What’s Cookin’ at Awaken-Love

I feel like I have a dozen pans in the oven, and I am not quite sure how to keep track of them. The last few months have been super busy for Awaken-Love and I don’t see things settling down anytime soon.  I have meetings with churches, a book to publish, administrative tasks for classes, development of the men’s curriculum  for videos, dreams of making a video for pre-marital counseling, another book running around in my head, missionaries developing online communities for skype video classes, a list of articles to write, and a dream of someday selling Awaken-Love t-shirts. My list seems to constantly grow and I find myself struggling to focus.

Help Wanted

I am beginning the process of looking for a very part time virtual assistant. Someone who can grow my social media presence, help cultivate community, improve marketing and perform some minor administrative tasks. But most importantly I want someone that understands the mission of Awaken-Love. If anyone has interest, please contact me.

Speaking

Since January I’ve had the chance to speak to about 8 women’s groups. The reception has been so positive as we discuss a topic rarely addressed – sex. Women seem hungry for information, and not the same old message of “Do it for your husband.” Many wives had tears well up in their eyes as they realized some of the assumptions they made about sex or their husband. I pray that many women find healing and  follow through by taking a video class to redefine sex.

Class Sign Ups

Over 170 women have signed up for either a live or video class since January. I am so blessed to work with other women investing to teach or facilitate Awaken-Love classes. They faithfully give their time because they know the importance of creating strong marriages. Women in Ohio, South Carolina, Florida, Idaho, Minnesota and even on the mission field. I am praying that God will raise up more warriors that understand the importance of reclaiming sex to strengthen marriage.

If you feel a nudge to make a difference in your local community, I would love to talk more with you. I am teaching a class starting April 12th from 7-9 PM CST that you could Skype into and experience Awaken-Love first hand.

Even if you can’t take a live class, anyone can host a video class. The videos provide all the teaching and discussion prompts. You create a safe place for women to learn, process and minister to each other.

Video Classes

Hosting a class is super easy. Once you find a private meeting place with good internet access, a screen for viewing, and 6 class dates, simply register yourself online. Afterwards you can send invitations to your friends and get ready to see God move. The cost is minimal – $10 registers each woman on the website and gives her access to the videos, curriculum and the daily emails as part of class. You can always contact me with any questions or assistance.

In the last 6 years, Awaken-Love has spread primarily by word of mouth. Women telling women, “you have to take this class!” Everyone from newlyweds to married 50 years. Women with great marriages and women trying to revive a marriage. Today over 1000 women have experienced transformation through Awaken-Love.

Changing the Culture of Sex in the Church

Now is the time to start talking about sex. To provide real answers to hurting couples navigating a world that has distorted sex. Now is the time to invest in marriages and families. We have to move beyond reading about sex and open up face to face conversations. If we want to change the culture of sex, then we have to get comfortable talking about sex. It is God’s domain and we ought to love sharing the truth.

Awaken-Love classes are a unique, no holds barred vehicle to break open respectful conversations about sex that is based on God’s word.  If you want the church to start talking about sex, then realize that you are the church. Don’t wait for you pastor, or women’s ministry director to offer a class. Have the courage to sign up for a class and invite your friends. You have no idea who might be desperate for help.

I remember the first year I taught classes. I was terrified. What if something came up that I didn’t know how to handle? What if I didn’t have the answer?

Guess what? After 6 years of teaching I still don’t know all the answers.  But God is good, and when I have no answer, I hang onto His truth.  When I don’t have the right words, someone else in class always does. I know that I will mess up, but God will work through all of my faults and weaknesses. I do not change lives, God does.

If you are interested in learning more about Awaken-Love, please contact me. I would love to talk to you.

Beth – The Latest Addition to Awaken-Love Teachers

Meet Beth, the most recent addition to the Awaken-Love teaching team. Beth will teach in Plymouth Minnesota at her church Wayzata Free.

I first heard Beth’s name several years ago when a student in class mentioned that her counselor had suggested she take an Awaken-Love class. Unbeknownst to me Beth was a huge fan of Awaken-Love and already spreading the word to women that needed help.

About a year later I got an email from Beth saying that she had been following my blog and so appreciated my stance on sexuality in marriage. Her words were kind, affirming and quite honestly, humbling. Here was this pastoral counselor thinking that I had something of value to say about marriage and sex.

A Lifeline

About a year later, Beth signed up for a class at just right the time. That winter I struggled with depression like I never had before and Beth became part of my lifeline. She tenderly created a safe place to grieve the loss of a ministry partner. Our times were steeped in prayer and asking God for answers.

In order to better understand my strengths and weaknesses Beth suggested I take some personality assessments. When she viewed the results, she immediately understood how hard ministry has been. Everything that I do –  teaching, speaking, writing, and stepping into emotional situations – does not come naturally for me. God called me to a ministry that requires dependence on Him instead of relying on my own abilities.

Beth also helped me to, shall we say, “Get my house in order.” I had started letting my emotions rule my life. The Holy Spirit needed to guide my spirit, my spirit to guide my emotions, and my emotions to guide my body. God gave me emotions to help me understand life, but they aren’t always an accurate guide, unless they are under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Beth was such a gift from God during that very hard time in my life.

