Sunday, November 29, 2009

Proverbs 31 Illustrated

Helping Mother
by G.W. Brownlow  (1835-1876)
from Lovely Whatevers

For a beautiful illustration of Proverbs 31, please go here

I like the painting, above, which shows the interior of a home, and the generations interacting. It is as it should be


Anonymous said...

Instead of a Prov. 31 Woman I feel like a Slug 31 Woman. Why is pregnancy so exhausting?? It doesn't help that every time I try to work my heart goes haywire, skipping beats over and over and going tachicardic.

Does God understand women like me who are disabled ~ and made even more so by pregnancy? If we're doing our very best does it still count even if the house is never really 100% organized and clean? Our daughter (1 year old) is very happy and I cook our meals as much from scratch as possible. And I tr so hard to do my best, even when not pregnant. But I can never get it all done. I have to rest so often! ALthough I do have the ocassional day where I don't have to rest and it's so lovely to be up and about all day long!

I love my life. I love my husband and our child and our unborn twins (due end of January!) I'm so very happy and I don't take any blessings for granted. But I feel like a slug failure because, pregnant or not, I am so easily worn out. While pregnant... I'm always worn out hahaha! But my heart is what really keeps me stuck resting while pregnant. Resting, resting, resting, with so much work to do!!

Is there a place in Proverbs 31 for women like me with weak hearts and disabled legs and other physical things that get in the way? Or am I a failure as a wife?

Anonymous said...

I am so thankful to have many memories like that. My Grandmother sitting in our living room or kitchen, working on a rug, my mom bustling away at cooking, washing, and everything else that needed doing in a large family. When we came home from school, we knew our Mom would have cooked up a wonderful meal, baked bread or cookies, or washed our clothes. It didn't matter that the house was in a mess most of the time; Mom was always there. I cannot even imagine what it would have been like if Mom had not been there all day long. Just the fact that we knew she was at home, was a huge comfort and security to us. I am so glad she believed in doing what was right, not what the world did. We were not rich, did not have much, but we had enough. I would not trade my simple past life for a million dollars. I never regret that my mom did not go out and make a lot of money so we could have all the modern toys, and the latest fashion of clothes, or live in the best house in the neighborhood. I thank God for my family, especially my wise Mother and Grandmothers.

Anonymous said...

That was just lovely! Your daughter did a nice job on that post. (o:

Lydia said...

Check my blog list for A. Guy Maligned and his blog "What WOmen Never Hear."

Lydia said...

There is still a list on the Theme Article Section, of the interesting articles.

I will work on collecting the articles for the education for feminists, today, when there is time.

Anonymous said...

To the lady homemaking with a disability, there are several articles on that specifically cover this topic. Take heart and be of good courage, and don't flog yourself because you feell as if you're not up to standard. One thing that stood out to me in one of the articles dealing with this was that even if our disabilities pose limitations when compared to those without disabilities, even if a woman is unable to complete any task herself and needs to utilize home help, the mere fact of one's presence at home sets the tone and makes a difference. We don't serve a God who waits to crack the whip if we don't achieve what we think are His expectations, we serve a God who is loving, merciful and understands..........for His yoke is easy and His burden is light..........Glory to God for all things!

Lydia said...

There is a season for everything: a time to lie down and a time to rise up. Life is a series of stages: the childbearing years are a different stage of life than the older years of teaching younger women. Older women have different responsibilities than younger ones. The Prov. 31 verses are also sometimes likened to the different stages in life. Where as a woman might once have time to be creative or sew, there are other times in life when she cannot. Each verse can be a season in life. THat is one way to look at it . Most people who ware pregnant have to rest a lot.The women of old were cared for when they were pregnant and not expected to be very active.

Lydia said...

THe woman is responsible to guide the home. If she cannot do something herself, she teaches her children to do it. Lacking that, she may have help or may find a way of doing it that is more convenient. These days with so much automation, and all the excellent tools, there is no need to think you have get down on your hands and knees and scrub floors or wash walls by hand. The guiding principle is that you "guide" or delegate, and you are the master of your own home. Does not mean you have to do every single thing, and women of the past knew that. They sometimes hired girls from large families, to work for them. It gave them experience and it helped the poorer families have more income.

Anonymous said...

I think there's a reason wives are called the weaker vessel in the bible. It's probably not a favorite verse for most women, but it bears thinking about. RB

Anonymous said...

