If you were really honest right now, where do you need to keep loving? Who do you need to keep loving?
Fathers, guard well what has been given to you.
It is not your job to simply bring home the bacon.
It is not your job to simply make sure the lawn is mowed.
They don’t need your wallet, even though they will some day ask for it.
Security is important, but it is not everything.
What they need is different.
What they need can’t be purchased.
What they need is set apart.
What they need is you.
All of you.
The part that may be locked deep inside of you.
It is time to reach in and let it come out.
They need to see the real you.
Imperfections and all.
They need you.
They need to know you love them.
They need to see that you love them.
No matter what.
Even when they are bad.
That you will always love them.
That you love them so much that you will show them a different way.
Through your gentleness and respect.
Through your consistency.
By being authentic.
By being all there.
By showing them the example that you’ve been called to show.
Even when it hurts.
And even when you don’t know how.
This is your job.
When the world tells you it is about buying their heart.
You will win it by a different method.
You will win them over with love.
And they will change the world because of you someday.
Now go live it.
Dads, what is the single greatest challenge you face as a father? Those that are not dads, what is something you’ve picked up about fatherhood that may help the rest of us?
We get frustrated with other people when they won’t change. The reality is that other people won’t change until they are ready to change. Sometimes life has to run its course in them and around them before they are ready. No amount of pulling, pushing, persuading, arguing can change someone. True change has to come from within. Otherwise, it is simply an act of external modification that will not last.
Frustrated that you can’t change someone? It might be time to focus your limited energy on something you can control, like your attitude, mindset about the situation or your prayers for that person!
Why is this a difficult concept for most of us? Love to hear your thoughts!
Everyone wants to have an awesome family. Few are willing to do what it takes. Don’t believe me? Look around. Families everywhere are falling apart. Some survive. Families we were made to more than just survive. They were created to thrive! The reality is that a thriving family doesn’t just happen by accident. It takes hard work, a lot of self-sacrifice and a great deal of intentionality. Here are 6 Keys To Developing An Awesome Family:
Self awareness- The family that helps one another become more self-aware is the family that helps one another have greater impact outside the doors of the home. By self-aware, I mean that each person knows who they are, and how they are impacting those around them. For example, the self-aware child learns how to respect their parents or siblings or the self-aware husband knows the impact their words are having on others in the home. A lot of families try to “protect” one another, but are not helping each other become more and more self aware. Families striving for self awareness “call it like it is” and help each other realize one another’s blind spots as well as strong points.
Unconditional love- This is the foundation for a healthy family. Unconditional love says, “My love for you is not tied to your performance or any other external circumstance. It is not conditional based on what you do.” This type of love creates an atmosphere of trust in the home. It allows others to know that the family is a safe place even when the rest of the world dishes out conditional love (I only accept you if you perform well, look good or love me back in return). An atmosphere of unconditional love creates an environment for emotional and relational development that will put each individual in a place where they can grow and succeed in life. It gives permission to take risks, knowing that failure can and probably will happen at some point, but that failure is ok. Want an awesome family? Fill it with unconditional love.
Family Vision & Values- Most families don’t have a defined vision or set of values. Honestly, they take a lot of work to create. The result is usually an unclear direction and even conflict down the road. The family with a vision is able to go places as one and have greater impact in life. Much like a laser, when every individual is moving in the same direction, the concentrated energy can have significant impact! This family is able to make decisions based not upon convenience, but rather upon a set of values that everyone holds as important. For example, in my family, when time demanding things come up that fall outside of our vision and values, we can simply say, “No thank you.” We have already thought through what is most important to us, so it is easy to say no to the less important things.
Intentional Time- We plan to spend time together each day as a family. It doesn’t always work out, but most days we are spending some sort of intentional time as a family. We usually make and eat breakfast together and usually dinner as well. No phones or TV during this time, just conversation. We will typically read a story to the girls or something from YouVersion.com. We always talk about what is going on in and around us. Quality time leads to quality communication, which leads to trusting relationships. Without intentional time, you will not have the environment necessary for healthy relationships to develop.
