Saturday, February 27, 2010

On Earth, As It Is In Heaven

The famous prayer in Gethsemene asked that God's will be done on earth -- as it is in heaven. If women really want to guard their homes and make them havens, they have to think of ways to make the homes be a taste of  heaven. Heaven has no confusion or indecision about what is right. Heaven has no rebellion or disrespect. There is a continual wedding celebration (Revelations 19:9).  It has no ugliness, no despair or fear. Heaven has no discordant notes.  Poets of old have compared home to heaven. 

 The home is more than just a crashing place for people on their way to do something more important. It should be the center of life.  One reason that families seem so disjointed is because they are not regarding the home with heaven in mind.  Things should be done here on this earth, as they are in heaven.

If you have ever tried to get rid of the disruption of the rest of the world and retreat at home, you probably notice that the world doesnt want to leave you alone. It always seems to be trying to get in your life. One woman told me that when her first child was born, she and her husband decided not to have television in the home. Her set had broken down anyway, and it was a good chance to eliminate television.  "When friends noticed we had not television, they began bringing over extra tv's!  I had televisions come at me from all over the place!"  Finally, just to keep down the pressure, she accepted a television and left it in her garage.
The home should be made into a pleasant dwelling by every means possible, and may require  eliminating some noise or clutter.  Think of the home as the most glorious place on earth, a mirror of heaven.  If things are to be done on earth, as they are in heaven, then they must be beautiful, orderly and glorifying.

As it is in heaven, home life can be a resting place and a place of praise. Here are some ideas that might be of interest, in making the home heavenly:

1. Eliminate as much bad news as you can. Network television and radio broadcasts the worst news and demoralizes people.  The Bible says we ought not to talk about the things "done in the dark."  You may not think it effects you, but too much bad news eventually leads to depression and despair. If you constantly listen to what bad shape the world is in, you may lose hope. The Bible, on the other hand is GOOD news, which gives the solution and escape from such bad news.

2.Don't buy in to the despair of this world. Make every word pleasant and informative, but never shrink from doing right or teaching what is right.

3. Don't allow criticism of the homemaker. She is the light of the home. If you allow it to be dimmed, there is no guide for the day to day things in the home. Don't drive her away with criticism, blaming, condemnation, and lack of appreciation. Furthermore, teach children to honor the parents. This goes a lot deeper than just bringing her flowers on Mothers Day. It means to apply the heart to the wisdom she has taught regarding their life choices. It means not to offend or attack.

4. Clean house.  In the worst of times, it is doubly important to have a clean house. In the book, "One Small Woman,"  the story of an English woman who went to China during war time, she said, "If your house is dirty, clean it."  She was referring to the fact that you can always do something to improve life for others.

5. Decorate your house.  Even the poorest of people can clean and decorate. Putting up a picture, or bringing in a jelly jar full of wild flowers can make the humblest home a type of heaven. Decorating offers you the opportunity to put your own personality and love into the dwelling place place, by using an abundance of your favourite colours, and surrounding yourself in the things that you like looking at. The home is a woman's domain, and she should make it a place she would like to be. There are shops we love to be in because of the scent or the lovely merchandise. Think of that when you decorate your home. Try to put the scenes you like, in the home. Its your right and your responsibility. Women need to reclaim the home and make it heavenly by the way it looks.

6. Make your house smell heavenly. Cleanliness, good cooking, and the scents of nature can make a home blissful.

7. Dress up and fix your hair and makeup before starting the day, if you possibly can. It makes a big difference in how you treat others and your home. It makes a huge difference in the respect you get.

8. Don't allow arguing. There is a saying, "If Mama ain't happy, ain't no one happy."  The mood of the home largely depends on keeping the homemaker free from agitation and worry. Its so important to respect her God-given position in the home and not undermine it or ridicule it in any way. Don't upset the cook, for obvious reasons. If you want the woman to really do a good job at home, don't pick on her or make her job difficult. The woman has to establish rules about this. She is the one who will determine how she is treated. When people mistreat the homemaker, it is because they can get away with it. Homemakers need to practice being firm and confident with people. Don't allow anyone to interfere with your work at home.

