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.
Nancy Campbell is an internationally known author, speaker, and authority on Biblical Motherhood and Family.
Called to the encouragement and lifting up of wives, mothers, and women throughout the world as Director of the Above Rubies Ministry, she is the author of 6 books, as well as, numerous teaching CDs and several DVD's.
As author and publisher of the Above Rubies Magazine with a circulation of over 130.000 issues per printing, this wonderful magazine is provided at no-cost to subscribers in over 100 countries around the world.
Ministering to wives, mothers, and women with Godly counsel and encouragement, this magazine is a God-send to many. Nancy often speaks at numerous women's seminars and retreats throughout the year also.
Believing God’s plan for mothers is "building godly generations", she seeks to impart God’s truth to the next generation and their children too.
Nancy invites you to study all of the materials offered and to thoroughly comb the website for articles and stories that will encourage, motivate and build up your desire to fulfill God's plan for your life.
Let’s look at another picture of motherhood today. Psalm 113:9 says: “He maketh the barren woman to keep house, and to be a joyful mother of children. Praise ye the Lord.”
The phrase “to keep house” is the same Hebrew word we have been talking about, “yashab.” Do you remember what it means? To marry, to dwell in a family with children, to sit down, to settle, to abide, to remain, to continue.”
I love the CEB translation of this Scripture: “God NESTS the once barren woman at home—now a joyful mother of children.” To nest in a home means to settle in. To make a snug abode, a sweet resting place. A nest is a place to rear young such as a bird with her nestlings. Why are baby birds called nestlings? Because the mother nurtures them in a nest where it is safe and secure.
Our babies and young children are also little nestlings. God intends them to be nurtured in the home, not in daycares. And therefore, we make our home a safe nest.
We cannot be a nester if we are not in the home. We work in our home. We mother in our home. We nurture in our home. We love our nest.
Did you notice that this Scripture ends with the exclamation, “Praise ye the Lord”? What is your response to nesting in the home? A sigh and a groan or the bold exclamation, “Praise ye the Lord”?
Can I hear you say it aloud? Come on, say it with me, “Praise ye the Lord.”
Have a blessed day in your home today,
Yesterday we talked about how God wants us to settle in our homes (Hosea 11:11). The ESV and some other translations give another thought to this Scripture: “I will RETURN them to their homes, declares the Lord.” In other words, when we get away from our homes, God wants to return us back to our homes for this is where He has placed us.
The picture God gives of a blessed family is of the wife in the heart of her home with all her children sitting around the table (Psalm 128:3). If we read the Scriptures and hearken to God’s voice, we will voluntarily return to the home.
However, in this passage God had to use might to get the people back to their homes. Hosea 11:10, 11 says: “He will roar like a lion: when he roars his children shall come trembling from the west, they shall come trembling like birds from Egypt and like doves from the land of Assyria, and I will RETURN them to their homes, declares the LORD.” I hope God doesn’t have to ROAR to get our attention to draw us back!
We get a little more understanding how God feels about this when we read Micah 2:9: “The women of my people have ye cast out from their pleasant houses; from their children have ye taken away my glory forever.” God was angry because the women were forced from their homes. Is God angry at the voices of humanism and feminism which coerce and draw women out of their homes where God has placed them? God called them “pleasant” homes. The word means “delightful.”
However, God was not only angry that the mothers were taken from their homes. He was angry because the children were taken from their homes! God calls the inheritance of children being raised in the home “my glory.” We better tread carefully about what we do with what God calls His “glory.”
The HCSB translation says: “You take my blessing from their children forever.”
AMP: “You take away my splendor and blessing forever (by putting them among pagans, away from Me.)” Wow, those are powerful words. God says that when children are taken out of the home to be cared for by pagans who don’t love and worship Him that they are taken away from Him. He wants children to be raised in His presence, in His truth, in the sacred atmosphere in the home of godly parents. How much do we revere God’s Word? I feel the fear of God in my heart when I read these words.
NLT: “And forever stripped their children of all that God would give them.”
NET: “You defraud their children of their prized inheritance.” God says it is children’s inheritance to be raised in the home.
May you and your precious children be blessed with all the blessings of God in your home today.
More to come.
Love from Nancy Campbell
Painting: “The Family Album” by Charles Edouard Frere.
Are you nestled in your home? God wants you to nest, rest, and invest in your home. He made the home for you. He created the home for you to raise your children. Before God created Eve, He first prepared the home for her. When she woke up to life, she was in her delightful home of Eden. Adam had already been created before the home, but not the woman!
