The Difference between Men & Women in Broken Relationships

Bobbye and I asked a friend of ours to be interviewed on our daily radio show. Her name is Donna Scott and she is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. Today she came to our office for the recordings. Even though we know Donna, her kindness and sensitivity to share in her clients’ pain and then to wisely and calmly provide counsel to those in broken relationships amaze us. God is using her and mightily moving through her to repair broken hearts and mend broken relationships.

On a side bar conversation, I asked her what the biggest difference is between men and women when struggling in their relationship? Her answer may surprise you…

“When people come in to get healing help for relationship wounds, I notice a difference between the types of injuries found in men versus women in their moments of brokenness. As I counsel men, they generally tend to intellectualize their pain through interpreting life events. They typically sense that no matter what they do, it is not ‘good enough.‘ These feelings frequently create a sense of helplessness and futility. Unfortunately, it is usually manifested as anger or indifference to their partner. Women, on the other hand, are likely to experience their emotional hurt as ‘I’m not worth fighting for.’ This hurt results in lowering her sense of worth and security in the relationship. Her pain is sometimes displayed as anger or nagging. Neither understand that they actually have the same need in common; It is the longing to love and be loved by the one who matters most.”

We all want to be loved. We may not be very good at communicating how we want to be loved and we might not be very good at explaining why we are acting out or withdrawing but the bottom answer is the same.. to be loved. “For God so loved…” and because “God first loved us” we can love. I am certainly thankful our relationship with God is based on His love.

Donna Scott’s contact information is http://www.DonnaScottTherapist.com or (619) 500-4653. Calling her may be your first step in learning how to express love and how to receive love from God, others and yourself.

Thank you Donna for sharing your heart with us today and loving others through God’s gift of counseling.

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Caution: My Opinion Might Offend Christians

I have waited a week before writing my personal insights into last weekend’s event that we hosted, “Real Issues-Real Answers” or as some preferred to call it, “The 4 Deadly D’s”. In case you have not heard of it, we (Bobbye & Tonilee) held a one-day event just for women. The goal was to bring hope, encouragement and an opportunity for help in one or more of the following areas: Debt, Death, Divorce and Depression. We invited experts in the specific fields including financial advisors, certified counselors, therapists, debt management specialists and a Christian family practice law office. Various other resources were also available onsite including our ministry team, a group of Godly women who have served alongside us at many women’s events and Bible studies. The number one goal: offer HOPE to hurting women; not just the right or righteous answers, but real, honest, open, and maybe not so righteous answers. The second goal: offer this event to women who may not know the Lord personally; in other words, make it an outreach to the community. Ah…the second goal seemed so simple, yet has shown itself not so simple at all. Why? Because some of us Christians really do not understand what an outreach to the “world” actually looks like.

Dare I say that some of our Christian friends just could not understand how we could host an event and not say that the answer is always…”Jesus is all you need.” You see, this event was not about the Christian-ese, pat answers to all of life’s problems, such as “just pray harder,” “have more faith,” or “join a small group.” This event was about real life issues that quite frankly do not fall into perfect lines of Christian doctrine. How many of us have tried to righteously work out our problems and still wonder where God is? Why not be honest from the start? Why not go out and try to help people first and then tell them that there is a God who loves them? Why not be an example of the love of Christ, instead of the one preaching about love, yet condemning your brothers and sisters? Who are we kidding as Christians? Where is our true witness in the world? My opinion…we only want to witness within the comforts of our own churches, groups or circles. And, what effect does that have? We all make each other feel good. We are supposed to edify the Body of Christ, so that we can go out and be a light in this dark world. We had Christians at this event who thought we should have been more “Christian-ese”…I think we offended some of them. We had some Christians who sat on the sidelines while the room had women in it who did not know the Lord, but we were the ones expected to preach from the platform.

The event itself was hugely successful and the women who came have more than expressed their appreciation. There are requests for future events that started almost immediately. Why? Because we need HOPE. We need encouragement. We need HELP. Jesus came and He fed the hungry, healed the sick and set the captives free…then, He offered them everlasting life. That is our heart in doing this type of event on the 4 D’s and we will continue to pray that we can help make a difference in the lives of hurting women…and ultimately lead them to the everlasting answer in Jesus Christ.

-Bobbye

God Got Divorced

Our Real Issues Real Answers Event was last Saturday. Every single response card came back positive. Yet, despite all the advertising, the event caught people off guard. Common words on the response cards were “thank you for being so honest” and “I appreciated hearing from women dealing with real life.” Our objective was definitely accomplished.

The topic that brought the most conversation and awakening was “divorce.”  We did not talk about marriage. We spoke on divorce. Many times in a Christian event, the emphasis is on marriage. Not this time. There are too many of us who are divorced, were divorced or contemplating a divorce. We can hear sermons all day long on why to stay in a marriage so we addressed divorce.

