Featured Posts from the RUBY blog
“Love’s Sacrificial Mindset” by Carol Hind Tags: Love sacrifice God's Love

A Disturbing Narrative

There’s a story in the Bible, which grabs at my heartstrings whenever I read it. I’m troubled by the tragedy that unfolds, by the unnecessary waste of a young life, by the foolishness of a man’s vow, by the fact that our sovereign God did not intervene to save this young woman. It is hard to understand love’s sacrificial mindset.

I’m referring to the story of Jephthah’s daughter.  Have you read it? If not, or should you need to refresh your memory, it can be found at Judges 11:29-40.  In order for you to fully appreciate the message of this article, you will need to be familiar with this disturbing tale.

A Devoted Daughter

Now I’ve often heard about the special bond between a father and his daughter. It is not something to which I can relate, since I didn’t have that kind of relationship with my biological father. However, having walked with God for some years now, I believe I’m beginning to enjoy a similar bond with my Heavenly Father.

There is no doubt in my mind that Jephthah’s daughter loved her father very much. She was obviously watching and waiting for this mighty man of valour to return home from war.  As soon as she sees him, she runs out to meet him. She’s overjoyed at his safe return. She celebrates his triumph in customary fashion, with tambourines and dancing.  Alas, her love and devotion for Jephthah becomes her undoing. Her love for her father costs her life.

Now let’s apply this scenario to ourselves on a spiritual level. Do we love our Father God to the extent that it costs us our lives? I’m not referring to a literal death here. I’m referring to the demise of our old way of thinking and living, which runs counter to God’s commands, his word and his will. I’m referring to our constant challenge as believers.

“I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” (Galatians 2:20)

Do we love God with ALL of our heart, soul and strength as He requires? Have we crucified our flesh with its affections, appetites and desires, as His word demands? (Deuteronomy 6:5; Galatians 5:24).

Whilst I reflected on the various elements of this story, I wondered: where was Jephthah’s wife? I imagined her busy at home, tidying up, or preparing a special home-coming meal. And then I remembered Martha.

Martha, who hadn’t chosen the ‘better part’. Martha, who became preoccupied with serving food instead of sitting at Jesus’ feet. Are we like this? Too busy with our personal business, or too busy ‘serving the Lord’ to sit at his feet, to make him a priority in our lives?

If this is the case, may I remind you of Jesus’s words in Matthew 10:38-39? (See Amplified Bible). May I remind you that to be his disciples, we are required to lose our lower life (the life focused only on earthly quests and concerns) and pursue the higher (God-quality and spiritually focused) life?


God’s Measure of True Love

Now, with regards to our relationship with the Lord, we learn from Revelation 3:16, that He prefers we are cold, rather than lukewarm. Fellow Christian writers and readers, let us not be deceived into thinking we are ok because we go to church, participate in Christian activities and believe in God. Don’t forget, the devils also believe! So let me ask you—are you guilty of loving God with your lips, whilst your lifestyle declares otherwise?

Jesus revealed in no uncertain terms that there will be those who are convinced they are in the right place with God, working his works etc., but the Lord will turn to them and say: I never knew you; depart from me. And let’s not forget the five foolish virgins who found themselves shut out from the marriage feast, to whom the same damning words were spoken: I do not know you!

Are we paying heed to these stark warnings? Do we take them seriously? Do we yet understand love’s sacrificial mindset?

The ‘S’ Factor!

God requires an intimate knowledge of him. Relationship. Not words. Not unfulfilled intentions.

It can be easy in this age of grace to become careless. To be like the prodigal son, to avail ourselves of the rich resources of God’s Kingdom (his love, forgiveness, grace) and squander them selfishly, without care or consideration for the high price paid for us to enjoy our inheritance.

Wake up daughters of Zion! Wake up to the fact that the only life worth living is in our Father’s house, under his protection, submitted to his rules and regulations.

Wake up to the fact that we have an enemy, who hates us, and seeks to deceive and destroy us 24/7. Those suggestions that we can take God’s resources and use them for our own ends, where do you think they emanate from? Satan of course! Embraced and endorsed by our selfish inclinations, by our own carnal appetites and agendas.

