Posts Tagged ‘love’

May We Please Speak with the Lady of the House: How is Camille Cosby?

July 20, 2015
What lies behind the smile? Let's hope it is not fear. (Photo Credit: pubsub.com)

What lies behind the smile? Let’s hope it is not fear. (Photo Credit: pubsub.com)

You can’t help but feel sorry for Camille Cosby. She is the beautiful, and apparently long-suffering wife of comedic legend Bill Cosby. For awhile it seemed as if she had it all. She wasn’t one of those people who jump on the bandwagon of an already shining star.  She married Cosby long before his career reached the stellar heights of “The Cosby Show”. She was there from the beginning. They had five wonderful children together and seemed, to the casual observer, to be a loving and close-knit family. It’s wonderful to be lavished with gifts such as new bracelets, necklaces or rings; But Cosby flew to the top of gift-giving husbands when he brought his wife an honest-to-goodness jet. Many of my girlfriends and I wanted to be her. But oh we had no idea what we were wishing for.

Cosby has been embroiled for the last few years in tales of his questionable sexual conduct. The problem is that these encounters were not with his wife, but allegedly, with a host of other women. Everyone loves the song “Stand by your Man”, and no one has the right to tell someone how to handle their marriage, but Camille seems to be handling this situation, and Cosby, with exceptionally gentle kid gloves. We don’t know how she has been responding to the situation behind closed doors, but her interviews bespeak a woman who is cool, calm and accepting.

Whatever is going on at home, not everyone is built to handle disappointment well. People and organizations left and right are fighting to have Cosby’s accolades rescinded. There have been talks of removing his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and Disney is even considering removing a bronze bust of him from their theme park. A man can become moody is he loses a regular 9-to-5 job, so it has to be  much worse to see your public image bursting like the bubbles in the plastic that you wrap valuables in. And who is usually home to bear the brunt of a disgraced husband’s frustrations? Yes, the wife. Let’s pray Camille will be okay.

 

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My Stomach Sank Just A Little

June 29, 2015

Pamela Kay Noble Brown

Update:  On Friday, June 26, 2015, the Supreme Court ruled that same-sex unions are now to be recognized as legal marriages in all 50 states. This original blog below expressed my thoughts three years ago when it was up to individual states to decide the legality of it all. It even more so reflects my feelings now that it has become the law of the land, and I feel compelled to post it again. Thank you.

“My stomach sank just a little”. These were the words spoken by a pastor Wednesday evening after President Barack Obama infamously became the first sitting American President to support same-sex marriage. I have to admit that these words also come very close to describing the tightening feeling knotted in my own gut the moment I heard the President’s interview. I’ll tell you why.

Every since I first heard of Barack Obama, I…

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Don’t get married until you read this; it could change your life

June 9, 2015
This is the easy part. Your life growing together in Christ is where the work really begins. (Photo Credit:  en.wikipedia.org)

This is the easy part. Your life growing together in Christ is where the work really begins. (Photo Credit: en.wikipedia.org)

Hi friends. Catch your breath and pull up a chair. Believe me when I tell you I just read one of the best articles on marriage I have ever read. I told my friend that first shared it on Facebook, that I feel it should be required reading for everyone before they walk down the aisle. A lot of it should be common sense, but I guess it’s just so easy to get caught up in the blissful feelings of love and forget about mundane things like common sense. So I am sharing the entire article with the disclaimer that full credit for the authorship and ownership (and all rights included therein)  of this article that appeared on boundless.org belongs to author Felicia Alvarez. And now without further ado, I bring to you this game changer in the litanies on marriage.

Your Future Marriage is Bigger Than You

When you first meet Ryan and Cyndi Livingston, you are immediately drawn in by their smiles and genuineness. They truly care about everyone. At church picnics, while everyone else is comfortably sitting with their group of friends, they spot the not-so-popular or new people who are by themselves and go chat with them. They are a young couple with three beautiful little girls, but you can tell that while they love each other and their children deeply, their main passion is Jesus. Their passion for Christ overflows into a sincere love for others.

I had the privilege of interacting with them multiple times each week at church functions, and every time I was blown away by how they served the Lord together. One evening in particular, as I watched this couple pray together with an elderly lady from our church, it dawned on me: This is how marriage should be.

Marriage should be about serving the Lord — about reaching people with the Gospel and impacting the world for Christ.

Yet we forget that simple truth so easily. We think life and relationships are about us and our happiness. But in reality, our future marriage is part of a bigger picture. Not only does it affect us as individuals, it affects our children, our family, our church, our community, our world, and it even affects eternity.

