Sex Before Marriage {Part 1}: Everyone is Doing it, RIGHT!?

 Sex God's Way

  We live in a “IF if feels good, DO IT” world.  And with that, has come a shift of self-seeking, self-pleasing, self-honoring living.

  Believers are losing their way, because life is more focused on pleasing self, than God.

  The Bible is so so clear on the issue of sex and the beautiful gift it is, yet, so many God-fearing, Christian couples skip over that part of The Word.  Living together, sleeping together;  all before marriage…..

  “It’s just a piece of paper that makes sex legal,” the World tells us, “you wouldn’t buy a car without test driving it first, would you?”

  “You are going to get married anyways……” the devil whispers in the ears of engaged couples trying to wait but failing time and time again.

  But God says in John 14:23 “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching…..”

  Simply put, your obedience to God is a demonstration of your love for Him.

  Easy enough, right? 

  I know you and your boyfriend or girlfriend love each other, but God wants you to put your love for Him FIRST, before your future spouse!  This is a HUGE part of your life to come, and the very foundation your entire marriage and life together is built on.

  When you disobey the order that the Lord has laid out for you, you actually rob yourself of the blessings to come.  Not only that, anytime you disobey God’s directions there are always consequences to pay.

  I Corinthians 6:18 Run from sexual sin! No other sin so clearly affects the body as this one does. For sexual immorality is a sin against your own body.

  I will never forget my 8th Birthday. I had been playing Super Spy Girl and had found all 3 of my birthday gifts before my party.  I thought I was so cool!  I would often sneak into the closet to peek at them one more time in the weeks before my birthday. 

  Guess who was totally bummed on her big day?

Yup, me.

  I thought it would be awesome to know what I was getting for my birthday ahead of time, but I was sadly disappointed.  Sneaking a peek at my gifts had robbed me of the joy of experiencing them for the first time as I pulled off the wrapping.

    The Bible also states…….

I Corinthians 7:9 But if they cannot control themselves, they should marry, for it is better to marry than to burn with passion.

  For this very reason, we are already encouraging our children to Court instead of Date, and to save their kisses for engagement, or the altar.  We also will be encouraging our children to have a short engagement to help control that desire until their wedding night.

  What if your fiance says you are NUTS? What if they tell you that they have needs, and they sure as heck aren’t going to start waiting for sex now!

  If your fiance does not receive what you are saying about sex before marriage, ignoring God’s commands in the process, then you may want to seriously reconsider your decision to get married. Not having the same passion towards pleasing God and obeying the Bible, will only get worse in the future, and will lead to a difficult, unequally yoked marriage.

  Let’s stop tip-toeing around the HUGE issue of these dating couples worshiping together in church, praising a God who they are BLATANTLY dishonoring in their sex-before-marriage life style.  And while we are at it, let’s stop being afraid to talk about sex inside of Marriage, where God created it to be enjoyed.    

    Let’s tell the World the truth – that Sex God’s way is far better than anything the they have experienced.

  It’s never too late for second chances, or becoming Born Again Virgins.  Christ’s death on the cross covered ALL our transgressions, including anything you have done sexually.  We ALL have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.  Let’s help each other see the truth and instructions to walk in freedom, outlined in God’s Word.   

for·ni·ca·tion (fôrn-kshn)  
NOUN:Sexual intercourse between partners who are not married to each other.

1 Corinthians 6:9-20  “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.”

  “Sexual baggage doesn’t unpack itself, it simply slips into the bed beside you and makes connecting with your spouse in spirit and truth, that much harder to do.”  Joy from Simply Bloom

  Commit your relationship to the Father, deal with past sexual partners by praying in the name of Jesus and breaking those ties.  Do this out loud, together before marriage.

   The tears and forgiveness that follow will be a new kind of intimacy, and in the long run, keep your future marriage from being tainted from the connections to those other partners.  {more on this later in the week}

  Bountiful blessings flow when you do things God’s way, instead of the Worlds way…….

Now head on over to Post 2 and learn about the Chemical Side of Sex!

~T

More info on this subject here:

http://www.crosswalk.com/family/marriage/what-does-the-bible-say-about-sex-before-marriage-510492.html

Steak Salad & Weekend Potluck #76

Hi, and Welcome to Weekend Potluck! Where friends & foodies meet and eat ALLL Weekend long!

Weekend Potluck Banner

  First up, Flashback Friday, because some things are just worth repeating!  Today we are flashing back to a delicious Steak Salad with Homemade Steak Sauce dressing……

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Steak Salad with Steak Sauce Dressing

Excuse the photo, this one was from WAY back in the day! But trust me, it is so GOOD!

