/**/ The Purposeful Wife: Gems from the Lovely Ruth Bell Graham

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Gems from the Lovely Ruth Bell Graham

Recently I've been dabbling in Ruth Bell Graham's autobiographical sketches, entitled It's My Turn. My Pastor's wife found it in a thrift store, and after enjoying it herself passed it along to me.

Published in 1982, its tattered cover and scrolling title look every bit a product of its age.

But inside are tucked the most wonderful gems. Bits of wisdom for Christians, wives, and mothers- timeless truths, wonderful words of encouragement, all doused in a good sprinkling of wit and humor.

Here are a few I just had to share:

"I had, as it were, cut my teeth on the Bible, and do not recall a time when I did not love it. So it was to the Bible that I turned for comfort during the months of homesickness in North Korea" (Speaking of her boarding school years).  This is what I want my kids to say as adults!

"Where two people agree on everything, one of them is unnecessary" (Marital wisdom given to her at her bridal shower).

"Adapting to our husbands never implies the annihilation of our creativity, rather the blossoming of it."

"It is a foolish woman who expects her husband to be to her that which only Jesus Christ Himself can be: always ready to forgive, totally understanding, unendingly patient, invariably tender and loving, unfailing in every area, anticipating every need, and making more than adequate provision. Such expectations put a man under an impossible strain."

"Things of true quality need not fear the years- it only improves them" (On marriage).

"Love is not merely the 'union of two good forgivers' but also the 'union of two good appreciators.'"

From her journal: "I am not walking the Lord's way at all. I am doing what I feel like doing rather than what I ought to do. Three verses hit me hard: 'She who is self-indulgent is dead even while she lives' (1 Timothy 5:6 RSV).....

Self-indulgence is doing what we want rather than what we ought. I had always thought of self-control applying to temper or drink. But what about the almonds in the pantry, the ice cream and chocolate sauce, the candy which I know will add unnecessary pounds and make my face break out? What about controlling my tongue? My tone of voice? Standing up straight? Writing letters? All these and many more need controlling." Wait- Ruth Bell Graham was human too???? Because this sounds just like me! So encouraging to know I am not alone.                                                                                                                                                              
If you happen upon a copy of It's My Turn in a thrift store, or a dusty, forgotten corner of an old church library, do pick it up. It is a quick and easy read that is well worth your time!


  1. Great thoughts you shared! I love the one about expecting husbands to be what only Jesus can be...SO important to know this and believe it!

    1. Amen, Kathy! Losing our ridiculous expectations (sometimes ones so hardwired we don't even realize we have them) is essential! :)

  2. Thanks for the book recommendation! I'm always looking for a good bio to read!


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