Archive for August, 2015

Authentic Love Story

August 27, 2015

Women love a good love story. That’s why we buy the romance novels and check out the latest “boy meets girl” movies. I’ve had the privilege of observing for more than 30 years an authentic love story. My sister-cousin Rhonda and her husband James celebrate 32 years of marriage today. They still have eyes only for each other. Their love is stronger today than when they said “I do.” It’s a joy to be around them. I see the tenderness, affection, and simple delight of them just being in each other’s presence. (I want a love like this!)

I’ve often thought why is their marriage so strong? Here’s my theory. Before they said I do to each other, they said I do to God. Before they met, each decided to make Jesus Lord of their lives. They decided to date and wait His Way. Both sought God in prayer about His choice for a marital partner. They were 100 percent confident that God led them to each other. James was a godly man and a man of the Word before he met Rhonda. He’s a godly man today. He’s on the road a lot for his job. Rhonda told me that not once has she questioned his fidelity or felt the need to sneak and check his cell phone or text messages. She can trust her husband because he fears and honors God. Rhonda was a godly woman before she met James. I greatly admire her sensitivity to the voice of the Lord and her willingness to obey Him no matter what. She told me once, “Every year I pray and ask the Lord what kind of wife do I need to be for my husband this year. Do I need to be more patient, more understanding? I’m open to the Lord’s leading.”

Like any couple they’ve had challenges, but Christ was always there to meet them at their point of need. He owns their hearts. By God’s grace, they raised two godly sons who are now happily married. They have a great example to follow.

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Diversion

August 16, 2015

I spent a good chunk of time last night checking flights for one of my brothers. His connecting flight was initially delayed due to weather conditions on the East Coast. It departed on time but then encountered a rainstorm in Charlotte. He was unable to deplane for what seemed like an hour. In the meantime, I kept checking the departure time for his next flight. It was delayed as well. Finally, when he was allowed to enter the terminal he had a few minutes to get to the next terminal to make his next flight. I thought he had a good chance. Then I got a phone call.

“Cheryl, you’ll never guess what happened.” I waited for the news. “I was so focused on getting home that I stopped at the ticket counter for the flight that would take me directly to Dayton, instead of to the ticket counter for my flight to Cincinnati. By the time I got to the correct gate, the door was closed. I missed my flight. Fortunately I was able to get a seat on the next flight out.” He would be getting home around midnight.

When we hung up the phone, this thought came immediately to mind: We exchanged so many phone calls and invested so much time, focused on 1 thing…his connecting flight to Cincinnati. His goal was to make that flight. And in just a matter of seconds, so close to the goal, he lost focus, his attention diverted to the wrong flight. The Lord spoke to my heart and said, “Cheryl, this is a constant battle and effective strategy of your chief adversary, the Devil…to have you focused on the things of God for the majority of your time, and then when it really counts and you are near the finish line, you divert your attention to something insignificant, that does not matter, and it causes you to lose your race.”

Let’s be ever vigilant and on guard daily. Let’s not be ignorant of Satan’s schemes and devices. Let’s stay focused on what really matters…running our race, reaching our finish line so our Master will say, “Well done, thy good and faithful servant.”