October wrap up

Words we focused on this month were

blameless

righteous

free

These are all good concepts to think about, to put into practice week by week. God wants all of us, any way he can get us and putting pressure on ourselves is only hurting us. God is not condemning you, he wants you to be free and seek to have relationship with him.

We talked about do we need to say anything and is the Proverbs 31 woman still relevant?

We also were reminded that comparison is the thief of joy and how to start putting feet on your prayers.

I won a Blogger award!

As we enter the last two months of the year remember, you still have time to do whatever it is you want to do. You just have to get out of your own way.

I am so glad today is October 31. That means Thanksgiving is on its way and we can move right into Christmas. Happy Halloween!

Do you need to say anything?

Sensible people control their temper; they earn respect by overlooking wrongs.
Proverbs 19:11 NLT
I know this is something I need to work on. I never thought I was a sensitive person and I still don’t think so. My hormones are definitely all over the place considering I just had a baby, a little over 30 days ago. I think people forget that. I probably am more sensitive and I already think too much so the last few weeks have been challenging. I was pretty upset with family members for certain comments they have made or jokes. I didn’t know what to do or how to handle it and then this scripture popped in my reading. I felt like I was hit with a ton of bricks.

fight punch GIF by Harlem Globetrotters
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God doesn’t believe in confrontation all the time. Everything you are thinking doesn’t need to be said. There is something to be said about letting things go. I have never seen this verse in the bible before but I understand the sentiment. It takes a big person to let things go. It’s like turning the other cheek in an argument which is much harder for me because I used to like to argue.

This scripture is also good to keep in mind when we are thinking about being a good partner. My husband often reminds me that I don’t need to say what I’m thinking. I’m getting better. Now if I could only control my face. One thing at time Lord, one thing at a time.

Straight Face GIF by memecandy
a common facial expression I make. Giphy.com
Say What Excuse Me GIF by Election 2020
another one of my faves. Giphy.com

Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others.
Colossians 3:13 NLT

Update: I wrote the above words about a year and a half ago. I still agree with this sentiment. Probably even more so now then I did a year ago. I have been working on controlling my tongue, not only monitoring what I say but also how I say it. I know this is something that I am going to need constantly work on. My mouth often moves a lot faster than my brain. I am better than I was in high school or college but I know I can do better.

I think now more than ever we need to be careful of what we are saying and how we are saying it. Everyone seems to be ultra aware and ready to pick a fight over anything. I am not saying to not stand up for injustice. I am also not saying to question peoples intentions. I am saying to pick and choose your battles. Especially with your loved ones. Our patience always seems the shortest with the people who know us the best.

The next time your MIL questions the cleanliness of your house or your grandpa says you look fat, or your husband asks you a question he Knows the answer to, think before you respond.

How relevant is the Proverbs 31 woman today?

I told yall I had beef with this Proverb. It just seemed so unattainable.

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However, after reading it again it doesn’t focus on the work of a woman as much as I thought, it more so focuses on her character.

I guess we get caught up in her actions more because most of us want some kind of action plan. Tangible steps that we can do in our day to day lives to live better. Its much easier to change when you give me a checklist of things to do. However, God doesn’t really work that way. He want’s us our hearts to be right. Once our hearts in the right place, our actions will follow.

How can I apply this today?

Reminder: This isn’t a checklist of things to do but more so a guide to let you know how to live.

We shouldn’t take this literally. Most of us don’t live in places where we can go inspect fields and plant vineyards. I am not sewing any clothes nor do I have a ton of servants I can give housework. I believe this is a stance on not being lazy and trying to make good use of your time. This is a good reminder not to use your free to time to binge Netflix and surf Instagram.

Most bible scholars would say that this is a compilation of many women not just one. This proverb was written by a king named Lemul. He was just writing what he saw his mom, and probably her friends doing. When I start looking at it that way, it changed my perspective. Its bogus to expect one woman to do ALL of the things in this Proverb.

Who can find a virtuous and capable wife? She is more precious than rubies. Her husband can trust her, and she will greatly enrich his life. She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life. Proverbs 31:10‭-‬12

To me these are some of the most important lines in this proverb. I think any woman can get behind this. I certainly want to enrich my husbands life.

It also was not written to women, it was written to men to know what to look for when they go find a wife. People get mad all the time (and I agree with them) that you hear a lot in church about people preaching to women about how to be a good wife but not to men about how to be a good husband. I think knowing that this Proverb was really written to men makes sense. The bible tells us that a man that finds a wife finds a good thing.

What would I want my son to say about me? I want my son and my husband to be proud of me. I want to provide a good example so my son knows what kind of woman to look for. I want him to know what values are important. I want my son to know that beauty on the inside is more important than beauty on the outside. I want to greatly enrich the life of my husband.

The Proverbs 31 woman is very relevant, if we use her (them) as a guide I believe we can get something good out it. If we use it as a checklist, its only going to make us angry and frustrated.

Being a good partner

I was with my girls last weekend and of course we start talking about our men. Why don’t they listen, why are they so slow, why don’t they do things the way we do? These are great questions. If you think I have the answers here, think again!

Happy African American GIF by BET
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I’m no marriage expert but I have been married almost 10 years. Its wild. When we first got married I couldn’t imagine what 10 years married even looked like. My pastor talks all the time about what makes a good partner and it may surprise you. It certainly surprised me.

He says you shouldn’t tell the other person what to do, you should pray for them.

Lionel Ritchie What GIF

That doesn’t seem super helpful. Prayer feels passive. I want action.

Hey You Movie GIF by Bad Boys For Life
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I want to ask him to take out the trash and he just gets up and does it, no questions asked, no comments, immediately, not at the commercial, not after this play, NOW. That’s not a partner though that’s a child. I didn’t get married to have another child.

My husband has expressed to me on more than one occasion that he doesn’t always like the way I talk to him. He also told me he doesn’t say anything about it, he has just gotten used to it. I didn’t like that at all. I need to work on my tone, not him get used to it. I came across this verse in Proverbs that spoke exactly to what he was saying to me.

When she speaks, her words are wise, and she gives instructions with kindness. Proverbs 31:26 NLT

Gives instructions with kindness. Do I do that? Not every time. Do you do that? I was listening to my girlfriends talk to their partners over the weekend and I didn’t hear a lot of kindness. According to Dictionary.com kindness means being generous, compassionate and friendly. I don’t yell or nag at my husband but can I be short, snappy, or rude? Yes I can.

I don’t much feel like giving instructions with kindness when I’ve had to give them more than once. I don’t feel like giving instructions with kindness when I feel like you shouldn’t need instructions in the first place. The bible doesn’t say that though. We are to give instructions with kindness every time.

If you read Proverbs you will notice there are wayyyy more things about wives than husband’s. I’m going to get more into that next week. I used to have some pretty negative thoughts about the Proverbs 31 woman. Not so much anymore, but we’ll talk about it.

The key thing about being a good partner is remembering you can’t change anyone but yourself. That’s why my pastor tells us to pray instead of nag. You will change how you react to whatever your partner is doing, which is the bigger issue anyway. Right? Right.


Prayer

Lord help me give instructions with kindness. Help me have grace and patience instead of anger and resentment when my husband doesn’t do what I ask him to do in way or speed that I would do it. Help me be thankful that I have a partner that is willing to help me and be an active parent. Remind me of the love that I have for him and how awesome he is. In Jesus name, I pray amen.

Here is a sermon my pastor preached on about the secrets of lasting love.