Marriage from A to Z

Principles for a Successful Marriage

“Pleasing Him”

The only path to pleasure is in pleasing God. - SermonQuotes

Is there anything you want to accomplish before 2020 ends? How about goals for 2021? As I pray about what I want to accomplish, my number one goal is to please Him! This statement is twofold. First, as Christians, our number one goal should be to please God. Second, if you are married another goal should be to please your spouse. Singles only have to focus on the first. However, if pleasing God is your goal be sure to hook up with someone who feels the same.

Pleasing God should be the foundation for every goal. I desire to please Him in my walk, talk and simply put, the way that I live my everyday life. How about you? When our ways please God, so many other things will fall into place. So what does it mean to please God? Pleasing God is walking in obedience to His Word, His Will and His Ways. It’s having faith and doing what Jesus wants you to do with; your body, mind, your money, your job, your family, your living arrangements, your children etc. It doesn’t mean that we are perfect but our highest priority is to please God. It is so important for us to learn the will of God and get an understanding so we can know how to please Him.

“For this reason we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding: that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God. (Colossians 1:9-10)

This verse brings me to my Second point on “Pleasing Him.” This time I am talking about pleasing your spouse. Colossians 1:9-10 reminds us that we need to have an understanding and knowledge of God’s will before we can fully please Him. Likewise, in order to fully please your spouse, you need to have an understanding and knowledge of their desires before you can fully please. A husband/wife who desires to please the Lord should also desire to please each other.

In closing, as you set goals I want to encourage you to pray and do what pleases God. God’s will always lines up with HIs Word. Pleasing Him brings peace. Lord, please help us to please you! “When a man’s ways are pleasing to the Lord, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him. “ (Proverbs 16:7).

Until next time. . .

Carolyn

“Refusing to Change”

Dag Heward-Mills Quote: “Those who refuse to change and to modify are  refusing to be recipients of the anointing.” (7 wallpapers) - Quotefancy

“I am not going to change!” Have you ever heard anyone make this statement? Perhaps they have not said it verbally, but their actions are speaking. Well, this statement is not an issue if your current actions and behavior align with the way that God wants you to live. However, if you are a Christian and your actions are contrary to the Word of God this is a problem statement. God is the only ONE who can say, “I do not change.” (Malachi 3:6) He is already perfect!

As a Christian, our goal should be to please God in all of our actions. When we realize we have said or done something wrong it is our job to make a change. God will often speak to us personally through His Word or have someone else to speak to us. When we receive godly counsel or correction, it is up to us to receive it and make a change or we can reject it and stay the same. Fully receiving it, means repenting and making a change in our actions.

As Christians, it is so important that we are in good standing with the Lord. We all have to check our actions. Here are two questions I want you to ask yourself. Is the Lord pleased with my attitude/actions? If you are married, Is my spouse pleased with my attitude/actions? If you answer no to either question, what changes do you need to make? Is an apology needed? Refusing to change is dangerous!

C – Christians must be willing to change. Jesus Christ is Our Change Agent. When we give our life to Jesus, He changes us. Some changes happen quickly and others take time. When a person gets married more change is required. A husband and wife should be willing to make changes to please God and to please one another. We need God to help us to be patient with each other in the change process. Refusing to change is not CHRIST LIKE. Get rid of the excuses like; “I am too old to change and I have always been this way or done this.” (especially when your actions do not please God) (2 Corinthians 5:17-21)

H – Humble yourself in prayer and ask God to change your heart. Ask God to make your heart line up with God’s Word and His will. A hardened heart causes a person to refuse change. (2 Chronicles 7:14 )

A – Align your actions with the Word of God. Allow God to arrest your old way of doing things and acquire new ways. When a single person gets married, there needs to be a change in behavior. Refusing to change will be a problem. (Proverbs 10:17)

N – Never say “I am not going to change or I refuse to change.” If change means being in good standing with the Lord, we must be willing to change. (Proverbs 12:15)

G – God is in the life-changing business. Get into God’s Word, it is the medicine for change. Take your medicine each day and watch God change you! If you are dealing with someone who refuses to change you definitely need to take your medicine to deal with them. (Romans 12:2)

E- Examine your ways today! Is God calling you to make a change? Has your spouse been asking you to do something that would make them happy but you refuse to change? Perhaps it’s out of your comfort zone but ask God to help you to make the change. (Proverb 14:16-17 )

Until next time. . .

