This was a beautiful chapter. It focuses completely on prayer. I am a big believer in prayer. It has worked for me many times in my life. I believe God hears every prayer I send his way. And I have learned that he answers it, not always the way I want, but in the way He knows is best. Prayer is the way I start and end my day. It is very important to me.
I can’t do this chapter justice by just doing my little cliff notes on it. If you have the book, really pay attention to every word in this chapter. I believe it holds the answers to every problem you have with your spouse. Let’s get started…
Beloved, I pray that in all respects you may prosper and be in good health, just as your soul prospers.
3 John 2
I figured this out a long time ago: “You cannot change your spouse.” MKB is strong-willed. He will not do what he does not want to do. I can’t change his mind once it is set. There is one incident in his life where people think I influenced his decision, but that just shows they don’t know MKB. He listens to no one. I gave up trying to mold him into what I wanted him to be a long time ago. That is not to say I have not been frustrated to no end with his stubbornness & WISH I could change him. At this point, Dr. Chapman says I need to just accept MKB as he is & start to become a “wise farmer”.
I need to plant a seed of love in fertile ground, just as a real farmer does. I need to nurture it & protect it from “weeds”. Then I need to give it to God. I need to pray that my seed will grow strong. Not every seed will grow, just like there is no guarantee that all these dares will change MKB. But I’m not doing these dares to change him. I’m doing them to change me. To return to the person I once was before life happened and I let it take over. I have seen the changes in myself. I’ve calmed down & regained my patience…well some of it. I’ve listened harder & spoke less. I’m feeling good about the efforts I’m putting into this. There are days when I don’t feel like continuing on, but I do it because I love MKB & I love our marriage.
But I can’t do this alone. I have known that from the beginning. I’m too weak. I give into old patterns the minute something goes wrong. But with prayer to God, I am given super natural strength to get back on track and change my old ways and keep trudging forward. Each day I am rewarded with the feeling of accomplishment.
“Do you feel like giving up on your marriage? Jesus said to pray instead of quitting”: Luke 18:1.
“Are you stressed out and worried? Prayer can bring peace to your storms”: Philippians 4:6-7
“Do you need a major breakthrough? Prayer can make the difference”: Acts 12:1-17
Humble your heart & just pray to God.
I LOVE this last part because it was a total lightbulb moment for me! “Have you ever wondered why God gives you overwhelming insight into your spouses’ hidden faults?” YES!! I do wonder why I can see all that is wrong with MKB & he doesn’t see any of it!!
“It is for effective kneeling.” When you nag, does anything change? No. Try turning that nagging into praying. Pray for exactly what your spouse needs, an open heart, a heart of forgiveness, a better attitude, etc. Praying a strategic prayer will accomplish more than constant nagging. Plus it’s a much more peaceful way to live. We’ve heard this before in a previous chapter. Remember I stated at the beginning of this journey that when God puts something in front of me over and over, He is telling me to sit up and pay attention! So I am listening!
Shoot the moon and “pray for your hearts desires – for love and honor to become the norm. Pray for romance and intimacy to go to a deeper level.” This is so exciting to me! I am going to start praying for these very things right now! Which brings us to…
Love Dare 16
Begin praying today for your spouse’s heart. Pray for three specific areas where you desire for God to work in your spouse’s life and in your marriage. I’m on it!
Blessings to you and your spouse. I pray you do this challenge and you have FAITH that God is listening and working for you both this very moment. Amen!
Til next time, kids…