9. Improve your home and your skills. Learn something new, and be creative every day! One reason I post crafts is because I believe that hand work is good for women and it is more productive than working at an office all day or standing behind a cash register at work. It gives you results you can see for years and years and gives others great pleasure.  Nothing is more reassuring to a family than to see the homemaker contented and happy, making pretty things from the home. I have shown the "Tilda" books here before. The author, a Scandanavian woman who lives by the sea, shows how to make small projects from quilt fabrics: a handbag, a teddy bear, doll, slippers, hat, apron, foot stool, ornaments for all seasons, fabric fruit, cloth wreath, storage bags and containers, envelopes, and little things that can be done on the spot.  She  loves the home and her books are illustrated in the pretty florals and shades of nature.  This book hearkens back to the old Simplicity sewing books that were made for the home, with patterns to trace, in the back. These little projects are perfect for the busy homemaker who needs some down time to rest and still get creative.  For those who do not sew, there is a host of other creative things you can do. I often show paper crafts for the non-sewer.

10. Teach your own children at home. Choose curriculum that shows some of the old ways. Having your own children at home, learning to be agreeable with you, creates a totally different atmosphere in the home. When children are discipled, rather than just "taught", their wills are  in alignment with their parents. They will be "wrought together." Sometimes women will watch a historical film, or look into the paintings of the 18th and 19th century,  and note the niceties going on in an ordinary day at home; the meal preparations, the taking of tea, a conversation with a friend, discussions about literature, or a talking at length about a great Biblical principle, real singing or piano music in the background while you wash dishes, walks in the garden, or "a turn around the room."  They long to reproduce this in their own era. This is the kind of life you get, when you homeschool. Your culture changes.   You CAN reproduce the life that our ancestors enjoyed, but it takes a different mindset to recreate it. THe Bible is our perfect example. Reading it will cause us to create heaven in our homes. If you homeschool your children, you will come closer to reproducing the "old paths, where is the good walk" because you will not have an invading culture coming into your own home every day. Your children will be content, and willing to learn, and your husband will feel that the work he does to provide for the family is not being dismantled daily by the deterioration of home life. If you homeschool, you wont have the extra conflicts in the home that create a cold atmosphere. There is no conflict in heaven.

1l.  Spend much time in prayer.  It brings you closer to heaven than anything.

For more beautiful cottage paintings, be sure to look at  where I will be adding more.


Deanna said...

Hi there,
I am new to your blog and I just wanted to let you know that I have been encouraged greatly so! I look forward to reading through some of your older posts as time allows.

Many blessings to you in the Lord Jesus,

Anonymous said...

What would we ever do without your profound words of wisdom? This was as fine as could be.

Anonymous said...

What we ever do without your profound words of wisdom? This was as fine as could be.

Anonymous said...

I am older now and married to an unbelieving husband since year two of our marriage when I repented of my sins and came to Christ.
My husband has not come to Christ yet and he did not allow me to homeschool our children. They are now grown and on their own. None of them has chosen the Lord either.
Now we have adult grandchildren who have not chose the Lord and are living a troubled life.
I remain hopeful that God can do anything at any time and continue to pray for them.

Let me just say the Lord is faithful! He continues to pour out grace in my life, and I find much encouragement from your blog Lydia.
I enjoy all the things you share for all the women and families. They are survival techniques that work and over the years I have employed many of them.
Bless the Lord, I am still learning new ones, gleaning things from the other ladies who also share.

Keep up the good work, the Lord has given you a wonderful ministry.
I will continue praying for you, your family and the ministry the Lord has given you all.

Anonymous said...

I would just like to say to the anon. poster who is worried about her grandchildren that I hope she continues to pray for them. After years of mistakes, I found religion at 35. I am sure my husband's grandmother and others were praying for us. Now, I pray for other family members who have not found their way yet. It is never too late for someone to change.

Anonymous said...

I would just like to say to the anon. poster who is worried about her grandchildren that I hope she continues to pray for them. After years of mistakes, I found religion at 35. I am sure my husband's grandmother and others were praying for us. Now, I pray for other family members who have not found their way yet. It is never too late for someone to change.

Anonymous said...


