Above Rubies Daily Encouragement Blogs

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It is most important that we as husbands and fathers seek the mind of the Lord regarding how we should vote so we can influence our families.

ANSWERING THE BIG QUESTION
BY: Dr. Jim Garlow / Skyline Church, San Diego

I have been asked "the question" so many times regarding Trump or Hillary. By way of background, I have followed every national convention—Republican and Democrat—from the time I was age 9, and have attended most of the GOP Conventions from 1984 to the present. I have watched the news virtually every day from the age of 8. I have never seen anything like what we are observing.

In spite of the unprecedented nature of this election cycle, I will attempt to respond to "the question." I am not demanding that anyone else share my view. But I was asked. Here is my best attempt to answer as I am able to see things at this time:

1. The Democratic and Republican party platforms are as different as night and day, in my opinion, as far apart as evil vs.good.

The 51-page Democratic platform is the most leftist ever.(I don't care for the "right vs. left" nomenclature. I am far more concerned with "right vs. wrong.") The Democratic platform contains many points which are anti-biblical. (Time does not permit me here to identify what is meant by "anti-biblical," which is covered in my new book Well Versed: Biblical Answers to Today's Tough Issues.)
It is thoroughly socialistic (a socialist is a communist without a gun).

The 54-page GOP platform is one of the strongest GOP platforms ever. A biblically alert person could be comfortable with almost all of it. Party platforms are a big issue to me. Although some "blow off" party platforms, I do not. Nor do many people up and down the ballot who are running for office. This is a serious and very important item. I have a hard copy of both platforms in front of me now. Most people have never checked out what the party platforms say. They should. If a person is not drawn to the "top-of-the-ballot" candidate, they ought to at least consider voting for the candidate attached to the best party platform.

2. Analogy #1: Both candidates are flawed. We all know that, but permit me an analogy: As a pastor, I would rather deal with a church attendee who is blatant and brash in his sinning than one who is devious, lying, cunning, and deceptive. Both are problematic, but one is easier to deal with than the other. If I were a pastor bringing correction to a parishioner, I would prefer dealing with a "Trump-type" any day over a "Hillary-type." The chances of making progress with the "Trump-type" is many times greater than the "Hillary-type."

3. Analogy #2: When my (late) wife's remarkable and much loved oncologist said, "Don't take Carol to that alternative (non FDA approved) treatment." I asked, "Why not?" He said, "The unknown." I said, "Doctor, your 'known' is much worse than the alternative treatment's 'unknown.'" (I took her to that alternative treatment. One year later that same oncologist went to the alternative treatment doctor to see how it was that Carol had improved so much. While this alternative treatment did not ultimately save her life, it likely stretched two to three years of life to six years of life—by the admission of another one of her brilliant young oncologists who later said, "Without any medical training or scientific fact, you have put together a protocol of treatment that has moved her into the top fraction of 1 percent of survival rates of all patients with Carol's particular cancer). Application of the analogy: Hillary's "known" is considerably worse—many times over—than Trump's "unknown."

4. Trump has lots of sins in his past (actually, we all do), and—in the present—says things he should not say. I make no attempt to defend any of the things he has said. There is no need to rehash the wrong things he has said. We know what they are. He should not have thought or said them. But there is no need to rehash them here, so we won't. But let's turn to the other candidate. Although America has had some scandal-ridden candidates in its history, we have never seen any one major party candidate more constantly scandalous as Hillary (along with her husband). She seems to exceed all previous boundaries for wrongdoing. The scandals just don't stop. In the same way we did not take time to list all of Trump's misstatements, neither will we here rehash the seemingly continuous string of horrific scandals of the Clintons.

5. Trump is slowly being surrounded by increasingly good people. From time to time, I receive encouraging calls regarding this. Can these good people impact Trump? We will see. In contrast, I see no reason for any encouragement regarding the people who surround Hillary.

6. Trump is right on approximately 75 percent of the issues. I wish it was 100 percent. It is not. I am in hopes that those beginning to surround him can help him connect the dots on more issues. Hillary is wrong on 100 percent of the issues.

