Friday, April 18, 2008

Love and Marriage... go together like a horse (bucking bronco) and carriage

“Marriage is the merciless revealer, the great white searchlight turned on the darkest places of human nature.” – Katherine Anne Porter

“Marriage is the Crucible in which we realize our darkest nature. We discover things about ourselves we do not like, and we wonder tough times if there is any hope for improvement.”
“Forgiveness. We are stingy when giving it to others. It’s hard to love people so different from us. Nonetheless, we are called to love even the unlovely and to serve even those who cannot repay us ( Luke 14) IF we let Differences get in love’s way, we shrink our world and become little self-islands. How boring. And taken to logical extreme, loving only those who can relate to and who don’t challenge us ensures that we’ll never love God much either. He is incredibly different than us.”
Love is learned and marriage is the most demanding classroom of love.
The need to comfort your inner darkness is not the same anywhere else as it is in marriage. The hell you have faced and experienced can grow your soul. You can be more loving, caring, understanding, shrewd, authentic, and honest. You can be less judgmental. You can become a brighter redemptive force of light – even if your spouse or loved one does not change. Your bigger soul will become more attractive. So much of this growth revolves around forgiveness. There exists what some might mistakenly call a selfish side to the act of pardoning someone for wrongdoing. This quality isn’t selfish, though- just mutually beneficial.
“Forgiveness is an act of self-defense, a tourniquet that stops the fatal bleeding of resentment.” – Gary Thomas
“Forgiveness is a love practiced among people who love poorly” – Henri Nouwen

“If you think it’s too hard to forgive someone who has done horrible things, you need to think again. You can love the sinner and at the same time hate the sin.
– excerpts from Paul & Sandy Coughlin

Sunday, April 13, 2008


In the past year and before my life has been greatly affected by harmful gossip. Gossip just plain hurts people. So while many may innocently "dish," "get the goods," or hear "the dirt" on someone, God doesn't take gossip lightly. He says our tongues are set on fire by hell (James 3:6). He commands us not to gossip. For example, Proverbs 4:24 reminds us to keep corrupt talk from our lips. And God doesn't want us listening to gossip, either. Hearing gossip is about as bad as spreading it, since you can't erase the negative words you've heard about a person. Proverbs 26:22 says, "The words of a gossip are like choice morsels; they go down to a man's inmost parts."

A wise and godly friend gave our bible study group the THINK questions to ask before saying something. Is what you're about to say True, Helpful, Informative, Necessary and Kind? If not, it probably should not be verbalized. I try to use this a quick check when making a decision about what I should do or say.
Ask yourself questions based on the Rotary International's Four Way Test: Is what we're saying the truth? Is it fair to all concerned? Will it build better relationships? Is the talk beneficial?

Use Philippians 4:8 as a guide: "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things."

As Beth Moore writes in When Godly People Do Ungodly Things, "Prayer keeps the mouth open before God on the matter, rather than open before others … We have no business gossiping about members of the Body of Christ [or nonbelievers for that matter]. If we would turn the time we spent discussing the other's life into prayer time instead, no telling what would happen to the glory of God."
As I try to focus on what's good to discuss, I remember to put it to the test of Philippians 4:8. And what if there's nothing good to say? Then in the words of our mothers' age-old advice, "If you can't find anything good to say, then say nothing at all!

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

jadyn 4-08


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jadyn 4-08


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april in the park



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April in Tulsa Time




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