We don’t even have to commit terrible sins.  Just not be fruitful.  Just not be concerned about the issues on God’s heart. Just be too busy with our personal dreams and desires to care about the needs of our neighbour, to participate meaningfully in the work of God’s kingdom, to fall on our knees and pray.

Daughters of Zion, I speak to myself and I speak to you all – wake up! Let us understand love’s sacrificial mindset.

Love’s Mature Outlook

Moving on, I’d like to focus on another admirable quality of Jephthah’s loving daughter. She is not bitter with her father, or about her fate. How about you?  Have your experiences of life caused you to become angry with God, resentful about your experiences and negative about your future?

Dear reader, I suffered many years of spiritual malaise because of wrong attitudes. I carried around in my heart an ever increasing record of offenses and was both inwardly and outwardly hostile towards those who hurt me. Yes, life can be unfair. However, spiritual maturity, faith and trust in our Father God, enables us to overcome and carry on with the right attitude.


Cultivate A Friendship Circle

Jephthah’s daughter called upon her friends and shared her sorrow. They mourned with her.  Do you have good, genuine, spiritual friends whom you can call and depend upon when needed? Who will pray for, and support you if, or when things fall apart?

Now don’t be discouraged if you don’t have such supportive friendships. There’s always the help and counsel of the three Godhead members to fall back on. In fact, you should be pursuing close fellowship with them anyway.

I believe your relationship with each (Father God, Jesus, Holy Spirit), is vital to your spiritual health and strength. Your relationship with them should not be superficial.  But deep. Strong. Like Paul’s—so that you are convinced in your heart that NOTHING can separate you from God’s love.

The Heroine’s Finale

As mentioned at the beginning, the story of Jephthah’s daughter always tugs at my heart.  I usually take issue with God about it. Why did he allow her to die?  It seems so harsh and unfair. I’ve never really gotten an answer.

However, I do acknowledge that God’s ways are higher than my thoughts and ways.  We are not qualified to judge.  Yet isn’t this how we can feel about the things we face in our own lives sometimes—about that false accusation, that persecution, that sudden catastrophe?


Jephthah’s daughter may have lost her life but she made history. God saw to it that she was inscribed within the pages of the Book of books.

There are those seeking to make history, to make a name for themselves, to make it according to worldly standards but in doing so, lose their own lives—whether literally, mentally, or spiritually.

Dear readers, let’s make sure we aren’t so foolish as to gain the whole world, yet lose our own soul.

Let’s remember we are not our own, we’ve been bought with a price. Let’s ensure that when all is done and dusted, our names appear in the Lamb’s Book of Life.

Join us in the RUBY community for more inspirational posts and discover opportunities to connect with other Christian women.



I’d describe myself as a God-seeker and recovering perfectionist. From an early age my love of words and insatiable appetite for stories kindled a passion for writing. I’ve enjoyed modest publishing success both in print and online and spent several rewarding years as one of a team of editors for a Christian women’s publication. I like to write devotionals, inspirational articles and poems and occasionally a short story. My blogs are Women of Warfare and Purpose Driven Achiever where you can read inspirational and thought-provoking articles.

Carol Hind Links

Feed Your Flame!
Category: Member Blogs
Tags: Christian life

Feed Your Flame

We all start out with a pilot light- that little spark that inspires us to do bigger and better things. Sometimes we wait for others to feed our flames to take us to the next level instead of finding our own fuel. It might work for a time, but when the fuel from others runs out, we often find ourselves back where we started- that tiny flicker of flame.
We can’t let ourselves wait for someone else to build up our fires. Don't get me wrong- It's great having support to keep the flames going, but the bulk of the fuel has to come from within us. 
Cakes bake from the applied heat, but cakes wouldn’t be the yummy, fluffy things they are without their ingredients!
This not only applies to our lives at home and the workplace, but also applies to our spiritual lives. God gave us the Holy Spirit in our hearts, but it’s up to us to apply the heat and fuel the fire. Use that passion you have deep down inside! Get inspiration from others, but remember if that's what you're depending on, the flames won’t last long without our feeding and fanning them by praying, reading the Bible, going to church and really listening to the sermons.
Don't wait for an epiphany- look within yourself and your environment (who and what you surround yourself) and seek an epiphany through God. Believe me- I’ve done the sitting and waiting thing- it just doesn’t work.
What would make more sense- a writer that waited for a publisher to come and discover her book, or for the writer to contact publishers? No one will hand us our dreams on a platter- not even God will just hand us everything we want- we have to be spiritually ready and pray for it. Babies aren't ready for solid food, and even toddlers with teeth don't get fed T-bone steaks! God will feed us what we need when we can handle it. He's a really brilliant Dude.
Pray. Read. Attend church. Fellowship. Feed that flame within you. Dance around like your spirit is already on fire and the flames will grow. I’m wearing bunny slippers when I dance- just in case someone is making a YouTube video!

