One Year Anniversary!

Today I celebrate one year in the marriage covenant with my husband. The past year has been full of trials and joys. God has blessed us in more ways than we can imagine. A year ago we promised these words to each other:

“I take you, Hollie, to be my wife and I promise before God and all who are present here to be your loving and faithful husband, as long as our lives shall last. I will love you and give myself up for you, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her. I will serve you with tenderness and respect, and encourage you to develop the gifts that God has given you.”
“I take you, Joshua, to be my husband, and I promise before God and all who are present here to be your loving and faithful wife, as long as our lives shall last. I will love you and submit to you, as the church loves and submits to Christ. I will serve you with tenderness and respect, and encourage you to develop the gifts that God has given you.”

On our anniversary, I wanted to share one of my favorite little pieces on marriage. Enjoy 🙂

A little nook in the very heart of God

(J. R. Miller, “The Marriage Altar” 1898)

God’s plan for every marriage is happiness.

Marriage is meant to be a miniature of heaven—a
fragment of the celestial blessedness, let down into
this world.

Marriage is meant to be a little sanctuary, into which
husband and wife may flee from earth’s storms and
dangers, where in love’s shelter, their hearts fed with
affection’s daily bread—they may dwell in quiet peace.

Marriage is meant to be a shelter in which, covered
from the frosts of the world and shielded from its cold
and tempests—two lives may grow together into richest
beauty, realizing their sweetest dreams of happiness,
blending in whatever things are true, whatever things
are pure, and attaining the finest possibilities of godly
character.

Marriage is meant to be a holy ark, floating on the wild
floods of human life—like Noah’s ark on the deluge,
bearing to heaven’s gates, to the harbor of glory—the
lives which God has shut within its doors.

A godly marriage is a little nook in the very heart of
God
, where faithful souls are held close to the Father’s
heart, and carried safely, amid dangers and sorrows, to
the home above!

Taken from Grace Gems. Original post .

In Christ,

A Prayer For My Husband

Heavenly Father,
Trusting You, relying on You, resting in You is far wiser than seeking our comfort and trust in mere men. You alone, Lord, are Sovereign over all. All being big and small, all creation answers to You alone. Therefore, please, Lord increase my beloved’s trust in You. Cause him to remember daily that You alone are his strength. In times of trouble do not allow him to forget his salvation and his access to call upon the Name above all names. Lord, comtinue to guard him. Guide him into paths of righteousness and keep him from temptation. Remind him, Lord, that you are our only sure protection from evil. Father God, please keep my husband. Protect him, encourage him, grow him in likeness of your Son.
In the name of Christ I offer this prayer. Amen.

***
On my reading list for January is Prayers of An Excellent Wife and this prayer has been inspired by a prayer in said book. I have only just begun this book but cannot recommend it enough for Christian wives.

With Love,

2012

It’s that time of year when we start to think about the upcoming year. My husband and I met and talked about our goals and hopes for 2012. It was an awesome time together 🙂 We have decided to name or give 2012 a theme. That name/theme is: discipline and growth. We want to become more disciplined in our walk with the Lord and as parents to our children (our children have been victim of many fizzled out plans and new ideas in the last six months), We pray that our entire family will grow closer to God and one another. And of course, our family will literally continue to grow in this upcoming year as we will meet our child currently hanging out in my womb 🙂

Another thing we decided is that we would each (Josh and myself) read on spiritual book a month. We think this goal is realistic and low enough that we have a chance of meeting it! 😉 So, without furhter ado this is my book list for 2012:

January – Prayers of An Excellent Wife by Andrew Case

February- The Pursuit of God by A.W. Tozer

March- Bringing The Gospel Home: Witnessing To Your Family Members, Close Friends and Others You Know Well by Randy Newman

April- Loving The Church by John Crotts

May- Polishing God’s Monuments: Pillars of Hope For Punishing Times by Jim Andrews

June- God’s Canon by Steve Hays

July- Heaven on Earth by Thomas Brooks

August- Defending The Faith by Cornelius Van Til

September- Alive or Dead by JC Ryle

October- CONSIDER JESUS: Thoughts for Daily Duty, Service, and Suffering by Octavius Winslow

November- Red Like Blood by Joe Coffey + Bob Bevington

December- Broken Down House by Paul David Tripp

I already own all these books on my Kindle, so yay for not spending money! Also, if I don’t finish every book no sweat … taking care of my husband, children and home comes before reading. I’m hoping with a little free time I’ll be able to finish a good bit of them … that will probably change when the baby comes, who knows. Either way, we’re good! 🙂

A Little Nook in the Very Heart of God

A little nook in the very heart of God

(J. R. Miller, “The Marriage Altar” 1898)

God’s plan for every marriage is happiness.

Marriage is meant to be a miniature of heaven—a
fragment of the celestial blessedness, let down into
this world.

Marriage is meant to be a little sanctuary, into which
husband and wife may flee from earth’s storms and
dangers, where in love’s shelter, their hearts fed with
affection’s daily bread—they may dwell in quiet peace.

