Men, PURSUE HER! – Video

I LOVE this man. No, I don’t know him personally, but ladiessssss, he just killed this point (in a good way): “We keep telling the Christian women to wait and not telling the Christian men to pursue! If you plan to lead in marriage, lead in the pursuit!”

Trust me sisters, this is a worthy watch! He has some GREAT advice! Hopefully, the men watch this, too.

Did you watch it? Tell me what you thought of his advice in a comment. 

What Single Sisters Should Learn From Ruth Part 2

You can read part one of this study here.

In further studying the book of Ruth, something astounding about her going after Boaz for a husband was revealed:
7.) Ruth didn’t marry Boaz just for her own happiness and well-being, but for others’ as well.

Ruth didn’t marry Boaz for a selfish reason. She didn’t marry him just because he made her happy. Ruth knew Boaz would be a major blessing for her mother-in-law, Naomi, as well, since he was one of her relatives, aka a family redeemer, someone who could buy back the land Naomi had lost.

Ruth was a treasure, a prime catch; she was beautiful both inside and out, yet she chose to marry a significantly older man rather than going after younger, “hotter” men. Had she chose to do the latter, her mother-in-law would’ve been abandoned to live in poverty with none to care for her.

Ruth wasn’t thinking about herself alone in her decision to marry Boaz, but instead, knew her marriage to him would be a ministry and blessing to someone else.

Too often we enter into engagement and marriage solely because the person makes us happy. We aren’t thinking about how our marriage can bless others and be a ministry. Happiness is certainly a by-product of a godly marriage, but it shouldn’t be the sole motivating factor as to why we do it. God is much bigger and much more generous than that. Which leads to the final lesson I want to share with you ladies:

8.) Ruth and Boaz’s marriage pointed people to God.

And all the people who were at the gate, and the elders, said, “ We are witnesses. The LORD make the woman who is coming to your house like Rachel and Leah, the two who built the house of Israel; and may you prosper in Ephrathah and be famous in Bethlehem. May your house be like the house of Perez, whom Tamar bore to Judah, because of the offspring which the LORD will give you from this young woman.” So Boaz took Ruth and she became his wife; and when he went in to her, the LORD gave her conception, and she bore a son. Then the women said to Naomi, “Blessed be the LORD, who has not left you this day without a close relative; and may his name be famous in Israel! And may he be to you a restorer of life and a nourisher of your old age; for your daughter-in-law, who loves you, who is better to you than seven sons, has borne him.”-Ruth‬ ‭4:11-15‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

Both the noble men of the city and the women saw God in Ruth and Boaz’s relationship and were very encouraged by it. They knew the union of this godly couple was special. And indeed, their marriage bore the grandfather of King David and from their lineage, Jesus the Messiah came forth.
Their union was a blessing, a ministry, and a beacon of Christ’s light to not only their community, but to the many generations that would follow.

For us Christians, it is the same. The weight of the legacy we leave behind will be according to our doing. We reap what we sow. If our marriage was ultimately about advancing the gospel and enlarging Christ’s kingdom, the legacy we leave will be great and will effect even the generations after us.

I don’t know about you, but I want my marriage to be a powerful force that echoes on long after I’m gone and resounds into eternity where I will see and meet the lives that are in heaven because of it. And I pray the same becomes true for you.
With love,
Natasha

What Single Sisters Should Learn From Ruth – Part 1

The iconic biblical relationship of Ruth and Boaz is one most single Christian women hope for. But this story—like all the other history recorded in the bible—isn’t just there to give us hope, but to teach us valuable lessons, especially on romantic relationships.

1.) Ruth chose God over a husband.

“And she said, “Look, your sister-in-law has gone back to her people and to her gods; return after your sister-in-law.” But Ruth said: “Entreat me not to leave you, Or to turn back from following after you; For wherever you go, I will go; And wherever you lodge, I will lodge; Your people shall be my people, And your God, my God.”-Ruth‬ ‭1:15-16‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

The primary and most important thing to note if you desire to marry a godly man someday is to put that desire behind you, and put Christ in front of you.

