peter 3:8 and by having the same love (Love of GOD) in Philippians 2:2!   But want to see something AMAZING?  Look at the very next verse, Phillipians 2:3

Philippians 2:3
“Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.”

So often in marriages, and especially when there’s been an affair, one of the spouse’s thinks something like: “Well my needs aren’t being met.  I need more affection!  He never talks to me anymore.  She isn’t interested in sex.  I can’t remember the last time they complimented me!”  Where is that focus?  It’s a rivalry isn’t it?  Instead of being a united marriage, it’s Spouse A vs. Spouse B in a royal rumble!  And rather than focusing on humility or being sympathetic toward the tough things in your spouse’s life or being gentle and tender when they make a mistake…it’s become HIM against HER.

God has a plan for marriages.  The plan is “The Power of We.”  The husband and the wife are to be His Bride and be united to Him pursuing His mind.  And the husband and wife are a mirror to the world of what that unity to God looks like, by being united themselves.  He says:

Genesis 2:24
“Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh”

This does include sex–sure of course it does!  But it also includes things like not letting your mom tell your wife she doesn’t cook right!  It includes the wife turning to her husband when she is sad, and not her mom.  It includes backing up your husband in front of the kids when he says something to them (“Did your dad tell you no?  You know I back your dad”)  and if you do think he’s wrong you speak to your spouse privately and explain your reasons, and if they change their mind, then THEY announce the change and why.  It includes doing fun things together.  It includes doing work together.  It includes having an attitude of US on the same page, doing things together as a team, and we’ve got each other’s backs.  After an affair, reconciliation begins when the spouses are a “we” again, because there is Power in We.

The second “Power of We” that I’d like to discuss is the power of working with a group of associates.  I have learned, over the course of my blogging career (lol), that there are  the people and other bloggers without whom I just COULD NOT do this blog and this whole website.  Together, we all minister in our own ways for better marriages, and we are all more effective because we work together.   So my hat tips to these folks:

Christian Marriage Bloggers Association:  You know I started with this group when it was pretty small–and from this group I’ve found mentors and been a mentor.  We’ve shared group topics (like writing about “50 Shades of Grey” and my own “50 Shades and Infidelity–There is a Connection!“), and challenges.  And always these brothers and sisters in Christ continue pursuing godly marriages in their writing and encouraging each other.  I love this group and learn more as part of this association than with any other.

I’m going to mention a few of the newer bloggers I’ve just met recently, in hopes of “paying it forward” a little for them, and in hopes of encouraging them to continue writing:

The Alabaster Jar – Jolene has a wonderful, personal writing style and is very gentle, but extremely biblically accurate.  She’s not afraid to tackle the tough topics either.  She’s pretty much who I hope to be when my blog grows up.

Auntie Em’s Guide To Life — Okay maybe it’s just me, but Auntie Em cracks me up.  I don’t feel like I’m such a dork when I read her blog because she writes like she lives in my life.

Becoming His Eve — I love Hannah.  She is a newer married person and it reminds me so much of what it was like to be relatively newly married and all the things you face in those first years.

Cassandra’s Marriage Mints Ministry — I used to wonder why Cassandra’s blog was called “Marriage Mints” but if you read her blog you’ll understand.  She is cool and smooth in her writing, and yet full of zest … just like a mint.

Hot, Holy & Humorous — “J” is another blogger who just cracks me up.  I guess I should clarify that means that their enthusiasm and energy makes me smile big, full-face smiles.  Her approach is Bigger-than-Dallas, face those issues HEAD ON, and she does not back down from anything.   Ever.

My Beloved Is Mine! (SongSix3) — Jason and Tiffani remind me so much of my Dear Hubby and I just a few years ago (you know…before the kids moved out and we “got old”).  They have been inspiring friends moreso behind the scenes but I’d definitely tip my hat their way!

PeacefulWife’s Blog — Okay I don’t know any other way to say this: here is a woman who knows what she’s talking about.  Listen to her.  I used to be a disrespectful wife myself, and Peaceful is ON THE MONEY.  If only I could have learned this while I was younger it would have helped SO MUCH.   Plus, her vlogs are fun to watch 😉

Pearl’s OysterBed — You know I can’t put my finger on what it is about Pearl.  Maybe it’s because I’m a huge Jimmy Buffett fan and hula girl at heart.  But she puts me at ease even when addressing a difficult topic, and I just like her stuff.

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On Facebook I’ve met several invaluable associates as well.  In particular, I’d like to mention:

I want a Godly marriage — I learn more just from their little status quote and tweets than I do from most folks.  You have GOT to follow them.  No…I mean it.

A Proverbs Wife — It’s one thing to read Proverbs 31 and quite another to live it…and she’ll help you live it day by day.

