Psalm 37

[Editors Note: This is an email written in 2013 to one of the many women around the world that Grandma Rosy and Papa prayed for. She was on the “Husband List” and enjoyed Grandma Rosy’s words of encouragement and testimonies of faith.]


I have to tell you that yes, I was the one you were to share with about the 37th Psalm. It is so precious to me. We were going thru a very hard time in 1983, financially, and facing a law suit, that was a year away in which we could have lost everything. Every day that year, before that trial I clung to that Psalm. I took a picture of that page in my Bible, and also the front and back of my raggy Bible, the most precious thing I own. At the bottom you might be able to read, I have written, “From the despair of 1983 to the JOY of 1988”. And see the passages that I marked that were so precious to me. Since we had no insurance, if we had lost that trial we would have lost our land, and that was the only thing we had then, so the words of vs. 33 [“The Lord will not abandon him to his power, or let him be condemned when brought to trial”] were very special and also the many times it said, “for the blessed by the Lord shall possess the Land”. We did win the trial, but had to pay $2,000 in attorney fees, which was a great amount for us at that time, but we still did “possess the land”.

But now as I read that Psalm I see different passages pop out that I think are for you. Verses:

4, “Take delight in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.”

5, “Commit your way to the Lord, trust in Him and He will act.”

7a, “Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for Him.”

23-24 “The steps of a man are from the Lord, and he establishes him in whose way he delights, though he fall, he shall not be cast headlong, for the Lord is the stay of his hand.”

28, “For the Lord loves justice; he will not forsake his saints.”

34a, “Wait for the Lord and keep to his way, and he will exalt you to possess the land.”

Oh, dear one, lift your heart and know that the Lord has something special for you this coming year. I loved your letter and read it outloud to Papa. We will be praying for you.

May you have a happy birthday tomorrow and may this new birthday year be filled with “glad surprises from the Lord.”

Much love,

Grandma Rosy and Papa Dick

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Lesson on Obedience

Exodus 14:15 “The Lord said to Moses, “Why do you cry to me?  Tell the people of Israel to go forward.  Lift up your rod, and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it, that the people of Israel may go on dry ground through the sea.””

Exodus 17:5-6 “And the Lord said to Moses, “Pass on before the people taking with you some of the elders of Israel; and take in your hand the rod with which you struck the Nile, and go.  Behold, I will stand before you there on the rock at Horeb; and you shall strike the rock and water shall come out of it, that the people may drink.””

Numbers 20:8-9 “Take the rod and assemble the congregation, you and Aaron your brother, and tell the rock before their eyes to yield its water; so you shall bring water out of the rock for them; so you shall give drink to the congregation and their cattle.”  And Moses took the rod from before the Lord, as he commanded him.”

Numbers 20:11-12 “And Moses lifted up his hand and struck the rock with his rod twice; and water came forth abundantly, and the congregation drank and their cattle.  And the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “BECAUSE YOU DID NOT BELIEVE IN ME, TO SANCTIFY ME IN THE EYES OF THE PEOPLE OF ISRAEL, THEREFORE YOU SHALL NOT BRING THIS ASSEMBLY INTO THE LAND WHICH I HAVE GIVEN THEM.””


Moses’ punishment always seemed so harsh for such a seemingly small disobedience.  It seems that Moses used the rod twice before to do miracles, once to strike the Nile and then to strike the rock for water.  Then in Numbers 20:8 he is told to take the rod and TELL the rock.

I can see Moses’ side of this.  Perhaps he wasn’t listening so closely and since he had always used the rod, just assumed that was what he was to do this time also.  It doesn’t seem fair after all he had done to lead his people out of Egypt and all he had put up with during the years in the wilderness.

But then it gives us insight into God’s thinking and what obedience means to him and what it means that we should fear God.

Perhaps he doesn’t want us to get in a rut.  “But we have always done it this way.”  Perhaps Moses was getting a little too attached to that rod, and thinking the power was in that instead of in God.