As a young and beautiful widow (her name means friend, companion, and “vision of beauty”), Ruth could’ve chose to go back to her country and her “gods” and get remarried. But she didn’t. She chose to remain with the Lord and His people, leaving behind her old life, and moving forward to a new land where God’s people lived.

If you really want a godly husband, recognize and embrace the fact that you already have one, Jesus, and that you will walk onward with Him no matter what you receive or don’t receive. If you can’t be faithful to Him, don’t expect to be faithful to a husband.

2.) Ruth desired and made sure she was discipled by a godly woman.

“But Ruth said: “Entreat me not to leave you, Or to turn back from following after you; For wherever you go, I will go; And wherever you lodge, I will lodge; Your people shall be my people, And your God, my God. Where you die, I will die, And there will I be buried. The LORD do so to me, and more also, If anything but death parts you and me.”-Ruth‬ ‭1:16-17‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

Discipleship is crucial in our walk with Christ. When we allow godly examples to pour into us, we become more godly, and then we’re more equipped to handle marriage and whatever else God entrusts us with. We have to have a heart devoted to growing closer and more like our Savior. If we don’t desire and pursue godliness, we are setting ourselves up for disaster in marriage.

3.) Ruth worked hard.

So Ruth the Moabitess said to Naomi, “Please let me go to the field, and glean heads of grain after him in whose sight I may find favor.”-‭‭Ruth‬ ‭2:2‬ ‭‬‬

Ruth wasn’t lazy. She worked all day in the fields with willing hands. She didn’t do it bitterly, she did it from love to help bring food home for her and her widowed mother-in-law. Be hard at work wherever God has placed you, whether that be in full-time ministry or at your job. You never know, your Boaz may be close by, which leads to the next lesson:

4.) Boaz made the first move.

Then Boaz said to Ruth, “You will listen, my daughter, will you not? Do not go to glean in another field, nor go from here, but stay close by my young women. Let your eyes be on the field which they reap, and go after them. Have I not commanded the young men not to touch you? And when you are thirsty, go to the vessels and drink from what the young men have drawn.”-Ruth‬ ‭2:8-9‬ ‭

Before saying a word to Ruth, Boaz asked his men about her; he wanted to know what her reputation was like. Do you have a godly reputation, or a worldly one? Godliness attracts godliness. Her reputation drew a godly man closer; it caused him to take further interest. If a godly man asks about you and hears worldliness, he will more than likely back off.

So she fell on her face, bowed down to the ground, and said to him, “Why have I found favor in your eyes, that you should take notice of me, since I am a foreigner?” And Boaz answered and said to her, “It has been fully reported to me, all that you have done for your mother-in-law since the death of your husband, and how you have left your father and your mother and the land of your birth, and have come to a people whom you did not know before. The LORD repay your work, and a full reward be given you by the LORD God of Israel, under whose wings you have come for refuge.”-Ruth‬ ‭2:10-12‬ ‭‬‬

‭‭5.) Their first one-on-one time was out in the open with others, not alone behind closed doors—and again, Boaz gave the invitation. 

Now Boaz said to her at mealtime, “Come here, and eat of the bread, and dip your piece of bread in the vinegar.” So she sat beside the reapers, and he passed parched grain to her; and she ate and was satisfied, and kept some back.-Ruth‬ ‭2:14‬ ‭

The world is all about one-on-one alone time. That’s pretty tempting, and almost always leads to sin. Boaz respected Ruth and got to know her better openly, rather than privately. He wasn’t harboring lustful motives.

Back then, God’s people didn’t date like the world dates now. Godly people had accountably, and there is no godly reason why we should discontinue following this pattern. When we do, we often fall into sexual sin. You can choose never to date like the world does, and still end up engaged and married.

6.) When you’re ready, God makes things happen swiftly.

Ruth started gleaning on Boaz’s field at the beginning of the barley harvest. Barley is the fastest crop to harvest. She worked until the end of the harvest which could’ve been as swiftly as a month. When God deems you ready to inherit His blessing in marriage, you won’t have to court for years.

The world is all about “waiting” (though they’re really not waiting for anything, except to seriously commit), whereas those in a godly relationship don’t have to wait that long if Christ has already matured them to a place of being a suitable spouse.

