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Your Spouse Needs You to Be Vulnerable

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Vulnerability isn't simply the sharing of new information. You could meet a stranger on a train and share with him or her where you work and where you live and even possibly your annual salary and it still might not reach vulnerability status. 
Think about when you first started dating your spouse. Do you remember how much you were learning about this new, fun, incredible person in your life? You were amazed that they wanted to be a dentist one day, are terrified of rollercoasters, never ate a slice of pizza from New York, and are obsessed over pickles. 
The rate of new information was coming at you like the speed of light. You were learning a lot and it felt good. Most likely, intimacy was building because of mutually shared personal information. Some of it may have felt like true vulnerability but much of the information was probably just fun and interesting, at least at first. 
When we're first dating, we can live off of the sharing of new information for a while, but once all the new information has been disclosed or discovered, new depths must be reached in order for our marriage relationship to grow deeper. And our marriages most grow deeper. 
Vulnerability means to make one's self open to physical or emotional harm. Okay, that sounds dangerous and even wrong. However, the point isn't inviting someone to hurt us. The point of vulnerability is that we would allow someone in to see the weakest or most fragile aspects of our psyche, our heart, our dreams, our fears, and so much more. It's each person intentionally making themselves transparent, so that the other person can get a glimpse inside. 
That takes a lot of trust. But it's totally worth it because marital intimacy grows when vulnerability is shared. 
So, what's holding you back from inviting your spouse on a coffee date or maybe a weekend getaway to share some more things about each other that will cause your relationship to reach new depths?
Choose vulnerability. Start slow and work your way deeper. 
HINT: One of the best ways to begin is to pray with each other. 
You Are Loved!
Posted by Brent Halvorsen with

Your Church Service Doesn't Need a Scoreboard

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Nowhere in the Bible does God tell us to rate every church service we attend. Spiritual growth doesn't happen only when our opinion of a worship service reaches a nine or ten out of a perfect ten. 
In every service, there's something for each one of us. There's a priceless piece of application. There's a truth we've not previously uncovered. There's a godly emotion experienced because of some incredible lyric sung or because of a hauntingly beautiful string struck in a worship set. 
And what about the people at church? God uses people in the hallways, too. How many times have you had an interaction with someone who smiled or listened or prayed for you and it changed your day, maybe it changed your life? 
Stop looking for the "performance" to be amazing and start looking for all the many ways God is going to encourage you and bless you on Sundays. 
Your pastor doesn't have to preach like Charles Spurgeon or Billy Graham. He doesn't have to be eloquent of speech or as funny as Jerry Seinfeld. If he's not wearing cool pants and the latest designer shirt, who cares!
Ask yourself this question, "Why am I going to the church I'm going to?" Is it because it's cool, or is it because God's working there?
Your worship pastor doesn't have to wear skinny jeans and a scarf to be an awesome worship leader. He or she doesn't have to sing like Celine Dion or Bon Jovi. 
Do we want excellence? Yes. Do we need perfection? No. Absolutely not. Mostly, we need God to move. We need God to work. That's what we need. We need God's glory to come down. 
Stop waiting to decide to grow personally or to be moved or massively challenged only if the church service was a nine out of ten. If your church is pointing to Jesus, then God is working.
So, look for it next time. Look for the power of God in every nook and cranny on Sunday mornings. It's there. And God's going to change your life in some small way or even in a very large way every single Sunday
You Are Loved!
Posted by Brent Halvorsen with