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Lakeside Sweethearts Book Cover Reveal

Last Wednesday I opened my computer after work and received a sweet surprise: the cover for my third Love Inspired book that releases in June–Lakeside Sweethearts. 

Lakeside Sweethearts Book Cover

 Copyright © 2013 by Harlequin Enterprises Limited Cover Art used by arrangement with Harlequin Enterprises Limited ® and ™are trademarks owned by Harlequin Enterprises Limited or its affiliated companies, used under license.

I’m so thrilled they chose a dock for the cover art because it’s where Agnes and Ian spend a lot of time building their relationship. Plus, the lanterns and sunset create a romantic atmosphere. I absolutely love this cover. I hope you do too…and Agnes & Ian’s story. 

Your Turn: What elements do you like to see on book covers?

Lisa Jordan
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A Pretty Penny: My Life Has Gone to the Dog

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Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole.

Roger Caras 

Last August our family experienced another change in our lives–our youngest went off to college, leaving Hubby and me with an empty nest.

By day, our house is filled with noise and chaos because I own and operate a family childcare program.

Once that last Little Darling leaves for the day, and dinner is over, I sit in my comfy chair in the living room to pick up where I left off with my current WIP (work-in-progress). With only Hubby and me at home, I’ve noticed something very annoying…the ticking clock hanging on the living room wall.

Holy cats, that thing is loud!

When our boys are home, and the Xbox is being played, then the ticking is drowned out by whatever gaming chatter. 

Then I realized something else…I missed having someone to care for. Hubby doesn’t count because he’s quite self-sufficient, and my Little Darlings don’t count because they leave before dinner. 

I needed someone or something to take care of, so I started talking to Hubby about a dog. 

We had a beautiful yellow Lab about 14 years ago named Samantha Jane. Due to our son’s allergies at the time, and Samantha’s size with my Little Darlings, she wasn’t the best fit for our family. She ended up moving to a farm to live with a couple who had another dog and wanted a playmate for her. 

Anyway, Hubby wasn’t too excited about the dog thing and suggested we wait until spring.

For her birthday, my mom adopted a sweet little chihuahua mix dog named Penelope, who may be older than the 3 years the shelter claimed. This little sweetheart burrowed herself into my heart, especially after I became Penny’s official dogsitter when my mom was hospitalized two different times for heart issues. I kept telling Mom I was going to dognap Penny for good. 

In fact Hubby had said, “If only we could find a dog like Penny…”

I had been praying and asking God to provide us with the right pooch at the right time. 

Well, in January, my mom had another heart issue. Due to some concerns afterward, Penny came to live with us full-time. 

So as Carolyn mentioned on Monday when she took over my blog–I’m a new puppy mama. Isn’t Penny just the sweetest thing?

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Caring for a dog is like caring for kids, except dogs can’t speak, and kids shouldn’t be doing their business outside. Penny demands attention like a kid and insists on getting up in the middle of the night for a potty break. 

I’m remembering those early years with my kids. Unfortunately my body has aged 20 years, so I’m more tired now, but we love Penny so much and wouldn’t give her up for anything. 

Your Turn: Do you have any pets? What’s your favorite part about being a pet owner? What advice do you have to share with this new puppy mama? 

 

Lisa Jordan
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Blog Takeover: Writing About Life

C_avatarHi there!

I’m Carolyn, a friend of Lisa’s, and I’m here as a self-invited guest blogger.

Lisa and I spend a lot of virtual time together. We discuss almost everything. How tired we are. How cold our feet have been this winter. How much I want to eat cookies and cupcakes. How much she loves to watch NCIS. We lift each other up. We complain to each other. We celebrate together.

For a few weeks we’ve been discussing blogging (amidst the cupcakes and the weather gripes). I recently had a blog makeover and upgraded my space. That motivation along with a few snow days that popped up during January and I think I’ve got my blog clicking along nicely. I scheduled a few posts, had ideas for a few more, and generally enjoy writing. I like blogging. In my line of work as a librarian I like to think that someone is reading it and getting at least one small idea from what I have to share.

