Name Changing – Game Changing?

I am out of sorts. I am sure we are all out of sorts these days.

I was streaming music and Springsteen’s Dancing in the Dark started playing. That entire song describes me at this moment.

Man, I’m just tired and bored with myself….

…..I wanna change my clothes, my hair, my face…..

Well, I already did some changing. Lost weight while working from home during the stay at home mandate, so I need new clothes. Definitely changed my hair. The face – nothing I can do about that except doll it up with some of my Avon. I’m good with that.

But next I am going with a name change. Heading back to the maiden name. Been thinking about this for a long, long time. COVID had me postpone this, but I am ready to see if the courts are open to schedule this. This is in no way me trying to erase almost 37 years of marriage. It’s just time. I have had a year to reflect back on my marriage. It wasn’t all bad – we had some great times and had two beautiful children. But it could have been better – better if we had been Biblical centered in our decision to marry.

My mom taught me to be independent, to always have my own job in order to have my own money, in order to take care of myself if need be. My mom was a child of divorce in the 1920s. Her dad was a womanizer, and left my grandmother with 3 children (one was a sickly infant son). My grandmother had to pack up a bag, leaving their family home with only what she and her two young daughters could carry. They had to walk miles to my great grandfather’s home, asking him for shelter. Great Grandfather Duples was a stern man. He took them in, but to my mother, this was not a loving home. My grandmother’s next husband was an alcoholic. He was a good man, but a heavy drinker. His brother, also an alcoholic, touched my mother inappropriately. When she spoke public of this injustice, she was slapped in the face, told to be quiet and not say such things about an adult. These men totally shaped my mother’s opinion of men.

Because of this independence, I watched her and my dad butt heads over the years. I did the same with my husband. Looking back now, I realize neither one of us trusted our husbands enough to be decision makers.

And that is sad.

Love, honor and obey. Obey. That word did me in and had chills running up my spine. Had I really known the Bible back then, I would have realized there was more to the story. God’s design for marriage is beautiful. When both parties are Christ-Centered, the wife is confident in her husband’s lead, and the husband leads with a pure heart. He is never to lead as a tyrant, or her superior. The husband should include her in important decisions and be respectful of her considerations. A Christ-Centered husband would not misuse his leadership.

Being as independent as I am, I just think this takes a lot of trust on the woman’s part. However, I see this can be successfully done. My daughter’s marriage is truly Biblical based and for that I am so thankful. They serve each other beautifully and focus on each other’s strengths. Lord knows she didn’t get that from her Momma, or her Momma’s Momma.

The best advice I can give for marriage is straight from Ephesians 5:33. “However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.” Men and women are wired differently. Women crave love, men crave respect.

Women, if you do not give your husband respect, he will not show you the love. Men, if you do not show your wife the love, she will not give you the respect you crave. This is a cycle that must be followed for a successful marriage.

If you are having trouble in your marriage, I cannot urge you enough to get Biblical counseling and jump into this love/respect cycle with gusto. BUT, you must trust each other completely. You should both pray together for the sanctity and success of your marriage.

So this discombobulated way brings me back to my name change. I was raised independent, so on this Independence Day, I am putting into motion going back to my maiden name. I cannot change the past, but only can learn from it.

Marriage is not for everyone, and at this moment, I do not think I can ever be successful in this endeavor. But all in God’s plan.

As for the present, I am going to live my best life possible and thank God for every moment.

You sit around getting older
There’s a joke here somewhere and it’s on me
I’ll shake this world off my shoulders
Come on, baby, the laugh’s on me

You can’t start a fire
Sitting ’round crying over a broken heart

This gun’s for hire
Even if we’re just dancing in the dark

You can’t start a fire
Worrying about your little world falling apart

I’m starting my fire by taking the name back I was born with.

(Just a note to my U.S. readers – I am finding healing in giving back.  My side job – my Avon business – is helping me do that.  My daughter, and youth minister son-in-law, have a personal ministry of reaching out to college students in their home town. Pre-Quarantine, they would bring the college students into their home on Monday nights to break bread, play games and speak the gospel.  They have since then had to find other ways to minister to these young men and women.  I am tithing my online order proceeds to their ministry.  Every little bit helps.  Would you please check out my website?  If this is your first time ordering Avon online, use code WELCOME10 for 10% off any size order.  Your products will be delivered directly to your door.  Some of the college students are foreign exchange students.  From a hand built table in southern Mississippi, the gospel is managing to be spread around the world.  Would you shop from my online store and have a part in spreading God’s word?)