Saturday, April 14, 2018

his lifestyle //

Okay once again, I am behind! ugh... We are still under challenge #3! But we are going to fly through this so we can move on. I only have 70 days to finish this..... because then we will be married!!! Wow! That is crazy to think about. Time has flown by!

Let me first recap- last post we discussed writing a letter to God. I hope you did this! Re-read your letter. It is a personal milestone to your relationship with Christ.

His Health- 
1 Cor 6:19-20
I totally though this was going to be about physical health but it isn't limited to just that. In fact, she includes mental health & resisting the desires of the flesh. I pray You remind him that he cannot fight desires of the flesh without You. I pray that my future husband is a modest man; that the way he dresses and behaves honors You. I pray he uses the talents You ave given him to worship You. 
Before I read this, I thought about modesty as only a thing for women. Modesty applies to men as well, especially in the way the speak and interact with others.

Integrity- 
Proverbs 10:9
This one is huge for me. I strive to always be honest and I look for that in all my relationships with others. I pray that my future husband has strong morals that our founded in Your Holy Word. Holy Spirit, refine him so that he is a man of virtue. I pray he treats women with understanding and compassion. I pray his heart is tender toward children & that he respects the elderly. Transform him into a man of courage who is willing to be set apart from this world. I pray my future husband clings to the truth and that he leads me in this area and teaches me by his example. 
Okay- wow. These words sink deep into my heart. I pray that both of us are able to be leaders to others and that we live our lives in a way that shows others Christ and His love.

Resisting Temptations-
1 Cor 10:13
We all struggle with various temptations. One thing this book talks a lot about, is finding a mentor or a friend who is strong in their faith who will help you stay on the right path. If you don't have a mentor/friend, I urge you to find one who you feel comfortable to share these things with. I pray that when my future husband is tempted, he is able to resist it and seek after You. Remind him that he can flee whatever situation he is in. Surround him with good people and strong friends who also have a desire to live righteously. May Your perfect will be done in his life. 

Love Like Christ- 
John 15:12-13
This section just might be my favorite & I am struggling to condense it, so I'm going to write everything she wrote, well almost everything.
Thank You for Your beautiful example of love. Thank You for loving me, and thank You for loving my future husband. I am in awe of how Your love can transform lives. I pray that my future husband has an incredibly intimate relationship with You. I pray that he knows what real love is because he knows You. Holy Spirit, please fill his heart with Your presence and help him to love like Christ. I pray that he is motivated by Your love to love all people. I pray he can love and lay down his life for his friends. Open his eyes to how he can bless others. I pray that he is willing to sacrifice his desires for the sake of others. May You inspire him to go the extra mile for others. I pray also that he has a great love for me. I pray that our love would grow deeply intimate, and that what we experience together helps understand the way You love us too. I pray he is affectionate and understanding. I pray he is creative in the ways he shows me and tells me of his love for me. I pray he ever doubts Your great love for him. Amen. 
Again, wow. We all need this, not just our future or current husbands. We should all live our lives like Christ did. I pray that each one of us will be more diligent to live like Christ and show love like Christ.

Being A Good Steward-
1 cor 4:1 
Lastly, we are praying for our husbands to be good men. Lord, I pray that my future husband will make wise decisions with all that You give him and that he would be grateful for it all. I pray that he would be a good servant to You and others around him. I pray that he isa generous man. I pray that he is willing to give gifts to others and help those in need. I pray that he manages his life well. I pray for our future marriage. May Your Holy Spirit help my husband lead us as we make decisions together. I pray that we will always encourage one another and use our gifts to bless others. May You remind us daily that what we have comes from You. Amen. 
As I go through these challenges and pray for Michael specifically, I can't help but realize that I also need to work on some of these things. I pray that together as well as separately we are able to fulfill these things and that we pray for each other daily.


