Idolizing Marriage

So you say that you want to be married. That’s fantastic! However, your desire may be delayed because of your motives. Why is our society so deceived into thinking that they can’t be happy until someone else comes along to give them worth? Marriage is so great, but it cannot complete. Good things cannot fill God’s role. Marriage is meant to be a blessing, but not your purpose on earth.
Okay, before I scare you away, let me get into the point of this blog!
There are so many people out there desiring marriage. That is so good, because marriage gives us an idea of just how much God loves us. Husbands are literally told to love their wives the way that Christ loves us. If that isn’t an indicator on how serious God takes marriage, I really don’t know what is. We are blessed with the gift of sex in marriage which gives pleasure and the ability to procreate. However, the problem arises when we want to be married more than we want Jesus. We seek a spouse before we seek the God who created us. Of course the all-knowing God could tell us who to pursue and who to stay away from, but we simply just hunger so much for the fairy tale love story that we forget all about God. Too many people are expecting a story like Love and Basketball, The Notebook or a Disney channel love story. I think many of us have the idea that marriage carries us into a happily ever after without problems, but is that the case? Every “romance” movie we watch, the movie ends with the highlights! The boy finally wins her heart. That pretty girl finally gives that guy a chance and they run off into pure bliss. The couple who broke up and moved on, somehow managed to run back into each other and fate would have it that their love is rekindled.
“It is definitely God’s will that I get my fairytale!” That’s just how it should be, right?
Wrong. Relationships don’t always go according to our plans….even if we love Jesus. Divorce rates are high just for the misconception many of us believe. You must know that no matter how awesome they are, they are still human. Perfection can only be found in Jesus, so do not hold an extra high standard for someone that cannot fill it. Marriages fail when God isn’t the center, but your idea of how marriage is. You both will have work to do, but you can’t grow if you two aren’t CHOOSING to forgive, love, cherish, respect and honor even when the feelings may fade.
Ever heard someone say they want a Godly spouse or someone following Jesus, but they aren’t even following Him wholeheartedly? That will never happen, you attract who you are not necessarily who you want. If you’re pursuing Jesus, then like-minded people will be drawn towards you; if you’re a lustful person, then that kind of person will be drawn to you. It is not God’s will for you to be with anyone holding on to the world. You two are going in opposite directions if they choose to remain lukewarm or unsaved. Keep your eyes on Jesus. Wait on someone you can pursue Jesus with. Wait for the type of person that will protect your purity and encourage you to seek Christ. So many want marriage so bad that they don’t take the time to evaluate themselves or the person they are with. God does not want us with anyone leading us away from Him. Love does not lead to sin. A Godly man/woman can commit to one person. Be careful of those wasting your time with their games. Do not say “I do” to someone who hasn’t said “I do” to Jesus. Committing to someone that doesn’t love God is only setting you up for a dead end relationship. If the two of you even last, you’ll still find yourself far away from God and that wasn’t your intention.
Are you getting yourself prepared for marriage, or do you just want a honeymoon, a ring and sex? Be careful of doing right things with wrong motives. Paul did say it’s better to marry than to burn with lust/passion (1 Corinthians 7:9), but keep this in mind: if sex is the only reason you are going into marriage, you’re not ready for it. Of course no one will be perfect before marriage, but be careful of jumping into it and you’re not ready for such a great commitment. It should be until “death do you part”, not until “looks fade and you run out of money”. Remember that it’s a lifetime commitment you are preparing for so do not rush into something you can’t handle. Guys, if you don’t want to commit then leave the girl alone. Stop trying to see how many hearts you can break before “settling down”. And vice versa, because some women string men along and try to get attention from him, but won’t give him the commitment that he desires. Divorce is only common because we are seeking guilt-free sex, a wedding celebration, someone to control and manipulate rather than a best-friend we can honor Christ and grow with.
Think about it, your heart is too valuable to just jump into marriage and you weren’t prepared for it. Rushing will lead our vulnerable hearts into sin, brokenness and wasted time. Choose today to be patient, wait on God to lead you and not our emotions that can easily change. His timing is perfect.
Grace and peace,
Tovares Grey

