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Imagine for a moment that you are married to your best friend. You share the same dreams and the same goals. You work together as a team, a seamless partnership, hand in glove. You communicate easily with each other. And you can talk about anything. In fact you talk about everything without fear or apprehension. The tone of your conversation is gracious and truthful. Your mate treats you like you’re special. They drop what they are doing when you need help and they assist you gladly. They would always rather spend time with you than anyone else. They think about you often. They call or email during the day just to let you know they are thinking about you. You look forward to going home and being together at the end of the work day. They call to let you know what time to expect them.

Holding Hands

When you walk through the front door they greet you with a smile that says they are glad to be together again. They drop unimportant things, or quickly complete important things, so they can devote their full attention to you. They’re genuinely interested in the events of your day.  They listen to you and encourage you. They have been praying for you since you parted early in the morning. They prepare a meal, or compliment the dinner you’ve been preparing. Or they invite you to eat out and ask your choice of restaurant. If you have children they inquire about progress or update you on the challenges and victories in the children’s lives. You work together to complete dishes and homework and any other tasks, so you can both enjoy the rest of the evening. They engage in meaningful conversation and avoid the distraction of too much TV. They make it a priority that you both go to bed at the same time so you can have a few moments of pillow talk and prayer. When you reach out to hold them they are attentive and move closer to you. They welcome intimacy and together you enjoy the experience of oneness. You fall asleep in each other’s arms.

Right about now I hope you’re saying to your spouse, “Look Honey, he’s talking about us!” I hope I have given a candid description of your marriage. And as you read these lines, you feel the affirmation of a life well lived and a job well done. I hope you derive a high level of satisfaction from the quality of character that your relationship reflects. And you recognize the work of God in your life and in your marriage. And it challenges you, more and more, to be an excellent marriage partner.

The Marriage Feast is dedicated to encouraging and strengthening marriages. We hope you benefit from these pages.

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Everyday Wisdom

 

John Wayne famously said “Life is hard. It’s harder if you’re stupid.” I have certainly done my share of stupid things, and I suspect you have too. life-is-hard-its-harder-if-youre-stupid-john-wayne-5066631In our defense, none of us is born smart, but the truth is, we are all responsible to learn the things we need to know to succeed in life. The passing of years is all it takes for us to grow up physically. But we need to proactively apply ourselves in order to mature emotionally, relationally and spiritually. Charley “Tremendous” Jones said, “You will be the same person in five years as you are today, except for the people you meet and the books you read.” Books 2So, let me introduce you to someone you really need to meet, and the book he wrote; The person is King Solomon; the book is Proverbs.  The smartest man in the world gave this advice: Get some wisdom. Prov 4:5. King SolomonHe wasn’t just trying to sell his book. He was trying to teach his children to learn from his mistakes, instead of experiencing the heartache of learning painful lessons, firsthand.

 

Proverbs is chock full of nuggets of timeless wisdom on four major issues of life: Marriage, Work & Money, Raising children, and Choosing our words. Here are few samples.

Marriage

He tells us to treasure our spouse and be faithful to them. Not to get drawn away by the lies or the counterfeits of the enemy.

  • Prov 18:22           He who finds a wife finds a good thing, and obtains favor from the Lord.
  • Prov  5:18-19      Let your fountain be blessed, and rejoice with the wife of your   youth.  As a loving deer and a graceful doe, let her breasts satisfy you at all               times; and always be enraptured with her love.
  • Prov 31:10-31     Who can find a virtuous wife? For her worth is far above rubies. The heart of her husband safely trusts her; so he will have no lack of gain…

Buck loves Doe

Work & Money

  • Prov 23:4              Do not overwork to be rich.
  • Prov 12:11           He who tills his land will be satisfied with bread, but he who follows  frivolity is devoid of  understanding.
  • Prov 16:26           The person who labors, labors for himself, for his hungry mouth drives him on.

Raising Children

  • Prov 22:6              Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.
  • Prov 29:17           Correct your son, and he will give you rest; Yes, he will give delight to your soul.

Choosing our Words

  • Prov 15:28          The heart of the righteous studies how to answer
  • Prov 15:1             A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.
  • Prov 29:11           A fool vents all his feelings, but a wise man holds them back.
  • Prov 13:3              He who guards his mouth preserves his life, but he who opens wide his lips shall have destruction.

Gold NuggetsHere’s a cool thing. There are 31 chapters of Proverbs and 31 days in most months. Perfectly laid out to read one chapter a day; bite size pieces of everyday wisdom. I read through Proverbs at least twice a year, and I’m always learning something new. You can never exhaust the wisdom of God.

Solomon said

 Happy is the man who finds wisdom, And the man who gains understanding, for her proceeds are better than the profits of silver, and her gain than fine gold.
Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace. Prov 3:13,14,17

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding. Prov 9:10-11

The fear of the Lord leads to life, and he who has it will abide in satisfaction. Prov 19:23

Ah yes, satisfaction. I like that word. I want “Satisfaction” to be the word I always use to describe my marriage, and I’m sure you do too. Let’s get some wisdom.

 

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