Anger, Fear, and Lies

Nothing hangs over our heads. From our past, or in our future, nothing looms large over the sanctity of our souls. Our dignity comes from our Rescuer, and in Him there is only Love that drives out fear of punishment. And amazingly, when I accept that truth, and stop beating myself up for my perceived failures, Jesus’ grace grows large and covers my weakness with His power. But I have to recognize the voices speaking to me. I must be vigilant to name them and call them out. Fear, accusation, shame - not of Jesus. Hope, restoration, peace - His Spirit.

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Carly MoralesComment
When You're Not on the Same Page

I’d like to suggest two principles that will help close the distance when you’re on different pages, or maybe reading in different books. These aren’t a t- do list to make all your problems go away, but like we discussed last week, conflict is a naturally occurring part of life, and we might as well gather some tools to help us meet it in a constructive, healthy way.

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Carly MoralesComment
Conflict for Introverts 101

To avoid the overwhelming hurt that conflict causes in me, in the past I have often found myself not speaking my mind so as not to start a conflict, trying to diffuse the conflict between other people with humor or softness, blurring the lines of honesty if I think the truth will hurt someone else, or holding on to hurt feelings for much longer than was healthy to avoid adding to the hurt with a potential argument.

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Carly MoralesComment
Scriptural Gender Roles in Marriage

There are essentially two questions every couple must ask themselves - What does the Bible say about gender roles in marriage? and What does society & culture say about gender roles in marriage? What Scripture has to say about gender roles in marriage is not negotiable in the life of a Christ-follower, as with any other topic to which Scripture speaks. Once the Scriptural foundation has been laid, you can and should run what society & culture say about gender roles through the filter of that foundation, because Scripture isn’t really exhaustive on the subject. With what remains after filtering, it’s up to the couple to decide what pieces they want to apply to their marriage.

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When Feelings Become Accusations

It’s so important for me to say, off the top, that feelings are not inherently accusations. And we shouldn’t allow ourselves to be manipulated into apologizing for our emotions because someone else doesn’t like them. Your feelings are valid simply by virtue of their existence. You don’t choose your emotional reactions to things. They just happen in your brain. But this forces us to face the question - Why, then, do people often react so defensively when we try to tell them how we feel? I think we’ve discovered an answer. We call them pseudoemotions.

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Paul MoralesComment
24 Hours & More: What Is the Shift?

When Carly and I were first married, she went through a change that we didn’t know to expect and couldn’t have anticipated. As we blindly stumbled our way through how it impacted our relationship, we came to realize that it was a change she didn’t choose consciously - it just happened. Moreover, it was a change that was (unfortunately) never going to happen to me unless I did consciously choose it. As our friends started getting married, we started to notice that it wasn’t just us. Every woman seemed to go through this change, and her husband was completely oblivious to it, and it was never going to happen to him unless he forced it to. We’ve come to call this change “the Shift,” because that’s really what it is: an identity shift. More specifically, a holistic identity shift.

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Paul MoralesComment
24 Hours & More: Talk the Talk

Nikki had been entrusted guardianship of her niece and nephew. They were forming a little family trio of their own, and then along comes David, who now has the delicate task of being a fiancé to Nikki, a caregiver to the children - but not a father. The line between “Nikki’s friend David” and “father figure” very seriously and very intentionally began at “I do” for this lovely couple, which meant David spent several months caught in a strange limbo. Teacher, cook, disciplinarian, playmate - but all informally. No pre-established rules or regulations to govern the relationships. These are the rules that we as parents or even step or foster parents can often take for granted.

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Paul MoralesComment
24 Hours & More: The Story of Mark & Kylie

One Sunday afternoon, we got a phone call from Mark & Kylie. They said that, after considerable prayer and thought, they were going to go to the courthouse in the morning and get a marriage license. We applauded their bravery and their obedience - but something in our souls still felt wrong. This whole decision was predicated upon their strong desire to honor God with their relationship by whatever means necessary. Their marriage should begin the same way. So we asked if we could throw them a wedding…

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Paul MoralesComment