Marriage is meant to be a shelter in which, covered
from the frosts of the world and shielded from its cold
and tempests—two lives may grow together into richest
beauty, realizing their sweetest dreams of happiness,
blending in whatever things are true, whatever things
are pure, and attaining the finest possibilities of godly
character.

Marriage is meant to be a holy ark, floating on the wild
floods of human life—like Noah’s ark on the deluge,
bearing to heaven’s gates, to the harbor of glory—the
lives which God has shut within its doors.

A godly marriage is a little nook in the very heart of
God
, where faithful souls are held close to the Father’s
heart, and carried safely, amid dangers and sorrows, to
the home above!

Taken from Grace Gems. Original post .

The Excellent Wife Chpt 7: On Idols

If we are not content to wait on God for our desires, if we are miserable and sin as a result, then our heart’s desire is not set on the glory of God. Instead, our desire has become an idol.” -from The Excellent Wife: A Biblical Perspective Chpt. 7
What a profound, true, convicting statement. I’ve been reading The Excellent Wife for a few months now and I highly recommend it to all wives and fiancés. It’s full of strong, theologically sound, Bible based truth on what it means to be a Biblical wife.
In chapter seven, titled Christ: The Wife’s Heart, it talks about idols, namely idols of the heart. The author gives lists of things that may be idols and some of them may surprise the reader.
1. Good health.
2. Physical appearance.
3. Having a Christian marriage.
4. Being treated fairly.
5. Having a hurt free / pain free life.
6. Worldly pleasures.
7. A child or children.
8. Another man or woman.
9. A material thing.
10. An ideal of movement (pro-life movement, peace movement, etc.)
11. Money
12. Success
13. Others’ approval.
14. Being in control.
15. Having your “needs” met.
Of course, just because something is on this list doesn’t mean it is bad in and of itself. But, as the author discusses, our thoughts and actions in regard to the items on this list can be the problem. As wives (and Christians in general) the main desire of our heart should be to glorify God. We should be content in our circumstances … much easier said than done.
And that’s so important to realize, there’s a reason it is much easier said than done. We are sinners, it goes against our nature.

“… Seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices 10 and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator.” Col. 3:9-10 ESV
It is only by the sweet, free gift of Grace that we can accomplish this. God alone, through grace alone, by faith alone, in Christ alone allows us to do all things to the glory of Him. Yes, we still fail because we are in a process of being sanctified. It is only in heaven, free of the sinful flesh that we will do this always and fully. But, how merciful of God to allow us to experience some of that here! Can you imagine the awful fight, the gloom, the despair if we could not taste any of the fruits of delighting in the Lord while here on Earth? God does not owe us this grace, this help, or anything at all! But He is good, He is merciful, He is kind, and He is loving. Bless the Lord for allowing us this!

Bless the Lord, O my soul,
and all that is within me,
bless his holy name!
Bless the Lord, O my soul,
and forget not all his benefits,
who forgives all your iniquity,
who heals all your diseases,
who redeems your life from the pit,
who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,
who satisfies you with good
so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.
Psalm 103:1-5 Esv
Be encouraged dear friend, God has given you grace to overcome trials, to overcome sin and sorrow! Feast on His word, full of Grace and wisdom for His children. Meet with Him in prayer as often as possible. Let the Lord transform your heart through the renewing of your mind.

“Do not be conformed to this world,
but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern
what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” Romans 12:12 ESV

Lists Of Gratitude: 6/20/11

152. I’m still rejoicing and thanking God for His wonderful gift of marriage to us. It’s such an amazing creation!

Marriage was the last relic of paradise left among men, and Jesus hasted to honour
it with his first miracle.” -Spurgeon

153. The gift of photography. We have just received some of our wedding photos back, and I’m so thankful for them! How wonderful that God would give someone the idea to invent photography, to develop as much as it is today, and give certain people the gift to take excellent photos.

Our wedding cake

Our lovely daughters.

Right after feeding one another cake.

154. The grace to see Providence in so many ways. To see God continually working out our fallen lives to His glory is amazing.

155. An excellent sermon, reminding the body of the importance of prayer.

156. All the problems and joys that come with home ownership. What a tool of sanctification this will be!

157. Fellowship with our family in Christ.

Lists of gratitude: I’m married!

151. Praise be to God that I am now married to such an amazing man! Our ceremony was Saturday and it was a wonderful, joyous day. I’m so thankful that God allowed our wedding to be stress-free and very happy for us. It meant so much to hear Josh say his vows to me, and to promise mine to him. I pray we never forget them. 
Our vows:

“I take you, Hollie, to be my wife and I promise before God and all who are present here to be your loving and faithful husband, as long as our lives shall last. I will love you and give myself up for you, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her. I will serve you with tenderness and respect, and encourage you to develop the gifts that God has given you.

  “I take you, Joshua, to be my husband, and I promise before God and all who are present here to be your loving and faithful wife, as long as our lives shall last. I will love you and submit to you, as the church loves and submits to Christ. I will serve you with tenderness and respect, and encourage you to develop the gifts that God has given you.”

Next week is our honeymoon, as such Josh is working this week and I am home setting up house. I have a bunch of post floating around in my brain that I hope to get up soon! 🙂

Daisypath Wedding tickers