Delighting in our husbands- 20 years later

 

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I used to cry as I watched my husband go off to work in the mornings.  I loved him so much and could hardly bear to part with him until lunch when he would come home for his midday break.  Yes, as a young bride I was lonely without him.

I thought of him throughout the day.  Oh, won’t Steven love this!  I think I will do this for Steven…How long until he is home? I think I will surprise him with his favorite dessert.

I would listen as he talked and if he gave ANY hint of what he liked or disliked I made note of it to remember.  I made it a point to learn every detail of that man that I loved so much!  If he so much as hinted at something that he enjoyed, I saved it away in my mind’s eye.

20 years have gone by since those early days of marriage.  I don’t cry when he leaves anymore.  But, I do yearn and long for him when he is away. Everything is A-OK when he is home.

One thing I have noticed though.  We have 8 children now…18 down to 3 and life is sooo busy even on a quiet day. The days are long gone of wondering how I am going to fill my time.  Keeping the house in tiptop shape and filling the days with extra tidbits of productivity is a thing of the past. No, now time flies faster than we can blink, and the days become weeks and months before we know it.

And so, in the busyness, in the flying days, in the duties and responsibilities of a large family…it’s easy to forget.  It’s easy for me to forget to focus on Steven.  It’s easy for me to not think of him as much through the day.  It’s easy for my eyes to be on everything else, the children, the home, the schooling, the laundry…but to forget to make sure I am delighting my husband.  I need to remember those little (and big things) he loves.  I need to remember that when the children leave — we are together until death.  We have a lifetime bond that is the most important earthly relationship there is.  So, I need to remember to stop and focus…on him.

To remember his favorite dish again, to remember the spot he loves for me to rub on his back, to remember to focus on what is special to him….like it used to be 20 years ago.  And in doing so I am pleasing the Lord who made me a help meet for him.  Did you know that word help meet means “help suitable”.  I and I alone am suitable to be my man’s helper.  So, I am thankful for the reminder I have had of that lately to reshift my thoughts once again to serving and loving the man God has given me.  For in serving him I am serving the Lord!

What are some things that your husband delights in that you could focus on this week?

~~Feeling weary and worn down physically or mentally? Make sure to read my health testimony and some of the things that are helping me on my journey of healing from adrenal fatigue!
A Wise Woman Builds Her Home

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Do you have stretch marks?

I am sharing a post that was one of my top posts of 2011 today, may you be blessed by it…

Pregnant belly pink heart

Stretch marks…oh the dreaded words!  We try to prevent them, hide them, dread them. As I get greater and greater with child, my other children are amazed at the running tracks across my belly. After 7 babies, well you can just imagine the road map I have. The other day we were pointing out which child produced which stretch marks on my mountainous bump (as though we really know, right?) My sweet dear husband looks upon them as badges of honor.
But, it made me stop and think. Dear sister, do you have stretch marks? I can guarantee you do…even without having a single baby.  You see, we all have areas where the Lord has been stretching us over the years.  Times when He has caused us to grow and stretch beyond what we thought we were capable of.  We felt the burn as we grew and it was not always pleasant.  And often we see the marks those trials left behind.  We might even try to cover them up, not wanting others to see the pain we felt through that trial. But, sisters we have no need to deny that they are there.  Those reminders of past stretching are a sign of being blessed. It is those whom the Lord loves that He chastens. If you have stretch marks that have been for His glory, then you can have cause to rejoice.  We glory in our tribulations–knowing the Master Gardener is at work. Oh, our bodies are not what they once were, once we bear unto the Lord, they are permanently changed.  But, it is sign of His work upon us, that these scars are left.  And so our souls are changed, made more like Him.  Sanctified. So sisters, examine your stretch marks today…and thank the Lord for giving them to you!

A Wise Woman Builds Her Home

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Single Titus 2 Sisters- The Question

This post was originally posted 4 years ago today.  Stefanie is now a happy wife and mother to two children!

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As a follow up from yesterday’s post, may you be blessed to hear from the heart of my mother’s helper, who has become like part of our family.. .

“So what do you do?”

Or, when I was younger, “What do you plan to do when you finish school?”

Not that there’s anything wrong with the question.

People are simply being friendly, making conversation, getting to know me better. The discomfort comes from the previous experiences  I’ve had of my answer causing disappointment, or confusion, and I often feel misunderstood.

My answer to the first question?

Right now my main job is working as a mother’s helper.

To the second question?

All I ever wanted to do was to be a wife and mom. That’s how I was brought up, that’s what my Mom did, what my friends’ mom did… I really didn’t know another way of life.

Then almost three years ago I moved out of my parents’ house. There were a lot of things to work through, and one of them was, learning, “What do I believe, what are my convictions in this area, what does the Lord want me to do, how can I glorify Him?”  A lot of prayer, searching the scriptures, and heart conversations with friends went into this question.