On the other hand (as I confess for Lisa), her blog is not something she really enjoys. She likes the blog, but doesn’t love doing the actual blogging. Occasionally she has a post she mentions that she enjoys writing, but that hasn’t happened recently. When I ask her what she blogs about she says, “love and marriage.”

Oh boy.

It’s not that I object to love and marriage!

But when Lisa and I talk most days we discuss other things she is interested in. Did you know Lisa is a scrapbooker? That she’s knitted something for just about everyone she knows? I don’t know how she keeps up with her crafty nature along with her day job and her writing job.

And recently Lisa has a new puppy!! Which she is going to post a picture of right here…

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See! Precious! Penny is adorable and Lisa is like any new puppy-mamma and has news to share!

I read a lot of blogs and Twitter and what I love about blogs is when the genuine nature of a person comes through. I don’t read a large quantity of author blogs, but I read a few. My favorite author blogger writes some about writing when it is a thought she has to share that she is passionate about. She also blogs dialogue her toddler twin nieces are saying when they are being silly, and shares about her experiences while taking trapeze lessons! What I love about my favorite authors on Twitter is when they post about their obsessions with bacon or how they’re surviving this chilly snowy winter and aren’t sure they can be around their school-aged kids one snow-day longer!

I don’t follow because they are writing about the same things their books are about. Maybe I’m the only one…but I doubt it.

I follow authors on blogs and Twitter because they are authentic about sharing whatever real moments in their lives they feel comfortable sharing in ‘public.’

I think Lisa has felt like her blog space here is an obligation as a writer. That she’s required to share wisdom and experiences directly related to writing or to her writing focus which is love and marriage.

Except…as writers the things we do outside of writing influence our writing the most. Otherwise writers would all be writing about writing. But instead writers are writing about life. About the little things that come together to make life exciting and meaningful. I’ve challenged Lisa to keep her blog updated but to avoid the pressure of writing about the same things she writes about professionally. Instead I want Lisa to have more fun writing about the little things that make life meaningful.

Like puppies!

Cheers!
Carolyn

Lisa here: Umm, so my blog was taken over by one of my all-time favorite people on the planet. Carolyn and I met online over 12 years ago when we bonded over a mutual interest. She read my first novel when it was still in the newbie writer stage…and we’re still friends. Man, that was some awful writing. 

In most realms Carolyn is an elementary school librarian who blogs at www.Risking-Failure.com and tweets at @carolynvibbert. But that’s all just an act because the real Carolyn reads a lot of YA lit, fluffy romance, and Christian fiction. She also whines about cold feet in the winter, and eats too many cookies no matter the season.

Your Turn: What are your favorite things to do, other than anything book related?

Lisa Jordan
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Why Marriage Matters: Embracing New Seasons as Couples

Embrace this new seasonThis week is going to be an emotional, yet exciting week for our family. Our youngest leaves on Thursday for college, which pushes Hubby and me into a new season of life—empty nesters.

After we came home from school shopping last Saturday, I posted a comment on Facebook stating I wasn’t ready for Thursday to come, and I asked my Facebook friends if the empty nesters had any advice to share.

I loved reading through all of the comments, which suggested tissues, enjoy it while we can since kids seem to come back home, etc, but one comment by my Ponderer sister Jennifer Annderson really struck my heart. She said,

“Embrace this new season to date your husband,

take on new challenges and focus some time on yourself.

Give the time and energy you so easily give to others

on your hubby and yourself.”

When Hubby and I started dating over 25 years ago, we had an unusual courtship. He was stationed 6 hours from me, so our relationship blossomed through letters, phone calls and weekend visits. We learned to make the most of the time we had together. Then after we got married and started a family, our couple time was pretty non-existent as we juggled family, work, church, school activities, etc.

Now that both of our boys will be in college, our evenings will be very quiet. So much of our relationship has been centered on our boys and their needs.