7. This next issue might be one of the most important, but I suspect few will understand its significance. Trump opposes globalism. Hillary thrives on it. Globalism is far more than "geographical" or "eliminating national borders and boundaries." It is spiritual, that is, demonic at its core. Few—very few—understand this. This is quite likely one of the main reasons why Trump is hated. Do your homework on this one. Think "principalities and powers." Serious, EXTREMELY serious.

8. Not voting is not a viable option, contrary to what the "purists" claim. It is not my intention to begin a war of the issue. I know that some radically disagree with this. My view? They have the right to be wrong.

9. Voting for a third party candidate is—regardless of what is said—a complete "throw-away." No third party candidate will be elected, or even come remotely close to being elected. And yes, that matters to me. And for the record, the Libertarian ticket—Johnson and Weld—is nearly as bad on many issues as Hillary. When I listen to them, I am stunned people of their ability have ever made it to elective office.

10. Trump has moved pro-life. Hillary is pro-baby killing, and prides herself on that, and honors the organization—Planned Parenthood—that actually traffics human parts from dead babies whom they have killed. This is below anything we have seen since Nazi Germany . The gall of Hillary! The Clintons have evaded justice for decades and likely will continue to. But they will someday stand before the Great White Throne. They will have to give account of their support of the ripping babies to shreds in the womb. For the record, those who vote for those who support the genocide of pre-borns will also have to give an account.

11. Trump wants to defend the nation (which is the purpose of government). Hillary has a horrific track record as Secretary of State, and due to hundreds of millions of dollars given to her and her husband's foundation, she is beholden to those who want us dead.

12. Hillary claims "everything is fine" in America. This defies every single fact, but facts have never been an interest of Hillary's. Trump understands that it is 11:59 p.m. on the "cultural clock." America is near the end—morally, economically, militarily and, sadly, spiritually. There are very clear identifiable indicators—measurable ones—that America is no longer the world's leading power. That day is over. Hillary will hasten the final destruction. Trump could either slow that down—or possibly, with God's help—reverse it... Maybe.

13. Trump will address the massive government spending. Hillary will expand it above the existing unsustainable debt the U.S. currently is carrying (almost $20 trillion plus unfunded liabilities to Social Security, etc).

14. Trump will expose—and I pray, bring down—"the systemic evil" (crony, deceitful, misuse of capitalism) that reigns among many high-dollar lobbyists. Hillary thrives because of them.

15. Trump will stop the massive overreach of government. Hillary will extend it.

16. Freedoms come in "threes." Political freedom, economic freedom, and religious liberty coexist together. Take one away and the other two will eventually disappear. One cannot exist without the other two. The genius of America is that it had all three, until recently. Trump fully grasps the loss of religious liberty. I have heard him speak on it in person on several occasions. He knows that economic and political freedoms are evaporating. He will reverse that. Hillary will decimate all three.

17. Every rational person knows the Supreme Court appointments are paramount. Trump has listed 11 superb potential nominees. Hillary's appointments would snuff out the tiny vestige of the three freedoms that are left (mentioned in the statement above).

18. I make no excuse for wrongdoing or wrongful, hurtful words from either candidate. Candidly, I want King Jesus. He rules in my heart. And yours too, I suspect. And I want him to rule here—now. But that day is not fully manifested—yet. In the meantime, we prayerfully, carefully navigate this challenging election season, with great concern that above all, we honor our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in every arena of our lives, including the voting booth.

That is my hope. It is yours as well.

Dr. Jim Garlow is pastor of Skyline Church in San Diego . He is also co-founder of The Jefferson Gathering, a weekly worship service for members of Congress at the U.S. Capitol in Washington , D.C.

FYI: Skyline Church is a Wesleyan church in California.

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BeStrong2Even when it’s hard to be strong for ourselves, we must be strong for our children and others around us.

When Joab (the captain of King David’s army) faced a mighty battle with the Ammonites he said to his warriors: “Be of good courage, and let us play the men for our people, and for the cities of our God” (2 Samuel 10:12). The phrase “play the men” means “to be courageous, valiant, to conquer.” The word is used mostly in the context of battle.

