Thursday, February 25, 2010

Emotional Lockdown

Hey ladies. Quick post. 

I receive a daily word called "The Word For Today". It comes straight to my email. It has shocked me because just like church, it seems to say what I need to hear every day. You can subscribe to it HERE.

Here is a sample from today's post. 

Have you ever heard of the 'Jericho syndrome'? It's when you're on emotional lockdown. You're afraid to reach out or let anybody in. You've built a wall so you can't be hurt again. Look out, because that wall can imprison you, and everybody else in your life. 'Love is patient... it keeps no record of wrongs... Love never fails...' (1 Corinthians 13:4-8 NIV). Forgiving, when you've been deeply hurt, is one of the hardest things you'll ever do, but you must forgive, and keep on forgiving until resentment no longer controls you. '...Peter came to Him and said, "Lord, how often shall... I forgive him? Up to seven times?" Jesus said..."not... up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven"' (Matthew 18:21-22 NKJV). Stop rehearsing your past and give it to the Lord. He's the wall-toppling, communication-restoring, esteem-building healer of broken hearts and relationships. If you let Him, He will help you to live and love again.

Aimee Freeman

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Have You Ever Felt Like.....

Hello ladies. So last night I posted on Twitter & on Facebook a sermon for you all to watch. I mentioned that I would be posting about it here today. If you missed that information, you can watch the sermon at Elevation Church. It is about 50 minutes, but I highly recommend it.

Which brings me to my question....have you ever felt like you heard something that seemed so small, but was so powerful that it could change so much in your marriage? I have. This summer when I first listened to the CD that came with my "Motivating Your Man God's Way" series, I knew that my marriage could be transformed. That one hour changed so much inside of me & then inside of my husband.

Well, it happened again last night....twice. Once when I was listening to this sermon & once when I went to Bible study. First, lets talk about Bible study. I have never been to a women's Bible study before. Adam & I went to a group study for a few weeks when we moved here but this was different. I had the pleasure of meeting 5 new women that love the Lord! I do not believe in accidents & I know in my heart that God has a reason for everything. A friend invited me to this study last night & I decided to go at the last minute. We went around the table taking turns reading scripture from Ephesians 5. Being new, I was holding back a bit & I didn't read until everyone else went. Believe it or not, my passages were Ephesians 5:22-33. This in itself took me back a little.

22Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord. 23For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. 24Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.
 25Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her26to make her holy, cleansing[b] her by the washing with water through the word, 27and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. 28In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29After all, no one ever hated his own body, but he feeds and cares for it, just as Christ does the church— 30for we are members of his body. 31"For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh."[c] 32This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. 33However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.

This is the stuff that I have been telling you guys & learning myself. Interesting. God is trying to tell me something. One of the ladies said something during our reading that really stuck with me & I can't stop thinking about. She said that we are on a WALK with the Lord. We can't expect to change all in one day. This is a process & it takes time. She also said that the enemy will speak to us & convince us that things will never change & they will be this way forever. This could be when thinking of yourself & the changes that you need to make, or changes that you want your spouse to make. Things WON'T always be this way. God can do anything in anyone. He can change anything. Don't let the enemy trick you. You may just be being tested, don't fail!

Six months ago I realized several things that needed to be changed within myself. I have discussed most of them here on this blog & I have been doing my best to change all of them. Some happened over night & were pretty easy & some are going to take time & practice. That doesn't mean that I am not trying to change them every day, some changes are just bigger & require more prayer & grace. Of course our husbands wish that we could change everything 100% overnight & we wish the same about them. God is always working on us on our WALK with Him. We are made in His image & we should love & respect our husbands (& they should love us) unconditionally, as God loves us. 

I realize that this is easier said than done. We all have days where we want to give up & trust the enemy instead of the Lord. It is easier that way. It is much harder to surround yourself in Scripture, Bible study, Christian people, Church, & positivity when you feel as though your spouse is against you. We have both been there, we get it. It is much easier to believe the bad in a person than the good. I am very guilty of this. It is hard when you are hurting to want to continue in that hurt for the possibility of things getting better when you could just choose any of 100 sins to feel better right now. 

Marriage is made in CHRIST & you can't take CHRIST out of it. The Lord wants your marriage to work, that is without question. Matthew 19:6 says, "What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate." This means you! You can't play God. By taking God out of the equation & choosing to do what YOU want to do, you are doing just that. How do you expect this marriage, your next marriage, or the one after that to work if you have already decided that you can play by your own set of rules whenever you so choose?

Ok, so you are going to make it work. Now what? Well, that is where the sermon that I posted comes in. Here it is again so that you don't have to scroll all the way to the top. Elevation Church No excuses, ladies. I told you that I would tell you something that I learned in the sermon that was powerful to me & I felt like it could change a lot in my own marriage. I have to admit that sometimes when I "learn" something, I feel so stupid. It hits me so hard & it is so obvious that I am like, "Geez. Why didn't I ever look at it that way before?" I guess this goes back to my WALK with God though. He can't reveal every little thing to me on one day or I would go into overload. 

Pastor Furtick's wife, Holly, came on stage & shared a little bit about her marriage. Maybe it just took me hearing it from a woman but she explained something to me in a different way than anyone, including Adam, has ever been able to do for me. When I am upset or hurt, I show my emotions by crying. (So does Holly) I can do that pretty well & sometimes uncontrollably. I don't want to be crying, but I can't stop. Adam shows his hurt through anger. (So does Pastor Furtick) Does he really WANT to be angry with me? No, of course not. But just maybe, he can't help it either. There is my duh moment #1. If I am crying & Adam keeps yelling at me that is just going to make me more upset. Well, why am I not considering that about Adam? When he is showing me anger, I am just getting more upset & I am not "listening" to the fact that he is "crying" too. I even sometimes get angry, that he is angry, thinking that he is a jerk. Like how dare Adam get mad at me when I am crying. But, he is crying too, in his own way! What if I was crying & Adam started crying too as a way to show me that I am being a jerk? That would hurt. Duh moment #2. 

As you can imagine whenever you discover something negative about yourself, you feel terrible. Hopefully. You repent, ask your spouse for forgiveness, & make a change without wasting another second. Make no excuses or allowances to behave that way in the future. So was God speaking through Holly? Was it because she was a woman saying this & not my husband? Was it because they are so "Holy" in my mind? Was it my time in my WALK to hear this? Why did I not hear this sooner? It certainly wasn't because I wanted to keep making Adam feel bad.  One thing that I know for sure & what I keep reminding myself is that God won't come early, but He will never be too late. So we should be glad that we are blessed with information that will change us when it DOES come. He tells us when we need to hear it the most. Remember, we don't change everything at once. It is a process of baby steps. 

The video sermon goes into even more detail than I am covering here. I realize that it is probably taking an hour out of your day to read this already. LOL But, I want to give you a few more tips that I jotted down on my paper that I have been horribly guilty of in the past. These aren't easy things to do, but they are necessary & most importantly, they are how the Lord wants you to respond. 

1. Don't yell at him, sick God on him. We can't change our husbands & they can't change us. They can tell us what bugs them or what they would like changed, which of course would require decent communication, but we can't change each other. Only God can change us. Therefore, if you feel like you have to have a more active part in his changing, pray for him. Pray that God will change this behavior & that he will show your husband that it hurts you. Holly said that often, Pastor Steven would apologize hours or even days later that he hurt her. Probably because the Lord worked on him. If you are in God's way, he can't work in your husband. Plus, taking this role will prevent the conversation from going down other roads that will lead to more destruction. Every bad argument goes to places that have nothing to do with the issue at hand. Now there is more damage to repair. Like I spoke about earlier, this is VERY hard to do & will require prayer for yourself for strength, wisdom, & discernment. It is much easier to sin, yell back, & disrespect your husband. This is probably one of my greatest flaws. 

