Debt Kills Intimacy

When a marriage is strapped with debt, I can almost bet you that the couple is having less intimacy, joy and sex.  Sex inside marriage takes energy.  Debt kills energy.

The old proverb, “the best things in life are free” is correct, but somehow our pride, and this culture, tells us we need more.  Bigger house-bigger payment.  Newer car-bigger payment. More toys-bigger payment. Private education-bigger payment. I am not saying that any of these in and of themselves is a bad thing, even God said in John 10:10 “…that he came that we might have life to the full”, but I don’t think he meant full of things.   If you are spending more than you earn, then you are beginning the process of setting a noose for your marriage.

Debt and finances are consistently ranked 1, 2, or 3 at the top of reasons for divorce and divorce first hurts you, then it hurts your kids. What we really want and need is not anything more, bigger, newer, more exclusive, more expensive.  What we need is a fun, lively, honest, secure, laughter-filled relationship.

What your kids need is not newer shoes or the latest gadget.  They need mom and dad enjoying each other, not stressed to the max with debt.

I know this falls into that category of easy to say and hard to live, but don’t most things that make life worth living fall into that category?

So, pray and do what it takes to get out of debt.  I guarantee you the ‘intimacy’ will be better and more often.

God is with You.

By |January 26th, 2010|Hub Thots, Song of Solomon, Tuesday's with Doug|0 Comments

Haiti, How Can I Help?

Words don’t express the pain that humans, created by God, are experiencing in Haiti. And, now a second earthquake. I am not angry at God, but I can’t say I understand these times either. Some people say, Jesus, come back now.

I think yes, but then I think of those who don’t know Him yet, and as Tommy Nelson once said, “Aren’t all Christians grateful that Christ did not come back the day before we were saved?”

It is hard to comprehend all of this tragedy. Mark Driscoll travels there and witnesses a teenage boy being shot and killed. My 13 year old daughter is trying to process all this at dinner time last night and she cried for people she has never met. “God, I believe, help my unbelief” is what Christ said through the Apostle Paul.

So, this begs the response, what should I do? What can you do? Generally it comes down to a few basic things:

  • Pray.
  • Go.
  • Give money.

At The Hub, 20% of all online sales through February 1, 2010 will be donated to Haiti.  All monies will be donated to To whom much is given, much is required.

God is with Haiti, and their people, even when we don’t understand.

Doug Hudson

By |January 20th, 2010|Mark Driscoll, Tuesday's with Doug, Weekly Devos|0 Comments

Romance, Relationships & Religion

Guess what? These 3 words are in the top 50 of all internet topics being blogged about, searched for on Google, Youtube, podcast, and any other traditional or new communication method.

My question for you is simple. Why? Why do we have more access to information than we have ever had before and yet the core issues, Romance and Relationships, Religion, Politics and Money?

Are you content with how much money you have/make?  Was your childhood with religion a positive or negative thing?  Did you judge others in your home or did you feel judged?  Was your home a happy place with a mom and dad who had a good, healthy, kind relationship and therefore home?  Or was your home icey cold, volatile hot, or just empty?

Ever wondered why these issues get our blood boiling and minds moving?  It’s quite simple.  God!

He created us with the desire and capacity to share, experience and enjoy romantic relationships.  He created the desire within man/woman to create, work, design, build, grow and therefore earn a way to provide for ourselves and family units.  He created us in His Image and therefore to have freedom, responsibility, community, and safety.

So, it is God who has created and given us the desire and need for Romance, Relationships and Religion (I will define this as the need for a personal relationship with God, everyone’s Creator).

Am I saying it is as simple as belief in God will solve all Romance, Relationship and Religious issues?  No.  I am saying that trust and belief in The One who made us is the source to find fulfillment in all these areas and the source of strength and courage to work through our differences.

These issues will always been in the TOP 10 of internet, magazine, newspaper, blogs, or whatever form of communication our God given minds will create.  Because, until we stop searching the internet, magazines, newspapers, blogs, or whatever form of information our God given minds develop and start searching His Written Word, The Bible and pray for His best in the areas of Romance, Relationships and Religion, there will always be turmoil in our lives and therefore our world.

God is with us – thank goodness.  Happy New Year from The Hub.

