Always gather your family to the dinner table to eat and fellowship together. And then Read God's Word and pray together. Take up your responsibility as the priest of the home.
Above Rubies Daily Encouragement Blogs
Through the weekly and daily devotionals you can be constantly encouraged in your great role of parenting, the highest career in the nation. You can also stay updated on what's happening with the Above Rubies ministry.
Colin Campbell is an internationally known author, speaker, and authority on Biblical Manhood and Family.
Called to the encouragement and lifting up of men throughout the world Colin is an author of books, teaching CDs and DVD's.
As author of Where Are The Real Men of God? and 21st Century Patriarch DVD studies, Colin often speaks at family retreats and Men's groups throughout the year also.
Believing God’s plan is "building godly generations" through men and families, he seeks to impart God’s truth to the next generation and their children too.
The daily news constantly brings attention to negative and sensational problems. To be honest, as a nation we truly face a lot of serious stuff. Added to his, we have our own challenges, whether it be members of our families who are either sick, in hospital, or facing marriage, financial, or spiritual problems. All these things bring stress.
We tend to talk to one another, which may in a small measure relieve some of the pressure, but in most cases, it tends to compound the problem and create more pressure. It seems the last thing we Christians do is go to God and seriously talk to Him about the difficulties that weigh us down. This is sad, but true. We should be so busy talking to our miraculous God, who alone has the ability to change any situation, that we do not have time to be mulling the problems over and over in our heads. All this does is raise our blood pressure to the point where it shoots through the roof.
Many of our precious young people in this country of liberty and freedom are weighed down with social problems at home, as well as with their friends at school and work. This multiplies suicide and drug overdose to try and escape the mental and emotional pressures.
It all boils down the fact that they do not have praying parents who in turn taught them how to seriously, and I must say, gratefully and cheerfully, bring everything in their lives to God in prayer.
PRAYER SHOULD BE THE TOP PRIORITY FOR EVERY DAY OF OUR LIVES!
James 1:6 says: “You have not because you ask not.”
How each of our families need the Holy Spirit’s power and assistance. We live in a very deceived world. Many are deceived about moral issues, e.g. homosexual views including gay marriage, abortions, Planned Parenthood, divorce, and couples cohabiting together as partners. Many are deceived by tolerance towards many of the extreme doctrines of Islam such as Sharia law which degrades women, and yet it seems that feminists have no issue with it. How deceived are they?
Many are deceived into believing it is godly to limit the number of children they should birth and raise. Many are deceived into pushing their children into socialistic state schools where liberalism and anti-conservative values are taught and practiced.
If you are a conservative guest speaker, you may be attacked and screamed down. What happened to freedom of speech in many of our college/universities today?
It is increasingly evident that we are in the midst of a big spiritual battle for the heart and soul of our nation. If the early church believed they needed the fullness and power of the Holy Spirit, how much more do we need Him at this critical time of our history.
As parents, there some important things we can and must do for our children. Firstly, we must teach them about the Holy Spirit having His rightful place in their lives. How can they desire Him if they don’t know Him?
Secondly, we must daily pray for them so their hearts will be open and desirous of His involvement in their lives.
Thirdly, we must find some place of worship where the Holy Spirit is moving so they will become more familiar with the Holy Spirit’s moving in other people’s lives.
Acts 10:44 states: “The Holy Ghost fell on all them which head the word.” Why don’t we see more of this happening our services today? Don’t we owe it to ourselves and our families to see our services divinely interrupted by the same Holy Spirit? What is wrong with us that we have become complacent?
We sit in the same seats Sunday after Sunday, listening to the same sermons and singing, the same hymns or worship songs. Many have done this all their lives and never experienced a divine encounter with God. They have not witnessed any supernatural interruption by a prophetic word, a supernatural utterance of tongues, a divine healing, a demon cast out, or even an awesome overwhelming sense of the divine presence of God so that everyone falls to their knees.
We must bear in mind that Acts 10:44-46 was the FIRST service to a company Gentiles who were not even born again believers. To me, I think that whatever was good enough for the FIRST service to the Gentiles, should be good enough for every succeeding service down through the history of the church! Would you agree?
Throughout the Acts of the apostles and Paul’s letters to the churches, it is obvious that the Holy Spirit was very active (1 Corinthians, chapters 12 -14). In these chapters Paul gives understanding, correction, and order to those in the church who were experiencing these gifts. There would be no need for Paul’s instructions regarding the manifestations of the Holy Spirit in most of our churches today because there is no room for Him to move, nor is there any desire or expectation for Him to move.