Satan would love two godly Christians to spend time fearing and falling into sin, rather than being confident in their courtship and not wasting a lot of time so as not to fall into sexual sin.

Single sisters, my prayer is that you won’t read the bible as if it were just another book, but really study it, understanding what it really is: the inspired word of God, preserved for those who would inherit salvation, to equip and prepare us for eternity with Christ. In it we will find all the truths and lessons we need in order to live our lives as a living, pleasing, sacrifice to God in every area, especially relationships.
There’s more lessons, but I’ll continue sharing them in another post.

Much love to you,

Natasha

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Letter To My Hero Husband

Jonathan Derek Sapienza, strong, beautiful weapon of righteousness. You remind me of Phoenix from Bryan Davis’s Reapers novels, with your devotion to godly principles, but of course, you are better because you’re also a son of God.
I want you to know I truly mean every word I’m writing. You really do weather me, you keep me balanced, you always hold me back from jumping off a cliff. You are truly my pillar, a strong foundation upon which I stand, and when I’m running in the wrong direction, you capture me and pull me back to safety.

I am speaking about one of your greatest gifts: discernment and wisdom. Proverbs says much about wisdom: it protects, it guides, it opens doors, it brings favor, and most importantly, it is the chief of all principles. After love, everything flows from wisdom. “The fear of The Lord is the beginning of wisdom.” You certainly have the fear of the Lord, and I am an eyewitness of your ever-expanding wisdom.

This wisdom has grounded me, has kept me so many times from making foolish decisions and hurting myself. After being married to you, and experiencing just how much your godly wisdom and discernment has protected me, I see now that Adam’s wisdom and discernment was given to Him by God to protect Eve. Like all women, her emotions drove her. Her emotions, though a beautiful gift, were also her greatest vulnerability, and they began dragging her toward an extremely dangerous situation. This was when her husband was supposed to be her hero and rescue her. He had the wisdom and discernment to know that what was happening between her and satan was wrong, but he did not intervene.

I am so blessed, Jonathan, so grateful to be able to say that you, my precious husband, have always intervened. There were times in my stubbornness and passion that I did not listen and submit to your loving wisdom, and I suffered the consequences. But you, my faithful companion and hero, have always been there to lift me in your arms, carry me home, and nurse my wounds. You never shame me or scorn me for my foolishness and stubbornness. You are tender and graceful toward me and I absolutely treasure you, dear prince.

Though I’ve gotten wiser from more time with our Lord and from watching your example, there are still moments that I fail to submit to your caring guidance, but since Christ continues to flourish in your godly heart, you have only become more graceful and patient with me. This beautiful reflection of our kind Savior and Lord leaves me breathless.

I recall pastor John reading Ephesians to us as we stood at the altar:

““Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish. So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church.” (‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭5:25-29‬)

O, precious beloved of mine, in our marriage, you have never—ever—asked me or enticed me to sin. You ensure what we watch is not sexually enticing or perverse or wicked; you gently help guard my heart, my mind, my eyes and my ears, as you likewise do for yourself. I watch you; your pure heart is clearly displayed in your loving actions. Christ’s purity in you is clearly manifested, shining off you, son of God.

If I could choose to go back in time and marry any of the godly men I know now, I would always choose you. You are a man after God’s own heart; a man of strong morale, granite character, and gentle strength. You are not a forceful wind, you are a gentle, guiding and refreshing breeze. You are a warrior prince with the breastplate of righteousness, a soldier who carries the sword, but is careful, patient, and wise in how and when you wield it. I am a warrior princess who practically never has her sword sheathed, and often swings too soon. You gently place your hand upon mine and lower my sword. You guide it back to the sheath and gently train my hands for God’s war of rescuing souls from our enemy’s clutches.

Too often, I allow the busyness of life to consume me, and I do not ponder and meditate on the amazingly wonderful gift I have been given. As so many words poured forth from my heart, I was taken aback by just how blessed I am.

My leader, my knight, may God so bless me and Arrow with many more years under the shelter of your loving guidance. I love you with all of my heart.

