Don’t Give Up Because Of Lost Time

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There is something I have learned in the six months or so since returning to Celebrate Recovery…besides the fact that I still need it. Here it is…there are men and women, dads and moms that feel as if they have let their children down. And in a lot of ways.

And I am one of those dad’s. For years I felt that way, even when my wife and I were together.

For those who have followed my blog know that I love my kids and I cherish every moment I can get to spend time with them. Even if it’s just sitting in their Taekwondo school watching them practice.

You see, I get to be with them and they get to see me supporting them in their endevour to be the best they can be. I try my hardest to spend as much quality time with them as possible because I know that there are dads and moms out there that do not care about their kids. Or they can not be with their kids for whatever reason…though they love them dearly and want to be.

For some, it’s like once they get separated or divorced the children are no longer a concern and that is not how it should be. I have seen first-hand how it affects the children. I see the look on their faces and I can feel their sorrow and disappointment.

And I have been a child whose parent was present but not there.

And hearing stories from different people over the last several months about their addictions and what it has done to their children hurts me. Then there is that one question that always rears its head…how can I make it up to my son or my daughter. Or the statement…I have wasted so much precious time with my child being addicted, messed up and now by being away and getting sober.

Here is what I would tell these men and women…you can’t but you can start fresh.

I say that with somewhat restraint because I do know that you can make it up, but it is by being a different person than you were. You can not buy their trust back with trinkets. But you can “make it up” by being a better father or mother to your children. Stay sober, stay diligent, make Christ the focal point in your life and be there for you children.

Will they forget all the bad? No, probably not. But the new you, can be a game changer in their lives as they witness a rebirthing from who you used to be to who you are now. And to witness a parent change for the better is awesome.

As a parent spends more time with their children, that child will slowly forget some of the bad as the good new times starts to out weigh the old bad times.

You see, time spent is just that…it’s spent. You can’t get it back. That moment is gone forever and never to return.

And yet, that one thing that is so fleeting is the most valued commodity we can give our children…our time.

So, as a parent spend time with your children. Invest in their lives. Get to know your child. Their likes and dislikes. Get to know their heart. You may come to realize that their heart is just like yours was at that age and you will want to protect it.

And if we, regardless of circumstances, as parents continue to give our children our time and invest it into their lives we will see an impact for the good. We will see a harvest of good, as they in turn give their time and invest in others.

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Guys, Do Not Stop Showing Affection

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One of the things I have NEVER understood is how a man can go months without giving any attention and or affection to the woman he loves. I simple can not, for the life of me, grasp the concept of no attention to the one you love.

I don’t mean the unwanted attention like “Where is dinner?” or ” Why have you not done the dishes yet?” Or the coming home from work conversation, where you walk in, after the animals or kids have messed up everything right after she has already done the dishes, washed 10 loads of clothes, vacuumed and mopped the house and ask “What have you done all day?”

What I’m talking about is the praise of her beauty, the touch that says I missed you today, the hugs that say you are mine, the kisses that say I love you and yeah…the sex that says all the above and more.

Let me ask you a few questions real quick guys…

Could it be that you, as a child, never witnessed your dad giving positive attention and/or affection to your mom?

Could it be that now that you have “won” her, that you feel all the things you did to “win” her is no longer necessary?

Well, allow me to let you in on something. If you answered yes to any of those questions you need to rethink a few things.

Your dad may not have shown any positive attention/affection to your mom because he never saw it growing up either. But, that does not mean you have to or should follow after his footsteps. Because if you do, all you are basically doing is making the one you love feel completely alone, unimportant, uncherished and unloved.

You need to break that cycle from generations past and exhibit love. We all know that saying…actions speak louder than words.

If she asks you to hug her…then do it for crying out loud. That quick or long embrace can make all the difference in her world.

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Honestly guys, if she has to ask you to hug her…you’ve missed something that is vital to your relationship…knowing her. You should know when she needs a hug just by the look in her eyes or her body language. Just saying.

See, the thing is guys, you can say I love you all day long but they can become just words if there is no action behind them.

And that actually leads into the other question I posed…

Don’t let the things (actions) that you did to “win” her heart die. Continue to do them.

Continue taking her out on dates, holding hands, putting your arms around her and communicating. Continue telling her how beautiful she is and how much you appreciate all she does.

For you, that are doing those things that you did to win her heart, sometimes being spontaneous is a good thing! If you know she is in the tub give her a few minutes of quite time alone and then go in there, strip down and jump in the tub with her. Heck bathe her, wash her hair, dry her off, and lead her to the bedroom, lay her down, cover her up, kiss her goodnight, climb in bed with her with you expecting nothing more than wrapping your arms around the one you love.

Remember intimacy is not always sexual activity. It’s treating the one you love with respect, honor and yes…affection.

She is the love of your life. Treat her as such!

 

Look For The Knight With The Battle Worn Armor

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There are a few sayings that I totally disagree with. And here is one of them…

Your knight in shining armor will come one day and sweep you off your feet.

Let me say this right now…

I’ve always loved Disney movies. You know those enduring classics with the prince and or knight in shining armor that swoops in to save the princess from the villain or villainess and then they live happy ever after.

