Saturday, November 8, 2008

Why I Choose to Stay at Home..Part III

Duties of the Wife

This first one is the least favorite among most women. Submission. *AHHH* I think it's because Biblical submission is so misunderstood by the world's standards. The world considers it to be something that degrades women. They think it's something that sends women's rights back into the stone age. But you know, it's actually a wonderful place to be. And it's all about attitude. I heard once, and often repeat, that submission is 1% action, 99% attitude.
We are to submit to our husband. Ephesians 5:21-24 "Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing." To submit to someone is to give over or yield to the power or authority of another. And there's something to be said for allowing the husband to lead in "...every thing." The burden of responsibility is off of us (women). God does not hold us responsible if our husband leads us wrong. He only holds us responsible if we do not submit. This doesn't mean you can't have your own opinion on matters or that you can't voice them. Or even that you and your husband can't disagree. What it means, though, is that God knows that two heads make a monster. So he wants us (the weaker vessel) to yield that authority to the husband.

Next, we are to reverence our husband. Ephesians 5:33 "Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband." To reverence our husband we show a feeling or attitude of deep respect tinged with awe. We show him admiration, and adoration. We show him devotion. We esteem him. We give him praise, respect, and veneration. We don't want to bring him disdain or disrespect. We shouldn't scorn him. Again with the TV shows...we're constantly seeing how husbands are treated with disrespect and made to look like fools. The great guy you married is still in that man that you want to strangle every now and then again. If you want to bring a smile to his face, show him in private and especially in public how much you respect him and admire him. As in Proverbs 31, make him known in the gates among the elders. When my Bruce steps outside of our home, I want the world to know what a wonderful man he is. In almost 18 years of marriage, I don't know that I have ever gone to my parents or friends with our problems. I try only to build him up in front of others. Like a good friend of mine said a long time ago, what happens between you and your husband should stay between you and your husband. Because what you may be able to forgive and forget, others will remember. And I think one of the biggest mistakes a wife can make is going to outside sources, like friends and family, with marital problems. Of course if you're in a physically abusive marriage, that's another thing. I'm talking about verbal arguments and disagreements. Keep it between the two of you.

We are to love our husbands. I have heard several people say that there is nothing in the Bible saying we are to love our husbands. Only that husbands are to love their wives. But this is not so. Titus 2:4 says, "That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children." I know there isn't a command in the Bible to love our husband, but the older women are to teach the younger women HOW to love their husbands. There are too many girls getting married who haven't learned how to love a husband. They know how to love themselves. How to love their child. How to love their jobs. But they don't know how to love their husband. Love is more than a feeling. It is an action. We feel love to those we show love and give love to. We CHOOSE to love. When someone says, "I've fallen out of love" They're saying, "I choose not to love him/her anymore." Love is not always an easy thing to do. But I do know that when you show love and give love to others, it makes it easier to feel love toward that person.
We are to learn from our husband. I Corinthians 14:34,35 "Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience as also saith the law. And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church." This verse goes a lot deeper than just learning from our husbands. There are obvious doctrinal issues here. But God will show us things when we study his WORD. He will show us things when we sit under the ministry of our Pastor, our Sunday school teachers, etc. But he expects us to go to our husbands when there is something we don't understand. And you know, when we do go to our husbands about Biblical issues, it shows him that we value their opinion and their knowledge concerning God's Word. Not to mention, we become more like-minded with those we learn from. So when we learn from our husbands, we become more like-minded with him, which draws us closer together.
We are to be trustworthy. Proverbs 31:11,12 "The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil. She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life." It becomes a sad day when a husband realizes he can not trust his wife. If we try to conserve money, keep the home, take care of our children, etc, it makes him trust us and he worries less about things he should not have to be worried about.
We are to love our children. Titus 2:4 "That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children" How many more stories do we need to hear about mothers abandoning or killing their children? We have several foster children in our church whose mothers lives are in shambles and they don't love their children enough to change. The bottom line is, they need Jesus, of course! But you would think that even an unsaved mother would automatically know how to love her children. I'll be honest with you, I've been a mother for 16 years and I understand why some animals eat their young. LOL But, I love my children and one way to learn how to love them is to spend time with them. Teach them from scripture. Pray with them. Discipline them. Yes, I said discipline. Discipline is a sign of love. When you do not discipline your children, you are telling them you don't care how they behave and you don't care what kind of adult and citizen they will become. "Discipline in the high chair helps keep a child from the electric chair!"
We are to be chaste. Titus 2:5 "To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed." To be chaste is to be virtuous s*xually. We're seeing more and more Christian wives wrapped up in p*rn*graphy. We're seeing more and more Christian wives stepping outside of the marriage bed to find worldly pleasure elsewhere. We're seeing more and more Christian wives attending certain parties that sell certain items that help take away from the husband what is rightfully his. This is not chaste behavior.
We are to be keepers at home. Titus 2:5 " To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed." Notice that verse does not say we are to be keepers OF the home. But instead, it says we are to be keepers AT home. We discussed the virtuous woman in Sunday school yesterday and how she earned money for her family. She sewed, she bought and sold things, etc. But she also made sure her home and family were taken care of. She did not expect her husband to tend to the home and the children just because she was out earning money too. Her jobs outside the home never interfered with what God expected out of her as a wife and mother. But something else I saw in the verses we looked at in Sunday school was that she never was under another man's authority, except her husband. She was her own business woman. Everything she did to earn money was done on her own. The Bible says that we are to be in subjection to those that rule over us. When we step outside the home to work, we are giving ourselves over to another authority other than our husbands. We are expected to be on the job's schedule. Which sometimes will take us out of church or out of the home when we're needed. This will cause conflict. If you can work outside the home, be a keeper AT home, and still put your husband before your job, then I guess that's OK. I'm not going to say it's wrong to work outside the home. But Bruce and I decided a long time ago that I would be at home and this is the reason why. I take a job very seriously. So the only thing I refuse to do is be under an authority that will interfere with my husband's authority over me. I do not look down on those that work outside the home. I, myself, have worked outside the home and I have held some wonderful jobs. We made the decision for me to stay home just after I found out I was pregnant with our first child. Fortunately, God has blessed us to where we don't feel I have to work outside the home. My sweet mother works outside the home. She's a great business lady. She's a hard worker. But I can honestly say I don't remember her working outside the home until we were all grown and almost gone. I was 17, I think, when she started a job at a hotel. In just a couple of years she was traveling all over the East coast auditing hotels. By that time I was a married woman. But she and dad had an agreement about that job and if he had told her to quit she would have. One of my best friends in the whole world just went to work and I've been excited about her for it because I know she prayed about it for a long time and I saw how God opened the door for her. But I also know that the first time it interferes with her husband, her family, or her church, she'll give it up. And that is an attitude we do not see in most working women.
So it is not that I REFUSE to work. It is that I CHOOSE to stay at home. I can cook meals for those that are recovering from surgery, tend to children whose mothers are in need of a sitter, help take care of my parents and my mother in law in times of their needs, work at my church when Mrs. Janet needs an extra pair of hands, and that just names a few things I have freedom to do to help others without being tied down to a job outside the home. I may not contribute to the tax base income, but I do contribute to society.