Marriage is the most basic of human relationships, it is within marriage that individuals have their emotional, physical, familial and financial needs met. Marriage is serious business; the choice of a marriage partner is perhaps the most important decision to be made in life. No other relationship greatly influences every other areas of life. However, marriage has been used by many as a legal sanction for exerting one’s own rights over another, to insure financial security at another’s expense or to provide self identity within society the good news is that God‘s plans for marriage is far different. Marriage is a mystery and God Himself is the solution to that mystery. Marriage as instituted by God is the union of two separate individuals into one flesh. Each partner finds satisfaction and completeness in the presence of one another and of God. This fundamental principle concerning marriage must be understood for the relationship to be successful, rewarding and pleasing to God. Since God Himself established marriage it was His idea and not man’s idea He Himself determined the boundaries of the relationship. We as Christians therefore can expect guidance from His written word, support from fellow believers, positive role models in the Church and especially ever present help from the Divine Marriage Counselor within in the person of the Holy Spirit. A Christian marriage begins with vows to one another and to God. Mutual love, honor and commitment are covenanted for a lifetime. Yet often the marriages of Christians are shattered by divorce just like the people without commitment to Christ. Perhaps your marital boat has capsized and ready to sink. Do not give up help is on the way.
This issue of the Lighthouse blog is designed to get you in contact with the Master Builder who made your marriage craft. What blueprints and tools are needed for marriage under construction? Is there a manual to help with the maintenance?
The Bible specifies a builder Ps127:1 Jesus is the Builder of any successful marriage. It suggests the best construction method Matt7:24. Listening to and obeying the words of Jesus are the mortar and bricks that are used to construct a permanent marriage. The Bible is the most accurate marriage manual available on sale today. 2Tim3:16. Jesus promised that if you will be a wise builder, your marriage will stand against the flood of problems that threatened from without. Matt7:25.
Tools for Building a Solid Marriage.
The Role of Salvation. The most critical question you will ever have to answer is “what are you doing with Jesus? Acts4:12 Salvation can only be found in Christ but being born again is not enough to withstand the temptations that come your way. Many people are born again but they do not experience the joy of knowing Jesus on a personal, day to day basis. Asking Jesus to save you and inviting Him to stay as a permanent resident is an important decision to make, it is comparable to buying a comprehensive insurance protection. Jesus’ call to discipleship is to make Him both Savior and Lord of your life. You cannot expect all your marital problems to disappear simply by deciding for Jesus, but with His guidance because He is a permanent Resident in your life and marriage you will scale through the hurdles Pr4:11.
The Role of the Holy Spirit. Very few Christians realize that the Resident Holy Spirit is the greatest marriage counselor possible. He does the following for you: He counsels Jn 14:16 He encourages Acts 9:31. He prays for you Rom 8:27. He will reveal practical ways to obey God’s commandments and as you mature spiritually His fruits will be evident in your life Gal5:22-23. Each fruit is a manifestation of the character of Jesus. God also in addition to the fruits gives the supernatural gifts of the Spirit. These are available in your marriage to minister to one another. 1Cor12:7-10. The Holy Spirit delights in helping you but there is a condition. You must first ask Lk 11:13.
Growing in Christ. If you were to choose an ideal mate, your deepest longing is to find someone who loves you unconditionally, who thinks you are precious and who if necessary would give up his/her very life for you. When God drew up the guidelines for marriage He kept those needs in mind. Eph5:25 the love between a husband and his wife is compared to God’s infinite love for His people. Imagine a triangle with God at the apex, the husband at one corner and the wife at the other. As they move upward towards God, they draw increasingly closer to each other. The closer they get to the source of love the better they are to love and encourage one another. Christ -like love is the basis for the marriage relationship in which two become one flesh. Christ feels the deepest form of intimacy for His Bride. Eph 5:25-27 and 1Jn 4:10—12. As we follow Christ’s example, our relationship becomes far richer and more satisfying than we ever dreamed. Husband and wife are to love each other unconditionally and sacrificially as Christ our Perfect Example loved His Bride the Church.
