Posts tagged ‘women’

November 13, 2012

Extra Marital Affairs

by pastortimfowler

VANESSA & MICKEY-1068b

It has been all over the news lately about the CIA director resigning because of an extra marital affair. It was said that there were tens of thousands of emails that were sent between him and the woman. This has me worried. Does the director of the CIA not know that emails are not a secure form of communication? That aside, it breaks my heart to hear about this.
A good friend of mine and at the time a mentor, had an affair and it cost him his marriage and church. It really blew me away when I found out about it because he was my pastor. The only reason I am tell you this is because this stuff can happen to anyone if you are not careful. Sexual temptations are the toughest, especially for men, and it seems to be almost as difficult for women. I say that because everyone I know who had an affair did it with someone of the opposite sex. The marriage relationship is precious and delicate. What seems to happen is that it gets to the point of being mundane and callused and this is dangerous.
In a world where people get their feelings hurt for the stupidest of reasons, we have a tendency to take our marriages for granted. Marriage is a continual and demanding work. And, since the wedding vows say that marriage is until death, the work should never stop. Sadly we have made marriage very disposable and are not willing to work as diligently to keep our marriage together as we are to get to the point of getting married.
Most extra marital affairs begin with seemingly harmless conversation. Rarely is there a sexual encounter that starts things off. This usually happens because the conversation at home has become less than engaging. We come home after a full day at work and the conversation consists of; “How was your day?” “Fine”. How was yours?” “Fine”. Meanwhile the person at work that is potentially getting a promotion, laid off, or is working on a project with you, is talking in great detail all day. So rekindle the conversation. Flirt with your spouse. Don’t allow ‘fine’ to be the whole answer. Knowing the stress of your spouse or the joy of the spouse allows for you to keep that emotional bond in tact. It is those emotional bonds that become strained and eventually broke that leads to an affair.
Find a couple that has a strong marriage that has been married a few years longer than you. We all need a mentor and a marriage mentor can help when things are getting tough. Developing a relationship with someone who has a long and successful marriage is a great way have some support and encouragement when things are tough and everyone else is telling you to quit. We have people in our lives that help us at work, at play, and financially, so why not a marriage coach? All those others things seem to fall apart when the marriage does.
Most importantly, make your marriage line up with the biblical guidelines for marriage. Before you start thinking negatively, maybe you should read it. The old complaint of wives obeying husbands is not what you probably think it is. God instituted marriage before He even started the church. It is His precious gift to man. There are promises of health, wisdom, long life to those who have a biblical marriage.
No, this does not make for a flawless marriage, but it makes for a forgiving marriage. And it makes for a marriage that both agree to certain ground rules that are not flexible. We do very few things in life that have such lackadaisical guidelines and yet is so important to everything else we do. But a biblical marriage can be a strong and long-lasting marriage and when followed with integrity can be affair proof.
If your marriage is struggling, get help. If it is not, help others. No, the national security may not be on the line, but your sanity certainly may be. And when your marriage is strong and happy, so many other things tend to line up as well.

