Smiley

Proverbs 15:13 – A happy heart makes the face cheerful, but heartache crushes the spirit.

Here’s some fun information that you probably already knew but didn’t think about all together in relation to your marriage.

1. Research has clearly shown that people who smile more are healthier and happier. It has been scientifically proven that just by making the facial expression of the smile (not feeling happy – just smiling randomly) actually releases endorphins and other “happy” hormones in your body. Smiling can actually make you happy (even if you start out unhappy). I read about a German study where people held a small pen clenched in their teeth (forcing the smiling expression), and they reported feeling happier. There are many other studies proving the same thing.

2. Smiling is contagious. When other people are smiling (and the same goes for laughing), it triggers you to smile or laugh along. Even just reading the words “smile” and “laugh” have been proven to evoke the same physiological changes that actually feeling happy do. Smile, smile, smile, SMILE – laugh! laugh!!! LAUGH LAUGH (Did it work? Are you smiling? I know I am!). Oh, and the opposite of both of these points are true. Making a frown can dampen your mood, and being unhappy is also contagious.

Let’s think about these two points 1. Smiling even when you’re unhappy can change your mood 2. Smiling is contagious. Hmm – so what does that say about our homes? Well, it seems quite clear what point I’m trying to make. Sometimes, “you gotta fake it till you make it” – at least when it comes to being happy, especially because smiling is contagious!

For example, the other day I walked in the door after work with a pout on my face. My husband said, “what’s wrong?” In all honesty, nothing was wrong. I didn’t realize that my face was frowning, but it was. Maybe I was tired. I don’t know, and so my response was, “nothing is wrong.” Well, this response didn’t pan out so well, and now, because my face was in a pout, my husband was convinced that I was upset but wasn’t telling him. Then, I was upset because I couldn’t convince him that I was perfectly fine. How hilarious is that! I actually laughed about it (which truly convinced him that I wasn’t upset about anything because I SMILED). All this because I was frowning! The frown was contagious (my husband got upset). Then, I smiled and laughed, and the whole situation was diffused. He smiled too.

I understand that usually there are more technicalities to deal with in settling an issue. Smiling by itself usually won’t fix the whole matter. Sometimes smiling can come off as condescending or patronizing, but generally speaking, if you keep a smile on your face – even when you don’t feel particularly happy – it will improve the mood of your home. Say CHEESE 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

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How He Loves Us

John Mark McMillan wrote a beautiful song called, “How He Loves Us” about the Love that God has for us, and I wanted to share it with you all today. This is Kim Walker from the band Jesus Culture singing it. Remember that our marriages are supposed to mirror the love that Jesus has for the church. Love on your spouse today.

Happy Friday everybody 🙂

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JoC1ec-lYps

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Superman

Superman is the best!

I don’t understand the Batman fans, the Spiderman followers, or more recently the Iron Man lovers. Superman could whup all their butts with his eyes closed (I know they were in separate comics, but just go with it). Not even the Hulk stands a chance against Superman. Of course, my husband would not be happy if he knew that I said that. His favorite character is The Incredible Hulk. He likes how he goes crazy and seemingly nothing stands in his way.

You know why I like Superman? He flies. He is faster than a speeding bullet and more powerful than a locomotive. Did I mention that I never read a comic? Oh, and I didn’t watch any of the Louis and Clark series growing up. I also was not a Smallville fan (is that show even on anymore?). You want to really know why I liked Superman while I was growing up? He is a big, strong man with black hair and blue eyes, and what can I say? I’ve always found that attractive. All my close friends knew that –  just like I knew that one of my friends really liked lean, tall, dirty blonde guys. Before you check us off as shallow people, please understand that we had other things that were requirements in the boys we liked.

We literally wrote out a list of requirements for our future husbands. Is that weird? Some of my requirements were: A strong Christian – No anger problems – Able to treat me as a FRIEND as well as a wife – among other things. I’m trying to remember some of my friend’s requirements. I think she said: A strong Christian – A virgin – Able to make me laugh, and I’m sure there were more.  We wrote out a list of requirements, and then we wrote out a list of what we just liked. I think mine was two pages long (I can’t find it right now).

You want to hear some of the things I liked but weren’t requirements: black curly hair, blue eyes, likes sports (I have no idea why I put this down because nobody in my family watches sports), and not materialistic.

You want to know something? I would have married my husband if he was in the body of a slug and hated sports. Instead, God gave me a big, strong man with black curly hair, blue eyes, who LOVES sports, who is not materialistic, and also fulfills all my requirements! He’s my Superman!

