Wednesday, March 22, 2023

Ten Ways To Put More Love and More Life Into Your Love Life

My book's title, We All Married Idiots, grabs people's attention. But the meat of this book is found in the sub-title, Three Things You Will Never Change About Your Marriage and Ten Things You Can.

Using the chapter titles of the Ten Things You Can, I hope you enjoy my spin on the ten ways you can put more love and more life into your love life. Have fun!

1. Loosen Up! Ask someone what first attracted them to their spouse and the answer may be, "Their smile." So loosen up! Laugh! Smile! Nothing says "Kiss me!" more than a happy face.

2. Strip Down! Oops! Did I say that? No. God did. In Hebrews 12:1 (NLT) He says,
 ". . . let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up."
We need to strip ourselves of sin that makes us unattractive to God and to our lovers. Sins like grumbling, lust, anger . . . all sin; you name it, keeps our bedrooms from being the happy place God intended.

3. Let Go! Thoughts of  laundry to do, Billy's homework isn't done, what should I make for dinner, problems at the office, all can occupy our minds during love making.  Don't bring your "to do" list to the bedroom. I guarantee while making love, you won't be able to do any of it. So, let go of these thoughts, concentrate on your lover, and enjoy!

4. Hold On! Your honey wants to get frisky, but your honey's character flaws turn you off. No one is perfect. Don't let thoughts of your sweetheart's failures enter your mind while making love. This is the time to hold on to the good and remember all the wonderful traits you love about your spouse.

5. Settle Down! Angry? Well, settle down. Anger has no place in your marriage bed.  Sexual abstinence will not solve your marital difficulties. Settle anger outside the bedroom walls because your bedroom is reserved as your play ground not your boxing ring.

6. Make Nice! Making nice is foreplay for the night ahead. No one wants to make love with a mate who makes mean. Remember, your lover desires to be treasured, not trampled.

7. Cheer On! If you want an example of cheering on your lover during lovemaking, read Solomon's Song of Songs. Wow! For example, "How beautiful you are, my darling! Oh, how beautiful! Your eyes are doves. How handsome you are, my lover! Oh, how charming! And our bed is verdant." Song of Songs 1: 15-16. Words of affection and affirmation do much to cheer your honey on toward sexual pleasure.

8. Sit Tight! There really are times your beloved has a headache. Understanding and treating your love  tenderly during "headache" days will reap future rewards in your love life. Sit tight, be patient, and wait for a better day.

9. Give up! There will be days you won't desire your spouse, but your spouse desires you. I suggest you give up and ask God to give you passion for your husband or wife.  God says, "Husbands and wives should satisfy each other's sexual needs . . . Don't withhold yourselves from each other unless you agree to do so for a set time to devote yourselves to prayer. Then you should get back together. . . " 1 Corinthians 7: 3, 5. Prayer is an amazing power God gives to us. As we pray and invite God into our bedroom, asking The Almighty to help us respond to our lover's desires, we may be shocked at His answer. Prayer before and during lovemaking is the best foreplay of all. God wants to bless your marriage bed. He really does! Just ask Him.

10. Look up! The sparks aren't flying. There's no desire at all. Now what should you do? Look up! Ask God to help you and your beloved enjoy sexual intimacy as He planned for a husband and a wife. Loosen up, strip down, let go, hold on, settle down, make nice, cheer on, sit tight, give up, and look up. I suspect God will give you a marriage relationship better than you ever asked or imagined.

I have a passion for marriages, which is why I love promoting my book, We All Married Idiots: Three Things You Will Never Change About Your Marriage and Ten Things You Can. Available wherever books are sold and on Amazon at

Splashes of Serenity and joy prayed for you and your beloved!


Friday, March 17, 2023

Married With Nothing In Common?

You'll soon know who is the idiot in my marriage!

Sharing with you an argument Dan and I had many years ago and the wise way he brought me to my senses.

"We have nothing in common!" I cried out, exhausted, discouraged, probably a bit angry about something that didn't go my way.

My sweet man responded with a gentle answer. "Sit down and I'll show you what we have in common. He found our wedding album, opened it and said,

"We have this day in common. We made the same vows. We have those promises in common. In fact, I'm going to say them to you again right now. And he did.

Then, he picked up our family photo album.

"We have these children in common. We both love them and want what is best for them."

Calmed, I forgot about my silliness and smiled at the man who chose to share life with me. Yes indeed, we did have a lot in common.