My Friends Don't Understand my Walk with God

Living for God is such an amazing experience that we get to enjoy daily. He changes our lives from the inside out and delivers us from many things that used to keep our hearts in bondage. Unfortunately, our “friends” don’t always see it that way. What makes it even worse is when our “Christian” friends don’t support us. I can understand a nonbeliever questioning my desire to pray or fast, but not a Christian. I can understand an atheist saying negative things about my attempt at a disciplined life, but not someone in the “church”.
“Bro, you are doing way too much!”
“Girl, chill. Stop acting overly spiritual.”
“Don’t be so ‘heavenly minded’ that you’re no earthly good.”
“I get that you say you want to do right, but all of those things are just leading to legalism or a self-righteous approach of earning God’s love.”
I have heard these things said to me and to others before; but what if I told you that your friend was doing you more harm than good by saying those things? What if they want to help you, but their “good advice” is not “God advice?” What if God is actually calling you into a deeper place of intimacy, but you will never experience it because of your company?
Anyone that makes you feel bad for being passionate about living for God is a distraction from the enemy. It is best to keep a healthy distance and pray for them, instead of having them keep you comfortable in a stagnant walk with God. I am not advocating for foolish or weird behavior, because God will use friends to explain the scriptures to us and tell us when we are viewing things wrong. I am saying that there should be no one in your inner circle that doesn’t want to see you grow into who God is calling you to be.
Let’s look at 3 major things every believer should do when their friends don’t support their walk with God:
1. Examine your friends.
I’m just going to make this plain, everyone isn’t meant to be your close friend. Jesus is our example of how to love and treat others, and even Jesus had an inner circle. Jesus preached to masses, did life with 12 disciples, and yet He only called Peter, James and John for certain situations. Did he love them more than the others? No, not at all, but He had a different purpose for them and possibly a deeper level of intimacy with them.
If your friends stop you from growing, then you two must address it or slowly drift apart. If your friends are struggling with the same issues as you, then accountability is hard. Instead of having the wisdom to help you out of it or the boldness to rebuke you in love, they will give you a pass (because they are struggling).
So again, check if your friends are growing and keeping you accountable. If they aren’t, they should not be in your inner circle.

“Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, WITH THEM that call on the Lord out of a pure heart.” (2 Timothy 2:22)

2. Challenge your friends!
This is something many never do because of fear, but why be afraid if the person wants to be in your life? Jesus had a rich, young ruler coming to him that seemed to have it all together. Jesus gave him one command, to sell his possessions and give it to the poor. However, the guy didn’t do it, and he went away sorrowful. What I find interesting about this is that Jesus never chased behind him. Too many of us are running behind people that God is not sending to us. If they aren’t willing to meet certain standards or to make any sacrifices, they aren’t willing to be in your life. If you are only valuable to them when it is convenient for them, that is not the will of God for your circle. Stop thinking you can’t push your friends to grow with you. If you aren’t doing so, you aren’t a good enough friend to them.
If I cannot tell you that you’re living beneath your purpose, I don’t love you. I should be able to genuinely say “get it together, you’re better than that” without it being taken as judgment. If you don’t have friends that do that, challenge them to challenge you. Pray for God to send people who will push you!

Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful. (Proverbs 27:6)

3. Be willing to find friends that don’t look or think like you.
This may sound simple, but this is one of the hardest tasks for a person. We will always naturally gravitate to those who look or think like us. It doesn’t matter if it’s politics or sports; we will feel more at ease when the person we are conversing with has things in common with us. Like for me, I have a few friends that act just like me. We can laugh and joke literally all day. The problem with that though is they will have my same issues so they may not pull me out of my spiritual valley. It wasn’t until recently when I started making friends with people who are of different races, denominations, financial status, various cultures, etc. that I hadn’t seen some things with a clear perspective. That’s like me being a guy with a Jamaican background and not going out to eat a lot when I was younger. So now when my wife and I want to go out or friends invite us out to eat, I don’t even know what to pick. Not because I’m super picky, I’m just not familiar with a lot and in need of someone to expose me to it.
How much is God trying to show you, but you aren’t able to see because it looks unfamiliar? How many people has God sent your way to push you into purpose, but you ignored them for being too “churchy”, “different” or too “weird”? Jesus gave Ananias clear instructions on what to do in Paul’s conversion. However, he knew how Paul used to persecute the church. God had to take him out of his comfort zone in order for Paul to be delivered, because he was possibly afraid of the things Paul would do to him. People may not be used to you or you with them, but you need others in order for you to be who God called you to be.

But the Lord said to him, “Go, for he is a chosen instrument of mine to carry my name before the Gentiles and kings and the children of Israel. (Acts 9:15 ESV)

Your environment will play a major role in determining your destiny. God wants to bless your life and it requires the right people on your team and the wrong people can delay that calling. Not only can they delay purpose, but bad company will corrupt good morals (1 Corinthians 15:33).
Grace and peace,
Tovares Grey

Stop Chasing Butterflies

I receive many questions from people who want to know how can they tell if someone is the one for them. We’ve made a YouTube video about the concept of “the one” and wrote a blog about knowing how you can tell if they’re the one for you, you should check it out if you haven’t already. However, it confuses me when someone says they’re with someone who’s amazing and loves God, treats them right, but something is missing.
“Well…. what’s missing?”
“I don’t know. I just don’t have those butterflies I’d expect to have.”