Fun Traditions- Our family likes to have fun. A lot of fun. Over the years, we’ve started several family traditions that we look forward to and call our own. Some are simple and silly, others are more meaningful. For example, we take a week vacation every fall to the beach or some place warm. We look forward to this time each year and it gives us something to talk about, plan for and remember. Traditions are a great way to bring your family together and have fun with one another! They are a way to give your family an identity of its own- something to be proud of.
Spiritual development- Spiritual development points outside of the family to draw upon strength that it otherwise would not have alone. Without a spiritual element in a family, it is like an unanchored ship on a stormy sea. When the storms come, and they will, the family without a spiritual foundation will be much more likely to fall apart. Faith will anchor your family down and at the same time release it to reach places it would never reach on its own. When your kids leave the home, they will have be able to own their own faith and achieve more in life than they ever could without faith.
These 6 Keys are just a few I came up with. Which ones are the most difficult for you and why? What other elements lead to having an Awesome Family? Love to hear your thoughts in the comments!
Re-post: We all know that marriages around the world are on the rocks and ending every day. The casualties are high. When the dust settles, scars take a long time to heal. Some never do.
Are you next? Hopefully not, but perhaps you should make some decisions today to keep from becoming the next statistic. Who knows, maybe you’ll decide to not just save your marriage, but take steps to make it vibrant and life-giving. Are you ready to lay down all your chips to make things healthy or are you still on the fence? Make the choice to be “all in” today.
Here are 70 Ways to Save Your Marriage Before it’s Too Late:
