Wednesday, April 18, 2018

What does "piece by piece" equal?

I am compelled to share these thoughts with my adult children as well as anyone who is in a relationship.  The relationship does not have to be a marriage.  It could be a parent-child relationship, an employee-employer relationship, a bff relationship - I think you get the idea.

Sometimes, without intending to, we destroy our relationships "Piece by Piece."
Truly - by back-biting, ignoring one another, discouraging one another, putting others before our partners, disregarding that person, thinking the worst of that person, speaking "smack" against that person in front of others or to others.....
You fill in the ways, "Piece by Piece," the ways and the words that you and I have done or said that certainly do not build up and "shore up" our relationships....

Go ahead -- reflect now --- and share your reflections below in the comments.....
Piece by Piece: How have you torn down a loved one? And what did that Piece by Piece equal?
Maybe someone will see themselves in your comments too....... and reflect.....and ponder.....

Then - watch this Kelly Clarkson video referenced below.
(I saw it while reading this blog post: https://protectyoungminds.org/2017/03/16/reason-porn-bad/)

Background of the video:  The author of the blog states..."She is singing Piece by Piece.  In this song she tells the story of being abandoned by her father at the age of six and rejected by him again when she was older.  When she became successful, her father tried to return to her life.
But HER HUSBAND showed her that a genuine father's love can be truly healing.
(And I dare you to watch this to the end and not shed a tear!)"

Google this title or copy and paste this youtube title your search bar:
Kelly Clarkson - Piece by Piece (American Idol the Farewell Season) 
This is one of the judges reactions to her song....


So, Kelly's father; Piece by Piece, broke her heart.
And, Kelly's husband; Piece by Piece, restored her heart.

And so I ask you and I ask myself:
How can I be sure that, Piece by Piece, I am building up my wife or my husband or my child or my mother or my father or my brother or my sister?

Now - I ask you to comment below:
How can you build up your spouse, Piece by Piece?
And what will that Piece by Piece equal?

Which will it be for you?
Ponder a moment -
Will your Piece by Piece equal pain and destruction?
OR
Will your Piece by Piece equal protection and restoration?

As always - it is your choice and mine --

Make the right choice my precious "children" - You will be amazed at the results!

With love and honor and respect for all of you!
Kathy aka wife, mom, friend


Thursday, March 15, 2018

Really??? One flesh???



Oh the mystery...
I just finished "The Lacemaker" by Laura Frantz.  There were so many phrases and quotes in this text that just resonated with my marital heart!  I am compelled to share (as usual!), with my adult children - but also with any fellow sojourners pondering the value of marriage....

This is one of the phrases; spoken by the groom of his beloved new wife, on their wedding day.
"... Radiant.  
This was his bride.  
The woman God had created for him since time began. 
The mother of his children, whenever they came.  
She was his, come the storm.  Come the war.  Come what may. 
Anwylyd (which mean Beloved in Welsh)."

This picture I have posted, is of my groom and I on our wedding day in 1978.
That means this is our 40th year of marital bliss.
Marital bliss?
Well - not always.

But foundationally, I still feel like Paul's new bride.
 
In his love, I am radiant (even when I don't feel like I am).

In his love, I will always be his bride (even when I don't feel like a beautiful bride).

In his love, I know that through our marriage vows, through the years, through the ups and downs, the joys and the sorrows - I was created for my groom since time began.

And I know that, obviously, I am truly the mother of all four of our amazing children.

And I am his -
Come the storm. Come the "war." Come what may... I am Paul's beloved, his Anwylyd.

And I can face this world with his hand in mine and my hand in his - one flesh...


May you recognize the blessing of this mystery of "one flesh."
It is true and it is precious --- and so we proceed hand in hand.
Never take this "one flesh" for granted - it is a gift from the Father's Hand and Heart!

Onward and Upward, hand in hand;
Kurt & Stephanie, Jana & Adam,
Scott & Kim, and Mark & Courtney

Love you all so very much!


Saturday, September 16, 2017

Challenges!!!  In marriage?  Do they ever go away?
Nope!

I just read this in "The 7 Rings of Marriage" from a Youversion app reading plan:
"We should expect challenges to happen, but be encouraged by them because we know God is creating something great."  

[Really Lord? Challenges create something great?]

Read on  ....
"Spend some time in prayer giving thanks to God for what He's doing in your marriage.  Encourage each other to continue on, not getting tired of the work and the challenges..." 

[oh but Lord - I do get tired and weary.... I have a sense that we all do.
And I ponder...
Yet this I know; when I encourage Paul and he encourages me, then we are building and growing and foundational and happier and more content than when we are "at" each other and tearing each other down.]

The author of the devotional ends with these thoughts,
"...but be expectant and excited about what will be the result."

[The result of what?  Oh yes!
Through challenges we are encouraging our mates, building them up, cheering them on, loving them when they don't seem very lovable, accepting them, being on the same team as they are, thinking the best of them rather than the worst....
And God is creating something really great in us and in our marriages!]

The takeaways?
Let those challenges pull you both closer together rather than pulling you apart....
Encourage each other through them....
Remember that God is creating something really great!

Truly - I am
Remember to look for the rainbow!
praying for all of you and your marriages.

Be encouraged and excited and expectant as you travel through the great times and the challenges together!

Onward and Upward we go!




Monday, July 17, 2017

What is the real point of communication?

