Tuesday, August 25, 2015

5 Things I Wish I Had Known About Pornography Before I Got Married

I love my husband. He is a godly man, and I respect him more than any other man in the world. Though he is influenced by his history, his past does not define him. I share this information with Joshua's encouragement. We want to help others break free from the bondage of pornography. It destroys hearts, marriages, families, and society. But most important, pornography addiction destroys your relationship with God. It is our prayer that, by being transparent and honest about the struggles in our own lives, Joshua and I can help someone else overcome this sin and heal from the destruction pornography brings. There is forgiveness in Christ, and through Him there is victory.


Before Joshua and I officially started courting, he told me that he had been involved in pornography. He wanted to make that clear before I committed to a relationship with him so that I knew exactly who he was and who he had previously been. He told me how sorry he was for his actions and the way his past would affect our future, and he asked me to forgive him. His complete honesty and humility impressed me.

Joshua’s confession came as no surprise. Perhaps I was a little jaded, but at least I wasn’t na├»ve. Few men escape childhood and adolescence unscarred by pornography’s claws, and I knew that no matter who I married the likelihood of my future husband having a history of porn use was extremely high. Even so, I was not as aware of the effects of pornography as I would like to have been. I knew it would affect our marriage, but I didn’t know how much. Here are five things about pornography that I wish I could go back and tell my unmarried self:

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Livin' On Love: Making Ends Meet While Living on a Single Income

When my husband and I first got married in July 2011, I was a homemaker and Joshua was working two part-time jobs that kept him away from home 16 hours a day. That lasted about a month before we realized his work schedule was not good for our marriage. I mean, we had seen each other for more waking hours before we got married! He quit his job with Riceland and continued to work for FedEx. Two years and two babies later, we were still making it on a single, part-time income. It was challenging and stressful at times. We often went without certain things that most people think of as necessities. But we were happy, our family was healthy, and we were living that way purposefully.

We had several things going for us which helped make it possible for me to stay home. We lived in Marion, Arkansas at the time, which is a relatively inexpensive area. We both went into marriage debt-free and didn’t have the stress of having to pay back loans. We also went into marriage with a little bit of savings built up (this ended up paying for our first homebirth). This all definitely helped, but even without these blessings we would have tried our best to find a way to let me stay home. It is so important to both the physical and the spiritual wellbeing of our family.

Once Joshua quit Riceland we were typically bringing home around $1600 a month. It wasn’t easy. It can be frustrating to live on a tight budget and have to watch every penny. It was sometimes lonely when everyone else from church went out to eat and we went home to peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. But it was so worth it for me to be able to stay home with my babies and actually see and spend time with my husband!

I know that not everyone is able to live this way. This article is not intended to convince you that being a homemaker is best (although I believe it is). It is not meant for those who have no desire to remain home full-time. I am writing this article for those of you who deeply long to be home with your family but who need help figuring out ways to make it work financially. And for those of you who are already doing these things - keep on keeping on! I want to offer you the encouragement that it IS possible and that it IS worth the sacrifices it takes to live on one income. 

Here are some of the things we did to make it possible to live on a single, part-time income for our first two and a half years of marriage: