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WHILE WAITING, REMEMBER AND BE THANKFUL

By:  Carol Clemans

I’m writing to the person who is waiting for an answer from God for an urgent need and the wait has been long.  What do we do when we are in a dilemma or adversity and need an answer from God, yet He is being silent? Psalm 77: 11 – 13 (NLT) says, “I recall all you have done, O Lord; I remember your wonderful deeds of long ago. They are constantly in my thoughts. I cannot stop thinking about them. O God, your ways are holy.  Is there any god as mighty as you?”

Being thankful cannot be based on our emotions.  Being thankful to God for His blessings is a decision. Remembering the blessings of life from the past is a place to start. We only have the ability to look at our past and our present.  The Lord is the one who knows our past, our present and our future.  Our life is like a tapestry in the making. All we can see is the underside of our ‘life’s tapestry’, but God sees the beginning and the end and everything in between from his heavenly perspective.

God tells us that IN everything we are to give thanks.  We must not allow our current situation to dictate our willingness to be thankful. Be thankful that God loved us so much that He planned before the foundation of the world a way for us to be restored to an intimate relationship with Him by His death on the cross. We must give God thanks for the way He brought us to Himself (our personal story of salvation). We can be thankful for the blessings we have experienced in the past and know if God provided then, He will provide now for whatever we need in HIS timing.

Remember the times of answered prayer in the past. Allow them to be ‘landmarks’ in your memory when meditating on the goodness of God. If there is heaviness due to grief, remember the good times with that person. God promised to those who mourn that they shall be comforted. If it’s a prayer for an unsaved loved one, just continue to be faithful to God and allow the person to observe your thankfulness to God for salvation by your daily walk with the Lord. If you need financial provision, pray for direction and wisdom from God and speak out your thankfulness for what you need. If you need healing, don’t give up. Praise God daily for that healing. These are all done by a conscious choice to walk in faith and thanksgiving.

God is in control. There is no other God.  He is mighty and holy. We must place our lives and times in His hands knowing He does all things well. I like to remember that God has promised a future with Him, not just in this life, but I look for His soon coming.  This hope makes me rejoice in thanksgiving that my God is alive and I have a promise from Him for eternal JOY.

© Carol Clemans – September 2009

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By:  Carol Clemans (carol@carolclemans.org)

Certified Pastoral Counselor/Bible Seminar Teacher

Life Enrichment Ministries, Inc. (501c3) (636 448-0121)

Love is a many splendor thing, but to remain exciting, loving and fulfilling it takes work, work, work.  We will celebrate 40 years of marriage  August 1st of  2010.  My parents had almost 62 years of marriage before death parted them.  Through our experience on this marriage road and through watching other family, friends and counseling couples, the following five ingredients are essentials that must be nurtured continually:

1. LOVE:  GOD is love.  We know about passionate love in marriage which is a gift from God and intended for pleasure, but if we do not have the deep love of God that is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost, even passionate love will ebb and flow with great intensity if we do not learn to love with God’ s love.

I Cor. 13: 4 – 8 (Amp) – “Love endures long and is patient and kind; love never is envious nor boils over with jealousy, is not boastful or vainglorious, does not display itself haughtily.  It is not conceited (arrogant and inflated with pride); it is not rude (unmannerly) and does not act unbecomingly,  Love (God’s love in us) does not insist on its own rights or its own way, for it is not self-seeking; it is not touchy or fretful or resentful; it takes no account of the evil done to it (it pays no attention to a suffered wrong).  It does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail.  Love bears up under anything and everything that comes, is ever ready to believe the best of every person, its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and it endures everything (without weakening).

LOVE NEVER FAILS (never fades out or becomes obsolete or comes to an end).”

WOW! WOW! WOW!  If every wife and husband who love God would live by the above definition of love, we would have continual joyous marriages in our churches and what a tremendous witness that would be to the world!

