Wednesday, April 20, 2011

WOW Post - Stuck In A Rut?

This comes from a friend of a friend, Missionary Lisa Ritche:

Are there days where you simply feel like a robot working, cooking, cleaning, grocery shopping, keeping your husband and kids happy. Your husband comes home, you talk, eat and go to bed. The same thing every day, or so it seems. You just ......are not content with the way things are in your marriage. Then, one day, you have a breakdown. It's the same breakdown that happens every few months where you ask yourself, "What am I doing here? This is not the man I thought I married. What happened to those dreams I had about our life together? Why doesn’t my husband ever listen to me? He is never home and I never get to go anywhere. I can’t take these kids anymore." You question, you doubt, and your flesh gets the best of you. Really ladies, aren’t you being just a little selfish.

Let me give you a reminder of how awesome a calling it is to be a wife. God created us to be help-meets, but what really does that mean? Does that mean we simply do his laundry and provide intimacy when he needs it? I don't think so. I think many times, as wives, we do not really take the time to truly understand the role we play in the lives of our husbands. God did not put the man at the head because He thought less of the woman. He did so because He needed to create an atmosphere of order in the home. So, He chose the man to lead and the woman to submit and follow. However, with the role we have as wives, there is an incredible responsibility that in most cases is missed. It is often missed because as wome, we can not get past the word "submit," and the annoyance that word brings! Look at this Scripture though.
Proverbs 12:4 - A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband: but she that maketh ashamed is as rottenness in his bones.

Hmmm... First, let us look deeper into some of the key words in this verse.

Virtuous - means; a force, an army, strength, able, substance, worthy, honorable.
Crown - means; encircle, crown, compass, to put the finishing touch to
Ashamed - means; to make disappointed, put to shame, confound, become dry, to contradict or refute, to bring ruin.

We are a force and a HUGE influence in our husband's life. And, when we do not step into our roles as wives properly, we are a hindrance to our husbands, we are a bad influence in their lives. When we argue, fight, refuse to submit, boss, verbally bash privately or publicly, disrespect, and treat our husband in any way that is out of alignment with God's Word, we are hurting them. We are ROTTING THEIR BONES! God made sure through His word that we all know everything we need to live happy, peaceful, and joy-filled lives. His Word does not adapt itself with the times. His Word does not change to fit our needs or the culture. It just IS. We all have choices...we can obey and be blessed or we can disobey and bring ruin to ourselves, our children and our husbands.

What are some of the benefits of obedience to God’s word:
- blessings
- allows God to WORK in our husband's life and heart
- helps our husband BE what God created him to be
- trains our children to be God obeyers NOT the cultures lackey

What does the fruit of Disobedience Bring?
- a ruined husband with rotten bones
- hindrance of our husbands spiritual walk
- trains our children to life selfish worldly lives

To put it bluntly, we need to stop waiting for our husband's to fulfill OUR dreams and needs and simply OBEY what God wants US to do as wives. We need to DO what God says to do BECAUSE God SAID it and HE knows best! When we let go of what we want and do what God wants, then and ONLY then will we truly have all that God wants us to have. Then and ONLY then will God actually have the room and ability to WORK in our husbands hearts. Then and ONLY then will you be content in your marriage.

During my quiet time a few days ago, I sat down and listed personal ways I could serve and be a better wife to my husband. I want to share with you ladies some of the things on my list and to encourage you to do the same.

-Pray for him daily.
-Random touches and kisses
-Letting him relax when he gets home from work. (don’t toss him the kids and run out the door.)
-Giving him time alone to relax or spend with the Lord. (very important).

-Leave love notes and scriptures of encouragement.
-Pack his lunch/breakfast and leave XXOO’s on his napkin.
-Keeping intimacy on the forefront of your mind rather than on the back burner.
-In conversation, maintain eye contact and provide physical touch (like holding his hand) to let him know you're with him.
-Show interest in his ideas, ambitions and dreams and be an advocate for them.
-Even if you don’t agree, the final decision is his to make. Be sincere about how you feel, but stray away from negativity.
-Instead of dwelling on his short comings (we all have them) focus on everything you absolutely love about him.
-Compliment him on how he looks. (men are aware of their appearance too!)
-Always speak positively about him to others. (especially in front of the kids)

If you're feeling a little stuck in the wife/homemaker routine, I encourage you to make a list like this that is specific to your husband. Think of his specific desires, needs, dreams, and passions. What really means a lot to him? What topics have come up in conversation recently that he wishes he could do/have more of? For example, has he been saying, "I really want to spend more time with God, but I'm having trouble finding time." So as his help-meet, you have to try to help him make that happen. Also, think of things you use to do while you were dating/engaged that really blessed him. For example, did you use to leave notes of love and encouragement all the time and he loved it. Once you make a list like this and tangibly see some of the ways you can make a difference in your husband's life, tackle it with passion. It is an honor and an immense calling to run, work and love beside our husbands. And, oh how desperately the world around us needs to see the light of Jesus shining bright through the window of a godly marriage. Let us be challenged!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Chicken & Bowtie Dinner

This is a comfort food type meal in the crock pot -- what could be better?  It won't knock your socks off, but it's something a little different to help you change things up a little.  My MIL made it first, and then we changed it up a little because it was way too salty.

Chicken & Bowtie Dinner

1/2 c butter, sliced
4 to 5 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 - .6 oz pkgs zesty Italian salad dressing mix (I used one)
2 Tbs minced onion (I just sprinkled some on -- 1 tsp maybe)
8 oz pkg cream cheese, cubed
2 - 10 3/4 oz cans cream of chicken soup
12 oz pkg bowtie pasta, cooked
Optional: 10 oz pkg frozen baby peas, thawed

Place butter in the bottom of a slow cooker.  Layer chicken breasts over butter; sprinkle with dressing mix and onion.  Cover and cook on low setting for 4 to 5 hours.  Remove chicken from slow cooker; dice into bite-size pieces and set aside.  Add cream cheese and soup to slow cooker; stir together.  Stir in chicken; cover and cook on high setting for 15 minutes, until sauce is warmed through.  Add cooked pasta and peas, if desired, to slow cooker and toss to mix well.  Cover and let stand for several minutes until warmed through.  Can serve with shredded or grated parmesan cheese on top.  Serves 6 to 8.

Recipe from Gooseberry Patch "Slow Cookers, Casseroles & Skillets" cookbook.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

New Twist on Grilled Cheese

Back many ages ago in Jr. High Home Ec class, we made this recipe.  It came to mind this week.  Unfortunately, my kids aren't big fans, but most kids are.  As an adult, I enjoy them once in a while -- Pizza Grilled Cheese!  The photo isn't great, but it illustrates how to make them.  I intended to put a photo of the final product on here also, but alas, I burnt the sandwich while getting lunch for my family.  I wanted to make another sandwich, but that would have required me to thaw bread from the freezer and to eat two sandwhiches!

Pizza Grilled Cheese

Sliced Bread
Oregano or Pizza Seasoning

Butter one side each of two slices of bread.  Lay one slice of bread butter side down on griddle.  Add American cheese slices (or cheese of your choice), a squirt of ketchup and a sprinkle of oregano or pizza seasoning before adding other slice of bread butter side up.  Grill on one side, then turn over and grill on the other side.

NOTE:  The amount of ketchup pictured may be a bit much.  The ketchup dripped out a little.