I Like A Guy Who’s In A Relationship

I charge you, O daughters of Jerusalem, By the gazelles or by the does of the field, Do not stir up nor awaken love Until it pleases. (‭Song of Solomon‬ ‭2‬:‭7‬ NKJV


Note: She’s speaking to women.

I’ve known several sisters who have done exactly what this verse warns against. There’s a brother in Christ who catches their eye, they start crushing, but the guy never really pursues them. Some of these brothers were in relationships and eventually married the girls they were with, but until that day, these sisters were convinced that the brother was truly meant for them, and the girlfriend was a counterfeit. Whether she really was or not didn’t change their reality: the brother was not pursing them, and in the end, he never did. 
It is crucial to your faith to refrain from opening up your heart to a man before the right time. If he’s in a relationship, it isn’t the right time. If he’s not pursing you, it isn’t the right time. 

Sometimes, a sister thinks the guy is into her because he shows her attention. What I’ve found is that, often, girlfriends are good at being girlfriends, but not as friends. What I mean is, she’s faithful, committed, esteeming the man, being romantic, etc. but she’s not being a friend who just hangs out and has fun with him. So the man is seeking female friendship in a girl other than his girlfriend. He’s immature, she’s immature, and they haven’t yet realized friendship is lacking in their relationship. But that’s when the single sister thinks the guy likes her, when really, he just enjoys her friendship and is using her for the sake of his fun and enjoyment. He doesn’t want to be more than friends; he already has a girlfriend fulfilling that area of his life. 

The reality check is you are an attention quencher, a fun-filler, but you’re nothing more in his eyes. If you were, he would make himself available, be open about his motives, and pursue you. 

I understand this truth can hurt. This is why I exhort my precious sisters to not share deep friendships with a man. Keep it superficial and distant. When you get married, that deep friendship will have to get snipped anyway. Why do I say this? Because with women, adultery usually begins with emotional connection. A man is listening to her feelings when her husband isn’t. A man is making time for her when her husband isn’t. This quickly spirals into a physical relationship and now you are more than mere friends. 

You don’t want to be a home-wrecker either. What if that brother comes onto you while still in a relationship? What if he then leaves her for you? Do you think God will bless that ignoble way of entering a relationship? And if you were able to steal his affection, what makes you think another woman like you can’t come around later on and do the same thing, stealing him from you? 

You don’t want a man that is so easily swayed. You want a committed one. And that’s the irony of so many women who go after the married man because they find his commitment sexy. Guess what? He’s no longer a noble and committed man once he’s sinned with you! And neither is the unmarried man in a relationship. So BACK OFF. God doesn’t write messed up The Bachelor/Bachelorette stories (hence why those relationships always quickly end in divorce!). 

If God wants you married, He’ll work it out, but you must do your part, which isn’t meddling with other people’s boyfriends or husbands. It’s being pure. That is the greatest preparation for a husband: purity. Your eyes and heart are not set on someone they shouldn’t be, they’re set on Jesus. And as you keep them on Him, Jesus will allow a godly single brother to see you. He will pray and pursue, and you can trust him to protect your purity, as you will his. And that is a relationship God will bless. Trust me, I know from experience. 

Love you sisters,

Natasha

Wife Confessions: Subtle Revenge

In marriage, you don’t always get what you want. Can you believe it? I happened to experience this two days ago.

I really wanted something, and Sir Jonathan was planning on giving it to me, but preventable things got in the way.

This upset me.

I felt like I wasn’t being prioritized. I didn’t consider it at the time, but I was being selfish.

I shared my heart with my sweet hubby, he apologized, and I felt better. Besides, eventually I’d get what I wanted.

The following day, Jonathan wanted something now. But just as my desire had to wait, I was quick to put his on hold, and although my excuse was an honest and even honorable one, the way I said it had the slightest flair of revenge, and I felt a twinge of satisfaction from it.

It didn’t take long for the Holy Spirit to convict me. Again, I was being selfish. I confessed to Jonathan the hint of revenge, to which he—as usual—gracefully and immediately forgave me.

But the Spirit was still working. I offered hubby what he wanted, but then brought up my desire as well. To my dismay, something else threatened to get in the way—again!

Then the thought hit me: this must be a test from God.