I know this sounds like a confusing message, but what I’m trying to say is we have God-given traits that we are attracted to in the opposite sex. That’s okay! “Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.” As you delight in the Lord, he changes your unholy desires too, but that’s another message for another time. Today what I’m just saying is that God cared about what I found desirable. Would I love my husband if his hair fell out and his eyes turned orange? Of course – I love him more everyday, and that has nothing to do with his physical appearance. However, I believe that God gave me those silly (kind of shallow) desires so that I would be more attracted to my future husband before we were married.

Hmm, I’m curious if my husband likens me to the Hulk . . .

Did you ever write out a list of requirements for a future spouse? Did God fulfill one of your desires that you could have lived without, but God gave you anyway?

(Oh, and my friend will be celebrating her five year anniversary this year to a man who fulfilled all of her requirements AND has the very tall, lean, dirty blonde traits that she always found attractive.)

Posted in For the Single or Dating, Love, Random | 3 Comments

Balloons

Hello Friends, I have a very serious and grave question to ask you today.

What in the world are you supposed to do with balloons? You know – the ones that you get as a present? Personally, I love balloons. They’re like colored bubbles that last longer. It makes me happy to look at them, but what do you do with a balloon that seems to last forever? Maybe I’m the only one to have experienced this. My husband – sweet heart that he is – got me a very large heart shaped balloon for valentines day. Well, that balloon is still kicking – over three months later! A while back, I made a joke that the balloon symbolized my love, and I would only love my husband for as long as the balloon stayed afloat. I’m starting to wonder if he took that seriously, and every night after I fall asleep, he sneaks downstairs and blows it up a little more to keep it floating. Here I am waiting for the balloon to at least sag a little, but nope – it’s still going strong.

What do you do with the balloon that will never die?

PS – don’t look for some deep spiritual meaning behind this post – it’s just a silly question 😛

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Pets Interrupting Sex

I am one of those people who turns red at everything. It can be ultra annoying and very embarrasing. I’m very glad that you guys can’t see my face through this computer now, because it is in full blush today. I really cannot believe I’m going to post this, but here it goes . . .

A while back, a girl that I worked with asked me a hilarious question that (I hope) some of us married folk can relate to. She asked me if I made my cat leave the room when my husband and I had sex. This topic is so funny because, the animals don’t have any idea what is going on. This coworker went on to discuss her annoyance with her dog while she was having sex. Apparently her dog would try to get in on the action, seeing it as some kind of fun-rough housing time!

To answer her question: no. We never made our cat, Pickles, leave the room. My husband always jokes that Pickles is a “big pervert” because she watches us.  Other times, we think she’s just disgusted by us, but it’s like a car accident that she just can’t look away from. Pickles doesn’t (usually) interupt us or anything, so she doesn’t get kicked out of the bedroom. However, it is totally different for our dog, Tootsie.

I’ve posted before about my doggy. We love her, and yes – I know some people think it is weird, but she sleeps in bed with us. When we first got Tootsie, if we started to get busy in bed, Tootsie would just position herself in the corner (we have a big king bed) or hop off the bed leaving us alone, but as time went on, she doesn’t take well to being excluded from the fun. Needless to say, she has now been sentenced to the crate for any planned love making, but for the unplanned, well, Tootsie is a little dense in the head. Let’s just say it takes her a while to get the idea that we are BUSY. I’ve heard that using a spray water bottle might work, but my dog happens to love water. The whole situation makes for some hilarious stories that only my husband and I know.

Do you have pets that need to be removed from the area when you’re making love?

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Big Flirt

Flirt – to act amorously without serious intentions (dictionary.com)

I am a big fan of flirting with my husband. We love to laugh and play, and we’re newly weds so flirting is still kinda natural for us. We shouldn’t ever forget about it. Let’s face it, flirting with your spouse is super hot.

Let’s take a look at that definition again: “Flirt – to act amorously without serious intentions.” I know that this definition is talking about “serious intentions” of a relationship, but give me a little artistic license here 🙂 I think couples have trouble with flirting once they have been married for a while because they “act amorously” WITH “serious intentions” of getting busy in the bedroom (There is nothing wrong with this – all our love glasses could use an extra dollar today!), but we tend to forget all about flirting. You remember flirting? Before we were married, I used to hold onto my husband’s keys, and he would have to “fight” me for them. It’s hard to keep that same kind of playfulness in marriage, but flirting is important. In marriage it is a little different because you do have more freedom in exactly how you flirt, but you should try it out today. I’m having so much trouble trying to think of examples of flirting in marriage that are appropriate or that I feel comfortable typing out, but instead I’m just going to say – be typeably (I am aware that I made that word up) inappropriate while flirting with your spouse.

