Tuesday, November 14, 2017

I Would Recommend All Parents to Get This Kind of Bible



"Your Word is a lamp to my feet, and a light for my path!" Psalm 119:105

In many houses you will see beautiful Bibles bound handsomely in morocco leather, with gilt edges, and full of bright pictures. I love to see a beautiful Bible in a home--especially if it is not kept too clean and unsoiled. But the most beautiful form in which a household Bible can be bound, is in the holy life of godly parents. There is no tinted, gold-edged paper so lovely--as the pages God gives us on which to write our daily record.

The precepts and lessons of the inspired Word sound very sweetly when read out of a richly-covered volume--but they sound far more sweetly, when the child can spell them out of the parent's daily life.

It is well for a parent to read to his child from the inspired page about the beauty of holiness; but it is better still when the child can see that beauty shining out transfigured in every feature of his parent's character.

It is well for him to read of the patience, gentleness, meekness, forbearance, and love of Christ; but it is better when he exemplifies all of these traits.

It is well for him to teach the child what the Bible says about lying, profanity, intemperance, and all sins; it is better when his life proclaims all these lessons.

No family Bible is so well printed and bound, as the one that is printed on the heart, and bound up in the life of a godly parent. I would recommend all parents to get this kind of Bible--and to keep the dust off it always by constant use. This is the best kind for a lamp to the children's feet.

A beautiful Christian life is a living epistle written by the hand of God--which the youngest child can read before it has learned to spell out the shortest words of the language. It is a sermon that preaches Christ all day long--seven days in the week!

There is no heresy so dangerous to childhood--as heresies lived in the home!

(J.R. Miller)

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Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Happy to be Home


Dear Ladies at Home,

The enemy of our souls would like us to think of our work here as drudgery.  He would like us to pick on our husbands.  He would like us to waste away minutes that turn into hours.  He would like us to see teaching our children at home as "too much work" and "too hard".  He would like us to tire of training our children.  He would like us to be dreadfully unhappy, and to see that unhappiness as stemming from the work we do at home.  He would like us to tire of cooking, of cleaning, of making a beautiful and peaceful home.  Why?  Because our Enemy knows how important our task is--this kingdom work, and he'd like to take us away from it as much as possible.

How far our Enemy has succeeded.  How many Christian women are at work these days instead of being at home, keeping it?  How many Christian women shuttle their children off to someone else to take care of and then go out themselves to provide an income?  How many times are young ladies pressured about going to college and asked what career they are going to chase after?  And we think this is normal, but it's not.  It blasphemes the very Word of God (Titus 2:3-5)



I am so thankful that my husband sees the need for him to be the provider, and for me to stay home, taking care of our home and our children.  It is so good to show our husbands that we are happy at home and are thankful for his hard work which allows us to be here.  There will always be something that I could find to complain about.  I could look at my work here as drudgery, but instead, I want to be thankful, I must be thankful.  This is the work the Lord has given me to do, and I am so glad.  I am the only one who can be our children's mother.  I am the only one who can be a help meet for my husband, and there is no one else better to take care of our own home.  Every day we have at home is a gift from the Lord. Let us not take it for granted.

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Tuesday, October 31, 2017

How to be Motivated for Day to Day Homemaking



How can we be motivated every day for taking care of our husbands, children, and homes?  I'm sure you, as I do, wake up some days and find it hard to want to get going, and maybe find it hard to get started.  Maybe we feel like we'd just like to sit around and waste time.  Maybe we are pulled away by social media or other distractions on the internet.  How do we get motivated?  Please join me on Raising Homemakers today where I answer this question.


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Thursday, October 26, 2017

The Parable of the Public Poolers



Once upon a time, in a place called America, someone had an idea. It was a bold plan—one that would alter the very social fabric of the nation. It wasn’t long before word of the idea began to spread, and many people thought it was simply marvelous. In due time, after enough support had been generated, the plan was put into action.

At first glance, the plan seemed simple enough. Its proponents said it would be fair, free, and effective for all. The plan was this: to construct government-funded public pools in every community across the land.

“Every child deserves a positive swimming experience,” the plan’s proponents argued. “Only the government can truly accomplish this through our new public pool system.”



