"Do I" by Luke Bryan

“Do I”

Baby, what are we becoming?
It feels just like we’re always running
Rolling through the motions every day

I could lean in to hold you
Or act like I don’t even know you
Seems like you could care less either way

What happened to that girl I used to know?
I just want us back to the way we were before

Do I turn you on at all when I kiss you baby?
Does the sight of me wanting you drive you crazy?
Do I have your love? Am I still enough?
Tell me, don’t I? Or tell me, do I, baby

Give you everything that you ever wanted?
Would you rather just turn away and leave me lonely?
Do I just need to give up and get on with my life?
Baby, do I?

Remember when we didn’t have nothing
But a perfect simple kind of loving?
Baby, those sure were the days

There was a time our love ran wild and free
But now I’m second guessing everything I see!

Do I turn you on at all when I kiss you baby?
Does the sight of me wanting you drive you crazy?
Do I have your love? Am I still enough?
Tell me, don’t I? Or tell me, do I, baby

Give you everything that you ever wanted?
Would you rather just turn away and leave me lonely?
Do I just need to give up and get on with my life?

Baby, do I still give you what you need?
Still take your breath away?
Light up the spark way down deep?
Baby, do I?!

Whoa! Do I turn you on at all when I kiss you baby?
Does the sight of me wanting you drive you crazy?
Do I have your love? Am I still enough?
Tell me, don’t I? Or tell me, do I, baby

Give you everything that you ever wanted?
Would you rather just turn away and leave me lonely?
Do I just need to give up and get on with my life?
Tell me baby, do I get one more try? Do I?
Baby, do I?

A Threefold Cord is not Quickly Broken. :)

Keep It Simple

One of my favorite biblical passages related to marriage is found in Ecclesiastes 4:9-12, which says this:

Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labor. For if they fall, one will lift up his companion. But woe to him who is alone when he falls, for he has no one to help him up. Again, if two lie down together, they will keep warm; but how can one be warm alone? Though one may be overpowered by another, two can withstand him. And a threefold cord is not quickly broken.”

When we read about how God created marriage in the Garden of Eden, we always think of the first couple, Adam and Eve. That’s two people. We tend to forget that the Bible says God walked among them in the Garden. It wasn’t just Adam and Eve. It was Adam and Eve and God—a cord of three strands.

A successful marriage requires a man and a wife, with God at the center. This three-part relationship is essential to success—especially in building a marriage that can survive the trials of life.

At a recent conference, I had the honor of hosting three celebrity couples and talking to them about what it meant for God to be central to their marriages. Here are three things that stand out.

Sexuality: Sean and Catherine Lowe met the old-fashioned way—he was a contestant on The Bachelor and she was one of the women vying for his affection. Actually, there’s nothing traditional about the format, but Sean, a devout Christian, was determined to remain a role model throughout the process.

After connecting during the show, the couple made headlines by announcing they would wait until marriage to have sex. By inviting God into their burgeoning relationship, they set an example for everyone watching them. 

“You will not regret that decision to wait until marriage,” Sean says. “It’s such a special, intimate thing that God has created for you and that one person you’re going to go through life with.” Catherine told me that the two of them held each other accountable. “It’s the most amazing thing that I have been blessed with,” she says.

Communication: Tim Brown is an NFL Hall of Fame receiver who won the Heisman Trophy in 1987 and spent the bulk of his career with the Oakland Raiders. He was known for his intense work ethic on and off the field, but said his relationship with his wife, Sherice, required just as much effort—and maybe more.

“Marriage is probably the most difficult thing that you ever go through, without a doubt. This is an ever-changing being,” Tim says. He explains that it’s essential to turn to God when “things start to slide a little bit” in your relationship.

Sherice agrees, and says a couple has to rely on God to help them work through decisions and disagreements. “Communication is key,” she explains. “If you don’t communicate, then there’s no way that your marriage is going to survive.