Now it’s our time.

Our time to reconnect.

Our time to rediscover the passion for one another that brought us together in the first place.

Our time for ourselves.

As I put on makeup before church on Sunday, I had to dry my eyes several times in order to apply mascara. I kept thinking it was the last worship service with my son before he left for college.

As a mom, I highlighted many firsts during my boys’ developing years. But as new “firsts” emerge, my mama’s heart wants to cling to some of those “lasts.”

My son has been in church since he was a young toddler. Sunday morning, I had a discussion with God as I unburdened my aching heart. God cradled me and reminded me He had to let his Son go too, so He understood my pain. But, He also reminded me our son has a rooted faith, and he wouldn’t be along as he embarked on this new adventure in his life.

I breathed in the knowledge that God’s got this. God understands my struggle to let go and let my boys live their lives, but He reminds me He has a plan and purpose for their lives. I need to allow Him to do a good work in them.

And He also reminded me of Jennifer’s words of wisdom to embrace our new season to date each other, to take on new challenges and to give the time and energy we poured into others and pour it back into our marriage. After all, God’s got that too.

 

Lisa Jordan
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Pedaling With Purpose: Fulfilling My Dreams

All Packed upIn a week or so, I’ll leave behind friends and all that is familiar and take to the open road on a mission. I’ll be leaving on a solo self-contained bicycle tour from Appalacia to the west coast in Oregon or Washington. 

I recently published my new e-book, Facing Fear and Finding Freedom. While writing that book, I was reminded about fear and how it can prevent a person from not only living their dreams, but even simple daily tasks.

I’ve always wanted to ride my bicycle cross country so I decided to combine the two. I decided to pedal with purpose. I’ll be departing this week or next (depending on some final logistics), and will set out on a journey of thousands of miles. Alone.

Why I’m Doing This

I could say I don’t need a reason other than wanting to pedal across America but that would not be entirely true. In 1984 I was abducted from a parking lot in broad daylight from a drug crazed criminal. He’d just gotten out of jail the day before.

Though I survived the attack and broken bones healed, I suffered from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Fortunately, I had a great medical/mental health team that helped me overcome.

Unfortunately, there are so many women who suffer in silence. PTSD holds them prisoners in their own homes. If they do venture out, serious anxiety and panic occur. I want them to know they can overcome PTSD. They can live a life free from the torture that comes from endless fear.

So, I will take to the open roads, completely on my own. I will be at the mercy and good graces of complete strangers I meet along the way. I will blog about my experiences and will write a book as I travel.

My hope is that women who survived violent assault but still suffer from PTSD will muster the courage to seek help and will take back the part of their lives that was lost when they were  violently assaulted.

Facing-Fear-Cover-FINAL-6-9-13How You Can Go With Me

Don’t worry, I won’t ask you to load up a bicycle and pedal by my side. But, there are things you can do to take the trip with me:

  • Pray, not only for me, but for all those women who suffer from PTSD.
  • Have me as a guest on your blog. I would be honored and it would really help get the word out.

I know the trip won’t be easy but even pedaling over mountains with forty pounds of gear is easier than summiting the mountain of fear from PTSD. I have the easy job. 

Thank you for your support as I pedal with purpose!

~*~

Reba J. Hoffman is a natural encourager, who has dedicated her life to others and finds no greater fulfillment than to watch those she coaches to succeed. She lives a simple life by design and shows others how to as well. She found her true north and does everything within her power to not only stay there, but to help others discover the way to their own true north. Learn more about her at www.rebajhoffman.com. 

~*~

Your Turn: How are you fulfilling your dreams? 

Lisa Jordan
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Do You Believe in Marital Magic?

laughingBeth1 2012

My friend Beth K. Vogt wears joy and encouragement like a form-fitting silk dress. She embodies passion for Jesus, her family and her career. After reading her sophomore novel, Catch a Falling Star, I thanked God for her talent and praised Him for the way He’s going to be using Beth to minister to others through her words. Catch a Falling Star is a beautiful story that made me laugh, cry and stay up past my bedtime. Even when life doesn’t go the way we plan, God’s plans are always perfect.