The plan had its detractors, but in the end, it went forward, and soon virtually every city and town in America had its own government-funded public pool. All the children in the community spent their days at the pool under the supervision of the state-certified lifeguards.

At first the pools seemed wholesome enough. True, there were those who said it wasn’t the government’s business to operate a pool system, but most people seemed satisfied. Things went along smoothly, and within a few generations, the government pools were entrenched in the public mind as a necessary and helpful part of society. They were as much a fixture as baseball, Mom, and apple pie.

In the course of time, however, things began to go wrong. It was observed that the pools weren’t as safe as they had once been. In fact, not only were they not safe, they were becoming downright dangerous—even deadly. Somehow, the public pools all across the land had become infested with man-eating sharks. Children were returning home scarred and maimed. Many were even being devoured alive.



It was at this point that a handful of parents across the nation became alarmed. They decided not to send their children away to the shark-infested public pools any longer. Instead, they would keep their children at home and supervise them in their own pools. In time, this new movement came to be known as homepooling.

In days gone by, homepooling had been common practice in America. But with the introduction of the government pool system, homepooling had become increasingly rare. It may seem shocking, but homepooling had even been outlawed in some states! Certainly America had wandered far from her ideals of freedom and liberty when parents were no longer able to direct their own children’s pooling.

The pioneers of homepooling were greeted with much skepticism. Most parents were complacent, content to ignore the safety hazards of the public pools. In the meantime, conditions continued to worsen, with more and more children being devoured by the sharks. Statistics reported that up to 85% of the children who went swimming at the public pool were being injured or eaten alive.

As a result, the new homepooling movement began to grow. And it was observed that not only were homepooled children surviving, they were thriving. Researchers began to take notice, and it was discovered that homepoolers performed far above their public-pooled peers on standardized swimming tests. Homepooling was beginning to be vindicated as a valid option.



In an average community in America lived a woman named Mary. She and her husband had both been raised in the public pool system, though it wasn’t as bad when they were growing up as it was today. Now, Mary herself was a young mother of three children whom she was accustomed to sending to the public pool. Every morning she would get her children out of bed, feed them a hasty breakfast, then rush them out the door to catch the pool bus. All her neighbors did the same thing. It was just how life in America worked. Then one day, she met a homepooling family at her church. She was impressed! The children were polite, respectful, and were all excellent swimmers. Mary had heard of homepooling, but had never met a family that actually did it. She realized she needed to give the matter some attention.

One day, as she was researching homepooling, her 8-year-old son arrived home on the pool bus. As she saw him limping into the house, Mary knew something was wrong. Upon inspection, she noticed he had deep wounds on his legs—a narrow escape from a shark.

That settled it for Mary and her husband. They notified the public pool superintendent that their children would no longer be coming to the pool—they were going to begin homepooling right away.

It wasn’t long before Mary became a staunch advocate of homepooling. She loved having her children at home with her. She was glad that she no longer had to fear the constant menace of the sharks at the public pool. Her children were safe at home where they belonged.

With all the blessings homepooling had brought into her family’s life, Mary expected all her friends to be excited about it too. She was sure they would begin homepooling when she told them how wonderful it was. But instead of excitement, she was greeted with indifference by many, and even with hostility by some.

One friend at church told her, “You’re overprotecting your kids. How are they going to handle the sharks out in the adult world if they don’t learn how to deal with them now?”

Another responded with a more spiritual sounding argument. “My kids are being salt and light out in the public pools. If all the Christians pull their kids out of the pools, who will reach the other kids?”

Mary didn’t think that argument made very much sense. If her kids were being eaten alive, they certainly weren’t going to be reaching many others.

Yet another mom told her, “The pools in our town aren’t like the pools in the bigger cities. They have sharks and stingrays and alligators there. Ours aren’t like that. We have a great pool system here.”

Mary soon discovered that very few people were willing to admit that the local pools had problems. “We have an above-average lifeguard-to-swimmer ratio,” another church friend said. “Plus, some of the lifeguards are even Christians.”

Great, Mary thought to herself. They can pray for your kids while they’re getting eaten up by the sharks.

