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For those of you who don’t get the weekly newsletter, Sheila’s 50th birthday is today! 

In the Friday newsletter last week I (Rebecca) sent out a request for birthday wishes and wow–we got a lot!

Sheila started this blog in 2008. That’s twelve years of doing this. Twelve years of helping marriages and families grow more like Christ. And so today I want to give a few stories of how my mom (Sheila) has helped marriages across the globe. Thank you to everyone who sent in your well-wishes, here are some highlights:

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Thank you for helping couples start off well

Dear Sheila, I’m praying that you have the happiest and most blessed 50th birthday celebration ever!!!  You don’t know me, but from the bottom of my heart, I am so thankful for your ministry. Your writings have been used by the Lord to do so much healing in my life and to help me look forward to a joyful union with my husband-to-be – I think I would still be too messed up to even think about getting married if it wasn’t for the help I’ve received from your book and your blog!  

So thank you again and may you know the Lord’s richest blessing on your life as you continue to serve Him.

Happy birthday! I wanted to take a moment to thank you for your ministry. I read “The Good Girl’s Guide” before I got married last June- I can’t emphasize to you how much your ministry has benefited me. You helped me to fill my head with positive, biblical messages about sex with my husband. It’s so easy to let bad messages from tv shows, movies, even the church sadly, fill up your head with all the wrong ideas. You have helped me so greatly, and I deeply appreciate it!! Your articles and blog are always a blessing and encouragement, and I appreciate you for taking on the hard task of talking about sex! Thank you, thank you for your work! God bless you in your 50th year!

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Sheila and Keith on their wedding day

Thank you from people who needed a “reset”

I cannot begin to tell you the impact your ministry has had on my life and my marriage. I didn’t even know how damaging the thoughts I had internalized about sex were, I just knew that I didn’t feel the way I wish I felt about it. And then a few years back, thank God, I stumbled on your blog. It helped me to finally realize why some of my beliefs were there in the first place and why they were so damaging. I am so thankful for you both acknowledging teachings that are harmful so we know we are not alone in feeling and believing certain things, and also for sharing biblical teachings about sex to help us heal and understand more of God’s design and love for us in our marriages.

Thank you for following God’s calling. Thank you for enduring the hardships that come with hearing hard stories, speaking against the grain, opening yourself to backlash and criticism, and doing the hard labor of your work! So many women, men, and marriages are being positively impacted by your work and I am so thankful God chose you to do this important job and that you said yes!

About 7 years ago (13 years into my good marriage) I decided to stop being sad about our sex life and changed my attitude. I had seen the damage I had done by not dealing with my insecurities and gatekeeping our sex life. With your help…I embarked on a new journey to take back what the enemy wanted to destroy! Our sex life has done a total 180! We are more connected now emotionally and physically – and continue to work on communicating our needs to one another without embarrassment.

I’m now at the place in our marriage where I desire sex and more adventure than he does! Neither of us could have imagined that 7 years ago.

Your blog, books and podcasts are a healthy, encouraging, realistic approach to an otherwise sensitive topic. The fact that you don’t shy away from anything that seems to come your way is incredible. It takes a lot of courage!

Happiest of birthdays to you! Thank you for giving us the tools to strengthen our marriage and our marriage bed!

Thank you, Shelia, for your work. I started my marriage believing a lot of lies about marriage, myself and sex. I stumbled across your blog looking for housekeeping encouragement and read a couple marriage article and then started following you. Your blog totally transformed my marriage. It changed how I view my husband, myself and especially how I viewed and enjoyed sex. It has been such an incredible gift and blessing for both me and my husband and I feel our marriage has thrived thanks to it. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for giving me that gift and allowing me to better understand God’s plan for me and my marriage.

Canadian Reader

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Sheila as a baby!

Thank you for speaking truth–even when it’s hard

A big thanks to Sheila for putting a healthy spin on sexuality from a Christian perspective. And drawing attention to how the church has dismissed and failed women. Jesus did not. Challenging the Christian status quo can be a voice in the wilderness with the resulting feedback that this ministry has experienced. Both positive and negative. Keep it up Sheila. So many on your side. To all those who keep ” To Love Honour and Vacuum” a big hip hip hooray!