Hopefully I will have challenge #4 up this week!! 
xoxo, 
Rachel

Ps- WE HAD OUR FIRST SHOWER!! We are feeling so blessed by all the love & support. Thank you all for the prayers & kind wishes

Thursday, March 29, 2018

challenge #3 //

Okay.... so I got a little bit behind. I am so sorry. Life has been quite busy lately. Before we get to challenge 3, we need to update on the tail end of challenge 2. The last two prayers were staying out of debt & making wise decisions. I personally think that these to go hand in hand. Under the staying out of debt part, I included that we would always talk to each other and pray before we made any financial decisions. It is so important to communicate in  relationship, especially about money. Money is the number one cause of divorce!! Secondly, under making wise decisions, I prayed specifically that God would place righteous men as an influence in Michael's life and that he would feel comfortable taking advice from. I pray that Michael will always ask God for wisdom and seek the truth when making decisions.
Romans 13:8, Proverbs 12:15
challenge #3: 
Write a letter to God. In this letter, include hopes and fears for marriage and whatever you are currently feeling. Share your whole heart with God.

This challenge is very personal, so I encourage each one of you to write or type a letter to God out. Stick it in your prayer journal and look at it from time to time. If you feel comfortable sharing yours, feel free to comment, however you do not have to! I will probably not share mine personally on the blog, but I am writing one out to save in my journal!

Under this challenge we will talk about:

  • his health 
  • integrity 
  • resisting temptations 
  • love like Christ
  • being a good steward 

Thank each one of you for reading and for praying for us on our journey. While I am writing, I want to include some things that have happened since I last wrote.
Our puppet team 2013! Pops Pizza Barn!

 
  First: last night was amazing!!! For those of you who do not go to church with us, our girls who are participating in lads to leaders this weekend did a dress rehearsal for our ladies class last night. It always amazes me to see how far lads has come at our church. I remember when Brian Shaw suggested we go and took a bust of us kids up for the weekend to watch other churches. Let me tell you, it is an amazing event to partake in. Seeing hundreds of kids loving and worshiping the Lord is so uplifting. These girls last night encouraged me. When I was their age, I was terrified! Seriously. The only event I would do was puppets since it was behind a curtain! I still struggle with praying out loud. These girls at Walter Hill are full of courage and strength. These are girls I have watched grow up, baby sat, taught and inducted some of them into the youth group! It is crazy and so inspirational to see them grow into these beautiful Christain women.
  Also, we started pre-martial counseling and we are actually almost through! Crazy that time is flying and we are into the double digits!! Three months, 86 days!!! And we are quickly approaching wedding shower month!!
  Also, also, I have this really big, big thing coming up and could really use some prayers!!!!
Love y'all!!!
Rachel

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

his purpose and confidence //

So I knew this would happen, I got behind! I am so sorry... I am just always so busy. Last night we were out late at our first pre-marital counseling meeting. Let me tell ya, I was super nervous about going to counseling but it was actually really refreshing and I am looking forward to next week. A lot of marriage stuff has been going on actually. The new quarter at church started last week so we started a new Bible class on Wednesday nights and the topic is marriage and relationships. So far, I love the class!! I am so excited to see what tonight's lesson will be about.

Enough about that, I know you're all more interested in what is under challenge #2! Well I am going to break it down into two different blogs. Half today, half tomorrow. Today's is all about praying for his purpose and confidence in Christ. With that, let us keep in mind that challenge #2 is focusing on how God shows us love. Let's begin.

understanding HIS PURPOSE: 
Psalm 57:2
Today, ask God to give your (future) man courage to find his purpose. That God will reveal to him his talents and that he will use them daily to glorify God and bring others to know Him. Pray that he has confidence in his purpose and that he uses his talents in the marriage as well. Ask God to give him encouragement and to keep negative thoughts from his mind. Amen.

Confidence IN YOU:
Jeremiah 17:7
okay, this one might be my favorite so far!
Dear Lord,
Thank you for today and the warm sunshine You so richly blessed us with. Wherever my future husband is, I pray that he feels You near. May You wash him with peace. I pray that he had a blessed day. I pray that his heart is filled with joy in You. I pray that he is confident in You and that his faith grows stronger every day. I pray that he trusts You in every situation and he choses Your will over evil temptations. I pray that he leans on Your wisdom for guidance and that he learns to trust You, so that when he is my husband he will lead me with out doubt or fear. I pray that he strives to meet heavenly goals and what You have called him to do. May his fear of You be greater than anything else in this world. May he stand firm on Your word. Amen.