Tragedy: Singer-songwriter Steven Curtis Chapman and his wife, Mary Beth, went through a very public time of grief after their daughter, Maria, was killed in a car accident in their driveway. The only way the devastating event didn’t destroy their marriage was the fact that they relied on God to be their unbreakable strand.

“If God were not in the center of our relationship, it is a 100-percent truth we would not have survived,” Mary Beth says. Steven says that even when they had no clue how to love or understand each other in the wake of the heartbreak, they could turn to God, who became their anchor. 

“We’re trusting that your Word is true. We’re anchoring our hearts to that right now in this moment,” Steven says they prayed. “He has been faithful through all of it.”

Marriage is difficult. It requires work. Even godly relationships will encounter serious challenges. When these trials arrive, it’s important to have your marriage intertwined with God. These couples show that a “threefold cord” really can’t be broken.

The healing power of writing…

Evidence of the Healing Power of Expressive Writing

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Seeking counseling from a therapist is one of the most common recommendations for people who are struggling to cope with a recent emotional upheaval or with past traumas. Yet writing therapy, or expressive writing, has proven to be a powerful, free, and easily accessible remedy for both the mind and the body.

Writing is a form of expressive therapy that uses the process of creative writing to cope with and heal from emotional trauma. The relationship between expressive writing and healing was first studied by Dr. James Pennebaker in the late 1980s, whose seminal study revealed striking benefits of writing about trauma.

In Pennebaker’s experiment, participants in the experimental group were instructed to write their deepest feelings and thoughts about a past trauma or emotional upheaval, while participants in the control group were instructed to simply write factually about superficial or neutral topics, without engaging with their emotions. Both groups wrote for 15 minutes a day for four consecutive days. Surprisingly, measurements of the participants’ cellular immune-system function and health center visits revealed that participants in the experimental group showed improved immune-system functioning (as evidenced by increased lymphocyte response) and had less visits to the health center in the following months than the control group.

The results of Pennebaker’s study suggest that confronting traumatic experiences is physically beneficial. It has long been assumed that inhibiting or repressing one’s feelings or thoughts negatively affects one’s health and can lead to long-term stress.

Coming to Terms with ‘Why?’

We seek to make sense of our experiences in life. When an unexpected trauma or emotional upheaval occurs – whether it is the death of a loved one, the sudden loss of employment and stability, or grave physical harm – we have an inherent desire to make sense of it all. We want to understand why it happened, and what to do next.

When we write about psychologically upsetting experiences, we actively confront the event and the emotions it has engendered. We are able to give perspective to the experience and its relation to the rest of our lives by opening up about the trauma and constructing an understandable narrative of what occurred. In this way, expressive writing is much like excising a wound – rather than obsessively ruminating about the event in a manner that yields no answers, thus allowing the painful experience to fester and possibly lead to mental health problems, expressive writing allows us to cognitively confront, process, and heal from the pain.

Visible Evidence

Pennebaker’s original expressive writing paradigm has been replicated in hundreds of studies, each measuring different potential effects of expressive writing. One such study examined the effect of expressive writing on wound healing in older adults. In the study, the experimental group engaged in expressive writing for 20 minutes a day for 3 consecutive days, while the control group wrote about daily activities. Two weeks after witting, all participants were given a biopsy wound on the inner arm. Surprisingly, participants in the expressive writing condition had a greater portion of the wound healed (76%) than did those in the control group (only 42% healed) after a period of 11 days.

It is important to understand that keeping a diary or writing about a traumatic event isn’t the same as expressive writing and will not yield the same health benefits. Simply ruminating about an emotional upheaval can actually negatively impact one’s health, and writing about trauma too soon after it occurred can be emotionally overwhelming. To write about the same traumatic experience over and over again is similarly detrimental – rather, deeply engaging with the writing in a way that truly evaluates the experience over a few consecutive days has proven to be the best way to process and heal.

