Dear Above Rubies reader,
Many blessings to you today. May your home be filled with the joy of the Lord. Yes, I am really praying this for you. God equates motherhood with joy. Psalm 113:9 says, "He maketh the barren woman to keep house, and to be a joyful mother of children. Praise ye the Lord." God doesn't want us to be miserable mothers of children. Or groaning and complaining mothers of children. He wants us to be joyful. This word means "to be blithe, gleeful, cheerful, and merry-hearted." This sounds like a happy home, doesn't it?
And do you notice what it says at the end of the Scripture? "Praise ye the Lord." He wants your home to be filled with praises. Praises to the Lord. Praises to your husband. Praises to your children. You may be thinking, this sounds a bit over the top to me. Dear mother, can I sweetly ask you to not get into the rut of living by your feelings. They are temporary. They come and go. Instead, live by the truth of the God's Word. Not only does God intend for you to be a joyful mother, but if you are born again by the Spirit of God, He lives in you, and His character is JOY. Joy resides in you. But you have to embrace it and confess it.
In Todays Newsletter:
Praise the Lord, the new issue of Above Rubies, # 89 has been printed and the magazine will be sent out all across USA next week. I am so sorry for the long delay. We had to wait for the finance to come in which took many months. I guess not many realize that it costs about $60,000 to print and send out each issue of Above Rubies. However, you will now receive your new magazine soon. I know you will love it. Reading it over again, I am so blessed by the testimonies of the wives and mothers who have written. You will be too.
In this coming magazine, I have shared four songs for you to download FOR FREE. They are songs that will encourage you as a wife and mother. Because it is easier for you to click on the link than copy it from the magazine, I will give them to you in this newsletter, too. Hope you enjoy them.
In the new issue of Above Rubies, I have written an article about the need to shepherd our little flock. It is called SHEEP HAVE PROBLEMS. I know you will be blessed.
However, I want to share with you another thought. One of the characteristics of the Great Shepherd is that He gathers His sheep. He wants them together. He wants them as a flock. He wants them in His fold. Don't you love the words of Isaiah 40:11, "He shall feed his flock like a shepherd: he shall gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom, and shall gently led those that are with young." As we see the character of the Great Shepherd, we learn how He wants us to shepherd the little flock He gives to us.
Another Scripture about God gathering His sheep is Micah 2:12 ESV, "I will surely assemble all of you, O Jacob I will gather the remnant of Israel; I will set them together like sheep in a fold, like a flock in a pasture." This is ultimately talking about the restoration of Israel to the land and how God is gathering, and will continue to gather, His people back to the land He gave them by divine decree. However, we also learn more of this gathering anointing. Do you notice that the picture of "gathering" is used three times in this one Scripture? It seems that one word is not enough.
1) Assemble. The Hebrew word is asuph. It is one of the two principle words for "gather" and means "to bring together." This should be our goal with our family. We should make every decision in the light of cementing our family, rather than fragmenting the family. Seek to do more "family" things together, rather than separating. Whatever you do that keeps the family together strengthens the family. Whatever you do that separates the family weakens the family.
God wants our families to be like a flock and therefore we should always be gathering them together. Gathering the little ones around us for a story. Gathering them close for hugs. Gathering the family to the Family Meal Table. Gathering the family together for Family Worship.
Let's become GATHERING MOTHERS!
2) Gather. The Hebrew word is qavats and means "to gather to a single location." Once again, we see that God doesn't want His flock, or His families scattered everywhere, but gathered together in the home. Children inherently love to be together, not separated, so why do we separate them? American children are often expected to sleep in separate bedrooms. Children hate it. They would much rather be together with their siblings.
3) Set them together. The Hebrew word is sum and means "to establish, to plant, to put something somewhere." God is gathering His people back to His land from the four corners of the earth. God wants us to also settle and establish our children. He doesn't give us a baby to give to someone else to raise while we go and do "our thing." He doesn't give us children to hand over to the humanistic state education to educate and where they can meet peers who will influence them away from godly principles and lifestyle. God wants His flock gathered together. He wants you to keep your flock gathered together "like a flock in the midst of their fold."
Read also Jeremiah 23:3 and 31:10.
And I am always open to fresh new testimonies on any subject of being a wife and mother. Thanks.