Do you notice that Joab encouraged his men to be strong and courageous, not just for themselves, but “FOR OUR PEOPLE, AND FOR THE CITIES OF OUR GOD”?

God is with you, dear mother. Even when you feel week in yourself, you can call on God’s strength in the battle. He is with you. He is the One who gives you courage. And He gives you courage to be strong for your family.

I believe we are in a time when we not only have to be strong for our families, but for our cities, and our nation! We must stand strong for righteousness. We must stand strong for the life of the unborn. We must be courageous to oppose all evil, even in the face of ridicule.

We must be strong at this election time to vote for righteousness. In this coming election I am not voting FOR someone as much as I am voting AGAINST! Because I belong to the kingdom of God which is a kingdom of righteousness, a kingdom of light, and a kingdom of life, I must oppose all evil and everything that seeks to destroy life. I am not warring against flesh and blood but against principalities and powers.

Therefore, I will vote against the candidate who brashly believes that babies should be aborted even one day before they are born, because they are still in the womb. I am voting against the shutting down of the Christian voice in the nation and the candidate who believes that Christians and evangelicals will need to change their thinking to all that is unbiblical and against God.

Let’s be courageous in this hour, not just for ourselves, but for your children, our children’s children, and the destiny of this nation.

Blessings from Nancy Campbell

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PutOnNature

Ruth 3:9: “Spread therefore thy skirt over thine handmaid; for thou art a near kinsman.” The wedding garment of fine linen is composed of all the attributes and virtues that are in Christ Jesus. Each day and throughout our Christian walk we are to put them on.

Colossians 3:12-16 says: “PUT ON therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering; forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye. And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness. And let the peace of God rule your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body, and be ye thankful.”

However, before we put on all the virtues that make up the wedding garment, we must put off all the things that are part of the old, fallen nature. Colossians 3:5-9 says: “Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence and covetousness, which is idolatry: For which things’ sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience. In the which ye also walked some time, when ye lived in them. But now ye also PUT OFF all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth. Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have PUT OFF the old man.”

How is it possible to attend the Marriage Supper of the Lamb if the Lamb’s wife has not MADE HERSELF READY? The garments of the old life must be put off, not just covered over. The beautiful virtues of Christ are not given to us as a band aid to cover over the evils of the old satanic nature. We are to mortify (put to death) all that Christ has put to death on our behalf and instead wear His new nature.

Our life on this earth is a time of preparation. It is a time of making ourselves ready. It is time to put off the old nature with all its evil deeds and put on the new nature with all its beautiful virtues. This is what it means to put on Christ and cover ourselves with His garment of righteousness.

Ruth understood this when she put herself at the feet of Boaz, her kinsman redeemer.

Be encouraged.

Colin Campbell

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CornerstoneHomeThe other day I wrote a post, A MANLY THING, about young men being ready to take responsibility in marriage. I can’t leave out the young women. It’s important for them to be prepared also. As with the men, many young women today have rarely held a baby. They know nothing about motherhood or managing a home. They have spent most of their life at school, college, and even partying. They have not been prepared mentally for the embracing of children or establishing a home.

They fall in love and “eventually “get married, but have no thought of having children. That’s something in the far distant future. This is not God’s plan. The first words He spoke to the first married couple were “Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the earth.” If a couple are not ready to embrace children, they are not ready for marriage. They are still immature and irresponsible.

Wow, that’s a statement most people won’t like today.

They think they are responsible by waiting until they have “all their ducks in a row” and are financially successfully before they could have children. But that depends whether you are depending upon yourself or upon God. That depends whether you have a humanistic worldview or a biblical worldview.

The Bible tells us that when He sends a child, that He will provide. Of course, we don’t know when God will give us a baby. It’s not a given that it will happen right away. We don’t know whether God will give us only one or two or maybe ten, but that’s His prerogative. If we walk with the Lord, we walk by faith and trust in His absolute sovereignty. It comes down to this fact: we either trust in our own resources or in God’s sovereignty and His resources which never fail.

Plus, there is nothing like the addition of children to mature a young man and woman. They grow up overnight (unless they are steeped in deception and demanding their own way rather than yielding to the will of God).

Psalm 144:12 tells us that our daughters are to be like the cornerstones of a palace. A cornerstone is the one that forms the very foundation of a building. It is the mainstay. When our daughters marry and begin establishing a home, they are the very core, heart, backbone, and bedrock of the home. If they haven’t been trained to manage a home and embrace and care for children, how will they cope? Many times they don’t.

And if we don’t have mothers as the cornerstone of their homes, how will our homes become the strength of the nation? Godly homes are the strength and stability of a nation. Marriages and homes that are fragmented and falling apart weaken the nation.

Are you raising cornerstones?

Love from Nancy Campbell

Picture: Shelby and Josiah at their wedding rehearsal. Yes, they are both always holding babies, any time you see them, at their rehearsal, and even on their wedding day.

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WeddingRobesRevelation 19:8 says: “And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of the saints.”

Some translations render this word “righteousness” as “the righteous acts of the saints.” This wedding garment, which is described as “clean and white” is also a garment of righteousness. In the Strong’s Concordance, the word (134) means “equity of character or act.” This righteousness is that it is not a righteousness we have of our own, but rather the righteousness that is imputed or given to us through our relationship or acceptance of Jesus Christ into our hearts and lives.

We cannot have on the right wedding garment without clothing ourselves with Christ and His righteousness alone. 1 Corinthians 1:30 states: ¨But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption.” When we, by faith, accept Jesus Christ into our hearts and lives, we are provided with a garment of righteousness at the same time. However, this state of righteousness does not exclude acts of righteousness, but rather manifests itself with righteous acts.

Romans 10: 9, 10 tells us that believing is accompanied by speaking.

Psalm 116:10 and 2 Corinthians 4:13 both say: “I believed, and therefore have I spoken.” Speaking and testifying are the righteous belief of the heart put into action.

To be continued.

Be encouraged.

Colin Campbell

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MotherLeaderYou are not insignificant, dear mother. God has chosen you to lead your children into their destiny and all that God has planned for them. Rise up into your calling.

~ Nancy

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ManlyThingOn Sunday we enjoyed another family wedding—Josiah and Shelby. It is so wonderful to observe Josiah and his love for babies and children (he himself is the oldest of 11 children).

At their rehearsal Josiah and Shelby were both constantly holding babies. And on their wedding day, even though Josiah was enamored with his beautiful bride, he constantly sought out little babies to cuddle. During the speeches at the end of the day little Remmy (Serene’s baby) began crawling along the floor. I observed that immediately Josiah got down behind the chair and peeked out behind it to get Remmy’s eye and play with him. He can’t help himself.

During the bride and groom dance, Josiah’s little sister came and danced all around them and they loved it.

This is such a beautiful thing to me. And such a manly thing. So many young men today would not even have the time of day to notice a baby, especially on their wedding day. Sadly, they have been raised in a humanistic society that doesn’t embrace children. They don’t know anything about babies or raising children. They have been raised in two-child families where they have not had the privilege of little ones around them and don’t know how to relate to them.

Josiah and Shelby are a young couple. But they are ready. Josiah is ready to take on providing for his wife and a family as they come along. They are both ready to embrace family, and as soon as possible. This is true manhood. This is God’s plan from the very beginning of time. He didn’t intend men to amble along in their single estate for years and years. He purposes for men to get married, take on their manly responsibility, and embrace children.

Let’s raise sons who are real men.

Love from Nancy Campbell

Picture: Josiah cuddling Ezzie (Rashida’s baby) on his wedding day.

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RuleSpiritLoveThis last weekend it was my pleasure to perform another marriage ceremony for a wonderful Christian couple, Josiah and Shelby Calhoon.

I mentioned in my wedding message the passage of Matthew 22:11-14 where it speaks of the all-important requirement of having on the required wedding garment: “And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment: And he saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless. Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. For many are called, but few are chosen.”

