Wednesday 21 January 2015

The Sanctity of Christian Marriage

This post is part of the Choosing Him Blog Tour which I am delighted to be a part of along with 
nearly 100 other inspiring Christian bloggers. 

Over the last month or so I've been reading a new book by Juana Mikels. Choosing Him All Over Again is a wonderful book that every Christian woman should read. Read it as a single lady to gain some great advice and guidance on the pitfalls of a worldly approach to marriage or read it as a married Christian woman and find inspiration and direction in how to be a godly wife. 

I love this book so much as Juana's story is very real with lots of poor decisions and selfish actions but as you read it you grow with Juana and learn from her mistakes. She writes with such feeling and honesty that you feel as if it is a close friend telling you her story and parts will make you well up with emotion as you journey with Juana and see her faith mature.

One of the main selling points for me is that Juana goes back to the word again and again. This book is not Juana's take on a godly marriage. It is God's and is grounded in the truth. I haven't quite finished the book as yet as I am savouring every part but it is my time in the blog tour to post and as such I want to share with you some of the wonderful wisdom I have gained from Juana.

I've been married to my husband Adam for 12 years now and we have been together for 20. If I'm honest I don't think we started in the best place as neither of us were Christians when we met and I certainly bought a lot of past relationship baggage with me but what I have discovered is that with some work our marriage can be even better. God only wants the best for us and marriage is his most precious human relationship and it is His intention that every one of us should discover the joy of a godly marriage.

Juana starts her book by laying out two biblical principles that have been themes in her life -
the first principle is “man’s part is to trust, and God’s part is to work.” and the second principle is to receive everything in your life as if it has come directly from God’s hand.
Such great reminders for me and I have already found myself putting Juana's wisdom into action many times in the past weeks, both in my marriage and in other parts of my life. Within her book she has various prayers and a contract which she encourages the reader to take and make their own and use in their life. I have done just that and was particularly struck with the contract that Juana drew up with God declaring that she was dead to self and all her sins and possessions were no longer hers. She had given them up for a full and abundant life with Jesus and fulfilment of the desires of her heart.

This got me thinking, what are the desires of my heart? To honour God and carry out His work, to nurture children who know the Father and remain with Him and like Juana, to have a full and meaningful relationship with my husband. Nothing too complex there really but lots of work to be done to achieve in each of those areas, but that is OK, there is nothing wrong with hard work and the rewards will be great.

I could be here all day waxing lyrical about this book as it is having a big impact on me, but actually what you need to do is go out and buy a copy for yourself, so to close I'll leave you with some of Juana's wisdom gems -
  • Comparison is the path to discontentment. We all walk a different path and as such our only measure should be Jesus.
  • It is unrealistic to search after a love that is continual, unfading romance.
  • If I let Him God will use my marriage as a way to help me fully know Him.
  • The devil wants us to focus on the idol of self or any other idol to be honest and therefore we must keep going back to Jesus and His word.
  • In this age of technology we are all spending too much time in a room with our spouse but not actually being with them. TV, PC's, tablets, phones and the like have stolen our ability to communicate and demonstrate that our spouse is our priority.
  • It is a big mistake to spend all those months absorbed in every detail of planning the wedding to then only find you never actually thought about the marriage. A wedding is one day and your marriage is for life.
  • In the book Juana revisits her marriage vows and realises she has taken them lightly and is walking away from me. This inspired me to look up my marriage vows and remember what I committed to Adam. I need to be accountable to God 
  • Read 1 Corinthians 13 (especially if you had it read at your wedding, like I did) and remember how Paul describes love. Can I honestly say I am all those things to Adam? or like Juana was, am I more concerned with being loved than being loving and with being heard than listening to Adam.  That really is food for thought to me.
"Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.  It does not dishonour others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.  Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails" 1 Chorinthians 13:4-7
Thanks so much for reading, I hope I have inspired you to go and check our Juana's book, it really is an awesome read and I've given you just a tiny glimpse of what is contained within in.

Be blessed, Mich x
If you want to get your hands on your very own copy of this book (hardback or Kindle version) , you can order it from Amazon in the UK HERE or the USA HERE or buy it at your local bookstore! There is also a fabulous FREE downloadable companion Choosing Him Bible Study Guide to download from HERE!  

If you like what you have read and want to stay up-to-date then subscribe by email for free and receive blog posts directly to your in-box - just click the link Subscribe to Mummy From The Heart... by Email or perhaps you like to keep all your blog reading in one place, if that is the case you can follow me on BlogLovin too!Follow on Bloglovin