Beth Brubaker, Assistant Editor is a humorist poet and songwriter, and her day jobs include homemaking, writing, and paper and fabric arts. Beth's passion is the written word, and is developing ways of sharing her brand of humor with the world through poems, songs and stories. Don't miss Beth's columns and puzzles in every issue of Ruby for Women! You can read Beth's posts on her blog Footprints in the Mud at http://footprintsinthemudblog.blogspot.com or email her at bethatruby@aol.com.

Living the Old Ways ~ The Amish Culture by Daniela
Category: Special Blogs
Tags: Amish traditions

Visit Daniela's blog, My Little Old World, to see more beautiful images of Amish life.

My Little Old World

Mother's Day Brunch Recipes from Marilyn's Treats Tags: Mother's Day recipes brunch recipes spring recipes Mother's Day recipes Marilyn's Treats

Check out these sweet Mother's Day Brunch recipes from Marilyn Lesniak at Marilyn's Treats! You can visit her blog for more amazing recipes . . . visit our RUBY Recipe Kitchen for the links to all these recipes that would be perfect for your Mother's Day.

What is it about negativity that breeds confusion? I have had many negative words spoken over me. I have learned how to ignore them. I had to learn to let them go and remind myself that I am not that person.

I get that it's all around us and that we can't help it. It's from the media to our very own mouths. How can we stop being so hateful to ourselves? You know, I've had to deal with a lot growing up and I'm not dead. I'm still here. I hate when people talk about me in the past tense. I am here. I am living and breathing right in front of you.

I struggle with self acceptance. I struggle with battling with my mind. I know who I want to be and I know what I need to do to get there, but my negative mindset is becoming more of stumbling block than anything else.

I have fought hard to be here. I have fought my own thoughts of insecurities. I know that I don't talk like you. I know that I can't hear well and I know that I'm not tall and skinny. I am however smart, beautiful, inquisitive, and positive despite the fact that I could have a horrible and negative outlook on life.

I have certain people that I know that have spoken negative words over me and my life. They stick to the soul like glue. They leave a lasting impression in the heart. I wish people understood how harmful words can be and I think once they realize the strong impact they have on a person's mind then maybe they will think twice about it.

The power of life and death lie in the tongue. No one can tame it. I think God knew the damage just one negative word can do to a person. They embed themselves into the soul and take root. The tree doesn't produce good fruit instead it is breeding ground for hate, comparison, confusion, and neglect.

All it takes is one word to ruin someone's day or their life. Take bullying for instance, it all started with a single thought that lead them to speak the word over someone. You have got to watch what you say to people. You cannot take them back once they go out.

I know we say things we don't mean when we are hurt and angry. I know we let words slip when we are mad. I know that I have to watch what I say when I get mad because most of the time I don't mean them and I instantly regret the words I said after I spewed them out like fire.

I felt like I needed to speak out against negativity in the kingdom. There is so much jealousy and it's sad. I went to clear something up because I may get upset at times when I see other people being successful and then I am quickly reminded that I have no clue how long they had to wait. I don't know their battles. I don't know their frustrations. I have zero clue how long it took to get to where they are now.

You should be extra careful when you speak about someone and their new found blessings. You will not ever know the hell I had to endure to be here today. I will not hesitate to educate you.

If you want to read proverbs 18:21. I suggest you do it. I also suggest you be careful in your words and your actions towards the lost. They are watching us ever so closely. We need to set an example of Christ and His love for humanity. I urge you to read your bible and study all about the power of words.