- Christian Marriage (thechristianpundit.org)
- 5 Steps to Building Your Christian Marriage (beltwaychurch.wordpress.com)
Pro 14:1 “Every wise woman builds her house, but the foolish one tears it down with her own hands” (AMP).
Pro 12:4 “A virtuous and worthy wife (earnest and strong in character) is a crowning joy to her husband….” (AMP) For you to excel in life and in the family as a homemaker, you need wisdom.
Pro 4:7-9, admonishes us to befriend wisdom, for she will give to our heads a wreath of gracefulness, a crown of beauty and glory will she deliver to us, if we allow her to direct us, she will bring to us profiting in all our endeavors including homemaking.
What is a Home?
A home is a dwelling place, but not every dwelling place is a home. A home is a place where you live, especially with your family. It is your haven; a place you go to for comfort, peace and tranquility. A place of safety, where the hostility happening outside cannot reach you. The difference between a house and a home is the presence of a wise woman. A wise woman transforms her house into a home by her actions; she is the one according to the scriptures that builds the house, transforming it into a home, which becomes a safe place for herself, her loved ones and everyone who comes her way. She turns the mortar and bricks of the house into a home, where love, joy, peace and hospitality can be felt. A woman who allows the wisdom of God to direct her affairs in life is the heartthrob of her husband. She is the Virtuous woman of Proverb 31:10-31. The kingdom of God is a kingdom of choices, God will only advice you, but whatever is your choice, you will receive the reward. The choice is yours, either to be a wise builder or a destroyer Deut30:15-20. In fact, you are a product of the choices you made yesterday. I can hear the Spirit say, choose well today so that you can have a better tomorrow.
How do you build a house and transform it into a home as a wise woman?
Pro24:3-4 “Through skillful and godly wisdom is a house (a life, a home, a family) built and by understanding it is established (on a sound and good foundation). And by knowledge shall all its chambers (of every area) be filled with all precious and pleasant riches” (AMP).
Pro 9:1 “Wisdom has built her house she has hewn out and set her seven (perfect number of) pillars” (AMP).
Let us look at the seven vital pillars for transforming the house into a home.
A. Qualitative Walk with God. Matt 6:33. God desires that you develop your spiritual life in order to be a wise homebuilder. You are to examine your heart condition towards God. If your relationship with your Maker is in order it will reflect in your relationship with your family, that is your husband and children. Without Christ, your life is like a super car without key, you cannot get it started, make it work or use it. You cannot go anywhere with it. A relationship with God is the key to all life situations, including your marriage. God alone possesses the instruction manual for your marriage and that wonderful home you dream of. The first pillar in building that wonderful home you desire and deserve is seeking first the kingdom of God and His righteousness. As you do this diligently, shunning all distractions from within and without, Jesus Himself will see to it that your house is transformed into a home. Decide today to put God first every day of your life, and your life and marriage will never be the same again.
B. Be a Supportive Teammate. Eccl 4:9-12. Your house can only be transformed into a home, if you accept your role as a supportive teammate with your husband. You are to compliment his efforts and not to order him around. You have an important part to play in making your house a safe haven for your loved ones. We women, tend to forget that the success of the marriage depends on us as much as it depends on the man. If we refuse to play out our role in the marriage, what we will have at the end of the day is a “madhouse” where everything is in chaos instead of the blissful home we desired and deserved.
Let us quickly remind ourselves of the roles of husbands and wives:
He is the head, so he is to lead in the marriage and family, before the fall, the man and his wife were doing their things their own way; but after the fall a new order was set in place Gen3:16; Eph5:22-24 and Col3:18. In the same way you submit to the Lord, you are to willingly follow your husband’s leadership. He is to work and provide for his wife and children 1Tim5:8. He is to love his wife as Christ loved the Church Eph5:25.