The next time you think you and your honey are miles apart, take a tip from my hubby and journey through the photo album.

Of course, this won't work for serious issues that need to be discussed, but for the day-to-day-I'm-too-tired-to-deal-with-life spat, reminiscing works swell.

Need a splash of serenity on your marriage? Enjoy those wedding photos on a dreary day.


Wednesday, March 15, 2023

Protecting Your Marriage From Sexual Misconduct

When My husband Dan started a secular job over forty years ago, his boss took him aside and whispered the names of women in the office he could have sexually. Dan walked away and kept his eyes, his hands, and his mind on the work he was hired to do.  Never before had the in-your-face wickedness of the world so threatened our marriage. When the office Christmas party invitation arrived on Dan's desk, he was told "Spouses not invited."

"I don't go to parties without my wife." Dan explained to his co-workers and to me. 

We went to the party together. I was the only spouse at a celebration of Christmas which included dinner, dancing, drinking, and too much coziness between co-workers.

The next Christmas we attended the dinner/dance/drink and were happy to see that this time a few others ignored the "No Spouses Invited" rule and brought their mates.

When we take a stand for marriage, others join us. Won't you?

Sexual misconduct can be blatant and it can be subtle. 
A wink of an eye. 
A lingering touch. 
A flirtatious glance. 
A conversation too personal for anyone but your spouse.  

Protecting yourself and your marriage from the damage of sexual misconduct requires setting guidelines for your life and living by them. 

Rev. David Linn, District Superintendent for the Christian and Missionary Alliance, offers the following common sense advice for keeping your marriage bed and your ministry pure (bold emphasis mine):

"1. Avoid all actual sins whether outward or in thought life. This is where the real battle is fought, as Paul wrote: “No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it. Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry” (1 Cor. 10:13-14). Run from it, reveal your struggle to an accountability partner, put barriers in the way, restructure your life pattern, work in larger groups, or whatever necessary. Repent every time you fail and receive forgiveness. No excuses. Don’t ever tell yourself: This little sin really doesn’t matter.

2. Do everything you can in public. Take away the enhanced temptation of private space wherever possible. Hire a carpenter to put windows in church classrooms and office doors. Meet outside or over video chat if that helps. Make your own choices about this. Don’t merely follow what others do.

3. Observe personal space. Approach others with a measure of wise caution and watch for cues about what is comfortable for them. Everyone is different. Adjust as necessary. It doesn’t really matter what is comfortable for you.

 4. Kindly and assertively tell others what you want and do not want. 

5. If you are married, follow the cautions and reservations your spouse expresses about your relationships without hesitation or reservation. Whatever your loved one says goes, even if you do not understand it. You probably won’t. 

6. Respect the holy life patterns of others. Some do not wish to eat out together in twosomes, travel together, or minister together. You and I have no access to the inward history and life of others. It is their prerogative to make those decisions. Love your brothers and sisters by following their wishes without complaint. The expansion of the kingdom of God will not be slowed by wise and holy living.

7. Never let down your guard. Be prepared for temptations to come your way from both non-churched and churched people, both men and women. There is no genuinely safe space on earth. “Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed that he does not fall” (1 Corinthians 10:12)."

 Sexual sin seems to make headlines daily. A few weak moments can destroy your marriage, your family, your ministry, your career, your finances, your children, your children's respect, your children's marriages. etc. etc. etc. 

The cost too high, the pain too deep, the damage irreplaceable.

Dan and I set boundaries for our marriage and we live by them. 

"Marriage should be honored by all, 
and the marriage bed kept pure, 
for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral."  
Hebrews 13:4 (NIV) 

Bring splashes of serenity to your marriage by never giving a glance to or thought of another person other than your spouse. Take that stand today. Please. For the glory of God and the honor of  your marriage!


Tuesday, March 14, 2023

Staying Best Friends After You Marry


"Today I marry my best friend"

announces many wedding invitations . 

It's easy to marry your best friend, 

but how do you stay best friends after you marry?  

May these thoughts on marriage and friendship encourage you to be that best friend every husband (and every wife) desires and deserves.

1. Friends are loyal. God warned us in James 3:2 (GWT) that "All of us make a lot of mistakes." Surprise! Your honey is not perfect. He and you will make mistakes. If you are his friend, you will be quick to stand by him and forgive. Remember that he didn't wake up this morning with this thought: Woo Hoo! I wonder how many mistakes I can make today! Mistakes are not on his to-do list, but loving him in spite of them should be on yours.