So, in closing I want to speak life where death has made its bed. I want to speak health and wellness over you. I want to speak peace. I want to speak love instead of hate. I want to speak hope to your hopelessness. I want to speak with love and understanding to your situation.

I want you to know that life is hard and it's so easy to dwell on the negativity all around us. In Romans 12:2 we are told to renew our minds daily. It can be hard when nothing seems to be going our way. It can cause frustration and confusion. Also, in Philippians 4:8 tells us to think good thoughts.

I hope that you are encouraged and blessed by this blog. I know it is a long read, but it is going to be well worth it. I promise. I hope you have a beautiful day.
Even the Flowers Face the Sun Tags: Christian blog wisdom Creation God devotional encouragement inspirational
Funny how a simple walk up the pasture can reveal the wisdom of God.

I do well with pictures. When someone is trying to explain technical or difficult things to me, it’s better for all of us if they can paint a picture with their words, or show me a drawing. God knows this. He created me and is well aware of my idiosyncrasies and brainwaves.

As I wandered through the grass, I noticed the wild flowers. The sun was bright and lit up the pasture like a coat of many colors—yellow, lavender, blue, pink, fuchsia.

The yellow flowers grabbed my attention the most. Every one of their countless little faces, faced the sun—petals outstretched and unhindered, soaking up the life-giving rays. They took full advantage of the sun’s offering before it dipped behind the horizon.

And God spoke to my heart: “Even my Creation looks to Me, turning their backs on the shadows to receive the nutrients they need.”

My husband, Bruce and I are facing a pretty huge challenge. We’ve faced some big ones in the past, but this one’s a doozy. And there is nothing we can do about it, except stand firm in our beliefs and pray.

The flowers in their silence spoke volumes this morning. No matter how strong the breeze, they flexed and bent, but never turned away from the sun. They didn’t shake their fist at the sky and complain about the wind. They didn’t huff at the cow pies that littered their green carpet. And they didn’t scoff at their fellow flowers who seemed to be enjoying a calmer existence. They just kept their focus on that consistent sun that rises every morning to give them what they need.

I was encouraged: the winds of life are opportunities to learn endurance; the cow pies add much needed fertilizer that promotes growth; and the calm others enjoy, well, praise God they’re getting a break for awhile.

So, I’m taking my cue from the flowers, from God’s voice teaching me through His Creation: Keep my eyes on the Son. No matter what the outcome in this challenge, I know it’s all good. Whatever plan He has for us, it will be a good future, full of hope, and a great testimony of His goodness. (Jeremiah 29:11-13)

And if, in a weak moment, I start to wilt with worry, I think I’ll take a stroll back out in the pasture and sit next to those little yellow flowers … just to remind me.

Psalm 25:15: My eyes are ever toward the Lord, for He shall pluck my feet out of the net. (NKJV)

My prayer
Category: Member Blogs
My prayer for this national day of prayer is simple. I come before You, Father God and I ask that You forgive me of my sins. I pray that you hear my humble prayer as I present my heart, and my soul as I lay them down at Your feet. I pray that You hear and do as You please in this land. Oh how we need You!I pray that God has His way not only in heaven, but here on earth. I pray that He shows Himself strong once again. I pray that He guides our hearts and our minds once again. I pray that He leads our nation into a state of repentance. We need a healing to take place. We need repentance to take place. We are sick souls in desperate need of a Healer. I pray that the lost get found. I pray that the sick get healed. I know sometimes it feels like our prayers fall on deaf ears, but I promise you my friend, He hears us. The prayers of the righteousness avail much! So, don't stop praying for your family members. Don't stop praying for the revival that will set our souls on fire. I pray that we understand we need God and His direction. We are going to continue to keep searching and seeking out everything under the sun until we come to the realization that God is whom we seek. He is the only One who can take our brokenness and make us whole. I pray that peace floods our hearts and minds. I pray that worrisome souls find rest. I pray that rest will be given. It's okay to not be okay. You can't do it alone. You are loved. You are being relentlessly pursued by the Most High God. He will not stop until He has it all. Salvation has come to all you want it. Love came down and rescued you and I from the snares of grave. I pray that you understand that mercy is new every single morning. His grace is endless. His love for you has no end. I pray that which holds you captive will release you. I pray that which holds you down will remove its hold off you and your household. You weren't meant to be free! The Bible tells us "we shall know the truth and it shall set us free" well, later on we learn who truth is and His name is Jesus. He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. Once you find Jesus, you find freedom. You will find peace. You will find hope. You will find rest. You will find all that you seek in Him. I pray that God floods our hearts. I pray that when you read this that you are encouraged and find the peace you are so desperately searching for in this world. I ask all of this in His precious and Holy name,