“The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” (Jeremiah 17:9)

Can I tell you something that you know, but can easily forget? Your feelings will destroy you. Your feelings will have you running back to relationships that God delivered you out of. Your feelings will have you running back to abusive relationships, because you’re focused on memories instead of reality. Your feelings will have you thinking it’s okay to to let your flesh take control, but you know in your heart what God is telling you to do.
If you want to know true love, look at the Bible’s definition of it (1 Corinthians 13). Too many expect life to be like Love and Basketball or The Notebook. All of these Disney and movie fantasies will have you ignoring your blessing that you’re praying about. Many people want a godly relationship, but when they have a godly person in their lives that’ll correct them when they’re falling or lukewarm, they take it as judgement. So you want a godly relationship, but you don’t want God? Some people claim they want true love, but they really just want someone they can post on social media. Just because all of your friends are dating or married, that doesn’t mean God is telling you to do the same.
Don’t get me wrong, I love being married, but I honestly believe many of us don’t understand that marriage is way more than we think. We have to understand that marriage is a ministry as well and God has to prepare us for it. I honestly believe our motives are what causes us to have our blessings delayed (read more about that here).

“(For we walk by faith, not by sight:)” 2 Corinthians 5:7

I’ve learned that we live in a generation of people that are driven by emotions (see Provers 30:12). We disregard the word of God, and we go by opinions instead of scripture. We don’t like correction, because our feelings are placed higher than God at times.

“There is a generation that are pure in their own eyes, and yet is not washed from their filthiness.” (Proverbs‬ ‭30:12‬)

There are days when my marriage isn’t all sunshine and roses. I absolutely love my wife and our marriage is great (she said so as well, so don’t think I’m being dramatic lol). However, that does NOT mean we are happy every single waking moment of the day. There are some days when it’s like she can’t wait to hug me, and there are some times when I’m sure her hands just want to hug my neck. If we go by those days when there are no “butterflies”, we’d foolishly think God didn’t bring us together. When we don’t feel those “butterflies”, does that mean it’s time to jump ship? No. It’s time to keep cultivating our love so it doesn’t die out.
Does that mean I’m telling you to settle? NO, PLEASE DON’T SETTLE. I get butterflies when I’m around my wife still. But you have to understand feelings should not dictate your future. Pray regarding that person. If God gives you peace regarding them and He gives you confirmation to keeping the relationship, then don’t give up on them just because you don’t feel happy all the time.
Grace and peace.

No Lust November

Welcome to the first day of #NoLustNovember! Everyone is familiar with “No Shave November”, but I wanted to do a weird twist on it and give Christians something they can relate to. This is a challenge for everyone to jump in on. I’ll be checking for this hashtag on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter and talking to you all so we all can hold one another accountable. 
Before you go any further, I have a blog on “Fighting Lust” that you can read here if you haven’t already. 

“There is a generation that are pure in their own eyes, and yet is not washed from their filthiness.” (Proverbs‬ ‭30:12‬)

One of the most dangerous things a believer can do is assume that they have it all together. The Bible says to be careful when you think you’re standing firm because that is when you’ll fall (1 Corinthians 10:12).
Many Christians are under the impression that they cannot fall into sexual temptation. I used to be one of those. I would wonder how are people being so gullible and consistently falling into the same sin, but I realized with my own struggles that it wasn’t something as simple as I assumed. Then there are other Christians that believe they cannot break that cycle over their lives, but that’s because they aren’t properly following God and establishing boundaries. Understand this, falling into sexual sin is common. I am not saying this to justify anyone’s sinful lifestyle. I am saying that so you can know as a reader that you can overcome in Jesus’ name and you don’t have to keep hiding your weakness. God’s strength is made perfect in your weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9).
Be willing to let go. 

But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart. And if thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell. (Matthew 5:28-29)

When you talk about overcoming lust, many people target the symptoms rather than the real issue. So they’ll be willing to stop watching a certain show, but they won’t end the relationship. Or they will end the relationship, but they’ll still check up on the person. Sometimes we even overcome and then turn back to our filth. What I have realized is, Jesus isn’t a passive God. Jesus was so drastic in His teaching that many didn’t like Him and many turned away. If we aren’t willing to cut off what stimulates lust, are we tired of that lifestyle? No, we enjoy it but we don’t want its consequences. Sin never satisfies, it only pushes you to go further and further away from the presence of God. Are you disgusted with your sin yet? Ask God to remove those desires. Stop entertaining those desires and watch that sinful desire begin to fade out of your life. 
Be willing to examine your heart and take spiritual inventory. Some people shouldn’t still be in your life. Some shows shouldn’t still be on your tv. Some social media accounts should’ve been unfollowed months ago. Are you willing to let go of your past life to embrace what God has for you?

“But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.” (‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭2:9‬)

What are you going to choose today? Your porn or Jesus? Your fornicating/adulterous relationship or Jesus? Your ungodly friendships or Jesus? Your music that corrupts your heart or Jesus? Your feelings or Jesus? Your lust or Jesus? Your pride or Jesus? 

