Tamar’s 10 in ’15 Book Challenge – Tuesday’s with Morrie

Well, we’ve come to our first book in the 10 in ’15 Book Challenge! I have to tell you, I really had no idea what Tuesday’s with Morrie was even about until I snuggled up with it in the library reading chair. I cracked the cover the day after starting my new teaching job and found out that God had chosen for me to read this book about a teacher first! I shook my head and smiled, He never fails.

This book had me at hello! I was swept into Morrie’s world and I didn’t want to leave. He was the teacher I try to be. He taught the way I long to teach. He treated people the way I try to treat them. He is such a great role model for teachers and for people in general. His outlook on life is inspiring to say the least and this story of his march toward death’s doors is a MUST READ. I can see why so many people recommended it to me!

There is so much more that I’d love to share with you about the book, but I don’t want to spoil the journey for anyone who hasn’t taken it yet.

Now, if you recall, when I first announced this Book Challenge I told you that there would be a reward for everyone who participated. Today is when you get to participate! :D Simply leave a comment below letting me know that you read the book, feel free to comment on how you felt about it, or if it taught you anything. For everyone who participates this month you will receive the free e-book of the month TRUE INTIMACY! :D So comment below and I’ll email you a copy of your very own! :D

For everyone who reads all ten books with me and comments on each 10 in ’15 Book Challenge post at the end of each month will receive one SIGNED book of their choice from the “Books” tab on TamarKnochel.com for FREE! So keep reading my friends! Let’s grow together! :D

Categories: 10 in '15 Book Challenge, Writing Through the Bible in a Year | 1 Comment

Day 10: Finished


Numbers 35:9-36:13

The following is an excerpt from our book True Intimacy.

For the next month we will be posting a chapter a day for your reading (and marital) pleasure. However, if you would like to purchase an electronic or printed copy for yourself or someone else we would greatly appreciate your support! To go to the web page for more information click here.

Listen, O daughter, give attention and incline your ear: Forget your people and your father’s house; then the King will desire your beauty.  Because He is your Lord, bow down to Him.  … The King’s daughter is all glorious within; her clothing is interwoven with gold. Psalm 45:10, 11 & 13

 

I think that it is just in womanly nature to want to be seen as beautiful.  Don’t you think?  Ahhhhh, but to be seen as “all glorious within“, now THAT’S beauty!  A beauty that makes the KING desire us.  You see, Jesus sees us, sinful and broken, and beautiful just the way that we are.

The other day my 3-year old daughter was quiet, a little too quiet if you know what I mean.  When I found her, she was covered from head to toe in marker and was so proud of herself.  As I was cleaning her off I told her “Honey, God made your skin beautiful just the way it is.  It doesn’t need any decoration.”  As soon as the words were out of my mouth it was like God tapped me on the shoulder and put it all into perspective for me.  When God sees me putting on my make-up and nail polish He sees His daughter coloring on herself with “markers”.  I realized that a lot of times we see our bodies as a blank canvas.  But God sees them as a finished masterpiece, a true work of art; worthy of protecting and cherishing, with no need of further ornamentation.

Pascal once said “Man is so made that if he is told often enough that he is a fool he believes it.”4 As women, when we are told a hundred times a day by our commercials, that we’re not young enough: “here THIS makeup will make those wrinkles disappear”.  We’re not skinny enough: “buy this weight loss program and shed those holiday pounds”.  We’re not pretty enough: “buy this hair color – you’re worth it”.  All day long we hear the ways that we’re not enough this or enough that.  After awhile we start to believe it!  Then, when our husband comes home and tells us he’d like to have sex, we don’t feel good about ourselves and IF they’re lucky enough to get lucky, many times it’ll be with the lights off.  We have got to GET OVER IT!  We’ve got to stop listening to the advertisements and start listening to our husbands!  Listen to GOD!  Our real beauty lies in how HE sees us anyway.

For example: One weekend, while camping in Brown County State Park in Indiana I had been continually amazed by the scenic vistas.  All weekend long I desperately wanted to see a spectacular sunset that would color and tint the whole sky above an endless span of tree tops, rolling hills and valleys filled with trees while comfortably seated next to my wonderful husband.  *Romantic sigh*  It would’ve been amazing.  But, alas, the whole weekend I did not get to see that sunset.  However, as we were driving home on Sunday evening the sun began to set, and as it did the sky began to light with bright reds and blues and the clouds turned purple.  It was magnificent!  And although it wasn’t as impressive over the Indy skyline as it would have been over one of those vistas, I WAS sitting next to my wonderful husband watching the sunset after a great weekend together.  And then the beauty of it all hit me.  God still gave me my sunset!  And then I heard His voice, the one I love so much.  “I think YOU, Beloved, are more beautiful than anything you’ve seen this weekend.”  I, of course, started crying.  MORE beautiful than the most beautiful landscape I’ve ever seen?  Me?  “Yes my Beloved, you all are; My precious creations.”  Tears welled up in my eyes and a sob choked in my throat as I stared over my husband’s shoulder into the beautiful purple and blue fading sunset.  “Wow!  More beautiful than that?”  What better words can a very self-conscious woman hear than, “more beautiful than the most beautiful landscape or sunset you’ve ever seen!”  And YOU ARE too!  You are THE most beautiful piece in God’s creation collection.

In 2 Corinthians 12: 7-10 Paul writes about his struggles and imperfections, so to speak.  Because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, for this reason, to keep me from exalting myself, there was given me a thorn in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to torment me – to keep me from exalting myself!  Concerning this I implored the Lord three times that it might leave me.  And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.”  Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.  Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong. Paul sums it up perfectly doesn’t he?  It is through our weaknesses that God’s power is perfected!  Our strengths are our strengths and we very easily get caught giving ourselves credit for them.  But our weakness, now that’s a different story isn’t it!  It is through our weaknesses that God’s power working through us is the MOST evident!  Think about it, God chose a man with a stammer to be His spokesperson to all of Israel during the Exodus!  He chose a regular old girl to be the mother of Jesus Himself!  There was nothing impressive or special about her, she wasn’t even rich or anything!  The only thing it really says about Mary is that she was “Highly favored” by God and willing to be used by Him.  God takes ordinary people and does extraordinary things with them, through their weaknesses and willingness!

