My name is Pamela Cook. I am married to my best friend Hunter and am a stay-at-home-mom to five amazing children. Above all, I strive to honor God in all I do.
Category Archives: Marriage Matters
I started blogging as a personal outlet and as a sort of accountability. It’s been 9 months since I have posted anything, due to some major life changes this past year. I would like to believe that someone has missed my blogging, but in reality, I am probably the only one that really cares. =) Hopefully I will be able to get back to a regular schedule. 2012 has been a difficult year. Unforeseen circumstances led me to a place of worry and fear. I found myself asking, “why”. Why would God allow us to go through these things? Why does life have to be so hard? Why are people so hurtful? Why do they do such awful things? Why is the world so unGodly? Why can’t we all get along? I don’t understand all of the answers to all the why’s. But I do know that I serve an awesome God who is in complete control of every little, intimate detail of my life. I know that all things work together for the good of those who love God and that with God all things are possible. The week before Christmas, 2011, Hunter was unexpectedly laid off. We were both in a state of shock and disbelief. We had been pretty confident in his job security. We were apparently overconfident. Life as I knew it was over. I was used to being my own boss. I could send the kids off to school and the day was mine to do as I pleased. Of course I had daily chores and obligations, but I could do it at my pace, and in my time, without interruption. This was all over. In my heart, I knew that things were going to be hard. I was certain that our marriage would suffer. I believe with all my heart, that God did NOT intend for husband and wife to spend every waking moment together! I was prepared for intense conflict…but God had something else in mind. Instead of conflict and turmoil, He allowed our relationship to be strengthened. Over the next months, our love for each other grew. We spent an incredible amount of time together…and it was good! He was home to help with homework and bedtime. He was able to help with the toting of kids to and from their activities. We talked! Not the normal way, where I talk and he pretends to listen. Or where he talks and I don’t hear a word. It was more than talking, it was communication. It was a new revelation! How amazing it is when a husband and wife actual communicate with each other and are on the same page. There are times when it feels as if we are in different chapters of different books, but God gave us a gift. Not only were we in the same book, but the same chapter and page. We learned to love and appreciate each other in a new way. I am always amazed by the unique ways that God has of getting our attention and working in our lives! We were blessed to have had some money from our fall harvest to be able to supplement unemployment for those months. God was there! In April, Hunter started a new job. He couldn’t get many hours and the pay turned out to be worse than being on unemployment. Our money had run out and financially, we started heading downhill. To top it off, he hated the job. He was coming home every night physically drained, and as the bills started piling up he became emotionally drained, also. He held on, hoping and waiting for things to change, but after several months, there was no change and we were getting farther behind. He began to look for other work, but nothing seemed to be working out. We were both becoming discouraged. It’s so easy to trust God when things are manageable, but when things get completely out of your control, it’s so much harder. We prayed so fervently and it seemed as if God was just holding things in His hand to prove that He could. During the unemployment, we were still getting by, we had the extra funds and everything seemed to be working out. We were getting along wonderfully and had a lot more family time. We knew God was with us, but we still felt like we were “in control” of things. But now, with the new, awful job and the depleted funds, things were hard. We realized that we had NO control over our lives. God was controlling everything. Through much prayer and perseverance, and a time of truly giving everything over to Him, God blessed us with another job. In September, Hunter started a new job that he enjoys and (after we get caught up) it should be able to sustain us. God is always working, whether we see it or not. He is in control of everything. There is nothing too big or too small for Him to handle. He has our best interest in mind…always. He will never leave us nor forsake us. He is the One True God, Awesome in Power, Mighty in Love and Worthy of all our Honor and Praise! It’s so easy to praise God when life is going good, but it can be a real challenge to praise Him in the hard times. Praying always, with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit. Give it all to God, no matter what. Let everything else go and hold on to Him as tight as you can. He covers a multitude of sin. There is nothing too big that His mighty power cannot overcome. Feeling very unworthy of his love and forgiveness today. And so very aware of His never-ending mercy and grace that He gave us on the cross. Thank you, God, for loving me through all my faults and failures. I’m so grateful that Your mercies ARE new EVERY morning. I love this song as a reminder to praise Him in everything.
Family: Pursue Peace
☐ Remember I love them and they are mine.
☐ Remember they love me.
☐ Show them my love.
☐ Let it go.
☐ Don’t harbor hurt feelings.
☐ Touch base once a week.
☐ Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing. I Thessalonians 5:11
Occasionally we have moments when we don’t want to claim our family. There is something they do that embarrasses us and we would rather not be associated with them. This month my resolution is to focus on the good qualities and attributes of my family, from my grandma all the way to my kids. Occasionally we need to remind ourselves why we love them. For this reason, my first resolution is to remember I love them and they are mine.
The people we love the most are the ones that hurt us most and vice versa. Not they we intentionally hurt each other, but when someone you love disappoints you, it hurts. If a friend or acquaintance disappoints us, it’s much easier to let it go because we don’t have as much invested in that relationship. When family members hurt us, it’s easy to feel unloved regardless of the fact that we KNOW they love us. My second resolution is to remember they love me.
Often we think of how we want others to treat us and have high expectations for others and yet don’t hold ourselves to the same standard. Resolution three is to show my love.
Resolutions four and five go hand in hand. Let it go and don’t harbor hurt feelings. This is not easy. When someone hurts you it’s hard to let it go and it’s even harder to leave it there. We tend to hold on to things. Even if we have apparently forgiven someone for hurting us, it’s easy down the road to pull that back out and dwell on it. This month I want to examine my heart and ensure that I am not harboring past hurts and that I really let them go for good.