Are we really saying, “Holy Spirit, we don’t really need or want You to move in our services for we can manage very well without You. Thank you all the same”? I certainly hope not. And I mean that with all my heart.
Holy Spirit-filled parents want their children to be filled with the Holy Spirit. In this hour of our history, we need the Holy Spirit to fall again upon all those who hear the word, especially our children.
To be continued.
That “healing is the children’s bread” is the obvious conclusion to Matthew 15:26. The Gentile woman only got the crumbs and yet her daughter was healed.
Why would we offer our children food that has very little goodness in it? And yet we do it every day? Most of breakfast cereals are filled with dangerous sugars and are highly processed junk food. No wonder we are as sick as almost any nation on earth and our hospitals and medical clinics are packed to overflowing. I read the other day that even two slices of wheat toast are equal to taking two teaspoons of sugar and will make us fatter than ever.
The same thing happens in most of our church services. We enjoy the lifeless, sugar-coated, devitalized liturgical sermons that appeal to our dumbed-down spiritual senses. We are contented with a “form of godliness, but deny the power thereof” (2 Timothy 2:5). The rest of the Scriptures says: “From such turn away.”
We owe it to our children to do better than this. When we have the real bread, there will be healing. There will be life. There will be power to transform. If your place of worship does not feed you and your family with living bread, make sure you have it in your homes--evening and morning devotions.
We are not in the same position as the Canaanite woman who had no legal claim to Christ who was the healing bread. Thank God, we are now, by His grace, adopted into sonship and have every legal claim to His living bread.
What will it take to engage our young families today?
A more business-like approach? A more dignified approach? A more grandiose building?
Matthew 12:22, 33: “Then was brought unto him one possessed with a devil, blind, and dumb: and he healed him, insomuch that the blind and dumb both spake and saw. And all the people were AMAZED, and said, Is not this the son of David?”
Mark 1:25-27: “And Jesus rebuked him, saying, hold thy peace, and come out of him. And when the unclean spirit had torn him, and cried with a loud voice, he came out of him. And they were all AMAZED, insomuch that they questioned among themselves say, what thing is this? What new doctrine is this? For with authority commendeth he even the unclean spirits, and they do obey him.”
Mark 2:11, 12: “I say unto thee, Arise, and take up thy bed, and go thy way into thine house. And immediately he arose, took up the bed, and went forth before them all; insomuch that they were all AMAZED, and glorified God, saying, we never saw it on this fashion.”
Mark 6:51: “And he went up unto them into the ship; and the wind ceased: and they were sore AMAZED in themselves BEYOND MEASURE, and wondered.”
Mark 9:15: “And straightway all the people, when they behold him, were GREATLY AMAZED, and running to him saluted him.”
Acts 2:7: “And they were all AMAZED AND MARVELED, saying one to another, Behold, are not all these which speak Galileans?” This happened after the disciples “were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance” (v. 4).
Acts 2:12: “And they were all AMAZED and were in doubt, saying one to another, What meaneth this?”
Acts 9:21: “But all that heard Paul were AMAZED, and said; Is not this he that destroyed them which called on this name in Jerusalem?”
Why have I listed these Scriptures? Because it high time for our nation and the families of this generation to be amazed again. Eloquence and oratory have no power to transform and amaze lives.
Paul confessed in 1 Corinthians 2:4: “And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power.” Only this will amaze.
The truth is that our God has not changed. Jesus Christ is still the same yesterday, and today, and forever” (Hebrews 13:8).
Changing the décor will not cut it. Serving coffee and doughnuts will not keep it alive either.
Just this morning I heard that the numbers of the Southern Baptist have dropped from 19 million to 15 million and that increasing numbers of their smaller churches are closing. The missionary force has also drastically dropped in recent years. I for one, cannot help but be concerned about this. I am not a Southern Baptist by membership. However, I certainly uphold their solid teaching of the Bible. I thank God for their stand against abortion, the gay agenda, and their godly influence for righteousness in the nation--morally, spiritually, and politically. Their missionary influence upon the nations has been enormous. Why are they, and many other churches, dropping numbers?
I believe our young families have a desire to see more life in the churches they attend. They’re not all attracted to dead, dry, traditional formalism. They are not attracted to legalistic, heavy, stoogy doctrinal teaching that has no life and power to edify or save. Young families would rather be where people are being filled with the Holy Spirit, set free, healed from their bondages, and filled with the holy fire that comes down from heaven. Young families want to feel the presence of God. They want to attend a church or gathering where the atmosphere is pulsating with the power and love of God. Young couples, along with their children, are starving for the reality of the truth. They want their children to tune into heaven and turn on to the real power of God.