1. Stop looking to your spouse to complete you.
2. Get ready to step up your game; you’re going to have to fight for it.
3. Don’t treat your spouse like your mother or maid.
4. Know marriage is a daily sacrifice, not a fairy tale.
5. Know marriage can be a blast!
6. Pray together.
7. Pray for your spouse; ask them what they need.
8. Ask for prayer from someone else.
9. Believe when you pray.
10. Don’t just pray, do something.
11. Don’t give up.
12. Get help.
13. Don’t just do it for your kids, do it for your spouse.
14. Don’t leave your underwear on the floor.
15. Don’t leave the dishes in the sink.
16. Do the little things to show your spouse you care about them.
17. Honor your spouse with your words.
18. Honor your spouse with your actions.
19. Commit to going on a monthly date.
20. Commit to going on a yearly vacation.
21. Write a note or a letter explaining your feelings.
22. Pray about it before you give the note to your spouse.
23. Work on your marriage; it will not save itself.
24. Get out of debt; this will multiply your problems.
25. Learn to live below your means.
26. Talk about how you spend your money.
27. Ask yourself if your priorities in life are straight.
28. Change your priorities if they are out of whack.
29. Don’t fantasize about other people.
30. Don’t talk about intimate things with the wrong people.
31. Stop being stubborn; you can change!
32. Admit when your wrong.
33. When you are right, admit you are wrong.
34. Quit trying to be right all the time.
35. If happiness is your god, this list is not going to help you.
36. If your opinions are your own god, this list will not help you.
37. If you are unwilling to change, this list will not help you.
38. Put your spouse before your kids, unless you want to be strangers on graduation day.
39. Quit acting like you have it all together.
40. Be real with someone you can trust about where you are in your marriage.
41. Surround yourself with the right people.
42. Your friend that has never been married may or may not be the right person.
43. Look up to those who have life experience and ask them for help.
44. Husbands, take the lead spiritually. Quit waiting on you wife to lead.
45. Let go of the past and forgive each other.
46. Set three goals this month for your marriage.
47. Make the goals specific and measurable.
48. Create a few action steps for each goal.
49. Quit believing things will get better on their own.
50. Know you are going to have to fight for it.
51. Sacrifice something you love for someone you love more.
52. Make your spouse number Two and your kids number Three.
53. Make God number One.
54. Talk to one another daily and often.
55. Learn to really hear your spouse, not just listen. There is a difference.
56. Honor your spouse always.
57. Build trust where trust is broken, be vulnerable.
58. Trust starts with making and keeping small commitments.
59. Be physically intimate often.
60. Be emotionally intimate first.
61. Check your life priorities and change them if needed.
62. Keep your small commitments.
63. Remember the important things.
64. Celebrate small victories.
65. Don’t give up.
66. Get free from addiction.
67. See how kind you can be to one another.
68. Don’t just read this list, doing something!
69. Pick 5 things you can do this week and do them!
70. Ok, I can’t think of any more, but I think you should have enough things to work on…
What other tips do you have? Do you disagree with anything I’ve listed? Love to hear your thoughts in the comments below…
Welcome to TheWayItCouldBe.com, a site promoting cultural impact through personal and spiritual transformation. Post topics include creativity, family, faith, culture, social media and leadership. Feel free to browse around by category. If you dig the site, you can subscribe for free email updates by simply entering your email address in the sidebar out to the right. Thanks for visiting – Chad
Face it, you, if you are married, (and I) have and will always have an imperfect marriage. It will never be without blunder. Wow, doesn’t that take the pressure off?? Now that we’ve agreed on that truth, let’s talk about 3 Common Marriage Mess-ups and then discuss what you can do with each mess up to have an awesome marriage!
Marriage Mess Up #1- We all have shortcomings. You are imperfect, just like everyone else. Therefore, your marriage will never be perfect. Embrace this early on and you will learn how to thrive in your state of imperfection! Ignore this truth and you will set yourself up for
disappointment at some point down the road.
What to do about it. Openness and honesty- counterbalance your imperfections by being humble, open and honest. Admit when you have wronged one another and seek forgiveness. You probably already know this and are likely tempted to read over this one, but I’d like to encourage you to stop and think about it. Do you really admit when you’ve made a mistake? Have you truly asked for forgiveness?
Marriage Mess Up #2- Misunderstanding. One or more of you likely isn’t a great listener by nature. And one or more of you may have a tough time opening us and communicating needs and desires to the other. Both of these realities, combined with the vast differences between men and women, can set the stage for a sea of misunderstanding in your marriage. Assumptions go unchecked and hurts can build up over time.
What to do about it. Patience and thoughtful words. And becoming a great listener. This one will not be easy. This one is going to take a lot of hard work. You’ve got to learn how to listen. You’ve got to get good at it. Marriage requires putting your agenda aside and serving your spouse by listening. It calls for a constant renewing of the mind, so that your words are thoughtful, intentional and kind. You can do this! Learn to be a great listener, to be patient and to use thoughtful words.
Marriage Mess Up #3- Everyday-ness. Marriage is special. Your spouse is unique. Then comes life. Life lulls you into sleep. It makes the special things seem normal. Everyday-ness happens to your marriage. You take things for granted. Life happens. You look up and your marriage can be….blah. This happens.
What to do about it. Creating special moments. I’m not saying marriage is always a honeymoon or a fairytale or Christmas morning 365 days a year. Nonetheless, it is special! So….make it special. Create special moments, family traditions. Honor your spouse with little things and big things. Serve someone outside of your family and remind yourselves of this: life is not all about what happens inside the walls of your home, but more often what happens when you step off your front porch. Make your marriage special, because it is special!
What other common marriage mess-ups do you see and what can we do about it? Which of these do you relate with and what can you do today about it?
Lust says, “I need.” Love says, “I will.”
Lust is deceptive and misleading. Love is open and trust-building.
Lust wants what it can’t or shouldn’t have. Love values giving over receiving.
Lust craves what it does not possess. Love respects that which has been entrusted.
Lust never satisfies, leading to death in the end. Love never quits, leading to life.
Lust ultimately centers itself in pride. Love is centered in selflessness.
Lust builds wounds and scars that take a lifetime to heal. Love builds strength and life, often healing the scars of others.
Lust implies perfection. Love rests in imperfection.
Lust has no room for mercy. Love makes room for forgiveness.
Why do we often get love mixed up with lust?? Love to hear your comments.