I know that different families use different resources for their Family Devotions. In our home we enjoy using THE DAILY LIGHT which is a compilation of Scriptures on a certain theme for the morning and evening. We love it because it is only God's Word. It has been used by families for generations.
Currently I make available to our readers DAILY LIGHT ON THE DAILY PATH which is the New King Jams Version. Here is the link: http://bit.ly/DailyLightDailyPath
"I paint signs by hand, and recently painted Proverbs 31:10 to hang in my daughter's bedroom. I would love to be able to offer this to your readers. I am donating $5 from the purchase of each sign to Above Rubies. This is the link to purchase this sign from etsy:
Thanks, Emily Hess. Mama to four darling daughters!"
"In 2011, I spent seven weeks in a Ukrainian orphanage for severely disabled children. They spent their days behind crib bars. I held these little ones, looked into their eyes, and told them that I loved them. I found families for three of these children that I knew were available for adoption. But this was not easy. It took months of advocating, years even. One of the children, Katia (aka Levina), came to the US in 2012. The two other children, Yuri and Viktor, are still in the process of being adopted, as I was only able to find them a family September 2013. I felt like I had completed what I had set out to do. These three would receive the love and care I had prayed so hard for them to have. Then I received an email that said, 'Please find [a] family for Miroslav.' He had finally become available for adoption. I had met Miroslav, too, you see. He was the sweetest, most angelic little boy. He had such a gentle, forgiving spirit. I knew that, if I could, I must find him a family, too. So now I am starting it all again.
"But I felt like I shouldn't just be trying to get Miroslav a family. My heart was heavy as I thought of all the other photos a Ukrainian friend had sent me of children with special needs. She had asked me over and over again to find these children adoptive families. But it is so hard. Especially for one person. I have focused on finding homes for the children I met. I guess I feel like I have a special obligation to these ones. How can you hold the hand of a little boy who has never felt what it was like to be loved and not decide to try to bring that love to him? I felt like if I paid attention to other children I was told about, it would be too overwhelming and I would never be able to find any of them homes.
"Then I considered the fact that I may be one of the only people outside of Ukraine who knows about these specific children. If I don't say anything, their stories may never, ever be heard. Let me tell you, it is terrifying to think that you may have the power to give life and love to a child or let them spend the rest of their days in a crib, simply by keeping quiet or speaking out.
"So I am speaking up for these children I have not met. I have seen their pictures and their names and know that they would do anything to have a home. Some of them are severely disabled. Some of them are "normal" boys and girls who need someone to call Mom and Dad, too. Though they do not live in conditions as difficult as the children with special needs, many do not know God, will age out of the system, have no one to turn to, no one to help them, and, thus, may turn to a life of prostitution or crime to support themselves. Statistics show this shockingly.
"Would you commit to finding one of these little ones an adoptive family? I cannot do it all by myself. I don't mean for you to do one blog post or make one phone call. I mean for you to PROMISE yourself that you will not stop advocating until that girl or boy has a family. Even when it seems hopeless. Even when no one cares. Because, trust me, you'll get close to giving up many times before a family is found.
"Would you commit to spreading the word about Sergey, a bedridden 2 ½ year old with hydrocephalus and spina bifida? Or for two "normal" brothers who need a home? What about Olena, an eight-year-old who has cerebral palsy? I have the profiles of probably over 15 children who all desperately need compassion and hope.
"You could save a life across the world from your living room. Please, choose to help one of these little ones. Need ideas? Contact me for ideas of making this need known. And don't forget to pray every day that God would guide you to the right people. This could be a great endeavor for a whole family to do together.
"To read the story of Katia (aka Levina) and her adoption go to the following links.
Part one: http://teensintercedingfororphans.com/2013/11/20/loving-katia-part-1/
Part two: http://teensintercedingfororphans.com/2013/11/21/loving-katia-part-2/
Did you know that we have Above Rubies articles and testimonies in foreign languages on the website? If you know people who speak these languages, you can let them know. Or, you can print off the articles for them.
The following are the languages we have available and the number of articles.
Czech Language (1)
Dutch Language (2)
Finnish Language (1)
French Language (13)
German Language (2)
Hungarian Language (1)
Polish Language (11)
Slovenian Language (1)
Spanish Language (18)
Russian Language (1)
Portuguese Language (5)
Be watching for your new magazine.
Love and blessings to you and your home,