Marriage Works! — It’s weird, I haven’t as much gotten into their website and whatnot, but I get their statuses on FB every day all day, and again I just learn about having a great marriage.

Making Love in the Microwave — Okay I love this lady!  Her name is Aja and I think I found her when she was relatively new.  But are you one of those time-crunched, two-earner families with kids who have activities?  Yeah–she’ll show you how you can STILL make love even when all the time you have is a few nuclear seconds.

Ruby Wives — A good wife is more valuable than rubies, but who teaches regular women like you and I how to be that kind of wife?  Why Ruby Wives!  Every day I get statuses from them that are helpful that I can put into action today.

Happily Ever After: A Positive Image of Black Marriage — This is Lamar and Ronnie Tyler, and they are into EVERYTHING– Twitter, FB, blogging, podcasting, TV, movies…you name it!  But what they provide is invaluable: an image of black marriage that is something people can LOOK UP TO and admire.  Personally every Wednesday they host a chat at 6pm PT/9pm ET called #marriagechat.  I usually attend and HIGHLY recommend it!!

More Precious Than Rubies — I love these women and sadly they are the only ones I know who are working this ministry.  They train regular women like you or I to reach out to and minister to the women who are in the sex industry (for example, strippers).  Now I realize this isn’t everyone’s cuppa tea, but these ladies help us remember that women who sometimes “get stuck” in the sex industry are our mothers, aunts, sisters, daughters, lovers and the dearly beloved daughters of the Most High God who may not have had someone reach out a hand in love…yet.

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Finally I most assuredly would not be who I am today without one forum:

Talk About Marriage: Coping with Infidelity Forum — I actually hang out here.  I answer PMs and try to reply on threads, and I write quite a bit in the Private Forums.  So I don’t do it as a “business generator” — I do it because it is SO NEEDED.   Infidelity is so painful, so confusing, and so counter-intuitive that someone has to do it, right?  So I’m there on that forum every day and my user name is just what you’d expect: “Affaircare.”  Come say and discover the “Power of We” being with others who understand what you are going through.

This is post #15 of the Ultimate Blog Challenge!

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I also join this Godly Link-up on Mondays:

The Alabaster Jar
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Crossing the Line…

Lots of times people ask questions like this: “Is having a friend of the opposite sex wrong?” or “What about chatting and texting all hours of the day and night? It’s just chitchat—is that okay?” “Is sexting really an affair?  It’s just flirting, it’s not physical and it’s just words!” or “How about cybersex.  I mean it’s not like we had REAL sex!  Is that crossing the line?”  

Have you heard those kinds of questions?  It’s as if the people asking the question want to go RIGHT UP TO THE LINE of doing the wrong thing, but not cross the line.  Many of these questions come up precisely BECAUSE we have an incorrect view of what fidelity and sex even ARE!  If you think of sex as “doing things to myself (or using someone else) physically which result in an amazing physical sensation and relaxing release” … well it does do those things but that’s like the tiny tip of the iceberg of what sex is meant to be!  Likewise, as we’ve already discussed in the blog “Fidelity is not asking ‘How Far Can I Go?’ ” faithfulness (fidelity) is “devotion to a person or duties: allegiance , constancy , fealty , loyalty…the state of loyalty and devotion to obligations, duties, and observances that are owed to a certain person (namely your spouse).”  In our marriages, we are supposed to reflect Christ‘s marriage to His Bride, the Church.  This is why husbands have federal headship over their wives–to reflect God‘s headship over Christ and Christ’s headship over His bride, the Church!  Further, when a wife is submissive to her husband, she is directly demonstrating a living example of how Christ was submissive to God and how we (the Church) are in submission to Christ! 

Taken in that context, where our marriages reflect Christ and His Church–did Christ come as the Son of God, with all the authority and glory of God in the flesh, and say “Hey everybody!  I’m GOD!  Serve me!”??  Or did He demonstrate a servant heart, even to the point of laying down his life in obedience, saying “I am indeed God but I’m going to act in a way that obeys God and is for your best interest, not self-centeredly focused on my own”??  If our marriages are a mirror of Christ, then how can our sex life be “doing things to myself (or using someone else) physically which result in an amazing physical sensation and relaxing release”?  Our sex lives, as a gift of God to intimately KNOW our spouse, would have to reflect that attitude of “…I’m going to act in your best interest instead of my own…”!  Right? Our sexuality is reserved for one person with whom we are in a lifelong covenant marriage, to get to KNOW each other intimately on every level: physically, emotionally, intellectually, and spiritually.  Likewise our faithfulness to our spouse also would reflect that attitude of “…I’m going to act in a way that focuses on showing you the loyalty that is owed to you by my promise–not on what I can get away with!”  So now let’s look at those questions again, from that point of view!  