God is not all tied up about how perfect we already are, what He cares about the most is our imperfections, and how He can redeem them.  Take an opal for example.  I’ve always enjoyed the way that the rainbow sparkles through them; and I was amazed at what I found when I researched them a bit.  Opals are mainly made from silica, which is round in form.  As an opal is created over hundreds of years the little silica balls line up next to each other.  Since they’re round they can’t line up perfectly which creates gaps or “imperfections” between them.  When the light shines through these imperfections it creates that “fire”, or rainbow sparkle, in the opals like a prism.  The red color in an opal is created by the light reflecting through the largest imperfections in the silica formations. The funny thing is, the more red there is in an opal the more it is worth.  So in other words, the way opals are valued is by their imperfections rather than their perfection.  You see, to God, our value lies in our imperfections because it’s through our imperfection that His light shines through us and glitters like a rainbow!  Those things in our lives that the devil meant for harm, God rejoices over us when we repent of them and then uses them for His good purposes!  God works in you, and in doing so He makes you shine and glitter like the priceless jewel that you are; His most precious family jewel, His work of heart.

Christian’s comments:

 

Your wife is beautiful! I wouldn’t know personally, but if she wasn’t beautiful to you, I’m guessing you wouldn’t have married her.

Husbands, look at your wife. Go ahead, look away from this screen for a minute and look at her. I look at mine all the time. Look at her “imperfections”. They are what make her unique. Think back to Tamar’s example of the opal; the bigger the “imperfections”, the more valuable the stone. Another example is coins. If a coin is stamped incorrectly, its “imperfection” makes it more valuable.

You guys need to tell your wives that they are beautiful. Let them know that they are the beautiful jewels that they are. Tamar doesn’t wear makeup anymore. I think she is more beautiful without it and make it a point to tell her so every chance I get. You guys need to do the same (not my wife, but yours). Do it when she is at her most vulnerable, when she’s naked. It is when she’s naked, that all of her “imperfections” are on display. That’s when she needs to hear that you think she is “perfect”.

 

 

Categories: 365 Life, Numbers, Season 3, True Intimacy, Writing Through the Bible in a Year | Leave a comment

Day 9: Holy


Numbers 32:1-35:8

The following is an excerpt from our book True Intimacy.

For the next month we will be posting a chapter a day for your reading (and marital) pleasure. However, if you would like to purchase an electronic or printed copy for yourself or someone else we would greatly appreciate your support! To go to the web page for more information click here.

What agreement has the temple of God with idols?  For we are the temple of the living God; just as God said, “I will dwell in them and walk among them; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people.  Therefore, come out from their midst and be separate,” says the Lord.  “And do not touch what is unclean; and I will welcome you.” 2 Corinthians 6:16-17

 

In the bible the books are divided into 2 sections: The Old Testament, (books written before Christ was born) and the New Testament (books written after Christ was born).  In these 2 sections God’s priorities for His people’s lives shift inward.  The Old Testament is filled with stories of miraculous events, most of which are very large-scale and grand.  Showing us how BIG God is and what He is capable of.  Then Jesus comes along and the miracles of the New Testament are more personal, they are intimate.  The majority of the miracles described in the New Testament are miracles of people set free from bondage of one form or another.  Miracles of debilitating illnesses healed, evil spirits cast out, and sins forgiven.  The life of the afflicted individual changed FOREVER.  God’s involvement in His people’s lives gets much more intimate as you segue from the Old Testament to the New Testament.

This intimate involvement is proved very precisely by what happened to a curtain in the temple on the day Jesus died.  Up until that moment God’s presence filled a room in the temple known as the Holy of Holies.  As a shield to that room there was a curtain.  No one was allowed behind that curtain.  Only after many ceremonies and ritual cleansings was the high priest even allowed behind it and that was only once a year! Since the presence of the LORD God filled that room behind the curtain, for anyone to enter His presence unprepared would have killed them.

According to Mark’s gospel, at the moment of Jesus’ death the curtain that separated God from the rest of the world was torn in two.  God had made a way for EVERYONE to come to Him and NOT die instantly.  Up to that point in history very few people knew what God’s voice actually sounded like.  Only a handful of them had ever talked to Him in person.  When Jesus died He made a way for us enter the Holy of Holies without fear of death.  Because of Jesus and His willing sacrifice we can go to God on a PERSONAL level.  He is no longer this BIG unapproachable God, He is intimate and loving and wonderful and caring.  He always was before but He couldn’t fully show us Himself in such an intimate way.  If someone needed to ask for forgiveness they had to go to the priests in the temple and offer an animal sacrifice.  They performed the rituals required of them and they left.  The priests would accept the sacrifices on behalf of the Lord.  The individual that had sinned would never be able to enter into the Lord’s presence to ask for forgiveness personally.

When you choose to accept Jesus’ sacrifice of love, the gift of salvation, you get to cut out the middle man!  God goes from being an unapproachable God living in a box in a temple to taking up residence in your heart; YOU become the Holy of Holies, your body!  Yes, really!  He lives in you and through you every day.  When you choose to accept Jesus for who He says that He is, you are choosing to live a life that will honor
Him.  In essence you are choosing to no longer make the sinful choices that you made in the past and instead strive to make choices that Jesus Himself would make.

Be a good person.  Build your knowledge of who Jesus is.  Exhibit self-control (especially right now since you’re supposed to be fasting from ALL sexual activity).  Persevere, life is hard.  But fear not for Jesus has conquered this life, and so can we, through Him.  Be a godly person, not just a good person.  Brotherly kindness, as a child of God every human alive is a brother or sister, treat them that way.  Be kind to the people around you.  Love.  Love everyone like He loves us, yes it’s hard, but it’s worth it.  We don’t deserve the love that He’s given us, so let’s pass some of that underserved love on to someone else today.  Maybe even your husband.

Christian’s comments:

 

Your body is the new temple. So husbands, build a nice temple. I’m not talking about the outside. It doesn’t matter what kind of shape you’re in (like the old saying goes, “Round is a shape”), it matters what kind of shape the inside is in. However, you should take care of yourself so your wife can enjoy you longer.

It doesn’t matter how nice a church, temple, or tabernacle is they are just buildings. They could be an old house, an office building, a shed, or even just a tent. What makes them holy places is the presence of the Holy Spirit.  Obviously, He isn’t always going to be a fog or a wind, but He is there.