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Now, let’s take a quick peek back at last week

The recipe with the most clicks was ~

Best 7 Chicken Dinners

Best 7 Chicken Dinners by The Shady Porch

Recipes that caught our attention ~

Crock Pot Chicken Tacos

Crock Pot Chicken Tacos by Richly Blessed

Reece’s Peanut Butter Pie

Reece’s Peanut Butter Pie by Simply Savvy Recipes

And, a personal favorite ~

Banana Butterfinger Graham Cracker Freeze

Banana Butterfinger Graham Cracker Freeze by Grandma Loy’s Kitchen

Your hostesses ~

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That 3 Letter Word…..

Today we are talking about a 3 letter word.

It begins a series on the “S” word………

SEX.

{Eeeeek!}

I know, I know, it makes people squirm and blush, but you all, as the Body of Christ, we have got to stop hiding and start talking about this!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  I have so much I want to talk to you about in this area, and I have even contacted a friend to guest post about this important topic.

We have already discussed talking to your kids about sex.  Honest and simple terms with no squirming or shaming them for asking.  If you missed it, you are in luck, your assignment for today, is to go read it here: The Birds & The Bees Post.

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  I have been working on this series for 2 months now, and I have to tell you, either I have “new car syndrome” {Where you see the new-to-you-car you now drive, EVERYWHERE!} or the Lord is prompting a lot of Christian writers to write about Sex lately.  It is EVERYWHERE!

So, here are the areas we will cover over the next few weeks:

Day 1:

Sex Before of Marriage {Part 1} : Everyone is Doing It, RIGHT!? 

Sex Before Marriage {Part 2}: The Chemical Side 

Day 2:

Saving Sex for Marriage: From Forbidden Fruit to Free Rein

Day 3:

Sex Within Marriage: Desire Not Duty

Day 4:

Being Intentional In The Bedroom: The 72 Hour Challenge

Day 5:

No More Excuses {Part 1}: Overcoming Inhibitions In The Bedroom

No More Excuses {Part 2} :  23 Ways To Turn Up The Heat

Day 6:

{Part 1} Returning to Intimacy After Betrayal 

{Part 2} Sex After Infidelity: 8 Steps To Success

Day 7:

Sexual Addiction: Roadblock to Intimacy

Resources For Sex Gods Way

This series is going to knock your socks, er…pants off?!

~T

red hot monogamy

Happy 10th Birthday to Destiny!

  Eeek! How is this little Punkin 10 already?!  Destiny is growing up into such a young lady, and has blessed us this summer with her servants heart, and desire to learn the things of the kitchen.  This foodie Momma is EXCITED about that part.  🙂

  Here is my baby then:

Destiny collage

And here is my baby now:

Destiny 1Destiny 2Destiny 3Destiny 4Destiny 5Destiny 6Destiny 7075 copyDestiny 9Destiny 10Destiny 11Destiny 12lantern140 copy133 copy139 copy

  Happy 10th Birthday to my beautiful Destiny Joy!

Your smile lights up my heart and our home, and you are the BEST big sister any kid could ask for.  We are blessed to have you in our family and I am so so excited to see the Lord shaping and molding you into the little lady He has called you to be!

Love you, Punkin!

~Momma

This year, instead of having a friend over to celebrate with, Destiny chose for her Daddy & I to take her on a big girl date.  She didn’t want wrapped presents, but to shop for her own items.  I have a big series coming up, so I am out of days to share this post with you.

   Instead, I uploaded the photos of her special date night, complete with a BIG surprise she has been waiting a whole year for, to my personal Facebook page and shared it to the 4 little Ferguson’s wall.  Check it out!

Happy Birthday Destiny

Cucumber Caprese Salad

  This is my FAVORITE Gotta Have It, Tastes Like Summer, Salad!  This recipe comes from my Mother In Law, except she doesn’t use a recipe, so here goes nothing.  Play with portions as you see fit!

Cucumber Caprese Salad

{click title to print}

Cucumber Caprese Salad (2)

Ingredients

  • 2 cups Cherry Tomatoes
  • 2 whole Cucumbers, Sliced with a Crinkle Cutter Then Halved
  • 2 cups Fresh Mini Mozzarella Balls
  • ½ teaspoons Kosher Salt
  • 5 whole Basil Leaves, Roughly Chopped
  • 1-½ cup Balsamic Vinegar, Reduced

Preparation Instructions

In a small saucepan, bring balsamic vinegar to a boil. Cook for 10 to 20 minutes, or until balsamic has reduced and thickened like a glaze. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
Wash 2 cups cherry tomatoes, slice cucumbers and do a rough chop on your basil leaves.
In a bowl, combine cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, basil, drained Mozz balls and kosher salt. Toss carefully with balsamic glaze. Serve cold.

  These can also be plated as an appetizer, just put 1 tomato, 1 cucumber half slice and 1 mini mozzarella ball on a toothpick!  Makes a beautiful platter for your summer party!!!!!