Beth will make an amazing Awaken-Love teacher.

She has a powerful story of God’s redemption in her own marriage that has encouraged countless couples. Her sweet, gentle spirit constantly asks for wisdom and answers from the Father. Beth understands the importance of staying connected with her husband and continues to strive towards more freedom in her own marriage bed. But most importantly, I have met few women with as intimate a relationship with Jesus as Beth.

I am excited to watch God work through Beth as she joins the team of Awaken-Love teachers bringing God’s truth to women about sex.

How Do You Invite Someone to a Sex Class?

I remember the very first time I invited women to an Awaken-Love sex class. I was scared to death! Who would I invite? What would my friends think if I brought up the topic of sex? What if no one responded or better yet my friends stopped talking to me?

Many of you may have had the same thoughts as you considered hosting an Awaken-Love video class.

But you’ve read enough on the blogs to realize just how desperately wives need resources to encourage them in their sex life. You want to help. You want to do something, but you don’t even know where to start.

One Woman at a Time

Awaken-Love started as a grass roots effort. Out of obedience, I invited 8 close friends into my home because I heard God’s call to teach about sex.  And I believe Awaken-Love will continue to be a grass roots effort. As women experience transformation through Awaken-Love, they will catch the vision and feel compelled to share with friends.

(more…)

Why I Facilitated an Awaken-Love Video Class

Beth contacted me last Spring and I’ve asked her to share why she decided to facilitate Awaken-Love Video classes at her church in Ohio. 

I am not sure how I stumbled across the Christian Marriage Bloggers Association website.  What I do remember is what followed: an intense exploration of the marriage blogs listed in their directory.  Considering I had never read a blog before, I was fascinated.

Finding Awaken-Love

Several of the blogs really resonated with me and Awaken-Love was one of them. Thru the posts on the site, I was beginning to get a view of the marriage relationship in a whole new light. My husband and I had met young and between dating and marriage, we have been together over 37 years. You could say we knew each other pretty well . And yet…these articles seemed to hint at an area, a depth of intimacy that we might not have experienced.  As the saying goes, “You don’t know… what you don’t know.” The Awaken-Love site left me wondering what we didn’t know.

(more…)

Taking an Awaken Love Class on Your Own

A few months ago, a woman emailed asking if she could take the Awaken-Love class by herself. She was adamant that she would never consider taking the class with other women. After praying about the situation, I decided that taking the class by herself could still provide some benefit as she spent time reading great books, listening to the videos and wrestling about what she believed about sex. My one condition was that she give me feedback afterwards.

To be honest, the feedback was a mixed bag.

(more…)

Moving Forward for Awaken-Love

This summer I asked 3 couples to join Jim and me and form a leadership team for Awaken-Love. I asked couples because

The mission of the Awaken-Love ministry is to encourage men and women to claim God’s design for intimacy and equip them to share that truth with others.

I believe that just like Christian women, men need good resources about sex. The church must go beyond helping men stay pure and provide resources to help them create a great sex life with their wife. Jim and I have been teaching Awaken-Love Men’s Edition but we are praying about how to make the class available to others in the future.

(more…)

Meet Jenna – a new Awaken-Love teacher in Ramsey MN

This week I got to do one of my favorite things,  add a new name to the list of Awaken-Love teachers.

Jenna will teach classes in Ramsey Minnesota and  has already scheduled her first class.

  • Thursday’s 6:30-8:30pm, July 20, 27 & August 10, 17, 24 & 31
  • Pathway Community Church in Ramsey, MN

Jenna has a heart for sexual wholeness

(more…)

The Awaken-Love Video Class is Here!

When God calls you to something, He doesn’t do it half way. He prepares the path, opens the doors, provides for every detail, equips you, stretches and grows you and brings it to completion. God is faithful and ensures that His purposes are fulfilled.

We are beyond excited to introduce the Awaken-Love Video Class for married women.  It was God’s idea, He will be the One that calls women to take the class, and He is the One that changes lives.

 

Many of you have encouraged us, prayed, provided funds and urged us to press on when we battled our own insecurities and were tested by waiting. Thank you! This Video Class would not be available to married women around the world without you!

As we continue working together to boldly share how powerfully GOOD God designed sex within marriage to be, will you please pray about whether:

God is calling you to talk to one friend about the Video Class.

God is calling you to invest in younger women by leading a group through the Video Class.

God is calling you to gather a group of friends to take the Video Class.

God is calling you to talk to your church or Bible study about the Video Class.

You will see God move in amazing ways…

Prayer and the Awaken-Love Video Class

IMG_4801Last May, as Ruth and I filmed the Awaken-Love Video Class, we asked for your prayers. As we filmed, it was obvious that every detail was prepared by God and bathed in prayer. The equipment ran smoothly, we got through all the takes needed in our tight schedule, and we were clearly hearing from God as we prayed throughout the day. However, I have to admit that I went into the process a bit naïve. As silly as it sounds, I expected that once we walked into the room that became our studio that there would be an overwhelming peace. Maybe even an angelic choir singing as we entered the doorway. I considered that studio holy ground (and even filmed with my shoes off.)

That studio was indeed a holy place where God’s Spirit worked through two ordinary women to share truth about sex and intimacy. But the battle was afoot.

(more…)