“For my people have committed two evils; they have forsaken me the fountain of living waters, and hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no water.” (Jeremiah‬ ‭2:13‬)

This scripture shows us that we as the people of God can easily backslide and choose things that can’t satisfy. The woman who met Jesus at the well was searching for Jesus, but she didn’t know it. No man could satisfy. She went from man to man and still never found true love until she met Jesus. That’s you and I. Searching for something to satisfy, and I’m here to tell you that you don’t have to choose lust anymore. 
So what do you say…….Challenge accepted? 
This journey is for everyone, but I don’t expect everyone to participate. If you desire more of God and less of that sinful cycle, then let’s get this party started! Jesus satisfies, trust me. Let’s not turn back. Forget what you did before starting this and let’s go back to the cross and the plan of God. 
What I need you to do!
1. Post a picture everyday with the hashtag #NoLustNovember so we can be engaged together! 
2. Post a verse, prayer, or your journal talking about what God is sharing with you on this challenge. 
3. Don’t judge anyone, just grow! 
4. Don’t quit WHEN you make a mistake. Not if! 
Grace and peace. 

5 things ALL Singles Need to do!

There are a few things every single should do before they think about marriage. Besides, why pray for something that you aren’t preparing yourself to handle? It’s easy to lose your blessing when your character isn’t ready to maintain it. So here are five quick things to do before marriage:
1. Seek God
One drastic thing people forget to do is to seek God. The first step to finding a “godly relationship” is to first find God. We often think a relationship will build our walk with God, but we must first have a relationship with God. Dating the wrong person can also slow it down. If you aren’t growing spiritually already, then you’ll only be more distracted when someone else is in your life. 
We have to first see God as number one in our lives and build our lives around our walk with Him, or else when someone becomes a part of our walk we will eventually fall so in love with them that we fail to realize that God isn’t anywhere in that equation. 
God can’t bless a relationship that excludes Him. So be sure you’re seeking Christ so you’ll find someone else who’s actively doing the same thing. 
“Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.” Proverbs‬ ‭3:5-6‬ ‭
2. Stop seeking unsaved people to convert and marry.
Many times we fall into sin or end up heartbroken is because we pursued what God didn’t want us to have. You see, God wouldn’t send someone your way and all that person does is lead you into sin or provoke lustful thoughts in you. God doesn’t tempt us with evil (James 1:13), so if you see a temptation coming you have to see the devil is feeding off of our sinful desires. 
Many of us just don’t take the bible seriously and that’s why the world is in such a corrupt state. Paul tells us in 2 Corinthians 6:14 to not be “equally yoked with unbelievers”. What does that mean? To be connected to one another to the point where you go where they go. They used to yoke animals together so they can plow in the same direction. It’s clear you’ll interact with nonbelievers, but that doesn’t mean to take it further to the point where you’re emotionally connected. So understand this, when you’re connected to someone you’re going where they are going for the most part. If you date an unsaved person, you’ll be heading towards sin more than they’ll be heading towards righteousness. Understand that many people make mistakes and date non believers and God can always save them, but we can’t use that as the rule. God’s word said not to connect to a nonbeliever because we can’t change them, only God can change them so it makes sense to find someone God has already saved rather than risk your walk with God in order to find companionship. 
“Can two walk together, except they be agreed?”
‭‭Amos‬ ‭3:3‬ ‭
3. Work on you.
Many people keep pursuing the “perfect one” for them, but are forgetting that person is also looking for someone of substance. We have to bring more to the table than our looks. 
I understand that everyone won’t have degrees or the highest paying jobs and that is perfectly fine, but have you learned how to do simple things like cook or clean? The time we spend single and pursuing everyone that interests us could also be spent investing into ourselves. 
Not having a brand new hairstyle or outfit every week isn’t what’s stopping you from finding God’s will. Sometimes we are stopping ourselves from a Christ centered relationship because we are seeking people rather than allowing Christ to direct us. 
4. Find your identity in Christ. 
The reason many don’t know their purpose in life is because they are seeking to find their worth in someone else. We can’t base our worth based on anything that we can lose. If you wait until someone else comes along to say that you are beautiful, you are appreciated or to compliment you, you forget to see that God already says that about us. God’s word says you are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalms 139:14). 
Start seeing yourself the way God sees you so you don’t need anyone else to fill a void in your life. Relationships are only to add to your life, God is the one who gives meaning to our lives. Colossians 2:10 says that we are complete in Christ. Stop trying to find someone else to do what Christ has already done.
“For my people have committed two evils; they have forsaken me the fountain of living waters, and hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no water.” Jeremiah‬ ‭2:13‬ ‭
5. Get over your ex!
Many are rushing into relationships in order to be restored from previous hurt. God wants to heal you and restore you back into Him when you fall short or have been heartbroken, it isn’t fair to expect a new person to fill that void. If you still hate your ex or want to get back with them, you shouldn’t pursue someone else.
You shouldn’t ever hate your ex, no matter what they did. If they hurt you, pray for God to save them and work on them. But always pray for God’s will, because it makes no sense for us to chase something that God doesn’t want us a part of. I wouldn’t want to restore a relationship that God isn’t glorified and He was the one who separated us for our protection. 
“I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.” Philippians‬ ‭3:14‬ ‭
Grace and peace,
Tovares Grey 