It was funny to me that they chose another way to describe a situation. They said that if your spouse locks you out of their life or a situation, don't kick down the door, but leave myrrh on the lock. A few weeks ago, Adam & I got into a fight. Adam, trying to be honorable & not argue back with me & locked himself in the bedroom. I took this personal & didn't not see him "crying" as I mentioned earlier. He just needed space away from me & to not make matter worse. I acted poorly & banged on the door for several minutes & then even kicked the door, twice I think. At that moment God convicted me & I realized that I was not helping the situation, but making it worse. I knew that I was being disrespectful. However, an apology would not have seemed sincere at the time. I wanted to "fix" things because I realized that it got out of control. So once Adam felt safe enough to come out, I wanted to "talk" again. All I should have done was sprinkle a little myrrh on the lock, prayed to the Lord, & left it alone. He would have taken care of this. Adam was still hurt even though I passed my peak of pain. Knowing that he doesn't like conflict, I should have realized that an easy truce could have been made without a word. 

2. Make it right before the sun goes down. Our husbands are called to be our spiritual leaders. Pastor Furtick prays with his wife every night before bed. Not always a long prayer, sometimes it is actually very short. However, it is very hard to remain upset with someone if you are holding their hand praying for them & with them. You being mad at them isn't going to change them anyway. God is working on that. This is not to say that the issue has to be 100% cleared up, but you just don't go to bed angry with each other. Remember, your spouse is a good willed person, one that you love, your husband would kill to protect you & his family. Try to remember that even though he is mad, he might just need his space, he might just be "crying" too. If he lets Him, the Lord will heal your husband, protect your marriage, & make you stronger together than ever. 

In the heat of the moment we don't always see what is right. We take what makes us feel better right then & there which is usually the wrong move. We compound our sin by adding additional sins. We let the enemy poison our minds to think that things will always be hard. We need to pray not only for ourselves daily to make the right choices, but also for our husbands. After everything that we went through with Kayleigh, I have so much confidence in the power of prayer. I know without a doubt that God can make anything happen regardless of how far away it seems right now. Hang on to that. He WANTS your marriage to work. It was HIS creation. He COMMANDS you to stick through it. Sprinkle a little myrrh on the lock, pray for your husband like crazy, (& yourself) get out of God's way, & let Him work. It will be the hardest thing that you have ever done, but isn't your husband worth it? 

Aimee Freeman

Monday, February 22, 2010

Cross Point Church - Nashville TN

Hey ladies. A couple of months ago I was doing some research & I came across Cross Point Church. We watched a few of their videos & I watched a sermon or two. I began following the Pastor on Twitter & I was really drawn to what they were doing as a church. You can check out their link at Cross Point Church

About a week ago, a loyal blog follower told me that there is another Pastor there, Justin Davis, that has a marriage blog with his wife. It appears that the Pastor cheated on his wife in the past. They now have a ministry to help other marriages survive infidelity as well as the other many issues that arise in a marriage. Their blog is a very easy read & one that I hope you can find helpful. Check it out at Refine Us.

I have to say that I have missed posting tremendously this week. Having this marriage ministry has brought a genuine joy into my life that I have never been able to find in a job outside of the home. Reading your success stories has been nothing short of amazing to both of us. I have thoroughly enjoyed being your support system, your friend, & your confidant. God has given us an enormous blessing in being able to help so many of you. The Lord has many things going on in our lives right now, but I am going to try my very hardest to post or share other helpful information every chance I get.

I also want to mention that our church, Lifepoint, is doing a series on love & relationships. You can check out the sermons at Lifepoint Church. Elevation did a series last year that was very similar & you can find that at Elevation Church. Both of these unbelievable Pastors will keep you on track! If your church has had a marriage series that you found helpful, please post a link in the comments or email me directly. I would be happy to post all of the links for you all to dive into. I love watching sermons online from other churches.

I hope that you all enjoyed your weekend & you have a wonderful week ahead.
Aimee Freeman

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Focus On The Family

Hey everyone. I stumbled up something today that I want to share with all of you. I am sure that many of you have heard of Focus on the Family before. Apparently, you can give them a call & they will let you speak with a counselor FREE of charge! How awesome is that?

I don't know any details about the extent of their help, but I wanted to be sure that you all knew about this. When we face turmoil in our lives sometimes we are embarrassed or ashamed to turn to people that know us, our spouse, our family, our friends, etc. I feel that this is a good resource & service where you can talk to a person that can listen to you & won't have any predetermined ideas about you or your situation.

It appears from their website that they cover many topics, including, marriage, separation, divorce, strengthening your marriage, parenting, addiction, infidelity, sex, abuse, financial challenges, etc. There is a long list. We can all use a little help sometime & this service is FREE. Check it out & let me know what you think.

Phone - 1-800-A-FAMILY (232-6459)

Aimee Freeman

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Leave Of Absence

Hello Ladies. I hope that you have all had an amazing Valentine's Day. It is my hope that the 14 day challenge has helped to make all of your marriages stronger. 

I am sad to say that I will be taking an indefinite personal leave of absence from this ministry blog. The Lord is calling my focus to be somewhere else right now. This was an extremely difficult decision for me & some time in the future I'll be able to come back here & explain things. I appreciate your prayers for wisdom & discernment.

I do not want to leave you all without any marriage resources so here are a few websites that have helped me tremendously. Both websites have marriage Mondays so be sure to check them out today.

There are some fantastic videos posted here that are sure to help you in your journey as a wife, mother, & Christian. I have posted one video & there are several others.

If you are not already doing so, you can follow me on Twitter or Facebook & you will be alerted when I post again. I may from time to time post articles or information from other sources as well.

Aimee Freeman

Saturday, February 13, 2010

The Respect Test - Repost

Day 14 - Repost

Good afternoon ladies. I am feeling as though there are a lot of smiling hubbies out in the world today. Maybe not all of them, but more than usual. Am I right? I have enjoyed reading all of the comments & emails on the successes that many of you had last night. Keep them coming. I was fortunate enough to meet a new friend & blog follower for coffee this morning. She is a day behind, so she just read challenge #13 this morning. She decided not to wait until tonight to move forward. She went into the bedroom & took action! Go her!

Think about how your husband's day might be different today than it normally would be. Not only does your "new" behavior affect you & your marriage, but his co-workers might be positively affected, his boss, his employees, fellow drivers on the road (no road rage today), & everyone that he comes in contact with. I am so proud of all of you for embracing what could have been one of the most difficult challenges. Praise God!

Over the past week or two I have been compiling great quotes from friends on Facebook or Twitter whenever I come across one. I would also like to invite you to email me over a quote that may have been powerful in your life. I will be sharing them over time as they are appropriate to the message. There are some REALLY good ones so far. Since today is our last challenge for this series I want to share one that grabbed me the other day. While many of you have succeed each day & made drastic improvements in your marriages, there have been many women coming up with every & any excuse to fail.

"Quit making excuses for the way you are & let God transform you into the person He created you to be!!" - Thank you Larry Brey for your amazing words. Your Twitter posts often stop me in my tracks!

Doesn't that make you think? What are you making excuses for? Not just in your marriage, but in your personal life. Often what runs us down personally interferes in our marriages. What can you change today that will give you the courage to work on your marriage a little harder than you were before?