As she tried to spread the word about homepooling, Mary was astonished at the indifference she saw all around her. Children were being maimed, injured, and even killed every day, yet so many seemed unconcerned.

As she continued talking to others, Mary couldn’t believe the excuses people were using. If it had been a spiritual issue instead of mere physical safety, she was sure they wouldn’t use these same arguments. After all, if the public pools had been harming children spiritually—if they were causing kids to walk away from their faith, leave church behind, or rebel against their parents—surely they would see the significance and would begin homepooling. As it was, too many parents were ignoring the issue altogether. After all, it was just a matter of their kids’ physical well-being, and apparently that was easy for many parents to ignore.

“Look,” one friend said, “if I wanted to start homepooling, I’d have to quit my job, and you know we can’t get by on just one income. It isn’t practical in the modern world. Maybe homepooling worked back in the pioneer days, but it just won’t work now—not for us.”

Mary was startled that her friend would put finances above her children’s safety. After all, this other family wasn’t destitute. They had a reasonably nice home, two cars, and plenty of extras such as cable TV, a couple of cell phones, Internet hookup, and more. Wouldn’t it have been worth sacrificing part of their lifestyle to protect their kids?

One friend was bluntly honest. “Oh,” she said, “I just wouldn’t have the patience to homepool my kids! I think it’s great that you can do it, but it just wouldn’t work for me. I’d probably kill them the first day,” she laughed.



Never mind what the sharks are probably doing, Mary thought to herself.

She was surprised at how many people were worried about socialization. “How will my kids have friends if I homepool them? I don’t want them to be social misfits,” explained one.

“Homepooling doesn’t mean your kids won’t have friends,” Mary answered. “It just means you can have more control over who your kids are with. Plus,” she added, “you won’t have to worry about all the sharks and other problems that are in the public pool.”

“That’s just like you homepoolers,” her friend retorted. “You’ve got such a ‘holier-than-thou’ attitude. You think everyone should homepool, and you have to start criticizing the public pool every chance you get. I think I know what’s best for my kids.”

Mary didn’t see how close encounters with sharks every day could be best for any kids, but she knew better than to try to reason with her friend now.

Others were concerned about their kids missing out on the opportunities afforded by the government pool system. “My son really loves the diving board at the public pool,” Mary’s neighbor said. “I couldn’t provide that for him at home.”

Others were afraid of teaching advanced swimming techniques. “I never did very well at swimming myself,” one friend confessed. “I just don’t think I could teach my daughter some of the advanced things she wants to learn.”

Mary could relate to this one. She still felt a little intimidated sometimes too. But she knew there were answers. “There’s lots of great curriculum out there that will help you—books and DVDs and all kinds of things. Lots of other people are doing it, so I’m sure you can too!”

Her friend wasn’t convinced. “Well, maybe. I don’t know. We’ll see how things go.”

As she looked around, Mary was saddened. How could her friends not realize that their kids were more important than their careers, social standing, personal free time, and all the other things that prevented them from homepooling?

Time went by. Her friends at church had been insisting for years that their kids would be fine in the public pool system. But now that the kids were getting older, they didn’t look like they were doing well. Lots of them had already become casualties of the sharks and had disappeared from the church pews. Many others walked with a limp from injuries sustained in close encounters. “It’s just a phase,” some said. “All teenagers go through this. There’s nothing we can do. We just have to believe that everything will work out fine in the end.”

“It’s tough to raise kids in today’s world,” others said. “There’s only so much you can do.”

You could have done something years ago, Mary thought. You could have done something before the sharks got to your kids.

But if Mary was grieved by those who rejected homepooling altogether, she was even more grieved by the behavior of some homepoolers.

She couldn’t believe it, but some of her homepooling friends were actually putting sharks right in their own backyard pools.

“We can’t get by with this,” Mary protested. “Our kids aren’t immune to injury just because we’re homepooling! We can’t bring the same influences that are out in the public pools into our homepools and expect everything to be fine. A shark is a shark. It doesn’t matter if it’s in the public pool or in the homepool—it’s still going to hurt your kids!”



Some who had begun well decided to quit homepooling and started sending their kids back to the public pool. They seemed to have forgotten why they started homepooling in the first place. Mary couldn’t understand it. She knew she was going to keep homepooling all the way through to the finish.