I’ve been in churches where you can feel the Holy Spirit as a slight tickle on your body. I’ve been in churches where the Holy Spirit makes the hair on your body stand on end. I’ve been in churches where you could feel the Holy Spirit flowing out of the building when you open the door, as if the building can’t contain Him. Your temple (body) should be like my last example. The Holy Spirit should fill you so much that you can’t hold Him in and you just have to share Him with those around you.

Now, with that said, you need to lead by example. You can’t spread the Holy Spirit effectively if you don’t follow the steps Tamar listed above. You must live your life with as little sin as possible. Notice I didn’t say “with no sin.” It is impossible to live a completely sinless life. All we can do is make the choices needed to avoid as much sin as we can. That might mean avoiding web sites that might contain questionable photos. It might also mean not hanging around people who don’t lead a good example, tempting you to not lead by a good example. It might also mean changing your vocabulary if you “swear like a sailor”.

Will it be hard to change some of these things? Yes it will. But you know what, life’s hard, get a helmet.

Categories: 365 Life, Numbers, Season 3, Writing Through the Bible in a Year | 2 Comments

Day 8: Sacrifice


Numbers 28:16-31:54

The following is an excerpt from our book True Intimacy.

For the next month we will be posting a chapter a day for your reading (and marital) pleasure. However, if you would like to purchase an electronic or printed copy for yourself or someone else we would greatly appreciate your support! To go to the web page for more information click here.

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.  For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him.  He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. John 3:16-18

 

When we love someone it requires personal sacrifice.  Sometimes it’s with a simple compromise: I want Chinese for dinner and Christian wants Mexican so I sacrifice my desire for Chinese because I love him.  At other times though, to prove our love to one another, it takes something a little more drastic.

After 5 ½ years of dating, I started having doubts about my future with Christian.  Since he was the only man I’d ever been with, I was starting to feel like I had missed something.  So one night I asked him to come over to talk, because I was planning on breaking up with him.  After many hours of tears and talking, I was ready to leave him.  I had given him my engagement ring back and everything.  But he wasn’t going to let that happen.  He asked if I was willing to take a walk with him and I said “sure”, despite the fact that you could see our breath as we walked.  When we got to the fountain at the center of campus I asked Christian why he was so disappointed that the fountain was off and he replied, “I was going to run through it to prove my love to you.”  Christian was willing to sacrifice his health and his comfort to prove to me how much he loved me; because love requires sacrifices, sometimes big ones.  The ultimate and perfect love of God for us, required the ultimate and perfect sacrifice of Jesus, for us.

Jesus – though He had done nothing sinful or against the law in His entire life – was betrayed by one of His closest friends, arrested, and secretly whisked off to an immediate trial in the dead of night.  The Sanhedrin found Him guilty and sentenced Him to be flogged, and die by Crucifixion.  Once sentenced, He had one chance to “get out of it” so to speak. At that time, it was the festival of Passover and during the festival it was customary for one prisoner to be released.  They were given their choice between the Savior of their souls and a murderer for a rebellion against Rome.  The Jews chose to release Barabbas the murderer (which is how it had to be for God’s plan of redemption to work).  Jesus heard His friends and neighbors chanting “Crucify him, Crucify him, Crucify him”.

The book of Matthew tells us that Pilate released Barabbas, had Jesus flogged and then handed Him over to be crucified.  Usually when retelling the story of Jesus’ sacrifice we focus on the crucifixion, skipping the fact that He was flogged – or brutally tortured – first.  Flogging is where they whip your torso and your back.  But it’s not just a simple whip like a horse whip, its long leather straps with fish hooks and metal shards woven within them so as to inflict the maximum amount of pain possible without actually killing the person.  Most times after being flogged the skin would be hanging open, the victim’s bones, muscle and internal organs completely exposed.  It is one short sentence in the scriptures, but it was not a short sentence for Jesus.  It was long and painful, and only the beginning.  Next, He endured more pain and humiliation as the soldiers dressed him in a “royal” robe and placed a crown of thorns on his head.  Beating it into His head with a reed while spitting on Him and mocking Him.  Once the soldiers were satisfied with this utter humiliation they took His robe, put His clothes back on Him and led Him out to be crucified.  By custom, crucifixion victims were forced to carry the 75-100 pound cross-member of their own cross for roughly 1/3 of a mile.  In John it says that Jesus carried this Himself, but in the other gospels it says that Simon, a Cyrenian, carried it for Him.  It is very likely that Jesus started out the journey carrying His own cross; however after being awake all night long, beaten, bruised flogged, beaten more and humiliated, He lost His strength quickly and couldn’t carry it any further, requiring the assistance of Simon.  Once He reached Golgotha He was placed on top of His cross where they drove spikes between the bones of His wrists and the heels of His feet.  Not the small wood nails we’re used to seeing in the hardware store but spikes, large metal spikes.  He was lifted into place on the cross, hung at 9 in the morning according to Mark’s gospel.  He was placed between two criminals, equating Him with criminals; something He was not.  As people walked by Him on the road they mocked, “He saved others; He cannot save Himself.  He is the King of Israel; let Him now come down from the cross, and we will believe in Him.  HE TRUSTS IN GOD; LET GOD RESCUE Him now, IF HE DELIEGHTS IN HIM; for He said, “I am the Son of God.”  The robbers who had been crucified with Him were also insulting Him with the same words. (Matthew 27:42-44)  But that’s just it.  He COULD have saved Himself!  Just one word and He could have sent 10,000 angels to free Him from this pain and absolute humiliation but He didn’t say a word.  He endured every bit of it.  Just for you and me.  He hung on that cross, blood and life slowly draining from Him, excruciating pain and humiliation, His lungs filling with blood making it more and more difficult to breathe, slowly dying for SIX HOURS.  Luke tells us that for the final 3 hours of His torture it was dark.  Finally at 3 He cried out “It is finished” and died.  That, my sister, is part of the punishment that you and I deserve for our sins, and yet we will never receive that punishment… because Jesus took it all for us.  After watching the Passion of Christ I asked, “Why God, why would you do that for me?  Me?”  He replied, “Because my Beloved, that’s just how much I love you!  I love you so much I would rather die than live without you!”