She is to help her husband, as wives we are God’s solution to our husbands’ need for a helper and companion. We are to submit to our husbands, this is a non negotiable commandment to wives from God. We must adapt ourselves to our husbands’ leadership and their way of leading. You are expected to respect your husband as a Christian wife, you are to reverence, respect, praise and honor your husband; failure to do this, is a sin in the eyes of God. If you have a good relationship with God carrying out this commandment will be cheap and easy for you. You are to love your husband that is be affectionate, treat your husband in a loving manner, cherish him and enjoy him as your best friend. To build a priceless home, you must follow God’s plan for your life and marriage. Do not postpone your obedience to your roles as a wife or make it conditional to your husband’s fulfillment of his assignment. Do not wait for your husband to change before you perform your roles. Instead of rating our husbands, let us check ourselves and prayerfully ask God to help us make amend where we are lacking in carrying out our roles. No matter who our husbands are, and their spiritual condition our roles still remains: Help; Follow; Respect and Love Your husband’s failures and shortcoming in discharging his duties does not give you the right to sin.
C. A Quality Prayer Life. Lk 18:1-8. Jesus admonished us that we ought to pray and not to faint. How is your prayer life? Most of us leave the praying to our husbands, agreed that they are our spiritual heads, but as their help meet it is also part of our assignment from God to pray for our family. In fact, we are to pray without ceasing 1Thess 5:17. You are the spiritual watchman of that home. The biblical positions of the “watchman” are: on the way of the city; walking about in the city and on the hills and mountain tops. You are to observe closely the activities going on within the house; make your family ready to accept the Lord and be obedient to His word, that is prepare them for eternity; to recognize and confront disorderly or unruly behavior within the home; to report all disobedience to the Spiritual High Priest of your home. Also you are to patrol the borders of your home, watching out for any encroachment of the enemy long before any attack is launched against your home. You can only carry out your duties as a watchman of your home by effective fervent prayer. As a watchman you must be able to hear from the Lord and warn the family Ezk3:17. To put it bluntly, your husband is where he is today by virtue of the amount of time you spent praying for him; the same goes for the state of affairs in your marriage. You cannot enjoy a blissful home standing straight, your knees must be bent in prayers always; because the devil does not like you as long as you do not belong to him, and you can only fight him on your knees. Whether you are engaged in prayers of thanksgiving; praise/worship; supplication; request or petition, your knees must be in a bent position. Let me tell you one secret why you must engage in meaningful prayer time; no matter how difficult your husband is, your prayers to God everyday concerning him, will change him to the kind of man you desire and deserve; and he will find himself doing things for you he never thought he could do. Friends, prayer works faster than nagging, try it and you will not regret it. To raise godly children we need prayers, because our children are likely to mix with some other children with questionable backgrounds in their schools and work places; it is our duty as mothers to pray and our prayers will help mold them in the way of the Lord Gen18:19; 2Tim3:15.
D. A Meaningful Intimacy Song of Sol. 7:1-12. It is God’s idea that sexual intimacy be a holy and confined blessing in marriage; however temporary the excitement of sexual expression may be, its abuse will bring enormous heart break and suffering. Sexual union is reserved for marriage alone Ex 20:14; Pr5:15-20. The bible teaches that sexual intimacy is to be enjoyed regularly so that the couple may avoid temptations 1Cor7:3-5. Sexual intercourse is an intimate expression of affection between husband and wife. In fact the bible says it is a duty the husband and wife own to each other, they are to be available to each other and not to deprive one another except by mutual agreement and only for a short period of time least satan tempts them for lack of self control. Christian couple should never engage in sexual selfishness, and as a Christian wife never use your body as a means of exploiting your husband, whether directly or indirectly. It is a sin, if you practice this shameful act you are not better than the harlot on the street who sells her body for what she can gain from men Pro7:10-21. There are better ways of getting your husband to do things for you than using your body. May the Lord give us understanding.