It really is so important to create good memories for our children, isn't it? For us, in our home, those memories are things like cooking good food...humble, to be sure, & we have our share of repetition, but my family tells me they enjoy our meals. We also love to work puzzles together, especially in the winter time. And once, when our son was littler, he said to me, "Mom, sit here with me & knit something, so it feels like home." And he patted the space beside him on the couch. That one line has become part of our family lexicon, as a sort of way for one of us to invite another to rest beside him or her. :o)

Each family, of course, will have different memories which stand out over the years, and that bring comfort to them. I think the important thing to remember is that someone needs to be home in order to achieve fact, I would even say it's impossible unless this is seen to first.

Anonymous said...

Wow, you ladies and wives and mothers are lucky to have wonderful memories of the elder women in your lives. I do, too, but not of my real mother, for she was always working or doing things outside the home. I remember baking gingerbread with my grandmother (an old-fashioned 1950's lady), or baking a cake or decorating aprons with my stepmother (also very old-fashioned and homey). It would have been nice to have Mom around, but she rebelled and wanted to go out to work. I love to be useful, but my heart is turned against so much working. I'm starting a home-based business so that I may get out of work (I'm only 27 and can't stand the typical work world), and stay home. There are still old-fashioned girls out there. And I read this blog nearly every day, too. :)

Lydia said...

Staying home seems to go back to the basic relationship between parents and children. If a child has been cooperative in youth, the parents enjoy having them at home. And if daughters were not so displaced (I call them displaced homemakers when they have to go out to work), by having to leave home because a parent thinks that is what they are supposed to do, they could stay home. The parents have to believe it is good for daughters to be home and the daughters have to honor the parents enough to be welcome at home. If this kind of interaction was going on, then, when there was a problem, such as unemployment of the husband, or a divorce, the daughters could return home. It all seems to hinge on the relationship you have with your parents and vice versa. I see that many homeschool families are developing this pattern, and that is good. The daughters can stay home til they marry and go to look after their own homes with their own husbands, and the parents benefit from having the grown children there. I think the best thing to do is prepare your own family so the next generation of women are not "displaced."Tell your children they will be home with you until they are married, and when they marry, you will help them stay home and look after their own family.

Anonymous said...

To the lady that is pregnant and resting: are doing a lot even when you are resting. Your body is growing 2 little miracles....and they are so worth it all!!! I understand as I have always been sickly during pregnancies that I was able to care to term and required a lot of help and rest. It can be discouraging but I think we need to be very careful of what we are thinking on......think on that which is good and it is good to be taking care of your babies!!!

Anonymous said...

When I was 17yrs. my father was pushing for me to become a secretary and go out of the home to work.
I really only wanted to be a homemaker like my mother, but that wasn't possible in my family.
I wasn't interested in boring jobs sitting at a desk doing paperwork all day so I decided to go into nursing.

I made it through the nurse aide program, but found that I really wasn't interested in going any farther in that field and when my then boyfriend asked me to marry him, I changed my major to homemaking. I regret not finishing the homemaking classes. I probably would have learned my homemaking skills a lot faster.

About 6 months later I quit school to get married.
I can say that I never missed not making all that money being a secretary or a registered nurse. I was happy with my little home and my husband was happy having me there.

We never had lots of money, but we were happy with what we did have.
We raised rabbits for meat, and had a lovely garden all year long because we lived in southern California.

I honed my sewing, cooking, gardening, canning and baby sitting skills during those first two years. I was well equipted and ready for a family when the Lord blessed us with a baby.

Years later when the neighbor women started going back to work in droves I stayed home and endured lots of criticism from them for 'not contributing' to the bank account and 'not finding myself'.
With all the work of raising a family, keeping my husband happy and keeping house and yardwork, I contributed plenty to the bank account by staying home. I did not pay a babysitter, or buy work clothes or put extra wear and tear on the family car.
I was much more creative then the women who went back to work, designing and sewing my own clothes and my childrens school clothes, even making clothes for the working women's children.

Anonymous said...


Your term 'displaced Homemaker' resonates with me 100%! How many girls and young ladies have found themselves in this situation, compelled by family to go out to work, to move out of home, to sacrifice all for the sake of 'Independance'! This is especially true of girls coming into their majority from the 70's onwards. This situation has oftentime been exhasibated by parents either who are atheist/agnostic and even those with the majority Christian ( especially) understanding. So many of us, good children, full of faith, were all but given our marching orders that the god of 'Independance' might be enshrined, by boomer parents who had disguarded their faith and peddled feminism and socialism/left wing liberalism!

the churshes let down these girls also, more often than not, refusing to preach the true message of Prov 31 and Titus 2, and not having a solid base of older 'titus 2' ladies or families that can provide a place of refuge and nurture of these displaced homemakers (of which i was one). Pray this trainwreck of 'lack of faith and insight' is recovered! Oh that I could have had another way opened up to me, so much pain and heartache would have been avoided.