The required garment is explained in Revelation 19:7-9: “Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honor to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints. And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called into the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God.”

The garment was to be made of fine linen, clean and white, which is the righteousness of saints. We are told throughout Scripture about the righteous garments that we should be making ready and clothing ourselves with in preparation for the Marriage Supper of the Lamb.

Revelation 17:14 says: “These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.” We discover that the garments must be washed in the blood of the Lamb. This explains Revelation 19:8 concerning the garments being clean and white. It is only the blood of Jesus, the Lamb of God who is able to accomplish this purity. We are exhorted in Scripture to “put on Christ” with all of His virtues.

Galatians 3:27: “For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.”

We cannot put on Christ as a garment without putting on all of His virtues. Jesus Christ, and all of His righteous virtues, are the fine linen garment.

We do not wait for the day of the wedding to cloth ourselves with Christ all His virtues. It is imperative to do it now. Many who call themselves Christian, and yet live like the world, are putting on the wrong garments. The garments represent the “life style.” If the life style looks like the world, smells like the world, and acts like the world, it most likely is the world.

On the great Wedding Day, the one who wears the world’s garments and not the garments washed in the blood will be bound and cast into outer darkness.

To be continued.

Be encouraged.

Colin Campbell

 

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HealingTongueWhat is your tongue like today? Lashing out at everyone? Griping about everything and everyone? God wants you to have a healing tongue in your home today. Proverbs 15:4 (TLV) says: “A healing tongue is a tree of life.”

I was most interested to read Young’s Literal Translation of this Scripture (the same Robert Young who compiled “Young's Analytical Concordance to the Bible”). This translation says: “A HEALED tongue is a tree of life, and perverseness in it –a breach in the spirit.” I love this. I think we all need our tongue to be HEALED, don’t we? It’s all very well to have a “healing tongue,” but our tongue needs to be healed before it can bring healing to those around us.

We need the purifying fire of the Holy Spirit to touch our lips each morning. Just like Isaiah when he saw the LORD and exclaimed, “Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips.” Then the seraphim took a coal from the altar and laid it on his mouth and said, “Lo, this hath touched thy lips; and thine iniquity is taken away, and thy sin purged” (Isaiah 6).

Let’s pray: “Dear Father God, please touch my lips with your holy fire today and heal them from all perverseness. I want to be a healing tongue in my home today to my husband and to my children. Amen.”

All God’s blessings,

Nancy Campbell

 

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BeautyWorshipIt is always fascinating to see twins, isn’t it? You can’t help looking at them, especially when they are identical. I myself had twins 51 years ago. A boy and a girl and they were so different that if people didn’t know, they didn’t recognize I had twins. But it was a great blessing. I used to say that there’s only one thing better than having a baby, and that’s having two babies!

However, did you know the Bible also has many twins? I love looking for them as I read God’s Word. You will immediately think of Mercy and Truth, Faith and Love, Righteousness and Peace etc.

Another set of twins are Beauty and Holiness. Holiness is beautiful and beauty should be clothed with holiness. In fact, most times these twins are mentioned in the context of clothing. Psalm 92:2 says: “Worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness.” It actually refers to the holy garments the priests wore when they worshipped and served the Lord. And also when they went out to battle (Psalm 110:3; 2 Chronicles 20:11; and Revelation 1:14).

God is a God of holiness and beauty. When He gave the design of the clothes for the high priest, God stated had to be made for “glory and for beauty” (Exodus 28:2).

It’s rather interesting that it refers to garments. God wants His people to dress beautifully because He loves beauty, but He also wants them to be holy. Remember, they are twins! Inseparable.

Why then do some women like to wear (sometimes even to church) low cut and short dresses? What message do they want to portray? It’s certainly not one of holiness, or even of beauty. We need to be reminded of who we are. We are called “The people of thy holiness” (Isaiah 63:18). We are called “The Holy People” (Isaiah 62:12). We are called “The holy seed” (Ezra 9:2). We are called “a holy nation” (1 Peter 2:9).

