Have you ever stopped to consider the brick and mortar of the home? What builds a family to last through generations? We know engineers use specifics and design to ensure that concrete buildings withstand the test of time, tornados, and troubles but what’s the requirements for a home to stand through the storms of life? These are the questions I’ve been pondering as I pray for my family.
I do a lot of praying for my family, but always feel like I should be praying more. Praying reminds me that this home is not built by my hands, but by God’s hand alone. There are times when my prayers are about the daily challenges and struggles, but most often I am asking God what our family will look like in three generations, five generations, or more.
I’m often wondering what the future holds.
Will anyone know my name five generations from now?
What trials they will have to face?
How much mercy and goodness will follow them?
It’s not my name that I want generations from now to know; it’s my God that I want them to know. God has done incredible and magnificent things in my life. I often consider my choices based off of how this might look if it’s spoken of when I’m gone. It’s my desire to live intentionally today so that I can leave a crumb trail of God’s mercy behind me, so generations yet to be born can benefit from the truth, “His mercy endureth forever.”
I don’t desire for any grandbabies or great-grandbabies to have my name, but I beg God they will have His engraved on their hearts. I’ve always told the children as they grew, “Go love God more than I do. Be a better parent, a better wife, a better friend.” I don’t want them to be the same or less.
I want the brick and mortar of our family to grow stronger and stronger with each generation.
The brick and mortar of the Home
Layer upon layer each generation builds the family home.
Faith, Love, Patience, Long-suffering, Sacrifice, Hope, Kindness, Gentleness, Forgiveness, Repentance, Hard-work, and the list could go on and on.
Imagine each of these characteristics as bricks and God’s Spirit as the mortar that holds all our feeble attempts together. Consider how marriage is the second foundational layer of the home (the first foundation layer being each relationship with Christ).
The foundation in our family contains some crumbling bricks, unset mortar, and unsecured shallow foundations. I guess we are no different than anyone else.
I am often reminded of the verse found in Proverbs.
Proverbs: 14:1, “Every wise woman buildeth her house: but the foolish plucketh it down with her hands.”
It’s foolish for us to think that our thoughts, words, or actions are neutral. I’ve had this conversation with many women, “Is what I eat for breakfast really that important?” Well, yes. It feeds your body, which fuels you for the day.
God often reveals the subtle ways I’ve ripped my home apart.
There have been times my hands were guilty of destroying because they were idle, and other times they killed because they were too busy. There have been times I allowed my words to break the hearts of those who listened, and times I failed in remaining silent.
No matter what the situation in front of us, we are wise when we understand the gravity of our choices and how we can use them to propel ourselves, our marriages, and our homes forward.
We build a home, brick upon brick, layer upon layer, and precept upon precept.
Three steps to a proven building plan:
- Check the foundation of your home first by checking the depth of your relationship with Christ.
- Evaluate your marriage and ensure that you are joint heirs together in the grace of life. If not, pray for your spouse. Be an example of God’s love and watch and wait with anticipation at all that God can do.
- Consider your parenting. It’s not your job to show your children a perfect parent. No. You must teach them how to live as forgiven Sinners.
Friends, there will be trials in life and plain old ugly sin that will come in and tear down what’s been built. None of us are escaping this life without trials. So let’s be intentional to respond to them with grace and courage that only comes from Christ.
Homes that thrive aren’t homes that escaped the trials or had no troubles. They aren’t the homes where people made all the right choices. No, homes that thrive are homes that God blessed through humble sinners who did their best.
Let our homes be a testimony on the greatness of God not boasting on us.
With much love,
Mrs. Joseph Wood
Intimacy in the Christian marriage, part 4 is as important as the first three posts in this series. Quite often, women ask me, “What do I do when I don’t feel like being intimate, and he does?”
You’ve battled toddlers with tummy bugs, cleaned up the bathroom floor more times than you can count, had unexpected tasks that demanded your attention, not to mention, the laundry baskets that are overflowing and the sink is somewhere under a pile of dishes.
You’re still in the fight. You’ve determined that you’re going to accomplish the primary survival tasks for the day and go to bed with a clean house and happy family!
You plop yourself down in bed exhausted. Then it happens, you hear your husband’s request for intimacy. (Let’s be honest, you know what is on his mind before he even said a word.)
You’re at a crossroad.
How will you respond?
What do we do when we don’t feel like being intimate?
First, know this, chances are we’ve all been there at least once before. It’s not just exhaustion that gets us; it’s hormones, stress, medical issues, and the list could go on. Here are my three best tips to help you navigate those situations of intimacy.
Don’t let your marriage bed be the last thing on your mind. Instead, start the day with intimacy in mind. Make sure your commitments won’t interrupt this time with your spouse.