2.  SELFLESSNESS:  One definition of this is sacrificial loving.  Selfishness is the root of all marital problems.  In a loving marriage, each spouse seeks ways to please the other.  It is a fulfillment of the Golden Rule – “Do unto others (spouse) as you would have them do unto you.”  The wonderful outcome is that both husband and wife have their needs and desires met because both are willing to sacrifice their selfishness and become selfless.

Ephesians 5: 21 – 33 –  is the clear blueprint for a God centered marriage that has actions of being selfless.   When the husband loves as Christ loves, submission from the wife becomes a non-issue (it’s automatic)  because she can’t resist that lovin’ man.  This is also the principle of reaping what you sow.

3.  COMMITMENT:  The simple definition of this in action is saying to your spouse, “I will never leave you or forsake you.”  Let’s go back to God’s example.  He gave Himself for us to prove His everlasting love.  Marriage is a sacred commitment before God and man to your one and only wife/husband.  Never allow the word divorce to be spoken in your home.    When we allow the Love of God to rule our hearts and actions and we refuse to allow our selfishness to control us, then commitment will reign in our marriage.  We won’t allow another person inside our emotional boundary other than our spouse.  We will put hedges of  protection around us and our actions to protect the integrity of our marital commitment.

4. RESPECT:   Respect is to honor and cherish your wife/husband.  Respect must be the rule even in the middle of conflict.  Remember, love is kind, patient, etc.  We have no excuse to be disrespectful in any circumstances.  Husbands, as the Priest of the Home, T.D. Jakes, in his book “Celebrating Marriage – Six Pillars from Ephesians”,  says, “Husband, tell your wife repeatedly how special she is to you and that you believe she was created just for you.  She was fashioned and formed to fit with you, to strengthen you, and to help you.  Tell her that you rely on her more than you can express; that other than Jesus, she is the most important person in your life.  She is the one with whom you want to share your heart and life.  She is the one with whom you want to spend all your days on earth.”  Let your actions show it and your wife’s response will be overwhelming towards you with much love and respect in return.

5. COMMUNICATION:   Talk, talk, talk.  Listen, listen, listen. I’m not describing surface talk.   A happy husband and wife will make time in their busy schedules to share with each other and be good listeners.  Reflecting back to your spouse what is said to you is  one key to good communication.  Good communication is work and takes time.  Listen with your heart.  Share with “I” messages –  “I feel——–(whatever).”  As we must communicate with God in prayer, we must communicate with our spouse on a deep level, then all areas of our marital relationship will be blessed.

© CAROL CLEMANS – January 2010

PARENTS, WAKE UP!

Carol Clemans

The most precious gift you can give to your children is to love your husband/wife according to I Corinthians 13 and Ephesians 5. Children create their image of God by how Daddy loves Mommy and by how Daddy and Mommy love them. The secret to this type of love is dying daily to selfishness. I counsel adult children who had parents that abused them verbally, emotionally and physically – including sexual abuse.  Even though these adult children have a salvation experience with God, they struggle with their distorted God-concept because of how they were parented.  It’s hard to trust their ‘heavenly Father’ when their earthly parents were abusive in the home.

Young parents need to WAKE UP to the powerful influence they have on their children’s concept of God. The secret to a God-centered marriage is Ephesians 5:21 KJ – “Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.” When a Mom and Dad live in submission to God and each other, peace and harmony will rule their home. Love for God, each other and the children will manifest itself through their actions.

God’s love is patient, kind, never jealous, boastful, proud or rude. It is not selfish. It is not irritable!!!!!!!  (How do you treat others when things don’t go your way?) God’s love forgives and ‘forgets’. God’s love only rejoices in truth, never gives up, never loses faith and is always hopeful. God’s love is faithful and endures through all circumstances.

Parents, you are your children’s ‘god with skin on.’  Your children need to see in you God’s character – GOD IS LOVE!!  Instead of repeating generational dysfunction in the family, be accountable to God and give the gift of love to your children and grandchildren through the life changing power of the Holy Ghost!

© Carol Clemans – December 2009

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