On Monday, I posted about our fourth Festival of Marriage retreat that we attended this past weekend. In case you missed that post, you can access it here . Today, I wanted to share some more helpful info that we learned in hopes that it may be able to give you some insight as well. This section of info was shared with us by Dale and Jena Forehand, an incredible couple that heads up a marriage ministry called Stained Glass Ministries. Check them out if you get time.
You cannot be completed by your spouse.
Hear me again on this...No person, no thing, no relationship,and no profession will EVER complete you.
You see, originally, in the beginning when God created Adam and Eve and instituted marriage (which, by the way, was the first ever institution- it came before the institution of work or government and even before the church), it was a place of perfection, priority and partnership. But after the fall and when sin entered into our lives, it became a place of blame, shame and pain. Just like when Adam stood by and let Eve sin instead of standing in the gap for her and then was shamed and blamed her... we do the same thing in our marriages.
After the curse of sin, God gave women a huge propensity for pain both physically and emotionally. There is a purpose in that pain and it is to drive us towards Jesus. We have a deep need for Him in our souls (although many never realize it is Him that we are needing and they seek out other methods to try to meet this need).
To men, God brought work. Men's huge need is for significance and a drive to work and to achieve their purpose. The problem begins when we seek that significance and purpose outside of the will of God. You see, each of us were created for a purpose IN ADVANCE, a purpose that only we can fulfill, that we were God-designed to do. We need to go to God to figure out who we are and to have our emotional needs met by Him.
As women, we crave intimacy and we MUST find that intimacy and security in Christ. We must invest in spending time with Him so that He can fill us up. Our husband is never going to be able to meet all the needs that we have and we need to STOP looking for someone else to tell us who we are.
Stop looking for verification.
Stop looking for reasurrance.
Stop looking for compliments.
Stop performing for others.
(i am preaching to myself here. My toes were stepped on so hard with this workshop that they are bruised).
Ask God, 'Who do YOU say that I am?'
For men, you have got to seek your importance and significance in Christ. We look for this in our friendships, our achievements, our church roles, our occupations, but the ONLY place that will satisfy the question of your significance is Jesus Christ.
And friends, once we know WHO we are, it will determine what we will do.
Our identity cannot be from our job.
Our identity cannot be from our possessions.
Our identity cannot be from our friendships.
Our identity cannot be from religious activity.
Men are called to be champions and significant and warriors, but they can never be that until they find that in the only place that matters- in Christ. You see, you aren't something because of what you do, you are something because of what HE did for you.
Stop today, right now even, and begin asking God who you are. Ask Him who He made you to be. Search His word and begin writing down what He says is true about you. Once you begin figuring out who are you and what He has made you to be, ask Him what He is calling you to do.
Y'all, we were created for a purpose, and we were saved for a purpose. I don't want to miss that. I don't want you to miss it, either.
I'll be back later this weekend to share more from this awesome conference.
Here are a few more pictures:
|some of the crazy ladies I'm in life group|
|Travis Cottrell and his worship team|