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 Twitter.com. (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 http://www.twitter.com/.
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
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."
BONUS REPOST - TESTIMONIAL
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.”
THANK YOU – THANK YOU – THANK YOU – THANK YOU – THANK YOU – THANK YOU – THANK YOU – THANK YOU – THANK YOU – THANK YOU.
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!