Thank you for your continued prayers,
Rachel

**tomorrow: unveiling your heart, staying out of debt, and making wise decisions**

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Challenge Number Two //

Challenge number 2: Take some time to think!!! Consider all the ways God shows you His love. Praise Him for all the intentional details He puts into loving you.

Woah, God shows me His love every minute of every day. No matter how much I seem to fail, He always hold me tight in His arms. Sometimes it is so hard for me to fathom the very thought of this. I mean, how could He possibly love me when I can be so mean, distant, hateful? But He does! He is the Great God.

As I considered how God has shown me love in my personal life, I can't help but think one of the ways He shows me His love is by the people He placed into my life. Especially my family, close friends, and Michael. Every day, I am more and more thankful to have these people as constants in my life.

To my parents- Y'all have raised me into the strong-willed, Christian girl that I am. I would not be where I am today if it weren't for the two of you. You taught me about Christ's love, about how to love others and what it means to be a good friend. You have wiped my tears, held my hand, and walked with me through all of my struggles.

Mom- you were my first and are my forever friend. God knew what He was doing by making you my mother. You have taught me so much about being a woman, a christian, and a wife. I look up to you and can barely do anything without you. You are almost like the sister I never had.

Daddy- I will always be your little girl and travel companion. You were my first love and I will forever love you. I always have tried to make you proud, though I do mess up sometimes. Thank you for showing me how to go out and be myself, get dirty, and to make the most of every situation.

To Sam- You have always been there for me since the beginning. I know you always wished I was a boy and I wished you were a girl, but I have never been more thankful for an older brother. You have always protected me, looked out for me, and shown me how to have fun. You are always a call or text away and I know you always will be. Thank you for sticking up for me and letting me be your shadow. I have always thought the world of you and longed to be just like your character.

To Jessica- you are my best friend and basically my sister. You have seen me in my best of times and in my worst times and still chose to be my friend. You have shown me how to be patient, kind, and self-less. To do nothing before we've had coffee. You have always stuck by me through all of my crazy ideas and drop just about anything to be there for me. You are a true picture of self-less and I am forever grateful to you.

To Michael- you are the love of my life. The one who I am meant to spend forever with. Thank you for putting up with my sassiness and making me laugh. I love all the adventures we have had and that we will continue have. You are sweet and caring and you always put my happiness before your own. I pray for you daily and I cannot wait to spend my life with you. I know that sometimes it will be difficult, but we can handle it.

To my friends and family- Thank you for your continuous support. Each one of you has played a role in my life though it may not be a daily thing, I am forever grateful. Each one of you has impacted and shaped my life to that lady I am today. Without your love, support, encouragement, and prayers I would be nothing.

This blog has been a little different, and I know I did not include you all by name. I am so sorry for that, but I am thankful for each and every one of you. I also focused on ways God has shown me love by the people He has put into my daily life. This one is not all about Michael. I pray that each of you will get personal in your own prayers and ponder ways God has shown you love.

With love,
Rachel

**tomorrow is..... understand his purpose**



Saturday, March 10, 2018

His mind //

We have finally reached the end of challenge one!! This is the last section to pray about before our challenge two begins. Tonight's prayer is over protecting our man's mind!

Luke 12:2 "And do not be conformed to this world but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that you may prove what is good and acceptable and perfect will of God." 

As we get older, we realize even more how hard it is to want to be like everyone else in the world. We want the same clothes, the same electronics, the same cars, the same houses... all world stuff but as christians we are called to be different, to stand out. As we pray over the mind of our man tonight, I urge you to pray that he keeps his mind on things that are above and on what is right. That he stands out in the world and brings others to Christ.