Sigh…

Christian was willing to be cold and wet and sick for me, which was very romantic.  Christ was willing to be tortured and died for me.  So who loves me more?  There is NO possible way that Christian who is human can love me as much as Christ who was completely human and completely God.  Christ had a choice; He didn’t HAVE to do it.  He didn’t have to suffer the humiliation and the pain, yet He CHOSE to go through that so that we could live with Him forever!  The ultimate love required the ultimate sacrifice to prove that love, and it DID prove it!  When we ask Jesus how much He loves us, He says “This much” and spreads out His arms, reminding us of how He died for us.  He… chose… YOU.  He loves you that much.  He died and endured things that no one, human OR God should ever have to endure, and He did it to prove to you how much He loves you.  Love.  That’s what it’s all about, LOVE.

First, we are to love God with our entire self, more than everything else in our life.  Then, we are to love our neighbors more than ourselves.  This is especially important in marriage because it’s your love for God and your husband that is the greatest testimony to the people around you.  Your husband is your very own personal gift from God himself, show your husband you really love him, even when it’s hard and you really don’t feel like it.  If you claim that you love God, but complain constantly about your husband you are not showing him or the people around you the kind of love that God gives.  No matter what we’re doing or what our attitudes are like, God still loves us deeply and continues to show us all the time.  When we are being our most difficult, He still loves us; because He knows that that’s when we need His love the most.

Christian’s comments:

 

We have all had to sacrifice things before. But no one has ever sacrificed like Jesus did. He sacrificed His life; AND He did it VOLUNTARILY! Do you know why? Because He loves you that much. If you love your wife, you are going to have to make some sacrifices. You can’t just expect her to make them all.

Categories: 365 Life, Numbers, Season 3, Writing Through the Bible in a Year | Leave a comment

Day 7: Princess


Numbers 25:1-28:15

The following is an excerpt from our book True Intimacy.

For the next month we will be posting a chapter a day for your reading (and marital) pleasure. However, if you would like to purchase an electronic or printed copy for yourself or someone else we would greatly appreciate your support! To go to the web page for more information click here.

And on His robe and on His thigh He has a name written, “KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS”.  Revelation 19:16

 

God is the King, and not just any king; He is the King of all kings.  He is the Lord over all other lords.  He is the ruler of everyone and everything.  Boy it feels so good to say that!!!  You know why?  Because just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him.  In love He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will.  (Ephesians 1:4-5 emphasis mine)  WE are the siblings of Christ!  WE are the sons and daughters of God Almighty!  WE are in God’s royal family.  You are His daughter, His baby girl.  Now stay with me here, if God is THE King of kings and we are His children (Rom 8:14 & 16 and Gal 3:26-29), then we are princesses!

Oh, but wait, it gets even better!  As God’s children we receive royal benefits as well!  In Matthew 7: 9-11 it says what man is there among you who, when his son asks for a loaf, will give him a stone?  Or if he asks for a fish, he will not give him a snake, will he?  If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give what is good to those who ask Him! If we love and cherish our own children and want to give them good things, then how much more does God our Father want to give good things to us!?!  He loves us so much more than we could ever comprehend; of course He wants good things for us!

1 John 3:1 tells of how God LAVISHES his love on us, His children.  When was the last time you had human love lavished on you?  How great was it?  Now think about all the times in your life you’ve felt really loved, all those times it was God using that person’s arms to hug you, their voice to encourage you and make you laugh.  But that’s not even the best part of being His child.  The best part is how it makes you valuable.  Here’s a little bit from one of my journal entries:

“Oh the changes He’s made!  I wonder if He lets us screw up when we’re young so that He can show off by fixing us as we get older.  I had no idea I was so broken.  I thought my worth was in my body and my sex appeal, no, not ALL my worth, but the majority of it.  Through this journey (of the sex fast and writing this book) I’ve discovered my TRUE worth and value and that I’ve been bought with an un-payable price.  I’m more than priceless, I’m Christ’s.  By attaching myself to HIM my value becomes more than who I am or what I do or wear.  It’s who I’m with.  I am the LORD’S and He is mine.  My value comes from Him and the fact that I am His child.  My children are priceless to me because they are mine.  I am priceless to Him because I am His child.  I have an “all access pass” because “I’m with Him”.  I’m with Christ!  With Christ, all things are possible; including turning a stay at home mom into a princess and a mechanic into a prince charming; completely sweeping me off my feet, in every sense of the word.  Thank you Lord!  Praise be to You alone!  You did all this.  Thank you for being in the heart-changing business!”

Christian’s comments:

 

Husband, your wife is a daughter of God. God is THE King of kings. So that makes your wife a princess and she should be treated as such. If you start treating her as a princess, she is most likely to reciprocate that back to you. If you want to be treated as royalty, you first need to treat her as royalty.

A side note to the wives. Your confidence in yourself is one of the most appealing aspects about you. If you show off your confidence and royalty (remember not stuck up and snotty, precious royalty), your husband will have no problems treating you as royalty.

Tamar used to wear somewhat baggy clothes to kind of hide her curves. Recently, since our first fast, she has started wearing clothes that fit her well. They show off her curves (which are very sexy) without being revealing. She has confidence in herself so she doesn’t feel like she needs to hide anymore. And believe me, I complement her every chance I get.

Categories: 365 Life, Numbers, Season 3, Writing Through the Bible in a Year | Leave a comment

Day 6: Call me


Numbers 22:1-24:25

The following is an excerpt from our book True Intimacy.

For the next month we will be posting a chapter a day for your reading (and marital) pleasure. However, if you would like to purchase an electronic or printed copy for yourself or someone else we would greatly appreciate your support! To go to the web page for more information click here.

“Call to Me and I will answer you, and I will tell you great and mighty things, which you do not know.”  Jeremiah 33:3

 

Call to Me and I will answer you.  You know, when you think about it, that is a really remarkable thing!  The creator of the UNIVERSE is promising that if you call to Him, He WILL answer you!  Oh, but wait, there’s MORE!  He’s not just promising to answer you, Oh no, He is also promising that if you call NOW, you’ll not only receive an answer, but He’ll throw in – at no extra cost – great AND mighty things, which you do not know.  So ACT NOW AND CALL!  But don’t call on just anyone, no, call on the One who REALLY cares for you.