If there are areas of concern that keep you from feeling connected to your husband. Commit those to prayer and talk with others who can join you in prayer and support.
Communication is a HUGE component of intimacy. It’s essential that you communicate your needs to your husband and that he can communicate his needs with you. If you know you won’t be available for sexual intimacy, share that information with your spouse before the lights go off, so he’s aware of how you’re feeling.
What Does God Have to Say About Intimacy?
These tips don’t guarantee you won’t ever have this experience. Hopefully, what they do is help you navigate them successfully. As with so many other areas of marriage, intimacy is about each party esteeming the other person more than themselves. It’s about both parties remembering the sacredness of intimacy shared in marriage.
With that said, it’s vital that we don’t deny our spouse of this time of intimacy without careful consideration. In fact, the Scriptures say
1.Corinthians 7:4 “Defraud ye not one the other, except it, be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer, and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency.”
What’s interesting to me about this passage is that it uses the word, ‘defraud”. This word comes from the Greek word, apostero, which means to defraud, spoil, or rob. Oh, how many marriages we see in this state of spoilage!
Defrauding Our Spouses
Take a moment to think on this.
When we consider the actual meaning of this word, defraud, we can see the danger in not being honest with one another through intimacy. Maybe you’ve never done this. Perhaps you have and you’ve just never thought of it as defrauding your spouse. Here are some examples to consider.
- Pretending you’re asleep.
- Spoiling Intimacy by participating with a poor attitude.
- Robbing our spouse in intimacy because He didn’t do something we wanted him to do.
Chances are we can see dangers of defrauding our spouse through intimacy. Some of these dangers come as obvious and substantial issues; others are small and subtle yet just as destructive.
We can not deny the fact that healthy marriages include two individuals who cheerfully make themselves available to the other person.
We also know that we can’t do anything good on our own. Our marriages are a result of God’s goodness through us, not ours. Let’s not be deceived into thinking that we are the ones that create a delightful marriage bed. That is only a work that the Lord can do.
Keep your eyes on the Lord, seek His protection for your marriage bed, so that, Satan tempts us not for our inconsistency.
Remember, walk in patience and unity in Intimacy. There is much instruction for couples about being in agreement about finances, child training, or other life situations yet they fail to discuss the importance of unity in intimacy. If you didn’t have this conversation before marriage, it’s not too late to have it now.
I’m praying for our marriages. May God be glorified through them!
Until our next chat,
Mrs. Joseph Wood
We’ve been talking about Intimacy in the Christian and How then should we behave. As I started this series, it was vital for me to answer the most common questions I get asked. Today, I am addressing an aspect that can be uncomfortable to discuss yet puts a strain on many Christian Marriages. Today’s topic: Pornography.
Remember when we discussed how we should behave, and I mentioned that we were to put 1 Peter 2:9 into action? Let’s examine this verse again.
1 Peter 2:9 But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light;
Pornography has no part in the Christian Marriage. Let us be aware and alert, pornography is part of the darkness spoken of in this passage.
Pornography will undermine the foundation of your marriage. Remember, Proverbs 19:14? A prudent wife is from the Lord. Let’s take a look at the definition of prudent, “acting with or showing care and thought for the future.” We must consider what we are allowing in this area of intimacy.
When I talk to women about this subject, finding common ground on the devastating impact of pornography isn’t the issue. The issue most often comes down to the fact that either the husband or the wife (Yes, wives struggle in this area too!) are struggling with the shame and addiction of pornography. It has impacted their relationship to such a depth that often the very foundation of their marriage is crumbling!
Many times they know that what they are doing is not shewing “forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light;” Yet, they are unclear how to develop thoughts that are Biblically accurate.
First, let me say that if it is your spouse that struggles in this area, there is Hope!
God reminds us that all sin leads to death. You can pray for your spouse and this issue of pornography just like you would want your spouse to pray for your struggle with gossip, slothfulness, or not honoring your parents.
Secondly, I would encourage you to show respect for your husband while you remain pure in your conduct. Even unsaved husbands can be won to the Lord, not by our words, but by our behavior. We have a great responsibility to the Lord for how we behave!
1 Peter 3:1 Likewise, wives, be subject to your own husbands, so that even if some do not obey the word, they may be won without a word by the conduct of their wives, when they see your respectful and pure conduct
Lastly, I want to encourage you to be patient. Overcoming sin in our lives can take time. It’s God that does the restoration work. We know we can’t do anything good on our own. It is God alone that will complete the good work that He has begun. We must be confident in His ability and His timing!
Philippians 1:6 Being confident of this very thing, that He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:
Five Tips To Overcome Pornography Within The Christian Marriage:
- Confess! You must first acknowledge that pornography is a sin.
