Ultimate Marriage Reading Challenge of 2015 – May


When I saw the book of the month for May was To Love, Honor and Vacuum, I honestly didn’t think it applied to me.  I mean, I work outside the home and I have a husband who cooks and washes the dishes every night and always helps out when and where he can.  Yes, I have been so blessed.  But, I made a commitment this year to read at least one book a month that will benefit me and my marriage and so I took up the challenge to read the book.

And it is amazing.

Not only does it give insightful advice on how to manage your home – whether you’re a working mom and a stay-at-home mom, but it challenges you.  I love the fact that Sheila never once made me feel guilty for working outside the home.  And I think many (if not all) working moms feel guilty.  Yesterday, Baby Girl had a fall at school and hubby had to rush to the school to fetch her and take her to the doctor.  I felt sick to my stomach that I couldn’t be there for her, but I was very grateful that my hubby could be.  But the guilt – oh, the guilt!  She is fine and the doctor checked her over carefully to make sure there is no concussion or anything like that.

Sheila’s book never once made me feel guilty – instead, Sheila seems to have this approach of you are where you are in life (wherever or whatever that may be) now let’s see how to make the best of your current circumstances – without any guilt.

And the big challenge I got from Sheila’s book – am I honoring God?  Am I showing my family God and Jesus?  Not just in what I do for them – but more importantly in WHO I am?

That is a very powerful challenge.

One that I am sure I don’t live up to – not nearly as often as I think I would like to.

Our sole motivation in this life is to live out that relationship with Jesus – so other people can see someone who is vibrant and strong and courageous and filled with love.  Not because of any other reason but the fact that we have an intimate and strong and faith filled relationship with Jesus.  And not because of what we have done – but because of what He has done in our lives.

This story of mine is such a small story, and it is only at the beginning stages, but it is exciting to me – and I pray for God’s grace and strength to keep it up, because it is only be His change in my heart and mind that I can even consider this in the first place:  I have never been one to exercise.  I loathed it, hated it and even though I was naturally slender before falling pregnant, I did not exercise.  I “played” around at going to gym, but never stuck to any exercise regimen at all.  Basically, I just did it because I thought it was something I had to do.  One of my prayers over the last will is based on Philippians 2:13 (NIV):

for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.

You see – we can ask God to “will” us (i.e. to put desire in us) and to “to act” (i.e. to give us an opportunity) to fulfill his good purposes.  And healthy is definitely part of His good purpose.  But so is having a faith-based real relationship with him, and so is having a marriage that makes us holy and shows Jesus to our family.

Anyway, I am now running about three or four times a week, weather permitting.  But that in itself is not the miracle – the miracle is that I am enjoying it.  Very much.  God has changed my heart and my mind and is continuing to do so.  I want to be fit and healthy, and I pray that God will continue this good work – because anyone who knows me knows that this is a miracle.

And it is that type of miracle we need to show our families – not in what we say (most of us talk too much anyway), but in WHO we are.  The “who” will determine our motivation for serving and loving our family and that is where all the difference lies.  And without saying a word, our families will sense the difference between a wife humbly serving her family, or resentfully serving our families.

Thank you Sheila for another excellent book!

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