Do we ever do the same thing?  A certain way has been successful for us and we feel the Lord leading us to do something in a different way and our instinct says, “Oh no, I have always done it this way.  I feel comfortable doing it this way.” etc.

Also do we always use the same “tool” or method in doing something.  We are not to rely on anything but only listen to God, and obey him.

Could it be sort of like athletes who have to wear the “winning” socks or shirts…because they wore it while winning, perhaps relying on that instead of the skill God has given them.

Perhaps we need to learn that if the Lord is telling us to do something in a different way that we have done before, in which we might also have had success, to not fight it but DO it.  We must trust God and not our past achievements and not the instrument that we used in the past.

Deut 5:29 ” Oh that they had such a mind as this always, to fear me and to keep all my commandments, that it might go well with them and with their children forever.”

Psalm 25:14 “The friendship of the Lord is for those who fear him, and he makes known to them his covenant.”

Rev 14:7 “…and he said with a loud voice, “Fear God and give him glory, for the hour of judgement has come; and worship him who made heaven and earth, the sea and the fountains of water.”

A good study is to look up all the verses on “fear” that you can.  Try to understand the difference between “fearing” God but nothing else.  What does it mean to fear God?

I think we need to come to a clear understanding about what it means to fear God, before we can really have an understanding about obeying him.  So the two are really tied together.

Simplicity of God

2 Kings 5:  Read the wonderful story of Naaman.  I think there are many applications to our lives and to thoughts on simplicity that God can show us through this story.

The story tells how Naaman had leprosy and went to the prophet Elisha to be healed of this disease.  But when Naaman arrived at Elisha’s house Elisha himself did not even come to greet him, but sent a messenger with the message, “Go and wash in the Jordan seven times and your flesh shall be restored and you shall be clean.”

That was very easy, but was Naaman excited?  We read, no way, he was angry.  That was in fact too simple.  He was angry because, “Behold I thought that he would surely come out to me and stand and call on the name of the Lord his God, and wave his hand over the place, and cure the leper.”  He thought he had better rivers at home than the Jordan that he could have washed in if that was the cure.

But then his servant came to him and said. “My father, if the prophet had commanded you to do some great thing, would you not have done it?  How much rather, then, when he says to you, wash and be clean?”

So, apparently Naaman reconsiders and does what Elisha had told him to do, and his flesh was restored and he was healed.

I think this is such a wonderful story of the simplicity of God.  All through the Bible, New and Old Testament this theme is carried through.

How can this apply to your own life.  Think about this story when you are pondering and memorizing the verses we have had in class each week.  It is too simple to take them at face value.  Would you be more willing to DO them if they were just a bit more complicated.  Perhaps not so “childlike”.  We are told to be “childlike” not childish.  There is a big difference.

Matt 18:3 “Truly I say to you, unless you turn and become LIKE children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.”

Think about this and also these other thoughts and verses that stress the simplicity of God.

The world wants a show of power, and might and wealth but God wants to do things the opposite in a simple childlike manner.

The Jews were looking for a king to come in power and glory but God sent the Messiah to a virgin and he was born in a stable.

When the angels announced his birth they did not do it to the rulers of the land but to the shepherds on a hillside.

Psalm 119:130 “The unfolding of thy words gives light; it imparts understanding to the simple.”

I love the words in 1 Cor 1:19-31.  Read it, it says it all as to God’s feeling of simplicity verses the wisdom of the world.


Daddy’s Dreams

August 12th, 2008

Dear Children and older grands,

Becky and Jim were here the other evening and we were talking about people having dreams from the Lord.  I then told Becky about Grandpa Martenson having dreams from the Lord and she said I had never told her.  You know how I am always asking, “Have I told you this a million times?”.  Well apparently I hadn’t told her and maybe hadn’t told the rest of you, so I thought this might be a good time.  August is the month of Grandpa’s birthday, Aug 23rd.  This year he would have been 104.  I loved him so much and I think of him each day as I see various pictures around here of him.  But back to his dreams.