It was through calling to God and learning as much as I possibly could about HIM, that I found the love I’d been longing for my whole life.  You see, according to 1 John 4:8 God is the definition of love.  I have discovered that until I really knew that love, His love, I couldn’t really give that love.   You simply can’t give what you don’t have.  I learned that I needed to fall in love with God first.  When I fell in love with God – something amazing happened – I began to fall even deeper in love with Christian!  And that, has transformed us both.  Psalm 147:3 says “[The Lord] heals the broken hearted and binds up their wounds.” HE healed our broken hearts and HE healed our marriage.  And if HE can do that for us then HE can heal you too.  HE can; no one else.  Jesus is the ONLY way.

You see, Jesus is the only way to the Father, and in my opinion the only real way to solve ANYTHING that you are facing in life as well.  Jesus tells us in John 10:10 that He has come so that we may have a super-abundant life.  Jesus didn’t come so that we could just simply survive here on earth and then live in heaven with Him.  No!  Jesus came so that we could surpass surviving and LIVE our lives with a FULLNESS that we can only achieve through His power.  “How do I do that?” you ask?  You call to Him.  Life is filled with hardship, it just is.  And when I’m going through a really hard time, I know that God is there, waiting to help me.  Even if it doesn’t always feel like it, He’s there; with His arms open wide, ready to hold me.  Love me.  Comfort me.  He’s there; ready to listen to everything I have to say.  He’s there; ready to catch all my frustrations when I throw them His way.  He’s God, He can handle them.  I… can’t.  In those times when I just can’t take it anymore He reminds me WHOSE I really am.  I am HIS CHILD, His Precious Baby Girl.  When my own baby girl is hurt or sad, I rush to comfort her, to soothe her, to make the hurt go away.  When she was tiny I used to marvel at how I could sit with her on my lap and if she tucked her knees up close to her chest I could wrap my arms around her and lean over her in a way that my body would completely cover her, protecting her, taking away the hurt.  For a child there is little more soothing than climbing into a parent’s lap and being wrapped up in their loving embrace.

Last night God woke me up in the stillness of the night to give me some extra TLC during a particularly difficult week.  I followed His lead out to our living room where I wrapped up in a blanket and sat down in our big comfy red recliner.  As I sat there with my feet tucked up under the blanket warm & cozy & still, I realized what God had done.  Amidst this amazingly challenging and difficult time, He drew me away from all the noise and chaos, into the stillness and quiet of the night to spend some time on His lap (symbolized by the chair) wrapped up in His loving arms (symbolized by the blanket) to just snuggle and talk.  I sure do love my Daddy!  I can’t begin to explain to you how delicious it was to come to Him, curl up in His lap and relax with my head against His chest.  Casting myself and all my burdens at Him knowing full well that in that moment He was tenderly holding me in His arms and cooing to me “Oh my Beloved, all is well, tell me about it.”  He soothed me, and rocked away all the pain, and worry, and anger, and whatever else was bothering me.  I called to Him and told Him all about it, and He took it ALL away.  (Not necessarily the situation as much as my emotions and feelings about the situation.)  And when I was done spilling my guts to Him, I felt like a completely different person… because I was!

So, now the question is, do you believe that He’s there for you? Listening to you?  Are you willing to crawl up into His lap, snuggle into His chest, and let Him completely encircle you with His arms?  If you are, while you’re up there, you’ll be close enough to hear His heartbeat, and touch His face.  Then, in that moment, you will really be resting in the Lord and placing your faith in Him to do the things that He has promised to do.  Then, you will truly know that He is real.

Today, make some time, I recommend a lot of it, to crawl into YOUR Father’s lap.  Find a quiet private spot, preferably with a big comfy chair and a warm blanket, to pour your worries out at His feet like a drink offering onto the ground never to be returned to you.  We all have problems; more numerous than we can count. So, start by telling Him all about them!  Pour your heart out to Him, tell Him what hurts and why.  Let Him pour out His soothing balm onto your soul, let Him heal your broken heart and mend your aching Spirit.  Cry out to Him and let Him tell you great and mighty things!  When you reach out to Him and truly trust Him completely, you will soar on eagles’ wings.  You’ll start to see His face all around you; and experience the thrill of miracles, real miracles, in your life.  Trust God, who better to lean on and give you rest than the comforter and creator of love Himself.  Find rest in His arms, there is such a peace there because He is love… and all that love can be directed straight at YOU.

Christian’s comments:

 

In Jeremiah 33:3 God promises that when we call to Him, He will answer us.  He does not, however, promise that the answer will be immediate, or that it will be “yes”, but He promises to answer.  And He does, every time, with the answer that we need; not necessarily the answer that we want.  Sometimes “No” is the best answer we can get. We may not want to hear it, but His answer is ALWAYS the correct one.  As a parent, you know this to be true.  Your kids can not have everything they want, so you have to tell them “No”. If you don’t have children, think back to when you were a kid. Try to remember when your parents told you “No”. You were probably upset by it; but as you think back about it, you (hopefully) realize that “No” was the correct answer.  The reason we tell our children “No” is because we love them, and we want what’s best for them. We are all God’s children, and He loves us, and wants what’s best for us. That is why He tells us “No” sometimes.

As far as letting things go to Him, I still have trouble with it. I hold on to things. I have to really concentrate on giving it to Him. But Tamar is correct, when I do give everything to Him, I feel SO much better. I challenge you to do the same thing. It may feel strange, or difficult to you, but try it out. Find a quit place, and just pour your heart out to Him.

Categories: 365 Life, Numbers, Season 3, Writing Through the Bible in a Year | Leave a comment

Day 5: Memorize


Numbers 19:1-21:35

The following is an excerpt from our book True Intimacy.

For the next month we will be posting a chapter a day for your reading (and marital) pleasure. However, if you would like to purchase an electronic or printed copy for yourself or someone else we would greatly appreciate your support! To go to the web page for more information click here.

____________________________-

I discipline my body and make it my slave, so that, after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified. 1 Corinthians 9:27

 

For today, there is no reading other than your Bible.  Take the time you would normally spend reading and spend it instead, memorizing the word of God.  For today we recommend you look up (in your favorite translation) 1 Corinthians 9:27, write it on a note card or sticky note and then say it out loud 7 times or until you can say it from memory.  For me, I learn better by saying them as I write them several times.  We also recommend that you memorize the “address” (1 Corinthians 9:27) as well, so that in the future you can look it up easily or refer other people to it quickly.

Now when (notice I did not say “if”) you are tempted, if at all possible, say this verse out loud.  This is important.  In those moments of temptations, if you are able to roll these words right off your tongue it will make Temptation flee!  Really.  You’ll see.