Perhaps my situation is unusual, but I now find myself a single woman trying my best with the Lord’s help to live out my calling as a Titus 2 woman. I wish I had some perfect formula or set of directions to share with you on how this works, but I don’t.

What I can tell you is that I’ve learned how dependent I am on the Lord for everything. As I look back and trace His hand in my life over the past years and see the many ways He has provided for me and helped me… I realize how much I have to be thankful for.

I’ve always had a roof over my head, and food to eat.

I have work to do in the safety of a Christian home.

People to love, and people who love me.

A wonderful church, and mercies and grace that are new every morning.

He’s even given me sweet babies to help care for, to love, to pray for…..As I write this I feel ashamed that I can have trouble trusting Him with my future.

I find that so often as a woman I’m told that I can’t be satisfied or fulfilled in raising children or working in the home..that I have just ‘settled’ when I could have had so much more. I should go back to school (please don’t think I’m speaking against studying and learning here), get a job, do more– have more, more, more, more…….

But, I ask you…

What could be more important than bringing up (or in my case helping to bring up) the next generation? Than living according to God’s word, building His kingdom here on earth?

That’s not to say it’s always fun or easy – if I said that you would know I wasn’t being honest with you! But I can say that I am so thankful the Lord has given me the opportunity to do this work for Him and that He does take care of those who follow Him.

There is no shame in following God’s calling!

I love this quote from a favorite book, Stepping Heavenward

 

And do you really think that God notices such little things?”
“My dear child, what a question! If there is any one truth I would gladly impress on the mind of a young Christian, it is just this, that God notices the most trivial act, accepts the poorest, most threadbare little service, listens to the coldest, feeblest petition, and gathers up with parental fondness all our fragmentary desires and attempts at good works. Oh, if we could only begin to conceive how He loves us, what different creatures we should be!”
~ Elizabeth Prentiss
(Stepping Heavenward)

 

Do you ever stop and think about the fact that the Lord sees everything we do for Him? He sees the choices made for Him even when we’re afraid, or don’t see how it’s going ‘to work’? The dishes we wash, bathrooms we clean, the crying babies we comfort, all the many jobs that go along with working in the home?
He also sees our tears, and saves them. Remembering that and all that He has done for me makes me love Him and want to follow Him.

 

Yet being misunderstood is hard, and when it’s by those we love, can be painful. I know that

from experience. In many ways my own family doesn’t understand the choices I’ve made as I’ve tried to follow the Lord. It’s easy for me to feel vulnerable, lonely, or like I don’t fit in anywhere.

But as I was recently reminded from the pulpit, it’s normal for a Christian to feel like they don’t fit in, …..as it says in Hebrews,

“They were strangers and pilgrims on the earth……But now they desire a better country, that is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city,”

There is a place for us, we’ll belong, we’ll be at home. That is such a comfort and encouragement for me to remember!

Before I end this post I do want to say thank you to the people who when they heard my answer to ‘the question’ gave me encouragement. You were, and are, a blessing!

 

As a single woman who desires to be found in the service of her Lord, Stefanie is daily looking to Him for grace. Stefanie is kept busy in many areas of service for her church and is a special blessing to our family as a mother’s helper in our home.  Update:  Stefanie is happily married and loves spending her days caring for her husband and two precious children!!

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Where are your eyes?

We now have three additional drivers in our house currently.  My oldest is experienced and independant, my second born nearly there and my third born just learning the road.

We live in South Carolina and for those of you who do not know what that means, let’s just say the roads are twisty, turny, curvy and THIN!  Yes, often these back road make you wish you could put your vehicle on a diet, especially a certain 15 passenger van.

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One of the hardest things for me is the night driving on these small, dark roads.  With the cars coming towards you and the glare shining in your eyes.  We instruct our children, when you get to where you can’t see, just focus on your line on the right.  Why?

Because you turn toward what you look at!  

If you focus on the glare of the car in front of you, your car will automatically pull towards that light.

And I got to thinking, is this not a biblical principle?

We will turn towards what we focus on.  

When Peter walked on water as long as Jesus was in his sight he stayed this way…but the minute he looked at the water, he sank right into it!

So, this begs the question…where is my focus?  Where is your focus?

As moms we can get so caught up in our daily duties we forget to keep our minds on Christ and our thoughts trusting in Him.  We get discouraged, cast down, and fatigued.

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Sometimes this means we have to talk back to ourselves as David did and say “Why are thou cast down oh my soul, hope thou in God!”

When the glare of the world’s discouragement shines into your eyes, where are you going to look?  Where am I going to look?!

~~Feeling weary and worn down physically or mentally? Make sure to read my health testimony and some of the things that are helping me on my journey of healing from adrenal fatigue!

 

A Wise Woman Builds Her Home

 

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