Whenever God talks about the home, he invariably uses the Hebrew word “yashab.” It means “to sit down, to dwell, to remain, to settle, to continue, to abide, to keep house.” That doesn’t sound like gadding about everywhere, does it? Interestingly, the Geneva Bible of Titus 2:5 where it tells us to be “keepers at home” describes this phrase as “not gadding up and down.”
In Hosea 11:11 God uses the word “yashab” and says: “I will settle them in their own homes, declares the LORD.” Are you settled and nestled?
The KNOX translation says: “In in their own home, the Lord says, I will give them rest.” Are you feeling overwhelmed? Are you running ragged? Too much to do? God always has the answer. Stop running around so much. Come back home. In your own home God gives you rest.
It’s not only we who get tense and stressed out. Our children do too. When we hustle them around to go to this place and that they also get restless and upset. Did you notice one of the meanings of “yashab” is to “sit down.” Even in the home we can be so busy running around that we don’t take time to SIT DOWN with our children.
Children need mothers to SIT DOWN! When your little ones get out of control, instead of screaming and feeling you are going crazy, stop what you are doing and say, “Come, let’s sit on the sofa and have a story.” Grab your baby to nurse and gather your little ones all around you and read some stories to them until they are all relaxed and settled. They will then be ready to play happily again. I did this many times a day. There’s nothing like sitting down with your little ones to bring peace and calm. And you become calm in the process too.
Take time to sit with your older ones to talk to them too. You mother much better sitting down than running around the house doing all your own projects! Remember, you are a mother before everything else you do. This is your highest priority.
More to come tomorrow.
Love and blessings from Nancy Campbell
Photo: With my grandchildren, Shepherd, Breeze, and Haven Allison and Saber Johnson and Sargie the dog.
In the post below, WHAT DOES YOUR HUSBAND WANT MOST, some ask the question, “How can we practically show honor to our husbands?” In case you didn’t get time to read the thread, here are some good answers from wives:
* Allow your husband to decide things.
* Ask his advice.
* Thank him for earning money/working hard.
* Praise his good points instead of focusing on the not so good.
* Think of specific things about him that you're thankful for.
* Don't undermine him.
* Cook him his favorite food.
* Talk respectfully about him to others.
* Think of all the good things he does and focus your thoughts on them, then your thoughts will turn into respectful words and actions.
* Stop always telling him your "better way of doing things.”
* Listen without talking. Let him finish talking without interrupting.
One mother of eight children shared that her husband is disappointed in her because she finds it difficult to keep the house in order and he feels dishonored. I am sure many find this a problem.
It is important to train your children to help. When you have eight children, you have children who are getting older and quite capable of helping in the home. When I was raising our children, the house would often get in a real mess during the day. However, before my husband came home, we would always have a clean-up. I called it the ONE, TWO, THREE.
About half an hour before Daddy came home I would stop everything we were doing and say, "It's time to clean up. Let's have a ONE, TWO, THREE." I would get all the children excited and motivated and I'd say, "ONE, TWO, THREE, LET’S GO!” We would all rush around getting rid of everything in sight! There’s supposed to be a place for each item, but if there’s not time, have a place where everything can be thrown out of site! Then, when Daddy comes in, he can walk into the place! And everything looks clean and tidy. (Don’t tell him what is behind the scenes!)
And make sure the dinner is ready for him. It shows you honor him when you have the supper ready for him when he walks in the door. And he can smell the lovely aroma of the food cooking!
Love from Nancy
One of the most important attitudes we can have in our life is a "returning spirit." Jeremiah 5:3 tells us about the children of Israel who "refused to return" which invoked the judgment of God.
I want to have a "returning spirit" in my heart, don’t you? Returning back to God when I grieve the Holy Spirit, returning back to God's plumbline of truth when I get into deception, and returning back to a soft and tender spirit when my heart becomes hard.
Not only should I have a "returning spirit" toward the Lord, but also toward my husband--returning to a soft a sweet spirit when I become haughty and independent and returning to a submissive spirit when I would rather do my own thing. One of the secrets of a harmonious marriage is to keep a "returning spirit."
"The spirit of returning" is the greatest need of the hour--returning to our first love, returning back to God's absolute truth and principles, returning back to the radical lifestyle of the early church, and turning away from our mediocre, middle-of-the-road, complacent, flesh-pampering, and world-loving spirit.
God leaves us with an amazing promise in the last verse of the Old Testament, "He shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse" (Malachi 4:6).
The Hebrew word for “turn” is “shuv” and is translated "turn" 80 times and "return" 491 times. God's greatest longing is for a returning back to His heart for family, to see children as He sees them, and to embrace into our families the children He plans for us.
Let’s keep returning more and more to God’s ways,
It’s not so much what you say
As the manner in which you say it;
It’s not so much the language you use
As the tone in which you convey it.
“Come here” I said,
And the child cowered and wept.
“Come here,” I said—
He looked and smiled
And straight to my lap he crept.
Words may be mild and fair
And the tone may pierce like a dart;
Words may be soft as the summer air
But the tone may break my heart.
For words come from my mind
Grow by study and art—
But tone leaps from the inner self
Revealing the state of the heart.
Whether you know it or not,
Whether you mean or care,
Gentleness, kindness, love, and hate,
Envy, anger, are there.
Then, would you quarrels avoid
And peace and love rejoice?
Keep anger not only out of your words—
Keep it out of your voice.
As a woman, we long for love and security, but more than anything else, a man longs for RESPECT AND HONOR from his wife. It is a God-given instinct that we as wives need to understand. He will never be truly happy until he has it, but when he does, look out world! He will feel that he can face anything.
I'm sure not preaching to you, because I fail on this one, too. We can passionately love our husband, yet not show the respect and honor he needs. The Amplified Version of Ephesians 5:33 explains it very clearly, “Let the wife see that she respects and reverences her husband (that she notices him, regards him, honors him, prefers him, venerates, and esteems him; and that she defers to him, praises him, and loves and admires him exceedingly).” What a challenge.
Honor your husband with your words and the way you speak to him. Honor him with the way you look at him. Honor him for this is what you are meant to do.
Does your husband sit at the head of the table? Does he have his special chair? We show our honor in little practical things, too.
Be blessed in your home today,
To hold you, softy sleeping
So warm against my breast,
Is rich reward that keeps me
Both satisfied and blessed.
So long I waited for you,
Yet nothing could be told
How deeply you are cherished,
How sweet you are to hold.
~ La Leche League News
Kristin Eason, an Above Rubies reader sent in this poem:
The heart reveals itself in words, the truth to all exposed,
Which kingdom you are living for to others is disclosed.
Words of love and unity or words of hate and death
Are spoken in the presence of the One who gave you breath.
Each idle word in secret will one day be revealed,
The words you spoke in darkness will no longer be concealed.
Words of accusation against another brother,
Will quench the Holy Spirit when you criticize another.
If we hope to be shown mercy, merciful we now must be
For words are seeds we’ll harvest when we reach eternity.
By words we will be justified or we will be condemned,
For they reveal the inward part, the hidden heart within.
If the heart is right with God, our words will surely show,
His love and tender mercies from the mouth will overflow.
So keep your heart with diligence, take heed and contemplate,
Take time to reconsider before it is too late.
Unruly is the tongue of man before the heart’s reborn,
Submit to God, repent and turn, your sin lament and mourn.
The language made in heaven no tongue alone can learn,
But is put there by the Spirit when the heart from sin will turn.
A death to self--the only way to speak this language new,
With God all things are possible, He does what man can’t do.
Open up your mouth to see the health within your soul,
For you will quickly find to Whom you’ve given up control.
Light and dark both cannot dwell; one stays and one must leave.
Be sure your sin will find you out for words do not deceive.
Kristin’s children are Emma (16), Rylan (13), Ellie (8), Nathan (4), Elizabeth (1).
The morals of this world are going downhill,
Against God’s Holy Word and His divine will,
No longer black and white, it’s now mushy gray,
God’s eternal absolutes many shun today.
Will you stand against this tide when others are crumbling?
Will you stand on God’s Word when many are stumbling?
Will you stand against sin and the devil’s deceptions?
Making no excuses or subtle exceptions?
Never be intimidated, never be fooled…
Or your fire be cooled!
When there’s no justice and only confusion,
And God’s people are hiding their light in seclusion,
Will you rise up and be counted, open wide your mouth,
And proclaim God’s truth to the north and the south?
Will you be strong in the Lord and the power of His might?
Always standing up for that which is right?
Rich in discernment, wisdom never ignored,
And walking daily in the fear of the Lord?
When you are tyrannized, never cower…
Before the enemy never bow!