Mary said...

It is sad that families don't live somewhat communally much any more. In the past, they were able to rely on and help each other. I guess it is just modern mobility -- children leave home and get jobs elsewhere (we did) and people practically lose touch with their families of origin. However, few of us work the family farm any more (and even here in farm country, one child runs the farm and the others move away because it doesn't take that many people to run a mechanized farm, unlike in the past when many hands were needed), but work in offices and things like that, and you have to go to where the jobs are. A pretty picture, anyway, thanks for sharing it.

Anonymous said...

I have observed that when things get tight and there are children in the family the women will often feel they need to help the finances out.

I have observed also that when they do go back to work their husbands will often feel relieved of the pressure to provide for the family and often looking for a better job or a job at all.
Then the wife begins to feel put upon to provide because the family has gotten used to a certain lifestyle and "can't" do without.
At this point divorces often happen because the woman feels she can make it on her own and her husband has become less attractive then the guys at work.

Before they know it the kids are teens and have gotten used to being on their own. Then mom coming home will interupt their activities. Also they get used to being 'bought off' with every gadget and toy. They continue to want more and more.

Ladies, don't paint yourself into a corner that is difficult to get out of. Stay your ground while you still have it and be the woman God wants and has designed you to be.

Because of alcoholism my grandmother worked in a factory when my father was a boy and his grandparents raised him. This I feel warped my fathers understanding of what a woman's roll at home was.

He felt I should go out to work at an early age and I was not permited to stay home with my parents. He was not happy when I married at 18 yrs. and my mother was terribly lonely when I left home. Their divorce followed three years later.

This caused my brother to lose heart and quit school. My brother was also driven out of the home before he was ready.

There is a happy ending to this story. My brother and I both found Christ shortly after our parents divorce and we are both dedicated to God and family. Both of us are grandparents today and still prospering in Christ.

Rachel said...

To the sweet pregnant lady--I had twins (identical boys) two and a half years ago. I was on bedrest for 2 months (from about a month after we found out we were havign twins, until they were delivered) of that pregnancy--at the time, I had an almost 3 yo, an almost 5 yr old, and a just-turned 7 yr old...and a husband in the Army.

You need to get help. This is part of why there is a church community. This is also why there should be Titus 2 and Proverbs 31 women. I had a really hard time asking for help from people when I was on bed rest (nothing like being told one can be vertical 2 hrs a day, no lifting anything heavier than a gallon of milk, etc--I'm sure you know all of that).

Seriously, though, reach out to your church. Undoubtedly there is someone there who can come and assist you. Perhaps a homeschooling teenaged girl who can come over and help every other day or something like that?

It is far better for you to take it easy now, for the health and well-being of your babies and yourself...that was the only thing that got me through it.

My older children did learn how to do laundry and dishes by hand, with minimal help from me. We had a much smaller house then, which made a lot of things easier to do.

And I will admit it--your husband will have to step up and take care of more of the housework that you cannot do. You will need to consider doing things like browning ground beef in larger amounts, and freezing what youn won't be using immediately, just so it is one step already done (spaghetti is easy to make, esp once the meat is done). Given the constraints on you, bulk cooking something like meatloaves, using one that night, and putting the rest in the freezer, seems like a good idea.

Sometimes, the best you can do is the best you can do. God doesn't want you to put your children at risk, not to mention yourself, so you can have a "perfect" home. Do the best you can, and arrange for the rest. Seriously.

((HUGS)) to you and your wee ones.

Anonymous said...

To the women exspecting twins. Please ask your doctor if you need iron supplements. When pregant with triplets I suddenly became exhausted after doing small chores.The doctor had forgotten to give me iron supplements !! Your babies are likely taking all your iron leaving you exhausted.The difference was like night and day .

Anonymous said...

This is for the woman pregnant with twin and caring for her 1 year old. Don't feel like a failure!! It is part of being physically run down that makes you emotionally rundown. I have six children, though none so close together as yours. I've been dealing with low energy for my entire 15 year marriage. Give yourself a break! You are working hard every minute while you are pregnant! Figure out the most important household tasks and focus on those. Let your husband help you with things. Shift your focus to being a cheerful presence in the home rather than making the physical house the focus. Work on getting and staying healthy. Google the "Brewer diet". Drink Red Raspberry Leaf tea. That gave me a real boost during my last pregnancy. Give yourself permission to rest, to nap, to take days off. I remember telling my husband I knew I was feeling better when I could stop to pick up an item on the floor rather than being too tired to bother. Congratulations on the twins!! And good luck!