Friday, July 20, 2012

Working at Home for the Glory of God Part 2

“That at the first, at the beginning of everyone that ever was, there is this braving of the pain and no one tells you that this is the way it will always be now– because love is always worth the pain. Just ask any mother — love is a willingness to suffer.
Love is patient —  and patience is always this willingness to suffer.
Love is patient and patience is this willingness to suffer —  to put aside plans for a person, to lay aside self to serve, to set aside agendas to step up to an altar.
This is the work of a mother — this strange and peculiar joy in letting go of self to make the joy of another large”   Ann Voskamp

Scripture supports women being workers at home. Proverbs 31 is a great example of a hard working woman who manages her home well.

Prov 31:27-28
27 She watches over the ways of her household,
And does not eat the bread of idleness.
28 Her children rise up and call her blessed;
Her husband also, and he praises her:

Titus 2:3-6
 3 Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, 4 and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, 5 to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled.

1 Tim 5:9-16
9 Let a widow be enrolled if she is not less than sixty years of age, having been the wife of one husband,   10 and having a reputation for good works: if she has brought up children, has shown hospitality, has washed the feet of the saints, has cared for the afflicted, and has devoted herself to every good work. 11 But refuse to enroll younger widows, for when their passions draw them away from Christ, they desire to marry 12 and so incur condemnation for having abandoned their former faith. 13 Besides that, they learn to be idlers, going about from house to house, and not only idlers, but also gossips and busybodies, saying what they should not. 14 So I would have younger widows marry, bear children, manage their households, and give the adversary no occasion for slander. 15 For some have already strayed after Satan.
I think that if a woman did all these things, she would be quite busy and not lazy at all. About these verses Mathew Henry says,

“Not but there are occasions, and will be, of going abroad; but a gadding temper for merriment and company sake, to the neglect of domestic affairs, or from uneasiness at being in her place, is the opposite evil intended, which is commonly accompanied with, or draws after it, other evils.
1 Tim 5:13-14, “They learn to be idle, wandering from house to house; and not only idle, but tattlers also and busybodies, speaking things which they ought not.” Their business is to guide the house, and they should give no occasion to the enemy to speak reproachfully. Good, generally, in opposition to all vice; and specially, in her place, kind, helpful, and charitable; as Dorcas, full of good works and alms deeds. It may also have, as some think, a more particular sense; one of a meek and yet cheerful spirit and temper, not sullen nor bitter; not taunting not fretting and galling any; not of a troublesome or jarring disposition, uneasy in herself and to those about her; but of a good nature and pleasing conversation, and likewise helpful by her advice and pains: thus building her house, and doing her husband good, and not evil, all her days. Thus in their personal character sober, discreet, chaste, keepers at home, and good: "
I have been married to my best friend for 27 years today and a stay at home mother for almost 26 years now. I have no regrets. It is the hardest and the best job I have ever had. Working at home to train and teach my children and to pour out the love of God upon them has been a great blessing to me even though I am a sinner and sadly fail many times.  It is the hardest job with the greatest responsibility. It has been more fulfilling and brought me more joy and laughter than any career outside the home could ever do and also more tears and hardship. Yet the rewards are far reaching and will endure for all eternity. I am forever grateful to be the mother of all nine of my children. What a wonderful privilege to be at home with them all.  I love them so much and would do it all over again even if I never got praised or thanked, though I have been many times. I don’t deserve the praise my children and my husband give me. They are a blessing and a gift and a reward for sure. God has used my children to teach me so much and to humble me and change me into His image. I have so much to learn. I am thankful that God does not give up on me, my husband and my children. He continues to perfect us and change us into His image.