Beth K. Vogt believes God’s best is often behind the doors marked “Never.” After being a nonfiction writer and editor who said she’d never write fiction, Beth’s second inspirational contemporary romance novel, Catch a Falling Star, released May 7, 2013 from Howard Books. Beth is also the Skills Coach for My Book Therapy (MBT), best-selling author Susan May Warren’s writing community. Connect with Beth at bethvogt.com.

~*~

I love fairy tales – the classic ones like Rapunzel and Sleeping Beauty, and the modern day ones like Rachel Hauck’s Once Upon a Prince and Sandra Bricker’s If the Shoe Fits.

In my just-released novel, Catch a Falling Star, the heroine grew up listening to her grandmother read fairy tales to her. Those romantic stories shaped her dreams for romance and happily-ever-after.

And yet, one of the reasons I write inspirational contemporary romance is because I believe there is more to romance than the fairy tales tell us. After all, fairy tales have magic … and fairy godmothers … and impossibly beautiful women who sing and talk to forest animals … and incredibly handsome men (usually princes) who fall in love at first sight and drop everything to rescue the fairest of fair maidens …

I don’t know about you, but on my romantic journey, no fairy godmother showed up to re-do my wardrobe. There was no magic wand waving … no musical soundtrack playing in the background and no talking animals. (I admit talking animals would have freaked me out.) And one other thing was missing: The story didn’t end at the “found my true love” kiss.

I fell in love with a real person who – guess what? – also fell in love with a real person. Translate “real person” as “imperfect.” We promised to love one another “for better and for worse,” never imagining how bad “worse” could get. Miscommunication? Not us. Disagreements about finances? Nah. In-law strife? Nope. A season in our marriage where the only thing holding us together was the covenant we made with God and with our children where we promised there would never be a divorce? Never.

Wrong.

Wrong.

Wrong

And wrong.

It was during the times our marriage struggled the worst that I was most thankful that I’m not in a fairy tale marriage. I live in the real world – but even more importantly, I believe in a real God who cares about my husband, my children, and me. I don’t have to wait around for a fairy godmother because God is with me all the time. I don’t have to wait on the wave of a magic wand because I can lean into prayer and the truth of God’s word. I don’t have to hide my imperfections because God offers me grace, not judgment.

As a young girl, I read fairy tales because they promised me something more. The funny thing is, I found the “more” I was looking for in my real-world romance. I stood in the “wide open space of God’s grace” – with all my imperfections, doubts and fears – and discovered unconditional love. Not magic. Acceptance. Not a fairy godmother. A heavenly father who says I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Not a handsome prince. But an oh-so-handsome husband who loves me, day in and day out – happily ever after or not.

~*~

Catch-a-Falling-Star-bookcoverWhat does a girl do when life doesn’t go according to her plan? At thirty-six, Kendall Haynes has seen some of her dreams come true. She’s a family physician helping kids with severe allergies and asthma achieve more fulfilling lives—a childhood struggle she knows all too well. But are Kendall’s dreams of having it all—a career, a husband, children—nothing more than a childhood fantasy? God says He knows the plans He has for her—why can’t Kendall figure them out and be content with her life?

Griffin Walker prefers flying solo—both as an Air Force pilot and in his personal life. But a wrong choice and health problems pulled him out of the cockpit. His attempts to get out of “flying a desk” are complicated by his parents’ death—making Griffin the reluctant guardian of his sixteen-year-old brother, Ian. How did his life get so off course? Can he get his life back on track…or has there been a divine plan all along?

Catch a Falling Star reminds readers that romance isn’t just for twenty-somethings and that sometimes letting go of your “wish I may, wish I might” dreams is the only way to embrace everything God has waiting for you.

