Jan 05 2010

The Love Dare

Receive this as a warning.

This forty day journey cannot
be taken lightly.

 It is a challenging and often
difficult process, but an incredibly
fulfilling one. To take this dare
requires a resolute mind and a
steadfast determination.

It is not meant to be sampled or briefly
tested, and those who quit early will
forfeit the greatest benefits. If you
will commit to a day at a time for forty
days, the results could change your
life and your marriage.

Consider it a dare, from others
who have done it before you.

 

 

THE SCRIPTURES SAY that God designed and created marriage as a good thing. It is a beautiful, priceless gift. He uses marriage to help us eliminate loneliness, multiply our effectiveness, establish families, raise children, enjoy life, and bless us with relational intimacy. But beyond this, marriage also shows us our need to grow and deal with our own issues and self-centeredness through the help of a lifelong partner. If we are teachable, we will learn to do the one thing that is most important in marriage—to love. This powerful union provides the path for you to learn how to love another imperfect person unconditionally. It is wonderful. It is difficult. It is life changing.

This book is about love. It’s about learning and daring to live a life filled with loving relationships. And this journey begins with the person who is closest to you: your spouse. May God bless you as you begin this adventure.

But be sure of this: it will take courage. If you accept this dare, you must take the view that instead of following your heart, you are choosing to lead it. The world says to follow your heart, but if you are not leading it, then someone or something else is. The Bible says that “the heart is more deceitful than all else” (Jeremiah 17:9), and it will always pursue that which feels right at the moment.

We dare you to think differently—choosing instead to lead your heart toward that which is best in the long run. This is a key to lasting, fulfilling relationships.

The Love Dare journey is not a process of trying to change your spouse to be the person you want them to be. You’ve no doubt already discovered that efforts to change your husband or wife have ended in failure and frustration. Rather, this is a journey of exploring and demonstrating genuine love, even when your desire is dry and your motives are low. The truth is, love is a decision and not just a feeling. It is selfless, sacrificial, and transformational. And when love is truly demonstrated as it was intended, your relationship is more likely to change for the better.

Each day of this journey will contain three very important elements:

First, a unique aspect of love will be discussed. Read each of these carefully and be open to a new understanding of what it means to genuinely love someone.

Second, you will be given a specific dare to do for your spouse. Some will be easy and some very challenging. But take each dare seriously, and be creative and courageous enough to attempt it. Don’t be discouraged if outside situations prevent you from accomplishing a specific dare. Just pick back up as soon as you can and proceed with the journey.

Last, you will be given journal space to log what you are learning and doing and how your spouse is responding. It is important that you take advantage of this space to capture what is happening to both you and your mate along the way. These notes will record your progress and should become priceless to you in the future.

Remember, you have the responsibility to protect and guide your heart. Don’t give up and don’t get discouraged. Resolve to lead your heart and to make it through to the end. Learning to truly love is one of the most important things you will ever do.

 

Now these three remain:
faith, hope, and love.
But the greatest of these is love

1 Corinthians 13:13

 

If I speak with the tongues of men and
of angels, but do not have love, I have
become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.

 

If I have the gift of prophecy,
and know all mysteries and all
knowledge; and if I have all faith,
so as to remove mountains,
but do not have love, I am nothing.

 

And if I give all my possessions to
feed the poor, and if I surrender my
body to be burned, but do not have love, it profits me nothing.

 

1 Corinthians 13:1–3

 

Click here to buy a copy of The Love Dare book.  

Click here for a free online journal for the full 40 day challenge.

 

Material taken from The Love Dare by Stephen and Alex Kendrick, copyright © 2009 by B&H Publishing Group. Used by permission.  Unauthorized reproduction in any format is strictly prohibited by law.

 

Jan 05 2010

Nineteen things to say to your children...

 Nineteen things to say to your children...


  1. I love you! There is nothing that will make me stop loving you. Nothing you could do or say or think will ever change that.
  2. You are amazing! I look at you with wonder! Not just at what you can do, but who you are. There is no one like you. No one!
  3. It's all right to cry. People cry for all kinds of reasons: when they are hurt, sad, glad, or worried; when they are angry, afraid, or lonely. Big people cry too. I do.
  4. You've made a mistake. That was wrong. People make mistakes. I do. Is it something we can fix? What can we do? It's all over. You can start fresh. I know you are sorry. I forgive you.
  5. You did the right thing. That was scary or hard. Even though it wasn't easy, you did it. I am proud of you; you should be too.
  6. I'm sorry. Forgive me. I made a mistake.
  7. You can change your mind. It's good to decide, but it is also fine to change.
  8. What a great idea! You were really thinking! How did you come up with that? Tell me more. Your mind is clever!
  9. That was kind. You did something helpful and thoughtful for that person. That must make you feel good inside. Thank you!
  10. I have a surprise for you. It's not your birthday. It's for no reason at all. Just a surprise, a little one, but a surprise.
  11. I can wait. We have time. You don't have to hurry this time.
  12. What would you like to do? It's your turn to pick. You have great ideas. It's important to follow your special interests.
  13. Tell me about it. I'd like to hear more. And then what happened? I'll listen.
  14. I'm right here. I won't leave without saying good-bye. I am watching you. I am listening to you.
  15. Please and Thank You. These are important words. If I forget to use them, will you remind me?
  16. I missed you. I think about you when we are not together!
  17. Just try. A little bit. One taste, one step. You might like it. Let's see. I'll help you if you need it. I think you can do it.
  18. I'll help you. I heard you call me, here I am. How can I help you? If we both work together, we can get this done. I know you can do it by yourself, but I'm glad to help since you asked.
  19. What do you wish for? Even if it's not yet time for birthday candles and we don't have a wishbone, it's still fun to hear about what you wish for, hope for, and dream about.

 

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