And he said unto them, The Lord is witness against you, and his anointed is witness this day, that ye have not found ought in my hand. 1 Samuel 12:5.
The dissatisfied longing for worldly power and display, is as difficult to cure now as in the days of Samuel. Christians seek to build as worldlings build, to dress as worldlings dress—to imitate the customs and practices of those who worship only the God of this world. The instructions of God’s Word, the counsels and reproofs of His servants, and even warnings sent directly from His throne, seem powerless to subdue this unworthy ambition. When the heart is estranged from God, almost any pretext is sufficient to justify a disregard of His authority….
The most useful men are seldom appreciated. Those who have labored most actively and unselfishly for their fellow man, and who have been instrumental in achieving the greatest results, are often repaid with ingratitude and neglect. When such men find themselves set aside, their counsels slighted and despised, they may feel that they are suffering great injustice. But let them learn from the example of Samuel not to justify or vindicate themselves, unless the Spirit of God unmistakably prompts to such a course.
The honor accorded him who is concluding his work is of far more worth than the applause and congratulations which those receive who are just entering upon their duties, and who have yet to be tested.
How many retiring from a position of responsibility as a judge, can say in regard to their purity, Which of you convinceth me of sin? Who can prove that I have turned aside from my righteousness to accept bribes? I have never stained my record as a man who does judgment and justice. Who today can say what Samuel said when he was taking leave of the people of Israel, because they were determined to have a king? … Brave, noble judge! But it is a sorrowful thing that a man of the strictest integrity should have to humble himself to make his own defence.
Conflict and Courage p. 147
—–I have been having internet trouble since September ninth. Please pray that it can be resolved soon. Rose
Since Ronnie Jay is soon to be married, I thought I would share this little item I wrote for my girls before they were wed.
Fifteen Steps to a Happy Marriage
1. Make Jesus the center of your life. Have morning and evening worship together each day as well as having your own private devotions. As you grow closer to Christ, you will draw closer to each other.
2. Communicate. Spend at least thirty minutes each day in meaningful conversation. Speak of your joys, sorrows, hopes for the future, and the happenings of the day while you were apart.
3. Problems will arise. You will not always view everything in the same light as will your mate. Sometimes he/she will embarrass you in front of others. This is normal. Remember you are from different backgrounds and what seems appropriate to one person may seem just the opposite to the other. When problems do arise, discuss the matter in private. Pray together before you start to discuss the problem. Study to see if the Bible says anything in regard to the subject. (If you feel yourself getting angry, stop the discussion immediately, pray, and resume the discussion later.)
4. Tell each other “I love you” every day. You might think that your marriage partner knows you love him/her, but he/she might be feeling very unloved and taken for granted. (This is a good rule to remember when you are blessed with children. Even teens need to know that you love them, even though they may not admit it.)
5. Never say unkind remarks. When you say an unkind word to your mate, it hurts him/her badly and the hurt doesn’t go away easily. Making your mate feel like he/she is worthless or your child causes a rift not easily mended. Even if he/she forgives you, the hurt is still there.
6. Never hit each other. Violence is not God’s way and will cause untold misery for both of you.
7. Be very tender in your intimate relations. Remember that there are holy angels watching even in your bedroom. If one of you is uncomfortable with something intimate, it would be better to avoid it than to push your desires onto the other one. There are many years ahead to spend with each other.
8. Do the finances together. By doing this, you both know what is available and can discuss purchases together. Make a budget and stick to it. As you use this budget for a few months, it may need to be revised. Revise the budget together to keep reminding yourself just what it entails.
9. Be honest with each other. For your future happiness, it is extremely important to tell each other, before marriage, the things in your past that may have a direct bearing on your life together.
10. Never be too proud to apologize and really mean it. Sometimes the only thing it would take to solve an argument is two little words: “I’m sorry.” Don’t be too proud to forgive. An apology is of no effect if it is not forgiven. Make it your policy never to go to bed angry with each other or until the argument is resolved and all is forgiven.
11. Don’t forget to cuddle. When sitting together, cuddling can make a couple bond more than most other activities. Just before you go to sleep, cuddle for a few minutes—-not for sex, but for the secure feeling that it brings.
12. Attend church together each week. Even if you move away and you aren’t familiar with the churches in your new area, make sure that you do not neglect this important part of your marriage. “Forsake not the assembling of yourselves together.” Heb 10:25
13. Stay true to your marriage vows. Over the years, you may find someone who seems attractive to you. Avoid this person as much as possible and remind yourself what made you fall in love with your partner in the first place. This is very important as being faithful to each other is the only way a marriage commitment will be successful.
14. Be best friends. Set aside a certain amount of time each week when you can spend time doing fun things together just like you did during your courtship. If you do have other friends, they should be someone that both of you feel comfortable with. Don’t value these friends more highly than you value your mate.
15. When children come. If and when you do start a family, make sure your children know they are not an inconvenience to you. Let them know that you are always there to help them. Set aside time for them. As they are growing up, set an example for them. Teach them about God and how they can become like Him. Remember, “By beholding we become changed”—that works with children too. When they grow up and move out of your home, keep in close contact with them and have a good and loving relationship with them even though they are miles away.