E. Hospitality Proverbs 31:20. As a Christian wife you must be hospitable. Remember your husband came out of a family. He was raised in a family that includes parents, siblings and other extended relations. You are to show love to them, the fact that the bible says a man should leave his father and mother and cleave to his wife, does not mean you are to neglect your parents in law and not respect and show them love. Remember the bible says honor your father and mother. Once you marry, your husband’s parents become your parents, so you must extend to them the same honor and respect you have for your parents. The scriptures tell us that whatsoever you sow you will reap Gal6:7, one day you will become a mother in law and the same treatment you gave to your mother in law will be given to you; I hope you enjoy it when the time comes. Eph5:1-2 advices us to be imitators of God and walk in love; pay evil deeds with good deeds and the Lord will reward you with the desire of your heart which is a blissful marriage and a happy home. Take example from Ruth in the bible Ruth 1:16-17, she respected her mother in law, she was loyal to her; she was a humble and teachable daughter in law. She served her mother in law from her heart and the Lord rewarded her by putting her name in the Book of the genealogy of His Son Jesus Christ Matt1:5. Write your name in gold in the heart of your loved ones by being a daughter in law and a mother in law after God’s Heart.
F. Good Money Management Proverbs 27:23-27. Money management is a sensitive issue in most marriages, but with the wisdom of God, the nightmare surrounding money management in marriage can be turned to a thing of joy. Managing money is an act that only the Holy Spirit can teach. You either manage money or it will manage you. In the book of Proverbs, the Holy Spirit showed us five keys to good money management. As a Christian wife, you are the Chief Accountant of your home, so you must be a skilled money manager in order for your husband to trust you with his money. The reason most husbands are not open to their wives about their true financial position is lack of trust. They do not trust their wives with money; so in order not to go bankrupt they remain close as a clam on money matters; this is not right, there should be absolute openness in marriage. My husband is completely and absolutely open with me concerning his financial position, because he knows that I am for him and not against him; he does not have to hide his cheque book from me, why? Because financially he trust me. If your husband is not opened to you financially, check yourself and the foundation upon which you built your marriage.
Let us consider these five nuggets of good money management from the Scriptures:
(1) Good Accounting System Pr 27:23: How good is your record keeping? Keep a good track of what you own, owe, earn and spend.
(2) Planning Pr 21:5: Have a budget; planning how we spend money is essential to good stewardship. Planned spending brings satisfaction while “impulse buying” can have devastating consequences.
(3) Saving Pr 21:20: If you plan well and spend wisely you should be able to save for the rainy day.
(4) Contentment Pr 15:16: More money is equal to joy and peace of mind. To have plenty of money to spend is very good no doubt, but it is the contentment we have with whatever is in our hands today that brings enjoyment and joy in the Holy Ghost Phil 4:11.
(5) Giving Pr 3:9-10: Honour God with whatever income or resources you have. As a good money manager, you can always squeeze out something from a very tight budget to give to the Lord; it is not in the quantity but in the quality. As you do this, you allow the Lord to reign in your life and begin a divine cycle of blessing for you.
G. Kingdom Service Col3:23-24. Every Christian is to serve the Lord. You are saved to serve, and not to be served. Your service is unto God and not unto man, this is the truth that brings dignity to service, in whatever capacity you are called to serve do it as unto the Lord. As a Christian wife interested in transforming her house to a home, bear the following in mind as you pursue your kingdom service:
Serve those at home first. Never give to others, what you have not first given to those in your home. Your first service is to your husband and children. Jesus speaking in Acts 1:8: we are to be witnesses to Him first in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria before the end of the earth. Your family is your Jerusalem so that is the first place to start your kingdom service.
Serve with your husband’s blessing and support. Before you go into ministry or volunteer to help in any way at the Church ask your husband first. Submit that vision you have to your husband, he is your spiritual head. To go off with the vision without his blessing is to be running around town without a head. If the vision is genuinely from God your husband will support it wholeheartedly, for God is not the Author of confusion, He will defend whatever He authors. When I told my husband about the vision the Lord gave me concerning Family Life and the Newsletter publication; he supported me wholeheartedly and gave me his blessing. In fact he is my Editor in Chief; I do the writing but he still find time from his busy schedule to edit every issue of the newsletter published by us. Because I have the support of my spiritual head it will be difficult for the devil to kill the vision or use the vision to destroy my marriage.