What I desired wasn’t anything evil. In fact, it was according to God’s will, something He desires. But how would I react to not getting what I wanted when I wanted it? I decided I would give Jonathan what he wanted, whether or not I got what I wanted.

And guess what happened? The thing that was threatening to put off my desire, didn’t happen. And hubby and I both got what we wanted.

Finances, children, disagreements; these aren’t what cause divorce. Sin does. It’s when we let our selfishness control us, rather than the Holy Spirit, that we destroy our marriage. Nothing else is to blame.

But when simply obey Him we call Master, denying ourselves and putting others’ needs before our own, God is pleased and we are blessed.

As always, God proved His word is true.

Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. Therefore “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; If he is thirsty, give him a drink; For in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. (‭Romans‬ ‭12‬:‭17-21‬ NKJV)

For You, O LORD, will bless the righteous; With favor You will surround him as with a shield. (‭Psalms‬ ‭5‬:‭12‬ NKJV)

Single Sister: If You Want To Get Married Someday, Read This First

Being a married woman has never been more draining.

I only have one five-week old; I can’t imagine having twins or a newborn and a toddler. But boy, is this child giving me a greater understanding of God’s will and goodness.

Babies are needy! Really needy; all the nursing (growth-spurts make baby even more insanely demanding), burping, diaper changing, face-to-face time, tummy time, and holding, not to mention bathing and nail-clipping. Then you can’t forget about your primary human relationship: your marriage; cooking, talking, dating, being intimate. And what about the house? You’ve gotta take care of that too. And I don’t know about you, but in our home, it’s way too easy for the dishes to pile up, and the dining table to get cluttered, and our bedroom to become messy. Pre-baby, it was easy to keep up. Post-baby, it takes hours to finally finish the dishes unless hubby tackles them. I have to do them in intervals because our son, Arrow, will need nursing or changing or holding.

Oh, and there’s another thing that needs tending: you! You have to bathe, brush your teeth, and do your hair some time!

And most importantly, you have to spend time with God and do whatever He’s called you to do—and maintain fellowship with the Church.

Being a wife and mother is no walk in the park. And contrary to popular belief, you come last. But that goes for any Christ follower:

And whoever of you desires to be first shall be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.” (‭Mark‬ ‭10‬:‭44-45‬ NKJV)

Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others. (‭Philippians‬ ‭2‬:‭3-4‬)

Still wanna get married and have babies, sis?

Don’t misunderstand, I’m very content with God’s call on my life. I love my husband and our son, but I was content beforehand too. And I know marriage isn’t about me; it’s about glorifying God first, helping my husband second, and lastly, enjoying the fruit of my union.

Too many single sisters buy the worldly lie that marriage is about you; making yourself happy and gratifying your desires for attention and affection. Many of these women come to hate their marriage because it wasn’t what they expected.

God isn’t shallow or selfish, so He expects His children not to be either. He will test your heart as a wife and mother. Because as a single sister, you aren’t in a 24/7 servant-relationship. You have the freedom to choose who to serve, on your own time, and usually with the help of the church. But in a marriage, you’re on your own. The church can encourage and teach you, but they cannot step in and be a wife and mother for you. No one’s allowed to sleep with your husband but you, and you are responsible for raising your kids in the way they should go. That’s at least two more souls you have to serve 24/7 whether you’d like to or not.

Being a wife and mother takes sacrifice to a new level. Your mind and heart have to toss out the Hollywood romance lies and be ready to embrace the truth of bearing the weight of marriage and motherhood.

Single sisters only see the joy. They don’t see the struggle, or feel the back pain and weariness, or the emotional toil. When you’re one with someone, you’ve got double the struggles because their battles are now yours too. You’ve got double the responsibility because their calling is now yours to support. And then you have double the physical strain because you must sustain another human’s life and teach them how to do it. And how about if your husband or child falls? There is no human on earth you’ll ever love more than your husband and your children so imagine the emotional battles you’ll have to endure if either of them struggle for a time or sin against you?

This is not meant to discourage you, but to exhort you to wake up from whatever fantasy you’ve painted marriage and motherhood to be and instead be sober-minded in how much it costs to take on those roles.

Still want to get married?