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Enjoy!

~T

Cucumber Caprese Salad (1)

4 little Fergusons in Colorado

  Dale’s family just had a reunion in Silverthorne, Colorado.  The last one was 10 years ago, and I was stuck at home, 4 weeks from delivering Destiny Joy.  Little did we know, I would go into false labor and have 3 minute apart contractions while Dale was high on the mountain top with no cell phone reception.

  Needless to say, several {11} panicked phone calls later, Dale sped back home to me……and then waited a month.  {sigh}  That was not too fun. 

Who has 3 minute apart contractions for a MONTH!?

Oh wait. ME. 

Every single time. 

Anyhow, this time I got to go along, and we had such a fun time.  Grandpa and Grandma have 10 children, and Dale lived with them in Highschool, so they all forget he is a Cousin not an Uncle to their kiddos.

  Here are photos from our fun trip:

  Ever since we did our 18 hour car trip to Georgia, we feel so much more prepared to handle road trips that seem short in comparison!  Destiny went ahead a few days early with her Cousin and BFF, Brooklyn.  We all missed her terribly! Co 1IMG_0764 copy

  All 50+ of us stayed in one big house, ages 8-82.  It was really awesome!  If you are going to Colorado with a big group, please check out Summit Peaks Riverside Lodge, you will NOT be sorry!!!  We rented East and West sides of the house, so we had a 2 sided kitchen, 2 dining areas, a living and a family room and two floors of bedrooms and bathrooms. It was great! They were even so kind to loan us a kitchen aid for homemade cinnamon rolls one morning.  Great people to work with!

  If you book this, please tell them that Tonya Ferguson sent you!!!!

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  Also a bonus, there is a park within walking distance from the house.  Co 3

    There was plenty of times for games, nature walks and just catching up!co 4Co 5Co 6IMG_0589 copy

  One afternoon we headed out for a 2 hour train ride up the mountain….Co 7IMG_0599 copyCo 9Co 10

  Then it was SKIT NIGHT!  I think these photos tell the story well. Needless to say, everyone had a good time.Co 11

  One afternoon, we headed up to Brekenridge in the “Bubbles” as Paxton called them.

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   We even got to hike up the oh-so steep mountain side to climb a big snow pile.  I am no skier, but I can tell you I plan to keep it that way!  I could barely stand walking up and down the slope, let alone thinking about flying down them at uncontrolled speeds.  Plus, pizza for my family would’ve been $60.  Not happening……but it was fun for a mini visit! 🙂

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 We made sure to get some family photos before we all took off for the fireworks.  You can’t beat the Mountains as your backdrop!

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Grandma got the giggles during their part of the shoot.  I still don’t know what is funny, but these photos are some of my favorite, EVER.  You can tell after 60 years, their love has only grown stronger.co 15Co 16IMG_1206 copyIMG_1217 copyco 17

And of course, we couldn’t pass up re-creating this old timey photo of 6 of the 10 siblings!co 18Flashback Collage 2

Mission Accomplished.

  We enjoyed Fireworks over Dillon Lake, headed back late with some super sleepy kiddos and I packed in the darkened room for our return trip home.

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  We hit the road mid morning July 5th, and headed back to our Home Sweet Home. That trip home is never any fun, is it!?!

  The kids did great, but this Momma was sure dreading life and laundry, bills and returning phone calls that awaited us when we arrived.

  We had an amazing time, and I am so blessed to be a part of such a close-knit and FUN family!

And with such stinkin’ adorable Grandparents to boot!  Winking smile

~T

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What Will The Harvest Of Your Home Bring?

 Being a Mom is EXHAUSTING!

Who are these kids?

  And some days we loose our cool……

grumpy mom

  If your daily words and actions are planting seeds in the Garden of your Children’s Lives, what WILL the Harvest of your Home bring?

  Today is my day to share at Marathon Mom! Come on over to read more….

~T

2 Years Ago Today

 What is a date on the calendar really?  

All those little squares, empty and waiting for us to fill with our busy lives.

  A place to jot notes.

 Record and remember important events like birthdays, doctors appointments, school functions, and anniversaries, we can’t forget those…..

  My calendar today has a red circle around the number 10.   

Next to it, a heart with a jagged line running through it, and a year: 2011.

The day & year of Dale’s “Truth”.

d & t

  Could it really only be 2 years ago today, that my world so drastically changed?  

It feels like a LIFETIME has gone by.

  Last year at this time, I bawled my way through the day.  Raw and having just told our story to the world, after keeping it quiet for nearly 9 months.  

  Interesting isn’t it, that just like the timeline of a newborn baby, our story took 9 months to grow and change, to prepare itself for the big reveal on April 30th, 2012.  