Will you stand the test when you are wronged and hurt?
When you are persecuted and treated like dirt?
Will you have backbone when the pressure comes on?
Or be a spineless jellyfish with purpose all gone?
Will you keep on standing if you’re the only one?
Lifting up the name of Jesus, God’s only Son?
Will you stand true now, holding on to the end?
No matter what it costs, God’s truth to defend!
Never be wimpy or crumble at the knees…
And the devil never appease!
~ Nancy Campbell
The above words go together. If we are untaught in the ways of God, we will be unstable. This is a challenge to us as mothers. Are we raising our children to be stable or unstable? To be strong and knowledgeable in the things of God or ignorant?
The answer depends on our motivation. Our children don’t become strong in God by hoping it will happen. We must be faithful to implant God’s word into their hearts and mouths—little by little, morning and evening. The great way to do this is to establish family Bible time in your home.
I know you hear me exhorting you about this so many times. Please don’t get tired of me. Did you know that a faithful teacher recaps, repeats, and reminds?
The above Scripture is found in 2 Peter 3:16 which reminds us that the untaught and unstable twist the Scriptures to their own destruction. Peter continues in verses 17, 18: “Ye therefore, beloved . . . beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own steadfastness. But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.”
Isn’t that a great challenge? We can think we are solid and steadfast in the Lord, but unless we keep in the Word and seeking God, we can fall from our own stability! What about our children? Let’s get them to that place of stability in God’s truth. And let’s keep them there, day by day, and constantly feeding them with the anointing and living truth of the Scriptures.
Truly, I am constantly amazed at how little most young people know of the Scriptures, even those who are raised in homeschooling families. They don’t know the Word! Do their parents not read the Word to them morning and evening? Are they not encouraged to have their own daily time in God’s Word also? If they are unlearned and untaught, they will not be stable.
Let’s raise stable children who will stand fast no matter what deception or calamity comes against them.
Be blessed today,
“God, please give me a husband
And children of my own
So I can be fulfilled in life
In setting up a home.
I’ll take good care to do it right
There’s nothing I won’t do
This is all I ask in life
Please Lord, make it true.”
In His time my prayer was answered
Though I was not aware
For I was caught in worldly things
In anxieties and cares.
And when there was a need at home
Where was I? I wasn’t there
No, I was out at work and you see
The need was greater there?
Then Jesus came and dwelt within
This wayward heart of mine
And showed me all the areas
That had gone wrong with time.
He showed me that my purpose here
Was as a steward for
He’d graciously given me
What I’d asked of Him, plus more.
What was I doing out at work?
He said He would provide
All my needs, my heart’s desires
He’d never leave my side.
“O thank You Lord for Your great love
That teaches us the way
You’ve set me free from worldly lust
And now there’s joy today.”
For at last I am fulfilled
As a mother and a wife
And I’m no longer drawn
To worries, anxieties and strife.
You see, I’ve left it all to Him
There’s just no other way
For me to be fulfilled in life
Is to know God’s Word and obey.
~ Val Stares, Gold Coast, Australia
The devil rarely changes his tactics. Obviously, he finds the ones he uses are effective. Back in the Bible days, he continually tempted the Israelites to become like the nations around them. He uses the same temptation today. Why are God's people lured to become like the world around them? It happens subtly. Even without trying we become absorbed into our humanist society. We think it is normal when it is totally abnormal according to the plumbline of God's word.
In 1 Samuel 8:5 we read how the children of Israel wanted a king: "Make us a king to judge us LIKE ALL THE NATIONS" they cried out. Samuel pleaded with them to not give into this temptation, but they would not listen. Verses 19, 20 say: "Nevertheless the people refused to obey the voice of Samuel; and they said, Nay; but we will have a king over us; that we also may BE LIKE ALL THE NATIONS."
I am astounded as I talk with church going people to find their lives are not very different from the world. They limit their families, put their children in day-care, and leave the home to go out into the corporate world. This is opposite to God's original plan.
Recently I talked with a feminist. She hotly disagreed with women embracing their role as mothers in the home. But I had to challenge her to look at the fruit of the feminist agenda. More and more divorce and fragmentation of family. She had no answer.
It's so easy to be sucked into the system of this world. We need to come continually to God's Word to be encouraged in the truth. I think it is a great idea for mothers to Read Psalm 127 and 128 about once a week. They are God's revelation for the family.
The question is: Is our family life closer to God's picture or the world's one?