By |December 30th, 2009|Hub Thots, Tuesday's with Doug|0 Comments

God is with Matt Chandler

Friends, we have been praying for Matt Chandler, friend of The Hub and Pastor of The Village Church in Dallas, TX. The pathology report is back and the tumor was malignant and they were not able to remove it all. For a full report from The Village, go here.

This is very difficult. For Matt, Lauren, their kids, family and for The Village. Not in my life have I seen God raise up so much love for a preacher in such a short time than I have with Matt.

It is a must that we bend our knees, hearts and minds and look only at Jesus. This does not and will not make sense to our human mind. We are not able to comprehend this kind of pain and suffering.

Do we bend our knees, hearts and mind with hope? Absolutely! As Paul says in Romans, we do not grieve as those without hope.

Matt, family, and The Village, those of us who have been blessed by God using you and His gifts He gave you to teach, we commit to pray for you all.

We will pray for physical healing. We will pray for Christ to be made known around the world so that many others will experience spiritual and eternal healing through this struggle.

It is not our way, but God’s ways are trustworthy, for He is the only true Trustworthy one.

God is with you, and us.

By |December 16th, 2009|Hub Thots, Matt Chandler, Tuesday's with Doug|2 Comments

Who's on First?

In response to Caryn’s question: Caryn and her husband just had their first child and are now struggling with connecting physically, emotionally and spiritually. Her final comment/question is: Is it possible to still be madly in love with your spouse and enjoy being parents?

Caryn, YES! Guess what’s next…WORK.

First things first. I think you need to slow down a bit, step back and let some things simmer down. I have not given birth (surprise) but my wife Carrie has three times. It is wonderful and can be very stressful. Hormones, no sleep, new things, things you don’t know how to work, no sleep, new financial opportunities:), who is going to wake up at 2:45 a.m., no sleep, hormones. A lot of Change!

There is also a ton of sweet sounds, holding a baby on your chest and taking a nap, watching them sleep, letting their little finger wrap around yours, watching their eyes open, emotionally and spiritually connecting with them, taking a nap with your baby on your chest (I know I already said that, but since I said no sleep a lot in the other paragraph, need to say how sweet those naps are).  A lot of Goodness.

Caryn, and others, during this time of wonderful, but massive change, we need not to become anxious, paranoid, or rush to judgments about one another. Certainly you and your husband are realizing that if you thought marriage took sacrifice, having a baby is like the ultimate mirror to reflect our selfishness.

“I am tired and I have to get sleep or I can’t do my job at work well.” “Well, I just gave birth to your son (daughter) and I have not slept for days and have this precious little one on my side 24/7 and I need help.”  Was it Mark Twain (not sure) that said, ‘this is why God gives children to the young.'”

I would suggest you and your husband find a few quiet minutes and share your honest, heartfelt feelings. Share with him your concern over your body and its changes. Share with him your sense of missing him, your tiredness and energy.  Share with him the sense of loss of losing your best friend and the separation you are feeling.  Share with him your desire for him and to not lose that intimacy and your willingness to fight for him.

For the husbands out there, intimacy will return. But, this is why it is called intimacy in marriage and not sex, because it requires courage, honesty, sacrifice, commitment. Then, when you each get a bit of rest, you have unselfishly helped each with the responsibilities in the home, and then you come together in intimacy, now you have something worth fighting for! Now that is two souls coming together, and not two bodies.

Caryn, pray for the conversation, offer the results to God (your husband may not respond perfectly to the first conversation) but be kind and wise about your timing, but be direct and courageous.

This is one of the forks in the road where as things get more complicated in marriage, we must fight diligently to “keep falling in love” with the best friend that we chose and God lead us to.

God is with you, be strong!

By |December 15th, 2009|Hub Thots, Tuesday's with Doug|0 Comments

The Kids & Re-Marriage

For a first week of questions you guys really did not waste any time. Of course, when we are experiencing pain, time is of the essence, right!

In thinking about which direction to go in my response, I tried to think about one of the issues brought up that may affect the most people. I just spent some time with family over the Thanksgiving holiday, as I am sure many of you did, which of course is a whole other topic, right? So who is going to give me counsel on that one?

But, here is a point that I know so many people deal with. I am not going to focus on the biblical/theological issues dealing with re-marriage. That is a very lengthy conversation and one that has much disagreement within the Christian church. In fact, if you ask most pastors, they will be hard pressed to put their true beliefs on paper, and many of them will tell you it is not the issue of divorce that is difficult, it is the issue of re-marriage.