They want to be amongst others who are on fire and who are enthusiastic for truth. They want to be amongst others, be they young or old, whose hearts are beating with the love of God and who do not want to stop rejoicing and worshipping God.
Gone are the days of short-winded services that barely last an hour. Stiff, starchy time frames are not for those who like Mary, want to sit at Jesus’ feet and love on Him. We want to be in a church where God is moving so powerfully that no one wants to leave.
In Acts 2:17-18 says: “And it shall happen in the last days, saith God I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dram dreams: And on my servants and on my handmaidens, I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy.”
May I suggest there is something wrong with our 21st century Christianity if parents do not have a vision for their sons and daughters to be filled with the Holy Spirit to see visions, to prophesy, and to experience miraculous manifestations of the Holy Spirit happening in and through their lives. Because young people are drawn towards the supernatural, if we do not teach them and open their understanding to the importance of being filled with the Holy Spirit to experience the miraculous in their lives, we run the risk of them delving into all types of divination and modern witchcraft which abounds everywhere.
Christian parents, we do not want our children to grow up in so-called Christian homes where we have a “form of godliness, but deny the power thereof” (2 Timothy 3:5). Our children deserve much more than dead, dry, Biblical doctrine that has no presence of God accompanying it.
Each one of our children need to see that our God still opens the eyes of the blind and causes the deaf to hear. They have a right to see that our God still heals the sick and performs miracles, signs, and wonders. He still raises the dead and sets the captives free.
Our children need to know what it means to be filled with the Holy Spirit. Jesus Christ is still the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrew 13:8). We owe it to our children for them to see these things happening before their own eyes. How can they possibly stand before the intellectual atheism of this age if they do not experience a real encounter with the miraculous power of our God?
The following is the FERRAR FENTON BIBLE translation of Psalm 127:
If the LORD builds not the House,
In the vain the builders strive;
If the LORD watch not the Tower,
In vain the Watchman guards.
In vain for you to rise at dawn,
And late to go to rest,
And eat of carefulness the bread,
When He gives His darlings sleep.
See! Children are the LORD’S estate,
The body’s sweetest fruits;
Like arrows in a giant’s hand,
Are they, your youthful sons.
The man is blest who has with them,
Filled up his quiver full,
He will not shame when he may meet,
His foemen in the Gate.
I begin this new series today.
One of the most important roles a man can have is to be a father. Better still, to be an anointed father.
Leonard Ravenhill said: “In all thy getting, get unction.” Unction is another word for anointing. Perhaps we have been wrong in primarily equating the anointing with preaching and certain music which moves us deep down in our hearts and spirits.
We read in the Scriptures that the original anointing oil was applied to the High Priest of Israel and to his sons who were set apart from the secular to serve the Lord in a religious sense. The kings of Israel were also anointed with olive oil and set apart to lead God’s people in a civil sense.
The anointing was often accompanied with divine wisdom, authority, and prophetic utterances. The anointing enabled the anointed to accomplish amazing and miraculous feats to overcome their enemies. The anointing brought God on the scene.
I believe that the Christian families of our nation need Holy Spirit-filled fathers to raise sons and daughters in the ways of God, especially in these challenging times.
To be continued.
It is true that we can give without loving, but we cannot love without giving. John 3:16 says: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
How you can give heart-felt love to your family and others who are part of your life?
1. Give your smiles of approval.
2. Lavish encouraging words.
3. Give sympathy.
4. Give advice and counsel.
5. Help and give support wherever possible.
6. Give fellowship, friendship, and time.
7. Give financial assistance when appropriate.
8. Organize trips and excursions (especially surprises!).
9. Give heart-felt affection.
10. Offer forgiveness freely.
11. Pray for your wife, children, and those who need your prayers.
12. Give your children good doses of God’s Word each day.
If God as a father gave His very best for us because He wanted us to become His own special sons and daughters, how can we not be like Him in our fatherhood?
Painting: “Testing the Waters” by New Zealand artist, Barry Ross Smith.
Nancy and I are now back from the long trip to New Zealand and Australia. We had good meetings. The presence of the Lord was very rich and His anointing flowed through all the meetings. It was also a wonderful time to meet up with many relatives along the way. The love and hospitality shown to us was truly amazing.
We arrived home Thursday evening and the next day attended the “Teach them Diligently” Home School Curriculum Fair at the Opryland Hotel in Nashville, Tennessee. I enjoyed speaking at two excellent well-attended seminars on the 1st April which was my 77th birthday.
