Curing vs. Healing

pills

As a niche blogger addressing sexless marriages, most of my writing has been about bad situations that husbands (and denied wives) find themselves in. And as someone who suffers from that very male affliction, I-Can-Fix-This-itis, many of my posts not only address the problems, but give advice and solutions on how to work to address and change these situations. I’m the type of person that believes it doesn’t matter how much you want to talk about The Nail, removing the nail will solve the problem of headaches.

I do, however, understand that fixing is not the same as restoring, that curing is not the same thing as healing. They just aren’t the same. Continue reading

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Traditional Vows, part 2

trad vow2

In my last post, I addressed myself to husbands on the promise made in the traditional wedding vow. This week, I am going to examine the vow that brides made to their husbands, but this vow actually predates the Book of Common Prayer, which was the source of the husband’s promise to worship with his body.

But before I do, I’d like to expand on why I think this topic and these ideas matter. Last year, I wrote a series of posts on the Apostles’ Creed, explaining that the Creed is more than just something to recite, but is the basic confession of belief of Christians in all times and places, and that it is important for Christians to know what they believe.

And I found out that I was, in my own small pond, re-inventing the wheel. Just a couple of months ago, I came across a book by the late Charles Colson entitled The Faith, and I find that this book is a warning about an ignorant Church, not knowing what it believes or why. The kicker for me was that it was published in 2008, seven years before I started writing about the Creed. This sentence, from the first chapter, sums up the dilemma of trying to live as a Christian today:

How can a Christianity that is not understood be practiced?

And, I believe, the same goes for marriage… Continue reading

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Traditional Vows, part 1

trad vows1

 

When I was a younger Christian, I enjoyed modern worship, as it was very emotive. However, in the past 15-20 years, as I’ve gotten older, I find that I appreciate more and more the stability and meaning of older forms of worship and prayer. For me, there is a connectedness in the creeds that we say; after all, I am making the same confessions of faith as Luther, Wesley, Zinzendorf, Spener, Wycliffe and Hus. I sing the same faith that Watts, Newton, and Charles Wesley sang in their hymns. I find that standing in tradition helps to keep me grounded in my faith.

Which brings me to another tradition, the wedding vow. I know that it is all the rage to have couples write their own vows, but the more I have thought about it, I wonder if this trend is somehow connected with the degradation of marriage as a whole in today’s society. Think about it; marriage has lost its place as an institution, and even lost its definition. After all, the world tells us that all of the following are just modern permutations of marriage:

Serial marriage
Open marriage
Polygamous marriage
Same-sex marriage

I think we can agree that all these, and more, aren’t ‘redefining marriage’ so much as pummeling the very concept of marriage, reshaping into an unrecognizable mass of mess on the anvil of today’s perverted values. And I’m wondering if Christians aren’t somehow complicit in this degrading of marriage. Doesn’t our redefining the promises of marriage, rewriting the contract so to speak, indicate a desire to create marriage in our own image, rather than God’s? Continue reading

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Almost Finished!

“Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn.” Rom. 12:15

Rejoice with me! Three month ago, I announced that I was taking a break from blogging in order to concentrate on a family project, the compiling of memories, stories, photos and recollections of my 88-year-old mother.

While the project is not completed, my task is pretty much done. Just this evening, I received, via email, a .pdf proof copy of the book from my son. My son works for a printer/publisher in Tennessee, and he undertook laying out my text and photos for the book. Scrolling through the .pdf my son sent, I was exhilarated to see what I’ve been working on for several years starting to take final form. I’m telling you, my week is made, and it’s only Monday!

After a final read-through and proof, we are going to be able to go to press this month, and Recollections Of A Storyteller will be in the hands of my mom and my brothers and sister.

CSL

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“I’m TAG-ged, But You’re Out!”

tagged

(Just a warning: lots of links. I mean, LOTS of links.)

I know that football is supposedly America’s favorite sport but I love to watch baseball. Baseball fans know that when a baserunner is tagged, he is out. But it hit me the other day that for many who find themselves in sexless marriages, it happens that when one spouse is TAG-ged, it is the other one who is out. As in, “out of luck.”

In my reading, whether it be other blogs or other forums, or even comments in response here on my blog, I see situations in which spouses are suffering in their marriage because of the attitudes, behaviors, and choices of their spouses. This goes both ways, with both husbands and wives being recipients of being TAG-ged.