Quit Looking Around

The eye is a gateway to the soul. Meaning, what you watch and keep your eyes on is what you will eventually begin to desire. I wouldn’t want to have what he/she has if I never even seen what they had. The eye is powerful. We all see certain things, but what you look at will either lift you up or destroy you! Contradiction? No. To see something is simply to perceive it, to notice something that presents itself in front of you. To look at something is to set your gaze on it, you are intentionally directing your eyes in it’s direction.
David was a king, but kings were still called to go out to war with their troops. However, the bible says David tarried back in Jerusalem (STRIKE 1). David then went walking in the evening on the roof of his palace and saw Bathsheba showering, then he noticed that she was beautiful (STRIKE 2). David asked about the woman and he was told that she was married, but he still sent for her (STRIKE 3). Now let’s go over these three strikes and you tell me if this isn’t still an issue to address.
1. David was not in position!
When you aren’t where God wants you, you are exactly where the devil wants you! It doesn’t matter if you aren’t “in sin”, but as long as you don’t go where God sends you, you’re wrong. Jonah was sent to Nineveh and went to Tarshish, God had to send a storm and a whale to swallow him. You see, there is nothing good happening when we aren’t doing what the King says to do. Many of are way too “grown” that not even God can tell us what to do. We go where we want, when we want, dress how we want and only if it’s convenient for our schedule that day. Before God made any of us, He knew every step we will make. So even though God’s plan was for David to be out at war, David didn’t do it and ended up committing adultery, making a baby and having a man murdered. All of that just because he didn’t decide to go. I’m grateful for mercy, because God could’ve cut David, or you and I, off the many times we’ve done similar things.
2. David was looking where he shouldn’t be looking!
I cannot say I’ve been to David’s house, so I will not say David always had a view of women showering, but the bible does show that David was looking intently. Maybe there weren’t overhead showers as we see today, but regardless we know the woman was showering with some form of water and she was naked (common sense). You cannot see someone’s beauty when they are in/under water. At some point she’s washing her face and other areas, which means he had to stare for quite a bit to be captivated by her curves and how looks after he spotted her. So it wasn’t a sin that he saw a naked woman, it became a sin when he decided to stare and desire her (Matthew 5:28). We have to understand, we will see sinful things daily, but we have the power over what we stop and focus on. You can unfollow that account, you can leave that area, you can block that number. Staying shows interest. It’s not easy, but sin is so accessible that it’s like you run from one thing to the next. However, you must guard your eyes in order to protect the anointing inside of you. 
3. David was warned!
David knew she was married and still had men bring her to him. Many bash Bathsheba, as if it was her intention to shower in front of men. The fact remains that David was the king, she had no choice but to go to him or risk her life. If you would’ve ignored the guards and be killed, I respect you, but let’s not allow a sin issue to cause us to point fingers at her. Just like David, we are all warned before we commit sin. If you have the Holy Ghost, there is no way God will make you feel comfortable out of His will. He will bother your conscience. Stop ignoring warning signs and the obvious truth because of your emotions. God forgives, but that is no excuse to disobey. God forgives, but you will have consequences for your actions. “I’m sorry, God. It won’t happen again” doesn’t turn away an STD, pregnancy, bitter bf/gf, a ruined testimony and a soul you may never lead to Christ after, etc. Don’t ignore the signs because you’re lonely.
Many of us like to play the blame game. I wouldn’t lust if they were wearing more clothing, but you don’t have to look. You can see something wrong/lustful and turn your head, but to look for it, search it, follow it on social media, etc. is proving you have the issue that needs to be dealt with. Don’t let your eyes get hooked on the devils bait. What you look at will destroy you if it will distract you from God’s will. Lusting after someone? It isn’t that you have an issue, God gave us all sex drives and the desire to want someone. The problem rises when you let your desire for something godly come out in the wrong context. So now instead of desiring sex in marriage, you find yourself filling your heart and mind with sexual gratification out of His will (pornography, masturbation, sending/receiving lustful messages/pictures).
Understand this, the devil cannot make you do anything. The enemy will only offer you what you desire and its up to you to decide whether to obey him or God. If I like short, he won’t send tall because he knows I’ll ignore it. Be careful of the desires you have in your heart because if you keep feeding yourself garbage your life will eventually begin to produce that. David may not have had a “lust” issue prior to that, but because he was not where he should have been and started looking where he shouldn’t have been looking, he fell. The one man in the bible considered to be after God’s heart committed adultery and purposefully had her husband killed, you can fall as well. Samson could be considered arrogant or foolish, but he was called by God. Your calling doesn’t make you invincible, you have to learn to put your feelings aside in order to be who you were called to be. The strongest man on the earth fell into sexual sin, you can too. Solomon was considered the wisest man to ever live, and still couldn’t get enough women in his life. If he had more wisdom than anyone may ever have, what makes me think I can’t stumble and lose sight of God?
Unless you’re focused on Jesus, you will (not maybe) drift away spiritually. It is our nature to sin, we must intentionally set our eyes on Jesus. Choose today to stop following pornography via social media. Call it as it is. If they are half naked, you don’t need to feed your spirit with it. You may know them, but that doesn’t mean you should allow social media to cause you to forget what God’s Word says: be holy (1 Peter 1:16), flee youthful lusts (2 Timothy 2:22), or set your affections on things above (Colossians 3:2).
No, I don’t live a perfect life….but that will not be an excuse to abuse grace. Guard your spirit, don’t allow your eyes to be sidetracked by things of this world. Peter walked on water when he was looking at Jesus, but began to drown when he looked at the storm. So many are drowning in sin right now because they stopped looking at God and started looking for spouses. How can we find love without God who is Love? Turn back to Him, don’t be enticed by their looks or words. Who God has for you will do more than say the right words, they will be following His Word! Quit looking around, you will die out of God’s will aiming for something that can only be found in Him. 
I have set the Lord always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. (Psalms 16:8)