Carolyn

“10 P’s to Help Parents”

If you are homeschooling or helping your children with virtual learning this is the post for you! I shared these during my virtual book launch but just in case you missed it, I want to share these principles with you.

Psalm 127:3 reminds us that our children are gifts from God and that the fruit of the womb is a reward. Let’s examine our perspective. How do you see and treat your children? Do you see them as gifts and treat them like rewards or do you see them as burdens and getting on your nerve? The pandemic has required many of us to be around our children more than ever. If you have school-aged children, you are probably assisting with virtual learning, homeschooling, or having to help with your child’s education in some way.

The following are 10 P’s to Successful Homeschooling and Virtual Learning:

  1. PRAYER – Start your day with prayer. As parents, you should have your own private time with the Lord. Also, take time to pray with children at the beginning of their school day.
  2. PLAN – Decide the curriculum that you will need or the subjects that will be taught each day. Determine the life principles that you want to teach and share with your children. Create a schedule of how you want the day to go, post it, and make your children aware. Make a plan and stick to it as much as possible. Also, establish a set time for your children to wake up, get dressed, start school, and a decent bedtime. When children don’t get the proper rest, it’s difficult to learn.
  3. PREPARE – Start the day with breakfast and be sure that your child is equipped with the necessary school supplies for the day. It’s hard to learn if you’re hungry or if you don’t have the tools that you need.
  4. POSITION – Provide a place for your child to do school work. A desk or a table where they can do their work. The position should be a place where there are very few distractions.
  5. PRACTICE – Be sure that each day your child spends time practicing in each subject. For example; 45 minutes in Math, 45 minutes in Language Arts, etc. You can also pick specific days for specific subjects.
  6. POTENTIAL – Every child has potential!! God has placed so many gifts in your child. As a parent, you are to help discover, mold, shape, and guide your child. Help them find the purpose that God has for them.
  7. PERSEVERANCE – Press through the challenges of life and the difficult days. Encourage your child not to give up when they have a difficult time learning or mastering a subject.
  8. POSITIVE – Speak well of your child and speak blessings into their life. Help to build your child’s self-esteem based on your words. Children often remember words from their parents. What are you saying to your children?
  9. PLAY – Take time out of each day to have some fun. Incorporate playtime and physical education in the day. Plan field trips!
  10. PRESENCE – Be present as much as you can. Hold your children accountable for what they should do at home and for school. Be close so that you can help guide and correct when necessary. Also, teach them how to get into the presence of God by spending time in prayer, worship, and in the Word of God.

As a parent, you only get one opportunity! Once your children are grown it’s over, we don’t get to go back and raise them again. Make the best of it! If you have not picked up your copy of my newest book, “Homeschooling from A to Z,” click on this link to purchase your autographed copy. http://www.carolyntatem.com/order.html

Until next time . . .

Carolyn

Give Birth to Something!!

On November 6, I celebrated my birthday. I can remember my mom saying when I was born, she presented me to the Lord and knew that God would do something special in my life. Everything God has done and is doing all started with one act of obedience and that was giving birth! Let’s talk about giving birth, what dream, vision, project, idea, book, ministry or assignment does God want you to birth? Have you done it?

When God places an idea, dream, or a vision in our minds we can either give birth to it or abort it. What are you doing? Often times the vision that He gives is bigger than us. This just means that we will have to rely and depend on the Lord to make the dream a reality. You see once God gives it, He wants us to have faith and do the work to make it a reality. If we would just take the first step, God will guide us to the next step. However, we must be consistent. If we take the first step and do not continue, we may never see the completion of the dream. I encourage you to give birth to whatever God has placed in your heart! Remember Ephesians 3:20 “Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us . . .” God has given you the power will you let it work? Also, that we can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens us (Philippians 4:13).

I recently heard Pastor Sarah Jakes Roberts say that it is not enough to give birth to something, after giving birth, you have to nurture it! I am giving birth to my fifth book, Homeschooling from A to Z but one of the ways that I desire to nurture it is by sharing it with as many people as I can. If I can encourage one person while they are raising and educating their children then I fulfilling the assignment that God has given me. Parenting is not easy and we all need encouragement, wisdom, and guidance on this journey.