Start With the Right Outlook

I had always known that marriage was about Christ and His kingdom, but I had lost sight of it in my search for a spouse. I had forgotten that I wasn’t just looking for a roommate, a financial partner, a lover, or a father for my future children; I was looking for someone with whom I could build a godly legacy.

It saddened me that I had failed to apply this concept. In the past, I would date someone who was cute, had a good job, and went to church on Sunday — but his influence didn’t make me more like Jesus. Even though I knew he was pulling me away from Christ, I was so desperate for a boyfriend I would stay in the relationship.

Sound familiar?

Unfortunately, I’ve met many Christian girls who have also done this. Let’s face it: The pickings are slim, so we are happy to accept anyone who goes to church (even if it’s just once a month) and treats us semi-decently. It’s so easy to excuse the truth — that he isn’t the person God intended for you — because we want companionship, we want marriage. But a poor marriage could actually hinder you from doing all God has for you to do.

The Bible doesn’t say, “It is God’s will that you should be married.” Instead, 1 Thessalonians 4:3 says, “It is God’s will that you should be sanctified.” Therefore, God’s will for all His children, whether married or unmarried, is sanctification.

Your future spouse will be the primary influence of your spiritual life, so choose carefully. We must remember that marriage will not only affect our children and community spiritually, but it will also significantly impact our own spiritual growth for better or for worse.

How to Find a Legacy Man, and Does He Even Exist?

At this point, you’re probably thinking that the odds of finding a godly legacy man are as likely as finding a leprechaun. Let me assure you: Godly men do exist. However, sometimes we don’t see them because we’re not focused on the right things.

Timothy Keller in his book The Meaning of Marriage shares some wisdom from his wife, Kathy:

Most people, when they are looking for a spouse, are looking for a finished statue when they should be looking for a wonderful block of marble. Not so that you can create the kind of person you want, but rather because you see what kind of person Jesus is making…. When looking for a marriage partner, each must be able to look inside the other and see what God is doing and be excited about being part of the process of liberating the emerging ‘new you.’

Bottom line: Don’t look for perfection, but do look for evidence of godly growth.

I’ve listed below some questions that, when answered humbly and honestly, may help guide you as you seek who the Lord has for you.

1. Does he love Christ the most?

If he loves Christ the most, you can be sure that love will extend into how he treats you and others around him. You will see godly fruit of “love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control” in his everyday life (Galatians 5:22-23).

Fruit is the evidence of God working in a person’s life. If a man is growing in Christ, you can rest assured that he will lead with love, and you can confidently trust him with your life and future.

2. Does he encourage you to become more like Jesus?

In Sacred Marriage, author Gary Thomas writes, “We must not enter marriage predominately to be fulfilled, emotionally satisfied, or romantically charged, but rather to become more like Jesus Christ.”

Our goal should be to be with someone who spurs us on in our Christian walk and whom we can likewise encourage. This encouragement comes from his living out his faith by talking to you about what the Lord is doing in his life and praying and studying God’s Word with you.

3. Does he love you as Christ loved the church?

Ephesians 5:25 says, “Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.” If he loves you as Christ loves the church, he will love you sacrificially and strive to put you first in his life before hobbies, friends and work.

4. Can you serve the Lord with him?

Our purpose in marriage is to multiply the kingdom of God, and that doesn’t just mean by having lots of kids. It also means by reaching the world for Christ. If you and your boyfriend are currently serving the Lord together, that is exactly how it should be.

My Story

I did not ignore these questions when I first met my husband, Tim. I took a different approach than I had in previous relationships by centering the relationship on the Lord rather than my own needs or wants. I asked myself, “Does this relationship have the potential for godly growth?” and “Based off what I know about this man, could I see myself serving the Lord with him for years to come?” The answer was “yes,” so we continued to seek the Lord together as a couple.

In previous relationships, guys had told me all the right things, but they never lived out their words. I then realized that it’s not so much about hearing the right answers as it is seeing the right answers.

The reason I trusted Tim to be my husband was because I had not just heard, but experienced each one of the answers. I had witnessed his leadership and servant heart on a daily basis. Tim led me to the Lord and made me a better, godlier person. Because I had seen the fruit of godly leadership, I had a peace that I had never before experienced in a relationship. The Lord affirmed in my heart that Tim was the one with whom I would build, by the grace of God, a Christ-centered legacy.

Summing It Up

A godly legacy is not built on shared hobbies, but on a shared pursuit of Christ. Marriage is bigger than us — it’s about more than satisfying our wants and needs.

From experience, I know it’s easy to get caught up in a consumer or holier-than-thou mentality when looking for a legacy, so be careful. Remember, you are not just looking out for your best interest, but also for his. You should want him to find someone with whom he can also serve the Lord. In fact, if it’s a wrong relationship, acting in his best interest might mean breaking up with him in a loving and gracious way.