Why Get Married?

I’m really not shocked by today’s divorce rate, neither am I shocked that “believers” are getting divorced. Why? I think many forgot the purpose of this sacred union and what God expects of them in the marriage. You see, it’s easy to say what the other person is doing wrong, but difficult to see the chaos you’re causing or your role. It’s easy to expect them to deliver your every need, but it’s also unrealistic to think when you’re saying “I do” that it now means the same as “I own you”. So what exactly is the purpose of marriage?
Let’s go over 5 things of what marriage is for and what it isn’t about.
1. Marriage is for God’s glory. 
If you ever read your bible or simply attended a church service, you should be well aware that the Bible is about God’s love for us. It’s sort of a romance novel of God coming to rescue His bride through His death on a cross. The love shown by Jesus is what God actually calls men to. A sacrificial love, one that is willing to do anything for the well being of his wife and those he is leading (kids for example). Ladies, take this into consideration before wasting your time. He has to be a man who will place the will of God first in his life and be a man who places others before himself. Men, allow God to mold you into His image . Don’t rush the process. You grow while married, but don’t pursue a woman when you’re pursuing selfish ambitions rather than His kingdom. 
2. Marriage is supposed to show the world God’s love. 
There are many broken homes in the world today. Not only do they have no idea that there is a God who loves them, they barely have others surrounding them to show them the way things should be. Many have single parent homes because one person just doesn’t want to be there, which is why we need Christian homes to show what it means to have examples of unconditional love, forgiveness and how to grow with someone for the rest of your life, not until you get bored.
3. Marriage is for your benefit.
God saw Adam and said it wasn’t good for him to be alone so he made Eve to help him. Eve was created to support him, rule with him, and to make his life easier (Genesis 2:18). God was being considerate because Adam could’ve wondered why animals were reproducing and felt left out for not having someone. Marriage is to build together. I don’t see why many run away from it, when God brings the right person to you and you both focus on Him, that type of love can never die.
4. Marriage is a ministry.
God is entrusting someone’s heart into your hands and future children, He doesn’t want you to neglect this responsibility. Marriage is to be invested into. You have to communicate, pray, study the word, have fun and remain intimate. God wants the home to be an unbroken bond, you have to be intentional about keeping God at the center and not allowing the world to pollute the home.
5. Marriage is to be protected.
It’s sad, but many people do flirt with married people (and vice versa). They won’t respect your home if you don’t. If you give the devil access, he will take it. Be careful of your “friends” who will use God’s name to subtly creep in and violate what God put together. Your spouse must be your best friend. Friends of the opposite sex shouldn’t ever cross certain boundaries or be the ones to influence your home. The bible tells wives to submit to their own husbands (Ephesians 5:22). With all do respect, but your pastor or favorite speaker is not the one leading your home. Which is why a man must be connected to God, because he is supposed to guide you in the way that God is calling you all.
What isn’t marriage about?
1. Marriage is NOT about sex.
I agree with Paul, if you can’t contain sexual urges it’s best to get married (1 Corinthians 7:9). However, if you’re only in it for sex, that’s the wrong motive. God wants you to control your urges now, fornication only leads to adultery. Marriage doesn’t cure lust. We will continue to lust, watch porn, masturbate and fall into sin if we don’t submit our urges and feelings under the hand of God. Put your flesh under subjection, follow Jesus not hormones.
2. Marriage is not about what you can get. 
Love has never been and will never be about what you gain. Jesus died out of love knowing that many will never even believe in Him and some of the ones who do will always struggle listening to Him. Love is giving, even if it isn’t reciprocated. God wants you to love each other even when you’re annoying each other. Marriage is sharpening one another. A wise man once said the “God uses the rough edges of your spouse to sharpen you.”
3. Marriage is not about saving your spouse.
This is regarding those who are Christians and then dating unsaved people. You can’t save anyone, let God work on their heart before you start dating them. Both of my parents met unsaved and both came to Jesus, they’ve been married for 25 years so far. I know others who have had unsaved people approach them and they said “get Jesus first” and after that person genuinely went to Jesus, they eventually worked out and are still married and happy now. But my point is this, anyone can fake or just get baptized in order to get you. Don’t let emotions lead you, follow God.
4. Marriage is not about social media. 
You may think this is a joke, but some people only want relationships because others are in one. They don’t really care if God is glorified, they just want to post pictures on social media so others see their “happiness”. Public Service Announcement, if others need to validate your life, you’re not happy. We need to seek God’s approval for our life and not what others think.
5. Marriage is not a competition.
Stop competing with the person God placed in your life to assist you. Stop competing with other couples and stay in your lane. You will die in either envy or jealousy if you keep focusing on other couples, focus on what God has for you.
These are just a few things to keep in mind whether you want to get married or you are already married. Don’t go with the wrong motives, God doesn’t answer selfish prayers. Grace and peace.