If you haven’t heard I am giving birth to my fifth book this Saturday, November 15th. The book is titled; “Homeschooling from A to Z.” The Lord told me to write this book about four years ago. I started it but procrastinated with finishing it. I finally finished and want to share it with you through a virtual book launch. Registration is required but the event is free. You are cordially invited to attend and invite a friend. I would love to see you!

Click on this here to register!

Until next time. . .

Carolyn

“Help! I am homeschooling”

I remember saying these exact words about ten years ago. My husband and I decided that we would take our son and daughter out of the traditional school and homeschool. Well, I ended up homeschooling my son for three years (3rd grade – 5th grade) and my daughter for seven (6th grade – 12th grade). All I can say is, God will do it!

My son has just entered college, and my daughter is completing her last semester. There is so much that I learned while homeschooling for 7 years. Therefore, I have written this book to share my journey with all of those who are teaching their children at home. I know some parents are just doing it on a temporary basis while others have chosen to fully homeschool.

No matter what your situation, if you are working with your child, children or grandchild at home help is on the way. I am so excited to announce that my 5th book, Homeschooling from A to Z (Principles for Successful Homeschooling) will be in print very soon. Please feel free to share will all of your friends who are teaching their children from home. I will keep you posted.

Until next time. . .

Carolyn

“Together for 22 Years!”

On Saturday August 8th, my husband and I celebrated 22 years of marriage. I believe every year a husband and wife stays together should be celebrated. Marriage is honorable! (Hebrews 13:4). Make a big deal out of it because it is a BIG deal! I know we are in the midst of a pandemic and are limited, but you can do something to celebrate! We celebrated and enjoyed ourselves so much that we decided to continue our celebration throughout the month of August.

As we reflect on our twenty-two years, we can’t help but give God praise for keeping us. It truly is no goodness of our own. Marriage takes work and we started putting in the work before we were married with 6 months of pre-marital counseling. After the 6 months, we attended several marriage classes and conferences to learn how to do marriage God’s way. We still have not arrived and continue to work to make our marriage better. It’s funny, people will train and get equipped for every profession but want to get married with little or no training and preparation. There are so many things that we learned in counseling, conferences and classes that have helped to keep us happily together.

Here are 22 things that have helped to keep us happily together for 22 years.

  1. Start each day with prayer as a couple.
  2. Have your own individual devotional time (prayer, reading God’s Word) daily. Be devoted to loving God and loving each other.
  3. Read scripture together as a couple and strive to apply it to your marriage. (Keep God in your marriage)
  4. Kiss daily and touch daily (hold hands, back rub, foot massage, etc.)
  5. FORGIVE one another.
  6. Talk about everything: your day to day concerns, goals, desires, finances, etc. (Communication is key). Don’t go to bed angry, talk about it!
  7. When you are away for hours at a time call or send a text.
  8. Keep your house in such a way that it is inviting for you and your spouse to spend time there. (Make your bedroom inviting for rest, refreshing and for romance)
  9. Regular intimacy and love making. Do not deprive one another.
  10. Eat as many meals as you can together at the table (Decorate your table, light a candle, add color and make it a fun place to eat).
  11. Make your spouse your number one human priority and keep your family at the top of your list. (Be physically present, train your children up in the ways of the Lord).
  12. Take pictures frequently (Create memories).
  13. Remember important dates and celebrate together.
  14. When necessary, seek godly counsel and follow it. (Have an accountability couple, mentor couple and be willing to get counseling).
  15. Keep up your outward appearance and your inward (spiritual appearance).
  16. Wear your wedding rings daily. (It’s an outward sign of your covenant)
  17. Practice chivalry! (Husbands be gentlemen and open the doors (car or building) for your wife, when you are together, fill her gas tank. Wives allow your husband to treat you like a queen and vice versa.
  18. Learn when to say yes and when to say no. Watch your tone when speaking to each other.
  19. Aim to please each other and to give your spouse what she/he wants.
  20. Date each other on a regular basis. (Take rides together with just the two of you, be spontaneous, try different things)
  21. Cherish your mate and the time that you get to spend together. Treat your spouse like he/she is special and your top priority.
  22. Speak well of each other and to each other.

Until next time . . .

Carolyn

Want a LASTING Friendship?

Friendship SVG file Cutting File Clipart in Svg, Eps, Dxf, Png for ...