We seem to think that we can work on our marriages only when we want to, or in my case, when it fell apart. Unfortunately, there is so much more damage to be undone by looking at things from this perspective. It needs to be a priority, a requirement, to work on your marriage EVERY SINGLE DAY. You have to make a decision that you marriage is important to you. Remember, feelings follow choices? Most of you don't have the luxury of only going to work when you feel like it. Right? If you behaved that way you would most likely lose your job, right? Well, making a conscious decision to NOT work on your marriage can cause you to lose your spouse. I am sure that most of you can agree that it is easier to find another job (even in this economy), than finding another suitable husband. Why is it then, that we give our jobs more attention than we give our husbands?

I am extremely proud of all of you for taking this 14 day challenge. I can't praise you enough. Based on the poll question on the left sidebar, it looks like 96% of you have found this information helpful in your marriages. That is amazing! Adam & I are so excited for what is to come for each & every one of you. My biggest fear is that you will feel that tonight is the end, the last day. My prayer is that you will look at today as the beginning of a journey that will strengthen your marriage in a way that you never thought possible, but have always dreamed of.

Today's lesson is the lesson that changed everything in my marriage. It is the day that spoke to Adam in a way that I had not been speaking to him before. It was not a miracle pill that caused him to come home the next day, but it opened a door. I did this challenge at a time when I didn't like 90% of what Adam was doing. He had moved 3 1/2 hours away & was creating a life that clearly didn't include us. However, when I sat & thought about it, I came up with about 15 things that I appreciated about him. Things that I respected, regardless of his behavior at that exact moment.

Lesson #14

Say to him, "I was thinking today about all of the things about you that I respect, & I want you to know that I really respect you." Exit the room. When he asks, if he asks, be prepared to give him at least three things.

Note - Since Adam was not "home" with me, my options were over the phone, text, or email. Telling him on the phone didn't seem workable to me, email could take days, so I figured that a text was as close to the challenge as I could get. I sent him a text asking if he was busy. He told me that he wasn't & he asked what was up. I did the challenge. It worked exactly as Dr. Eggerichs said that it would. Adam wanted to know what I respected about him, especially since I seemed to disagree with everything that he was doing at the time. (his words) I text him, yes I text, 15 things. It took a while, LOL. He thanked me for saying those things but he let me know that it hurt him that it took me until he left me for me to acknowledge them. It hurt me too. Why did I let it happen this way?

Here I had this list of 15 things, but I wasn't really showing him that I meant or even noticed any of them. What a wake up call that was. I made that list in about 10 minutes. I felt at that moment that I had taken advantage of my husband. I took him for granted, assuming that he would always be there. Of course, this was not intentional, but that didn't matter. Ignorance is not bliss. Much damage had been done. Ladies PLEASE, don't let this happen to your marriage. Don't lose a man that you love & respect simply because you aren't showing him what he means to you. You might be thinking that he is taking advantage of you as well, & you might be right. Remember, this is about changing YOU.

Tonight I am begging for a favor. I have asked before but tonight I will resort to begging. Please send in your comments & testimonials. Let us know how this whole process has made a positive impact in your marriage, tell us about the success of a single challenge, or tell us which day you resisted the most & how it went past your expectations. I will be sharing your stories over the next few days. (I will leave out names, of course) Let's give back & get some of these other wives excited that are on the fence about if this can REALLY help them. Let's encourage other wives to try a little harder. Let's show them that this CAN work. It certainly can't hurt. Right?

"Lord, please give us the encouragement to complete tonight's challenge with sincerity. Please soften our husband's hearts & open their eyes to the work that we have been doing for 2 weeks. Please speak through us & help us to chose the correct words. We can't do this without you Lord, we need your help. Please hold our hands as we begin our journey into the rest of our lives. May our marriages be as great as you intended. Thank you Father for my husband. I am blessed that you chose him for me. Amen!"
Aimee Freeman

Friday, February 12, 2010

Tonight He WILL Notice - Repost

Day Thirteen - Repost

I hope that I got all of you excited for what we are about to discuss. Today we are going to get VERY personal. Fortunately for all of you, you can keep your business private. I am going to share just enough to help you to understand the man's mind without getting too behind the scenes. LOL

We have learned so far that women need love like they need air to breathe & that men need respect like they need air to breathe. However, there is something else that a man needs that is probably just as high on his priority list. Any guesses? S-E-X. Ouch! I actually said it. There are many jokes out in the world about what happens to one's sex life once they get married. The jokes really aren't that funny but we all laugh because we are guilty of making these accusations come true. As if we are trying to cover up our flaws. Or, is it so that nobody will think that the comedian is talking about us? So let me ask you, does your bed look like this......

Be honest. Are you sending a crystal clear message on a much too regular basis that you just aren't interested? If a car needs gas to run, what happens if it doesn't get it? If our body needs food & water, what happens if it doesn't get it? If your husband needs sex, what happens if he doesn't get it? He may stop working. That could mean different things for different marriages. Some men will resort to pornography. Some men will be tempted & go outside of the marriage. Some men will simply shut down, withdraw, & stop working on their marriage. Which for us means, not showing the love that we need,  like we need air to breathe. 

Now, I am not saying that if you withhold sex from your husband & he looks at pornography, has an affair, or shuts down emotionally, that he is justified. He does have control over & is responsible for his own actions. But ask yourself, "are you inviting in unnecessary temptation?" 1 Corinthians 7 says, "The wife's body does not belong to her alone but also to her husband. In the same way, the husband's body does not belong to him alone but also to his wife."

It is true that a woman desires intimacy more than the actual sex itself, in most cases. Whereas, men may lack the need for intimacy & want to skip right to the sex. So, where is the common ground? Not having any sexual relationship does not seem like the most reasonable answer, yet it is usually what happens. Even though men do not have a NEED for intimacy, they still want to be desired. Who doesn't? If his wife is constantly rejecting his sexual needs, he does not feel desired. Since women have a NEED for love, consider this.....what if your husband told you that he would love you only two days a month? He says not to even ask him to love you on other days, because he won't. Plus, he won't even be happy about loving you those two days & he makes it seem like a chore. How would that make you feel? I would be devastated. Isn't that what some of you are doing? Of course, some of you don't mean it this way but that is how he is hearing it. 

On the other hand, some of you may have a very healthy sex life, or what YOU think is a healthy sex life.  However, just because you have sex often, doesn't mean that it is the best that it can be. Are you always engaged or are you thinking about the laundry or the dishes, do you act eager when he suggests making love, do you ever initiate to show him that you desire him, or do you ever go out of your way to make it a special event? (not just his birthday or anniversary) Men may not need the intimacy but they don't want to feel like they are forcing us to have sex with them either. 

Unfortunately in marriage, sex can get very routine. Just like the rest of our lives. It is easy for us to make excuses why this gets put on the back burner. I am sure that you already told yourself all of them while you were reading the last few paragraphs. You know, kids, work, chores, pets, homework, etc. I encourage you to remember what I said though, your husband NEEDS sex like he needs air to breathe. You have to make this a priority in your marriage so that you don't invite temptation in. 

I was thinking the other day about what happens when a spouse cheats. In most cases, if it is the wife, she cheated to feel sexy, because a man said just the right words that she doesn't hear at home, & to feel that intimacy that is lacking with her husband. If a man cheats, it is usually just for the sex. I believe that is why they say, "It didn't mean anything." To them, it really didn't. It was just sex. They were fulfilling their need. So what can we do to prevent the devil from coming into our bedrooms? To keep not only our husband's happy, but to be happy ourselves?

Lesson #13

Initiate sex with your husband. Don't just respond; initiate. We believe that you should have sex on a regular basis. If a husband or a wife is deprived, he or she can be subjected to a satanic attack. Read 1 Corinthians 7:5. When either of you deprives the other, temptation comes. A husband can feel put down for who he is when rejected sexually. 