TheWayItCouldBe.com is a site promoting cultural impact through personal and spiritual transformation. Post topics include creativity, family, faith, culture, social media and leadership. Feel free to browse around by category. If you dig the site, you can subscribe for free email updates by simply entering your email address in the sidebar out to the right. – Chad
So trust is pretty important in marriage. Some of you that are married have a decent amount of trust in your relationship. How great would it be to raise that level of trust and grow even closer in your marriage? Others of you may have little trust. How would you like to move towards restoring what is broken?
Regardless of where you are in your marriage, you can always grow in the area of trust. Trust is a vital ingredient for any healthy marriage relationship! If you are intentional about building a solid foundation of trust in your marriage, you can build a family that will impact generations to come!
Here are 5 Smart Ways to Build Trust in Your Marriage:
1. Do what you say you will do.
Pretty simple. Say you are going to be home by 6pm? Be home by 6pm! If you can hold appointments elsewhere, you should be able to hold them with the ones you care about the most. Communicate your plans and try your best to stick to them. Trust is lost when you fail to follow through I’m action hat you have committed to in word. Choose the higher road and do what you say you will do.
2. Be consistent.
Time builds trust. Consistency over time builds even more trust. If your spouse is talking with you, be consistent in the way you engage and listen. If you have messed up recently in your marriage, as many have, it is going to take time to rebuild that trust. Be patient. Time and consistency. Be consistent.
3. Put your spouse’s interest before your own.
When marriages begin to go downhill, 9 times out of 10, one or both spouses begin to put their own interest before that of their spouses. ME mentality. This selfish mindset erodes trust faster than a wild hurricane on a sandy beach. When you SHOW your spouse you care about their needs more than your own, you will earn their trust over time. And when they begin to put your interests first, guess what happens? Both of your needs are met!
4. Don’t be stupid.
Seriously, don’t be stupid. Don’t do things that you wouldn’t do if your spouse was right next to you. Don’t say things you wouldn’t say if your spouse wasn’t right next to you. Don’t look at things you wouldn’t look at with your spouse right next to you. Don’t. Be. Stupid. Don’t be stupid!
5. Get past the past.
Forgive your spouse. If you’ve been married long, there is a 99.999% chance that one or both of you have played the “stupid” card a time or two. As a result, hurts happen and are tough to heal from and leave behind. If there is anything you are still holding against your spouse, let it go. Your forgiveness for them may eventually lead them to forgive you for when you have played the “stupid” card. Ultimately, you will not be able to control what their response will be, but you must take responsibility to forgive them first. Trust is impossible without forgiveness, because none of us are without fault. Forgive. Get past the past.
Which of these areas resonates with you the most in your marriage and why? What are other ways to build trust in a marriage? Love to hear your thoughts!
I’ve got man friends (we don’t play rugby). Not anything inappropriate, just man friends. Some people just call them friends. This morning we had breakfast together. We talked about being dads, the Texas Rangers going to the World Series and about funny things kids do. We talked about dreams and aspirations. Nothing crazy- just coffee, conversation and friendship.
Guys, do you have man friends? Ladies, do the guys in your life have man friends? Is this important? Why or why not? Love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!
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All around us worlds colliding. Love once gloriously wonderful torn apart.
Hearts breaking. Children numb. Waiting 20 years to cry.
Husbands are settling. Wives are talking.
Christian marriages are hardly different than the masses. Hope is lost.
Not in My House. Not on my watch. I’m Fighting for you. I’m not settling.
We’re not settling. Not us.
Perfection I don’t know. Only forgiveness, both forgiving and being forgiven.
Persevering I do know. Healing I know as well.
I have to fight. I have to set boundaries. I have to be honest even when it hurts.
I will, even when it hurts a little.
I have to cherish, to remember, to honor and to lead. I will not be passive, ignorant or arrogant. I will lead humbly.
I will not overspend, overwork or overindulge.
I will learn self control.
I will be here. I will be here for you. I will be here for them. I will be here for Him. I will be here so the world can have hope. The way it could be is….different. And it is real.
Question: Why do we settle in our marriages?? What is one tip you’ve picked up over the years? Please share with our readers in the comments below!
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