Mary saw the cost of sending her kids back to the public pool. Yes, there were times when homepooling was difficult and taxed her patience. But what was that compared to the heartbreak of seeing her children come home from the public pool with ugly wounds and scars—or worse, perhaps seeing the day when they wouldn’t come home at all? Yes, there were times she wished she could go back to her old job, make more money, and have a more luxurious lifestyle. But what were the luxuries of this life worth in comparison to the blessing of knowing her kids were safe and happy at home?

Mary knew she was unnoticed by the world. She knew she might forever miss out on the acclaim and praise of man. She knew she would probably never achieve success as our world defines it. Many said she was wasting her life. But Mary didn’t care. How could she? Wasn’t it worth any sacrifice to raise her children for the glory of God? Wasn’t it worth any cost to see them reach adulthood whole, happy, and vibrant? Yes. A thousand times yes.

This article was originally published in the Jul/Aug 2011 issue of Home School Enrichment Magazine.

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Tuesday, October 17, 2017

A Gentle Mother



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 lead those that are with young.
~Isaiah 40:11

I was reading this verse in my quiet time today.  I have read it many times before, but today I was especially comforted by how the Lord leads us gently who are with young.  Isn't that a special thing?  Not only does He lead us dear mothers, but He does it gently.  What a sweet and wonderful thing.

As the Lord leads us gently, so shouldn't we also lead our dear children gently?  There are too many harsh mothers these days.  Perhaps you have seen them in the stores, scowling and/or shrieking at their children.  Yes, we must tell our young ones what to do, and we must keep order, but shouldn't we do it gently, as our dear Shepherd does for us?  He is not a harsh taskmaster, as some portray Him.  So we should show His true nature to our children by leading them gently, with love and kindness, and always pointing them to the Saviour of our souls.

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Thursday, October 12, 2017

3 Sewing Projects To Keep Your Family Warm This Winter


Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Today we have a freelance contribution post by Sally.  Thank you, Sally, for this helpful post!

Homemakers know that being prepared for the winter is the key to a comfortable home when the chill sets in. In Proverbs 30:25, we are reminded that “Ants are creatures of little strength, yet they store up their food for the summer.” Preparing our homes and ourselves for the winter is always viewed as a practical project, but for the Christian homemaker, getting ready for the cold months ahead can also add to the overall charm of the home. One of the best ways to make sure that everyone stays warm this winter is to take on sewing projects that will keep everyone in your family warm and cozy on snowy days. Here are 3 sewing projects to keep your family warm this winter.

Add leather sleeves to a basic wool jacket


The people in Biblical times often wore wool, linen, animal skins, and leather garments. In fact, the prophet Elijah wore a leather belt as part of his humble attire as we are reminded in 2 Kings 1:8, “They replied, ‘He had a garment of hair and had a leather belt around his waist.’ The king said, ‘That was Elijah the Tishbite.’” This project won’t only keep your family warm, but it also recalls this particular time. You’ll need goatskin hides and a basic wool jacket, and since you’re working with leather, you’ll need to use a sewing machine. Simply sever the sleeves of the jacket, then lay the sleeves down on the hides and trace them before cutting the leather sleeves out with a Stanley knife. Pull the leather through the jacket and sew in place.

DIY draft blocker

In Biblical times, kings would have summer and winter houses so they could enjoy the warm weather in the former and keep warm in the latter as depicted in Jeremiah 36:22. The verse reads, “Now the king was sitting in the winter house in the ninth month, with a fire burning in the brazier before him.” While most of us only have one house to shelter our family from the elements, we can certainly find a way to make it more pleasant when the bitter cold arrives. To keep your home warm, sew a DIY draft blocker. Sew a piece of fabric to create a long tube, taking care to leave one end open. Fill it with wadding, cotton, or bits of fabric scraps before sewing it shut. Place draft blockers under your doors and windows to prevent the cold air from entering your home.

DIY hand warmers

We use our hands to work, comfort our children, and we lift them up in praise of our Lord. Keep your hands warm this winter with DIY hand warmers. Sew two pieces of fabric together, leaving one end open. Fill with uncooked rice and sew it closed. To use, heat in the microwave for about 5 minutes before handing them over to your family members.