I will be honest & say that the majority of what I covered tonight is not an issue in my marriage personally. However, tonight's challenge is the one that is the most difficult for me. I will "respond" any day of the week, but I do not initiate. I have no excuse for this. I want you all to know that I am not throwing these challenges out there to make you all uncomfortable & to cause stress in your life. I knew this challenge was coming for 13 days & I am still nervous. Lets make a pact that we will all do this lesson together. Lets make sure that on Thursday, November 19th, 2009, all of our husbands are smiling!

I have learned during this 14 day challenge & over the last few months, that the more you work on these simple principles, the easier, more fun, & more rewarding they become. Even though tonight's lesson will open some of our eyes, make us feel terrible, & break us out in acne, we WILL get through it. If your husband hasn't noticed your last 12 attempts, he WILL notice tonight. He will love it! You will see something in him that you may not have seen in a while.  Be proud that you are doing all that you can to make a difference in your marriage and that you are doing your very best to remove temptation for getting between you both. I am proud of you!

"Lord, please be with each of us tonight as we try one of the most difficult challenges for most of us. Give us the strength & encouragement to complete this lesson. Please bring me joy & happiness to do this for my husband & let that emotion show on my face. Lord, please allow my husband to see all that I am doing for him & for our marriage. Please hold my hand Father. I am scared & nervous. I need you to help me through this. Amen."

I knew that there was something that I was forgetting about when I posted this morning. It is something that a large majority of us are probably worried about too. Self confidence, self esteem, body image, etc. 

Ok, this was HUGE for me. I can't even tell you. I don't think that I am "bad" looking but I certainly don't consider myself "hot". I just don't think like that. I have always had self esteem issues. There isn't a reason for this, I have just been that way all of my life. I don't know anything else. Most of the time I feel like I can look in the mirror & be content with how I look. But, not when I am naked.

I will avoid going to the pool or the beach with friends that are in better shape, I keep clothes on until the last possible second, & I like the lights off. I have never been interested in spontaneous day time sex. I have to say, this can get in the way, & it was getting ridiculous.

I have never had anyone tell me how beautiful I am as often as Adam does. I am lucky enough to hear it at least once a day. Regardless of what I am wearing, makeup or no makeup, sweats or a dress. It doesn't matter. Adam told me the other day that he doesn't really notice whether I have makeup on or not. It has taken me years to believe him & I am not sure why. I could feel that I look 100% like poop & he will think I am as attractive as ever. I have always been worried about what I think I look like & what I feel that it has interfered with being loved even more. Isn't that why we want to look good to begin with.

My body is filled with imperfections. I am flabby, I have more stretch marks than I care to count, sags, bulges, wrinkles, & a HUGE c-section scar. I bet if you asked Adam to describe me, he wouldn't mention any of those things. He hardly even sees them. It is not how I "look" to him. He even went so far as to say that my c-section scar was beautiful because it is where Kayleigh came from.

A few things happened to get me in a place where I started to see things from his perspective. One, I realized that Adam never lies to me. He isn't going to tell me over & over again that I am beautiful just to hear himself talk. He truly believes that I am beautiful. Two, if Adam gains a little weight, has a stretch mark, gets a HUGE pimple, etc. I hardly even notice. If I do, he doesn't gross me out. He doesn't look less attractive to me. So why am I assuming that he thinks I am gross?

While I was in transition we figured out what might make me feel better so we could be spontaneous & not wait until bedtime for "playtime". We often find that if we wait until then we are way too tired & it gets pushed off. We missed an opportunity. First, there is the lights off, of course. Second, I would wear a tshirt, a short night gown, or a teddy. That way you can still be covered & sexy. That worked! I felt MUCH more comfortable.

Sure, I still worry about how many rolls are showing & I try to remain as straight as I can. LOL But, I don't let it prevent us from having sex. I think my husband would rather a junky me, than no me at all. He would rather me, than be tempted by other women or pornography. One of the great perks of being married is that you only have to show your "imperfect" body to one man. You don't have to suffer the dating scene. How awesome is that? Praise God!

I know it isn't easy. I can say that I have been there & still am in many senses. You just have to trust your man & go for it. Just do it! (and let us all know how it went) No details, please. LOL
Aimee Freeman

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Prayers - Day Twelve - Repost

Day Twelve - Repost - Sorry, this was a short one. Tomorrow's post is AWESOME!

Hello Ladies. We are getting closer & closer to the end of this 14 day challenge, can you believe it? I pray that all of you were successful in completing yesterday's lesson & that you each received a positive response from your husband. Did anyone's husband require a trip to the ER for going into shock? LOL

Lesson #12

Ask him how you can pray for him. We are assuming that he is a believer. If he is not, try it anyway, unless he has told you not to bring up spiritual things. For instance, if he is burdened about something at work, ask, "How can I pray for you that God will honor your good efforts?" Or, "I know that your boss has not been showing you the respect that he should, how should I pray for you?" Think of something that has been troubling him. 

Aimee Freeman

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Dreams & Desires - Repost

Day Eleven - Repost

On Saturday night we went to our first marriage ministry small group meeting at church. It was awesome! We met some amazing people, shared our story, praised God, introduced Love & Respect, & made many future friends. We had an unbelievable time. Both of us were so jazzed up after meeting everyone that we could hardly contain ourselves.

That excitement rolled right into Sunday. Adam & I attended the 11am service at Lifepoint Church. Adam volunteered on the parking lot team, & I was stationed at the first time guests table. We are now official volunteers! We were able to meet a ton of new people & we had the honor of meeting Pastor Jeff Kapusta & his wife, Michelle for the first time. We are so blessed to be a part of this church & the marriage ministry. We look forward to growing with Lifepoint & helping in any way that we can. I can't explain to you in words how Adam & I felt this weekend. Being more involved in church has ignited a fire in us. Lookout world, lookout Wilmington, here come the Freemans.

For someone who thought that she was perfect, I feel as though I am writing 14 days of things that were wrong with me. Thank God that He opened my eyes & gave the me courage & strength to make a significant change in myself. The crazy thing is that I always thought that I would be much more uncomfortable about sharing my faults with anyone, much less the world. If my problems, issues, insecurities, or flaws can help you all, then it is worth it. I am willing to peel back my skin & expose myself. WARNING - it may not always be pretty.

As some of you already know from following Kayleigh's blog, Adam is interested in Mixed Martial Arts aka MMA. He started going to classes about two years ago, has completed in a couple of tournaments, & even had been writing a blog for a short time. See - Adam's Journey To The Cage. Adam has incredible skill  & go can really far in this sport with the right training & support. Unfortunately, for a while, he didn't have support from me. To be honest, this was actually a complete misunderstanding that we have since worked out but what is important is how my behavior came across to Adam.

My first sign of negativity was the time that his "hobby" was taking away from our family. Fighting really isn't just a hobby to him, but that is how I was treating it. I wasn't very eager for him to get started in the first place & it certainly showed on my face & came across in my actions. After I saw how much it meant to him & that his fellow classmates praised him, I was accepting of him going to class & I supported him. Then one day he revealed to me that he wanted to get in the cage. Up until this point he was more interested in grappling, which is very close to wrestling. Basically, there isn't any striking. If he were to get in the cage, this would mean that there is a greater likelihood of injury, blood, facial transformation, etc. LOL Of course, my concern was only that I didn't want to watch my husband getting beat up. Please understand that I am not doubting my husband's ability or skill at all. Even the greatest fighters get caught the wrong way, get busted up, or even knocked out. I want to protect my husband as best as I can by being his wife.