Canadian Reader

I have gained more wisdom for my marriage (of almost 19 years!) on your site then any other, but these last few years have been extremely difficult and the insight I have found has helped me to stand up and fight for what is right. It has given me clarity when I was truly praying and searching for the good. You have helped me to step out of my boat, to find truth (aw man sooo much truth!) and shown me that intimacy is worth working for. 

The Lord has created you, bestowed the knowledge, given you Keith as a husband, made you, YOU to help all kinds of ladies (and men!) who have needed help! Wow! I believe the Lord has used it to better my marriage in so, so many ways! It isn’t even describable, however, the ripple effect of how you have helped me in my life, and in turn the example and legacy my husband and I are leaving our children and how that will in turn affect so many others… it is truly priceless. I know it is hard for you at times, but I believe in heaven some day, you will be blown away by all that God has done using your life. 

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Thank you for creating resources that can help marriages across the globe

Happy Birthday, Sheila, You are a great blessing!

I learned about your blog a few months after I got married. I was a shy church girl, who always dreaded going to bed with my husband and still felt that sex was a sin even in marriage. Following your blog was and is still a great blessing. I have learnt a lot about myself and how to enjoy sex.

I look forward to receiving your emails every morning and I sometimes share them with my husband. Thank you for all the insights, humour and the encouragement to become a better wife, mother and mentor.

You are doing a good job. Keep up!! Happy Fiftieth Birthday!!

Kenyan Reader

I have just started doing your boost your libido course and I already feel God is guiding me through you in my marriage that had a dead sex life for years.

You are a Godsend and I wish you a happy and blessed 50th all the way from Singapore.

And if you’d like to check out that Boost Your Libido course, you can do that right here

 

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But most of all, thank you for helping others discover who Jesus truly is.

This was a sentiment in so many of the messages we received. Sheila’s ministry is about more than just good sex–it’s about the gospel. Listen to these testimonies:  

Words can’t describe what a Godsend blessing you are to me. In my life, one of your blog posts was the beginning of the unveiling and unraveling of my abusive marriage. Now years later, my faith is stronger than ever and my thinking and understanding of who Jesus is is more clear than I ever imagined. Your teaching plays an enormous role in this ongoing journey.

One attribute about you I’ve observed in years of reading your articles, blog comment responses, listening to podcasts, and more is your relational and compassionate style. You extend empathy and grace in so many beautiful ways. And your advice is always so God centered and valuable. You aren’t afraid to tackle hard questions. You never give pat answers.

I also admire your work ethic and commitment. You’ve built an incredible ministry and I pray God continues to expand your territory in the next 50 years.

Sheila’s compassionate heartfelt, clear, and biblical teachings Have helped me immensely. I’m 7 years years into a tremendously happy marriage, and without her practical advice on everything from in-laws, to communication, to how to relax and really learn how to love your husband; I would not feel near the amount of confidence in learning all the time to be more like Jesus.

Even though it is completely virtual via TLHV Blog, may I say it has been my pleasure to know you for the past 4 years of your 50! In the past 4 years you have been part of my life in many important ways. You have been part of my marriage as I continue to work and grow in His Word. You have taught me that marriage is a beautiful way to express God’s love. You have been an important part of my spiritual growth. The number one way you have been part of my life is by watering my garden when I found Jesus. And you did it all from a computer all the way from Canada! For that I am so thankful. You are my e-mentor and have shown me by your example that JESUS is who I need to chase. I pray and hope that you continue to be blessed as you deliver God’s Word in the work you do. 

Phil

Sheila, you have changed my marriage, you have made me a better person, a better Christian, a better wife and a better mother. Thank you for always pointing me towards God. Happy Birthday!

I think that does an excellent job of summing it up. 

Thank you to everyone who sent in birthday wishes. I had to edit some down for brevity and couldn’t include them all in today’s post but I’m planning on sharing all of the messages with her in full later today. So she will see it, even if it wasn’t included in the post! 

If you would like to give Sheila a birthday gift today, please leave a comment about how this blog, Sheila’s books, or Sheila’s speaking ministry has helped you or your marriage. 

Our job is hard at times. And hearing how others are helped makes all the hard days worth it! 

Thank you for everything, Mom. We love you so much, and I hope you have an excellent birthday. 

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