Your Turn: What was your favorite fairy tale as a child? How has your perception of fairy tales helped you define romance today? I’m giving away a copy of Beth’s Catch a Falling Star to one commenter (U.S. residents only). 

 

Lisa Jordan
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Meant to Be

Sherry Kyle author photoPlease welcome my friend and fellow Bookie, Sherry Kyle! Her second novel, The Heart Stone, released April 1 from Abingdon Press. 

Sherry graduated from Biola University with a degree in Communications and a minor in Bible. She is the author of three books:The Christian Girl’s Guide to Style, a book for ‘tween’ girls about beauty, fashion, and character; Delivered with Love, contemporary Christian women’s fiction; and her latest contemporary release, The Heart Stone

Sherry and her husband live along the coast of central California. They have four children, three biological and one by adoption. To learn more about her, visit her at www.sherrykyle.com

~*~

I never thought I’d be the type of girl to steal a guy from someone, but that is exactly what I did. Not intentionally, of course.

One week into my freshman year of college, a cute blond surfer asked me out on a date.  I said “yes” before I really thought through what my answer would mean for me—and the girl across the hall, who had pointed him out all week as the guy she really, REALLY liked. Yes, I was in trouble!

What made the situation more awkward was that she was my R.A. (resident assistant) and had the power to turn all the girls on our floor against me.

The night before the date, I lay in bed contemplating my options. I could sneak out and hide the fact that I was spending time with her crush, which would be difficult at a relatively small Christian college, or I could come clean and tell her.

I knocked on her door close to midnight. When she opened it, the truth of what I was going to say hit me. I was a guy stealer. My stomach clenched. It smacked me harder when I saw the small picture frame on her desk with their pictures. UGH! This was going to be tough.

Surprisingly, she took the news well, even saying, “ You can go. He always did like blondes better.” She was a cute redhead. I think what helped her reaction was that I offered to back out of the date, and told her our friendship meant more to me than some guy I didn’t know. It was the truth.

That was September 1984. Doug and I have now been married close to twenty-five years. We were meant to be.

I’m glad my R.A. was so sweet about it, but there was another girl on our floor who didn’t take the news very well. But that’s another story…

Sherry_ Doug Oct. 1984

                Sherry_ Doug Sept 2012

                 

 

 

 

 

 Your Turn: What is your romance story? Did you steal someone’s guy? 

~*~

 

Sherry Kyle The Heart Stone book coverTwo women. Two journeys. A season that may change their lives forever. 

When the alcoholic father of Jessica MacAllister’s son reappears in their lives, Jessica takes Jacob to Santa Cruz to visit her uncle George for advice and refuge.

Following a year of grief, Evelyn Sweeney is finally ready to move on. As she ponders her new path in life, her mind drifts to her first love, George MacAllister.

When the lives of these two women cross, they discover that one heart-shaped ring binds their stories together. But will the results be a rekindled faith and new hope? Or will it lead them both back into the darkness they’ve fought for so long?


Lisa Jordan
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Why Marriage Matters: Do Credit Cards Cause Problems in Your Marriage?

Wedding rings and large bills of moneyAround the country, people will be flocking to the post office today to mail their tax returns. 

Hubby and I are no different. 

One of my weaknesses is staying on top of my record keeping on a monthly basis. Each April I proclaim I’m going to do better, and each year I succeed–marginally.

As we talked about different expenses over the weekend, Hubby and I were able to speak calmly and rationally about changes in our budget. We even teased about a major purchase I want badly. 

That wasn’t always the case in our marriage.

Almost 10 years ago, we started to accumulate a large credit card debt on separate cards, but neither really knew how much debt the other cards held until I wasn’t able to cover my debt from a side business I had.

Even though people joke about it, retail therapy can be as addicting as drugs and alcohol. I became an emotional shopper. Browsing through clearance racks and finding great deals filled me with a retail “high.” I told myself I could quit with one purchase. And I could pass up deals any time I wanted. I justified my purchases by saying I got such a great deal on them. Then I started hiding what I bought. Little by little, the purchases and monthly fees accumulated to where the credit card amounts due were higher than I could afford. 

