Archives for February 2009

Feb 28

Love, Jesus

It is the most amazing love story.

In January my daughter was playing outside. I was inside sitting on the couch, exhausted from a hard day. Suddenly she busted through the front door shouting, “Mommy Mommy, you got flowers from Jesus!” She was carrying a box. There was no name on it. I asked her how she knew they were from Jesus. She said, “the lady who dropped them off told me so.” I opened the box and there were 16 beautiful roses…a red/pink color…absolutely gorgeous. The card that accompanied the flowers said: You are loved, appreciated, and much more beautiful than all the flowers in the world.—-Love, Jesus

I began to get tears in my eyes. I can’t recall a time when I received flowers by delivery. Usually if I get flowers it’s because it’s my anniversary or something like that. And I’ve never received flowers from Jesus before. My heart was so incredibly warmed to think that someone would do this for me.

Yesterday, I had a similar experience. I went to the mail box and there was a card for me. Inside there was a note that read: Dear Melissa, Don’t worry! I’ve got everything under control. Love Always, Jesus.

Again, I was overwhelmed with emotion. I wasn’t expecting this. My life has been running fairly smooth lately. I haven’t been worried or stressed out. Who is behind my Jesus notes?

I got a call from my mom last night. She was crying. She was very upset. She had a biopsy done and more cancer was found. Totally different than the lung cancer she already has. I felt like my heart was going to stop. There didn’t seem to be enough air in the room to breath. Why? Why does she have more cancer now? I don’t know how to handle this. My mom is so young.

Sitting beside the phone was the note I’d received that day in the mail. “Don’t worry! I’ve got everything under control.” Amazing. Just when I needed it, I had it. The love of my life took care of me. And through some divine intervention, Jesus sent me the words I needed before I would actually need them.

No one on this earth could do that. My husband was so sweet and did his best to comfort me. But it was the words of Jesus that brought me comfort last night.

The greatest love story ever told should be the love story between me and Jesus…..you and Jesus. I don’t think I could get through life without Him. I know I couldn’t.

Not only does Jesus love us, but He sees us and He knows everything we go through. He cares. And He has everything under control.

Now that’s an amazing love!

Much Love,

Melissa

****Thank you so much for all of the comments on the last 2 posts. I’m being encouraged through your comments! I’ve been busy responding to the many emails that came in after my devo last week. So many women share the same struggles in marriage. Hang in there! Choose to love! Just don’t give up hope.

Melissa
Feb 26

Is Love a Feeling or a Decision?

First let me say, this one can cause some controversy! I am going to give you MY OPINION here. You may agree. You may disagree. And that’s ok.

I wanted love to be a feeling. In fact I expected it to be a feeling. And I was let down big time.

My view of love for most of my life has been someone to provide for me, rescue me, wine and dine me, romance me, make me laugh, write me love notes, pray with and for me, etc. Someone that I would forever be crazy about and feel all lovey dovey with. I believed in loved stories and wanted one in my own life so badly.

This view is not wrong. But for me it wasn’t real. And that was the problem. I so desired those “characteristics” of love…but I wasn’t feeling them. So, because I didn’t feel love did that mean I wasn’t loved or in love?

So, in my opinion, love is a decision. Maybe there are some that think it is a feeling. But feelings change quickly and love cannot change. Not if it’s forever it can’t. Feelings are so fickle. And if you are going to be with someone forever, well then you have to decide to love them. Life enters and interferes with fairy tale romance. So, doesn’t love have to be a decision?

The first time I ever heard of love being a decision was when I started reading Karen Kingsbury novels, the Baxter Family series. Then I began “The Love Dare” and the concept was reinforced. In fact it brought me comfort. It made me feel more normal that I had to decide to love and didn’t feel it all the time. And that doesn’t take away from my love for Jeff. I am excited to decide to love Jeff.

The Bible says in 1 Corinthians 13 that love is patient and kind. Well I don’t know about you, but patient and kind don’t come natural to me. Especially the patient part. To be patient and kind, I have to decide to be patient and kind. So if love is patient and kind, for me it is a decision. I don’t ever feel patient. Maybe kind. But not patient. It’s a decision.

