Thursday, February 28, 2013

Reasons to Keep Your Virginity Until Marriage

These are just some the reasons with for why its best to wait until marriage for sex. If you have already lost your virginity, you can renew your commitment to God and yourself to keep any further sexual activity set aside for your marriage bed.

1) Once you've lost it, you can't get it back

2) God commands you to keep sex for marriage

3) Fornication (sex before marriage) is a sin

4) Your marriage sex life will be MUCH better if you wait

5) Virginity is one of the greatest gifts you can give your future wife or husband

6) Having sex before marriage increases your risk of getting a sexually transmitted disease (Aids, Venereal Disease, Herpes, etc..)

7) Sexual intercourse causes you to be one in spirit and in flesh with another person. You will have difficulty cutting these ties to this person when you marry another person in the future.

8) Sex without the commitment of a lifetime is an empty act. It will undoubtedly fail to match the high expectations you have for it. It usually takes years to develop intimacy with your spouse, and physical intimacy in sex is closely (or intimately) related to this overall emotional & spiritual intimacy. It takes work and it takes true love. Love without the lifetime commitment is not strong enough to develop your sexual experience into God's perfect and wonderful plan for it.

9) Having sex before marriage risks pregnancy. It's one thing to have sex without the security of a lifetime commitment, but try raising children without that commitment. If the parents stick together, that helps, but nothing can substitute a child's security in knowing that his/her parents are committed to each other and aren't going to leave when things get tough.

10) Premarital sex cheapens one of God's greatest gifts to people. God, the Creator of life, gave us the privilege of being "stewards" in the creation of life. It behooves us to keep the standards that he established for sex.

Good Men Are Out There

Good men are indeed on all around us,
We pass them on streets,
In malls and hall at work,
Most we cant see because we dont know,
What a good man really looks like
He usually isnt flashy enough
Might not wear a suit or push a BMW
Not have a body like John Cena with Brad Pitt face
But as you mature, you realize its better
To find someone who's got your back
Than someone who turns your head
- Author Unknown

I read this, and it offers hope.  If anything, I have a bias that a pretty face will probably cheat on you one day.  No, I don't look for a "pretty face".  I hope to find someone who will cherish me and live side by side with me for the rest of our lives.  That nice body or pretty face will deteriorate over time.  What then, if that's all you're looking for?  

Then you ask, what is a "good man"?  I wonder if I'm even a good judge of that, since I thought my ex was "a good man".  He sure had me fooled!!!  Of course, I was very young.  I hadn't been taught how to choose a husband.  Back then, I didn't know what love was.  I thought, "As long as you have that loving feeling, you're good."  I didn't know that feeling would change.  I didn't know that love was a choice, and not an easy one.  I did learn, and adapted, but he did not.  It does take 2 to make a marriage work.  

I'm thankful for this second chance, and I plan to make it right this time, if I am to marry at all.  It's been 3 years, and have had no lasting relationships.  Seems strange?  I blame my focus on grad school and lack of time.  I've had trouble even making time for my friends at times!  I am really looking forward to May, as this will be a new season for me.  I hope and pray that God has something special planned for me.  Hey, I'm not getting any younger!!!  So, if there are truly good guys out there, bring them on!!!

A man should find a good woman. And when he finds her, he should win her heart.  Then he must earn her respect, as he cherishes her trust as long as they live. That’s the most important thing in the world.  That’s what a man is.  A man is truly a man, when he wins the love of a good woman, earns her respect, and keeps her trust. Until he does that, he’s not a man.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Do You Really Love Him?

Do You Really Love Him? | She has done a good work for Me —Mark 14:6

"If what we call love doesn’t take us beyond ourselves, it is not really love. If we have the idea that love is characterized as cautious, wise, sensible, shrewd, and never taken to extremes, we have missed the true meaning. This may describe affection and it may bring us a warm feeling, but it is not a true and accurate description of love.