Those are great movies but they also give false ideals on what life is really like.

Here is why I say that…

A lot of young girls grow up believing that once they get married everything will be fine. They’ll get away from their parents(the villains) and be happy. No…they will not. Because they married for the wrong reason.

Maybe a young girl falls in “love” with the first boy that shows her attention. This is her knight, because he is giving her what she feels she needs…attention. But then later realizes that the attention given was a means to an end…to get…

I’ll let you fill in the rest of that sentence. And then she looks at all boys/men through a different lense.

Maybe a young college woman grows to love this young handsome, caring young man who sits next to her in class. They get engaged. They get married only to find out years down the road that he’s kept something hidden from her this whole time…an addiction that shakes her to the core of her very being.

I could go on and on with scenarios but you get the idea.

There is no knight in shining armor.

Yes, he may be awesome. He may be amazing, but if we are honest with ourselves then we know everyone has flaws. And if a man’s armor does not have battle dents he is no knight.

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A knight is someone who has been in the trenches fighting for his own life and has the scars to prove it. A knight is someone who is willing to go into battle for those he loves. A knight is someone with a battle plan.

A knight is someone who has lost battles and yet will get up, wipe the mud off and keep fighting.

A knight is not someone who comes in and sweeps you off your feet with false promises, but rather one that walks into your life humbly.

The knight you should look for is the one that hits his knees on a daily basis asking for guidance from the King.

The knight that prays with you as you battle life together.

The knight that stays awake after you go to bed to pray silently over you.

That knight who holds you with such tenderness and yet with such strength at the same time, because he knows that battles lay ahead that could test his very soul. That knight, who at that very moment, is drawing his strength from the one he is trying so valiantly to protect.

That knight is a man of courage. And yes, that type of man exists. I know, because I am one.

I have fought those battles. I have won many and lost just as many. And with each battle won or lost I got stronger and more prepared for the next one.

My armor is not shiny. It’s honestly beat to hell and back. And I would have it no other way.

I know the price that was paid for the priceless treasure I am fighting for.

So, look for a knight with worn and beaten armor. The knight that knows your value. The knight that doesn’t take you for granted. The knight that is not afraid to tell you his weaknesses. The knight that is not afraid to ask for you presence before his King on a daily basis for battle prep.

Ladies, go check out  When Grace Found Me and make sure to read this beautiful post of hers entitled Letter To My Future Husband.

The Journey…

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One of the things I always enjoyed growing up was looking for rocks. It didn’t matter where I was. If there were rocks, I was in the middle of them moving them around trying to find the one cool one, that looked different.

Sometimes I would look for ones that that had fossils in them. Sometimes I would look for ones that had been broken in half that looked like hearts. But a lot of the time I would simply try to find the smoothest one in the bunch.

I use to actually collected rocks as a kid. Tiger Eyes and Quartz were my favorites for the longest time. That is until my dad, on one of his trips to Arkansas, brought me back a rock that had crystals inside it. I still have that rock to this day. Here is what it looks like….

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But the coolest thing I learned about rocks is how they go from being jagged to smooth. It’s the process that fascinated me. And it is a long process.

As I’ve grown in my walk with the Lord, I’ve come to realize how much my fascination with rocks parallels my walk with Him.

Let me see if I can explain it properly….

The rocks that we see all over the place are actually remnants of a much larger rock formation that was eroded away by wind and rain over time. That was the beginning of a very long journey.

This is how we are when we accept Christ into our lives. We are seperated from the bigger formation…the world.

Our journey, truly begins at that moment. As we continue on our journey we are tossed around in what we call “storms”. That is where our jagged edges are worn away and become smooth.

Some of our storms are rough on us, like a rock being rolled around like crazy in a rushing river.

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And then at other times our storms are calm ones like that same rock that was rolled around like crazy but is now in a gentle flowing stream.

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And yet, even the gentle flow is removing the roughness as it washes over.

So, just as the rock, we are constantly being changed into a better and more unique version of ourselves.

What a journey life is!

 

Don’t Play The Blame Game

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Isn’t it interesting how since the very beginning of time we have been blaming others for our actions. Notice how Adam points the finger at God first, then Eve and then the sin.

K, granted Eve gave Adam the fruit to eat after listening the the ole serpent. But it doesn’t say Eve went and found Adam and gave him the fruit…he was right there beside her the whole time. Why didn’t Adam say Hey, hold up honey, God said don’t eat of this tree?

But instead, he made a choice to disobey God and eat the fruit. We all do that at some point in our lives. And we all point the blame at others, for the most part.

We will blame our parents, spouse or friends who may have introduced us to something that looked good. But that thing that looked so good, just like the fruit in Genesis, turned out to be poison to us spiritually, mentally and maybe physically.

I have been guilty of this myself.. trust me…

Here’s the point I want to make…stop playing the blame game.

Male or female, it doesn’t matter, if there are issues in your marriage, in your sex life, in your finances or life in general don’t be blaming others when you are probably just as much to blame as the one your trying to place blame upon.

And do not blame God, for just as He did with Adam He has done for us. We know the rules and guidelines, just as Adam did.

It’s up to us to follow them…