A Wife of Noble Character

Proverbs 31:10-24

10 Who can find a virtuous and capable wife?
She is more precious than rubies.
11 Her husband can trust her,
and she will greatly enrich his life.
12 She brings him good, not harm,
all the days of her life.

13 She finds wool and flax
and busily spins it.
14 She is like a merchant’s ship,
bringing her food from afar.
15 She gets up before dawn to prepare breakfast for her household
and plan the day’s work for her servant girls.

16 She goes to inspect a field and buys it;
with her earnings she plants a vineyard.
17 She is energetic and strong,
a hard worker.
18 She makes sure her dealings are profitable;
her lamp burns late into the night.

19 Her hands are busy spinning thread,
her fingers twisting fiber.
20 She extends a helping hand to the poor
and opens her arms to the needy.
21 She has no fear of winter for her household,
for everyone has warm clothes.

22 She makes her own bedspreads.
She dresses in fine linen and purple gowns.
23 Her husband is well known at the city gates,
where he sits with the other civic leaders.
24 She makes belted linen garments
and sashes to sell to the merchants.

A Wife’s Prayer

Dear God,

Please help me to win my husband’s affection every day. Show me what I can to do remind him why he fell in love with me and why he loves me more each day. Help me to be the woman of his dreams, the woman he married, the woman he wants. Grant me the confidence in myself that I know he has in me. Guide me as I strive to make him happy every day. Please grant me patience in my thoughts, words and actions when I interact with the man I love. Help me find the strength and courage You have given me when I need to be his anchor.

Thank you for his love, support and encouragement. I am blessed to have found something so genuine in what we share and believe that what we have is truly sacred.

Lord, please forgive me when I sin against Our covenant. May I speak sweetly, love earnestly, fight fairly, and forgive always.

Amen

A successful man is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks that others have thrown at him.

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act, but a habit.

An affirmation:
The healing power of God is working in me right now. Every day I get better and better in every way.

Complain and remain. Praise and be raised.

Challenges make life interesting. Overcoming them makes it meaningful.

– Joyce Meyer

“God is what we need!”

The following was copied from a Facebook posting. The speech is attributed to Darrell Scott, the father of two victims of the Columbine High School tragedy. According to snopes.com, Mr. Scott did make this statement before a House subcommittee, but additional claims in the email that circulated this speech in 1999 are false. Still, it echos what I’ve been thinking and how I’ve been feeling on the subject of God and public school lately, so I have re-posted the statement here:

Darrell Scott, the father of Rachel Scott, a victim of the Columbine High School shootings in Littleton, Colorado, was invited to address the House Judiciary Committee’s subcommittee. What he said to our national leaders during this special session of Congress was painfully truthful.

“Since the dawn of creation there has been both good & evil in the hearts of men and women. We all contain the seeds of kindness or the seeds of violence. The death of my wonderful daughter, Rachel Joy Scott, and the deaths of that heroic teacher, and the other eleven children who died must not be in vain. Their blood cries out for answers.

“The first recorded act of violence was when Cain slew his brother Abel out in the field. The villain was not the club he used.. Neither was it the NCA, the National Club Association. The true killer was Cain, and the reason for the murder could only be found in Cain’s heart.

“In the days that followed the Columbine tragedy, I was amazed at how quickly fingers began to be pointed at groups such as the NRA. I am not a member of the NRA. I am not a hunter. I do not even own a gun. I am not here to represent or defend the NRA – because I don’t believe that they are responsible for my daughter’s death. Therefore I do not believe that they need to be defended. If I believed they had anything to do with Rachel’s murder I would be their strongest opponent

I am here today to declare that Columbine was not just a tragedy — it was a spiritual event that should be forcing us to look at where the real blame lies! Much of the blame lies here in this room. Much of the blame lies behind the pointing fingers of the accusers themselves. I wrote a poem just four nights ago that expresses my feelings best.

Your laws ignore our deepest needs,
Your words are empty air.
You’ve stripped away our heritage,
You’ve outlawed simple prayer.
Now gunshots fill our classrooms,
And precious children die.
You seek for answers everywhere,
And ask the question “Why?”
You regulate restrictive laws,
Through legislative creed.
And yet you fail to understand,
That God is what we need!

“Men and women are three-part beings. We all consist of body, mind, and spirit. When we refuse to acknowledge a third part of our make-up, we create a void that allows evil, prejudice, and hatred to rush in and wreak havoc. Spiritual presences were present within our educational systems for most of our nation’s history. Many of our major colleges began as theological seminaries. This is a historical fact.

What has happened to us as a nation? We have refused to honor God, and in so doing, we open the doors to hatred and violence. And when something as terrible as Columbine’s tragedy occurs — politicians immediately look for a scapegoat such as the NRA. They immediately seek to pass more restrictive laws that contribute to erode away our personal and private liberties. We do not need more restrictive laws.

Eric and Dylan would not have been stopped by metal detectors. No amount of gun laws can stop someone who spends months planning this type of massacre. The real villain lies within our own hearts.

