Posted in Mentoring others, Tools for Couples

What’s Discernment?

I was recently asked this question.Anibal-Group-RealtyNetWorth-Lake-Shannon-original-ski-club-member-organizer

First, why do you need it? I’d say simply to carry out the Great Commandment and Great Commission. Isn’t that your life purpose? (I pray it is or will be).

  • memorizing scripture passages have helped me in this area … its my starting point for thought/speak. knowing to start there instead of other ‘sources of wisdom’ is key. To me, there is no wisdom that doesn’t filter thru scripture. … I’d rather read Matt 5,6,7 Sermon on the Mount (I can resolve most anything here) than a bunch of don’t-fit-together sayings, quotes and illustrations. Once I turned off media for 1 yr so I wouldn’t get any ‘opinions’ confusing me.

Further reading:  Here you will find our 2-fold life purpose, vertical worship of God, horizontal discipling of fellow man:

  • In Matthew 22:34-46, Jesus is questioned by the Pharisees about what is the greatest commandment in the Law. Jesus responds to the Pharisees’ question in Matthew 22:37-39 saying, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the great and foremost commandment. The second is like it, you shall love your neighbor as yourself.” Following His statements, in Matthew 22:40, Jesus says that everything in the Law and Prophets depends on these two commandments. Strikingly, Jesus ends this discussion with the Pharisees in Matthew 22:42-46 asking them, “What do you think about the Christ, whose son is He?” and no one is able to answer.

Posted in Mentoring others

Marriage, finances, and governmental policies.

So says Fox News: “Marriage is a great anti-poverty program. So why does government discourage it?”marriage and finances

There’s a lot in this article, I’ll simple excerpt it and let you pour coffee and dig in yourself:

  • “According to the Brookings Institution, the U.S. would have 25 percent less poverty today if we had the marriage rates we had in 1970 (79 percent of  U.S. adults were married then, versus only 52 percent today). Cutting the poverty rate by a quarter would of course benefit individuals who escape poverty, and also benefit government and taxpayers by cutting the amount that needs to be spent on assistance to poor people.”

More good reading:


Posted in Mentoring others, New couples

Mentoring 101: a little truth can set others free

I recall the “growth times” I was “trusted with” more than a few times in life. They’d start similar, and as the years passed they would pan out more easily each time. Hence “growth”. The first time you are given the opportunity for growth ( aka your life is thrown for a tail spin ), you go through all the emotions – and quickly. Then you scramble since you still control the world having not yet learned to look to God asap for how this “can work together for good”. Well, this all familiar stair steps sequence is on the tools page as you sort out the typical 5 steps to healing, but what if you mentoring folks would take particular note of the  “honesty factor” and dispense accordingly when you see another in the throws of such challenge ?

So much easier would those times have been had others more quickly said “been there, experienced all that and then some, lived to see another day”. Actually, this honesty is most useful before the storm clouds move in.

To wit: today’s link regarding “gee, why didn’t you just level with me during my young and impressionable days?”

Posted in Couples in Challenge, Mentoring others

Rule violation re: greener grass

Pet peeve: please don’t send me emails or FB posts with “nice sayings”, the only wisdom I really like to glean from are scriptural passages, and rarely scriptural convictions/scoldings. Hows that for self defensiveness.

That said, I’m going to break my own rule about “nice sayings” ( and I really do tend to ignore 99.9% of them ).

Every time a spouse tells me about greener grass I give basic relevant scriptural bullet points to them. But really, those Tough Talk to a Stubborn Spousethat want green grass: get out the fertilizer, de-thatch often, weed n feed, rake up n discard the droppings, use mower more often, and bag it !

ps, here’s all the excuses in one of my fav’s:

Posted in Couples in Challenge, Mentoring others, Tools for Couples

You married who you admired…now live at peace.

Few specific words do I recall of writers and speakers I take scripturally sound wisdom from, but these I remember from long ago. He was discussing a spousal complaint against the other…

“My spouse is so ( such and such, aka: consistent and somewhat boring )…well, what drew you to be attracted way back when ?…. I suppose it was the fact that he was so ( such and such, aka: predictable when others where so immature ). So then, he is what you where attracted to eh?….  Ah, I see your point.”

I think back to another couple – sad ending. One spouse was prone to be very confrontational and it pushed away 2 spouses …. certainly part of the equation to the end of 2 marriages in my opinion. So I ask such people now: “where did you learn this ?… well, my mother was pushy, apt to put duress into seemingly simple conversations…and how did you respond ?… I guess I learned the same posture in a way to self preserve and push back, I guess I’ve carried this into my relationships – the quality I don’t like in my parent I now have myself”.

Folks, please look away from the mirror next time you wish to say “how can you treat me like that ?” Now granted, they probably shouldn’t “treat you like that”, but, if you really want an answer to the question, try to understand your spouse, how they came to be like that, and help them understand themselves so that the cycle may be broken.

Don’t like it in my words ? Ok, try Gods:

  • If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.
  • Proverbs 3:30 Do not accuse a man for no reason–when he has done you no harm.

    Matthew 5:24 leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift.

    Mark 9:50 “Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can you make it salty again? Have salt in yourselves, and be at peace with each other.”

    Romans 14:19 Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification.

  • ( aka: EDIFY, Love, your webmaster)
Posted in Couples in Challenge, Mentoring others, New couples, Tools for Couples

Unedifying practices …why start ?

Today I read a posting where a young couple made light of a doctrinal teaching, indirectly making fun of scriptural directions as viewed by the denomination that took a certain position.

In earlier days I can’t tell you how many (more than now even) times I put my foot in my mouth by taking a “funny” position. You just never know which person in your presence just lost a sister or son to suicide, who’s family member just passed away or was diagnosed with a terminal disease. Even closer to home, you don’t know when your spouse is having a difficult day simply pondering a close friend or remembering a family member regarding a situation that reflects hardships of life. These hardships will come to everyone sooner or later.

Since hardships will come, and as the apostle Paul, we should learn to welcome the growth & ministry opportunities that will come with them, why not take an attitude of living daily in support/ mentor/ nurture and descipling of others around you….even yourself ?

Take a look at the default activities in your life. Do they grow, edify & strengthen or not so much ? Making fun, slang, “gentle cussing”, only one drink or “social” drinking, sarcasm. What would happen if we replaced these activities with when we see hurt or need we immediately offer a quick prayer. When we get hurt, is it the Spirit bringing to our mind a reminder to pray for others in the same situation ? When we see pain/loss/etc, what do we have to offer. Confusion, what can we study to have more to pass along. When we argue strongly our position, does it take into count the possibility that we may influence much deeper by gently questioning or attentively listening ?

Some things will lead us wrong when trials and tough days come….some things planned and practices daily will get you ready for the storm – yours or those you’ve yet to minister to.

You may be surprise how your ministry influence grows in strength and how your life centers on Gods purpose when you execute according to a planned instead of off the cuff response to every aspect of your daily walk.

God keep.