What I didn't realize until Adam had made the decision to leave this past summer, was that he didn't feel that I was supporting his dreams & desires. My "concern" was coming off as negativity. I could not understand this because I had gone to see him at class, I sat front row at the tournaments, & I cheered him on endlessly. I was SO proud of him! I couldn't even believe that I was making him feel this way. What was worse, was that me "explaining" that this wasn't the case came across as convenient because he was leaving me. He thought that I was just saying anything to "keep" him. This couldn't have been further from the truth, but I could see why it appeared that way to him.

Since Adam & I have found our way back to each other I have been able to show him on several occassions that I fully support what he wants to achieve in MMA. I have taken more of an interest & I listen to his stories with a different ear. I actually look forward to hearing how class went & what he learned. Instead of wishing that he wouldn't go to class, I understand that he needs more classes to grow his skill even more. I am genuinely proud of his accomplishments & I want him to be the best that he can be.

I am excited to say that Adam is going to be in his first cage match in February! While I am nervous that he will spew blood everywhere or get a black eye, I have also learned that men treat injuries like trophies. Weird, I know. Who knew that I should consider that shaving scar on my leg from when I was 15 to be a first place prize? LOL I have absolute confidence in my husband & I can't wait to be right there for his first big win. I have grown to love this sport simply because he loves it. That shows him that I respect him & that I love him. I should never give anyone else the opportunity to be his #1 fan. That is my job. Now that I have learned from my mistakes, I don't plan to slack on the job again.

Why is this story important you ask? Well, here is today's challenge...

Lesson #11

Ask him about his dreams & desires. Say, "Honey, if you could do anything, what would you dream of doing? More than anything else, what would energize you?" Let him joke about sex, but say, "Apart from that, what would you most love to do & why?" He may ask you why you are asking him this. Just tell him that you were just curious & you wanted to know. After all, these are the kinds of questions that you might ask someone when you are dating to get to know them better. Don't be afraid of this. By asking these questions you are not committing to help him experience this dream. This is just a fun discussion. He isn't going to act on it just because you brought it up. Since God is at work in all of us to will his good pleasure, your husband might share things with you deep from his spirit. It will honor him that you will listen. 

Most of you don't know this, but Adam proof reads my message every day before I post it. It never hurts to have a second set of eyes, & he is the blog master after all. We always discuss what we are posting & he usually gives me a minor pointer here & there. Tonight he had some amazing input that we think will make a tremendous difference in the spirit of husbands everywhere.

Lesson #11 - Bonus Material

If you ask your husband about his hopes & dreams & you find that what he wants to do is something that with minor modification can fit into your family schedule......encourage him to do it. Stand by his side & support him. Adam informed me that often times, men want to succeed at a hobby or goal simply to impress their wives or their children. Adam wants to win that fight, not just for himself, but for all of us. He wants us to be proud of him more than the joy that the win itself will bring. Honestly, what does an achievement mean if you don't have anyone to share it with. 

You might also do something as simple as say, "Honey, you usually have to sit & listen to what went on in my day & I appreciate that so much. I know that I could go on & on venting about..... & you always listen to me. I am so sorry that I don't take the time to ask you this more often but, tell me how YOUR day went. What is going on with you?" Listen to him without distraction. You will surely see his spirit inflate. 

Have you been guilty before of not supporting your husband just because you didn't understand why he was interested in something? Did you take away from his joy by being negative? Have you hurt his spirit by dismissing him when he tries to share his stories about things that are important to him? I have. We expect our husbands to listen to us rant & rave about anything & everything that is important to us. Not only that, but we want them to stop what they are doing & make eye contact with us while we go on complaining & complaining. Why can't we stop doing the dishes for two minutes to listen & share in his joy about how many fish he caught? Something that he was doing not only for fun, but to feed his family? He may have felt like a provider & we showed him that we don't even care. He will never tell us this, because remember, he hates confrontation. He just lets it build & build until he can't take it. I challenge you to really open yourself up on this lesson. Ask him these questions with the intent of really caring about what he has to say. If you are doing it half way, he will know it. Most of us show our true feelings a little too well on our faces & in our body language. Don't let this seem like a chore, be genuine.

In having my conversation with Adam tonight, I couldn't help but wonder something. In many cases, when a couple divorces the man will behave in a way that most of us women don't. They seem to go back to all of the things that they did when they were "young". They get more interested in sports, their hobby, drinking & going out, or even looking for younger women. They are going after things that they feel that they "missed out" on because they were a husband & a full time dad. They want to feel young again. If it won't hurt our family, send us to the poor house, or is sinful, maybe we should let our husbands be "boys" occasionally & let them chase their dreams/hobbies. They desire it. They need it. They will love us for it.

"Lord, please give us the strength to complete this challenge tonight. I am sorry that I have not shown my husband the proper respect in this arena before. I see that I may have hurt his spirit even when I had the best intentions. Please show me how to be more genuine, loving, & respectful to my husband's dreams & desires. I would want the same interest from him. Amen."
Aimee Freeman

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Are You Getting The Most Out Of This? - Repost

Day Ten - Repost

Several days ago I mentioned how I started my personal transformation. Honestly, it didn't start out innocent. It started because I thought that I would find books, scriptures, & anything else that I could find that would "prove" my case that our marriage problems weren't me. I thought that I could show that they were all Adam's fault. Of course, this is because I am an angel & I could do no wrong. I even started going to counseling because I was sure that the counselor would back me up & then, HA....I would be declared "right".

I had already wasted 5 years of being "right" or should I say wrong? I thought of myself as a strong, independent woman. I fought for what I believed to be true & you couldn't convince me otherwise. Well, where did this get me really? Sure, it made me pretty successful in my business, but the recession has pretty much killed that. I was left with a broken marriage on the fast track to a divorce. The need to be strong, independent, or "right" is to get all of the things that we want. However, I was left with the one thing that I would NEVER want to be without, my husband. Why can't we learn to fight for our marriages like we fight when we want to prove our point? Do you want to be "right" at the cost of being divorced & having your children divided up like a bill or an asset?

Thankfully God was looking out for me. I told you that I had something like 13 books on self help, saving your marriage, separation, & how to pray. I felt like God led me in many different ways during those trying months & He led me to the right books at the right time. He knew what I needed to hear & when I needed to hear it. He also allowed me to really hear what those books were saying, to look deeply into myself, take ownerships of MY issues, & apply them. Praise God! I wasn't successful with this plan every single day & I don't expect that will happen in the future either. I am teaching myself how to be better, but I realize that I will never be perfect.

Last night I opened up, "The Language of Love & Respect" by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs. I have been spending so much time on, "Motivating Your Man God's Way" that I haven't been able to dig into this book as much as I have wanted to. I feel that God once again led me to what He wanted me to read & when He wanted me to read it. What I found on the very first few pages is something that I think most of us could benefit from based on the emails that I have received this week.

I am titling this, "How to get the most out of this blog, series, book, & journey". I challenge you & encourage you to implement these principles with an open heart & an open mind. I wish that I had this information when I was in the pits of my separation. I believe that it would have saved me a lot of time, pain, sorrow, & it probably would have gotten my marriage back together a lot sooner.

1. Read to understand how to respond to your spouse's negative behavior. Don't read to put your spouse on a guilt trip by saying, "See, this is you! This is what you do!" As you go through this journey & life transformation, it may will be easy to find examples of mistakes that your spouse is making. Please don't use what you find to attack your husband. Instead, use what God has so graciously revealed to you to learn how to respond to your husband with unconditional love & respect.