Another study by Pennebaker examined the immunological effects of thought suppression, and involved participants writing about either nonemotional or emotional events with or without thought suppression. The results demonstrated a significant increase in total lymphocytes and overall immune system functioning in the emotional writing groups, while the participants in the thought suppression condition displayed a significant decrease in lymphocyte levels. This research suggests that thought suppression negatively impacts the immune system, while dealing with emotional trauma through expressive writing can actually improve immune system functioning.

No Appointment Necessary

Expressive writing is a free, simple, and readily available way to take care of our health and prevent the mental and physical harms caused by the stress of emotional upheaval. It can help us to cope with a number of neuroses, including depression, the pain of major life traumas such as bereavement, violence, or a sudden diagnosis of a serious illness. Expressive writing promotes healing, and can help us to better control our emotions, to stop ruminating or obsessing about a traumatic event and instead derive meaning from what happened.

By Meg O’Connor

7 Morning Habits That Can Affect Your Entire Day

t can be easy to fall into a morning routine without considering how it impacts you later in the day.

Mental Floss |

  • Danielle Braff

Your morning routine is like setting up a string of dominoes: You line everything up for success, but one false move can cause it all to come tumbling down. In order to set the right tone for the rest of your day, experts say you should adjust the following seven habits.

1. Hitting the Snooze Button

It’s tempting to steal a few more minutes of sleep, but hitting snooze has a negative impact on your physical and emotional well-being, says Joanna Kleinman, owner of The Center for Extraordinary Relationships. “Physically, hitting the snooze button actually sets you up to be groggy and less productive because you are repeatedly waking yourself out of a deep sleep,” Kleinman says. “Emotionally, you set yourself up to be late, rushed, and stressed in the morning.”

The obvious solution, Kleinman says, is getting out of bed right away (even if it seems impossible). “If we listen to our minds telling us what we feel like doing, we will never be able to make the positive changes we need to,” Kleinman says.

2. Checking Your Phone

Doing this first thing in the morning stimulates self-criticism and judgments in your mind, Kleinman says. “Your emails and texts are all about things to do, things to buy, things to add to your to-do list,” she says. “This amounts to either the stuff that other people want you to be paying attention to, or what your mind says you should be paying attention to.”

Even if you leave your inbox alone and stick to Instagram, you can do harm to your psyche because social media causes you to compare yourself to other people. Bottom line: Checking your phone first thing can awaken your inner critic. To stop yourself from opening Twitter immediately after turning off your alarm, charge your phone in another room. Begin your day instead with a self-affirming habit like journaling or meditation.

3. Planning Your Day

If you wake up and have no idea what’s on your schedule, where you have to be, or what you’re going to wear, then your day is already off to a frantic start. Psychologist and Certified Master Coach Joel Ingersoll recommends organizing your day the night before. This way, you’ll feel refreshed and ready to go in the morning.

4. Drinking Water…

You may be craving a cup of coffee as soon as your feet hit the floor, but what your body really needs is a glass of water, Ingersoll says. Since you haven’t had any liquids in your system for at least six (or hopefully eight) hours, your body is dehydrated. You can have the coffee (see below), but your body will function better—you’ll have fewer headaches, less fatigue, and smaller bags under your eyes—if you down a glass of water first, Ingersoll says.

5. …and Coffee

Don’t feel guilty about reaching for the coffee pot after you’ve had your water—it is actually good for your body, too, says Ilyse Schapiro, a Registered Dietitian and Certified Dietitian/Nutritionist. “Coffee is a great source of antioxidants, and it can increase energy as well as help to stabilize our moods,” Schapiro says. “It can also help keep our brains healthier and our minds sharper.”

Too much coffee isn’t going to do you any favors, though. Stick with one or two cups a day, and be consistent with how much you drink, or else you’ll start getting headaches and withdrawal symptoms.

6. Skipping Breakfast

Have you been told to eat a good breakfast before? That’s because it’s important, says Bruno LoGreco, life coach and author of Stop Sabotaging Your Life. “Eating a healthy breakfast consisting of nuts, fruits, and oats will satisfy your brain to get you through a tough day at the office,” LoGreco says. It’s best to skip the doughnuts and croissants, though, as these will give you a sugar high and set you up for a crash just as you reach your desk.