“As my son Craig lay under that table in the school library and saw his two friends murdered before his very eyes, he did not hesitate to pray in school. I defy any law or politician to deny him that right! I challenge every young person in America , and around the world, to realize that on April 20, 1999, at Columbine High School prayer was brought back to our schools. Do not let the many prayers offered by those students be in vain. Dare to move into the new millennium with a sacred disregard for legislation that violates your God-given right to communicate with Him.

To those of you who would point your finger at the NRA — I give to you a sincere challenge.. Dare to examine your own heart before casting the first stone!

My daughter’s death will not be in vain! The young people of this country will not allow that to happen!”

– Darrell Scott

Please share this with your friends!

I Found the Secret

Even though I was baptized and confirmed Catholic, studied religious education and/or at a parochial school from elementary through high schools, and attended Mass on a fairly consistent basis during my childhood, I’ve always struggled with religion, spirituality and my personal relationship with God.

For far too many years now, I have missed out what I am discovering to be an amazing spiritual life. I have believed in God all my life because I knew in my heart there are too many miracles in the universe for there not to be a Higher Power. Yet, I struggled with things like not always agreeing with the Catholic Church’s teachings or not knowing how to connect with/feel/speak with God in a way that felt genuine to me. This left me feeling empty inside, as though I was lacking a crucial part of my life. I didn’t correlate this void with my emotions and behavior until recently. I’ve come to realize that when I feel most sad/depressed, lonely, angry, anxious, fearful about things, I let my emotions and thoughts take over my actions. This repetitive negative behavior cycle was destroying precious parts of my life. Though I yearn to feel and act differently, it has been extremely difficult breaking the cycle. For a while, I thought I was purely struggling with the transition from young adulthood (being guided and supervised by a parent) to full-on adulthood (hello, sink or swim: marriage, parenthood, bills, career path…). Then, I realized that it wasn’t parental guidance I was craving so much as it was God’s guidance. How did I realize this? From reading a book, of course! And not just any book, but THE book… the Bible.

With all of the reading I have done in my lifetime, I have never picked up and read the Bible of my own accord. Sure, I’ve dissected passages in a Christian Studies course and heard the Gospel at Mass on Sundays, but just sitting down to read it had never appealed to me. This was mostly because I had a horrible time understanding what it says. Lucky for me, my husband found me a Bible that has footnotes throughout, translating the ancient words into modern explanations. Now, I love reading the Bible because it is filled with the instructions on how to live a happy, healthy and peaceful life. It feels like I have discovered the secret to living the life I have always dreamed of but never knew how to obtain!

One of the recommendations Joyce Meyer makes most often is to get to know the Word in order to get to know God and live a godly life. After hearing this a few dozen times, it finally started to sink in — if I didn’t read His Word, I would never be able to receive His message. For the past several weeks now, I have been finding time most every day to spend at least 10-15 minutes reading the Bible. This normally leads to a few moments of personal meditation and prayer, where I reflect on and thank God for my blessings. Before I know it, I have a lighter mind, a happier heart and a better outlook on life – a.k.a. my own personal relationship with God as I know Him. My positive thoughts and attitude leads to pleasant words and kinder, gentler, more loving behavior. The best part is the peace I am beginning to experience in my heart and in my life. It is a slow and steady process, but I am making progress and that is the important part. My days are still far from perfect, but they are getting better and I am getting stronger in faith every day.

Call It Writer’s Block

When I had the idea to start this blog, I was pretty excited to get it up and running. The act of actually doing so, I’ve come to realize, is much harder than I had originally anticipated. Nonetheless, I’ve kept trekking along, knowing in my heart of hearts I’m on the path to something, though I’m struggling to see exactly what that something is. Each day my vision becomes a little clearer. Yet, I find myself avoiding this blog and not really sure why. So I decided to evaluate what is holding me back and I’ve come to the following conclusion.

1. Part of the reason: I am scared to openly voice many of my inner thoughts and opinions. This has always been an insecurity of mine. Through years of therapy and independent personal research I have come to understand that this fear of speaking up is really a reflection of some of my deepest rooted fears: the fear of rejection and the fear of abandonment.

~> I’ve realized that the only way to overcome these fears is to trust that I am not capable of handling more than is humanly (physically) possible and that God does not expect me to try. I just need to live the life God intended for me – my life lived to the absolute fullest – and know that He’s got my back on the things that are beyond my control.

2. Most of the reason: I’m not exactly sure what to blog about on a day-to-day basis that would be useful to readers. Call it writer’s block of sorts. I’ve often felt like I have all the puzzle pieces, but tremendous difficulty starting the puzzle.

~> In order to take any sort of action, it’s most useful to have a written plan. In my excitement of the overflow of ideas I had when starting the blog, I jumped in head first, in natural Me fashion. I know what I want to convey, but I am lacking a vital tool to making it happen: a written plan. And what better place to start than from the beginning?

Therefore, the next blog will feature My Story. I will then proceed to outline the envisioned journey of the American Dream Maker. This may include suggested ways to use the American Dream Maker blog regularly, the website’s connection to Becoming Mrs. Casey, and more. Stay tuned!