Categories: 365 Life, Numbers, Season 3, True Intimacy | Leave a comment

Day 4: Fast


Numbers 15:22-18:32

The following is an excerpt from our book True Intimacy.

For the next month we will be posting a chapter a day for your reading (and marital) pleasure. However, if you would like to purchase an electronic or printed copy for yourself or someone else we would greatly appreciate your support! To go to the web page for more information click here.

Then Joshua said to the people, “Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the LORD will do wonders among you.”  Joshua 3:5

 

OK, so if you’re still reading today you’ve decided to see this thing out the whole way.  You’ve decided to join us on our journey and sex fast with us.  I’m telling you, this is very powerful stuff, not for the faint of heart.  However, you WILL NOT REGRET THIS!  Christian was reluctantly compliant in our first and second sex fast (yes, believe it or not, we’ve done this more than once) and close to the end of the second fast he told me, “We should really do this again sometime”.  Taking sex out of your relationship changes it, dramatically.  I’m going to be honest with you, fasting is difficult.  You will fight, you will cry, you will be frustrated and you will be angry; and so you will pray, you will read (I suggest the Bible along with this blog), and you will seek God like never before.  This is why I wish I could be there with you, to encourage you to keep going.  You CAN survive this storm and your marriage WILL be so much better for it in the end.  “Fasting is the most sacred, most serious, most sacrificial way to present ourselves in total devotion to the Lord.  Fasting helps us relinquish our will to God.  By abstaining from food [or sex], humbling our souls, and setting worldly matters aside in an act of worship, we can please God beyond compare.”2

God cares more about our motives than our actions.  Therefore, we fast as an act of thanks for the second chance He has given us, and as atonement for the sexually immoral acts that we have committed in the past.  This is not something to take lightly my friend; you are entering into a serious commitment, one that will have a major impact on your life, a very positive one if you’re willing to do it for the right reasons.  Here are the rules of the road, they’re pretty simple and there are only two.

1) Whenever you fast, do not put on a gloomy face as the hypocrites do, for they neglect their appearance so that they will be noticed by men when they are fasting.  Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full.  But you, when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face so that your fasting will not be noticed by men, but by your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you.  (Matthew 6:16-18) In other words, don’t make a big deal about the fast to everyone you see.  In fact, don’t tell anyone, it’s to be done in “secret”.  We committed our sexually immoral acts in secret and God saw them; similarly redeem them in secret as well.  God will see it and reward you for it.  So far in my experience I’ve had a rule of 2 for my fasting.  Both times God has given me 2 other people to share my secret.  I have asked those people to pray for me and my husband that we may be successful in our fast, and that we will grow closer to God and each other because of it.  Other than those 2 people, to everyone else it’s business as usual, no matter what, no complaining, grumbling or twisting your face to show disapproval.  Remember, God sees what is done in secret, both the bad and the good.  Trust me, this IS worth it.

2) This fast includes ALL SEXUAL ACTIVITY OF ANY KIND.  We’re not just talking about strictly sex here.  We’re talking no sex, no touching each other (except for hugs and 10 second kisses), and no touching yourself! NOTHING FOR 30 DAYS!  It was through complete abstinence that we grew so much during that time.  Plus, in a way, it was resetting our bodies back to the “manufacturer’s settings” so to speak.  Seriously, if you do not take my word for this particular part of the fast you will not gain as much from the experience.  Trust me on this one!

To help you through this I suggest memorizing some scriptures.  They are extremely wise and really do help in those moments of weakness.  Two of my favorites for this are:
1 Corinthians 9:27
and Romans 6:14.  Both of these verses appealed to me because of the idea of being the master of my body.  There were moments of temptation, many of them.  And in those moments I could not allow my body the luxury of indulgence; I had to “beat” it instead.  I would say to myself, “No body, you are NOT in control and you will not get your way this time!”  That’s the true meaning of “SELF” control.  Your body is NOT the master of you!  You are the master of your body; do not allow your body to be the one in control!

A couple quick notes before I hand the laptop over to Christian. Wives, before day 30 arrives make sure to buy a new white bra and panties and if money isn’t too tight, a beautiful white satin nightgown.  I’ll explain more about this later, but for now, start looking for some beautiful new underwear or jammies… or BOTH!

Christian’s comments:

 

All right! You guys are on board, so let’s DO THIS THING! Husbands! You may not be too thrilled by this, but you just need to suck it up! Oh wait poor choice of words there. You can handle it! No, that’s not right either. It’s going to be hard, scratch that, difficult, but you will manage.  Seriously, though, you will get through this. You have to follow the rules though.

Number one: No whining, complaining, moaning, groaning, or any other form of grumbling allowed. Don’t say anything to the guys at work. No “The old lady says” comments to your buddies that you play sports with. No “Old ball and chain” remarks to the guys in the garage (if you’re a gear-head like me). Tell no one! Just live your life like nothing is different. However, don’t be surprised if they mention how they see or notice a difference in you.

Number two: No sexual activity of any kind! You will be tempted to, ahem, “take matters into your own hands”. Fight that temptation. Learn the scriptures that Tamar mentioned above. Recite them whenever you are tempted. There is an old joke that 90% of men admit to masturbating, the other 10% are liars. If you masturbate, you will be greatly tempted. One tip: Don’t think about getting through the 30 days all together, you will likely fail. Instead, get through one day at a time. If that’s too long, just get through one hour at a time. That’s how addicts beat their addictions. If they think about going the rest of their life without whatever they are addicted to (drugs, alcohol, cigarettes, etc.), they will fail almost every time. So they break it down into shorter time intervals, usually hours. That’s how I beat my addiction to chewing tobacco. I would think, “I can make it through this hour without it.” Then think the same thing the next hour.

Another tip: Remove any sexually suggestive material from your house and workplace. Any movies, pictures, magazines, etc. They don’t necessarily have to be pornographic either. Like I stated earlier, they could be something as simple as a movie with scantily clad women, or even your wife’s Cosmo magazines. I still struggle with the temptations of pornography and masturbation. Having fewer things to tempt me, made the fast much easier to get through. It also helps after the fast is over.

Categories: 365 Life, Numbers, Season 3, True Intimacy | Leave a comment

Day 3: Return


Numbers 12:1-15:21

The following is an excerpt from our book True Intimacy.