One time I asked him why he married Grandma Martenson.  He said the Lord gave him a dream three times in a row that he was to marry her.  He told me he knew dreams were from the Lord when he had them three times.  He also said, “If I hadn’t married her there would be no Rosy, Becky, Cindy, Jane, Bart or Pollyann.”  Oh, my what a sacrifice he made for us all to be alive and have the genes we do.  We know it was not a happy marriage.

When I was about 11 years old he gave me a poem book entitled, “One Hundred and One Famous Poems”.  Oh, I loved that book, and read and reread those poems.  It was strange I was reading that poetry book, when perhaps I should have been reading “Anne of Green Gables”.  But I loved it so much and became acquainted with famous people of poetry.

Well, about one year before my daddy died he told me of some other dreams he had had.  He said he knew they were of the Lord because they came 3 times.

He said the first night he dreamed he was near the water on a cove, and a big sailing vessel was coming into the harbor.  He said the first night he could only see the first words on the bow of the ship.  It said “THAN”.

Then he said the second night the same ship came in.  It was foggy but as the fog lifted he saw the words on the front of the ship, “THANATOP”.

Then the third night the same dream came but when the ship came in he read the whole name, “THANATOPSIS”.  He said he didn’t know what the name meant.

But I did and I was afraid to tell him.  I just told him it was the name of a poem.  It was in my precious book of poems and was written by William Cullen Bryant.  It is a poem about “death”.  I don’t know if I ever told him or read it to him and I still don’t know if the poem was for him, or to prepare me.

But it pierced my heart as perhaps nothing has since.

I guess I just wanted to tell you all.

Love you all, Mom/Gr. Rosy

Verses that go with “Overcommitment” Lesson

Pro 20:27 (Living)  “A man’s conscience is the Lord’s searchlight, exposing his hidden motives.”

Gal 5:25 (Living)  “If we are living now by the Holy Spirit’s power, let us follow the Holy Spirit’s leading in every part of our lives.”

Gal 5:16 (Living)  “I advise you to obey only the Holy Spirit’s instruction.  He will tell you where to go and what to do and then you won’t always be doing the wrong things your evil nature wants you to do.” (also read 17-22)

Isaiah 30:21  “And your ears shall hear a word behind you saying, ‘This is the way, walk in it’, when you turn to the right and when you turn to the left.”

John 10:27  “My sheep hear my voice and I know them and they follow me.”

John 10:4  “When he has brought out all his own, he goes before them and the sheep follow him for they know his voice.”

John 8:47  “He who is of God hears the words of God, the reason why you do not hear them is that you are not of God.”

Rom 8:14  “For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.”

Isaiah 48:17  “…I am the Lord your God, who teaches you to profit, who leads you in the way you SHOULD go.”

OK so we LISTEN to the Lord, feel we are hearing his voice and try to do what he is directing.  And then things seem to fall apart or not go in the way we hoped.  This is a good verse to remember at those times.


As We Turn Our Thoughts To The New Year


Phil 3:13-14 RSV  “Brethren, I do not consider that I have made it my own; but one thing I do, forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”

Same verse in Living Translation.  “No dear brothers, I am still not all I should be but I am bringing all my energies to bear in this one thing, forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I strain to reach the end of the race and receive the prize for which God is calling us up to heaven because of what Christ Jesus did for us.”


Matt 6:34  “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself.  Let the day’s own trouble be sufficient for the day.”


Isaiah 26:3-4  “Thou dost keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on thee, because he trusts in thee.  Trust in the Lord for ever for the Lord God is an everlasting rock.”

What a wonderful promise to take with us into the new year.  That Jesus is our rock, in whom we can hide, who will protect us and in whom we can take refuge.

Psalm 92:15b  “…he is my rock”

1Sam 2:2b  “…there is no rock like our God.”