I probably should have done some kind of research or seen what other married couples say on this topic before posting this, but instead, I’ll open up the discussion for that. Talk to me. Do you flirt with your spouse?

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Ugly Green Eyes

Today at church, a friend of mine said she would check out my blog. She said it was enjoyable to read people’s blogs especially because you can see how they think. A blog can be a window into someone’s mind. A person’s unspoken opinions and how they understand the world is reflected in their writing. I am scared of what this woman is going to think of me after my blog today, but . . .

I’ve written too many posts about the things that I do well, and I must admit one of my many weaknesses. This is something that I have to wrestle with, and I wanted to share my thoughts on it today.

I have deep, jade green, ruthless, relentless, jealous eyes.  Naturally, my eyes are brown, but sometimes, my ugly green eye of jealousy will start to show. If I feel like a girl is even smiling or talking to my husband too much, I literally have to take deep breaths to control myself. There have been times that I had to walk away before something too sharp came out of my mouth.  It’s something that I still struggle with. I’ve come a loooooong way, but even recently, I had to fight that green eye again.  While jealousy might not technically be a “sin” and a little bit is considered normal, I can tell you first hand that too much of it is not healthy. It can wrack your body and steal the life-blood out of your bones. Though it shows itself through my jealousy, I know that my jealousy is really something all together different. It took me a while to realize this, but it is a direct result of a deep insecurity.

On the surface and even much of my true personality is very confident, but for some reason when it comes to my relationship with my husband (even before we were married), I have a deep, latent insecurity that I’m not good enough.  There is no reasoning for this feeling. Please, be assured that I have a super encouraging and complimentary husband, who is always telling me that I’m the best, but I easily see my faults. I didn’t do the dishes. The house is a mess. I forgot to wash his gym clothes. I burnt the dinner. I gained weight. blah blah blah.

For those of you who struggle with jealousy, here are some things that have helped me. For those of you with buckets of confidence, I invite you to pour some of your encouragement or thoughts on us.

Call It Like It Is

Like I said, it’s more than just jealousy. You’re not secure in yourself about something. What do you get jealous about – someone else’s money, body, success? That’s what you’re insecure about. For me, I was insecure with my body – which is a pretty common one for girls with jealousy. For men, it’s often money or success that can give you the green eye. Though, I’ve seen plenty of men insecure with their body as well. I know this sounds simple, but when you’re in the trap of jealousy, often you can’t see what’s causing it. Once I realized what I was insecure about, I had to do something about it.

Wage War

***Personal Story Alert*** About six years ago I was in a really dark place in my life. I felt like I was drowning in an ocean of jealousy, and if I tried to lift my head out of the water, a wave of evil thoughts would come and push my head down. I was a Christian!  I loved Jesus! I prayed and read my Bible, but I had slowly and methodically given into self hatred and jealousy, letting it take root in my heart, and I was starting to let it kill me. This was a very scary place for me to be in, and I started telling anybody that could help me. Please hear me, if you are struggling with jealous thoughts born of insecurity, do not let it grow in your heart. WAGE WAR. Tell trustworthy, dependable, prayerful, Christians.  I told friends, and we prayed. I told my Pastor and his wife (they already could tell something was up). I told my parents. I told my other leaders. Most importantly, I confessed it to God. This was hard to do at first, but I distinctly remember a moment when there was a change in my heart. It was one day when I was particularly down on myself, and while I was speaking words of negativity, God literally gave me different words to speak. If I ever start feeling bad about myself, or I start to get jealous, I speak those words to myself. God is awesome that way. He gave me weapons to fight with, because he knew I was trying to do the right thing by waging war. He will do the same for you. When you wage war on something, God fights with you.

Change direction

If I started to get jealous, my mind would go a million miles an hour with negative thoughts that I considered truth. I had to learn to stop those thoughts immediately and turn around. Sometimes, I would have to physically turn around to remove myself from whatever was tempting me to become jealous, but much of the victory was turning my attitude around. Easier said than done, but if done consistently, it does become easier. Part of changing direction is to fill your mind with the opposite of where it was going, and scripture is probably the best way to do that. Philippians 3:8 was an important scripture to me. “What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish that I may gain Christ.” It’s hard to explain exactly why this scripture was so instrumental in my healing, but it was.

I hope that somebody can learn something from that today. If nothing else, let it be a testimony of God’s greatness. If it wasn’t for him, I certainly would have drowned in that ocean of jealousy. The waters were turbulent, but I called out to God. He commanded the sea to “Be Still.”

Wow – longest post ever! Thank you for hearing me out. Be blessed today:)

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