Men Know EXACTLY What They Want!

Men know exactly what they want!… Pretty bold statement and unfortunately, most readers are probably already disagreeing with me. The fact of the matter is, a real man may be unsure of some things, but they are never indecisive. Here is proof that a real man knows exactly what they want.
1. Jesus, the perfect man for us males to emulate, was purpose driven. 
Since the day Jesus came on Earth, he had a mission in mind – to redeem us… To win back HIS BRIDE! Jesus received more opposition in a day than most of us will see in a lifetime. Jesus only had a few people in his inner circle, but his love was stretched out to all. True love is when you don’t quit when friends betray you and the ones you are trying to help turn away from you. Jesus showed us that the agony of the cross was worth enduring to get what he loved, us.
2. A real man doesn’t need several women to be satisfied. 
A real man finds his contentment in Christ so he will never seek several women to complete him. He doesn’t flirt around and he doesn’t entertain every random girl who throw themselves at him. He is chasing God, not skirts. He knows loving one woman is enough and he chooses a woman that helps him spiritually.
3. A real man makes his intentions clear. 
If you have to guess what his plans with you are, there are no plans. A man who wants to date you for years before marrying you isn’t interested in you he’s just afraid of being single and just wants someone there all the time. Does a godly man rush marriage? No, but he isn’t going to need 10 years to know if you’re for him because he spends his time with God. God would have let him know way ahead of time if he should pursue you. Ladies, a WCW post and occasional dates doesn’t mean he’s in love. Never allow yourself to give covenant benefits to a convenient person. Men don’t take advantage of women, he respects God too much to mistreat his daughter.
4. A real man doesn’t give mixed signals. His life produces fruit.
Wise men are careful of what they entertain. They don’t want to preach Christ and live a life of sin.He wouldn’t seek a virtuous woman while following immodest women on social media. He wouldn’t lead a woman on if he didn’t want her in the future. He struggles, but he doesn’t allow mistakes to define him. He allows God to mold him daily.
5. Real men work and wait for what they love.
Let’s be honest, we’ve seen guys wait in line for Jordan’s, video games, and other unimportant things like new iPhones. We all know men are patient for what interests them. Jacob waited 7 years for the woman he loved and then was tricked with her sister, and continued another 7 years for her. He wasn’t foolish. He was man enough to seek what he wanted. Don’t think today you have to rush anything, good things take time.
If you’re a man, strive to do these things more. Ultimately, you want to live more like Jesus. Seek him before you seek a woman. If you’re a woman reading this, don’t settle for less. No man is perfect, but don’t feel you have to compromise and lower standards to entertain childish boys when God is preparing a real man for you. Grace and peace.


The Man God is Preparing for Her

There is a process that every male must go through in life. Many boys never become men either because they allow people to control their lives or because they have never submitted to Christ and allowed him to mold them into the man He is preparing them to be. Men, you have to understand that you must go to God before a woman so He can process you. Ladies, you must understand that you cannot force a man to love you who isn’t ready, you will never be good enough.
1. Boys don’t know what they want.
Every boy has a desire to chase after something. However while immature, he will simply go after what looks and feels good not necessarily what is good for them. Which is why just like a parent, God has to teach him what to avoid and what is acceptable. Men, don’t rush this period. Allow God to develop you. Premature dating will lead to broken hearts or offering women what you can’t deliver.
2. Boys are emotionally driven, men are more focused.
Whenever a little boy doesn’t get His way, he’s either ready to fight, whine or shut down internally. That’s not the man God wants His daughters with. God has to work on him so he knows how to operate under pressure and how to lead a family without emotions clouding his judgment. Ladies, don’t spend time on a boy that has you being his second mother. If he can’t be calm and collected, he isn’t fit to lead you. Remember, love is patient and kind. An emotion driven man is the one who tends to abuse women when he can’t verbally express his thoughts or handle his emotions.
3. Men work for what they want, boys want handouts.
I don’t know how you feel about it, but seeing women in control and babying their man is a disgrace. Don’t get me wrong, ladies take care of your man, but no woman should be supporting a lazy man. Ladies shouldn’t have to be raising their husbands, she isn’t his mother. A real man may not have all the degrees in the world, but he knows how to provide, protect and pray for his family. Men, make sure you’re stable with God. A degree doesn’t sustain a relationship, but a connection to Christ will.
4. Good men are hard to find.
No woman should be pursuing a man. So if you think you found a good one, you did not. A real man understands it’s his role to lead in the pursuit. He doesn’t wait on a woman to come to him out of loneliness but he finds a woman with a heart for Christ and ambition that he can grow with.
5. Godly men are under attack.
If you’re paying attention, you can see that there are more women in church than men. And the men you do see in church are either being pressured into fornication, homosexuality, marriage before they’re ready, drugs, alcohol etc. Some of these influences come from within the church as well. You will never understand the struggles a man faces, they need prayer. Don’t say “there are no good men”, and not pray that God rises up men like David, Paul, Samuel, etc. Your prayer can be the breaking point of God saving someone’s husband, child, father. Men are falling, so many are comfortable in secret sins and honestly feel trapped. Prayer and accountability will bring them out.
There’s a process men must go through, pray that they submit to Jesus before trying to lead a woman or any type of ministry. Grace and peace.
– Tovares Grey