Psalm 18:2  “The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge…”

Psalm 71:3  “Be thou to me a rock of refuge, a strong fortress, to save me, for thou art my rock and my fortress.”

Finding the Hidden Jewels of Christmas

The first jewel is the PEARL OF GREAT PRICE – Jesus.

Matthew 13:45-46 “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls, who on finding one pearls of great value went and sold all that he has and bought it.”

The second jewel is the SAPPHIRE

James 1:5 “If any of you lack wisdom let him ask God, who gives to all men (and women) generously and without reproaching, and it will be given to him.”

Oh, do women need wisdom during the Christmas season. So many decisions to make – so many people to TRY and keep happy.

Ecclesiastes 3:1 “For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven.”

Young Mamas – This is a time to make traditions

Mama-in-laws – This is also a time to break traditions

But young mamas remember also that the way you treat your parents especially during this holiday time is the example you are setting for your children and the way they will treat you when you are a grandma.

The third is a BASKET OF JEWELS – The Fruit of the Spirit

Galatians 5:22-23 “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control…”

Don’t give up the Fruit of the Spirit for the Fruit of your Labors.

For the Following:

The most beautifully decorated house

Magnificent outdoor Lights

Hand made gifts for many

All kinds of baking

All uniquely wrapped gifts

Beautiful Christmas tree

Friends for dinner

The special day planned perfectly!!

Have we given up the Fruit of the Spirit and become:





Unkind – especially to those in our home.

Selfish – thinking of what WE desire for a perfect Christmas.

Unfaithful – to basic principals of our faith, in order to celebrate Jesus’s birth


Uncontrolled – with our credit card, our temper or our eating.

In John 10:10 Jesus said, “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” He did not say “He came” to make us a nervous wreck in December trying to celebrate his birth.

In Matthew 11:28-30 Jesus said some wonderful words, that I think can be especially meaningful for women during the Christmas holiday. “Come to me all who labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and lowly in heart and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

Is your burden heavy? Especially right now during these days before Christmas? If so, perhaps you are carrying more than Jesus would have you carry. Maybe some of that burden is of your own doing not his? If so, take him at his word and “Come to Him” and find rest for your souls. Don’t let the cares of the world, the delight in riches, and the desire for other things, enter in and choke the word, and it proves unfruitful. (Mark 4:19)

The last jewel I shall call a DIAMOND.

Our “diamond” can be found in Psalm 62: 5-6 “My soul, wait thou only upon God; for my expectation is from him.”

And it is to help us in “unfulfilled expectations”. Hidden deep in the Christmas story is a message to help us with this. Sometimes our life is not as we expected it would be:

My husband has faults I never saw before marriage.

Married life just isn’t what I dreamed as a child.

I thought children were a reward from the Lord, sometimes mine feel like a punishment.

I studied years to have this position job wise, and now it seems empty.

I had such a happy marriage and never expected to be a widow so young.

I thought the senior years were supposed to be ‘golden’. Mine aren’t, I don’t have enough money to travel and am lonely.

How can the Christmas story help us with these expectations? What did the Jews expect? They expected a King who would execute justice and righteousness in the land. The reality was a baby born in the manger.

They expected a King to deliver them from Roman rule. The reality was that Jesus came to deliver them from their sins.

What did Mary expect? A messiah, but not to be the mother of the Messiah.

Can we be like Mary and say, “For with God nothing is impossible.” Luke 1:37 and verse 38, “let it be according to your word.”

Can we believe the words also of Elizabeth in Luke 1:45, “And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her from the Lord.”

If you have found the Pearl of Great Price then you claim Romans 8:28 with assurance. “We know that in everything God works for good with those who love him, who are called according to his purpose.”

If you don’t know the ‘Pearl of Great Price’ you can be praying this simple prayer. If you do, this will be the most joyous Christmas you have ever experienced!