I praise the Lord that my fractured hip and pelvis have healed well. This happened nearly eight weeks ago when I felt outside a thrift warehouse where I deliver day old bread. Praise the Lord for His tender mercies that enabled me to leave my crutches at home and I managed to walk through the airports without assistance.
Tomorrow I will begin again to share with you the needed encouragement to men. The need is very great. Fatherlessness is America’s biggest social problem of epidemic proportions. Twenty million children in USA are without present fathers.
57.6 percent black children
31.2 percent Hispanic children, and
20.7 percent while children.
Plus, millions more who have fathers who are present, but ae not emotionally present.
Men, loving and giving are insuperable twins. You cannot love without giving, although you can give with loving. But that’s not the way it should be.
Love always motivates God’s giving. We all know John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” The words, “God SO LOVED the world” express the great motivating intensity of His love for the fallen world.
How can we say we love our children if we are not prepared to give to them loving smiles, loving time, loving conversation, loving interest, and even loving discipline? Proverbs 13:24 says: “He that spareth his rod hateth his son, but he that loveth him chasteneth hi quickly.”
John 3:35 says: “The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand” Even Jesus, the beloved Son, suffered the testings and disciplines of life (without sin) given to him by the loving hand of His Ever-loving Father.
To be continued.
Painting by Harry Anderson
Men, sons and daughters often have serious questions to ask their fathers, just as Isaac asked his father Abraham the whereabouts of the sacrificial lamb? But so often fathers are missing. They are doing their own thing, minding their own business, and attending to their own needs other than that of their children.
I once heard a prophetic utterance as I was about to return home from a men’s conference. The message came forth that the heavens are weeping over our nation’s children who are crying themselves to sleep because they have no fathers to answer their questions.
I am shocked and horrified at how many children in our nation who do not have fathers present in their lives. The U.S. Census Bureau states in Fatherhood Data and Statistics that 24 million children, one out of every three, live without a biological father. These statistics are tragic!
Absent fathers have drastically weakened the nation. Fatherhood is an awesome responsibility. Failure to take up this challenge through lack of interest or selfish priorities reveals a great weakness of character that is not acceptable. In fact, if is plain irresponsible.
Marriage breakdown and divorce is also a main contributor to absent fatherhood. All children need loving, understanding, kind fathers who make every endeavor to be present and involved with their families. Every child is another link in the generational chain and parents must make every effort to make that generational link as strong as possible.
Painting: “Daddy Loves Me” by Jane Heinrichs
Men, one of the greatest responsibilities of good fatherhood is to be available to your children as much as possible. All children need the godly, stabilizing input and influence of their fathers, some more than others.
Please do not leave the overall responsibility of parental presence to your wife There are many times, even in the daily ministrations of family life, when things go wrong. I think most women tend to be more emotional than men. It’s not their fault. It’s just the way they are wired.
Most men react more rationally and calmer when a child has an accident or gets into trouble. I know that men cannot always be there because of working away from home, but when you get a lunch break or some time to take a break, please give your wife a call. Check up on what’s happening at home.
A husband’s reassuring voice of wisdom goes a long way to calm a wife’s frazzled nerves when things are not going well. When you are at home, be at home. In other words, be involved with your family as much as possible. I think it is possible for some men to be at home, but they might as well not be home. They shut themselves off from their family.
Genesis 22:7 says: “And Isaac spake unto Abraham his father and said, My father: and he said, here am I, my son. And he said, Behold the fire and the wood: but where is the lamb for burnt offering?” Like Isaac, there are many sons and daughters crying out, “My father, my father, where are you? Please answer me. I need your help and wisdom now.”
Fathers, when you are at home, make yourselves available. Even though you may have responsibilities to take care of, even at home, be ready to drop what you are doing to attend to the needy request of your own flesh and blood, your children.
Beware of being overly taken up with your smart phone, computer, favorite hobby, or self-interest. Remember, you are a father FIRST OF ALL. You are an honorable, attentive father. Fatherhood is a crown for your head. Put it on and wear it with godly pride. It is your privilege.
Painting: “Once, they were young” by Pascal Campion
Proverbs 31:10 (AMP) states that the virtuous woman is “Far more precious than jewels and her value is far above rubies or pearls.”
I am sure the same thing could be said of finding a virtuous man who is also of high value. A virtuous woman whose “price is far above rubies” is worthy of a virtuous man who will nourish, care, love, and protect her.
All fine jewelry is kept in a safe place where it is protected from thieves and destroyers, such as the Crown Jewels.