Try any of these simple sewing projects to keep your family warm and cozy this winter.


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Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Invisible Mother



The following was shared with me several years ago.   Some of this is a bit silly, but I post it here to hopefully encourage us mothers that though it may seem that some times we do our work at home invisibly to those around us, our great God and King always sees us, and it is Him that we should aim to please above all others.


"It all began to make sense, the blank stares, the lack of response, the
way one of the kids
will walk into the room while I'm on the phone and ask to be taken to
the store.
Inside I'm thinking, 'Can't you see I'm on the phone?'
Obviously not.
No one can see if I'm on the phone, or cooking, or sweeping the floor,
or even
standing on my head in the corner, because no one can see me at all. I'm
invisible. The
invisible Mom. Some days I am only a pair of hands, nothing more: Can
you fix this? Can
you tie this?
Can you open this?

Some days I'm not a pair of hands; I'm not even a human being. I'm a
clock to ask, 'What
time is it?' I'm a satellite guide to answer, 'What number is the Disney
Channel?' I'm a car
to order, 'Right around 5:30, please.'

I was certain that these were the hands that once held books and the
eyes that studied
history and the mind that graduated sum a cum laude - but now they had
disappeared
into the peanut butter, never to be seen again. She's going; she's
going; she is gone!
One night, a group of us were having dinner, celebrating the return of a
friend from
England ... Janice had just gotten back from a fabulous trip, and she
was going on and on
about the hotel she stayed in.
I was sitting there, looking around at the others all put together so
well. It was hard not to
compare and feel sorry for myself. I was feeling pretty pathetic, when
Janice turned to me
with a beautifully wrapped package, and said, 'I brought you this.'
It was a book on the great cathedrals of Europe .

I wasn't exactly sure why she'd given it to me until I read her inscription:
'To Charlotte , with admiration for the greatness of what you are
building when no one
sees.'




In the days ahead I would read - no, devour - the book. And I would
discover what would
become for me, four life-changing truths, after which I could pattern my
work:
No one can say who built the great cathedrals - we have no record of
their names.
These builders gave their whole lives for a work they would never see
finished. They made
great sacrifices and expected no credit. The passion of their building
was fueled by their
faith that the eyes of God saw everything.
A legendary story in the book told of a rich man who came to visit the
cathedral while it was being built, and he saw a workman carving a tiny bird on the inside
of a beam. He was
puzzled and asked the man, 'Why are you spending so much time carving
that bird into a
beam tha
t
will be covered by the roof? No one will ever see it.'
And the workman replied, 'Because God sees.'
I closed the book, feeling the missing piece fall into place.
It was almost as if I heard God whispering to me, 'I see you, Charlotte.
I see the sacrifices you make every day, even when no one around you
does. No act of kindness you've done, no sequin you've sewn on, no cupcake
you've baked, is too small for me to notice and smile over. You are
building a great cathedral, but you can't see right now what it will
become.'

At times, my invisibility feels like an affliction. But it is not a
disease that is erasing my
life. It is the cure for the disease of my own self-centeredness. It is
the antidote to my
strong, stubborn pride.
I keep the right perspective when I see myself as a great builder. As
one of the people who
show up at a job that they will never see finished, to work on something
that their name
will never be on.
The writer of the book went so far as to say that no cathedrals could
ever be built in our lifetime because there are so few people willing to sacrifice to that
degree.
When I really think about it, I don't want my son to tell the friend
he's bringing home from
college for Thanksgiving, 'My Mom gets up at 4 in the morning and bakes
homemade pies,
and then she hand bastes a turkey for three hours and presses all the
linens for the table.'
That would mean I'd built a shrine or a monument to myself. I just want
him to want to
come home. And then, if there is anything more to say to his friend, to
add, 'you're gonna
love it there.'
As mothers, we are building great cathedrals. We cannot be seen if we're
doing it right.

And one day, it is very possible that the world will marvel, not only at
what we have built,
but at the beauty that has been added to the world by the sacrifices of
invisible women."