God’s temple was called the “holy and beautiful house” (Isaiah 64:11). You are now the temple of the Lord. You are His dwelling place and He wants you to be a holy and beautiful house for Him.

Let’s dress in a holy and beautiful manner.

Blessings to you today,

Nancy Campbell

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BlessedGiveRomans 5:5: “The love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.”

Men, we are told in the Scriptures to “love our neighbor as ourselves” (Matthew 19:19). Most people love themselves enough to ensure they eat sufficient food to satisfy their appetite. The same thing applies to sufficient clothing, a roof over their heads, as well as transport to get around. Most people love themselves enough to keep themselves healthy by having some form of medical insurance. It would be better if they loved themselves enough to eat life-giving, healthy foods. Most people also love themselves enough to make sure they have sufficient education and their appearance and conduct is fashionable and appropriate to the occasion.

However, there is something wrong with this type of love if it doesn’t reach any further than ourselves. Love that purely concentrates on self with all its own individual needs could hardly be called the love of God.

God’s love is giving, generous, kind, and benevolent. God’s love shed abroad in our hearts changes our selfish love into concern for the needs of others around us. God’s love is more than giving away our cast offs to the needy. God does not give his cast offs. God’s love shed aboard in our hearts motivates us to give things we actually need. This could be the giving of our valuable time or the giving of money we have saved up for some special vacation we want for ourselves.

The love of God is a very powerful, motivating force that causes us to love to give more than to love to receive. If we turned the Scripture around concerning loving our neighbor as much as we love ourselves to loving ourselves as much as we love our neighbors, most of us would be on poverty street.

If we are to rule our spirits the way God wants, we had better be filled with the Holy Spirit of love more than anything else.

Be encouraged.

Colin Campbell

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DutySlavesBe encouraged, today, dear mother. God sees your “labor of love” in your home and you will receive your eternal reward. You will hear the words of Jesus from Matthew 25:21: “Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.”

A question: what are the words you will hear from Jesus? “Well done, thou good and faithful SERVANT.” Did you pick up the word “servant”? Jesus will not say: “faithful leader,” “faithful church worker,” “faithful song leader,” “faithful teacher,” but “faithful servant”! Your reward in eternity comes from being a servant.

Be a joyful servant today.

Love from Nancy Campbell

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BarometerWhat’s the joy on your barometer today? A tiny bit of joy? Perhaps you’re half way up the barometer? Anyone up to the top and overflowing?

Psalm 16:11 says: “In thy presence is fullness of joy.” Fullness means up to the top and overflowing. How do you get to experience this amount of joy? Only one way. By living in His presence. It’s not according to Your circumstances or what trauma you face.

My daughter, Evangeline was sharing with us on Sunday how God challenged her about this. Her husband has been redoing their kitchen and renewing all the plumbing in their house. With ten children she has had no stove and no water for two and a half months! Can you be filled with joy in the midst of this? Not in the natural, but yes, as you live in the presence of the Lord.

If we have no joy, or only a tiny bit of joy, it’s because we live in the flesh. We are fixed on our problems instead. Dear mother, fix your eyes on the Lord today. Live in His presence, for it is an absolute face that in His presence is FULLNESS OF JOY.

Let’s look at some other translations:

NET: “I EXPERIENCE ABSOLUTE JOY in your presence.
CJB: “In your presence is UNBOUNDED JOY.”
CEB: “In your presence is TOTAL CELEBRATION.”
TLV: “ABUNDANCE OF JOYS are in your presence.”

It’s only in His presence. Jesus is filled with joy above everyone else and He lives in you (Hebrews 1:9)!

May you have a joy-filled day, Nancy Campbell

Picture: Evangeline on her recent vacation. She had just kayaked about six miles catching fish. Yes, this is on vacation, but she’s just the same at home with no stove and no water! She makes every day an adventure.

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ChooseBetterProverbs 4:23 says: “Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.” I love to find out what the words of a Scripture really mean. The phrase “with all diligence” in the Hebrew is most interesting. It uses a preposition meaning “above, beyond” and a noun meaning “prison, guard, the act of guarding.” It can be translated “more than all other guarding, guard your heart.”

