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Scripture

4 Ways to Be a Better Truth-Teller: Part 1

By | Scripture, Self Reflection | One Comment

“Peace if possible, truth at all costs.” – Martin Luther Part of loving like Jesus is being truthful. Jesus had a way of being relentlessly honest, while still extending tenderness and grace toward those he came in contact with. He was completely authentic, and expected the same of others. But radical honesty isn’t so easy for most of us. In fact, we’re often more content to remain–at least, in part–unseen and unheard in favor of avoiding the difficulties that can come with complete honesty. But if we’re honest with ourselves, we understand that real love can’t fully manifest without complete…

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How to Become More Approachable Through Humility

By | Scripture, Self Reflection | 4 Comments

Without a doubt, Jesus was the most approachable person who ever walked the Earth. He was tuned into the people on the fringes–those who were most likely to be outcast and excluded. Jesus was shockingly accessible to everyone, including people who were considered “undesirables”. He certainly wasn’t like the other “holy men” of his time. In fact, His accessibility made them livid. That’s because the rabbis and priests of Jesus’s time operated on principles of isolation and exclusion, holding everyone at arm’s length. In contrast, Jesus welcomed everyone with open arms. The Greek word for approachable is parresia, which means…

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5 Tips for Loving Others Without Judgment

By | Scripture, Self Reflection | 7 Comments

Loving like Jesus did requires the ability to extend grace–in other words, to love others without judgment. For most of us, this is much easier said than done. It’s easy to use judgmentalism as a way to mask our own insecurities and elevate ourselves above others. Being judgmental makes us conceited and self-righteous. It’s an addictive delusion that artificially boosts our worth. Never mind the Bible’s words: “Do not judge, or you too will be judged.” This is one hard habit to break. A judgmental, self-righteous attitude prevents us from giving grace. Luckily, it is possible to shed our judgmental…

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Selfishness in Reverse: How to Lovingly Give More of Yourself

By | Scripture, Self Reflection | 4 Comments

“Selfish people are, by definition, those whose activities are devoted to bringing themselves happiness. Yet, at least as judged by others, these selfish people are far less likely to be happy than those whose efforts are devoted to making others happy.” – Dr. Bernard Rimland, Ph.D. What does it mean to be self-giving? I (Les) like to think of it as selfishness in reverse. It’s a quality we must have if we want to love like Jesus did. Selflessness gives without the expectation of repayment or appreciation. It’s something we extend out of kindness and compassion. It’s easy to get…

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3 Ways to Demonstrate Love Mindfully

By | Scripture, Self Reflection | 2 Comments

Mindfulness, or attentiveness, is a practice that can be applied to our entire lives to help us be more fully engaged with both ourselves and others. When we fail to be mindful of what’s happening inside and around us, we’re prone to a sort of “perceptual blindness.” This means that we could easily be missing the obvious–especially when it comes to the people we encounter. When we’re too wrapped up in our own activities and to-do lists, we’re missing others’ needs. Then, we leave a gap where we could have provided help, attention, affection, guidance, or love. Loving mindfully is…

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How to Love Like Jesus

By | Scripture, Self Reflection | 7 Comments

“Observe how Christ loved us. Love like that.” – Ephesians 5:2 Loving like Jesus is the best way to live. When we love like Him, we can step outside ourselves and clearly see our loved ones and their needs. We can shed layers of selfishness, resentment, anxiety, pettiness, and entitlement. Most of all, we can rise above our human imperfections and step into transcendent love. Jesus’s model of love challenges us to stop settling for anything less than “the most excellent way.” If you want to love like Jesus, read on. Can anyone really love like Jesus? When it comes…

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Sex in Marriage: What’s the Purpose?

By | Scripture | 64 Comments

“Sex has become one of the most discussed subjects of modern times. The Victorians pretend it did not exist; the moderns pretend that nothing else exists.” – Fulton J. Sheen Our kids–and their kids, and their grandkids–won’t remember what it’s like to wake up in a world where sex isn’t advertised around the clock. They won’t remember a time when pornography wasn’t readily available on every electronic device, for all ages. And the truth is, it may be hard to recall a time like that ourselves. That’s why it’s critical for us to remember and cherish God’s purposes for sex….

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Two Ways to Fire Up Passion in the Bedroom

By | Communication, Scripture, Self Reflection, Time | 14 Comments

There’s more to sex than mere skin on skin. Sex is as much spiritual mystery as physical fact. I Corinthians 6:16 The loss of passionate romance is a common complaint in marriage. It seems that once the confetti and rice are swept away and the last of the wedding cake is put in the freezer, so is the couple’s passion. But marriage in no way requires passion to be put on ice. Love grows less exciting with time for the same reasons that the second run on a fast toboggan slide is less exciting than the first. But as any…

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When Not to Talk: 7 Ways to Decide Whether Silence is Best (Part 2)

By | Communication, Conflict, Scripture | 6 Comments

“He who guards his mouth and his tongue guards his soul from troubles.” – Proverbs 21:23 Being silent when you and your spouse are dealing with an unresolved issue is a difficult choice to make, but sometimes, it’s the best choice for the health of your marriage. Last week, we began a two-part series on holding your tongue–and gave you three questions to ask yourself that will help guide your communication decisions. Today, we’re sharing four more. 4. Is one of you being unreasonable? (Or both?) When we’re debating issues that are highly emotional for one or both of us,…

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When Not to Talk: 7 Ways to Decide Whether Silence is Best

By | Communication, Conflict, Scripture | 6 Comments

“When there are many words, transgression is unavoidable, but he who restrains his lips is wise.” – Proverbs 10:19 Communication is one of the most important and essential building blocks to a healthy marriage and lifelong love. But sometimes, we can complicate the situations we face with our spouse by over-communicating–and it’s times like these when we need to be able to read each situation and decide whether or not we should continue talking about it. Silence can be a balm when we’re dealing with issues that are highly emotional, unresolved, or which have brought us to a stalemate with…

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