Phil Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. 13 Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, 14 I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

Our lives truly are a vapor. They are like the lilies in the field, here today and gone tomorrow. So don’t waste your life pursuing a career for yourself. Wake up America! Take responsibility for your own children. Moms, the most important career and ministry you can have is to love, care for, teach and train your own children. No one loves them like you do. Don’t give them to the world, especially to wolves, many of whom are dressed as lambs. Marriages and families are broken down and children are left unprotected while mothers pursue careers outside the home. Don’t waste your life living for yourself. Live for the glory of God by treasuring Christ as you serve your husband and children. Glorify God in your home for the joy of those who live there that they too may treasure Christ and live passionately for Him.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Working at Home for the Glory of God Part 1

2 Cor 5:9Therefore we make it our aim, whether present or absent, to be well pleasing to Him.

What we do in this life is based on what our goal or aim in life is. We make choices in life. Either we choose to please ourselves and live with self on the throne or we choose to please God and live with Christ on the throne. Ultimately, if we choose to live for self, life will be hard and we really won’t be happy. But if we choose to die to self and live for Christ we will be truly happy.  When we walk in the counsel of His word, we are blessed.  A wasted life is one in which we live for ourselves. I have made it my goal and aim to please God. That means dying to self because life isn’t about me. It is about Christ. My goal is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever. I agree with Caroline Mahaney who said, “My goal as a mother is that my children would treasure Christ and live passionately for His glory. As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”
 My ultimate goal is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever. By choosing to stay at home with my children I am glorifying God and enjoying Him. I feel it is the best way to train up my children in the fear and admonition of the Lord and to love my husband and my children and to be a good worker at home doing good to my husband. It is my joy and my delight to die to myself and serve my family so that they may know and love Christ. Unfortunately many women have been deceived into thinking that staying at home is drudgery and a waste and that a career outside the home, submitting to another man instead of their own husband is somehow more glamorous!  They also believe the lie that making money outside the home makes you more valuable than doing a hard job for no pay in the home. They even think that someone who does the same type of job for pay outside the home is suddenly more valuable than a mother who serves her husband and children in the home just because she earns money for doing the same thing for some one else’s children while hers are in day care. Mathew Henry so aptly words what many women think,

“Those whose home is their prison, it is to be feared, feel that their chastity is their fetters.”

Satan has blinded the eyes of so many. God has called women to be creative, godly women whose dominion is the home. Scripture supports that. TV, movies, media etc. distorts that. I once believed all those lies and was outraged at the thought of staying home with my children! I was so blind! I am so very grateful to the Lord for picking me up out of the pit, saving me and setting my feet on solid ground and turning my life around to point to Him and instead of myself. Life is too short to live for me. Children grow up way too fast for me to spend their childhood off pursuing my career instead of loving them and teaching and training them. It is the responsibility of the parents to train and teach their children. It is not the daycare’s or the government’s job. Life is not about me. Some people say that women stay home just to be able to be lazy and do nothing while their husband does all the ‘hard’ work! That is a lie! Women who want to stay at home so they can just be lazy are just plain lazy people who will be lazy in anything they do. They need to repent of laziness just like anyone else who is lazy on their job! It is an interesting fact, as Dr. Leonard Sax points out in his book, Boys Adrift, that it is the men in our society who are being lazy and not working and not being responsible. In fact even those who are calling themselves a stay-at-home -Dad, often don’t do laundry or cook or care for the children. Instead many women work hard outside the home and pay a nanny to take care of her children, a housekeeper to clean her house and cook her meals. Then she comes home to find her husband playing video games and not having done any work at home. Those who can’t afford a cook, not only work hard outside the home but come home to all the housework and taking care of the children and cooking the meals etc. Many women are just enabling their husbands to continue to be irresponsible by doing his job for him as well as theirs.  I think many men would step up to the plate if their wives let them, but that is another topic.  Back to motherhood and mom’s who choose to stay home. Motherhood is not for the lazy! It is not for the selfish! Working at home loving my children and my husband, teaching and training my children in the fear and admonition of the Lord, managing the home and serving others, is not drudgery. It is not a prison. It is not laziness. It is far from boring. But it is death. It is a death to self that brings forth beautiful life. It is a freedom to live joyfully serving others and glorifying God.