But I digress. 🙂 The issue for this response is dealing with the kids from previous marriages. This is extremely difficult whether the kids are young, or if the kids are grown.

I think my primary principle is two-fold. When you choose to re-marry, you have a new husband/wife. The principle in Genesis is that a man should leave his mother and father and the two shall become one flesh. Marriage is a new union of two becoming one. This is why the issue of re-marriage is so difficult, and in my belief another in a very long line of reasons why God intended and designed for one marriage, one husband and one wife. However, even in the issue of the death of a spouse where there is no theological problem related to ‘is it okay to remarry’, the issue of the kids is still very much an issue.

First principle: If God called you into a marriage, then you need to be committed to God first, then to your spouse, then to your family. Now, I know this is very difficult. But, each person did decide to get married, and with that comes ‘opportunities’ to be faithful to God and our commitment. The real issue in many folks situation is that the person we choose to re marry is not submitting themselves to God and therefore they can cause more problems than they should. These are signs that we should look for diligently prior to getting married or re-married.

You will continue to hear me say over and over again, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.  But, of course God’s forgiveness is for all of us because we all need the greatest ‘Cure’ of all time, Him.  So, any husband or wife dealing with a difficult spouse on any issue, pray diligently for them.

In another blog we posted, Mark Driscoll makes the statement to ‘invite’ your spouse, don’t nag your spouse.  I suggest mustering the most patient, kind and courageous attitude, after much prayer, and trying to get an honest dialogue going with your spouse about how you really feel.  Not emotional, no ‘angry words’ or ‘tones’, but an honest, calm discussion.  No ultimatums, no expectations of immediate relief or change, but an honest dialogue that allows room for God to change both you and your spouse’s heart.

Much of the angst that fills our heart and mind on these issues is that “I just wish I could fix it right away,” it is the sense of being out of control.  Well, guess what, we are not in control of anyone, other than ourselves, and the only control we have is to submit to God and live one day at a time.

My second principle is your kids are your kids.  It is always a delicate balance and one that takes much time, self-control, brave communication and trust to guide us through this journey.  Again, the issues of dealing with the kids in any situation, re-marriage, grandkids, are very present and real.

The balance from kids becoming their own families and the right level of involvement are things that must be worked out together and over time, and they will change over time.  Of course in all of our families, we all have dysfunction.  Humans are dysfunctional.  Our goal should be each day by God’s grace and power, to be brave and continue our own personal growth and asking the Lord to lead us to make better decisions and leave the results to Him.

So, for all of us and our families, let’s make a start today to: Get quiet and Pray, be brave and to have calm and honest discussions, and leave results to God.  Some of you have tried this, others have not, but again, we all have to live with decisions we have made and trust an all loving and powerful God to work first in our lives, and then in our spouse or kids or grandkids.

Most importantly, God is with you.

To view all of the posts on the Conflict Series, click here.

Tuesday's with Doug – Conflict Denied

Starting this week we are going to start responding to your comments and questions on our most recent devotional. The most recent was Conflict Denied and if you missed it or the comments, check it out here.

From Doug Hudson…

Let me first say to Mardy, wow, thanks much for the kind words. Are you sure it was me you were referring to? Your Christmas gift is in the mail:))

But, I also wanted to thank everyone for the great discussion about conflict. One topic that came up yesterday over coffee with a friend about this exact subject. He asked, ‘how do I handle when I have been offended by my wife.’ A very legit and good question.

My repsonse may be not what you are expecting. There are times when we are legitmately offended by our spouse. But, as believers that should be pretty rare in our marriage.

What I see most often, is one of the spouses being too defensive. I first see this mostly in men. You know that fragile male ego joke we have all heard about…well unfortunately I think it is kind of true:(

Many times what we need is a good dose of laughing at ourselves and not taking ourselves too seriously. Many conflicts stem from ‘I feel offended’ so then I react like that and then we spiral into a good ole fashion fight where things are said and hurtful things are brought back up.

So, of course there is real offense. In these cases, approach with kindness, respect but get to the point quickly and concisely. Be direct and kind about each other’s feelings.

But, too many of us, yeah, unfortunately, me included, I just need to relax a bit, laugh at myself when being teased, and not take myself so seriously.

Life is short, God is good, and there is much to do and enjoy for Christ’s sake.

God is with you.

By |November 24th, 2009|Hub Thots, Tuesday's with Doug|1 Comment