I heard a common statement after the divorce talk as women said, “I am standing for my marriage.”  In other words, regardless of how the relationship is or the choices of their husbands, these women took a stand to remain committed to their marriage. Well, that is great when two people decide to make a commitment to do that.  But I couldn’t believe the stories that I heard about women standing for their marriage when their husbands have left them years ago. One woman told me with tears in her eyes that she was “standing for her marriage” to a man who left her years ago and he has remarried and now has other children.  I looked at her and said, “That’s delusional. That is total bondage.” When is enough…enough. At what point do we get a clue and move on in our lives. Aren’t there other things to pray about and cry over that God will bless than the things that God is not blessing?

In 1 Corinthians 7:15-16, Paul tells us that if the unbeliever leaves you, let him go. Why? Because Paul continues to say that God has called us to peace. If someone leaves you, he suddenly does not believe in you or your marital commitment you both made before man, the State and God. Move on, especially if he is remarried. Be set free. There is liberty with the Lord.

If marriage was that spiritual in nature, why would the Lord tell us that we are freed to marry someone else if our present spouse dies? (Romans 7:3) Marriage is bound on earth. There is no eternal ramification associated with marriage. Jesus told us that we will be like the angels in heaven. (Matthew 22:30)

I don’t understand why we won’t allow the dead to bury the dead. We are carrying around dead relationships and expecting God to resurrect them. He did not promise to resurrect circumstances, titles, marital status or relationships; He promised to be faithful to You as a person for eternity. God is not going to ask you, “What have you done with your marriage?” You stand before God some day alone.

In marriage, there are two wills. God does not hold you responsible for your husband’s will or ways. Our prayers cannot control any other person and our scripture verses cannot control God. How are you living for Him personally and individually?  We are wasting precious time by having an earthly perspective and not an eternal Kingdom perspective. It is time to be forgiven, set free and time to walk in the liberty that the Lord has promised you…on earth as it is in heaven.

Let me tell you… God never answered one of my prayers for my marriage but He answered multiple other prayers that I was praying at the same time. No one was more submissive, prayerful, honoring, respectful and willing to be obedient to the Lord and to my husband than me in that marriage. I was convinced that a miracle would happen because I prayed the right prayers and quoted the right verses. I was convinced that a miracle would happen because God answered all of my other prayers. I prayed for people to get saved, they got saved. I prayed for promotions I did not deserve, I got the promotions. I prayed for resolution in conflicts. Guess what? Resolved the next day. I prayed for my husband to want to eat dinner with me…. Nope!  Nada, Zilch. When my husband left me, God was not surprised which is why I believe He never gave me one promise or answered one prayer.

God loves You. He hates divorce because of what it does to the people involved and knows all about it because He got a divorce (Jeremiah 3:8).  Did you know that God wrote His people a certificate of divorce when they turned their backs on Him? If God did not change the heart of His beloved (the nation, Israel), why do we think that God will heal all our marriages?   He understands your hurt and He knows your pain. God knows you by name and He wants to be your first love and the lover of your soul. Are you willing to lay down your desires and be about God’s desire? He came to set the captives free. You are no longer in bondage. Get out, lift your eyes up and see your God reaching out to you. He is willing to help you get through this. Are you willing to let it go?

Please…if you are reading this blog and know of someone making these kinds of choices, please support them. They are going through a lot and need your encouragement and your kindness to get them through. God has blessed us all! Let’s start living like we believe it.

—TL

Preparing for August 22nd

As we are preparing for the upcoming “Real Issues Real Answers” event on August 22nd, I have been more acutely aware of the Deadly D’s that we will be discussing than ever before.  One of the D’s is death and I have been personally touched by death this 

summer, as my most precious Buddy died on July 1st. He was diagnosed with 

cancer on June 5th and the prognosis by this point was terminal. As with pets and sickness, we as owners must take on responsibilities that test us in difficult ways. For me, I had to know when to end Buddy’s life. 

I had to make a decision that would take him away from me, all because I loved him too much to see him suffer. His cancer had spread throughout his body and though I wanted to keep him as long as I could, I also knew that I could not stand to see him suffer in pain. Death has impacted me greatly and his absence has been deafening at times. By God’s grace, I have grown stronger each day and I know that the Lord has plans beyond what I can see. This is the hope and encouragement that I personally bring to others. In death, there is resurrection and life. Jesus promises us that He is the Resurrection and the Life.

Buddy 1

 

  << (Buddy and his classic “Elvis Impression”)

 

 

 

 

 

Another “D” that has impacted me personally is “debt.” I have dealt with financial issues in so many ways this past year, including with my family. My sister has struggled greatly this summer and we have talked and prayed regularly about her situation. My mother lost most of her retirement when the market collapsed and is moving into a subsidized retirement community. On and on it goes but again, I find strength in God’s grace. I find hope in places that I cannot always understand. I have seen the Lord’s faithfulness in all of these situations and I know that He has a plan. I look forward to much more than what I see today.

Does all of this sound Depressing…another Deadly D that will be discussed at the event on August 22nd? Most of us recognize the symptoms of depression but how many of us really talk about it honestly?  I know that for myself, it is not easy to just share that openly but it is comforting when I hear others share their struggles, as we are comforted together. I feel very strongly about this event because I believe we, as women, need each other and need to be able to share openly together. Somehow, there is healing in being able to come together and feel safe in an environment that cares, not condemns. Where are those places today? I hope we can provide those opportunities more and more in the future. HOPE is what we all need.