2. Friends are kind. I've been to a lot of weddings and I've never heard this vow: I promise to make a note of everything you do that bothers me and remind you of it as long as we both shall live. That is not what we promise, but is that what we do? Without considering the consequences, we spew out words we wish we could stuff back in our mouths. Friends should be safe havens from the unpleasant side of life. It's a tough world out there. We need to be tender. 

3. Friends are cheerleaders. A wife fulfills a role that no one else can — that of her husband's cheerleader.  When the world knocks your man down, you need to pick him up and cheer him on. I remember my Dan coming home late from a difficult meeting. I pummeled him with questions. "What decisions were made? How did you respond?" Poor guy. He left one anxiety-ridden meeting and came home to another. Instead, I should have offered him assurance of my love in the form of a kiss, an embrace, and perhaps his favorite ice cream. I realized this truth when Dan took me in his arms, held me, and gently spoke, "I really need you to be my wife, not my boss." Lesson learned.

4. Friends spend time together. Early in our marriage Dan suggested that two times a year we go away alone together. I balked because of the expense and the time away from our children. Dan insisted and Dan was right. Now married 42 years, I realize we are best friends today because we guarded our couple time. If your husband has a hobby, join in. Dan loves to golf. I learned to love golf too. We work to find entertainment we enjoy together. Date nights are non-negotiable because friends make time to be together.

5. Friends build each other up. It's sad that some girlfriends find pleasure belittling their husbands. I've heard these friendship-ruining and marriage-killing conversations.  Don't participate in this activity. Either change the subject ("Everybody say one thing they LOVE about their husband!") or change your friends. Best friends don't ridicule each other in public or in private. They build each other up.

So, did you marry your best friend? I hope so. And I pray your friendship glows as you grow in love and life together. It takes work and discipline and self-sacrifice and it's worth it.

May your married life be filled with splashes of serenity!

Wednesday, February 22, 2023

Cancer Update

Woo hoo! Have I got an update for you! Thank you to all who have prayed me through the last eight years of cancer treatments and my bout with severe covid. God's Army is the best Army and you all deserve a medal for supporting me in prayer and in many other ways. There was not a day I felt unloved by God or all of you. Thank you.

Let me remind you, in January 2016 I was diagnosed with "high risk" chronic lymphocytic leukemia. "High risk" because three of my chromosomes are not normal. (Glad they didn't check my brain!) The prognosis was 

"Rapid progression   
inferior survival, 
shorter survival time 
and resistance to treatment." 

Bottom line:
There was no treatment for me,
 I was not expected to live,
 death would happen soon, 
and I would go fast. 

"We'll keep you comfortable" 
was all the hope I received from the doctor that day.

But God!!! 

I became ill the following December. Expecting to cash in on the "keep you comfortable" promise, I returned to the oncologist.

 Great news!!! 
FDA had just approved a treatment for "high risk" cll. 

Three pills a day, which has now been reduced to one pill a day, my leukemia stopped progressing.

 Within two months,
 my blood counts were normal! 

"This is phenomenal!!!" 
my oncologist cheered. 
I assured him not only do we have a God of the phenomenal, 
but a God of the impossible!

The medication (imbruvica) was new and doctors hoped it would buy me time. Three years, then five years, now seven years. Today I learned that imbruvica has been so successful, "high risk" cll is no longer labeled "high risk." 

Imbruvica works! 
This wonder drug has stood the test of time. 

Other than my bout with covid, I have remained healthy, strong, and active. leukemia lurks inside me, but imbruvica acts like a fortress keeping it from going any further. 

I thank God today, but I also thank cancer researchers and doctors. These men and women sacrifice much to spend long hours glaring at test tubes and people's blood. Thank you, dear ones, called by God to heal this vicious disease. Three cheers and many prayers go up for you!!! Thank you!!!

"For nothing will be impossible with God."
Luke 1:37

God shows Himself in many ways when cancer hits home. I write about my cancer journey in Praise the Lord and Pass the Chemo: A Hopeful Response to a Hard Reality. You can purchase a copy on Amazon or directly from me. 

Please pray for cancer research. I am so thankful.


Tuesday, January 17, 2023

Life After 40 Podcast with Mary Hess and Elaine W. Miller

Life after 40.
You've made it to the second half!
 Hold on! 
Don't quit now! 
God has much more and even better waiting for you in the back 40. 