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Monday, October 9, 2017

What We Ought to be Teaching Young Girls


"The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things;
That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children,
To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed."
~Titus 2:3-5

Is this a passage we have become ashamed of?  Clearly this is something Christian women are to pass down from generation to generation.  Will we do it?  Where is our encouragement?  Have we just accepted the status quo of young women giving their younger years to college or working hours?  Or are we instilling in them the desire for work at home, doing what is good in the home, being a help to their families?

This becomes difficult in some situations where girls are not being raised in Christian families.  But still, no one can force her to go to college or to go get a job.  Some of my worst experiences in my younger years were at places of employment, and I do not recommend it for young ladies.  It is much better to remain at home, assisting mothers and families with home duties, sharpening skills for married life when the time is right.

We need to get away from the attitude that men and women are exactly the same in Christ.  Yes, we are of equal value and importance.  Salvation is available to both men and women, boys and girls, but men and women are very different and have been given different roles by our Creator.  We need to encourage and train our young women in the Church to desire motherhood, marriage, and homemaking, not college and careers.  This, in itself, furthers the work of Christ's kingdom, as we strengthen families and as mothers bring up children and teach them about the Lord all day.  We must never fall prey to the false idea that this is not important work.  This is Kingdom work.  What closer form of discipleship is there than devoted mothers and fathers raising up children for Christ's Kingdom?  Fathers must toil away at work since they are the providers, but mothers are home to nuture and care for children.  And even if they are in a state of childlessness, wives still have an important job of taking care of matters at home while their husbands are hard at work.

What do we say?  Do we keep silent when the young women in our Christian circles go on and on about college and careers?  What do you say?  Do you wait for them to ask you questions?  Please share in the comments your ideas or what has been helpful for you.

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Thursday, October 5, 2017

Saying Hello

Hello Ladies,

How have you all been?  We have been extremely busy here, so that's why I haven't posted in a while. I just wanted to pop in quickly and say hello, and share a few pictures with you of home life.

One of our children had a birthday recently, and Cherished of God made her this piggy cake.  As you can see, the frosting is a bit messy.  We always make our cakes and frostings from scratch, and for some reason this time, the frosting came out really liquidy.  I had an idea to try to save it with some xanthum gum, and it worked.  It's not the prettiest, but it's healthful and it's yummy just the same.  Piggy has chocolate drops for eyes, and strawberries for its mouth.  This was a delicious strawberry cake.



My husband bought me these beautiful flowers recently.  Aren't they lovely?

























I will try to write more soon, but for now I must get to clothes washing and meal planning for the next week.  May God bless your day in your home, serving your family.

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Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Women are Blessed at Home


Home is a wonderful respite from the world.  It's a place to rest, to relax, to feel at peace.  It's a place to feel safe and sheltered from the world.  It's a place to make as close to Heaven as possible.

What a beautiful occupation the Lord has given us.  What a holy calling, to make our homes a bit like Heaven on earth.  What a joy to wake up every day and minister to our husbands and children here in the safety and security of home.

How the Lord cares for us in telling us to "be keepers at home" and to "guide the house".  We have a special calling that a man cannot and does not have!  It is to us women, and us only, that the Lord gave this task.

I feel so blessed to be able to be at home, taking care of it and all the occupants here.  Each day brings its new challenges, and sometimes surprises, but how wonderful when we can start our days in thanksgiving to God that we have a home here on this earth, and to ask the Lord for His help with the day ahead as we serve Him as we serve our families.

We can bless our families by making home a peaceful place.  We can play lovely music, read God's Word, have a pleasant and lovely voice and demeanor.  We can speak with kindness and smile at our husbands and children.  We can make our homes lovely with decor and keep them clean and tidy.  We can cook lovely meals for our families that also nourish their bodies.  We can train our children up in the ways of the Lord, teaching them to love Him with their whole hearts.  We can be a loving support to our husbands, giving them our appreciation and admiration, and of course taking care of the things at home is a great relief to them!

What a wonderful job we have, that we don't have to go out to work to bring home the living, nor do we have to deal with co-workers, time clocks, nor bosses.  We are very blessed, indeed, ladies.  Let us wake up with these thoughts in our minds every day!

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