 You know, as I sit here and look down at my calendar, it doesn’t MEAN anything.  It doesn’t make my heart race, or skip a beat, no tears come to my eyes.  This year July 10th, is just a date on the calendar.  

  The timeline of the last two years has included brokeness, sharing, fearing our truth, then owning it loudly, obeying when it would’ve been easier to hide, loving, rebuilding, crying and laughing, good days and bad days, forgiveness and bitterness.

  But this date no longer owns me, and I am happy to tell you that today.

d and t

 Because someone, somewhere, is laboring along the same path Dale and I did, raw and broken, barely making it at times. They needed to hear this today.   I am writing to you today, broken one, to give you hope.  

  Hope that even 2 years later, just 2 short years after your truth, you CAN have victory, love, laughter, joy and peace by the supernatural healing of Christ Jesus our Lord.  

IMG_1372 honey

  Most counselors will tell you, that average number of years to heal from infidelity are 5-7.  And that’s ok, you take all the time you need.  But just hear me, that if you allow the Lord to lead every single step in this healing process, in the forgiveness that has to happen, then peace and joy return quickly.  Even 2 years later, you can feel whole and happy again.

  You know, maybe, just maybe, when I transfer important events to my 2014 calendar, I will skip over this one.

July 10th, 2011

  Or, maybe not.

  After all, it is a huge turning point in the timeline of our lives.

 Not for the horror it caused, but for the good that came up out of the muck and mire.  The beauty that came from deep inside those ashes.  The way our love grew deeper and stronger than we EVER thought possible.

What doesn’t break you, DOES make you stronger.

  July 10th, 2013 makes me proud of us, of how strongly we stand, united by tragedy turned triumph.  Thankful to the Lord for comforting us and carrying us after the fall.  

  Thankful that today is a glorious day, full of sunshine and joy, peace and hope………

  A date, is just a date.  

A calendar holds no meaning to our Lord, for His timeline is vastly different than our own.

I am glad for that.

~T

holding hands

Mulberry Picking, Mower Races & A Simple Summer Supper

  Thanks for letting me have a break yesterday.  Phew, it was a crazy day.  The worst part of the vacation has to be either the drive home, or the pile of laundry, bills and phone call messages to swim through.  I have lots of photos to share from our Colorado trip, but I am going to need some time to weed through them.  So instead, you are getting some “Summer Snaps” from life at the Ferguson household………

  We have Mulberry trees the grow all over our back yard.  They make a terrible mess, the chickens eat them and poo purple, and the kids get them all over their shoes.  {Which is why there is a STRICT no play shoes in the house rule!} 

  But, boy are they sweet and yummy and FREEEEEEEE!  We pop em in our mouths, green stem and all, and they are delicious.  Every once in a while, when I am feeling generous, I let the kids have them on a teeny tiny dollop of Breyer’s Vanilla ice cream. 

  Yeah, I am cool like that.  😉

  Next time we will wait to do our Mulberry gathering until Daddy comes home, so he can help us do the ol’ shake the tree with a clean sheet under it trick.  It took forever our way!  But our harvest sure tasted good!

mulberry collage censored

  I censored the following photo for the safety of my kiddos, after some perv stole a picture of Destiny fully clothed sitting on her new bedspread, we try err on the side of caution on the blog now.  The bottom right photo was of Paxton’s berry stained buns.  It was interesting to me, that when I posted the uncensored pic on my personal page, which to me feels safe, I got turned into Facebook, who removed the collage!  {sigh}  Some people!

  Do you know how many bathtub pictures and naked baby pictures I see on my newsfeed everyday? And I never once reported them.  OH! And don’t even get me started on the scantily clad women in the ads on my sidebar.

Oh well.  What can you do? 

  Moving on….

  We recently sold our John Deer mower to get a Grasshopper mower, but before we got rid of it, we held some MOWER RACES.  Guess who won?

Yup, this girl. 

  What do you mean Grasshoppers are naturally faster than John Deers?

FIIIINE, you are right, but it was still fun to lap slow traffic a couple of times. 

  After that, poor, poor, sad Paxton did not WANT to ride on the green mower anymore.  He had to wait his turn to ride with Daddy on the Grasshopper.

  As you can see by the photo below, he was not feeling it……

  Gotta love my almost 3-year-old!  We don’t call ‘em “The Trying Threes” for nothing!

mower races

  Last but not least, I re-photographed an oldie but goodie simple summer staple around here.  I enjoy seeing the changes in my photography as I learn more.  You know what they say, the only photographer you should compare yourself to, is YOU!

Potato Stick Chicken Salad

2011’s shot 

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Vs.

2013’s shot

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YAY! Improvement!  It’s so fun to work hard, and see growth.

  Now go make that salad, it’s a favorite!

Hugs, T