Hello and thanks for stopping by my blog. If you’re looking for specific resources, be sure to check out the topics in the column to the right. Otherwise, feel free to look around! ~ Kerry

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Are You Happy?

Every day I’m more convinced that enjoyment and fulfillment are a result of right living. If we live to simply seek pleasure, we easily become self-focused, and the “happiness” that we long for completely eludes us. Genuine joy seems just beyond our grasp.

I love how Dr. Gary Smalley explains this on the Secrets DVD (Session 6). He says that Christ calls us to a life of service. When we live our lives loving and serving others, we will experience the abundant life Jesus came to offer. Jesus even said that when we lose our life, we gain it (Luke 9:24).

I believe this is why so few people live happy lives . . . they think that doing pleasurable things will bring happiness. But God’s ways are always so much different than ours. He wants us to love Him with ALL our heart, soul, mind, and strength, and to love others. Because we were created for these loving relationships, we will never be truly fulfilled by anything else. Serving and loving God and others really does bring an abundant life!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Year 1959

1959 was a significant year for our family. You see, on June 7, 1959 Ted Clarensau married Fran DeNoon, and on October 24, 1959 Phil Ramsey married Helen Osborne. Mike and I were the firstborn children of these two young couples.

Last weekend we celebrated Ted and Fran’s 50th wedding anniversary, and we will celebrate with my parents over Thanksgiving. As we were driving home from our recent celebration in Kansas City, I was sweetly overwhelmed as I considered the countless ways these two couples continue to bless our lives and the lives of our adult children.

Our parents committed their lives to Christ when Mike and I were babies. They raised us in homes that consistently prioritized the worship of God, obedience to God, and a strong commitment to marriage and family.

Recently I’ve been reading the story of Israel in the Old Testament. I can’t help but notice the clear demonstration of blessing for those who trust and obey the Lord. He blessed those who gave their whole hearts to Him and obeyed Him consistently. God led them, fought for them, and provided for them. And conversely, when the Israelites were unfaithful to God, their choices led them into horrible situations. First Chronicles 9:1 says, “The people of Judah were taken captive to Babylon because of their unfaithfulness.” Sin always leads to bondage of some kind!

Yet I feel so blessed to have parents and in-laws who consistently love and obey God, love one another, and love us. Our lives have been marked with so much freedom—freedom from the pain of infidelity, addiction, abuse, crime, . . . Their choices provided the type of freedom that only dwells within a safe and secure home. I love all four parents so much for tenaciously pursuing righteousness and love!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Secrets for Unmarried Women

“Will Secrets benefit women who are single or single-again?” Several people asked this question at a recent conference, and my answer was always YES! The principles from Secrets are important for every woman, no matter what her stage of life or marriage.

As I wrote Secrets, I taught it to a large group of women in my church. Several in the class were single or divorced women. Shortly after our final session, a divorced woman told me, “This class has been so healing for me. I thought our divorce was all his fault, and I have been extremely bitter and angry. But now I see that I could have responded differently, and I’ve actually taken responsibility for the woman I am. I know if God brings me a second chance at marriage, I will be a different person for allowing His Word to shape my ideas.”

Another single divorcee and 7 young unmarried women attend my current Secrets small group. All of them are able to apply the ideas to their unique situations—and improve their interactions with men at home, work, school, and church. Several of the young women have expressed gratitude for the opportunity to learn these principles before they are in a relationship.

Quite honestly, I wish I heard these truths before I was married. I’m sure many lessons I would still have learned the “hard way,” but the principles would have been there to guide me. So I absolutely love sharing these secrets with my unmarried friends—it is a great way to invest in their futures!

Since I believe that Secrets is beneficial for women in all stages of life, I have written questions to help single women apply the principles from each session. Please encourage the single women in your life to use these discussion questions to help make Secrets even more applicable.

Click here to download discussion questions for unmarried women (PDF).