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The Simple Marriage Prayer That Will Put Your Focus On God

"When we pray these words, we are acknowledging that He is in control of us, and we are not in control of each other. It is offering our own will in exchange for God’s will."

Dear ‘Good Parents’: This Is How You Miss the Signs of Sexual Abuse in Your Child

How do good parents miss child sexual abuse? It is simple.

Twins Found Floating Face Down in Backyard Pool. 6-Yr-Old Who Can’t Swim Dives in After Them in Bold Rescue.

“They were completely gone, there was no life left in them. They were blue. They were limp. There was no heartbeat. There was nothing."

“God Whispers to Us in Our Pleasures, Speaks in Our Conscience, But Shouts in Our Pain”

Two months ago we discovered we had to move, again. Three homes in three years since we moved back from England. Have you ever wanted to hit the pause button of life?

But our family has grown accustomed to such change. We took some time, moved our belongings, and started somewhere new.

But life doesn’t pause. It keeps churning.

The last couple of weeks have churned with heartbreaking news: of losing someone dear, and phone calls from near misses — friends with new leases on life. Indeed, it’s been that kind of a year for my wife’s family, as loss has followed loss.

I can’t process death. And I can’t explain how hurt finds us when we least expect it. The words of C.S. Lewis come to mind:

“Pain insists upon being attended to. God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pain: it is His megaphone to rouse a deaf world.”

I hear the megaphone. And I see it ringing in the lives of friends and family.

And as the shouts of God echo, I find myself looking around to the things he’s given to me, and holding them with thankful tears, and trembling hands.

And something rises up inside of me, and it feels like what life itself must feel like. A burning in my heart that pushes me towards the things I love, the people I love.

The burning feels like the fight that strikes our hearts when we gulp the air and scream life in those first moments outside of the womb.

With [clenched] fists and a wail we start this life; fighting for breath, fighting for the comfort of our mother’s breast. We grow up clinging to love. And we hold tight as it moves us, grows us, nurtures us.

This is the magic and wonder of love: it pulls us onward in this life, even as it grows within us.

What will you do for love? What would you do without it?

Will you fight for it? Will you fight to get it back?

The fight: it’s an instinct placed in us by God. We will climb mountains, swim oceans, and cross rivers to get at the love that pulls us along.

We fight to live.

We fight to love, and to keep loving.

We fight to remain together.

And we fight sadness and loneliness when we’re apart.

We learn through sport that winning propels us to work hard and push ourselves. But it’s the love of the teammate that doesn’t let us quit. And even if we lose, the same love pulls us closer together to our team.

It’s the beauty of the fight.

Because it’s not winning or losing that matters to us, really. It’s the fight along the way. It’s the struggle with our brothers and sisters. It’s holding each other in victory, and defeat.

It’s the fire in the young father, who buys his first house just as the market crashes and then loses his job and his health insurance, even as his first child arrives a month early.

His burning heart. His fearful heart. His desperate heart.

It’s in this desolate place the young father’s heart rises up — fist clenching and wailing on into another day. And he fights for his house, and his work. He fights for his wife and new daughter.

Timothy Willard
Timothy Willard
Tim's authored four books, including Shine So Bright, a children's Christmas story, and is finishing his first novel. He and his wife, Christine, co-founded The Edges and are writing a book they hope will inspire married couples to stick together no matter what. He and Christine live in Charlotte, North Carolina with their three pixie-daughters. Sign-up here to follow their work.

The Simple Marriage Prayer That Will Put Your Focus On God

"When we pray these words, we are acknowledging that He is in control of us, and we are not in control of each other. It is offering our own will in exchange for God’s will."

Dear ‘Good Parents’: This Is How You Miss the Signs of Sexual Abuse in Your Child

How do good parents miss child sexual abuse? It is simple.

Twins Found Floating Face Down in Backyard Pool. 6-Yr-Old Who Can’t Swim Dives in After Them in Bold Rescue.

“They were completely gone, there was no life left in them. They were blue. They were limp. There was no heartbeat. There was nothing."