King Jesus

“From the Back of the Crowd” by Lesley Crawford Tags: Jesus healing hope Lesley Crawford

As the crowd jostled and pushed, attempting to get close to him, she stood at a distance. She watched them as they laughed and chatted, shouting greetings to one another across the busy street.

She felt invisible. No-one welcomed her, or talked to her, or even glanced in her direction. It wasn’t that she expected them to acknowledge her; she knew her place- standing at the back of the crowd, on the outside, looking in. She hated it, but she was resigned to it; it had been twelve long years since life had been different.

Twelve years of sickness and suffering, of doctors and medicines, of hopes raised and dashed. Twelve years of being excluded and avoided and branded “unclean.”  Twelve years of wishing and praying, and hoping for a cure that would bring an end to her isolation. Twelve years of disappointment.

And yet she wasn’t quite ready to relinquish hope, because she knew that right there, in the centre of the crowd, was Jesus.

She had heard stories of the amazing miracles he had done: turning water into wine at a wedding, healing leprosy, curing blindness, enabling a paralysed man to walk for the first time ever. Surely if anyone could help her, it was him.

If only she could figure out how to get through the crowd to approach him. The thought terrified her. Surely someone would notice and send her back where she belonged.

Even if she did get to Jesus, what would she say to him anyway?  Why should he help her? And what if it didn’t work? She had literally tried everything else – there was no other hope.

She was distracted from her thoughts as the crowd suddenly parted and stood aside. A man made his way through to approach Jesus. He made it look easy.

Well, it was easy for him. She recognized him. He was the leader of the local synagogue. Of course Jesus would have time for him.

She could see that something was badly wrong though. The anguish was written all over his face as, close to tears, he fell to the ground before Jesus and pleaded with him: “Please come and help. My daughter is dying.”

Jesus’ concern and compassion was evident as he helped the synagogue leader to his feet and set off with him, reassuring him that he would come to help. It was an expression of such love and tenderness that her mind was made up.

She had to do this – there was nothing to lose. She had to find a way.

She knew there was no way she could walk up to Jesus like that – she wasn’t important enough – but she knew he was powerful – really powerful. Maybe just getting close enough to touch his robe would be enough.

She hurried along to catch up with Jesus as he strode through the town. Running along by the side of the crowd she overtook them all, until at last she was in line with Jesus.

It was now or never.

Before she could lose courage, she made her way through the people surrounding Jesus, she timidly reached out her hand, and she touched him…

And everything changed. It came over her instantly- a feeling that she had almost forgotten. The bleeding that had plagued her for so many years had stopped and she was well!  She could hardly believe it! She was clean at last!

But something was wrong. Jesus had stopped. He turned to the crowd. “Who touched my robe?”


At first she thought she might get away with it. One of his disciples tried to persuade him that someone had just brushed against him by accident. It was perfectly possible with the huge crowd pushing and trying to get close. But Jesus waited- he knew that it had been deliberate.

Now she wished she was invisible. She tried to blend into the crowd. What if Jesus was angry that she had touched him? What would the people say? She could feel herself shaking with fear.

Her heart was pounding and it felt like every eye was upon her as she finally stepped to the front of the crowd and fell, trembling, at Jesus’ feet. The words came out in barely a whisper:

“I touched you. I wanted you to heal me.”

She stared at the ground as she waited for his response. She had no idea what to expect. But then gentle hands lifted her head and as she looked into his eyes, she could see only kindness. He smiled at her.

“Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace.”

And as instantly as the sickness had left her, the shame departed. No longer an outcast at the back of the crowd, but someone loved and valued by Jesus. No longer “unclean” but “daughter”.

Thanking him, she rose to her feet and she went, in peace.