Hear my heart as I share with Mary Hess' on The Back 40 Podcast

God's call to write after age 50, 

Tips on preparing your marriage for the empty nest. 

Prioritizing your marriage.

Your last child leaves home. Now what? 

The great gift Dan gave me for my 50th birthday. 

God's purpose in old age.  

God's plan in an intensive care unit.

What a fun podcast! Thanks Mary Hess for loving and encouraging people to thrive in the back 40 of life. 

Saturday, December 31, 2022

Glorify — My Word for 2023

Doctors had me dead 
— twice — 
yet, here I am!

God says in Psalm 139:16 (NIV)
". . . all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be." 

Whether days are good or difficult,
 God knows. 
He ordained them. 
God has each day of my life set apart for a purpose.  
Each moment is orchestrated by God 
for my good, 
to teach me lessons, 
to use my trial to encourage others, 
and any other way God wants to use me
 to glorify Himself.  

 Doctors had me dead, 
but God granted me life. 
 God had more days planned for me. 
As 2023 dawns, I am thankful for His healing and my life as I ask Him 

How then shall I live? 
What do You want me to do in 2023?  

His response:

Glorify God —
with your physical body. 

My life and my health are a gift from God.
 My body is a temple of The Holy Spirit. 
I need to glorify God by caring for this temple by 
eating healthy foods,
 exercising daily, 
sleeping well. 

   For the glory of God, I will strive to take better care of my body in 2023. 
Not so I look good or fit in clothes I wore long ago, or just plain vain conceit.
I want energy. 
Energy to do what I wrote on the back cover of Praise the Lord and Pass the Chemo:
to love deeper,
 live fuller, 
laugh louder, 
sing sweeter, and
 shine brighter. 
God granted me more years and 
I desire to live life to the full or as He said,

Glorify God —
with your spirit.

My greatest desire is to glorify God with 
the words I speak, 
the actions I take, 
the thoughts I think, 
the time I spend.

 Living in worldly pursuits,
 disobeying and displeasing God is 
time God never ordained for me, or 
time I will never get back. 

 In my quest to glorify God and rid myself of all that displeases God, 
may I find no pleasure in sin. 

I will start this 2023 journey towards holiness by seeking God's guidance and power to 
Rejoice always!

 In the movie Pollyanna, the orphan Pollyanna played the Glad Game. 
Whatever happened in her day, Pollyanna turned it around to find some reason to be glad. 
God commands me to rejoice always whether days are good or difficult  
 for this is the will of God concerning me. 

The definition of Pollyanna is "an excessively cheerful or optimistic person."
 The definition of rejoicing is "feel or show great joy or delight."
 I will glorify the Lord with rejoicing always! 
I'll play the glad game and be a Pollyanna!
 Judge never! 

Judgment is not my job and not my call.
 It's not! 
I'm called to love, not judge.
 I'll leave the judging to the only righteous One who judges justly. 

Stop worrying! 

What a waste of time is worry! 
How many hours and days have I worried about situations that never happened? 
God is in control of whatever occupies my mind with worry. 
He doesn't need me fretting about anything.

Be content! 

The life, the family, the job, the home, the finances God provides me is all I need. 
 Being discontent robs me of time wishing for something God didn't plan for me. 

Stop doubting! 

His Presence, 
His Power,
 His Provision.
 His Promise.
 He is with me always. 
God doesn't lie. 
When I was at my lowest in covid ICU,
 God's presence was so powerful and profound.
He held me. 
He comforted me.
 He covered me with His peace and His presence.
 Why would I ever doubt He is with me always, for He surely is.

 Nothing is impossible with God.
 I can't solve the world's or my loved one's problems, 
but God can and He will. 
Nothing is impossible with God. 
He doesn't need me to interfere with His plan and His sovereignty. 

Practice patience! 

Why would I ever think my timeline is better than God's? 
He has every day (and moment) planned before my birth. 
What peace there is in patience. 
Please give me patience, Lord.

Be filled with God's Holy Spirit!

None of the above is possible
 without a daily cleansing of sin and 
filling with the Holy Spirit which is 


  Look at those wonderful attributes God promises us as the Holy Spirit lives in us.

 I'm ready for a powerful journey through 2023 
living in His fullness and 
glorifying God! 
Won't you join me?

My word for 2023 — Glorify!  

Glorify God by all I 
say, do, think, act, and consume as I
 become more Holy and more healthy. 

Happy 2023! 
May you spend it glorifying God in all you do. 

Splashes of Serenity for the glory of God!