I felt sick to my stomach when I realized my credit card debt had spiraled out of control. With a pounding heart and shaky legs, I went to Hubby and confessed what I had done. He was quite shocked, but he never freaked out on me. I was so afraid he’d lash out. Or worse–leave me. 

We talked and realized we needed outside help to fix this problem. 

Believe it or not, but that problem brought us closer together. 

We realized it wasn’t my problem or his problem, but OUR problem. I confessed about certain negative feelings and fears I had, but Hubby offered me love and support. I wasn’t the only guilty one either. He had used another card quite a bit too. 

We worked together, took steps to clear this debt and then celebrated when we made the final payment. Talk about a feeling of freedom! 

For the past few years, we’ve lived successfully without credit cards by maintaining a separate savings account. When our hot water heater broke, we were able to pay for a new one in cash. Just the other day, Hubby mentioned how nice it was not to rely on credit to pay for something we needed for the house.

Credit cards offer rewards for college tuition, Disney points, cash back, etc… Those perks are great if you’re maintaing a healthy respect for the card use. The key to using a credit card properly and still reaping the benefit of the rewards is to use them only when you can pay off the amount due each month before the due date. 

My friend uses her credit card for almost everything. When she buys something with her credit card, she deducts the amount from her checking account. That way she has the money to pay the balance due on her card each month without accumulating monthly fees and interest. 

Over the weekend, I handed Hubby a credit card application and said I wanted to apply for it for traveling purposes. We’re finding certain hotels ask for a credit card for incidentals during stays, but when you offer your debit/check card, they freeze your account or freeze a certain amount. Not all hotels do this, but some do. I reassured him the card wouldn’t be used for shopping trips, etc. I wasn’t slipping back into that old habit. If I can’t pay cash for it, then I don’t need it. 

Hubby is the rational one in our marriage. I rule with my heart. He completes me in such a fantastic way. He helps me see the reasoning behind certain financial choices we need to make for our budget. When expensive projects come up, we talk about them. Last summer we needed a new roof and new windows. The cost was high, so we discussed our options and made the right choice for us. 

When I want to go shopping with my friends, Hubby kisses me good-bye and tells me to have a great time. He doesn’t lecture me about responsible spending. He may joke and ask if I need adult supervision, but I assure him I will be fine. 

Each couple is going to have a different financial experience. The key to keep money from causing problems in your marriage is to communicate openly and honestly about your needs and expectations. Keeping secrets from your spouse splinters the trust in your relationship. Irresponsible spending damages relationships quickly, especially when talking about money becomes a shouting match and accusations fly out faster than you can catch them.

When you’re faced with financial challenges, consider these options:

  • Pray and ask for God’s wisdom and discernment for direction.
  • Ask for outside help through credible organizations that can help you restructure your budget to make timely payments to clear up your debt.
  • If credit cards are an issue, cut them up.
  • Learn to live within your financial means without relying on plastic.
  • Celebrate small financial victories with one another.
  • Forgive past mistakes.
  • Make healthy financial choices together to strengthen your relationship for the long-term.

Your Turn: How do you feel talking money with loved ones? What suggestions can you offer others in helping them make wise financial choices?

Tweet this:

  • Are credit cards causing problems in your #marriage? @lisajordan offers suggestions to help. http://ow.ly/k2Umj  

 

 

Lisa Jordan
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Why Marriage Matters: What’s Unique About Your Marriage?

Why Marriage Matters post 4_8_13Over the weekend, I attended a training for my day job. The presenter handed out index cards and asked us to write something on the card that is unique about us. We turned in the cards, and throughout her presentation, she pulled a card and read the unique quality and we had to guess who the person was.

Being from out of town, I didn’t know many of the women in the group, so I had no idea who owned the unique quality she mentioned. 

Each one of us has unique qualities. In my training setting, my unique quality was I wrote Christian romance novels for Love Inspired. 