(based on Luke 8:40-48)



Lesley Crawford – I live in Scotland and work doing youth work with a Christian charity.  In my spare time I enjoy music, theatre, reading and writing.  Since August 2015, I have been blogging at http://lifeinthespaciousplace.wordpress.com/ and I write to encourage people that, whatever their circumstances, there is always hope to be found in God.


An Opportunity to Help a Friend in Need Tags: cancer prayer community support friendship

Help Sheri Diaz as she battles cervical cancer

My name is Sheri Diaz.  I am 46, live in Spring, Texas, and have been working as a Medical Assistant for the past 3 years.  I recently got the shock of my life with the diagnosis of cervical cancer.  I went in for a routine pap smear and the results indicated that something wasn't right.  About two weeks later, I went in and had a biopsy done and all three samples came back as having cancer cells in them.

 At first I felt devastated; my whole life seemed to be turning upside down.  But I had to get it together and figure out my insurance and how I was going to be able to pay for treatment.  I found out my insurance is preventative care only, and would not cover any of the treatment for cancer.  I am in the process of adding a supplementary insurance plan, but I will still be paying out of pocket for the additional premium as well as a percentage of the treatment.  I have scheduled my first appointment with the oncology gynecologist.  The doctors want me to have a total hysterectomy as soon as possible, so it is imperative that I raise the money quickly.  I won't know until after the surgery what further treatment will be needed. 

I have my husband’s full support as I go through this struggle, but all of my other family live out of state so I don't really have family to go to appointments with me.  My husband and I both work, but our income is limited. The money will help with transportation to and from medical appointments, medical treatment such as surgery, and medications, as well as living expenses because I will be out of work for a month or longer.  Any help you can give is much appreciated.

If you would like to help Sheri and her family with the medical expenses associated with her cancer treatments, please go to her YOUCARING Compassionate Crowdfunding page where you can make a donation.

You keep me sane
Category: Member Blogs
Am I too trusting?
Or I do deserve this?
I am sad
I am still not understanding this part.
I have a broken heart.

Things have been missing like time; where did it go?
I've looked
I've searched
I've come up empty
The sands have run out of my grasp; like water flowing through my fingers.

I said I wouldn't do this and yet I find myself here again
It's a never ending circle of confessions

I am on a teeter totter
It's a constant balancing act of trust
Am I doing this right?
I feel as I might bust

I am an empty vessel
I am a willing soul
I am always waiting on You

You restore
You renew
You redeem
You resurrect

I know trivial things may not matter to them, but to You they have meaning.
You take the time to hear me out.
You hear what I don't want to say.
You watch as I struggle to hide my pain.
Can I hide it at all?

What happens when I am like this?
When can I let it go?
Who can I run to?
Where can I find You?
How did this happen?

I am a mess of emotions, but You keep me sane.
I have a serious question
Category: Member Blogs
Tags: Life Dreams
Okay, I have a serious question and even I don't know what to do with this and I've been trying to understand it. So, without further ado here is my burning question.

Can people communicate through dreams?

I'm only asking this because this person has been trying to reach out to me and when they come to me in my dream it's like they are actually there in my room talking to me. I know it's weird. I don't know how many others experience this, but this person was distraught and needed my help with something. The person was around my age or a little bit older. I couldn't make out the face and the voice was muffled so I couldn't make them out. I keep having these dreams about this person several different types. And it's not always this same person, but several different people. I wake up from a dream and it feels like I've been asleep all day long. In these dreams we've hugged, laughed, cried, and talked about other things. This particular person has been coming in my dreams as of late. I'm not sure what's going on or why they feel the need to come to me, but whatever it is I need this question answered.

I have dreams like this constantly. I have full fledged conversations with people in my dreams and my heart sometimes aches after it's all said and done. Last night something came in the room. I honestly don't know who or what it was, but we both heard the high pitch scream and it was loud enough to wake us both up. I then couldn't sleep. I saw this tall shadow walking around in the room. I just figured it was the dogs. I woke up and looked there it was and no, the dogs were all snoring.

I quickly laid back down and I swear to you I felt something touch my leg. I moved over to Robert's side of the bed and I felt this being sit on my bed. I'm not trying to freak anyone out here, but these happen a lot.