References to explain this: Romans 3:23-24, Romans 5:8-9, Romans 6:23, Romans 10:9-10, Romans 10:13, John 1:12, 1John 1:9, Isaiah 61:10


From Webster’ Dictionary: Contentment – Having the desires limited to that which one has.

Synonym: Satisfied – State of being content.

Let’s look at what the bible has to say about contentment.

Phil 4:11-13

Not that I complain of want, for I have learned , in whatever state I am, to be content. I know how to be abased and I know how to abound; in any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and want. I can do all things in him who strengthens me.”

Luke 3:14

Soldiers also asked him, ‘And we, what shall we do?’ And he said to them, ‘Rob no one by violence or by false accusation, AND BE CONTENT WITH YOUR WAGES.’”

Heb 13:5-6

Keep your life free from the love of money, and be content with what you have; for he has said, ‘I will never fail you nor forsake you.’ Hence we can confidently say, ‘The Lord is my helper, I will not be afraid; what can man do to me?’”

1Tim 6:6-12

There is great gain in GODLINESS WITH CONTENTMENT; for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world; but if we have food and clothing, with these we shall be content. But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and hurtful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is the root of all evils; it is through this craving that same have wandered away from the faith and pierced their hearts with many pangs. But as for you, man of God, shun all this; aim at righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness. Fight the good fight of faith; take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made the good confession in the presence of witnesses.”

vs. 17-19

As for the rich in this world, charge them not to be haughty, nor set their hopes on uncertain riches but on God who richly furnishes us with everything to enjoy. They are to do good, to be rich in good deeds, liberal and generous, thus laying up for themselves a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of the life which is life indeed.”

2 Cor 12:10

For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions and calamities; for when I am weak, then I am strong.”

Let’s look at each verse and share what it means to you and what practical application you get from each.

I shared the story of Sam and Bjorn and the little tractor with our envy lesson but I think it is appropriate also with contentment. We had been watching Sam while Cindy and John were away for a weekend. He had been with us two days when Bjorn came out to visit. Bjorn began riding the toy tractor. Thereupon Sam came in and said that Bjorn wouldn’t share. I told Sam that he had been here for two days and not even gotten on the tractor. Why did he now all of the sudden want to ride it so badly.

This is so true with children, but isn’t it also with us. Perhaps we never wanted a certain thing, but when our friend has it, or we see how beautiful something is in her house, we suddenly must have it.

Was this not the problem Eve had in the very beginning of the fall from grace. Read Gen 3:1-6. It seems that Eve really hadn’t thought about eating the fruit of the forbidden tree until Satan talked to her about not being able to have it. Then she SAW that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the EYES, and she TOOK the fruit and ATE some and then gave some to her husband. Isn’t that a progression of the way we are led from contentment also?

Something we must remember – We can drive envy and jealousy from our lives, hearts and minds, but then there is a void which must be filled with contentment – or envy and jealousy can easily return.

Sometimes we must take drastic measures to ensure contentment in our lives. I think Matt 18:7-9 gives us some thoughts to consider. “Woe to the world for temptations to sin! For it is necessary that temptations come, but woe to the man by whom the temptation comes! And if your hand or your foot causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it from you; it is better for you to enter life maimed or lame than with two hands or two feet to be thrown into the eternal fire. And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and throw it from you; it is better for you to enter life with one eye than with two eyes to be thrown into the hell of fire.”

How can we apply this in a practical way? If our feet causes us to walk into a bank and rob it or if our hands reach out to steal from others or if our eyes cause us to lust and pursue that feeling, it is better to be maimed and crippled and blind and not be able to do those things, rather than to be able to do them and be thrown into hell.

How can these drastic measures be applied to being content? If the mall is too much of a temptation for us. And we are not content when we see all the things that would be nice in our homes or in our closets, then it is better to not go to the mall, unless absolutely necessary. And then to pray before going and only buy the specific things you have on your list. Perhaps you will need to shop by mail and catalogs and such.

