One of the hottest debates today is about you? One of the passionate questions in history is about you . . . how you “should” live as a girl, a woman, a wife. Even the word “should” implies coercion and control (“You should do this”, “You should do that”, “You should be this way” . . .).  We react. We know down deep that these decisions are ours to make.

No wonder we are sometimes afraid to even consider deeper; what did God plan when he created a woman? He completed the creation when she was made: “and God saw that it was good . . . ” It was good for the whole world, for the present and the future;  indeed for a future: “Therefore SHALL a man leave his father and his mother, and SHALL cleave unto his wife: and they SHALL be one flesh.” (Genesis 2:24)

The way many men treated women on the pages of the Bible was not God teaching them to marry many wives, abuse, beat a wife, a daughter . . . any woman.  It was wrong then, it is now.  The mistreatment of women through history perfectly proves God’s warning after Adam and Eve sinned. “He shall rule over thee” was not a command to Adam.  This was a warning directly to Eve . . . to all women.  Nowhere in the Bible does God tell men to control, teach, train or speak for their wives or tell them what to do! You, a woman, think capably because you are given this power.  You, a woman, create because God does.  If you are married, you are a guide and a ruler of a family.” That is because you care, you are capable and you are gifted. (I Ti.5:14)

You have amazing power to “make a marriage” because of your spiritual, intuitive personality.  You have equally amazing ability and satisfaction to “make a house into a home” because down deep, you care about this deeply and it is your style!

Think positively about who you are: a female, created in the image of God.  You have the essence of ability, creativity and influence! Don’t run fearing that God is “out to put you in bondage” of some kind (though there are religions and men and cultures who do)! “If the Son makes you free, you are free indeed” (John 8:36) . . .

Whatever else you do, whatever your style and gifts, you can bless your marriage and home because you keep your heart there.

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As Eric and I brought up three sons, our family felt complete.  I was brought up in a family of ten; a family of five was just right!

All the years of doing our best to be parents kept us so involved that I didn’t think of what having daughters would be like…until now! The girls added to our lives, as our three sons got married have brought such happiness that I must commend these girls today!

The first to enter our family was Kristen: she married Josiah after he was transferred to Texas from Afghanistan in the Navy.  She has such a gentle spirit, that her powerful gifts surprise you; many of them stem from her computer skill.  She makes things happen.  Their four children are participants in those abilities as we see them grow via pictures from our distant State.  Kristen has been in the trenches, so to speak, with four children, Jonah, Lydia, Isaac and Annabeth.  She focuses on them and on her Husband as if all of them are “the only one”!  She is a wise, loving, fun, wife and mother!

The next to bring a treasure into our Clan was Joshua.  He married Tania:  who is both deeply wise and honest with such compassion, you feel blessed when she speaks.  She is able to do many things at once (like care for sixty people in her home for an evening).  She has a big world and she handles it in stride. Her gifts as a teacher are amazing as there is always a technique ready to bring the student around.  She and Josh are thoughtful and loving and seem to be the center of a large world…Their three girls, Becca and Jessi and Tamra are blessed!

Roxy and Zach married last.  He found her when he was doing routine banking…and just couldn’t forget that girl.  He sent her a note…she responded.    Roxy has intuitive wisdom, she is a communicator, and ends up saying or writing what she thinks: her care for making a big family close and communicative goes a long way in creating a family that feels special.  When Lilly was born seven years ago, another communicator was born.  Roxy’s interest in medicine and pharmacy began when she donated one of her kidneys to her mother…and so all of us continue to be enriched by all the rest of us.

I must tell you:  they are an answer exactly to our prayers.

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What all women want may be very similar.  One reason for believing in our similarities is that we are created in God’s own image.

His creation is beautiful, self sustaining, and intricate.  His highest creation, you and I and all mankind is intricate: physically, spiritually, mentally, and emotionally.  There must be “typicalness” to us.

My goals very general and rather vague goals are:  I desire to please God and obey Him from my heart.  I desire to be a good wife, to please my husband and enhance his life.  I desire to be beautiful inside and out.  I desire to become all I can become: developing the gifts and abilities I’ve been given and using all of them.

Do you agree?  Do you identify?

We are, as the Bible says,  “fearfully and wonderfully” made.  But intricate as we are, as hard to comprehend as our hearts and minds and bodies are, we are created by God.  So we are understood!  We are understood by God.  We are loved, as we love our children, only more so.  We are planned for.  We are comforted.  We are watched over.

God provides the way for us to “make” ourselves into somebody, “that our daughters may be as cornerstones, polished after the similitude of a palace.”  We are free to study, think, grow, plan and devise our way.  And His face shines on you and me when all of the above is happening. (Psalm 144:12)

“The LORD bless and keep you: the LORD make His face shine on you, and be gracious to you.  The LORD lift up His countenance upon you, and give you peace.” (Numbers 6:24-26)

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I’ve been indignant for the woman a long time. The “adulterous” woman in John 8 was “taken in the act” of adultery. “And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst, they say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act.” Where was the man? It takes a man AND woman for adultery!

Can’t you see this woman? Stooped, bent over, waiting for the worst? Jesus had the answer . . . again! I smile to myself as Jesus gave the men surrounding him their answer.

His answer was, “He that is without sin, let him cast the first stone.” (see John 8:3-7)

Moses and the law commanded stoning for anyone caught in adultery, but they brought only her. Someone caught them “in the act”. They caught them. Where was the man? Why did they not bring them? And the men themselves knew that Jesus knew: they were all guilty: every man of them left beginning from the eldest to the last.

There is freedom in the Bible for us all, not just for men but for women too: freedom for all.

Jesus said to her, “Go and sin no more.” She was released . . . released to start new. So are we!

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Success means many things to people, but there is an “anchor”, a final word to pin your hopes and dreams to: a straightforward process. Can it be simple?

Success is a process of going in the right direction. Get your definition from God. Anchor your definition of success in the wisdom of Scripture. You and I can live in an assured state of progress toward it. It is for me a growing peace in my head and heart. It means a sense of God’s presence. Prosperity is that quiet conviction that the Bible is true.

God spoke directly to Joshua. He was new as a leader after Moses died. God told him: “This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth; but you shall meditate therein day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you shall have good success. Have not I commanded you? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be dismayed: for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua must have been afraid. But God came to him with this process.

Meditate day and night on this Book. Can we completely trust this method? Dare we? God tells us: “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.” (Isaiah 55:9). Why not believe! What do we have to lose!

There are sixty six books. It’s a lot to take in, but you will never, no never be bored. Paul wrote, “For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.” (Romans15:4).

This meditation helps me every day in doing my art, learning about healthy living and exercise, understanding more of the intricacies of my husband’s thoughts and ideas and gifts. It conditions me to be energized by the lives of our sons and daughters in law and grandchildren. How on this earth do all of these things come together? It comes from growing in understanding of where all important things come from.

Hope for success and prosperity is ours. It is a continuous process of learning to focus, by mediating on God’s word. Meditation is like a cow chewing the cud. Mull over the truth in the Bible; your life will amazingly change.

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