Still Life of Lillies and Roses
by Mary Margetts, British 1841-1886
The Lord loves women so much that he gave special care instructions for them. Husbands are to love them as their own body and provide for them, (Ephesians 5, Ist Timothy 5:8) and children are to honour them (Ephesians 6). They are called the weaker vessel in Ist Peter 3:7, and there is a reason for that.
In our homes are different kinds of cooking and serving vessels. Some of them can withstand a lot of use and pressure, and others are can not. The weaker vessels are stronger in some ways, and their function is different.
One could argue that a china teacup appears to be weak and delicate, but can withstand a lot of heat. That same cup might not endure so well if it were used as a frying pan, but it is strong in its own purpose. Woman, though called the weaker vessel, is strong when engaged in the purpose for which she was created: to love their husbands and children, to care for their homes.
God gave a special provision for women in Titus 2 and 1st Timothy 5:14, when He allowed them to guide the home. There have been efforts to remove women from the home, and has resulted in troubled families.
Womens political movements have spent a century trying to be equal to men, and in doing so, men have quit regarding them as weaker vessels, creatures worth protecting and caring for. Some modern men have never seen a truly feminine woman, content with her work in the home. Growing up in institutions and schools, they saw girls and women who seemed the same as men in their purpose and activities. They have not grown up with Biblical grandmothers and mothers. They get their image of what women are supposed to be like, from what they see around them. Most men these days have female bosses and are surrounded by women in the workforce. They see nothing wrong with sending their wives to work. It looks normal to them. Men feel no shame in sending their children to daycare and their wives to work.
The womens movement has changed the nature of men. They do not seem strong, protective, masculine and brave. Men have become weaker because they no longer have to be the sole provider for the family. They have no unique role in society; nothing to make them hold their head high or improve their dignity, when women also earn the living for the family. There are few places in the workplace where women have not invaded. Work needs to be a man's world, and homemaking needs to be a woman's world. Husbands and wives can be stronger in their own ways, when they do not try to be alike in their roles.
Women must return to the home and men must take on the burden of providing for their families again. Working to be a provider builds up a man, and contentedly tending to her home increases the soft femininity of a woman. These are the opposite tedencies which are the main attractions between men and women. When husbands and wives both work outside the home, the wife will suffer a greater burden. She will be suffering guilt for leaving her children, and she will suffer anxiety for not being able to manage her home. Her health will suffer, as she can not get enough rest. She will loose some of her innocent sweetness, as she tackles the job away from home.
Truly masculine men will not ask their wives to go to work. They will try harder to provide for their families, or cut down on expenses so that their wives wont have to work. Manly men will tell you that when women are not in the workplace, they get their jobs done much better. Women going to work has complicated the way things are done in the workplace, and this has not been good for the men. Men are goal-oriented, and women are relationship oriented. The desire for relationships is what makes them perfect for wives, mothers and homemakers. They tend to be more sensitive to the needs of the people at home. Men, being goal oriented, just want to get their jobs done. When women are at work, they have to worry about relationships with these women, while trying to work. It is better for women to be at home, forming relationships with their own families.
When a wife takes over the burden of providing, the husband relaxes. There are men who have sent their wives to work, while they look for a job. Sometime, women are sent to work, only to find that their husbands become house husbands, staying home all day waiting for the mail, looking for an answer to a resume, or hoping for money to be sent to them. Instead of looking for ways to better manage their income or cut down on expenses, men want women to work so that they can keep up their accustomed life. A man who wants his wife to work, has shown a weakness in character, and a lack of manliness.
If you have children, the decision to stay home should already be made.
If you have no children right now, you need to realize that the moment you become a mother, your duty is to stay home and raise your own child. People used to do it in the past, before money and conveniences were so available. I, and others like me, remember mothers at home in days when life was a lot harder. A mother could live in a tent and still never be tempted for a moment to leave her children to pursue a career. She knew that she was there to be the major influence in her childs' life. Today,all our decisions seem to be related to money. Try thinking for a moment of other reasons to stay home. Don't let money rule your life.
There are husbands today who demand that their wives work and bring in as much income as possible. No one has the right to send a wife to work if she does not want to. God, the supreme being, has already mandated through his word, that women should guide and keep the home. Where God has already commanded, mankind cannot legislate. We do not need "permission" or "approval" from husbands or anyone else, to be the keepers at home that the Bible describes. Many women panic the minute their husbands lose a job, and start seeking employment outside the home. I lived in an era where men were often unemployed, because there were many jobs that were seasonal or temporary. Yet, women seemed to be able to adjust to this, and even expect this. Still, they didnt take matters into their own hands and get jobs. For one thing, jobs were usually available for men, and women prefered to be home.
What has happened to convince women to leave their homes to work? It has been a massive word campaign, which I called "word-ology" since the 20th century, to persuade women that they are being cheated by being "denied" jobs, or by "having" to stay home. When words are emphasised or twisted a certain way, people start believing lies.
Men need the responsibility of being providers. It gives them something to excell in, gives them pride in their families and gives them something worth living for. Work is good for them, but they need women at home helping to make that money stretch, and make a man's work worthwhile. When he sees her doing her best to save money and be creative and resourceful, it makes his burden lighter. Yes, women can stay home, but they need to make it a lifestyle that is simple and inexpensive, so that money does not go back out of the family coffers as quickly as it comes in. The family economy is an entire skill that each generation has to learn. It requires knowing how to make things from the raw materials and how to be innovative.
What used to be the inconvenience of temporary employment for men, has now become an "emergency" and women feel they have to fill in the gap. Men are now "falling back" on their wives, wanting them to work. If a woman will work outside the home, a man will let her. Women control their own destiny, by either following what the prevailing culture demands, or following the Bible.