Created to be his Help Meet – Ch. 2 : A Merry Heart

26 Jan
A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. – Proverbs 17:22 (ESV)

A joyful (merry) heart is good medicine. This is true in more ways than one! It helps to keep you healthy and it helps to heal when you are ill. In this chapter of Created to be his Help Meet, Debi Pearl shows us the benefits of having a merry heart and the horrible effects of having a crushed spirit. While I’m the last person to ever promote the ridiculous notion of self-esteem, I do believe it is good to consistently examine yourself to see where you stand with God, with your family, and with your health.

For a while now I’ve been leaning more towards being one with a crushed spirit rather than having a merry/joyful heart. My entire life I have always been very focused on myself and my own well-being — especially in my teens and into my 20’s. Our entire culture screams “Go you! Go you!” “Do what you want to do!” and I bought into it. Since I have been married, my focus has changed pretty drastically and definitely has improved, but lately over the past 2 1/2 years I have remained bitter on a few specific areas in our life. So, I decided to make a list of a few things that would result from me choosing to have a merry heart vs. a crushed spirit. This is what I came up with.

If I have a Merry (joyful) Heart:

– God is GLORIFIED! :o) That alone is reason enough to have a merry heart.
– My husband will be happier, joyous, and more willing to love and cherish me the way that he ought to.
– My household will run much smoother.
– My health will improve (and perhaps…my face will clear up….haha)
– My entire outlook on life would improve dramatically.

A Crushed Spirit:

In this chapter we find a rather long response by Debi written to a woman who wrote to her about her husband who had been emotionally cheating on her with another woman. To sum up Debi’s response, it was quite the opposite of what many in the world would tell you to do. This is a case you would typically see result in divorce. Debi’s advice to this woman was not to bring her husband down even further by criticizing him, but rather try to bring him back to his senses, back to his promise. She basically told the woman to maintain a “merry heart” and to make an effort to “win” her man back by treating him the the way that a wife should. I remember first reading this story over two years ago while I was at my beach (Oceanside, oh how I miss you Oceanside…), I was 21 years old, just about to get married, and I think that it was at that moment that I decided the word “divorce” would never be mentioned in our household. I have seen the devastating results of divorce and had long since decided that I would never participate in such a disgraceful act, but after reading this story, I realized that even infidelity is not enough to break apart a marriage and it was very encouraging to me. I know my husband would never even think to do such a thing, but by knowing that if we choose to follow God’s will for a husband and wife ( such as having a merry heart when affliction strikes), we would make it through something as terrible as infidelity. That gave me the encouragement I needed to know that we will make it through everything we go through, because God is first in our marriage.

By having a merry heart we wives are able to be a help meet to our husbands, by having a crushed spirit we are only serving ourselves and fulfilling our purposes as wives. Having a crushed spirit and a ‘poor me’ attitude could indeed be detrimental to your relationship with your husband and could lead him to seek love and respect elsewhere.

My goals this week are to:

1) You guessed it… smile more! 🙂
2) Be JOYFUL! Work on having a cheerful countinance and glow.
3) Worry less.
4) Continue to find new ways to help my husband.
5) Never critisize my husband or say anything that would be disrespectful to him. I’ve made a point ever since our Wedding to not treat him poorly but even so – I’m still a sinner and I still disrespect him sometimes.

Other Participants in this Book Study:

Christina @ A Homemaker’s Journey

Tammie @ Book of Remembrance

Continue on to the next chapter: A Thankful Spirit

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4 Responses to “Created to be his Help Meet – Ch. 2 : A Merry Heart”

  1. Elder Family January 28, 2009 at 10:35 pm #

    I saw a post you left on another blog that mentioned you are reading “Created to Be His Helpmeet.” I’m currently re-reading that book for the second time in about 6 months. The first time I read it, it was a borrowed copy and I felt like I needed to hurry through it. So I bought a copy for myself and am now working through it. This book has been such an eye opener for me. I’ve really been working on having a merry heart. I hope it is going well for you and that you will grow from it as I have.

  2. Tammie January 29, 2009 at 1:30 am #

    you did a good job analyzing and applying this chapter, Shaina. may the Lord grant you abundant grace to accomplish all you desire!

  3. Christina January 30, 2009 at 5:06 pm #

    This is really good. I appreciate seeing the different perspective you bring out. btw, did you see my mom’s post?

  4. Sabrina February 3, 2009 at 10:41 pm #

    After reading that you were going to start this study, I ordered the book online, and have now caught up with you. Cant wait to read whatyou have to say about the other chapters! What a refreshing book

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