Archive for December, 2013

December 17, 2013

Menopause

by pastortimfowler

As a pastor and a marriage counselor I get to hear of other peoples struggles and because of confidentiality I can’t name names, but occasionally I get to use generic references from the experience. Today I want to use an experience from a friend of mine whom I council often. Please don’t panic if you are reading this and think that I would even divulge anything ever said to me in a private session. I won’t. This is someone I know and I have his okay to do this.
My friend’s wife is going through menopause. Menopause is when women of a certain age began to go through changes in their bodies due to hormones and these changes can wreak havoc on a marriage. Most men just do not understand these things. Emotions and physical manifestations of these changes make it virtually impossible for men to understand their wives during menopause. (Like we need another challenge in doing that).
So after much prayer, I thought it would be beneficial to my friend and countless other men to blog about how God may want us (husbands) to deal with this change of life for women that challenges most marriages.
I have been blessed to be married to the same woman for 30 plus years and consider myself an expert on all things dealing with women, or should I say woman, being that woman God gave me. Because of this, I believe that God has told me to tell men to turn the tables on these women.
In my younger days, I use to listen to the band Aerosmith. Many years ago they had a song that was not one of their many hits, but I liked it because of the message. Although not biblical, it said, “Don’t get mad, get even”. I want to say that it may have some relevance in this topic, with my help.
Men should get the male version of menopause first and do it early in life, way before nature takes its course with your wives. We need to tweak it just a bit though. Menopause has to do with hormonal changes in women but for us guys it should be, “men-a-pause”.
1Corinthians chapter 13 defines love as patient, kind, and not self centered, among other things. Before we are forced to accept changes in our wives, we should practice pausing to thank God more often for our wives, no matter what the circumstances. Thankfulness has a way of overcoming hormonal changes, but men need to practice this for the entire marriage or it will be virtually impossible during female menopause. Thankfully, nothing is impossible with God.
My friend tells me that for most of there lengthy marriage that his wife was always cold natured. She would turn the heat up in winter and the AC off in the summer. Now she sweats all the time, even when he is cold. This results in him sleeping on the couch or wanting to ride in separate vehicles, or wanting to run away to live on a small deserted island far, far, away. If he had been practicing “men a pause” all of his marriage, he would have realized that these differences early in the marriage were a result of how God made her, not how he needed to change her. Thus, when God changed her during menopause, it would be easier for my friend to pause and thank God for what He is doing now. Remember, it is God who made menopause, to which men all across the world are saying with great sarcasm, “Thanks God”.
An old children’s Sunday School song says, “Count your blessings. Name them one by one. Count your blessings, see what God has done”. If men don’t pause often to thank God for their wives, they can get caught up on all the negatives of things that they can’t change instead of all the things they can change in their own hearts. I am talking about changing frustration into gratefulness and bad attitudes into attitudes of love, true love. (Patient, kind, not self centered…)
So men, don’t get mad get even. Start “men a pause” before she starts menopause. Don’t be like my friend who is now partially insane (but still madly in love). Do what it takes to pause and reflect on all of her beauty and grace and positive attributes that God gave her. That way, when God decides that it is time for her to change in a way that is very physical and totally out of her control, you will be able to continue to pause and thank God. She is a precious gift, even when she is reaching for the thermostat and kicking blanket of the bed while you lay there freezing.

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December 13, 2013

What I want for Christmas

by pastortimfowler

A new truck, a fishing boat, new golf clubs, peach milkshakes (year round) from Chic-fil-a, season tickets to Gamecock football next year, and one of those little remote control helicopters. There is my list for those who are still shopping and can’t decide what to get me.
On another note, I would like to share what I want for Christmas that does not include presents.
My parents divorced when I was 11 and from that time on, Christmas got really hard. I would put on a fake smiles and act like I wanted to be in each house, when what I really wanted was my parents to quit fighting. Later as we kids became adults, we would still try to get together at someone’s house and act like it was special to see each other on Christmas when the fact was we didn’t want to see each other the rest of the year.
This caused problems after I was married and had kids, because instead of appreciating the fact that my inlaws were doing it right, I resented the fact that my birth family rarely did. Here is the good news; I overcome that; well, almost.
As I watch how Christmas is perceived these days it makes me long for a few things and I will now share them in a list to avoid getting too “preachy”.
So here is my other list of what I want for Christmas.
I want families to get together because they realize what a precious gift they are to each other.
I want commercials and Christmas music to only be aired in December.
I want people to stop going into debt to try to show love, and just give from the heart.
I want everyone who is told “Happy Holidays” to ask for clarification of which holidays are being proclaimed happy.
I want Christmas trees and anything else designated for Christmas to not have to be renamed for political correctness.
I want everyone who is so uptight about Christmas being called Christmas to focus on saving the whales instead of ruining a centuries old tradition.
I want children’s plays in schools to sing true Christmas songs instead of ones that are made up through fear of offending someone who doesn’t even want to celebrate Christmas.
I want everyone to know the kind of love that Christmas truly represents. A love that compelled God to give His Son, Jesus CHRIST, so that I might be forgiven for all the stupid mistakes that I have made in the past, including when I tried to make Christmas all about me.
MERRY CHRISTMAS! HAPPY BIRTHDAY JESUS!!!