2. Read to understand your spouse. Learn why your husand reacts to you the way that he does. The goal is to have empathy for him so that you can respond in a loving & respectful manner. Remember, I told you about how I could have reacted much better to Adam when we had our most recent argument? I could have acted MUCH more loving & respectful by digging deeper to see what was "really" bothering him. I could have made him feel better with a simple gesture or by showing him that I cared that he was upset or hurting. I could have asked him what he needed from me to make him feel better. I would have wanted those things, so why am I not giving them?

3. Read to understand yourself, but be careful. Don't seek points that help you understand why you are saying or doing things & then use what you learn to justify your behavior. Also, don't seek to understand yourself just so that you can blame your husband by saying, "See? You made me act this way. It is really all your fault!" Your goal is to gain a better understanding so you can respond to your husband more loving or respectfully. Boy, I have been guilty of this. I am sure most of us have if we are being honest. Adam does it too. You could say, "Well, if you didn't do this then I wouldn't have done that." But, where does that really get us? We both end up hurting each other. If one of us (the more mature one) can turn the situation around, then only one of us got hurt. I promise you, it feels awesome when you are able to do this! It doesn't go unnoticed, even if they don't say it to you at that exact moment. In time, your behavior will be rewarded by your husband repaying the favor. You will undoubtedly one day hurt his feelings & he will show you love when you don't deserve it. Unconditional love. Can you show unconditional respect?

4. Read to help your spouse understand you, but be cautious here as well. Many spouses want to make this goal the first one instead of the last. If you start out by wanting to be understood instead of trying to understand your husband, you are approaching the entire topic of communication in a marriage in a very self-centered way. Self-centeredness does NOT lead to mutual understanding. Tell your husband that you are trying to make changes & THEN appeal to your husband to understand you.

I do not believe that we have to give up ourselves completely to make these changes. All we have to do is open our minds to accept that we aren't perfect, we make mistakes, we sometimes say hurtful things even though we didn't mean it, & that our husbands are good willed & battling demons just like we are. If we can believe that & do these challenges, we WILL make a difference in our marriages.

The testimonies are rolling in & it has only been a week. If you haven't been reading the comments each day, I invite you to do so. Don't just take it from me. Take it from all of the other wives that are doing this right along with you. Some of them are in a better place in their marriage but some of them are much worse than your own. Let that be your inspiration. If that doesn't work, use your need to be strong  & "right" to a good cause. Prove to all of us that you really can do this! I dare triple dog dare you!

Lesson #10

Apologize. Think back over the last couple of days (or weeks) when you should have apologized for something. Say, "I was reflecting on something that I said the other day. I said that disrespectfully. What I said was wrong. I am sorry. Will you forgive me?" He may have been 90% to blame. This is not done to re-open the subject.  You are apologizing for YOUR disrespectful part. If he starts justifying himself just say, "Honey, You don't have to get into that. I am apologizing for acting disrepectfully. Will you forgive me?" When he says, "Yes," respectfully say, "Thank you," & go do something else. Walk away. Please do not use this as an occasion to rehash the conflict. The showing of respect during this two weeks is not done for the purpose of getting him to look at his failure to love. You are showing respect in obedience to God's Word.

I know that this isn't going to be easy. I can say that because I have been there. I can't remind you enough that I am here for all of you. Please email me if you need me to help you. I will help teach you how to respond to a certain situation, I will help calm you down, I will be there for whatever you need. I will dedicate my time to help you if you want the help.

"Lord, please open my mind to the lesson today. Allow me to put my pride aside & complete this task. Allow me to act in a way that I desire to be treated by my husband. Help me to be the more mature one & work on myself & my marriage without the expectation of instant results from my husband. Lord, please give me a sign to let me know that my efforts are being noticed. Speak to me & show me even more that I can do to make a positive change. Father, I beg you to bless me with your forgiveness for not always treating my marriage as a priority. With your help, I am slowly recognizing my faults. Thank you, Lord. Amen."

Aimee Freeman

Monday, February 8, 2010

Is Modification Needed? Repost

Welcome ladies. I want to thank all of you that have added me on Twitter & Facebook. If you still want to "friend" or "follow" me you can just click on the links. I also see that many of you have grabbed a button from the sidebar & put it on your own blogs & websites! That is awesome. Wives are coming from your blogs all over & many marriages are getting stronger & stronger each day. Thank you all so much for your support & encouragement. I am feeling so blessed to be a part of this journey. Thank you all for your wonderful emails & comments on the posts. They keep me going! Honestly.

When Adam & I were separated, the hardest thing for me to wrap my brain around was how I was going to "show" him that I was changing if he was never around me. I mean, 3 1/2 hours away is pretty far! I was fortunate enough to have two weekends in the 2 1/2 months that Adam was gone. That's it though. Everything else that I did had to be over the phone, text, or in an email. Since we only spoke on the phone a small handful of times, it was pretty much email. I had to be resourceful. I couldn't do many of the tasks that these books were telling me in the exact way that they expected me to do them. I had to modify them. I REALLY wanted my marriage to work, so I was motivated & nothing was going to get in my way.

So, many of you have emailed me over the past few days asking me how you can do these challenges if you husband is already moved out, if your work schedules don't match up, etc. I encourage you to really think about each daily lesson. How can you make an adjustment to suit your situation? How can you begin to prove to your husband that he IS the most important person to you & that you will NOT let a little distance get in your way of making him happy again? What is 14 days? Dedicate yourself to giving this challenge your whole heart for 2 measly weeks. Is that too long to know that you have truly tried your hardest? That you have given this marriage all that you've got.

I will give you a few examples to get you started & I will try to give one along with each day in the future. If you come up with some great ideas, please post them in the comments section. There are a lot of women with this road block that could use your advice.

Day 3 - Tell him that you can't wait for him to be home when you are so that you can make his favorite meal for him. If it is going to be a few days, he will get excited thinking about it. If you have already separated, make his favorite meal & deliver it to him. Give him the dish with a note saying that you just wanted to do something nice for him, & then leave. No getting into conversations that could lead to arguments. Have no expectations. (I realize this will be hard)

Day 4 - If you can't say something nice about him to someone in front of him, send him a text or email saying something like this, "I ran into Susie at the store today. I was telling her how great you are doing at your job & I respected how many hours you are putting in." Or, something along those lines. Be creative. If you can't think of anything, I will help you. Just ask.

Day 5 - If you haven't seen him in a few days it should be fairly easy to dig up some kind of compliment. His shirt, his tan, his weight, or something.

Day 6 - This one can be tricky if you are separated. You don't want to be pushy. This is where I told Adam that I was sorry that I never treated "his things" as important to me. That left an imprint on him. After you say that though, you better mean it. Otherwise, you will lose all credibility & he won't trust your so called changes.

Day 7 - If you can't leave a note, leave a text or email. Take it one step further & send him a card. We love to send cards, don't we ladies? I have been doing this in the mornings several times a week. Adam gets up at 5am & I am NOT a morning person. He gives me a kiss goodbye which sometimes wakes me up enough to go use the bathroom & peek through my crusty eyes enough to leave him a text. I will say something like, "I hope that you have a great day today. Thank you for working so hard for our family. I respect you for waking up early every day without complaining. I love you." He has commented several times that this starts his day off on the right foot.

Day 8 - Can be done in text, email, or over the phone. Doesn't really need modification.

I hope that these ideas help. Just do me a favor. Think to yourself, is it really a challenge to do these lessons, or am I making excuses? Be honest with yourself.

I want to take a moment to say how very proud I am of all of you that have been doing these daily changes. I know that for some, each day has been extremely difficult but you have done it. That is something to celebrate. To show how much I appreciate you all, I wanted to send you some flowers. Well, virtual flowers that is. Enjoy!

