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The Word For Today

Husbands and wives 5



'Husbands...live with your wives, and treat them with respect.' 1 Peter 3:7 NIV

You must get to know your wife and respect her needs. When God made woman, he made her to be a receiver and responder. He made her a little softer, a little warmer, a little more emotional in order to respond to you. A woman responds to a man in such a way that the very thing he wants, he will receive by giving instead of demanding.

When your wife feels truly loved and secure you won't have to worry about her fulfilling her responsibility in the home. You won't have to wonder if you'll have an active, intimate, physical relationship. She'll be right there responding to your needs. But that means you must put your wife and family first. Sometimes that means saying, 'Sorry, guys, I can't go out with you tonight because I'm taking my wife on a date.' When you're that kind of husband, you'll get the kind of response you want without demanding it.

But be prepared; there may be issues festering under the surface that need to be dealt with before you can move forward as a couple. If so, be humble enough to say, 'I'm sorry I've failed you. I haven't loved you the way I was supposed to and I know it has affected our relationship. I haven't given you the time and attention you need. But starting today I'm going to change. With God's help, I'm going to try to love you the way you deserve to be loved.' Now, sir, your wife may faint when she first hears it, but if you follow through, you can have the marriage you always dreamed of.

Soulfood: Neh 8-10, Mark 12:13-27, Ps 78:56-64, Prov 24: 5-9

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Husbands and wives 4



'In Adam all die.' 1 Corinthians 15:22 NIV

The Bible says, 'In Adam all die' (1 Corinthians 15:22 NIV). Why Adam? He was called to be the head of the first family, therefore he was responsible for what happened in the home. As people, husbands and wives are equal under God. But in marriage each has a different role. What happened in the first home was the result of two people wanting to live independently of God. That's the way many relationships function today. One or both partners choose to live their lives separately from God's rule and authority. It shows up in the huge divorce rate we're experiencing. And that doesn't take into consideration that many who remain married say they're not happy and wouldn't marry the same person again.

Conflict arises when you and your spouse have different histories, learning styles, personalities and backgrounds. One spouse might say, 'My father raised me like this,' or 'My mother always did that.' We all have our own idea of what makes up 'the knowledge of good and evil' - what's right and what's wrong for a marriage. Everyone has an opinion. The problem is, you can spend your life arguing over opinions and get nowhere.

As followers of Christ, we're called to live our lives and build our marriages on biblical revelation, not personal intuition. Adam's job was to get God's viewpoint on issues pertaining to life and family, then share it with the other members of the family. How? By being a loving husband and modeling godly leadership. When a home functions this way, God's blessing will be present.

Soulfood: Neh 5-7, Mark 12:1-12, Ps 78:40-55, Prov 24:1-4

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Husbands and wives 3



'All your males are to appear before the Lord.' Exodus 34:23 NAS

God said, 'Three times a year all your males are to appear before the Lord...For I will drive out nations before you...enlarge your borders, and no man shall covet your land' (Exodus 34:23-24 NAS). Three times a year the men of Israel were to go on a spiritual retreat and seek God's guidance. And God promised to protect their families and their possessions while they were gone, and even to 'enlarge [their] borders' (Exodus 34:24 NAS).

So if you're a husband who wants God to protect your family and bless your endeavours, you must take the time to submit your thoughts, actions and decisions to his leadership. You'll never function successfully as the head of your family until you're under the headship of Christ. The best thing you can do in leading your home and building a great marriage is to ask the question, 'What is the mind of Christ in this matter?' (see 1 Corinthians 2:16). And then follow it. Once you've done that, you'll have your wife's full attention and cooperation. Why? Because she's no longer arguing with you and your opinions. Now you've brought Christ and his Word into the equation. It may take time for your wife to trust your leadership and respect your thinking, but as she sees you walk with God and practice his principles, she'll come to trust you and feel secure.

When a woman says to her husband, 'I need you to hold me,' she's not necessarily talking about physical intimacy. She's talking about her God-given need for security. She needs a husband she can love and trust. And God can make you such a husband.

Soulfood: Neh 1-4, Mark 11:27-33, Ps 78:32-39, Prov 23:29-35

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