Have you ever been driven to do something for God not because you felt that it was useful or your duty to do so, or that there was anything in it for you, but simply because you love Him? Have you ever realized that you can give things to God that are of value to Him? Or are you just sitting around daydreaming about the greatness of His redemption, while neglecting all the things you could be doing for Him? I’m not referring to works which could be regarded as divine and miraculous, but ordinary, simple human things—things which would be evidence to God that you are totally surrendered to Him. Have you ever created what Mary of Bethany created in the heart of the Lord Jesus? “She has done a good work for Me.”

There are times when it seems as if God watches to see if we will give Him even small gifts of surrender, just to show how genuine our love is for Him. To be surrendered to God is of more value than our personal holiness. Concern over our personal holiness causes us to focus our eyes on ourselves, and we become overly concerned about the way we walk and talk and look, out of fear of offending God. “...but perfect love casts out fear...” once we are surrendered to God (1 John 4:18). We should quit asking ourselves, “Am I of any use?” and accept the truth that we really are not of much use to Him. The issue is never of being of use, but of being of value to God Himself. Once we are totally surrendered to God, He will work through us all the time." - My Utmost For His Highest

I hadn't thought about defining how we love GOD.  It's important to get this concept down first before trying to be involved in a loving relationship with a significant other.  For if you can't find "true" love with God, how can you give it to another?  The world offers a different portrayal of what love is.  We are to get our definition from the Bible.  

1 Corinthians 13:4-7 says, "Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres."

In our relationships, we must keep ourselves in check by reviewing this verse to make sure we are "LOVING" as God intended.  I may not be in a marriage, but my daughter sure knows how much I love her!!!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

The Father's Role in a Little Girl's Life

"The father is usually the first man in a little girl's life. Girls usually develop their idea of 'maleness' from their fathers, and this influences the way they will view other men in their lives. Fathers, thus, lay the groundwork for the type of relationship that their daughters will share with men later in their life.

Young girls usually depend on their mothers to help them form their definition of 'womanhood'. However, a loving father is important to help a young girl develop self-esteem. The affection of the father for his daughter defines how she will evaluate herself as a woman."

This is why I make it a priority, in spite of myself, to encourage Hannah's relationship with her dad.  It would be easier for me to just let the relationship deteriorate.  But I know how important a young girl's relationship with her father is for her future relationships with men.  Hannah is very hard on her dad.  She never wants to be with him.  She dreads when she has to spend a night with him, or any time at all.  She claims to want to be with me all the time.  She reports that he yells at her all the time.  As it is, she spends very little time with him.  He does get his 3 nights per week, but when those nights fall on week nights, he doesn't pick her up till like 7pm.  So, she's only with him to sleep, basically.  Then he only has her a full day (Sat) every other week.  I have her every Sunday to take her to church.  Lately, he's been giving up his weekend nights with her, due to his new relationship.  We all have priorities...  

When Hannah says bad things about her dad, I try to remind her of something good.  I tell her how much he loves her and misses her.  At least, I want her to believe that he cherishes her.  I guess it doesn't really matter what the truth is.  It's all a matter of her perception that will develop her view of men.  I often wonder if it would be helpful for me to have a good Christian man in my life to act as a role model for Hannah.  I expect that God will provide that when the time is right.  For now, I just do my best to play both roles and hope for the best.  Fortunately, Hannah has VERY high self-esteem!!!    