The Chase

This one is for the guys. I’m well aware that many guys are seeking relationships: some boys just want to have “fun”, but there are some men that are looking for commitment, so I had to write something about it to put some things into perspective concerning relationships.

When seeking a relationship, keep these things in mind:

1. God did not create you to be a player or a pimp.

Do not waste the young lady’s time or emotions with your games. If you want to commit, then do so. If you don’t, move on. It is not fair for any person to invest so much into you and a future they are expecting only to have you treat them as though they never mattered. A real man doesn’t make 100 different women fall in love with him, he commits to one and tries to find hundreds of ways to make her happy. God cannot be pleased with you treating his daughters like toys.

2. Seek her heart, not her body.

Guys, God wants you to pursue a virtuous woman, not chase skirts. Jacob is the perfect example for a man so in love that he was willing to wait seven years for her (Genesis 29:20).It felt like a few days because of how much he loved her. Even after being cheated by her father, he went through another seven-year period of waiting for the woman he desired. Until you two commit to one another at the altar, don’t combine your souls in bed. It just isn’t worth the emotional roller coaster to have your body connected to many different people.

3. Is she even virtuous?

Stop looking at curves, and look for a woman with a heart after God. It does not matter how nice they look, if their heart is not after Jesus than how can they build you up spiritually? Many women call themselves “Proverbs 31” women and many aim to be there, but did you know that not many live that lifestyle? Proverbs 31 does not mention a woman’s looks, it focuses on her heart and character. Be careful of getting a beautiful woman who is lukewarm, more concerned about her fashion and social networks instead of evangelizing to lost souls, or a woman who is lustful instead of spiritual. The person you marry will be raising your kids, are you sure you want your kids acting like them? It does not matter if she can twerk, turn you on or she attends church occasionally. The question to ask is does she love Jesus, is she a role model and can she wait until marriage so you two can remain pure in heart and body?

4. Singleness is not a disease.

It is okay to spend time being single so you can get your life into perspective. Your life does not begin on your wedding day, so live now! Quit waiting on someone to complete you because true satisfaction does not come from man, it comes from Jesus. Colossians 2:10 says, “And ye are complete in him (Jesus), which is the head of all principality and power:. We are complete in Jesus, don’t look for anyone to fill the void in your heart that can only be filled by Jesus. This season of singleness is what helps you become a better spouse. Get your life together now before burdening your spouse with unnecessary baggage later.


 Come on, do I even have to say this? Guys, God created you as a leader and provider, quit being comfortable having the woman do everything. It is okay if she makes more money than you, but the problem is when you are lazy or have no ambition, feeling comfortable that you don’t have anything to do. Study, work, learn, excel! Be an example to younger guys and to this economy. Let her know that even if you guys go through a slump or if you don’t have a job at the moment, that you will still spend your time finding ways to provide and lead whether financially, spiritually, and emotionally.

There is nothing wrong with being attracted to someone. It seems as though God wired us as men to be stimulated by sight, but it can turn chaotic if we go about it the wrong way. Your sex drive is normal, but can be uncontrollable if you feed your heart and mind with sinful things. Men are initiators, hunters, and even conquerors. What thrills men is the chase to get a woman, but sometimes that in turn hurts a woman because some men lose interest after they have won her heart and eventually get bored and want to move on to someone else. God said that it wasn’t good for a man to be alone so he made a woman to help him. However, I am well aware that not everyone is meant to be married, and sometimes God simply has a different purpose for them. That is fine, when single you can give more of your heart, time and resources to your purpose. Just know that whether you are chasing a relationship or not, remember to chase Jesus. Never stop following Jesus to be with anyone, whoever you end up with should help you grow spiritually. photo

– Tovares Grey