You were the best of friends when you got married but for some reason, it doesn’t feel the same way now. What has changed? Perhaps the friendship still exists but it needs to be cultivated. To cultivate is to improve the growth of by labor and attention. Friendships can be improved by putting in time, work and giving the other person attention. Although this week’s message is mainly about maintaining a lasting friendship within marriage, some of this information is good for friendships in general.

SINGLES: If you are single with a desire to get married, take time to develop a good friendship with your significant other before marriage. Get to really know the person without sex. In Song of Solomon 8:4 we are instructed not to arouse, stir it up or awaken love until the time is right. Marriage is the right time for sex. Sex before marriage blinds your view.

A good marriage is often sustained by a good friendship. When a husband and a wife are good friends to each other, they are more likely to be committed to the marriage. As I mentioned, a friendship needs to be cultivated. Are you putting the time and work in to building a stronger friendship with your spouse? Have you paid any attention to your spouse lately? Many of us are building closer relationships with others than we are with our spouse. Your spouse should be your top human priority!

Here are SEVEN TIPS for maintaining and cultivating a LASTING FRIENDSHIP in your marriage.

  1. Lord – Allow Jesus to be Lord in your friendship. This means that He is the Boss and Master of your marriage. Your ultimate desire is to please God in your life/friendship/marriage. Seek Him and pray together daily, include the Lord in every decision. (Colossians 3:17)
  2. Listen – Listen to each other and be responsive to what has been said. (James 1:19)
  3. Laugh – Laugh together! HAVE SOME FUN! The Bible says that a merry heart does us good like medicine. (Proverbs 17:22)
  4. Look – Look as great as you can for one another as you did when you were dating. Maintain attraction. (Song of Solomon 1:15-16 and Chapter 7)
  5. Love – Love one another. Do not deprive one another. (Ephesians 5:25 and I Corinthians 7:5)
  6. Live – To live together is to enjoy to the full. Spend time together enjoying each other’s presence. (Proverbs 5:18)
  7. Let it go – Learn to forgive quickly. Don’t hold on to grudges. (Ephesians 4:32)

A good marriage/friendship doesn’t just fall out of the sky. It must be cultivated. You must work at it every day. Be intentional about putting these seven tips into practice and you will create a lasting friendship.

Until next time . . .

Carolyn

“Separated for Seven Days”

Seven days of the week - Download Free Vectors, Clipart Graphics ...

One of the many difficulties of this pandemic is that loved ones who get sick and have to be hospitalized are hospitalized ALONE. Many hospitals are not allowing your spouse, significant other or anyone to accompany you in the hospital. This means you literally have to be dropped off and left to the care of the hospital.

On June 9th, I went into the hospital for a surgical procedure that was supposed to be in and out. It was in and out, but I experienced complications after being home for a few days. I could not keep anything on my stomach and was struck with an unbearable pain that sent me to the Emergency Room. My condition was so critical that they immediately started treating me. I spent 7 days in the hospital with no husband, mama, children, family or friends being able to accompany me. I know we are all experiencing things for the first time because of this pandemic. However, there has never been a time where any one in the family has had to be hospitalized and separated from everyone. In addition to this, the treatment for my condition was very painful. What a traumatic experience, but God!

Now for those who are Christians, we know that God is with us and that we are never alone. When I say God was with me, God made His presence known in so many ways. He reminded me of Matthew 28:20, “. . . and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Hebrews 13:5, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” This is one reason why it is good to memorize scripture and to store the Word of God in your heart. You never know when there will come a time that you can’t physically read your Word. I believe it was the prayers of family and friends that successfully carried me through the seven days.” They may not have been physically there, but I could feel their love, presence and support. (Thank you!)

I was separated for seven days, but here is what I am celebrating. God’s faithfulness and healing power because it could have been the other way. God kept me and my family in the midst of the separation and brought us back together again on Father’s Day. My husband and my children had to trust God to take care of me. I celebrate God’s protection from COVID-19 while being in the hospital. I praise God for the people who I met during my stay, and I pray that I never have to experience that again. I praise God in advance for the messages that will come out of this seven day experience. Although this was the most painful experience of my life, I realize that great things are birthed out of pain. Seven is the number of completion and after seven days of suffering and separation it was finished!

I will never be the same because of this experience. I pray for all of those who have loved ones in the hospital and those who are scheduled to go in for surgery. Let us all take it seriously when someone requests prayer for a surgery or anything else. Prayer changes things and it is so important to talk to God about everything. May God be with you and keep you!

Until next time . . . .

Carolyn

“You’re Angry, Now What?”

10 Classic Ways To Ease Your Angry Husband!

Anger is an emotion that we all have experienced at some point. One thing about it you don’t always know when this emotion will happen. It could be at work, in a store, at home, school or even at church. Perhaps it was something that was said or done that just caused you to be angry. You may even be angry right now. Many are angry because life isn’t going the way that they would like. Major things are happening in our world and you may even have some major things happening in your relationships. Anger is inevitable, but the question is; “What do you do with your anger? In other words, “How do you handle your anger?” Is God pleased?

Are you one to tell a person off, curse them out, get physical, slam the door in their face, destroy things, give the silent treatment, walk off and disappear or just simply cut the person off?

Your response to this question is very important. God is concerned with the way that you handle your anger. In Ephesians 4:26, Paul says, “Be angry, and do not sin, do not let the sun go down on your wrath.” This verse says that we can be angry, but after the anger, we should not sin or behave in such a way that doesn’t bring glory and honor to God. It is best to go somewhere and cool off then to allow your anger to get the best of you. Often times, people regret their behavior if they act upon their anger too quickly. God has given us his Spirit to help us exercise self-control.

How you handle your anger often affects other people. When you get angry with your spouse, your behavior after the anger determines a lot. If you are a parent, how you handle anger, affects your children. Not only that, wherever you are when anger occurs, you have to be mindful of your response. You could be at work or at church. Someone is always watching your response.

What to do when you are angry?

A = Allow yourself time to cool off and process your anger.

N = Never go to bed angry. Even if the issue is not resolved, release it to God and choose not go to bed angry. Don’t let the sun go down on your wrath.

G = Go to God in prayer. Cast all of your cares and feeling on the LORD. Listen for God to tell you how to respond. Being angry is often a time for us to exercise forgiveness.

E = Exemplify godly behavior. In other words, respond in a way that God would be proud. When you have God’s Holy Spirit living inside of you, He will help you!

R = REMEMBER that God sees and knows everything you say and do. Think about how your response or behavior will impact others in the present and future.

A NOTE FOR SINGLES: If you are dating/courting you need to know how your significant other handles his/her anger before you marry them. You may want to ask how did his/her parents handle their anger. This is worth discussing. It may be a factor that has shaped the way that he/she responds to anger. How one handles their anger could make or break the relationship.

Until next week . . .

Carolyn

“Can you handle the truth?”

Philosophy News | What is Truth?

What if you really want to be open and truthful with your mate but you’re afraid that they really can’t handle the truth? We are always encouraged to be open and honest when communicating. No one wants to be lied to, but can you really handle the truth? Recently we had a conversation with a group of couples about being open! We discovered that we really need God in the midst of truthfully communicating.

Genesis 2:25 NKJV says; “And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.” They were able to be naked with no shame before they sinned. After they sinned, there was shame and awkwardness. This created a barrier between Adam and Eve and in their relationship with God. This is also true in relationships. When we have nothing to hide, no barriers our communication is great. This makes it easier to open. However, we want to hide when we don’t want our spouse or God to know about things that they will not like or think favorably of. We can’t hide from God.

“You want to tell the truth, but what if your spouse can’t handle it?” First you have to be prayerful about the timing, the environment and how God would have you to share. The truth requires maturity on both parts. You need to be mature enough to tell the truth and the listener needs to be mature enough to receive the truth without anyone feeling attacked. Then what? Can we take that truth to God? He already knows it but, we need to take it to Him so that we can handle it. He is the God of all Comfort and where we are weak, He is strong. God gives us what we need to process the truth and the hard to receive matters. However, we must go to Him. We need to be able to take it to the Lord and then get direction on the next steps.

Sharing the truth and being open may require some changed behaviors on both parts. But I honestly believe that the truth is necessary in order to grow and to properly move forward. Each person needs to be able to be freed by telling the truth. You may not like the truth, and you may not like your spouse after they tell you the truth, but God. If you hang in there, you can experience a blessing in multiple areas of your marriage. The Holy Spirit is our helper and He wants to be a very present help in our marriage. Allow Him to help you to tell the truth, receive the truth and then process it in a way that will be pleasing to God. With God’s help, you can handle the truth and move forward.

May the Lord bless you to operate in truth! John 8:32 “. . . and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.

Until next week . . .

Carolyn

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