To this person, you revealed yourself to me in the dream after it was said and done with so, I'm not going to call you out. You know who you are and I wish you would message me on Facebook. I'm not going to ignore you.
Man vs. Woman Hours by Beth Brubaker
Category: Member Blogs
Tags: work time time management

Time is consistent. We have clocks, time zones, and calendars to mark the passage of it and most people on this earth are all synchronized with time so that appointments can be made, plans executed, and rush hours avoided.

However, there are other types of time that have yet to be fully understood. One is Man Time, and the other Woman Time. These times are never the same when one is away from the other. Let me explain.

When a woman and a man are together (especially if they're married), their clocks synchronize. 1:00 pm is 1:00 pm, and there is very little deviation from the world timeline. A Man Hour is the same as a Woman Hour. But if he needs a part or a tool and has to go to the store, or is involved in ministry? Times, they are a changin'!

'I'll be back in an hour, Sweetheart' can be translated to these timelines:

Hardware store: 1 hour = 2.5 hours per project

If he takes a buddy with him: 1 hour = 3 hours

Car part store: 1 hour = 1.5 hours

Or if he is a car enthusiast: 1 hour = 4 hours

If he is involved in ministry: 1 hour = 2 hours

If he runs the ministry: 1 hour = 6 hours

If he's involved in more than one ministry: 1 hour = 1 day

Using this chart, let's do a few examples.

Husband needs to go to the hardware store around noon. Don't expect him back until at least 2:30. If he has more than one project to shop for, you might want to make other plans to be out of the house- you won't see him until tomorrow.

The car needs a part. Husband goes to the car shop at noon, don't expect him to return until at least 1;30. He's probably waiting for the part to be delivered and is shopping for upgrades. If he finds the upgrades while waiting, it will take an additional 2.5 hours for him to install said upgrades in the car shop parking lot. Plan an early dinner, since he intended to be back for lunch and never ate.

Ah, the involved man of ministry- A dedicated man he is! If he's lightly involved in ministry and starts at noon, expect him back around 2:00 pm. It will take him one hour to do the work, and one hour to chat with the guys.

If he runs the ministry, he won't be home until dinnertime. It might have been a one hour small project at the start, but since so many guys showed up, he adds just a few more smaller projects, and maybe one or two bigger ones since they're here working anyway. And let's not forget he ordered pizza for them so they'd stay longer- and forgot to save you any, because you we're supposed to have lunch together.

And if that ministry coincides with one or more of his other ministries...let's just say you have the weekend all to yourself.

To be fair, there's also Woman Time. Depending on the circumstances, these times can change, but it isn't the same for all women. We like to keep the guys on their toes.

The woman's 'I'll be back in an hour, Sweetheart' timeline can look something like this:

Dutiful shopping (errands for the family like groceries, etc.) 1 hour = 1 hour

Dutiful shopping if there's a sale: 1 hour = 1.5 hours

Fun shopping (going to shop for herself): 1 hour = 2 hours

If she's a clothes horse and shoe lover: 1 hour = 5 hours

If she's a crafter: 1 hour = 4 hours

If she's a crafter 'just looking': 1 hour = 6 hours

If she's with a friend, multiply by 1.5

If she's with more than one friend, multiply by 3

If she's involved in a ministry: 1 hour = 1.5 hours

If she runs the ministry: 1 hour = 2 hours (because she has to clean up)

If the ministry is a social event: 1 hour = 3 hours

If the ministry social event has food: 1 hour = 4 hours

If she's by herself, expect to see her soon, but if she's with friends... You might want to call the guys in for a ministry project!

I'm just here to help, folks. Now when your other half tells you he'll be back in an hour and you know what he's involved in, you can plan accordingly. Just remember to apply your own timeline so you can at least see each other once before you go to sleep that night!


Beth Brubaker, Assistant Editor is a humorist poet and songwriter, and her day jobs include homemaking, writing, and paper and fabric arts. Beth's passion is the written word, and is developing ways of sharing her brand of humor with the world through poems, songs and stories. Don't miss Beth's columns and puzzles in every issue of Ruby for Women! You can read Beth's posts on her blog Footprints in the Mud at http://footprintsinthemudblog.blogspot.com or email her at bethatruby@aol.com.

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