Hi Beloved Ones -



And we continue this "communication" thing --- This picture of Derek kissing his little cousin, Jackson comes to mind.  He is building relationship - loving on his cousin - demonstrating his love - Do I demonstrate my love to Paul?

So,  I bring up  and ponder more quotes from Chapter 10 in "The Twelve Pillars" by Jim Rohn and Chris Widener....

Listen to this --

"Communication is hard!!! But one of the reasons that it is hard is because so many people aren't looking at it as a practice wherein two people are trying to find common ground."
(my thinking here ---
What a novel idea!!!  Communicating to find common ground rather than MY ground!!!)

"Most of the time, each person is fighting to get the other person to give up their ground and come over to his or her ground. Then it is a turf battle instead."
(Reflect here my friends --
Is this sentence above describing your perspective???)

(A "TURF BATTLE!" I have been there -- lots in fact!!!! I just didn't know that's where I/we were! Where I, perhaps, took us????)

"Instead (of a "turf battle")
each should look for the COMMON GROUND."
(What a novel idea!!!!
Common Ground??? - Is it possible??)

And so I ask you to ponder this with me --and with your partner.......

To clarify;  Our homework is this - When you have your date-night, ask you spouse -
Do I "feed" a turf battle or do I build "common ground????"

Onward, Upward and Outward!

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

What's the best way to communicate?

Hello Beloved Readers -
So, what is the best way to communicate?
I think of my grandsons and how they communicate - Joshua (5) and Derek (22 months) and even the babies: Jax (10 months old) and Charlie (9 months old); all of them look so intently at the person interacting with them. They watch, they wait, they listen closely.  Then they respond - Just look at Joshua and Charlie!  They can't keep their eyes off of each other - Total Joy! Total Togetherness!



Sounds so very simple -- and then I look at married folks (including myself) and I observe -

How do they/I communicate?  Do I keep my eyes on my husband, Paul when he is talking to me?  Or, do I pull out my phone - (which by the way totally closes off all communication!)

Or am I distracted about  many things (like what I want to say next to "convince" him that my idea or solution is better than his!?)

"The Twelve Pillars" by Jim Rohn and Chris Widener ( http://chriswidener.com/products/12-pillars-paperback/ ) got me to thinking about this communication thing, especially applying it to communication in marriage.
My thoughts are in the parenthesis following their quotes.  I hope it helps you see my thinking --

Listen (really listen) to this wisdom from Jim and Chris ---
"...the most important thing about communication is listening. ... Sure we have listening-skills seminars"...
 (like how to have the right body language to communicate your point...etc.)

..."But it isn't the skill that is the most important. "
(It's NOT??? -- we have so many seminars on that listening skill thing!!  Have I been "listening" to poor advice or incomplete advice??? - again!!!)

"It is the 'character' behind the skill.  First and foremost, you have to care enough and value the other person enough to want to listen....."

Now to my final thoughts on this entry ---
So precious adult-children of mine and beloved readers, ponder the above info---
And think about this --
Do you care enough and value the person enough to want to listen -- really listen???

Think of the joy and togetherness in Josh and Charlie's pic above ---
I want that joy, always, when communicating with my "husbud"---my Paul ---

I will continue this extremely important "communication theme" in the next few entries -
And until then --

As always - Onward and Upward fellow sojourners!

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Got any good marriage advice/wisdom to pass on?


Almost 39 years of marriage! And we could still use some great advice and wisdom! 
So many weddings this month! I find myself being asked over and over.. what is some good marriage advice? And so i come to my Twitter, Blog and Facebook family and ask these questions -

To anyone who has been married for 10+ years and is still happy in their relationship, what lessons would you pass down to others if you could? What is working for you and your partner? And if you’re divorced, what didn’t work previously?

Ready set go!!!!

Monday, November 14, 2016

Who's protecting my marriage???

I took this picture in NJ and think it is so applicable to a marriage relationship path.  It is a path that has to be protected. Sometimes we can leave the beautiful gate open for others to join us for dinner or game night etc.

And other times - on a regular basis - we have to close the gate and protect our marriage path and walk alone, just the two of us.

So "Who IS protecting your marriage path?"

Just take a look at these sentences and phrases for wise and practical answers to that question!


Love - from the center of who you are.

Be real - don't fake it.

Run (for your life!) - from evil (recognize that sometimes we do says things intending to hurt the other person --- RUN RUN RUN from that mentality.  
You are a "we" now.  
When we say mean and hurtful things to one another we essentially are hurting our own selves.

Hold on for dear life!  -  to "good" and to each other. This marriage "thing" is a wild ride!  Hold on to each other!!!!  
It's more fun that way!

Be good friends - I smile as I ponder this phrase because my Paul is my BFF.  He loves me unconditionally... makes me smile.  Makes me secure.  Makes me understand this mysterious marriage relationship better.

Love deeply - This takes time and energy and consciousness - 
Well worth it in every area: communication, finances, and especially intimacy.

Practice playing second fiddle -- The best phrase for me. 
On your next "date" -- Ponder it with your mate.  
What does it look like for your marriage? 

To your marriages and relationships Kurt & Stephanie, Jana & Adam, 
Scott & Kim, Mark & Courtney
I am so proud of you, my children, and love you with all my heart.

And to all the readers and "ponderers" out there - 
Read and heed these words and protect those relationship paths.

Onward and Upward to my beloved sojourners :)