You will never find perfection, but with the Lord’s guidance, you can find someone with whom to build a godly legacy. So date with that heavenly mind, and know that your marriage today will influence the generations of tomorrow.

Is a snowman better than no man?

May 26, 2015
Set the standards for the love you want, and then relax and revel in it.  (Photo credit: kolibanat.deviantart.com-)

Set the standards for the love you want, and then relax and revel in it. (Photo credit: kolibanat.deviantart.com-)

There was a very interesting conversation this morning on the Tom Joyner Morning Show. They were discussing relationships. The guest was an author who’d written a book about the interaction between men and women. She said that she’d like to start a movement wherein women would not take any crap. My grandmother and mother often used the phrase that some women seemed to think “a snowman is better than no man”. That means that a man whose professed love, loyalty, commitment and honesty were as fleeting as the ice in a snowman melting on a hot day, had just as much of a chance of finding a good woman as a true blue man did. And this is because some women would rather take any kind of treatment than to be single.

She wants women to set higher standards for the kind of treatment we receive from men, right down to the smallest details. I’d never really thought about texting in a negative way because it is so much a part of our society. But this author said that texting to ask for a first date is an absolute no-no. She said that a woman who allows this is setting the stage for herself to be associated with just another of a man’s gadgets or playthings. She said it is up to the woman to require that she be treated well, properly courted and formally asked for a date via an actual telephone call.

Another thing she strongly discourages is women setting up residence in the world of wonder. In this scenario, the man, whether consciously or subconsciously, keeps the woman in a slightly off balanced state of mind with his inconsistent behavior. She said if a man is more than 10 or 15 minutes late (especially for the first 2-3 dates) and has not called to apologize and let you know that he is on the way, you should let it go. Better yet, if he stands you up without calling at any stage in the game, let it go.

I agree, because we are not detectives, well not many of us, and we should not have to be “wondering” all the time. Wondering if he is coming, wondering if he’s in a car accident unconscious and can’t call us, wondering is his phone acting up again, wondering why we didn’t immediately ask for a family member’s number so we will always have a way to reach him.

Yes, although wonder can be an awe-filled state of joy; too much wonder in a relationship can lead to a constant state of question-filled doubt. So when it comes to love maybe we can all just agree to leave Wonder to the business of making bread, and leave the romance to Cupid.

 

 

Keeping Easter Real

April 4, 2015
Hallelujah, Christ is risen!  (photo credit:  selaluonline.com)

Hallelujah, Christ is risen! (photo credit: selaluonline.com)

Easter brings different feelings for different people.  For some it means a time of great festivities as the whole family gathers around to break bread together. For others, isolated or even newly grieving, it may be a time of bittersweet memories of holidays past spent with loved ones no longer here with us on earth. The key to getting through the holiday sane and whole is to remember that there are no one-size-fits all ways to celebrate Easter.

Easter is a day when Christians recognize the resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, three days after He was crucified on a cross to pay for the sins committed by mankind. Here’s a nice detailed guide about Easter and its history. It is actually a very spiritual holiday. But sometimes it is easy to get carried away by the trappings of what we think Easter is supposed to look like. Not every Easter dinner has to be reminiscent of a Normal Rockwell painting to be considered successful.

Do what makes you happy and makes you feel grounded. If you’re tired of going to gatherings where well-meaning aunties gently ask are you still single, don’t go.  If you are tired of being asked why your spouse once again couldn’t make the family soiree, tell them to call and ask him/her. If you’re hosting and can’t afford the high-priced honey hams, put on a huge pot of spaghetti and call it a day. Beautiful memories are created by the quality of the time spent laughing and conversing with family and friends, not by the expense of the food.  Above all celebrate Christ and each other, and let go of the negativity. You will fill much better having alleviated the pressure of living up to superfluous expectations.

Happy Easter and God Bless.  🙂

 

 

Three ways to beat the ding dong guilt.

January 6, 2015
Now you won't have to slink back to your car at the sound of these.  (Photo Credit:  en.wikipedia.org)

Now you won’t have to slink back to your car at the sound of these. (Photo Credit: en.wikipedia.org)

Now that the holidays are over and we’ve enjoyed the warm fuzzy feelings, let’s explore another feeling that we often sweep under the rug. For want of a better term, I call it ding dong guilt. Why you ask?  Well because it refers to the feeling you sometimes get in the pit of your stomach when you’re all caught up in the merriment on the city sidewalks, and run smack dab into a cheery, or in some cases not so cheery, person ringing their chimes.  I won’t name any organizations, but suffice it to say that the representatives normally have on an apron and loudly clang clarions over a black kettle.  And they are usually blanketed over the entryways of EVERY store in town before and during the holiday season.