I am interested in the use of the word “prison.” Most inmates in a prison want to get out; they want to escape. It’s much the same with our hearts. Sin, worldliness, “the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life,” want to escape the light of God shining in our hearts. They want to do their own thing. They want to be free.

Therefore, we must vigilantly guard our heart. We cannot be lenient. We must take strict measures to bring “every thought to the obedience of Christ” (2 Corinthians 5:10).

The Complete Jewish Bible says: “Above everything else, guard your heart for it is the source of life’s consequences.” The Hebrew means “the outgoings of life.”

As mothers, we cannot afford to let our hearts run away with us. We must keep pure hearts before the Lord. If we hold resentment, bitterness, unforgiveness, or just stay miserable towards our husband or any other person, it not only destroys our own soul, but affects each one of our children.

You cannot hide the attitude of your heart. It eventually affects the atmosphere of your home and the hearts of your children for good or for evil.

We guard our hearts, not only for our own sake but the for the sake of our children, children’s children, and beyond.

God bless you and your family today,

Nancy Campbell

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GiveMeHeartMen, if love is limited in our lives, it’s influence on others will be stinted. Love always does what is best for others, no matter what. The one who wrote the great hymn, “The Love of God” obviously had a greater understanding than most of this greatest of all attributes of God.

1 Corinthians 13 is a powerful barometer and check list of what is truly the love of God and what is not. Read it again. If our spirits are not under the control of the Holy Spirit of love, we cannot represent God in a true sense because “God is love.”

The truth is that all God is and all He does, even in times of judgment and discipline, is motivated by a measureless love. Some may question God’s love when it comes to discipline and judgment. However, the Scripture is clear when it likens God’s discipline to fathers disciplining their children because they love them.

Hebrews 12:7, 8 says: “If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? But if ye be without chastisement; whereof all are partakers then are ye bastards, and not sons.”

If you do not believe that God chastises, how can you explain Proverbs 19:187: “Chasten thy son while there is hope, and let not thy soul spare for his crying.” Liberalists would think this Scripture and others like it as “child abuse.”

Deuteronomy 8:5 says: “Thou shalt also consider in thine heart, that, as a man chasteneth his son, so the LORD thy God chasteneth thee.”

Love must always be the great motivating factor in everything that we do. If our spirits are not ruled by love there will be an unmistakable aloofness, stiffness, and severity about us that is absolutely not of God.

To be continued.

Be encouraged.

Colin Campbell

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GodlyDynastyMother, you are a NATION BUILDER!

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BeStrongMay God strengthen you mightily as you mother and train your children today. You are privileged to be working in the most influential career in the nation--building a strong marriage and family, and consequently building a nation! And even more amazing, you don't have an earthly employer; your employer is God Himself!

When Zerubbabel and his crew came back from Babylon to rebuild the temple, God encouraged them with the words: "Yet now be strong, alert and courageous, O Zerubbabel, says the Lord; be strong, alert and courageous O Joshua... and be STRONG, ALERT and COURAGEOUS all you people of the land, and WORK. For I am with you, says the Lord of hosts" (Haggai 2:4 Amplified).

We are also involved in rebuilding--rebuilding a nation where marriages and families are falling apart. I believe the answer to the cry of the psalmist: "If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do?" is to build them again. We do this firstly by putting every effort into building our own marriage and family, and secondly, to be part of strengthening and building up again the families of the nation by proclaiming and standing true to God's principles.

How do we this? We have to be STRONG! We have to be DISCERNING AND ALERT to the enemy's subtle inroads into our home! We have to be COURAGEOUS! And, we have to WORK! Yes, it is not a picnic! It takes WORK!

But, we do not faint, because who is with us? THE LORD OF HOSTS! The strong and mighty Warrior! The Lord of the armies of heaven who fights for His people.

Be encouraged today in your great work of building. You are doing a great work. I know you'll be strong and courageous for the task.

~ Nancy Campbell

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PrayPeacePhilippians 4:7: “And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”

Psalm 122:6, 7: “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee. Peace be within thy walls, and prosperity within thy palaces.”