I thought that the Queen of Sheba came to visit Solomon because of his fame, wisdom, and riches. However, I noticed in 1 Kings 10:1 that there was more to her curiosity. Let’s read what it really says: “And when the queen of Sheba heard of the fame of Solomon CONCERNING THE NAME OF THE LORD, she came to prove him with hard questions.”
Her biggest interest was because of the name of the Lord. We notice this again in 2 Chronicles 2:1, 4: “And Solomon determined to build a house FOR THE NAME OF THE LORD.” The name of the Lord was Solomon’s passion.
What is your passion as you build your home? Is it to have the most beautiful décor? Or do you want your home to be a home where the name of the Lord is honored, uplifted, and magnified? In every room. In every life. In the atmosphere.
The name of the Lord is so powerful. All God’s attributes are revealed in His names. May we seek to know His name and acknowledge His name in our home. May our children be in awe of His name. May people around know that our home belongs to the name of the Lord.
Through the name of Jesus, we can defeat the devil, have power over temptation, and receive answers to prayer. We are more than conquerors through His name. His name is a strong tower into which we can run.
Does the fame of His name go out from your home to your neighborhood? Is this your passion? To build a home to honor the name of the Lord?
Blessings to your home today,
Isn’t it a blessing to pray with a friend? Someone who carries the same vision as you? Jesus said in Matthew 18:20: “For where TWO or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.”
Of course, when you are married you are blessed to lay claim to this promise. I think this is one of the most powerful things about marriage. Do you make the most of it? Do you pray with your husband daily? To neglect this latent power is a real tragedy. What great things can happen when husbands and wives pray together. Matthew 18:19 says: “If TWO OF YOU SHALL AGREE ON EARTH as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven.”
I love to pray with my husband each. We love to pray for our children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren together. We also have prayer together with others at our Family Devotions every morning and evening. And then at our weekly prayer meeting.
But I was also blessed to have prayer partners even before I was married. When I lived in New Zealand, my dear friend, Pam, and I were both school teachers in different cities. We used to get together for all our vacations to seek the Lord and pray. Not many friends love to get together to pray, do they? But that’s what we loved to do more than anything else.
And we still love to do this even though we live on the other side of the world from one another. Whenever I fly back to New Zealand my first port of call is to visit my friend, Pam. She meets me at the airport, we go to her home in Auckland, then straight to her little prayer room, get on our knees, and pray. Oh, what rich times. We pray for our children most of all. Then we pray for the nations. Our friendship of about 57 years is connected through prayer.
Do you have a prayer friend? Well, if you are married, your husband will be your first prayer friend. But it’s good to have other prayer friends too. Ask your friends to pray with you.
Love from Nancy Campbell
Slow down, Mummy, there's no need to rush,
Slow down, Mummy, what is all the fuss?
Slow down, Mummy, make yourself a cup of tea,
Slow down, Mummy, come and spend some time with me.
Slow down, Mummy, let's put on boots and go for a walk,
Let's kick piles of leaves, and smile, and laugh, and talk,
Slow down, Mummy, you are looking very tired,
Come, sit and snuggle and rest with me a while.
Slow down, Mummy, those dirty dishes can wait,
Slow down, Mummy, let's have fun and bake a cake!
Slow down, Mummy, I know you work a lot,
But sometimes, Mummy, it's nice when you just stop.
Sit with us a minute and listen to our day,
Spend a cherished moment,
Because our childhood will not stay!
~ Rebekah Knight (c) 2011
When a new baby is born and we take this precious life into our arms, we are not only overcome with awe and delight, but the enormity of the task that lies ahead. We are responsible to keep this little life alive. We must nurse, nourish, love, protect, and train this child until they one day leave our home. Even then, we never stop praying for them. Even then, their trials and challenges are still our concerns.
I remember when Serene's oldest son was born. A few days after birth he came down with RSV and we had to rush him to the hospital. As baby Arden was turning blue, Sam, the new father, perplexingly asked, "How do we keep them alive?"
However, it is not only caring for a new life. Mothers bear the weight of managing a home and family. It's not like other careers where you clock in and out at a certain time. We feel this weight upon us continually.
Sir Winston Churchill once said, "The price of greatness is responsibility." Yes, you have great responsibility dear, mother, but because your career is great, not because it is insignificant.
Don't try to minimize the greatness of your career and do it on the sideline. Embrace it fully. Embrace the responsibility. Motherhood is the greatest and most influential career given to women.
Blessings to you today,