So, choose to love. If you are married, love your husband. Choose it. Choose it. Choose it. You have a choice. Love him. You chose to marry him and took vows to love him for better or worse. So choose to love him.

We’ll talk about more later. Please comment and question.

Blessings,

Melissa
Feb 23

Barely Surviving to Thriving???

Please check back to my blog a little later. I’ll be following up today’s devotion on Encouragement for Today where I’ll go into a few more details about my marriage and it’s transformation. (or I guess I should say my transformation).

In the mean time, if you have any questions for me, please post them here and I’ll answer them. Ask whatever you want, anything goes!

Also, check out the post right below this one. If your marriage is struggling, I pray it encourages you. Two years ago I would have thought for sure we could never have had a weekend like the one I wrote about in that post.

Thanks for visiting my blog. I’ll be back soon to write more!

Blessings,


Well, I’m back. I thought I’d post around noon. Only I received so many emails that had similar stories or were from women (and men) who wanted to share their marriage journey and struggles. The comments on this blog today had me very prayerful. I can’t address everything here today, but over the next few days I’ll try to cover what I can.

Many people mentioned “The Love Dare”. Very interesting because just this past weekend I wrote a devotion titled “The Love Dare”, based on the book, which is based on the movie Fireproof, which I have been using since Christmas. It totally changed my perspective on love. I’m not going to say much more about it now because I plan to do much more with it when the devo runs. But, I would recommend it. I started it without telling my husband. I changed inside and he noticed a difference within the first 5 days.

I said to my husband tonight, “Honey, was it worth it? What we went through? Maybe so we could encourage others and bring hope to their marriages?” He couldn’t say “yes”…..we went through a lot of pain. And we wouldn’t ever wish it on anyone else. But….God has brought good out of it. We don’t share every detail of our issues. Some are just too painful and personal. But God has used the “barely surviving” of our marriage and empowered us to share what we are ready to share to hopefully bring hope to those struggling.

One of my roles at Proverbs 31 is to go through the prayer requests each day and forward them on to our Prayer Warriors, who faithfully pray. As I copy and paste these requests, I too pray for them. I also answer the phone in our office and pray with people over the phone. Do you know what our #1 prayer request is? MARRIAGE! So nothing anyone has posted has surprised or shocked me. I’ve either experienced it myself or heard it over and over through those in need of prayer. I know first hand that marriage is being attacked in a big way. #2 is finances. I don’t know about you, but financial hardship was another thing hurting my marriage. (I have a devo coming up about that too!)

The truth is, marriage is not easy. When we say our vows, the preacher makes you repeat, “for better or worse” that’s because there will be better and you can bet there will be worse. We make a commitment to stay together NO MATTER WHAT….”for better or for worse”….but when the worse comes, we aren’t prepared and we get scared and bail. It’s hard. But we have all we need to withstand it. We have Jesus.

Now I know that sounds great. I used to look at those couples with “perfect marriages” and think….there is no way she understands what I have to live with…what I’m going through…the fear, the uncertainty, the debt, the lack of control….etc.

Anyway, for now, if I can give anyone a piece of advice, it would be….DON’T GIVE UP! There is hope. God is so much bigger than we can grasp. Our relationship with Him is the ONLY thing we can totally count on 100%. We have to have that right first, then direct our focus on our husbands.

Praying Through the Deeper Issues of Marriage by Stormie O’Martian was big for me. I read Power of a Praying Wife first some years back. I picked up this one last year when my marriage was on the brink of extinction. It touched on issues no one wants to talk about. You know the “secret” things you can’t tell your church friends. Needless to say it was one of many resources that helped me.

Thank you so much for writing me. I will try to address the topics mentioned in the posts for the remaining of the week. And if you have any personal questions, feel free to contact me directly at Melissa@MelissaTaylor.org. God Bless you. And God Bless your marriage.

Much Love,

Melissa

The 2 devotions I wrote previously that I mentioned in my devotion, you can find here:

http://proverbs31devotions.blogspot.com/2008/07/love-me-heart-of-lost-teenage-girl.html


http://proverbs31devotions.blogspot.com/2008/07/i-love-you-heart-of-married-woman.html

Melissa