Sending one’s wife out of the protected environment of a godly home into the unprotected work place is not esteeming her value to be worth more than rubies. While your valuable treasures are kept in a bank vault or in a strong steel case with an expensive lock, your most treasured and loved wife is placed in a work environment of sleazy, flirtatious predators. This does not make sense to me.
No wonder our homes are falling apart and our treasures are thrown to the wind. If you regard your daughters as crown jewels, you will also protect them from the wolves of the work place or crazy colleges.
Father, you have a divine responsibility to protect your living gem stones.
Psalm 103:13: “As a father pities his children, so the LORD pities them that fear him.”
Although it is innately in young children to honor their fathers and mothers, this God-given instinct must be nurtured, encouraged, and developed by loving, sensitive parents. Mothers are more likely to be softer and understanding of the child’s feelings and needs than fathers.
However, because they are more masculine in their ways, fathers must constantly remember they are not coaching a football or basketball team that needs knocking into shape. Nor are they army sergeants bulldozing new recruits into shape. Army drill sergeants and football/basketball coaches are often mean-spirited and aggressively controlling in order to produce a winning team.
This is not the way we raise our children, who are our own flesh and blood, into the image of God. Our children need to know that we love them, not only by our words, but even more importantly, by our actions and attitudes.
Years ago, I had the opportunity to meet the head Chaplin of one of the Los Angeles prisons for men. He told me the successful story in getting male prisoners to send Mother’s Day cards (provided free by Hallmark) to their mother on Mother’s Day.
Because it was such a huge success the prison authorities decided to provide Father’s Day cards for the inmates to send to their fathers on Father’s Day. All the men at the prison received a card to send to their fathers, courtesy of Hallmark. Sad to say, it was a complete failure. No one seemed to have any high enough esteem to send their fathers a Father’s Day card. How very sad, and yet what a revealing indictment regarding the failure of fatherhood in each one of those prisoner’s lives.
In many ways, one could conclude that one of the main reasons for their sons being I prison was the failure of their fathers to be loving, encouraging fathers. Conversely, how wonderful it is to hear sons and daughters speak highly of their fathers.
How children love to hear their father telling them stories, especially stories he makes up!
Most every night when they’re in bed,
And both their little prayers have said,
They shout for me to come upstairs,
And tell them tales of grizzly bears,
And Indians and gypsies bold,
And eagles with the claws that hold
A baby’s weight, and fairy sprites
That roam the woods on starry nights.
And I must illustrate these tales,
Must imitate the northern gales
That toss the Indian’s canoe,
And show the way he paddles, too.
If in the story comes a bear,
I have to pause and sniff the air
And show the way he climbs the trees
To steal the honey from the bees.
And then I buzz like angry bees
And sting him on the nose and knees
And howl in pain, till mother cries;
“That pair will never shut their eyes,
While all that noise up there you make;
You’re simply keeping them awake.”
And then they whisper: “Just one more,”
And once again I’m forced to roar.
New stories every night they ask,
And that is not an easy task;
I have to be so many things;
The frog that croaks, the lard that sings,
The cunning fox, the frightened hen;
But just last night they stumped me, when
They wanted me to twist and squirm
And imitate an angleworm.
At last they tumbled off to sleep,
And softly from their room I creep
And brush and comb the shock of hair
I tossed about to be a bear.
Then mother says: “Well, I should say
You’re just as much a child as they.”
But you can bet I’ll not resign
That story-telling job of mine.
By Edgar A. Guest
Fatherhood is an HONORABLE estate.
Painting by Daniel Rodgers - "Learning to Ride"
Fathers should seek a close relationship with each of their children. Even though there may be times when this relationship can be challenged through deliberate rebellion or foolish, headstrong wills and opinions, a righteous father will always endeavor to BUILD BRIDGES to restore the broken relationship.
Building a close relationship takes time, persistence, and self-sacrifice. Each one of our children should know, without any doubt, that we are for them, even if we may not be able to agree with them.
Some may ask: in what way, should our children know we are for them if what they are doing is sinful and contrary to godly parental standards?
• They need to be assured that no matter what, we will continue to love them even though we do not love their sin. We are for them in that we constantly pray for their repentance.
• They need to know that we are for them being set free from the devil’s slavery and bondage.
• They need to know that even though we cannot put a roof over their rebellion when they are old enough to live away from us, they will always be welcome to come home when they repent.
• They need to know that we will never hold their sinful past against them when they desire restoration based on repentance.
The Father God reassured His children, Israel, with this truth repeatedly through the Scriptures. Even though our heavenly Father was constantly driven to anger and had to apply righteous discipline, His anger was always quickly appeased at the first instance of repentance.
Read 1 Kings 21:27-29 and Psalm 78:31-72.