“Is having a friend of the opposite sex wrong?”  Well let’s use those two standards: Sexuality is reserved for one person with whom you are in a lifelong covenant marriage, and it is a servant’s attitude  “…acting in your spouse’s best interests (pleasures) instead of your own.”  How far can you go?  You tell me.  When we marry someone we stand before God and our families as witnesses and promise to give 100% of our affection and loyalty to that one person ONLY (forsaking all others…until death parts us).  So how far can you go before you are giving some percent of your affection to that opposite sex friend?  Or some part of you gives some loyalty to the friend and the remainder of the loyalty to your spouse?  Does this reflect an attitude of “…acting in your spouse’s best interests (pleasures) instead of your own” -OR- does it put your own selfish desires ahead of your spouse?  Then I guess you have your answer don’t you?  

See how easy it is to answer these questions when you get the right point of view!
“What about chatting and texting all hours of the day and night? It’s just chitchat—is that okay?”   Again, let’s use those two standards: Sexuality is reserved for one person with whom you are in a lifelong covenant marriage, and it is a servant’s attitude  “…acting in your spouse’s best interests (pleasures) instead of your own.”  Well again you tell me: how does chatting and texting with another person of ANY gender indicate that you’ve reserved intimate knowledge of yourself for the one person with whom you are in a lifelong covenant marriage?  How does chatting and texting with another person demonstrate acting in your spouse’s best interests and pleasures?  I don’t see how it does!  I see a self-centered focus on what makes YOU feel good or feel happy or whatever!  
There is even more to consider too.  Two of my favorite verses are I Corinthians 10:23-24 and Philippians 4:8 .  In I Corinthians 10, the apostle Paul is talking to the Church about our freedom–how we are free to eat or drink anything that God has created–but he is very clear in telling the Corinthians that not all things are BENEFICIAL and not all things are CONSTRUCTIVE.  We can use that as a pattern to determine if things “cross the line” too!  How does it benefit YOUR SPOUSE for you to chat and text with another person of any gender all hours of the day and night?  Does that kind of behavior benefit the Church–the body of Christ?  How about is it constructive?  Does chatting and texting with another person build your marriage and make it a living testimony of God’s faithfulness to us?  Is it constructive to the Body of Christ or is it another example of hypocrisy to unbelievers?  And in Philippians, the apostle Paul is nice enough to list for us the KINDS of things we should be thinking about: “…whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy…”  COOL!!  Is chatting and texting with someone all hours of the day and night true (as in “true hearted”)?  How about noble?  Is it right?  What about pure–is it pure?  Lovely?  Behavior to-be-admired?  Is texting with another person acting in a way that is excellent and worthy of praise?  
Seems like the answer is pretty clear to me!  
“Is sexting really an affair?  It’s just flirting, it’s not physical and it’s just words!”  I’ll let you do this one on your own.  But remember our criteria:
1. Intimacy (physically, emotionally, intellectually, spiritually) is reserved for one person with whom you are in a lifelong covenant marriage.  Does sexting reserve intimate knowledge of you on all those levels for only your spouse?
2.  Does it demonstrate a servant’s attitude  “…acting in your spouse’s best interests (pleasures) instead of your own”?  How would sexting be acting in your spouse’s best interests?  Isn’t the sexting focused on YOU and YOUR pleasure?  
3. Is it BENEFICIAL?  Is it CONSTRUCTIVE?   Does the sexting benefit your spouse or your marriage?  Does it benefit the Church?  Is sexting constructive to your marriage or family?  Is it constructive to the Church?  Does sexting help lead the unsaved to salvation?
4. Is it true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent or praiseworthy?   I think you get the drift by now, don’t you?  
“How about cybersex.  I mean it’s not like we had REAL sex!  Is that crossing the line?”   You know, I’m just going to remind you of our four criteria:  
1. Intimacy (physically, emotionally, intellectually, spiritually) is reserved for one person with whom you are in a lifelong covenant marriage.
2.  Does it demonstrate a servant’s attitude  “…acting in your spouse’s best interests (pleasures) instead of your own”?   
3. Is it BENEFICIAL?  Is it CONSTRUCTIVE?  (I Cor. 10:23-24)
4. Is it true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent or praiseworthy? (Phil. 4:8)  
Gentle reader, I challenge you today to change your perspective.  Rather than asking “Where is the line, so I can come RIGHT UP TO THE LINE but not cross it” I challenge you to look at your marriage, your sexuality, and what you do with others in a wholly new way: “Where is the line, so I can stay as far away from it as possible!!”