Monday, February 18, 2013

A Sign of Growth....the Talk

My, has my attitude changed in 3 years!  Once again, my daughter came home from her dad's house talking about a lady friend that's been hanging out with them.  She tells me they hold hands….so, I knew.  Here we go again!  Of course, in the moment I was enraged.  I thought he learned last time that he was to warn me BEFORE bringing his girlfriends around Hannah, so that she could be spared my reaction.  
I could have called him yelling and screaming, which may have been closer to my reaction last time.  But instead, I gave it a few days before deciding to send him a text saying, “We need to talk about your new girlfriend.  I shouldn’t hear it from her.”  He responded agreeing that he had meant to tell me about her, and we would talk.  
Anyway, eventually, the dreaded phone call came.  I prayed in the moment to respond in wisdom, not taking it personally.  I only wanted to ask the questions that pertained to Hannah, only what mattered.  His business is his business, after all.  The one calming factor I had is that Hannah had told me that the girlfriend is very nice.  I could give him a hard time, but legally I have no grounds.  If Hannah likes the woman, is this really worth a battle?  She has no child to muddy the water like the last one.  Really, last time, it wasn’t the girlfriend that was so much a problem, as her daughter.  So, maybe as long as I only hear good things, I should leave it alone.  
The other concern was, should I insist on meeting this woman?  Last time I insisted!  She and I met alone at Starbucks talking for 2 hrs.  It was a nightmare for me, just because all was so fresh and she was the “other woman”.  Did the meeting really make any difference?  I don’t think so.  It only put a face to the name.  Turmoil happened regardless between Hannah and her kid.  So what difference did meeting her really make?  
Shall I wait until I hear a complaint from Hannah before insisting we meet?  These are just some of the many questions racing through my head.  The change I see in me, is that I am much calmer this time around.  Last time was also made worse by an ENGAGEMNT.  The thought of this woman and her daughter one day living with Hannah when she’s with her dad made things more intense.  Thankfully, the engagement was broken.  And it seems that because of this new girlfriend, the old has been put aside, which is a really GOOD thing!  So, maybe this is actually a positive thing, as long as Hannah is happy with her.  
Hannah tells me that she has brought her gifts at times, even giving her a plush cat and card for Valentine’s Day.  So, she’s obviously trying to win her affections.  I feel confident that I have no need to compete with any “other woman”, as mine and Hannah’s bond is so strong.  I don’t feel competition.  I don’t feel intimidated.  I am in a better place now.  I am stronger.  I have done a lot of healing.  I’m thankful for the changes I see after 3 years of allowing God to be in control of all things!  My faith gives me peace.


1. Sex is NOT love. Love is not sex. 
2. You can have sex and not be in love. You can be in love and not engage in sex. 
3. A man may hate u and still have sex with u. Be wise. 
4. Using sex to manipulate a man will eventually fail. 
5. It is self deception to think that giving him sex will make him love u. 
6. True Love will never force u to engage in sex. 
7. A man who doesn't love u will not change his mind because of sex. 
8. If he tells u to ‘prove your love’ by having sex with him. He is only using u. 
9. If he is in it for the sex, ‘better sex’ will take him away from u. 
10. Making yourself his ‘sex slave’ is foolish. Love will never shame or degrade u. If u have made the mistake of trying to use sex to buy this man, now is the time to re-assess your relationship and build it on the right foundation. If he gets married to u because ‘the sex is good’, it will be fatal to your marriage. Let him get married to u because he loves u, honors u, feels a strong emotional, mental and spiritual connection with u and wants u to spend the rest of his life with u...... 

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Four Common Misconceptions About Forgiveness - By Karla Downing

We are commanded to forgive those that injure us, if we want to be forgiven by God (Matthew 6:14-15). Here are four common misconceptions about forgiveness that make it more difficult to do

It will let the person who wronged you off the hook if you forgive.Forgiveness is about letting go of the right to take revenge into your own hands. When you forgive someone, you turn him/her over to God who judges men righteously and justly. It may not happen in the timing that you would prefer, but it will happen.

The person who wronged you has to apologize first. You are commanded to forgive whether the other person admits the wrong or not and whether the other person apologizes or not. Jesus forgave the people who crucified him while hanging on the cross and they were in the process of cheering his death.

It means you will need to trust the person. Forgiveness is about not getting even; it isn't about giving the person a chance to hurt you again. You shouldn't trust an untrustworthy person. Trust needs to be regained over time. If you trust foolishly, you are almost guaranteeing you will have something else to forgive. Trust is given to people who prove they can do what they promise, who have your best interest in mind, and who have integrity.

It means you need to reconcile with the offender. There are times it is healthy and right to cut off a relationship with someone who repeatedly abuses you, takes advantage of you, hurts you, and makes a relationship so toxic that you have to sever it. This cut off can be for a short time or longer depending on the situation. It should only be used in extreme situations in family relationships, because choosing to not have a relationship with a loved one means that you also face a loss of that relationship and have to work through all the emotions that go along with severing it.