January 10, 2012

Beautiful Women

by pastortimfowler

Every year, several magazines name the world’s top ten most beautiful women and they always get it wrong because my wife is not on the list. Because of this, I refuse to take anything they say seriously when it comes to beauty. It is obvious that they have no clue of what true beauty is, nor do they really care. Their idea of beauty is what they can manufacture through the sales of the products advertised in their publications. Besides the make-up and surgical enhancements, a computer makes the women of these lists look like they do and it is something that God has never created and intended a woman to look like.
Now let me admit that I love it when the most beautiful woman in the world gets all dressed up and puts on some make-up and fixes her hair and then we go out in public and people stare at me wondering how did I get so lucky. But I love it just as much when I wake up next to this same woman and she has no make-up on and her hair is a bit wild-looking. She is just as beautiful then.
Our church is full of beautiful women too. It is difficult to be a pastor and admit that in a blog that many of our church members say that they read, including the most beautiful woman in the world. But the truth is what it is. I guess it sure beats looking out at a bunch of ugly women every Sunday. But what I was getting at is that these women are beautiful just as they are.
Several of them are on this health kick and have started a Zumba class. I am not sure what that is. All I know is that when they start, they shut and lock the doors and threaten people who dare to come in while the class in going on. From that, I assume it is an anger management class. Nothing like a bunch of beautiful, angry women, locking themselves behind a closed-door, huh?
They also have been gambling. That’s right, in the church. They collect money in a pot to see who will lose the most weight. Silly women, who said that you needed to lose weight anyway? I bet the husbands would rather take you out on a hot date for ice cream with that money than have you come home sweaty, tired, and mad that you didn’t win.
I guess as long as they are doing these things for health reasons and not beauty reasons I am okay with it. I do know that exercise, if it doesn’t cause injury or heart attacks, could be good for you. But, I was watching the football game last night and saw these amazing athletes involved in a game that required them to exercise regularly and several of them got hurt. Meanwhile there was about 90,000 people sitting in seats watching and half of them were fat and out of shape and yet none of them got injured. So perhaps this exercise thing is not what it’s cracked up to be.
Let me stop with the amazingly witty and ingenious humor and get serious for a minute. God made you to be beautiful in His eyes. If you don’t feel that you are beautiful, it is not His fault, it could be that you have been fooled by some people who don’t love you. God loves you. God made the first woman, Eve, before there were even any stores that sold make-up and before there was even a door to hide behind to do Zumba. When He created her, Adam looked at her and said, WO! MAN!, Thus she was called woman, because she was beautiful, without make-up, surgery, or a magazine to tell her or her husband what she should look like. Sure, if you have read the Bible, you know that Adam got to see her naked first, and I am sure that helped with his perception of beauty, but still, she didn’t have to work at it, God made her that way.
So to the beautiful women of my church, who appropriately call themselves “The Body Babes”, zoom on in your Zumba class. Eat as little as you think will help to drop a pound or two. Get healthy and feel good. But at the end of it all, as I sit back and eat my chocolate chip ice cream and cheese curls and I watch the game and those commercials come on trying to convince me that you are not perfectly beautiful, I will turn away from the TV, dip my cheese curl in my ice cream, raise it in a toast, and look at the most beautiful woman in the world.

October 10, 2011

Gratitude

by pastortimfowler

Yesterday in my series on Foundations of Our Faith, I preached about gratitude. It was one of the most rewarding Sundays that I have experienced in a while. For me to say that and you to get the understanding of it is difficult, because I am extremely blessed to pastor this church and every Sunday is rewarding. We average seeing 3-5 people each week come to know Jesus for the first time and the people who call this their home church are incredible in their pursuit of true Christianity. They love each other and they make those who come for the first time feel like they are welcome and like they can be themselves. They are unashamed to invite folks who don’t “do church” to come because they will not feel like an outsider or treated as if they are another notch in our cross or something like that.
So what was so special about this Sunday? I have to say that I am not sure that I can articulate it in a way that everyone will understand, but I will try. One thing that happens every week that freaks me out, is that people really listen to what I am saying. That shouldn’t be weird, but I have preached in churches where I thought that I was all alone and the building was full. But there was a different atmosphere this week. Every week these guys listen and I am thankful, but not only were they listening this week, but they were responding with understanding . When our praise band finished their last song, just before we did baptisms, the band was called back for an encore. Sure I may have started it, but the feeling was real. Then instead of people rushing out to get home, they all stayed as we baptized 12 people. It was funny to watch folks jockeying for position to take pictures and videos and then to see them posted on Facebook by the time I got home. We had kids as young as 8 and adults as old as 40 getting baptized for the first time and even had a whole family get baptized. It was fun. It was not a religious experience, it was a family affair. No one rushed out after the baptisms were through, most everyone stayed to clean up water, hug wet people, and laugh about the fact that we need higher ceilings so that we could flick lighters next week when they call the band back for another encore. The whole thing even spilled over to today, as I checked out Facebook and Twitter to see people posting how they were grateful for one thing or another.
It is experiences like this that make you grateful to be a Christian and for me to be a pastor. I have always taught that God does not want us to have religion, but rather He wants us to have a relationship. First, He wants a relationship with us, then He wants us to have a relationship with each others. I know that there are churches everywhere that say they have that type relationship, but I really think ours is special. Yep, I am a bit prejudice, but it is true. We don’t just hang out together on Sundays, but we hang out all throughout the week. Last week, about 30 women from our church spent the weekend at the beach together and skipped church. Something tells me they were more like what God intends the church to be during that time than most people an any given Sunday. Friday and Saturday of this week there were 9 of the guys took off for a motorcycle ride around the perimeter of South Carolina for no other reason than to hang out with each other and have some fun.
To wrap up Sunday, after our evening Bible study, about 20 of us went to eat at IHOP. Moms, dads, kids, pastors and lay people, just eating and laughing. Nothing organized, nothing fancy, but everything about it screamed, “we love each other”. The Bible says that people will know that we are disciples of Jesus by the way we love one another. I think people know this about our church, and although I have felt this for a while, this Sunday it all just seemed to come together in every way.
Nothing says you believe in what you are doing better than having a grateful heart and showing that heart to others. That is what made it all so special: gratitude.