For the next month we will be posting a chapter a day for your reading (and marital) pleasure. However, if you would like to purchase an electronic or printed copy for yourself or someone else we would greatly appreciate your support! To go to the web page for more information click here.

And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what had been spoken to her by the Lord.  Luke 1:45

 

Blessed is she who believed.  Do YOU believe that God can heal your marriage?  I believed; and it totally changed the course of my entire life.  God’s plans for us are so much bigger and better than our own plans.  HE knows the future, we don’t.  Trust Him.  He is faithful to His word.  When you obey Him, He blesses you.  Sometimes more than you can bear.  So I hope you’re ready for this!

I would like to share a letter to God that I wrote in the beginning of this journey.

“Lord, my heart is so broken right now.  I am so consumed with Christian and his neglect of his duties to us.  I don’t understand what you want me to do.  I know that you don’t want divorce because I have a blood covenant with him, but he hurts my feelings so much.  I feel like he’s sucking the spirit from me.  Yet I love him so desperately.  I can’t REALLY leave him.  You’re not really telling me to leave the husband of my youth are you?  Surely not.  What you have joined together let no man tear asunder right?

Lord, I need an undivided heart, one where BOTH halves are pumping and functioning together as one.  PLEASE help us become one again.  And not just for a short time but for forever.  Please please please don’t let it come to this again!  Please Lord, I’m begging you; heal us back together again so that we are one functioning heart again.  Let the two become one and stay that way!”

Reading that letter again I remember the pain and grief that I felt over how our relationship was fairing.  Yet, it makes me happy to read it, because it shows me just how far we’ve truly come; how far God has brought us on the path of healing.  In response to this letter do you know what God told me?  Therefore repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord; (Acts 3:19) He gave me my answer.  Repent, turn to God, and times of refreshing WOULD come.  Not maybe they’d get here, they WOULD come.  I had already repented of my sin of pre-marital sex and I believe God had forgiven me for it.  But I hadn’t forgiven myself, and I certainly hadn’t forgiven Christian for taking my virginity before it was time to take it.  Don’t get me wrong, he didn’t rape me, if I had told him “no” he would NOT have had sex with me.

I’ll never forget that moment of decision as long as I live!  We were lying there completely naked together, Christian over me asking “What do you think?”  And I heard God’s desperate plea in my right ear say: “Baby, don’t do this!”  But the tempter was right there too, in my left ear, “Oh, it’s no big deal, you’re going to marry each other at some point anyway so what difference does it make if you do it now or later?  It’s all the same.  Go ahead.  Do it.”  And just like Eve, I believed his LIE!  So instead of saying “no”, I said “yes”.  And that moment, the moment I said “yes” instead of “no”, changed everything.  That moment of disobedience turned my world upside down.

So, back in the present day, what’s a girl to do?!?  I felt like I needed to talk to Christian and in the least, request an apology from him.  But as I was preparing for my “talk” with him I did a lot of praying and scripture searching.  I felt that we needed to do more than just ask for forgiveness, we needed to DO something.  “God guide me!” I said.  He immediately made my eyes fall on Ezekiel 33:14-16.  But when I say to the wicked, “You will surely die,” and he turns from his sin and practices justice and righteousness, if a wicked man restores a pledge, pays back what he has taken by robbery, walks by the statutes which ensure life without committing iniquity, he shall surely live; he shall not die.  None of his sins that he has committed will be remembered against him.  He has practiced justice and righteousness; he shall surely live.

God gave me the steps to take.  1) Repent of our sin of sexual immorality by asking for forgiveness from God, each other, and ourselves.  2) Do what is right and restore what has been taken, therefore making restitution.  3) Sin no more.  Once we’ve done those three things NONE of our sins will be held against us anymore!  We will be free!  “OK”, I thought.  “I can do that!  Ummm, but Lord, how can I pay You back?  How can Christian return what he stole from me?  I mean… A hymen’s not really something that grows back ya know.”  That’s when the idea of fasting came to mind.  How can you give back sex?  Stop having it!  Not forever obviously, just for a time.  In 1 Corinthians 7:5 Paul writes: Stop depriving one another, except by agreement for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer, and come together again so that satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control. He was telling his followers in the church of Corinth that they should not withhold sex from their spouses except to grow closer to God, and only for a specific period of time so that the enemy would not tempt them to commit sexual immorality.  All of this seemed to fit perfectly for our situation.  I needed to repent and return the things that I had stolen and I needed to do that by abstaining from sexual relations with my husband for 30 days (which is the traditional length of a mourning period, fitting I thought).  I knew that Christian would not be happy about it, but I also knew that I would give him no choice.  And he’s a great man; I knew he wouldn’t force me.

Christian’s comments:

 

Christian was not happy, not happy at all. No sex for 30 days! We weren’t having sex all that often, but 30 days? That’s like a month!

Yeah, I wasn’t happy and I didn’t really understand either. But it was important to Tamar, so it was important to me.

As was stated in chapter one, as well as here, I wasn’t a great husband. No, I wasn’t a good husband, or father. I’d stay out late, working on demolition derby cars at one of my friends’ shops. I would only begrudgingly come home if Tamar had something to go to. It wasn’t that I didn’t love Tamar, but to me, everything I had going on was more important that anything she had going on. Little did I know, that’s what was tearing us apart.

The fast came along about the same time that I began to realize that I was a major problem in our marriage (after the pre-marital sex, multiple partners, masturbation, and porn of course). So I thought, “Hey, if this will help us to get closer, I’m in.” Boy howdy! Have we ever gotten closer (Wink wink, nudge nudge). Things aren’t perfect, but they are much better, and getting better every day.

Categories: 365 Life, Numbers, Season 3, True Intimacy | Leave a comment

Day 2: Shadows


Numbers 9:1-11:35

The following is an excerpt from our book True Intimacy.


For the next month we will be posting a chapter a day for your reading (and marital) pleasure. However, if you would like to purchase an electronic or printed copy for yourself or someone else we would greatly appreciate your support! To go to the web page for more information click here.

For the ways of a man are before the eyes of the LORD, and He watches all his paths.  His own iniquities will capture the wicked, and he will be held with the cords of his sin.  He will die for lack of instruction, and in the greatness of his folly he will go astray. Proverbs 5:21-23

In this proverb it talks about how our sins capture us, tying us up in cords.  Our lack of knowledge will lead us astray and cause us to make mistakes.  Our sins have enormous impact on our lives, especially when it’s not immediately evident. 