7. Rising Early

A study published by the American Psychological Association found that early risers are happier and more successful than those who go to bed late. They tend to be more proactive, get better grades, and better anticipate and minimize problems.

Danielle Braff is a freelance writer in Chicago. Her work has appeared in the Chicago Tribune, Crain’s Chicago Business, Women’s Health, Self and Marie Claire, among others. She lives with her husband, their two daughters, two cats and a dog. Check out her other work at Daniellebraff.com.

Amazed – Lonestar

Every time our eyes meet
This feeling inside me
Is almost more than I can take
Baby, when you touch me
I can feel how much you love me
And it just blows me away
I’ve never been this close to anyone or anything
I can hear your thoughts, I can see your dreamsI don’t know how you do what you do
I’m so in love with you
It just keeps getting better
I want to spend the rest of my life with you by my side
Forever and ever
Every little thing that you do
Baby, I’m amazed by youThe smell of your skin
The taste of your kiss
The way you whisper in the dark
Your hair all around me
Baby, you surround me
Touch every place in my heart
And it feels like the first time every time
I want to spend the whole night in your eyesI don’t know how you do what you do
I’m so in love with you
It just keeps getting better
I want to spend the rest of my life with you by my side
Forever and ever
Every little thing that you do
Baby, I’m amazed by youEvery little thing that you do
I’m so in love with you
It just keeps getting better
I want to spend the rest of my life with you by my side
Forever and ever
Every little thing that you do, oh
Every little thing that you do
Baby, I’m amazed by you

I'm Already There – Lonestar

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I’m Already ThereLonestarHe called her on the road
From a lonely, cold hotel room
Just to hear her say I love you one more time
But when he heard the sound
Of the kids laughing in the background
He had to wipe away a tear from his eye
A little voice came on the phone
Said, “Daddy when you coming home?”
He said the first thing that came to his mindI’m already there
Take a look around
I’m the sunshine in your hair
I’m the shadow on the ground
I’m the whisper in the wind
I’m your imaginary friend
And I know I’m in your prayers
Oh, I’m already thereShe got back on the phone
Said I really miss you, darling
Don’t worry about the kids–they’ll be all right
Wish I was in your arms
Lying right there beside you
But I know that I’ll be in your dreams tonight
And I’ll gently kiss your lips
Touch you with my fingertips
So turn out the light and close your eyesI’m already there
Don’t make a sound
I’m the beat in your heart
I’m the moonlight shining down
I’m the whisper in the wind
And I’ll be there until the end
Can you feel the love that we share?
Oh, I’m already thereWe may be a thousand miles apart
But I’ll be with you wherever you areI’m already there
Take a look around
I’m the sunshine in your hair
I’m the shadow on the ground
I’m the whisper in the wind
And I’ll be there until the end
Can you feel the love that we share?
Oh, I’m already there
Oh, I’m already there

I'm Not Who I Was – Brandon Heath

I wish you could see me now
I wish I could show you how
I’m not who I wasI used to be mad at you
A little on the hurt side too
But I’m not who I wasI found my way around
To forgiving you some time ago
But I never got to tell you soI found us in a photograph
I saw me and I had to laugh
You know, I’m not who I wasYou were there, you were right above me
And I wonder if you ever loved me
Just for who I wasWhen the pain came back again
Like a bitter friend it was all that I could do
To keep myself from blaming youI reckon it’s a funny thing
I figured out I can sing
Now I’m not who I wasI write about love and such
Maybe ’cause I want it so much
I’m not who I wasI was thinking maybe I
I should let you know that I am not the same
But I never did forget your name, helloWell the thing I find most amazing
In amazing grace is the chance to give it out
Maybe that’s what love is all aboutI wish you could see me now
I wish I could show you how
I’m not who I was

Source: LyricFindSongwriters: Brandon Heath