I also want to let you know that as you begin making your life better & your marriage better, the devil will be watching out for you. He will try to get in the way of progress. I believe that is what happened to Adam & I. We were reaching so many people through Kayleigh's story that he tried to break us up. He knew how powerful we could be together. Don't let the devil in. Try to recognize when he is getting in the middle & regroup. Take a second to think, make a better plan, & apply your changes. You can do it & we are here to help you!

Lesson #9

Ask his opinion on some issue related to his expertise or interests. Phillipians 2:4 says, "Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others." If he is a political junkie, ask a political question. If he is a sports enthusiast, ask a sports question. Ask a question in an area that interests him. You are also letting him know that you respect his insights.

If you can get him to really get excited & you have several questions prepared, look out. He will be more than happy to talk about his interests with you. Go for it!

"Lord, thank you so much for guiding me each day so that I may make the right decisions for my family. Thank you for allowing me to have this chance. I have realized some of my previous errors & I ask for your forgiveness. Lord, I am trying so hard to right my wrongs, but I need your help. I have tried this on my own & it hasn't worked. Please continue to show me how I can be a better wife. Show me how to make my husband feel loved & respected. Father, thank you for having the faith in me that I can do this. Amen."
Aimee Freeman

Friday, February 5, 2010

If You Don't Have Any Thing Nice To Say - Don't Say Any Thing At All - REPOST

I just want to remind everyone that the Monday after Valentine's Day we will be starting The Love Dare. If you don't have the book, you might want to grab it the next time you are out. I will cover the challenges here so you don't HAVE to have it, but it is one of those books that I feel you will use over & over again throughout your marriage. 

Day Eight - Repost (Be sure to read the BONUS testimonial repost at the very end.)

Hey ladies. Thank you all for visiting with me today. I appreciate it more than I will ever be able to express that you are taking this journey with me. I know I already said this, but I can't believe that we are over half way through. Great job everyone! We are SO proud of each & every one of you!

I hope that you all LOVE the new blog layout. I wanted to keep the look simple but add a little pizazz. I owe ALL thanks to Tinika Rothell at By His Design. She took care of everything for me. I think that it looks awesome. Thank you, thank you, thank you. If any of you are looking to do a little or a lot to your blog, check her out. Tinika Rothell - By His Design. Let me know what you think.

I also added a button to the right side column. Please help me spread the word about this blog. You would be absolutely shocked if you knew how many wives I have heard from this week. Help me help your friends, family, & co-workers. I bet there are a handful of people that you know that are struggling in their marriages but they don't want you to know. This is a great way to reach out to them incognito. I can't do this without all of you!

1. Copy the html code located under the button.
2. If you have a Blogger account, go to layout.
3. Add a gadget.
4. Scroll down to html/java script & click to add.
5. Choose a title (I called mine - Grab A Button).
6. Paste the html code in the body & click save.
7. Click save again on your main layout page.
8. You are all done unless you want to move the location of the button on the layout.
9. If you need to move it, just drag it to the proper location & hit save again.

Some of you have mentioned checking the blog over & over to see when a new post comes up. Well, there is a solution. You can join (It's FREE) That way, when I post a new message you will get a text instantly! No more wondering. I have included a step by step process to make it as simple as possible.

1. Go to the main page at
2. Go to the upper right corner & sign in or create an account.
3. Go to the tool bar at the top & click find people.
4. Type in my user name - aimeefreeman (no space - all one word)
5. You will see me come up. Click on my name.
6. You will be taken to another screen. Right under my photo it will say follow. Click that.
7. Once you are following me there will be a little cell phone icon to the right. Click that.
8. You will now receive a text instantly when I post a new message.

I you want to follow me on Facebook as well you can just click on my name to be taken directly to my page. Add me as a friend & poof! Instant buddies. Don't you wish it was that easy to make friends, really? Aimee Freeman I will update my status each time that I post a new message.

Since we are rapidly approaching the end of this 14 day challenge, I started planning our future lesson assignments. I was so blessed that Lisa Shea sent me over a 30 day challenge along with daily prayers for our husbands. It was quite ironic because I found one prayer in a book that I really enjoyed during our separation. I prayed this prayer out loud every night before bed. (I did my other prayers through out the day as I needed to spend time with God) The prayer can be found in, "The Power of a Praying Wife" by Stormie Omartian. It is the prayer at the end of chapter 1 - The Wife. This prayer gave me peace & comfort on a daily basis. This book taught me so much & it isn't very long. There were only a handful of books that spoke to me during this very difficult time, I think four to be exact. This is one of them.

I have to say that when I was going through the separation, praying was something that I did no less than 10-15 times a day. It was more like begging talking to God in the beginning. I didn't really know what I was doing. I reached a point where I was saying the same things each day. I then became numb & couldn't even remember what my prayers were or needed to be about. Out of frustration, I ended up writing out my own prayer, which I read several times each day. It was extremely long (go figure), but I prayed about everything that I hoped God would do inside of me & inside of Adam. Guess what? They ALL came true! Praise God!

So, back to the 30 day challenge. I am so excited for this because these little lessons go along with what we have already been learning. Each day is backed up by scripture found in the Bible. The best part is that there is a SMALL daily prayer as well. This will be EXTREMELY helpful to those of you (like me) that feel uncomfortable praying or don't feel like you know how to pray. When Lisa Shea & Larry Brey prayed with me on the phone, all I could think was, "WOW. I want to be able to pray like that. I want to have the "perfect" words to say to someone else. I want to have the confidence to pray in front of others." This daily prayer will be teaching me just how to do that. I can't wait!

Tonight's challenge is pretty straight forward but it may require some deep thought. Remember, keep an open mind & I am sure that something will come to you.

Lesson # 8

Relay a compliment about him. Reflect over the last few weeks. Did someone say something positive about him & honoring to you about your husband? Build him up (1 Thessalonians 5:11 says, "Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.") Say, "I forgot to tell you, but so and so said this about you....."

"Lord, thank you so much for being by my side through this journey. It brings me peace that you are with me. Lord, please give me the wisdom to learn how to pray without begging for what I want. Please give me the faithfulness to stand by my husband, even when it is hard & I don't want to. Father, please show me in a clear & obvious way what you want me to do. Allow me to see the truth & not convince myself that you are showing me something that you are not. Please give me the strength to continue on this journey. Some days I feel as though you are all that I have & I thank you so much for that. I love you, Lord. Amen."


Yesterday afternoon I received an amazing testimonial from a wife that was ready to give up on her marriage only 8 DAYS AGO. She sent me her story on Tuesday of last week & because it took me a while to get back to her she didn’t even start making changes until Thursday or even Friday. What a transformation her marriage has made in less than a week. Adam & I are so appreciative that she agreed to share her testimony in hopes of helping another marriage. Thank you!

Grab a beverage, sit back & relax, open your heart & mind, & be prepared to be inspired.

Email #1 -

“First I would just like to say what an inspiration your story has been to me. I am in awe of your faith through all that you have been through. I am not sure I could do the same. The marriage ministry you are now providing seems to be an answered prayer for me.
A couple weeks back I read Adam’s post about your marriage, only hours after my husband and I were discussing our remaining options for our marriage, and I felt like his post was the Lord talking to us. Sadly, today we sit in the same spot we were in two weeks ago. No one has moved forward and nothing has changed. This is a little odd to share all my problems with someone I have never met, but at the same time I feel like your ministry is a God send. To be honest, it would be so much easier at this point to walk out and give up. However, we have a beautiful 14 month old daughter, and I want nothing more than to make this work for her and for us.