When you correct these four misconceptions about forgiveness, you can work on forgiveness while setting healthy boundaries in your relationships.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Knowing When Enough is Enough

If a man wants you, nothing can keep him away.
If he doesn’t want you, nothing can make him stay.
Stop making excuses for a man and his behavior.
Allow your intuition (or spirit) to save you from heartache.
Stop trying to change yourselves for a relationship that’s not meant to be.
Slower is better.

Never live your life for a man before you find what makes you truly happy.
If a relationship ends because the man was not treating you as you deserve then heck no, you can’t "be friends."
A friend wouldn’t mistreat a friend.
Don’t settle. If you feel like he is stringing you along, then he probably is.
Don’t stay because you think "it will get better." You’ll be mad at yourself a year later for staying when things are not better.
The only person you can control in a relationship is you.

Avoid men who’ve got a bunch of children by a bunch of different women.
He didn’t marry them when he got them pregnant, 
Why would he treat you any differently?
Always have your own set of friends separate from his.
Maintain boundaries in how a guy treats you.
If something bothers you, speak up.
Never let a man know everything. He will use it against you later.

You cannot change a man’s behavior. Change comes from within.
Don’t EVER make him feel he is more important than you are...even if he has more education or in a better job. Do not make him into a quasi-god.
He is a man, nothing more nothing less.
Never let a man define who you are.
Never borrow someone else’s man.
Oh Lord! If he cheated with you, he’ll cheat on you.
A man will only treat you the way you allow him to treat you.

Author:  Unknown

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Hannah Meets the 2nd Girlfriend

Hannah came home yesterday telling me about this female “friend” of her dad’s that hung out with them all day yesterday.  Come to find out, this is his new girlfriend that he didn’t bother telling me about!  I don’t care if he has a girlfriend, but I don’t appreciate him having her around Hannah during his short time with her.  Last night, he even asked me to keep her on his night, seemingly, so he could go out on a DATE!!!  I always plan my life around my time with Hannah!  My philosophy on that is if he asks me to spend extra time with my daughter giving up his own time, I’m going to take it if at all possible.  If he doesn’t want her around, I probably wouldn’t want her around him either.  
Hannah’s dad had a fiancĂ© up until last summer, I guess.  He even had her and her daughter come over and spend the night when Hannah was there.  That pushed me over the edge!!!  It was bad enough that Hannah was forced to spend time with these people she didn’t even like, but then to have immorality modeled for her?  So, of course, I’m feeling pretty flustered about this news.  He only thinks about what’s best for himself, not Hannah.  
Anyway, when asked if she liked this woman, Hannah said yes.  From what I hear from Hannah, she’s tall, brown hair and loves roller coasters.  They’ve been to her town home.  She has no pets or children.  I asked if she’s a Christian.  Hannah said, “She seems like a Christian, because she’s really nice.”  Although really nice is a great thing, that doesn’t make a person a Christian.  So, we shall see.  
So, I’m left wandering if I should say something to her dad about having her around his girlfriends, or just pick my battles and leave it be until I see a problem?  Oh, and Hannah said that they hold hands when together.  That’s how I know this is a girlfriend.  Legally, I know I have no grounds to keep Hannah away from his women.  But the fact is, I do NOT trust his judgment on what is OK to subject Hannah to.  
And we had such peace lately between us.  I guess it was time for an issue to arise.  I guess I should be glad it’s not a new girl every weekend.  