Serve in whatever capacity you can. You are to serve with a grateful heart to the Lord. No service is too menial for you to do for the Lord. You can sweep, sing, evangelise, etc. Whatever your hands and heart leads to do, do as unto the Lord. The Master needs the open hands, the willing feet and the praying heart.
As we put these seven perfect pillars together in their proper place, may the Lord transform our houses into homes where all the Christian graces are available in abundance Gal 5:22-23 May our homes become city of refuge to our loved ones and a place of comfort for all the Lord will bring our way in Jesus Name. Amen.
- Can You Have A Good Marriage Without God’s Wisdom? (yourgodmoments.wordpress.com)
- Homemaking in the 1950s and Now (littleowlski.wordpress.com)
You will probably have heard the story of “The Beauty and the Beast.” A young man who is pampered in his youth becomes increasingly arrogant and demanding as he grows older. Eventually, a wicked witch cast a spell on him transforming him into a beast as a punishment for his arrogance. His only hope for release was to be truly loved by a maiden; a seemingly impossible achievement. In his frustration he demanded to be loved, but his beastly behavior only drives people farther away until he was totally alone and isolated from the world of human beings. A woman saw something of value in the beast and begins to love him. That love transformed him back into a man and not just the man he was before, but a new, changed man. How could she have loved him as fearsome as he was? It’s a mystery, but it illustrates the power of a woman’s love.
Marriage is intended to be redemptive for both men and women. God has given women the privilege and the ability to bring life to our husbands with our love. Women have enormous power with men, which can be use for good or evil.
Consider these three examples from the Scripture:
The power of Delilah with Samson. Samson could take on an army of warriors, but he surrendered to the charms of one woman.
King David, who faced and felled a nine-foot Goliath, yet fell under the spell of Bathsheba. David was so obsessed, he was drawn away from his God into immorality, lies, and ultimately murder.
Solomon, who ruled over the golden years of Israel, but was captivated by the power of women. He became the first man to have seven hundred wives and three hundred concubines as stated in the Scriptures. Incredible!
A woman’s power over men has not lessened since those biblical days. Today, the advertising industry exploits this power in order to sell everything from cars to toothpaste. Magazines, billboards, posters, and store windows use attractive women, seductive women, and blatant sexual images to catch a man’s glance and capture his attention.
Every day men walk away from wives, children, friends, parents, siblings; risking career and reputation. For what? Another woman.
In the Middle East, young men and teenage boys willingly become human bombs, causing endless grief to thousands. For what? The promise of seventy-two beautiful virgins in paradise.
Female attraction can be deadly. But death was not our Designer’s intention. Feminine power was intended to give life. Eve (whose name means Life giver), was designed to complete her Adam, to nurture life in him and to create new life in children.
Many wives do not understand how profound this power is. God has blessed you with a feminine ability that you can use for good in your husband’s life. God has plans for your man. He wants to use you to grow him into a godly man. Your power can meet his loneliness and his companionship needs, affirm his sexual identity, protect him from temptation, and keep him for life.
Meet His Companionship Need
Something is missing in every man. And it’s by divine design. After God created Adam, He said, “It is not good for the man to be alone” (Gen 2:18). It’s an amazing truth that the perfect God of the universe created a perfect human being and then declared, “It is not good.” Man was incomplete in the sense that he was lonely. God orchestrated the perfect arrangement for His grand finale of creation: a woman, the “helper suitable for him.” It is still true since “in the beginning” in Genesis, a wife makes a man complete and whole.
Your husband has this same “loneliness” need.
God brought you into his life to be his “helper” to meet his need for a companion. In Christian marriage, this oneness is a unity of mind, body, and soul, and is celebrated through the sexual union.
Lest we women feel somehow superior that we are not needy. We are! We are incomplete without our husbands. We need our husbands to help us become who God designed us to be. Neither the man nor the woman can stand alone; as mentioned above, God’s Word makes it very clear “it is not good that man should be alone.” Women must think as God instructs them to in the Bible about their men, themselves and their marriages.