Maybe you can’t resist nurseries this time of year. Perhaps you will have to stay away if you go beyond your specified budget. [Editors Note: This made me smile for if anyone knew my Grandma Rosy personally would remember that nurseries and flowers were a weakness for her:)]

This principle could hold true for whatever it is that draws you away from contentment. You might have to stop doing some very innocent thing if it brings you into trouble.

What are some things you can think of in this line?

May we pray that the Lord will fill our lives with contentment, as wives, mothers, homemakers and whatever we are involved in whether it is outside or in the home.

May we learn how to experience Godliness with Contentment.

Husbands (Part Two)

I shall be talking about “Encouraging the Spiritual Growth of our Husbands.” I think we hear more about encouraging women who are married to unbelieving husbands. But I am going to start with talking about the woman married to a strong Christian husband.

Just as we know there are problems that come with poverty and problems that come with riches – just different types of problems- so it is being married to a strong Christian husband or a non-Christian husband. The woman married to a strong Christian man must face and deal with certain issues just the same as the woman married to a non-Christian husband.

I remember Robbie, a Young Life leader whom we loved very dearly and who was praying for a Christian husband. She finally married a Christian man and has been happily married for over 20 years. But I remember a statement she made when she was first married. She said, “I prayed for a Christian man – now what do I do with him?”

Perhaps a young woman dreams of marrying a Christian man – but one who works 9 to 5 and is home every evening, helping with the children and with whom she has long talks each evening by the fire.

But more often than not, the Christian man, especially one involved in a Christian ministry of some kind, is just as passionate or more so about his work, than the young executive trying to climb the corporate ladder.

More people are ‘needing’ him because he is able to help them.

He is often ‘in front’ of people more, open to sometimes embarrassing a shy wife.

We have been involved with Young Life in many various aspects over the years, and have seen the lives of wonderful godly men, who were doing great things for the Lord, fall apart as their marriage turned to shambles and their children turned away from God. Many times because daddy just wasn’t there. He was so busy meeting the needs of other people’s children and other families that his own were neglected.

I can’t believe this is God’s plan for those in ministry and service of any kind to the Lord. But it takes much wisdom and courage for these men to do all they feel they should in their ministry and all they should be as fathers and husbands.

I am including a quote from Dr. Dobson in answer to the question, “What has been your greatest challenge as a father? What did you learn from it?”

I certainly made my share of mistakes as a father. Like millions of other men of my era, I often had a tough time balancing the pressure of my profession with the needs of my family. Not that I ever became an ‘absentee father’, but I did struggle at times to be accessible as I should have been.”…..“My father, who always served as a beacon in dark times, saw what was happening to me and wrote a letter that was to change my life. First he congratulated me on my success, but then he warned that all the success in the world would not compensate if I failed at home. He reminded me that the only way to build their faith was to model it personally and then to stay on my knees in prayer. That couldn’t be done if I invested every resource in my profession. I have never forgotten that profound advice.”

There are many things we can learn from the story in 2 Samuel 6:12-23 in regard to our lesson on being married to a strong Christian man. The story is about Michal, married to a very strong man of God, King David.

Perhaps we can look at Michal’s behavior towards her husband in the same way we read the stories about the Bernstein Bears, and see some examples of how NOT to behave as a godly wife.

What can we learn from Michal’s mistakes? And what were her mistakes?

  1. She threw cold water on her husband’s service to God.

  2. She did not share in his joy.

  3. She stood on the side lines despising him, not encouraging him or worshipping with him.

  4. She thought he was a little too enthusiastic and a little fanatical about his religious business.

  5. She was embarrassed by his behavior. So certain he had made a fool of himself.

  6. She gave him much constructive criticism.

  7. She thought it her duty to straighten David out. Polish him up a bit abd make him a more proper person. (She didn’t stop to think that maybe God liked him that way)

  8. She didn’t allow David to share his joy with his family abd her sarcasm was a slap in his face.

  9. Verse 23 implies their marriage relationship fell apart or else was an answer from God.

What God is doing in your husband is a serious thing and not to be taken lightly. Do not judge the work of God in his life – support it.