Don’t get me wrong. The first couple of days that we hear the winsome peals, our faces light up with joyous smiles because it’s like a symbol that Christmas is coming. It brings sentimental remembrances of earlier times when to grandmother’s house we went, as well as joyous anticipation of creating new memories as we celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. But there is something a little embarrassing about rolling your buggy full of food out of the grocery store to feed your family, and having no change left to put in the pot to feed the hungry. And you can’t help but feel a tad remorseful when a clerk has to help you lug all of the toys you’ve brought for your little ones out to the car, and there’s nothing left to donate to kiddies who won’t wake up to any toys, save what is given through the kindness of others.

Well, that was 2014.  Starting this year and every year forward we can put those doldrums behind us. Here are the top three ways to beat ding dong guilt:

3.  Plan Ahead

It is the beginning of the year, so we have 10 full months before the November takeover.  So make it a family project and set aside a love jar. Whenever you come in from work, or the kids come in from school, put all of the change in this jar. By the end of the year, you should have multiple jars, or one huge jar.  Why not make it fun and instead of a piggy bank, buy or make a huge bell-shaped jar.  Some time in October you can have a fun night with some popcorn and hot chocolate, and spend a few hours as a family counting out and rolling the coins in wrappers. Then take the coins to your bank, exchange them for bills and happily be prepared to drop a gift at every store.

2.  Explore the Meaning

This is a great catalyst for family discussion and growth. You won’t be so tempted to grimace when you delve into the reasons behind these calls for aid. Honestly, in this day and age, when the majority of states still have their minimum wages at $7.25 per hour, a simple turn of misfortune could have any of us in dire straits indeed. So even though we may not be able to be our brother’s keeper 24 hours a day, we may learn to welcome the opportunity to do what we can when we can.

1.  Imagine

There’s a song by the late great John Lennon that expresses it beautifully.  The lyrics read:

Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people
Sharing all the world…

You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And the world will live as one.

Even though you will not be at the home of each and every recipient of your contribution on Christmas morning, allow yourself to imagine.  Picture the astonished screams of the child who never ever really thought they’d get a bicycle. Feel the joy of the mom who envelops her child in a warm coat, and knows that now that child won’t have to stand shivering from the cold at the school bus stop every morning. See in your mind the awed face of a little girl sitting cross-legged on the floor cradling her very first new Barbie doll after a short lifetime of hand-me down toys. Silent tears of happiness stream down her face because she never knew that Barbies came with two arms and legs.  Imagine…

Mommy and Me: Tears of Joy

April 19, 2014
My mommy, LouEllen Stephenson Noble, had my back from birth to graduation and way beyond.

My mommy, LouEllen Stephenson Noble, had my back from birth to graduation and way beyond.

Me and mommy at Masters graduation

My mommy and me. I miss you dreadfully and painfully, but that is overshadowed by the joy and thankfulness I have to God for choosing you, with your abundance of love, to be my mother. What a blessing.  You made me laugh so much. lol

2008, Daddy had just passed March 21st. I never would have imagined that the other shoe would drop so quickly and so hard. My beloved Mother passed away on April 19th. I post these pictures today in memory of LouEllen Stephenson Noble, so kind, gentle, loving and true. From before I could walk until I walked across the stage on graduation day, you were there cheering me on. As the eldest daughter, I tried so hard to be strong for my sister and brother, when like them, I was dying inside. But I will forever be grateful Mommy and Daddy for the most valuable gift you ever gave us. My earliest memories are you telling me bible stories before I could even read. How did we make it through losing you? Why are we still here after losing a part of our hearts? I’ll share with you the words of a song that embodies what Mommy taught me on how to make it…”If you ever needed a friend who sticks closer than any brother, I recommend Jesus, Jesus, because He’s that kind of friend.” Remember that facebook family, whatever you may face in this life. Thank you Mommy. I love and miss you so much!

 

Love mystery romance suspense? My thriller is on sale for three days only.

April 2, 2014
Bored + Housewife = Trouble!

Bored + Housewife = Trouble!

 

3-Day Sale: Kelly learns the hard way all that glitters isn’t gold in “Handcuffs and a Pyramid of Satin”  Be sure to use coupon code EH35C when checking out to get 50% off now!  Please share.