Dear Lord, 
I pray that you will protect my future husband's mind, that he would be strong to fight temptations. I pray that he will rely on You for strength and look to You for wisdom. I ask that You will reveal Yourself to him so that his faith will continue to grow. May Your Word be a foundation of his heart. I pray that he will be transformed into the man you have created him to be and that he will allow You to make this change in his life. Build him up so that he walks in spiritual maturity.  May he know that You love him and care so very deeply for him. Fill him with confidence so that insecurities and doubt do not over take him. 
In Your Name, 
Amen 

Tonight we focus on our hubby's mind and him looking to God for guidance, wisdom, and confidence. Let us also pray that we as the wife will continue to build him up and not be so quick to tear him down. Pray that we give our men that encouragement that they need and always stand by their side. Help us to speak softly to them and always pray for them, even if they do not know that we do.
 Always,
Rachel


***TOMORROW BEGINS CHALLEGNE #2!!!!!***

Friday, March 9, 2018

His Words //

I often struggle with communication and how I for my words so today's prayer is a little more personal than I'd like to admit. As we continue to pray for our men, we should also pray for ourselves as their (future) wives. Communication is such a huge part of any relationship and is often considered the most important element in the relationship.

[Luke 6:45]

Dear Heavenly Father, 
I want to thank you for my future husband and bringing him into my life. I pray that he is looked up to by his peers in high regard. I pray that his character is a reflection of You. May You have influence over his speech and every word that come out of his mouth. I pray that he has control over his tongue. I pray that he is quick to build others up and that he never uses his speech to tear others down or to hurt them in any way. I also want to pray that his words are a reflection of his heart and that they bring honor to Your name. I pray he communicated clearly and always speaks the truth. I pray that in our future marriage he will use his words to communicate with me calmly and respectfully. I ask that he will encourage me and comfort me in times of distress. I pray that he is willing to use his words to pray out loud with me, and that he is willing to praise You out loud. I pray that he will lead our relationship with gentleness in his tone of voice and use love as his motivation. In all these things I pray, Amen. 

This was my spin on the built in prayer in the book. In my prayer journal, I made it even more personal than it already is. As we pray, ask God to guide your own personal speech with you significant other as well and that you always keep God in the center of it all.

Tomorrow is a super busy day for me, so it'll be another late post. The last one under challenge #1: PROTECTING HIS MIND so if you need to get a head start, that is what will be on the blog tomorrow. Thank you all again for praying with me, for me, and taking on these challenges.

With love, 
Rachel

Thursday, March 8, 2018

His Family //

Okay, let me just say that I have always prayed for my future husband. My mom taught me to do so from a young age. Don't get me wrong about that. I do struggle with prayer but not in that way. My struggle comes when I lay down at night and begin to pray, I usually drift off before I finish praying. I also have a problem with focusing on myself. This is why I started using a prayer journal several years ago. It keeps me on task and helps me to minimize myself for a second and focus on others.

Now with that being clarified, we can begin. We left of with prayer for his heart, that he would be closer to God and take everything to God, allowing himself to be vulnerable. The next section which is also under challenge #1 is his family and his words and protecting his mind.

His Family:
As we pray for his family, Jennifer includes that he honors his father and mother. I love this line and the fact that she thought to include it since it is the first commandment. She bases the family section off of Exodus 20:12. 
Family has always been very important to me. I hang out with my parents more than I do my friends. My dad is my travel buddy and my mother is my best friend. With this being said, I have always longed that my future husband would also be family oriented. Thankfully mine is! But, it is still good to pray that their relationship (his and his parents) remain well.

In the book, I underlined "I pray that they can forgive and extend grace to each other." This is important in any relationship, but with parents it can be a challenge. We are all human. As the prayer for his family continues, I pray that my future husband talks to his parents with respect and compassion. I pray that he is bold with them and capable of talking about difficult things with them with courage and strength. I pray that he honors his family, but when the time comes for him to be my husband, he would be able to balance the priority of our marriage over his family in a respectful way. I pray that they are a loving family and that they love you. I pray that he has learned to be a good husband by his father or man's example. 

This part of the book is still under challenge one. It is important if you are following along, that tonight's prayer be on his family. I urge you to let yourself get emotional and personal as we continue through these challenges and daily prayers.

Always in love, 
Rachel