The Bible’s Cohesive Portrait of Sexuality

  1. Our physical bodies are good.  God made us as physical beings.  We do not just have bodies, we are bodies, though we are more than just bodies.  
  2. God made us sexual beings, male and female, and our sexuality is good.  Genesis 1-2 depicts God creating two types of human beings, male and female, both made in the image of God and both declared to be very good.  
  3. We are made for relationship; in Genesis 2:15-24 we learn that even the perfect man is insufficient by himself, even in the perfect environment and in perfect relationship with God himself.  God declares that it is not good that the man be alone; human beings are made for relationship with a complementary version of human being, a man for a woman and a woman for a man.  
  4. Humans are created capable of “becoming one flesh: through the joining of their bodies, and the resulting capacity for reproduction in marriage is blessed by God and a blessings from God.
  5. Humanity rebelled against God, and in the process broke God’s beautiful gift of sexuality, along with all of his other gifts to us.  As a result, we are rebellious, broken, twisted.
  6. God is at work redeeming our sexuality in two crucial ways:  God has revealed his standards or rules for how we are to conduct our sexual lives (and his laws are for our own good; Deut 10:12-13).  God has also offered us a living relationship with him through the death and resurrection of his Son, Jesus Christ, so that we are actually capable of living our lives in a way that gives him pleasure and moves us toward the blessedness he intended for us. 
  7. The scriptures reveal to us that sexual intercourse has a meaning fixed and determined by God:  it creates a one flesh union between a man and a woman, a union that is to knit them together in a way that’s supposed to remain permanent through life (and thus this teaching is the foundation for Jesus’ condemnation of divorce in Matthew 19 and Paul’s condemnation of sexual immorality in 1 Corinthians 6).  
I highlighted the parts that really stuck me, personally.  First, human beings are made for RELATIONSHIP!  We are not meant to be alone.  Because of this, I believe that God has picked my future husband and is currently molding him for the day we meet. God's timing is perfect, and I have learned not to rush God.  "He's Got This!"  

Second is that I do feel BROKEN sexually after having been deceived so deeply.  I often wonder how I will ever trust enough to give myself fully to anyone again.  But in the next part, it mentions that God is at work to redeem our sexuality.  This does offer hope that next time will be different, and maybe I will one day heal completely.  This is not easy for me to believe, but that’s what faith is all about.  I am still learning.  What seems impossible to us, comes easily to God.  I must confess, I’m still working on that one.

As a single woman, I will follow the scriptures and keep myself pure for my husband.  I believe what the Bible says about two becoming one flesh to be bound PERMANENTLY.  I get that!  I’ve been told that no man will wait for me.  Well, so be it!  Then I will never marry again.  If I’m not worth waiting for, then he’s not worth marrying.  To me, this is a small sacrifice for your bride.  Besides, I’d love to find a man who shares the same ideals, who also desires to wait.  I want to find a man who is a strong believer, a man of faith, a man already mature in Godly things.  This is another situation I am weak in faith.  It is very difficult to imagine finding a man like that, although I’ve been told they are out there. 

Some tell me I am too picky.  They tell me my standards are too high, that I’m looking for Jesus himself!  Well, so what!  I want to see Jesus in my husband.  What’s wrong with that?  I realize that compromises must be made, and there is no such thing as perfection.  But there are certain standards that I simply think are important, and I should have to waver.  My standards are based on Scripture, too, mostly.  

I am looking for a spiritual leader.  I want someone more mature in Christ than I am.  I’ve been criticized for this, since I have gotten my Master’s degree in Christian counseling, which automatically makes me a little more Bible-wise than the average person, maybe.  Is my standard set to high?  I’ve also been told that it’s ok to entertain the thought of dating a non-Christian in hopes of converting him.  Well, I’ve already been in a marriage where I tried to change my husband.  That obviously didn’t go well.  I want someone strong enough in their faith to have proper morals instilled in him.  

I could go on, but I think I’ll save it for another blog….