Of course, now after the fall of mankind, no one is totally complete without the indwelling presence of Jesus Christ. Moreover, perfect completeness cannot occur on earth, we will only attain this in Heaven. But in marriage we can touch the holiness of God; we can recapture a taste of what was lost in the Garden of Eden when a husband and a wife express love, transparency, trust, and sacrifice in the mystery of marital intercourse.
Bless His Sexuality
When God made a man to be attracted to a woman, He had multiple purposes in mind. Adam’s loneliness need was not just for a companion. He needed Eve for the joy of finding pleasure in her total person; body, soul, and spirit and for the affirmation and blessing of his identity as a man that come through her love for him. Gen 2:25 says, “. . . and the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed.” As a result, every wife has a deep, life-altering responsibility to her husband to be a helper, and help him feel like the man God created him to be. If I love my husband, I won’t view his sexual needs disapprovingly. Since all men are created with a loneliness need, they journey from boyhood into manhood needing to know that their manliness is good and positive. Humanly speaking, this is a question that only his wife should answer a blessing only she should give.
Protect Your Husband from Temptation
You have the power to protect your husband from temptation by making sure his sexual needs are met by you and you alone. Look at it this way: “If you don’t want to do his laundry, your husband can take his clothes to the cleaners. If you decide you don’t want to cook anymore for him, he can go out to any number of great restaurants to eat. But if your husband isn’t getting his sexual needs met at home with you, and he goes somewhere else, God calls that a sin.” Don’t misunderstand what I’m saying. If your husband sins in this way, he’s responsible before God. But at the same time, understand that you play a powerful role in helping him not to yield to temptation. God created us as men and women with overwhelmingly inbuilt differences. If you love him, you’ll want to protect him from the limitless temptations that the enemy of his soul floats by him day after day. You are most powerful as a wife when you become a student of what your husband likes and then use that knowledge and your feminine skill to protect him from temptation and sin.
Keep Him for Life
When we stated our vows at the wedding altar, most of us repeated the words “to have and to hold” and “till death do us part.” We signed up for life. But have you ever thought about what it means to “have” and “hold” your husband?
To have implies a possession. It means he belongs to you and no one else. He is your responsibility, and you are his. Are you fulfilling your sexual responsibility? For frequency? Creativity? Have you turned him down more often than you have invited his love? Do you put his needs before or after those of your children or your work?
To hold means to keep or bond, much like a magnet. A magnet has the power within to pull another polar opposite to itself. My husband and I are virtual opposites in nearly every way. It’s what attracted us to each other in the first place. But I must continue to be a magnet in his life if I am to keep him. Too many women would love to have him if I let him leave home for work or travel constantly in a state of sexual deprivation. 1Cor 7:5 (NKJV) tells us, “Do not deprive one another except with consent for a time, that you may give yourselves to . . . prayer; and come together again so that Satan does not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.”
This may come as no surprise to you, but most men want—really want—their wives to passionately desire them. And when you express sexual longing for him—whether verbally or nonverbally—your husband is unlikely to refuse your magnetic power. The more a wife affirms her husband’s God-given manhood, the more she helps build him into the man God wants him to be. This power of a wife to affirm him, bless him, protect him, and keep him is blessed by God. It is a very good, nurturing, life-giving gift. Knowing this, I’ve often wondered why we women don’t want or choose to use our God-given powers to affirm and nurture our husbands more often.
This power you and I have as wives is blessed by God. It is a very good, life-giving thing. The question remains: What will you do about this power you possess? Are you going to put it to death, bury it, deny it, or will you choose to exercise your sexual power to create a soul-satisfying confidence in your man?
May the Lord give you the wisdom and understanding to use your feminine power positively to the glory of God. Amen.
- Biblical Women in God’s Design for Mankind. (covenantfamilyaffairs.wordpress.com)
- Christian Couples- Unity of Place of Worship (covenantfamilyaffairs.wordpress.com)
- Husbands and Wives (jemtree.wordpress.com)