Currently, I am not sure we even married for the right reasons, and a part of me wonders if I should have went through with the marriage in the first place. The wedding had already been called off once, and we had parted ways several times, the last time being the last chance for me. It was at this point we both started seeing other people and realized life without each other was not what we wanted. This is the point when we rushed in to a marriage (that I had been waiting on for what seemed like years). I was excited but unsure of what the future held for us.

Prior to marriage I was saved, but I was not right with the Lord. My husband was not saved, and our relationship was never built on Christ. My husband and I were raised in two entirely different homes and this has been a recipe for disaster. My husband’s parents have never truly loved him the way a child should be loved. His father has been somewhat abusive throughout his life and to this very day my husband still quests after their love, even if it means choosing them over me. (Major problem # 1)

In the beginning we got along great and never had any major fights other than the usual, money, stress, house hold chores, etc. Over time I have learned to choose my battles. However, things have definitely changed between the two of us. I harbor a lot of anger and resentment for the way things “used to be” and the fact that he always promises to change, but he never does.

But the major issues didn’t arise until our daughter’s birth, which to me should be the happiest time of all. The major problem in our marriage is his mother. She is a pathological liar and she has a very defiant attitude that she is the grandmother and rules don’t apply to her. She and I have never been close, and I doubt we ever will be. She never offered to once help out after my c-section or even bring us dinner, even when my husband asked. She came by all the time, held the baby and allowed no one else to and called constantly demanding to know where we were, why we were there (even when my husband was at work). These problems have progressed over a year, and over time I have grown a huge resentment towards her for the things she does. She tells our daughter when she cries for me that she doesn’t need me, she only needs her; she tells us she will do whatever she wants with our daughter and we can basically like it or lump it.

Our daughter’s first Christmas was ruined because she was screaming her head off for me and she refused to give her to me (I left in tears) and when our daughter finally went to sleep she purposely woke her up. Her first birthday party was ruined because she would not allow anyone else to visit with her. She kept taking her outside away from everyone and when my family tried to tell her bye, his mother would pick her up and take her away on purpose. She showers her with gifts every time she is around (every holiday is like Christmas at their house). If we ask her not to do something she does it anyway. We can tell her we have plans, she shows up anyway. Needless to say there are lots of problems with her and because of that, us.

The problem between us is he doesn’t want to deal with any of these issues, and all they have to do is get on to him for something that has to do with our daughter and he takes it out on me. No matter what his parents do it is okay, because he is still questing for their love. She has since figured out he is still trying and does whatever she can to get on his good side.

If he and I take a day together or as a family she calls every hour. We cannot even have a dinner to ourselves. Saturday was trick or treat and she called him when we were at my mom’s house to see if we were still there and wanted to know why.

I am lost on what to do. This is his mother, and it is obvious things are not going to change and we can’t change her. I cannot continue to stay in this marriage with things the way they are. She is tearing us apart. Nothing is the same between us anymore. Our marriage is dead. The spark is totally gone. He finally admitted it himself a couple weeks ago. He does not like to deal with problems; but finally he at least admitted that. The problem is we don’t know how or if you can get it back. The love is gone, and there is no desire for intimacy. We don’t greet each other at the door anymore and sometimes we go to bed without saying good night. It breaks my heart because we used to have a love so powerful I would run to the door the minute I heard his truck pull up, and we could sit for hours and do nothing but still have the best time.

I am weary of trying and weary of holding on to something I fear we may never get back. How do you get something back that has been gone for so long?

Please be in prayer for us. I just feel so hopeless.

Thank you for this ministry and thank you for sharing your inspiring story.

May God Bless you and your ministry………”

Yesterday’s Email -

“Hey Aimee. First let me just say again I am so thankful for what you are doing with this ministry. Don’t let anyone else tell you otherwise or let anyone discourage you from what you are trying to do.

Friday night was awesome! Before even cooking dinner Friday night I showered, fixed my hair (just the way he likes it), redid my make up and I even painted my toe nails LOL. That is a plus for me with a 14 month old and no one else home. I am surprised my carpet is not a shade of red at the moment, but she did much better than I anticipated. I actually felt really good about the whole evening, but I must admit, I was a nervous wreck! I seriously felt like it was our first date or something.

I prayed several times for strength to meet him at the door. I admire that in your original post for this challenge you mentioned how awkward this is for those of us whose marriage is on the brink of divorce. I could have never imagined how awkward this would be for me, but you were right it was. I prayed about it and will even admit (to you) my whole heart was not in it. There was that stubborn part of me saying “don’t do something for him that he does not do for me”, but I told that voice to be quiet and went forward with the plan. When I heard his truck pulling in the drive way I thought I was going to upchuck. When he opened the door I met him there, gave him a big hug, kiss and told him I missed him. You would have thought I handed him a million dollars or the keys to a brand new truck. I have not seen him smile like that in a very long time. He was very receptive and grinning and giggling all over himself. He noticed my effort to look good and went on and on all night about how good I looked and smelled and he even noticed I wore my hair just like he likes it and painted my toenails.

You were right, however, about the sarcastic comments and questions; he did ask what was up, what was going on, what did I want, etc.

His response has been so inspiring. It gave me just what I needed to keep going. Already I could see a change in him and in us just by this one little gesture. IT WAS AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!

Do you know that he even told me, “This feels like the old us again. I like it.”


Our 4 year anniversary is next week; I feel like this glimmer of hope has been the best anniversary gift of all.”

This came in this morning –

“If I had not started following Kayleigh’s blog, and in turn read Adam’s post and in turn found your ministry I don’t know where we would be right now. I feel 99% sure we would have been divorced down the road because I would have walked out. I felt so hopeless until now. You decided to share your story to help someone, and I feel compelled to do the same.
 All this time I have been blaming him for everything. And to be honest through all this I realized one of my favorite things to preach to him “that marriage is a two way street” was not something I was doing myself. I never realized I was being disobedient to the Lord by not treating my husband the way I was commanded to. Now I realize those instructions, just like everything else in the Bible, are there to teach us how to live. One tiny gesture made the world of difference and for the first time in a long time I have FAITH that this marriage will find its way back to way things used to be and to an even better place. My husband and I have always believed we were stronger people for having gone through what we did prior to getting married, and I whole heartedly believe we will definitely be a stronger couple for having gone through this.

I received my books and CD last night. I was so excited to look at them, but I didn’t get a chance because my hubby was home. He was however VERY CURIOUS about the package and he kept insisting he wanted to see what books I ordered. I tried several times to veer him away from this. He would have never been interested before and I hated not to tell him, but at the same time I didn’t want him to think this was a project. I listened to part of the CD on the way to work this morning. I LOVE it. Everything that was said was SO TRUE, and it has already made a huge difference for me. It has really made me look at my husband in a different way. It has been very encouraging and uplifting. I brought it in with me so I can listen to the rest of it today.

One more thing, I was able to read some comments the other day and I was in shock after reading the post about being a door mat. I can see where this has been misunderstood over time with our society and its beliefs in the modern world; I too had this attitude a long time ago. However, as difficult as it has been, I have realized that I am not following God’s commandment to respect my husband so why should I get love in return? Just like Adam said you have to give to get. And two wrongs never make a right. Even if in the end my husband doesn’t change, I pray for strength to keep being obedient to the Lord. I definitely do not feel like a door mat, and I don’t feel like your challenges and posts are encouraging us to be door mats either.”

Ladies, I mean it from the bottom of my heart when I say that I truly believe that these principles can work for each & every one of you. Please give the Love & Respect series a chance. You have absolutely nothing to lose. Who knows, you could be our next incredible testimonial that with inspire other wives & save numerous marriages. Praise God!
Aimee Freeman

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