June 6, 2011

God Does Not Need A Wife

by pastortimfowler

A 6-year-old boy asked his mom, “why God does not have a wife?”. There is a very quick answer: God is smarter that we are. (1 Corinthians 1:25 God’s nonsense is wiser than human wisdom, and God’s weakness is stronger than human strength.) But I cant’ resist having a little fun with this one.
I will start with a little more detail and seriousness to the question.
God does have a wife. Israel is described as God’s wife in the Old Testament. The church is the bride of Christ in the New Testament. Both of these are only used in the sense of helping humans understand the intimacy in which God wants in His relationship with Him and humans and not the physical sense that we think of in marriage.
God does not need help. He gave a wife to Adam as his helper, and we all know where that got him. God chooses Christians to be his help in building the church but we get caught up in stuff that is not important to that cause. But as far as having a wife like Him, God is unique and there are none like Him.
A wife for God would mean the Bible would have to be totally re-written. First, there is no way God would have finished creation in 6 days with a wife. She would not have allowed spiders and other bugs to have been created. She most certainly would not have let Adam and Eve be left naked and a commerce system would have been created before woman was ever formed in order to allow for shopping to be a form of worship.
A wife for God would have meant that the flood of Noah’s day would have never happened. There is no way she would have ever allowed Noah to built a boat, knowing that a boat would eventually lead to fishing. But if she would have allowed the boat to be built, we would not have but a few really cute animals today because most of the stuff would not have been allowed on the same boat with the kids.
A wife for God would have meant that Abraham would have never had children. There is no way that certain thing that makes babies would have happened that late in life.
A wife for God would have meant that Solomon would not have the hundreds of wives that he had. He would not have been given the wisdom to be the wisest man to ever live, that would have been given to every woman equally.
A wife for God would have messed up the plan of salvation too. If God had a wife, she would have insisted that every child be born of a virgin or that man have children and either way, that aint happening
A wife for God would have meant that heaven would be a place for mainly women because it would have ended up decorated by God’s wife and most men wouldn’t be caught dead there.
A wife for God would mean that this verse is wrong: Psalms 93:1, The Lord rules as king! He is clothed with majesty. The Lord has clothed himself; he has armed himself with power. The world was set in place; it cannot be moved. He would not be clothed in majesty because she would not like anything He picked to wear.
The biggest reason God does not have a wife is because God is truth. Even though that would stay the same, He would have to say that He was wrong and say I’m sorry, just to have any peace to give as a spiritual fruit.
God does not need a wife.