However, in this setting, my unique quality is the reverse–I’m also an early childhood educator. 

While considering a blog post for today, her question echoed through my head. In the middle of Sunday’s sermon, I pulled a notebook out of my purse and wrote, “What’s unique about your marriage?”

 Your marriage may seem routine or boring to you. But someone else may be able to zero in on your marriage’s uniqueness. 

The unique qualities of my marriage are:

  • Hubby and I dated long distance for 18 months before getting marriage, communicating by letters, phone calls and occasional visits. 
  • We eloped.
  • We weathered a terrible storm in our marriage and not only survived, but grew closer together. 
  • In October, we will celebrate 24 years of marriage–something that’s becoming less common.

Your Turn: What’s unique about your marriage? If you’re not married, what’s unique about your parents’ or a sibling’s or a friend’s marriage?

Lisa Jordan
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Why Marriage Matters: Supporting Your Spouse Through a Job Loss

Supporting Your Spouse Through Job Loss GraphicIn January 2009, Hubby came home from work early. I was so surprised to see him and asked if he was feeling well. He had an expression on his face that imprinted into my memory. Before he said anything, a chill coiled in the pit of my stomach. My heart pounded against my ribcage. Then he said the words that sent a spiral of panic coursing through my veins…”Due to economic downsizing, I’ve been let go.”

His position had been eliminated.

I’m a stay-at-home-work-at-home mom, but Hubby’s income was our primary financial resource, and he carried the insurance for our family. 

After the initial shock wore off, I remembered a conversation I had with God a few months before that. I had thanked Him for Hubby’s recent promotion, then asked Him to prevent Hubby from being affected by the layoff rumors.

From January 2009 to July 2012, Hubby had a couple of temporary jobs, but nothing permanent. God opened the door for him to return to school to get his degree in business. However, when he graduated, he struggled to find a job. He received interviews, even second interviews, but no job offers…until God opened that door last July. 

During those three years, I learned a few things about supporting a spouse:

  • Pray for your spouse. Ask God to give you the words to encourage and the patience to endure the trials to come. Ask God to open doors on your spouse’s behalf. Ask God to give your spouse a sense of fulfillment and encouragement.
  • Expect a variety of emotions. Hubby’s career counselor likened losing a job to going through divorce. Your spouse may experience negative emotions–sadness, frustration, depression, anxiety, feelings of failure–and it’s so hard to see him feel this way. Men, in particular, feel the need to be providers. When this is taken from them, they struggle and can feel like they’re failing their families.
  • Speak his language. His love language, that is. Let him know through your positive actions and words that you’ve got his back–you’ll be by his side and you will work through this together. Speak truth to his strengths. Remind him of his positive traits. Encourage him to stay active in his other roles.
  • Voice your expectations. If you’d like your spouse to take on more responsibilities around the house while he’s looking for a new job, be sure to work together so you both know what each other’s expectations are. Men and women have different ideas of clean and what needs to be done. Your hubby may not be bothered by the overflowing laundry basket or realize you’ve been out of milk for two days. Being clear in your expectations helps to eliminate frustration and resentment.
  • Consider your finances. Review your finances as a couple and share ways you can cut back on unnecessary expenses. Be creative for date nights and family fun events that cost little or no money. 
  • Resist the urge to “help” your spouse with his job search. While you may think you’re being helpful by sharing job opportunities from the classifieds or Monster.com, your spouse may feel pressured already. 

Your spouse’s loss of job can turn out to be a mixed blessing–more family time, less time spent commuting. Be sure to take time to communicate concerns. Be quick to listen and slow to lash out in anger or frustration. This is a difficult time for all of you, but it’s a season. God has a plan and a purpose for your lives. 

Why Marriage Matters graphic

 

Your Turn: Has your spouse or another family member experienced a job loss? How did you support him or her?

If you’d like to write for Why Marriage Matters, be sure to read the details here: Why Marriage Matters Guidelines

Lisa Jordan
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