Saturday, February 2, 2013

What I've Learned Through My Pain

2 Corinthians 1:3-4 (NASB) "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God."
"...our intimacy with the Lord reaches some of its highest peaks when we are at points of greatest personal need. That is exactly why we have to train ourselves to a new view of pain if we are to keep climbing. We must discipline our minds to the notion that all pain can be a school in which one can learn." ~Gail MacDonald
This is something I have meditated on over the past 3 years.  I have experienced great pains of the heart, which God has so graciously consoled.  Sure, in the midst, I did some yelling at God...."Why me?!?!?!” I would exclaim.  God never left my side, even when I felt the most alone.  I always felt His presence.  I never turned away from God.  In fact, I did the opposite.  I made my life revolved around God, alone.  
God was shaping me into a strong woman, who is willing to share her testimony to help others.  God can and already has sent me to intervene in the lives of suffering women to offer hope.  
When my life first fell apart, I couldn’t see past today.  All I could see was my pain.  But 3 years later, I see a courageous woman who is about to finish her Master’s in Mental Health Counseling.  I have learned through my own healing and my education how to be a great Christian counselor.  Imagine the difference I will be able to make as a counselor!  
Spiritually, I have learned to depend fully on God.  I have learned not to focus too passionately about my own desires, but make my desires His desires.  For example, I desperately want more children.  But I realize that may not be God’s plan for me.  I accept that God knows better than I do what I need.  So, instead of worrying about my fertility, I trust that God has a plan to prosper and not to harm me.  I could consume myself with dating and trying to find a husband, but I’m not.  I’m living season by season.  Right now, and for the past 3 years, my focus is on finishing my Masters…after Hannah, of course.  Now that my educational season is coming to a close, I do wonder if dating may fit into God’s plan.  But I’m not worrying about.  I believe God has already chosen a future spouse for me, and we will meet when the timing is right.  If I was to go out and rush things, I may marry the wrong guy.  
My prayers have changed, too.  I used to ask for what I wanted.  Now, I still ask, but ask for God’s will above my own.  I ask seeking His best!  When I need to make a decision, I ask for guidance, wisdom and discernment.  I ask God to make His path for me clear.  I have learned that peace is in the direction God chooses.  So, I wait for the peace.  
I’m so thankful everyday for God’s love!!!  I’m thankful that I will never be alone, for He is always with me.  I’m thankful for God’s grace and mercy in my life.  I’m thankful for the many blessings He has given me.  My God takes really good care of me!  I need nothing more...

Friday, February 1, 2013

An Awkward Moment, and Yet a Sign of Healing

Tonight is the 1st annual “A Date with Your Princess” at Hannah’s school.  I worked to get Hannah all dolled up for her very first date….with her father.  He came to the door with flowers.  But he needed to come in and change clothes, since he came directly from work.  This was the first time he was in my house in over 3 years!!!  I watched him struggling to button some stubborn buttons and actually offered to help, even with the one at his neck….AWKWARD!!!!  Thankfully, I didn’t have to help with his tie!  I was even able to take photos of the two of them, knowing that Hannah would want to remember this moment.  
Now that they’ve gone, I’m left feeling flustered from this uncomfortable experience.  But at the same time, I am super proud of myself for making it through and even participating for the sake of my daughter.  I do realize that a girl’s first love should be her father.  That has not been going well, so I wanted to make this event really special for her!  As difficult as it is for me, I want her to learn to respect and adore her father…for her own sake.  
As I look back, I can see how far I’ve come!  I am not angry anymore.  I still don’t care to spend any amount of time with the ex or talk with him, but at least we are able to co-parent as a team for the most part.  Most of the time, we are civil with each other.  Yes, I do avoid him at all costs.  Usually, I only have to see him when he drops off Hannah on Sunday morning every other week.  This week, I had to see him 3 times!!!  I prefer not to, but if I must, I am strong enough to handle it.  I still don’t really look him in the eye much.  But I don’t feel the intense evil protruding from him as I did before when he continued to try to hurt me. 
 I guess the fact is we’ve both done some changing.  I believe in giving credit where credit is due.  I have seen the ex’s effort to remain calm and even apologize after losing his temper during an argument.  He does see Hannah every week, not a lot, but he does.  He does take her fun places sometimes.  He makes a conscious effort to avoid arguments with me.  Many didn’t expect him to stick around this long, but he has.  
So, I am thankful for the growth and healing over the last 3 years.  I know this would not have been possible without GOD!!!  I have prayed for this night as I do for many others.  God is good, and he will be at the date with them.  I pray that Hannah’s dad will treat her like a princess and teach her what to expect from a man.  I pray that this will be an evening of bonding between them.  May she fall in love with her father tonight…