Take Adam and Eve for example.  In the Garden of Eden, God had originally commanded Adam: “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil for when you eat of it you will surely die.” (Genesis 2:16-17)  Then, later, in Genesis 3: 4 Eve has a conversation with a talking snake where he tells her that she will not “surely die”.  And she believed him!  She took the fruit… ate it… HEY!  No death!  Well, huh, no immediately evident death anyway.  There was immediate death alright.  The death of innocence, and the birth of guilt, shame and sorrow.  That is what disobedience (sin) will do; it immediately births guilt and shame and sorrow; all things that God never wants you to live with.

Have you ever spent time just looking at a shadow?  I mean really watching it?  Everything casts a shadow, even glass.  Old sins, those things we did when we were younger, those things cast shadows too.  Each sin that goes un-repented is like a brick in the blessing blockade.  The bigger the blockade the bigger the shadow it casts.  At “high noon” when the sin took place, the shadow was small and barely noticeable (ie. “I was just sowing my wild oats.”)  However, the longer the sin stays in your heart the bigger, longer, and farther reaching its shadow becomes.  Someday, if you sit and observe the shadows outside, as time passes you’ll notice that the shadows get longer and begin to creep over other objects in their path.  They begin to block out the light from the Son to those other things.  That is what past sins from your life can and will do.  The longer those sins stay locked up in the closet of your mind the bigger and farther reaching their shadows become.  Eventually, they start creeping and covering other aspects of your life; blocking God’s light from touching them.  I can’t speak for you my friend, however I know that I had old sins, and they were casting very long shadows.  Those shadows were covering our marriage and blocking God’s loving grace from shining down on us.  They were blocking out the light of my husband’s love for me, and they were blocking my love from truly reaching my children.  These old sins, the ones that I’d shoved down into a teeny tiny box in the farthest corner of the back closet of my mind; they were the ones that were causing me so much grief.  Sometimes the only way to fix a current situation is to go back to the beginning.  Rewind time so to speak and fix the root of the problem and not just the symptom of it.  For us, the root of the problem was our pre-marital sexual experiences: pre-marital sex, emotional adultery, and porn/masturbation/self-pleasuring (we’ll go more into depth on each of these later).  These activities performed both before our wedding vows and after, could have ruined our marriage if they had continued to grow and “shadow” over other things.  However, through the power of Christ, we are not only forgiven of the sins that we committed, against Him, ourselves, and each other, we were also freed from the “cords that ensnared us” and our sexual blessing blockade tumbled down! 

One morning, early on in the writing process for this book, God gave me a very sobering and heartbreaking vision, one I’ll not soon forget.  We were standing high on a cliff looking down on a large town.  As I looked down onto this sleeping town it was like Earth had turned into hell.  Almost every house was black, charred as if it had burned somewhat.  Between the houses, rivers of lava flowed in the streets.  The cries coming from these houses were mournful and desperate.  But the cries weren’t from human lips; they were being made by human souls.  Every living soul in every charred house was crying, mourning.  God turned to me and said, “This is what sexual sin does to you.  It brings hell to Earth.”  As I’m writing this I just want to sob.  My soul cries out, not for myself (at least not anymore) but for every living thing in those houses.  Because I remember what it was like inside my house before God came in and remodeled it.  My house was burned to a crisp!  My sexual sin and my husband’s were burning our house down.  It was tearing us apart.  The stress in our home was palpable.  My husband was never home, I was miserable, my children were unhappy, life was filled with tears. 

Is your soul in torment?  In the Garden of Eden, after they had eaten the forbidden fruit, Adam and Eve hid from God.  Are you hiding from God?  Out of guilt, or grief, or shame?  God knows where you are and He has come to you, in your place of hiding.  He is standing next to you with His outstretched hand hoping that you will take it, stand back up, and follow Him.  He loves you no matter what your condition and no matter what you’ve done.  Really, no matter WHAT you’ve done.  There is nothing under the sun that you have done that God hasn’t seen done before and isn’t willing to forgive.  There is NOTHING you could ever do to make Him stop loving you, not even for a second.  Nothing.  Period! 

Christian’s comments:

Have you ever gotten a splinter in your finger and not been able to get it out? If left too long, the splinter will irritate you more and more. It will eventually get infected and swollen. It will start to affect your daily life. If left long enough, the infection could get bad enough that your finger would need to be amputated. Or worse, the infection could spread and your whole hand could be lost. Obviously, I’m being dramatic. I’ve never known anyone that left a splinter in their finger long enough for that to happen. I did hear about a guy with one in his foot, but that’s a story for a different time (and book).  Anyway…

An old sin is like the splinter. The longer you hold onto that sin, the more it affects you. Everything reminds you of it. People, places, things people say. Eventually, you can’t stop thinking about it and it really starts to affect your life.

As you may have guessed, I’m the one that had pre-marital sex with other people; two girls in college to be exact. We have come to agree that if Tamar and I had not had sex when we did, I don’t think I would have had sex with those two other girls. After Tamar and I had “done it”, I realized what I was missing. I think I may be getting ahead of myself, let’s do a little history.

 It all started when I was in jr. high. That’s when I started masturbating. Shortly after I took up masturbation, I started looking at pornography. (I learned later that God considers it adultery to look lustfully, and masturbate to, other women.) After a while, the porn became a tool for masturbation. (I’m using the word “porn” very broadly. I didn’t necessarily look at magazines full of naked people; I would also look at scantily clad people in Cosmo, or catalogs, or on the internet. I would even just read about people having sex. To me, porn is that broad of a subject. To this day, I still have to guard myself against looking at magazines and catalogs. Some of the images in them can bring some of those temptations back to the surface. The enemy will use all the tools at his disposal to get you to slip and fall.)

All of this finally built to a crescendo, the porn and masturbation weren’t enough.  I “needed” physical satisfaction from someone else. Tamar was several hours away, so I found someone at school to get that satisfaction. Afterwards, it all started tearing me up inside. I started suffering from depression. I didn’t want to spend time with my family, friends, or anybody. I’d just sit and watch TV and wonder why my life was falling down around me.  Because of this fast, I found out why. Keep reading, and you will too.

Categories: 365 Life, Numbers, Season 3, True Intimacy | Leave a comment

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