I am embarrassed to say that I have gone months at a time without talking to my brothers or having any contact at all. To maintain my innocence I acknowledge that they don’t call me either, so I shouldn’t feel bad. In the end, I still end up feeling guilty. Touching base once a week will allow me to build stronger relationships with my family.
It’s easy to allow little things to hinder a relationship. It’s hard to let go of hurt feelings. This month my resolutions are meant to remind me to encourage and build up my family. Friends come and go, but your family is yours for life.
Do you ever feel like you have so much to do, you don’t know which way is up and the things you need to do aren’t the things you want to do and the things you want to do aren’t even things you REALLY want to do and the things you REALLY want to do always seem to get swept under the rug??
October was one of those months for me. I feel as though my month of “growing love” wasn’t very successful. Week one was good, but the following two weeks were tough. For no apparent reason, it was a difficult couple of weeks. I was feeling pretty discouraged. Week four was better and although I feel as though October was a bust, November has been a great month so far. So in the end, although I couldn’t see the progress at the time, maybe we did “grow love”.
It’s amazing how much smoother our lives run when we are on the same page. With all the demands of life, it’s hard to take time alone and invest in your marriage. There are other things in life that can take the back burner. Continue growing love and it will grow and strengthen your family. When mom and dad are connected and have the same goals, the family will reap the benefits.
I will move on keeping in mind my September and October goals and add my November resolutions. The journey continues.
September – Get Energized ✓
But be very careful to keep the commandment and the law that Moses the servant of the LORD gave you: to love the LORD your God, to walk in obedience to him, to keep his commands, to hold fast to him and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul.” Joshua 22:5
October – Grow Love ✓
Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. Ephesians 5:22
November – Gratitude
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. Philippians 4:6
It’s so easy, day in and day out, to get caught up in the mundaneness of life. We’re so busy surviving, that we sometimes forget to slow down and really take things in. There have been instances when I’m busy … Continue reading
10 years ago today, a 20-year-old single mom of two little boys, married their 21-year-old rough-around-the-edges father. She had no idea what she was getting into, nor did he. Up until that day, through no fault of his own, he was only their father, he never really had the chance to be their dad.
Their first year together was rough. They were learning how to make things work. Their family grew. It grew and it grew. And as it grew, they faced more and more challenges, but they faced them together.
In 2007, they moved their family 350 miles away from everything they had ever known. The kids made friends quickly, but they struggled through, thinking of everything they had left behind.
As time went on, their love grew. This move, though incredibly difficult, proved to be very strengthening for not only their marriage, but for their family as a whole.
She grew more in love with him everyday, not even knowing that it was possible to love anymore.
Ten years ago today, I married a 21-year-old rough-around-the-edges truck driver. Today, I am married to an amazing man who has become the most wonderful husband and father. He has exceeded all of my expectations and shown me a love I could have never imagined. He is such a great father to our five amazing children and as the children grow and we face new challenges, he continues to step up to the plate and face them head on.
He is such an incredible husband. He makes up for my weaknesses and gives me strength when I am wavering. He is patient with my blonde moments and loves me regardless of my shortcomings. He encourages me when I am feeling insufficient and forgives my mistakes. He puts aside his desires to focus on the wants and needs of our family.
I am so blessed to have spent the past 10 years to getting know him and watching him grow into the amazing man that he is today. I have fallen so in-love with him and that love just continues grow.
Thank you so much for sharing your life with me. I can’t wait to see what new adventures God has in store for us in the next 10 years!
You are the love of my life! I am so proud to call you my mine!
I love you! Happy Anniversary!
Do you remember when you said your wedding vows? When you looked into the eyes of the one you loved and vowed to never leave them or forsake them? Do you remember feeling almost giddy with joy for your new lives together…forever?
I remember that day well. I remember thinking how happy we would be. I expected hard times. I did not think that we would always agree. I felt as though I had realistic expectations of what marriage would be. I was wrong.
Yes, I expected disagreements and arguments, but I did not expect to feel lonely. I had no idea that I could be married and be lonely. To have someone who is supposed to be by your side and support you through your ups and downs, and then realizing that they aren’t there is a heart-wrenching feeling.
There have been times in our marriage when it would have been easy to walk away. Neither of us is without fault. Marriage is a two-way street. The first couple of years were very difficult for us. They were tough. Life is tough.
God never promised that it would be easy, but He did say He would help us through the storm. If we could only get past our sinful nature and follow His Word, what a difference that would make. I recently heard a radio broadcast asking the question “what is it like to be married to me?” What a thought! I obviously know what it’s like to be married to Hunter. Some days are easier than others. Some days are just difficult. I am not sure that I have thought about what it’s like to be married to me. In my own logic, I feel that if he only knew how I felt and could see things through my eyes then he would understand. But, have I ever tried to see things through his eyes?
We teach our children to put others first. We go over and over the concept of thinking of other people’s feelings, but do we truly model this in our marriage?
As the years have gone by, our marriage has gained tremendous strength. There are days when my love cup is overflowing, and I don’t know how I could love him more. Yet, there are days when I wonder why I am still here and my heart feels so empty.
My marriage continues to grow daily, and we continue to learn new things about each other. I have been digging into God’s Word, reading books and listening to programs and sermons on marriage and the family. I want to be equipped for whatever comes our way because I am not backing down. With God’s loving hand guiding my life, I will not fail. With Him by my side, I can face the storms.
I long for a love to last a lifetime.
Philippians 4:13 “I can do all this through Him who gives me strength.”