TAG-ged?!? “CSL, have you been hitting the BBQ sauce again?” No. That just my acronym for a common marital affliction. In my readings, it seems that there are three common problems one spouse may bring into the marriage and it ends up wreaking havoc in the relationship. Continue reading

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“Forsaking. . . Thee”?

Just an odd thought: At what point in a marriage does it become acceptable for one spouse to rewrite the wedding vow from

I take you to be my lawful wedded wife/husband …, and forsaking all others keep myself only unto you,

into

… forsaking all others AND you, keep myself for me alone.

 

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Are You Married to a Sex Skeptic?

skiptic

Many years ago, I made the following observation: Sermonizing is the sin of the deadly earnest, no matter what theological colors you may be wearing. As I have aged, all that I’ve observed of the world around me convinces me that I was wonderfully prescient back then.

For example, if your theology is Global Warming, then you come at the debate with the fervor of an Al Gore, demanding that anyone who disagrees with you be locked up or sent to re-education camps. And if your theology is abortion, then “By Billy Bedamned Hangtree, keep your laws off my body! Sorry, Kiddo, it sucks to be you ‘cause Mama wants to shake her groove thang!” Continue reading

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“Silence Like A Cancer Grows…”

This isn’t going to be a long one, as I’m still working on Mom’s recollections, but I wanted to post about a new realization that occurred to me this past week.

As I’ve said in previous posts, I use my Twitter feed to keep up with other marriage bloggers connected with the Christian Marriage Bloggers Assn. (CMBA). Several that I follow on Twitter link to random posts from their archives, and even though these are older posts, I will scan them for the wisdom that they contain.

Recently one came through from Forgiven Wife, and while the post was excellent, as usual, one of the comments brought me up short. A man who had been refused for some time told of being vulnerable to temptation to stray and admonished wives to at least attempt to be there for their husbands. He finished with these words, which have been rolling over in my mind for several days:

Doing nothing is not an option: actions speak louder than words but IN-ACTIONS scream in the ear every minute of the day!

The accepted shibboleth is that while a wife may have contributed to her husband’s weakness, “Hon, he chose to sin, you did not make him sin.” It’s a nice comfort, but I’m contrarian enough to wonder if the guy went over the wall, didn’t she at least give him a boost?

Be that as it may, this guy’s last sentence has been in the back of my mind, and now I think I know why. Two seemingly unrelated phrases come together to help me comprehend the importance of what he was saying.

1 – He referred to the common adage that “actions speak louder than words”, and tied that to the reverse of that, inaction, and suggested that inaction also conveys a message.

2 – I’m a product of the 60’s, and one of my favorite groups was the folk duo of Simon and Garfunkel. They had many a monster hit, including Sounds of Silence, which showcased Paul Simon’s abilities to create vivid poetic images. As the song nears its conclusion, there are two lines that go:

But my words like silent raindrops fell
And echoed in the wells
Of silence

As Christians, we put store in actions; after all, it was James who said, “Show me your faith without deeds, and I’ll show you my faith by my deeds.” (2:18) And there’s that popular line that says, “If you were accused of being a Christian, would there be enough evidence to convict?” As I said, we put a great store in action. Is this husband correct to turn it on its head and, in effect, say “Your inactions demonstrate that you don’t love me.”

If actions speak louder than words, don’t inactions make any protestations of love merely echoes in the “wells of silence”? After all, “what you are doing (not doing) speaks louder than your words.”

Just a thought………
CSL

oh, here’s a link to a Disturb-ed cover of Sounds of Silence. Powerful.

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Guys, Are You Listening?

A Hubs, last year: “I’d rather just masturbate than go through the hassle of initiating.”

Same Hubs, a year later: “We’re getting a divorce.”

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May 29, 2016 · 2:59 pm

Two Surprises…

There is a story that I’ve read where a son writes a letter to his folks telling them that he is gay and that he’s coming out of the closet, that he is going to announce this to the family’s church on the coming Sunday. Then, on the second page of the letter, he tells them that he is NOT gay, but that he got an F in Algebra. He concluded with, “Seems rather insignificant now, doesn’t it?”

I will admit that my ‘surprises’ are insignificant as well, but still, well,… They are my surprises, none the less. Continue reading

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