Category Archives: Family

How to Keep Your Marriage Blossoming

As mentioned in my previous post, this past weekend was one of the best Easter weekends I can remember.  Part of what made it special was an answer to a prayer that I have been praying for many years.  I have a very dear friend who attended our church while she was a college student.  She led worship at our church and was a leader in the youth group as well.  Through the years we became close friends.  I have been praying for the Lord to send her a Godly husband for about eight years now.  She moved back to her home town two years ago and finally met Mr. Right.

A picture of me and my husband and the happy couple:

Friends

She and Mr. Right came for a visit this weekend and we were able to give her a bridal shower, which I was grateful to be part of planning and organizing.  It was a lovely shower with yummy food and beautiful decorations, mostly fresh flowers.  Based on the flower theme, I was given the special honor of sharing some words of wisdom with the bride-to-be.  What follows is a rendition of what I shared, which is a good reminder for all of us, no matter how long we have been married.

To keep your marriage blossoming, do two things:  #1) water it and #2) remove the weeds.

#1)  Water it by:

  • The first way you water a marriage is by remembering that God sent you your husband as a blessing.  Remember the special feelings you are feeling right now.  You are feeling grateful to the Lord for sending you your husband.  You are feeling blessed and full of hope for the future.  Remember these feelings, they will keep your marriage blossoming as the years go by.
  • Another way to water a marriage is through prayer.  Many women pray for a husband before he comes their way.  Prayer, then, becomes a significant part of your relationship before you even have a relationship.  Prayer is what planted the seed of a future relationship and prayer continues to water the seed that causes a marriage to grow and blossom.  Don’t neglect praying for your husband, now that you got him, keep praying for him.  Pray for wisdom & strength for him as the leader of your family, pray for your attitude towards him,  pray that the Lord will protect your relationship, pray that you can be a good example of Christ & the church to those who see you.  Pray Bible verses over your relationship.  A great one to start with is Ephesians 4:32, Amplified  And become useful and helpful and kind to one another, tenderhearted (compassionate, understanding, loving-hearted), forgiving one another [readily and freely], as God in Christ forgave you.  If you make prayer a priority in your relationship – praying for each other and praying with each other – it will grow.
  • There are many ways to water a marriage.  Three important ways are to water it by remembering the beginning feelings of love, water it with prayer and finally, water it with kindness.  Being kind means you are friendly, generous and considerate.  Kindness is expressed not only in what we say, but more importantly, in how we say it.  You can water your relationship with kindness by becoming a good friend to your husband.  Actively listen to him when he talks about things that are important to him, do things with him that he likes to do or at least watch him do them.  Be generous with your husband.  Make sure he doesn’t always get the leftovers of your time, attention or efforts.  Be considerate of him and his feelings.  It can take very little to keep a husband happy – show him he is needed, wanted and liked by you.  Make sure you tell him you love him.  Make sure you show him you like him.

To keep your marriage blossoming, #1) water it and

#2) Remove the weeds.  Weeds can crop up in every relationship.  Weeds are detrimental because they suck the nutrients away from that which you are trying to nurture and grow.  There will be many weeds that will try to rear their ugly head throughout the years – pride, disappointment, fear.  But I want to warn you of one common and dangerous weed called “comparison”.  Scripture tells us that comparison is unwise.  Yet it is human nature to compare.  You see how a friend’s husband treats her & you compare that with how your husband treats you.  You see the type of marriage others have and you compare that to you & your husband’s.  Comparing your husband to someone else’s is like comparing apples & oranges – you can’t compare them because they’re not the same.  As soon as you see a weed of comparison trying to rear its ugly head rip it up before it takes root.

For that matter, anytime you see a weed of any sort crop up, yank it out as soon as possible.  When you look at a garden and see a bunch of weeds – what you are really seeing is neglect.  Don’t neglect your marriage through the years.  Tend to your garden.  Tending a garden requires a lot of work, but the beauty, fragrance and fruit that is produced is well worth the effort.

To keep your marriage blossoming, water it and remove the weeds.  Thankfully, you have the full resources of the Master Gardener, Jesus Himself.  He chose you and your husband for each other and he desires for your marriage to bear fruit for His kingdom.  As you look to Jesus, he will be your hope, comfort, strength and peace and will allow your marriage to bloom and blossom throughout the years.

Are you tending your garden?

Your Friend in Ministry,

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Celebrating Your Kid’s Birthdays

Last week my son turned 12.  Birthdays are kinda a big deal at the Posthuma house.  Always have been always will be.  In fact, I remember our oldest daughter’s first birthday.  My husband and I planned a great party for her.  That first birthday started the tradition of mom and dad working together to make birthdays special and it is something we LOVE to do together.

This year was no different.  In fact, this year my son had three separate occasions to be celebrated (this doesn’t always happen).  First family and family-friends dinner, second his actual birthday and finally a sleepover with his best friend.

There are many ways you can celebrate a person.  One of the most effective ways is by using the Five Love Languages:

1)      Words of affirmation

2)      Quality time

3)      Acts of service

4)      Physical touch

5)      Gifts

Most people have 1 or 2 primary languages in which they receive love.  However, research shows they aren’t determined in children until after age eight.  Therefore, kids need to be shown love in all of the above.  What better way to make sure your child feels loved than by incorporating each of these into their birthday celebration?

This is how we celebrated our son using all five love languages:

1)      Words of affirmation – each year at the family/family-friends dinner (birthday boy or girl gets to choose the meal) we set aside time to share what we appreciate about the birthday boy or girl and how we have seen them grow over the past year.  Anyone who wants to share is invited to.  Some of the things shared for our son this year were, “You have made your faith your own”, “You are such a gentleman that likes to help”, “You have good manners and handle yourself well when talking on the phone”, “You are maturing and taking on more responsibilities”.

tj bday

2)      Quality time – no matter how old kids get, they need lots and lots of quality time with their parents.  My son’s birthday was on a Thursday this year, which is a very busy day for my husband.  However, he cancelled both his early morning and evening appointments to be home to spend the morning and evening with my son.  Our daughter went to youth group that night, but he got to stay home and spend quality time with just his mom and dad.  Part of the quality time spent included an act of service.

3)      Acts of service – this year one of our gifts to our son was spending over two hours working with him to clean his room.  This was no small task.  In fact, this was quite a big deal for me, because usually I can’t stay in his room too long before I feel like I am going to have a mild panic attack.  However, 5 big black trash bags later that were donated or tossed in the trash, we helped him get his room in great shape.  Even though the gift of cleaning his room didn’t seem like a great gift to begin with, he greatly appreciated the time and service we gave him.  In fact, when we were done, my son literally presented me with a medal because I had survived a major room clean with my patience intact.

Medal of Honor

4)      Physical touch – there is lots of physical touch in our family.  On birthday mornings, we go into the birthday boy or girl’s room and wake them up by singing them “Happy Birthday” and giving them hugs and kisses.

5)      Gifts – birthday gifts are a given!  However, it is amazing to me how they can become of secondary importance.  What is remembered, isn’t the gifts, it’s how special they felt and the presence of important people in their life that gets remembered.

Birthdays are an important part of our family traditions.  We make a big deal about birthdays because it’s a way to show how happy we are that our children were born, that we love them and are so grateful they are a part of our family.  This lets them know that their life has value and importance.  Also, it allows them to be the main focus for a few days.  This shows them that even with parents who both serve in ministry, they are our first and greatest priority.

The next time one of your kid’s birthday rolls around I encourage you to make it a big deal with your own family traditions (or borrow one of ours).  Our children are one of God’s greatest gifts to us and that is something to be celebrated!

Your Friend in Ministry,

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