- Create a system of accountability in your life with people you can trust and be transparent with
- Remove all temptation as you can, but remember attractions will always present themselves. It’s how we respond to those temptations that is critical! Make sure you turn the other way!
- Read, Study, and Apply the Word every day. It is only God’s Word that is promised not to return void!
- Repent day by day! If you fall, don’t stay there.. get back up and strive to do right!
I know that in the midst of the struggle, our confidence can tire. Often these personal struggles remain unspoken until they have taken a toll on the marriage altogether. Don’t isolate yourself!
Hear me clearly, “Do not let the shame of sin keep you from overcoming sin!”
You are not alone!! Dear friend, do not grow weary in well doing! Get connected with women who will support you to love your husband in a way that shews forth His praises.
Do you have specific questions about this topic? Then take a moment to jot me a note. I would love to hear from you and answer questions as the Lord leads.
Because of His Love,
Mrs. Joseph Wood
Last week we started our series, Intimacy in the Christian Marriage. I am writing this series as one Sister to another. I am confident that we could discuss the husband’s vital role in marriage, but I’ll leave that for someone else to do. (more…)
Intimacy in the Christian marriage must be a subject I get asked about most. There’s a good reason for that. It is such a vital aspect of marriage and yet, the “older women” who were to teach the younger women how to love their husbands, and children have remained silent on the topic. Their silence has caused many to seek council apart from those that know Truth. We need to step up and help in this area. No matter how “old” we are, we are probably an “older” woman to someone.
So let’s see if I can help bring our attention back to Truth for the answers on intimacy in the Christian marriage.
There are so many personal factors that go into a subject like this. It usually’s best as a conversation one on one with each other. I will have to answer “generally” and pray that God uses this post to help you experience the beauty of intimacy that He created!
Intimacy: God is not silent.
God cares deeply about His people experiencing the pleasure of intimacy between husband and wife.
We were created to glorify God, and while it may seem odd to some or uncomfortable at first, we most definitely can glorify God in the marriage bed.
So, what does God have to say on this subject? How do we glorify Him in this area of our lives?
God has plenty to say!
It all started in Genesis!
Genesis 1: 27-28 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.
The Holy Bible: King James Version. (2009). (Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version., Ge 1:27–28). Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.
Genesis 2:18 And the Lord God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.
The Holy Bible: King James Version. (2009). (Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version., Ge 2:18). Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.
Intimacy in the Christian Marriage
Intimacy in the Christian Marriage is not merely a physical act. It’s about a spiritual and emotional connection as well!
God established the union of marriage between a man and woman from the very beginning. It is God’s plan for one man and one woman to be joined in marriage. This marriage is the establishment of a family unit in which children will be born and raised for His glory. However, that wasn’t his only purpose of creating this union! If you examine Scripture, you’ll see that God provides comfort through intimacy in marriage (Isaac comforted by Rebekah. Genesis 24:67). Other passages talk to us about the delight of intimacy (Song of Solomon 7:6-12), and others warn us of neglecting this area of our marriage.
1 Corinthians 7:5 Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency
The Holy Bible: King James Version. (2009). (Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version., 1 Co 7:5). Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.
Our faith should be seen in the intimate moments with our spouse.
God created us to “know” each other through this intimate act of marriage on a regular basis. So then, how does it become something beautiful and Holy when the World seems to have made it merely an act of human instinct with no rules, no boundaries, and its only purpose is self-satisfaction?
Friends intimacy becomes a Holy experience only when we direct our hearts to God. Yes, even thru the intimate moments between husband and wife.
When we turn off the lights, we don’t turn off our faith.
I have spoken to far too many women who have neglected this Truth in their marriage. For one reason or another, they find themselves incorporating the World’s ideas in their bedroom only to see themselves heartbroken and their marriages falling apart. Friends, we must allow God to rule our hearts and thoughts especially within the intimacy of our marriages.
Boy, there’s a lot for us to talk about on this topic isn’t there?! Make sure you send your specific questions to me, and I will include them anonymously in this series.
Here are a few questions that have already come in that we’ll be tackling in this series.
- “How are we to behave in this most intimate time of marriage?”
- “What is okay and what’s not okay in the marriage bed?” (This is probably the question that is asked of me most.)
- “How do I help my husband who struggles with pornography?” (Second most asked question)
- What if I don’t “feel” like being intimate with my husband?”
Are these a few of the questions you’ve had? Do you have other questions? Make sure you send me a message, and I will try to include your question in our series as well.
Join me for Intimacy in the Christian Marriage Part 2 on Monday.
With much love,
Mrs. Joseph Wood
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