Tag Archives: Balancing Work and Home

Work and have a home life too

This is one of a series of posts illustrating a beautiful portrait of humanity; of men and women who without even realizing it, strive to embody qualities Proverbs 31 embraces in all life areas – personally, with their family, professionally, spiritually, and in their love life too. Whether you’re a “Proverbs 31” man or a woman, you stand out from the rest; you’re a red rose among a field of yellow roses. You’re a man or woman of and for all ages, a role model of timeless strength and beauty, virtue and responsibility; a cherished life partner and a powerful entrepreneur too!

Proverbs 31:24
She makes fine linen garments,
sells them, and
supplies the merchants with sashes

As I mentioned in my last post, I had preconceived notions about Proverbs 31; specifically, that the verses were most likely written by male chauvinists whose fondest wishes were to confine women.  As I learned more about Proverbs 31 and about myself,  I was pleasantly surprised to experience first hand the true wisdom residing in these words. I was even more surprised to discover these words have been misrepresented by many over time – especially clergy – with unenlightened theology.  Rather than holding individuals back, these words actually empower both men and woman to take on greater responsibility within the world; many of which can be tackled from home!

Take for instance, Proverbs 31:24. In the first line, the Proverbs 31 individual is industrious, “making fine linen garments” from home. Doing their best to serve the LORD, s/he not only creates textiles from the finest wool and flax, but s/he also creates fine garments from them for family to wear.  Then in the second line, the resulting merchandise is so much in demand due to the quality of workmanship that s/he “sells them”, leading others to purchase and wear them.  The third and final line has the Proverbs 31 individual “supplying merchants with sashes” from home rather than from outside the home, freeing him or her to build and maintain a warm, nurturing home for loved ones!  As independent as I am, I have to tell you that this arrangement is far more peaceful than the hectic pace many experience nowadays. What’s more, the income generated from a home-based business may be put towards not only improving the home, but quality of life too.

Like many of you, I realize the economy is in a shamble with many out of work or underemployed. Now more than ever, the need to work outside the home is a necessity, not a luxury. If like me, this is your reality, then pray and ask our Creator to show you how to use your talents to generate as much income as you are currently making outside the home — or more — at home. While not easy by any stretch of the imagination, anything is possible with the help of our Creator. I’ve learned that all you have to do is ask.  In fact, some of the most successful businesses started from home and from a hobby or activity an individual was good at and really enjoyed, but never realized was marketable. For example, an acquaintance of mine sells custom-scented candles on the Internet. I know of another creative individual who designs and repackages fine chocolates for business events and special occasions. There are so many possibilities, such as those who give clarinet lessons; grow organic vegetables; tutor high school students in English or Math; sell homemade cupcakes; make quilts; or perform custom sewing and alterations — all from home.

On a personal level… when my sister married her long-time love a few years back, her flowers were arranged and her cake was made by women who worked from home.  I am another example with a home-based business promoting the community where I live along with area businesses.  I do this by developing a full array of marketing materials; everything from flyers, ads, and brochures to newsletters, booklets, and websites. Regardless of your talent or passion in life,  IT IS possible to create a marketable product or service from a hobby or talent you are passionate about. Once perfected with your signature touch, any product or service can be performed from home, sold from home, and even delivered to others for purchase or to “merchants” for resale from home just as the Proverbs 31 woman did. The goal always is to live life as a Proverbs 31 individual would…rather than leaving home to work elsewhere, allowing work to come to you from where you live… home. To achieve this is to experience a slice of heaven on earth. You not only have a more peaceful, more balanced lifestyle, but work and home are a pleasure rather than a chore.

Regardless of what you choose to pursue… be sure to touch base with our LORD regularly about your plans. He knows better than we do about what is best for us. Also, be sure to take time to study Proverbs 31. These verses are filled with so many hidden treasures on how to live a richer, more fulfilling life with your loved ones.  Finally… when you need to find a way to bring more money home, remember to ask yourself, “Is this challenge requiring me to supply the merchants, or to be a merchant?” The answer to this question provides much-needed direction.

Remember … touch a life today “The Little Way” by following the lead and need of others. Also, if you ever thought to yourself, “I wish my community, knew…”, then be sure to visit White Light Communications at http://www.tothewhitelight.com.

