Idleness

"She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness."  Proverbs 31: 27 

This one hurts my toes.  I can feel them being stepped all over and it hurts!  I mean, I do not consider myself lazy or even idle, and I feel exactly the same as you do when the rare occassion comes around to sit and read a magazine article or do anything else that makes me happy and is not actively productive. 

So what is idleness?  Think about a car.  When a car is idle it is still running, but it isn't going anywhere.  You can hear the engine, it is using gas (energy) but it is accomplishing NOTHING, unless it is an old fashioned car like mine.  Then it is spewing pollution into the air as well. 

We could consider our idleness the same way.  If we are taking time for ourselves and we are being renewed and rested, then we ARE accomplishing something.  With the right balance, this is NECESSARY to being productive. A car is not idle if it is being maintenanced, even though it is not accomplishing its purpose.  It HAS to be taken care of to work properly.  However,  if your Facebook and blog hopping time turns into hours and responsibilities ( the affairs of your household) are not taken care of, then you have been idle. 

Idle = accomplishing nothin of value.  If we are idling, we are just asking for Satan to come along and direct our energy toward evil.  Incidently, time in God's word in any form is NEVER idleness.  Something is most definitely being accomplished.  So, next time you feel guilty, consider if you are truly being idle.  Next time everything does not get done, seek out where  you were idle, or if you were,  and make a point to change it. 


Welcome Wednesday


Welcome to the "Welcome Wedneday blog hop!  Stick around awhile, and I hope you decide to come back;)  Check out our welcome post to see what it's all about, and then check out what's going on.  I love to start discussions, so don't forget to comment, and let me know if you are a new follower from the hop so I can follow back:).  To join click the button to the right to get started.  Have a blessed day!

The "Work" Dilemma

"She considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings she plants a vineyard. " Proverbs 31:16

For the first 11 years of my married life, including my first 5 as a mother, I worked outside of the home.  I did so out of necessity to pay the bills.  Not saying some of those bills were not our fault, but many of them were the standard: mortgage, student loan, utilities, etc.  I went into motherhood knowing this would be the case, and I thought I was okay with that.  Then I wasn't.  My heart ached with guilt each and every day that I could not do all God had for me to do as a wife and mother because I worked. 

Now I work from home, and thought the perks our OUTSTANDING, there are many times I STILL cannot do all I feel I am meant to do as a wife a mother because of work.  So, I thought we might look more closely at our girlfriend from Proverbs 31.  First, do not let ANYONE fool  you into thinking that she ONLY worked on household chores.  She did NOT only deal with domestic issues such as clothing and feeding her family, though she did do these things, and from scratch no less. 

Consider verse 16.  Now, before you say this was simply a garden, look closely at the verse above.  See that word earnings?  She made money.  I am unclear here as to whether to she already had earnings, bought the field, and planted the vineyard, or if the earnings were from the field.  Maybe some of you who are more studied on the subject can help out.  But one thing I do know almost for certain is that she DID NOT get paid to do regular housekeeping and mothering chores. 

My point is, IF you have to work, please do not be discouraged and do not let the enemy condemn you.  If you feel the Lord leading you to go a different direction, pray for Him to lead you to the way to do whatever it is He is asking, and obey Him.  It may be that He is asking you to take a leap of faith and know that, though you may have to sacrifice some comforts, He will care for you.  It may be He wants you to stay put and minister where you are, and if that is the case, ask Him how you can do so and still do what is required of you at home.  He will NOT leave you hanging if you are willing to HEAR what he has to say.  Even if it is to spend less time online, reading, or watching television. (Ouch)

If you are someone who is interested in working from home there are options, and not all of them include sales or making things.  There really are real jobs you can do online to make money.  I know because I found them.  Try sites such as  WAHAdventures.com and WAHM.com.  These two sites helped me tremendously in finding job postings and weeding out the scams.  Miranda and her team at WAH Adventures.com do a great job of helping you find what you can and and want to do, reviewing sites that hirer workers to work at home, and giving a host of other information.  (Incidently, I am new to the writing team on this blog and some of my stuff should publish this week!)   WAHM.com has job listings, helpful articles, and forums that offer a ton of information as well. 

Whether you work outside of the home or work at home, chances are you feel pulled between doing what you are supposed to do and want to do as a wife and mother, and getting your work done.  I pray this encourages you.  The Proverbs 31 Woman earned money and helped with household expenses sister, so if you do it is OKAY.  If this is what the Lord has for you and you feel overwhelmed, ask Him to help you prioritize according to His will so that you can do all He has for you to do.






Welcome

Welcome to "More than Rubies."  This blog is a work in progress, so bear with me.  My heart's desire is to offer practical advice on how to become more like the woman of Proverbs 31 fame, and in doing so to help us all become the women the Lord intends us to be, and become more like Jesus.  This should be the number one goal of all who profess to believe that Jesus is the Christ, the living Son of God. 

Sometimes the posts are spiritual, sometimes they are more on the practical side, but I pray they always encourage.  I have buttons that link to many other blogs that I find encouraging in this area of life, and I hope you will too.  Check them out.  Like my posts, some are spiritual, some are practical such as how to better save or manage money, better homekeeping, etc., and some are simply written by women I feel are inspiring. 

So grab a cup of your favorite warm drink (you'll learn mine is strong, black coffee) and stay for a while.  Oh, and don't forget to comment!  I can't wait to get to know you better.

Afar?

 "She is like the merchant ships, bringing her food from afar."  Proverbs 31:14

So where was/ is "afar?"  Is this really saying we should go way off and get food for our families?  I do not really think the point of this verse is WHERE she got the food so much as HOW she got it.  She went to the trouble to get it.  Seeing as this is the Proverbs 31 Woman, I imagine she provided healthy, delicious meals within her means.  What does this look like practically for us?  I think it looks like going that little extra step.  I may be supporting a spouse who is on a special diet, whether self-imposed or medically necessary, or it may mean not giving up on finding healhty foods your kids will actually eat. 

It can get frustrating, I know.  As a wife to a husband who is on a medically necessary low-carb diet, a daughter with Cystic Fibrosis who can basically have whatever she wants, and a son who is just a normal little boy who doesn't like his veggies but needs to learn healthy eating habits, I can tell you first hand it is tempting to throw cereal on the table every night or just let them have whatever they want.  Chicken nuggets five nights a week?  Sure!  A bag of potato chips for lunch?  Why not!

Keep in mind NONE of the foods  mentioned above are bad occassionally, but finding ways to provide them with foods they both enjoy and that are good for them, even if it takes a little extra effort, is one way we can be more like the Proverbs 31 Woman in our daily lives. 

So what are your tricks?  One of my favorites is Ragu Old World Style pasta sauce.  It has 2 servings of veggies in every serving of sauce.  Since my son LOVES spaghetti, I can get some veggies in him this way AT LEAST once a week.  The sauce works well in other recipes too.  We switched from meat sauce to spaghetti and meatballs so that when the rest of us has spaghetti, dad can just have the meatballs. 

Let us in on how you put in little extra effort to bring food from "afar."