Allow your husband to rejoice in the wife of his youth. Proverbs 5:18,19 “Let your fountain be blessed, and rejoice in the wife of your youth, a lovely hind, a graceful doe. Let her affection fill you at all times with delight, be infatuated always with her love.”

May we be the wives God would have us be, so that we can encourage our husbands to be all that God would have them be.

Husbands (Part One)

My teaching is based on Titus 2:3-5 and this is what verses 3 & 4 say:

Bid the older women likewise to be reverent in their behavior, not to be slanderers or slaves to drink; they are to teach what is good, and SO TRAIN the young women to love their husbands and children…”

Those very words seem to tell us that real life and marriage isn’t exactly like the fairy tales say, “They married and lived happily ever after”. No, in real life it takes hard work and relying on the Lord and the direction he gives us for marriage in his word.

2 Timothy 3:16-17 tells us how we are to receive this training. “All scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction AND FOR TRAINING in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete for every good work.”

What is the good work we are talking about here?

Loving husbands

Raising godly children

Being the heart of a warm, godly and loving home

I passed out some sheets that had words on them by Sharon Ries that were very important. [Editors Note: these words not included] By believing and putting this truth to practice you free yourself up to just love your husband. That truth is that your husband, Christian or non-Christian, cannot meet your deepest needs. Only Jesus can do that. Don’t expect that from him.

In one of Dr. Dobson’s monthly newsletters a question was asked, and the answer to that question ties in with the truth we just stated. “What do you consider to be THE greatest threat to the stability of families today?”

His answer:“It would be a phenomenon that every marriage counselor deals with regularly. The scenario involves a vulnerable woman who depends on her husband to meet her emotional needs and a workaholic man who has little time for family responsibilities. Year after year she reaches for him and finds he is not there. She nags, complains, cries and attacks him for his failures – to no avail. He is carrying the load of three men in his business or profession and can’t figure out how to keep that enterprise going while providing what his wife needs. As time goes by, she becomes increasingly angry, which drives him even further into his workday world. He is respected and successful there. And thereafter he is even less accessible to her. Then one day, to her husband’s shock, this woman reaches a breaking point and either leaves him for someone else or files for divorce. It is a decision she may live to regret and one that often devastates her children – although by then the marriage is long gone. It was such a preventable disaster, but one that thousands of other families will be victimized by in the coming months.”

I shall read out loud also a portion called “Expectations” from Ruth Bell Graham’s book Its My Turn.

By not laying heavy expectations on your husband you also free him up – to be a husband, father, and grandfather – who is “playful” and who can help build memories. It is a chain reaction when we do our job as the wives God intended us to be.”

As I first prepared this lesson years ago the ink ran out in my Word Processor. I put in a new cartridge and it still wouldn’t work. I tried and tried and finally put in another cartridge that I had on hand. It still wouldn’t work. I became very frustrated and finally thought of saying, “When all else fails read the instructions.” I did read them and it said to clean the new cartridge head when replacing it. I did that and it worked. It made me think of this lesson. For it is the same principal with husbands. I would hate for you to throw one away, get another one and it doesn’t work because you are not following the instructions. God gave us a plan and instructions as wives and it is found in His Word, our precious Holy Bible.

Every Christian woman wants to be married to a strong Christian man.

  1. Mature in his relationship with God

  2. Who leads the family in love for the Lord

  3. Has love for his church

But much of his spiritual growth depends upon his wife – part of what it means to be ‘one’ person.

Our attitudes, emotions, weaknesses and strengths affect our mates, as though they were their own. Many women work against the very goal they want.

We need to be aware of what builds up and what tears down a man’s relationship with God.

Don’t fall into the trap that Eve did. Her husband lost power because of his wife’s influence.