~ Theresa

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Balancing Work and Home

This is one of a series of posts illustrating a beautiful portrait of humanity; of men and women who without even realizing it, strive to embody qualities Proverbs 31 embraces in all life areas– personally, with their family, professionally, spiritually, and in their love life too. Whether you’re a “Proverbs 31” man or a woman, you stand out from the rest; you’re a red rose among a field of yellow roses. You’re a man or woman of and for all ages, a role model of timeless strength and beauty, virtue and responsibility; a cherished life partner and a powerful entrepreneur too!

Proverbs 31:13

She seeketh wool and flax and worketh willingly with her hands

In addition to caring for their home, life partner, and family, the Proverbs 31 individual is also a successful entrepreneur. In fact, s/he serves as an inspiration to other individuals as s/he is living a life that many only hope to one day… s/he is living his or her life purpose. S/he takes a huge risk in starting a home-based business designing and manufacturing clothing. Over time though s/he proves to be so successful that she eventually purchases real estate and builds a factory on it!

As the first line of Proverbs 31:13 indicates, “She seeketh wool and flax” as two basic materials for making clothes and garments for her household and for her business. Wool, as you know, is the curly undercoat of a sheep, which is woven into a warm garment or fabric. For example, today we wear wool sweaters or mittens to protect us from the cold. Flax is a fibrous plant. When its fiber is pulled and twisted into yarn or thread during the spinning process, the result is a fine linen from which a variety of garments and materials, such as coarse canvas, rugged sails for ships, as well as thin, delicate scarves, may be produced.

As the second line of Proverbs 31:13 indicates, “and worketh willingly with her hands.” I have to admit I found myself focused on the word, “willingly.” Nowadays, that word often has a negative connotation, being synonymous with”unenthusiastic consent.” For example, “oh ok, I will wash the dishes if I REALLY have to.” Yet work does not need to be viewed as boring or tedious. We in fact have a choice as to how we choose to view our work.The Proverbs 31 individual not only chooses to be cheerful and ready to work, but also derives much pleasure in working with her hands. As a result, her work is a source of great satisfaction. How refreshing this is!

For me, this verse is particularly meaningful as it also reminds me of how we have lost the fine art of working with our hands over time be it for calligraphy, sewing, stained glass painting, woodworking, or something else. Thanks to the computer age, we no longer seek or find pleasure in receiving homemade items or in creating things with our own hands. For example, rather than finding pleasure in making our own clothes, we now find delight in shopping for clothes at the local mall, often adversely affecting the family budget. Rather than sharing our gifts and talents with other family members, parents are connected to their computers, while children are often glued to a television show or to the latest video game – all without sharing quality time or meaningful conversation. What is most unfortunate though is that many talents are never developed or passed on. Mothers never learn how to cook, sew, knit, or crochet much less pass on those skills to their children. The same holds true for fathers who never learn how to fix things around the house, woodwork, work on cars, or manage family finances. As a result, these skills are never passed on from one generation to the next. An entire generation living without ever knowing or experiencing the true pleasure in working with their hands … even when the desire may be there!
And there is great pleasure derived … not only in working with one’s hands, but also in sharing the experience with others. I remember as a child watching my mother spend hours in the kitchen baking French pastries, or in the Master bedroom at her sewing machine making a costume for a play or a new outfit for an upcoming family portrait. I have fond memories of my uncle repairing a lamp at the kitchen table and my grandfather in the backyard taking delight in the beautiful rose garden he started when he and my grandmother lived in the home my family now occupied. Many beautiful crafts are now becoming a lost art.

I also recall my mother playing host to all the neighborhood kids in our backyard, joining us on the swing and serving refreshments. I also remember her being involved in the neighborhood Mother’s Club, where all the local mothers got together by day to exchange talents and by night to socialize. The neighborhood  seamstress would exchange her talents with the neighborhood pastry chef while the local gardener would exchange her talents with the local artist. Nowadays, many social connections are lost in favor of staying in and staying to ourselves. Never venturing out beyond our comfort zone, many talents remain hidden not only from friends, but from family members too.

Amidst tough economic times though we have a wonderful opportunity to expand our influence and our ministry as well as to reconnect with our family, friends, and more. The time is right to return to our roots; to shop for bargains, to use resources wisely, and to find pleasure in simple things… including in working with our hands once more. And when we do, we not only have a chance to develop our God-given talents, but we also have the opportunity to reconnect with others and to pass our craft onto a future generation. What legacy do you wish to pass on?

Remember … touch a life today “The Little Way” by following the lead and need of others. Also, if you ever thought to yourself, “I wish my community, knew…”, then be sure to visit White Light Communications at http://www.tothewhitelight.com.

~ Theresa

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