Excerpt from “Handcuffs and a Pyramid of Satin”:

Flight from Reality

Room 222 was a hilarious high school sitcom back in the early 1970’s. But there was nothing at all funny about the series of twos in Kelly Cavenaugh’s life.  Kelly thought about her current situation and breathed a pathetic sigh as she sat waiting in the airport for her connecting flight. She had been married for exactly two years, two months, and two days and already she knew she’d married the wrong man.

Kelly slid over on the blue attached seats in the airport waiting area to make room for a frazzled mother to fit in with her three active kids. Kelly couldn’t help but smile as the head of the smallest child bumped her elbow. The little girl glanced at her mother’s stern face and immediately burst into tears.

“I’m so sorry,” said the mother.  “Please excuse her.  I’m trying to keep them still.”

“No problem,” said Kelly, rummaging through her purse for a tissue to catch the drops of coffee dribbling down her cup.  Thank goodness the lid hadn’t come off, she thought.  Hot coffee would have splashed all over this child’s face.  Once the mother had the kids momentarily settled and sharing a pack of fruit Mentos, Kelly returned to her thoughts.

Jeff had seemed so perfect on paper…

 

 

 

Daddy and Me: Sweet Memories

March 21, 2014
Daddy and Me

Daddy and Me

This is one of my favorite pictures of my Daddy and me.  From the moment I can remember anything at all, this picture epitomizes the feeling I got from Daddy:  Safe and Loved.

My Daddy graduated from this life March 21, 2008.  He gained eternal life, but I lost my Daddy.  Amidst the sadness of today, I keep chuckling at some of the memories of my beloved Daddy, James Joshua Noble, Sr.  I’m sharing a few with you my friends.  Daddy was so funny.

I remember being a child, ready to eat, but having to wait until each person around the dinner table said a bible verse AND where it was found.  That where part was what prolonged things as my siblings and I scrambled to remember. Lol.   But as an adult, I’ve had some of those verses quickly come back to me in a time of trouble and need.

I remember wanting to crawl under the table with shame when my friends would come over.  And as we would be heading out the door or back to my room to talk girl talk, music, and pop stars, Daddy would greet the person with “Hi, nice to meet you.  I hope you have accepted Christ as your personal Savior.  If not, anytime you need to talk, I’ll be glad to tell you all about God’s wonderful gift.”  And while the teenaged me was horrified, I have been awed when some of those friends have told me later that what Daddy said had at least started them thinking.  And, unbeknownst to me at the time, some had even gone back and had discussions with Daddy on the bible, salvation, etc.

I remember sitting in the living room with boys who had come to court (or whatever they call it these days) and talking the night away.  You know how time flies when you’re having fun.  If the young man hadn’t had the sense enough to leave by midnight, I would hear the creak of the living room door open and Daddy would come innocently walking through as if going to the kitchen for some water.  He would look at us sitting on the couch, do an exaggerated double take at his watch, and say a long drawn out Good MORNING, even if it was only 12:01am.  And I was a junior in college!  The nerve of him…lol.  But it taught me to demand respect and respectable hours when I grew up and got my own apartment.

I remember when I worked in Charlotte, I was driving back home from visiting my parents in Columbia one night.  When I got to a rest stop near Rock Hill, I stopped to use the restroom, went back outside and the car wouldn’t start.  I called my roadside emergency company and then called my parents.  I was talking to Momma and Daddy must have heard her say the word “car” because suddenly it was him on the phone asking where I was and was there anybody around.  There wasn’t, but I said I wasn’t scared.  But deep down he must have known.  Anyway I told him I had called roadside and they should be there shortly.  Soon I saw headlights, but it wasn’t the tow trunk.  Daddy flew that car into the parking lot on what seemed like two wheels, with Momma holding onto the dashboard for dear life.  Somehow he had beaten the tow truck there.  My knees buckled I was so happy to see them.

Create loving memories with your families while you have them.  It’s awful when they are gone from this earth.  But thanks be to God for the wonderful times to look back upon and rejoice.  The cherished moments can turn the pain into laughter, and helps ease the way a little, like salve upon a wound.  Thanks Daddy for everything, and much love always.

My Stomach Sank Just A Little

May 10, 2012

Update:  On Friday, June 26, 2015, the Supreme Court ruled that same-sex unions are now to be recognized as legal marriages in all 50 states. This original blog below expressed my thoughts three years ago when it was up to individual states to decide the legality of it all. It even more so reflects my feelings now that it has become the law of the land, and I feel compelled to post it again. Thank you.

“My stomach sank just a little”. These were the words spoken by a pastor Wednesday evening after President Barack Obama infamously became the first sitting American President to support same-sex marriage. I have to admit that these words also come very close to describing the tightening feeling knotted in my own gut the moment I heard the President’s interview. I’ll tell you why. continue reading