Originally published Friday, 03 August 2012.
Well, August has arrived! And for most of us, that means beginning the transition from Summer to Fall. Plans are prayed over and lined up for the coming Autumn months; hearth and home take on different requirements as schedules change rhythm from late night, cool, summer dinners and the enjoyment of a more spontaneous schedule to the hustle and bustle of the Fall. Between my hubby and me, I'm the one who likes to plan. When I know what to expect, I get more done, find I'm more efficient at the tasks at hand, that sort of thing. But I've learned from sharing life with my easy-going-spontaneous man that plans should never take precedence over God's direction or people - something that requires a sensitivity that "plans" are often deaf to.
Consider the following verses as you plan for the coming months:
Without consultation, plans are frustrated, But with many counselors they succeed. Proverbs 15:22 NAS
Commit your works to the LORD And your plans will be established. Proverbs 16:3 NAS The mind of man plans his way, But the LORD directs his steps. Proverbs 16:9 NAS
"For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life? And why are you worried about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more clothe you? You of little faith! Do not worry then, saying, 'What will we eat?' or 'What will we drink?' or 'What will we wear for clothing?' For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own." Matthew 6:25-34 NAS
In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:6 NAS
Come now, you who say, "Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and engage in business and make a profit." Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away. Instead, you ought to say, "If the Lord wills, we will live and also do this or that." But as it is, you boast in your arrogance; all such boasting is evil. Therefore, to one who knows the right thing to do and does not do it, to him it is sin. James 4:13-17 NAS
As I was thinking and praying over the myriad of activities and tasks lined up for the Fall, I was also reading a dear friend's newest book, 31 Days to a Happy Husband. There's plans for a new women's discipleship program, plans for blog posts, plans for articles to write, plans for the children's ministry for a new service the church is starting... on and on, but plans for a happy hubby? Well.... there's graphics to be designed, people to be called, praying to be done, more people to be called... but a happy hubby? As I started thinking over it, I realized, I wasn't planning for a happy husband, I was leaving that to "chance." I was expecting him to just be happy regardless. He usually is anyway! And besides, most of my planning list was tasks centered around being a good helpmate to him already, the word "happy" just hadn't made the list.
Did a "happy hubby" bubble to the top of your Fall planning list? Do you know how to help your man be happy? With beautiful honesty, great insights from marriage specialists and Biblical truth, Arlene leads her readers through simple steps to making your marriage a happy one. She uses an acrostic I just loved because it captures what we all want from marriage - the word dream. We all want to live the dream of happily ever after, of passion, of purpose, of unity and sweetness.
The ingredients for your happy hubby are:
D - domestic tranquility
R - respect
E - eros
A - attraction
M - mutual activities
She divides these facets up into 31 segments - one for each day of the month. She suggests that you try 'em out for your husband's birthday month or your anniversary or this month!
As you plan for a fruitful Fall, make sure you've planned for a fruitful marriage as well!
To find out more about Arlene Pellicane's ministry (ooo! and she's coming to speak at our new mom's group this Fall!) check out her awesome website (lots of great stuff there!) or purchase her book here.
To win the book, 31 Days to a Happy Husband:
1. Like/follow Motl Ministries on facebook or twitter (if you haven't already)
2. Then on fb or twitter leave a comment/picture. Arlene talks about how important it is to have fun with your spouse. When she saw my newest fb profile pic she asked if it was because I'd been reading her book. Eric and I had been at a wedding with one of those picture booths where you're supposed to use the dress up props, so it was pretty silly :) Leave a comment or share a picture of a fun (or silly) memory that you and your spouse shared! (I always LOVE to see what our readers share with us!!!)
3. For some of you who don't use facebook or twitter, you can send us an email stating that you'd like to be entered in the give-away.
4. Drawings are open from Friday to Thursday of the next week. Then each Friday we will announce the winner of last week's drawing and the new give-away. Entries are shuffled and the winner is selected randomly.
The winner of last week's give-away is Mac from Louisiana!