By Jim Bull / Cowboys of the Cross

Jim Bull is a horseman from Kentucky who writes, The Bull Pen for the Cowboys of the Cross website, devotions meant to teach and encourage through illustrations from life.
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Jim Bull is a horseman from Kentucky who writes, The Bull Pen for the Cowboys of the Cross website, devotions meant to teach and encourage through illustrations from life.

I finally worked up the nerve to talk to my now wife, Laura, on September 22, 1999. Just over three months
later was New Years Eve and we, along with her roommate, were hosting an End of the Millennium
party. Some of the girls’ closest friends were there and I had come to know and respect them. During this
party, one of their friends pulled me to the side to tell me how happy she was for Laura and me; how
great we were for each other and how great I was to her.
I remember the feeling of the grin that spread across my face. The assurance, from a woman I barely
knew, was a great boost to my ego but, more importantly, made me want to do better. A little
encouragement goes a long way to building relationships, your own, as well as people you know or
encounter.
Hebrews 10:24-25 says “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good
deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another-
and all the more as you see the day approaching.”
My wife and I have been married for 16 years. In that time, we have had great moments of expressing
our love for each other. We have also had times of complacency, when we knew we loved each other
but failed to make the effort to show it unashamedly. I have had times when I felt I was a failure as a
husband because I knew my wife was feeling lonely and abandoned because I was wrapped up in work
and not putting forth the effort to show how much I needed her; how much I loved her. I have also felt
lonely, like a hired worker or a servant. It is in these times we were lacking communication and the
expression of our love, not that we were ever lacking the love itself.
Proverbs 31:28 says “Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her”
We are to tell our wives how blessed we are to have them. We should tell them all the wonderful things
we see in them; not just their outer beauty but inner beauty as well. We should tell them of the great
care they take of us, tell her you see her hard work and that you appreciate the effort she puts in daily
to take care of the family and household. Be sure to acknowledge her being a lady so she will continue
to be a lady.
After all this time together, after all the changes we have both made with our interests, habits and
looks, we are still blessed to have each other and work to acknowledge each our need for each
other. My advice to anyone in a relationship or looking for that special someone in the future is to not
be afraid of stepping outside your comfort zone when telling that person how you feel about
them. Also, we need to not be ashamed to tell friends that we see the way they are with their spouse or
girlfriend. Be supportive in the relationships of people you are around. You never know when you will
say something that they need to hear to motivate a fresh start to a stale relationship.
1 Peter 4:8 tells us “Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers a multitude of sins.”

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