Referring to Jerusalem, the City of Peace, the Scriptures teach us to pray for the peace of Jerusalem. It says that those who love Jerusalem will prosper. We are to pray for peace to be in her walls and prosperity within her dwellings.

Hebrews 12:22 tells us that we are “Come unto mount Zion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem.” By the grace of God, we are now citizens of the heavenly Jerusalem. Revelation 3:12 and 21:2 calls it the New Jerusalem and the Holy City.

The old Jerusalem, although called the City of Peace, has not experienced very much peace during its history. Primarily because its personal relationship with God became cold and institutionalized, culminating in the rejection of the Prince of Peace, Jesus Christ.

However, we who are now by virtue of our relationship with the Prince of Peace (the New Jerusalem spiritually speaking), should be filled and overflowing with His peace. Everywhere we go we should radiate His glorious peace. As it was with Jesus, so it should be with us. People we meet should literally feel and sense God’s peace in us.

Peace that passes all understanding is not limited to having everything perfect around us. Jittery, nervous, anxious Christians are a paradox to the peace of God. We must beware of institutionalizing our Christian faith which results in failing to build up our personal relationship with the Prince of Peace.

Be encouraged.

Colin Campbell

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CompassionateWombIsn't it awesome to know that we weren't created haphazardly, but purposely? God created every aspect of our female body for His divine purposes. He didn't create our female organs to lie dormant or to atrophy, but to fulfill God's wondrous designs. Our whole being, transcendentally and physically, is tied together. Our womb is not only a physical organ. It is the very seat of our emotions. It is the essence of our motherly compassion and love.

It always amazes me that the word "womb" in the Bible is used to describe the physical womb and also compassion and pity, especially God's compassion. When we embrace the function of our womb, we experience more and more of the anointing of God's compassion in our lives.

Isaiah 49:15 reads: "Can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have COMPASSION on the son of her WOMB? Yea, they may forget, yet will I not forget thee." Do you notice that compassion and the womb are linked together?

Do not despise the glorious function of your womb. It is not only where you conceive and nurture an eternal soul, but where the anointing of God's compassion and love encompasses you. And, even more amazingly, you reveal God's compassionate heart toward your children and those around you.

Be blessed today,

Nancy Campbell

Painting by Sergey Andreevitch Tutunov

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PeacefulSpiritJesus said in John 14:27: “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.”

We must learn to rule our spirits by partaking of things that minister peace, not only to our own spirits, but also to the spirits of those around us.

Men, I think that one of the greatest things that possessed the life and body of Jesus when He walked this earth was His peace. What consciously and unconsciously attracted people to Him? Was it is zeal for righteousness and holiness? Was it His ability and power to heal the sick and raise the dead? Was it is His message of love? All these were attractive attributes of Jesus and it would be wrong to say that one was greater than the other.

However, in this troubled world, people long for peace. The hymn writer expressed this quest for peace when he penned the words:

When peace like a river attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll,
Whatever my lot, thou hast taught me to say,
It is well, it is well with my soul.

In a world full of challenges and strife that can so easily take control of our spirits, we must partake liberally of the things that enable peace to rule our hearts.

When Jesus beheld the city of Jerusalem, He wept over it “Saying, if thou hadst known even thou, at least in this thy day, the things which belong unto thy peace! But now they are hid from thine eyes” (Luke 19:41, 42). The Prince of Peace walked their streets and entered their temple, but they rejected Him. In doing so they rejected His peace, not only externally for the city and temple that would soon be destroyed, but they rejected His inward peace which is far greater.

The peace of God must be the internal ruler of our spirits. When peace controls our spirits, no matter what chaos happens around us, we are like the eye in the midst of the storm. The eye of the storm is a peaceful place.

Jerusalem means City of Peace (Hebrews 7:2). How amazing that the City of Peace rejected the Prince of Peace and instead received destruction.

We men must also receive Christ with open arms to rule our spirits. In this matter we must be most diligent.

Be encouraged.

Colin Campbell

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