Although I enjoy your posts on papercrafts and other handiwork I feel that you truly excel in posts like this one where you share your wisdom. It took me quite a while to learn that we must have dignity in our role as homemaker and expect to be treated with respect. The feminist agenda has robbed women of this innate sense of their importance in the home and we mothers must pass this on to our children in word and deed. We must tell them why we have chosen our role and not just chosen it but embraced it. We must teach our boys to look for a woman who rejoices in homemaking!

Thank you, again, for your words of encouragement especially after a long week of the flu here in our little corner of the Pacific NW!

Unknown said...

Lovely post.

Anonymous said...

I am also in the same position as anonymous commenter at 10:13am is. This is my story completely too. Please be sure ..Very sure young ladies that your future husbands do share you love of the Lord and are totally committed to bringing Him into your lives. If he is a new Christian make sure he has time to mature and understand his roll as husband and father before he has to take up that role. You will never regret it. In the mean time you yourself can go forward in your studies and prayer. Also preparation to take care of the home. You will be togeher the rest of your life and you cannot imagine now what an influence his character will influence you and your children all the way into eternity. Make sure now to marry the right man with the right convictions. You cannot turn around and change things later. Yours and your children's futures depend on your thoughtful prayerful decision. You never want the sorrow and anguish of worrying about where your husband, children or grandchildren will end up. One wrong decision in this manner can completely change the course of your family's life now and for generations. The weight of worrying over them all and knowing what the Word says is almost unbearable. You always worry that you could/should have done something. The thought of having to stand before our Lord knowing your children are lost is the biggest regret of my life.

Anonymous said...

Here is an article at Lawrence Auster's website 'View from the Right' discussing an issue you've discussed regarding the safety of women in public:

Sorry to change the subject but thought you might be interested in reading this.


Lydia said...

I appreciate everyone's insight so much.

And, I think every older woman looks back wishing she had done some things different! But, how were they to know they would be fighting the prevailing culture and trying to keep it from stealing their kids? Their own grandparents and great grandparents probably didnt have to worry about it so much and this generation of older women has not seen an older generation above them having to beat back the world from their doors. So, it is natural that they would all learn from their mistakes and wish they had not made certain choices, or wish they had had the wisdom to train their children differently. however I think you are blessed by God if you speak up and warn others. And I think He recompenses you in many ways. I've known of whole families, generationally, that have come to the Lord and now the youngest generations are homeschooling their families, just because one grandmother urged them to. She taught them what was right, even though she didnt homeschool, herself. I think God blessed her for that, because her family all turned to God, even though they were far flung and unravelled.

Lydia said...

Thanks so much for providing that link. I will find a strategic place to put it. I know I got some mocking comments and saw some things people were saying about me in derision, when I posted the modesty article about women being alone in public. I still stand by my statement that if the parents take a daughter on a cruise, she will be a lot safer than if she goes with a group of girls her age. Its awful the way young girls think they cant be seen with their parents. This attitude has just got to stop: all the drinking and such among young women--its awful. And in America, it is not safe to let your daughter jog, even in a group, or hold out a car wash sign on the street. A friend of mine read that article and said that after that when she saw a girl holding up a car wash sign she pulled in and told her how dangerous that was, and asked her what her parents names were, contacted the parents and told them what she thought, as well as contacting the school or the business or charity or church that was promoting the car wash. They may continue doing it but in the back of their mind they will remember the person who warned them.

Anonymous said...

This article was very encouraging. I have very little support from my own parents in my choice to be home, and feel bombarded by bad advice to be more worldly. I am so thankful to be able to come here for guidance, encouragement, and godly advice. I will continue to pray for your good work here. Thank you again!

Anonymous said...

Dear Lydia~
Thank you for sharing with us younger women. You have helped me so much. I appreciate your admomition to protect and appreciate the homemaker. In my home, I am not appreciated and face constant criticism ~ unfortunately from my husband. The Lord (and you) have taught me how to face it head on with a smile - or at least a shrug. I do my best, I love the Lord, I love my children, I take care of my home, and I always make sure to have something nice to serve my man ~ in spite of the grumpiness and criticism.

What I do is "as unto the Lord." And I hope that my life reflects "Christ living in me." But coming here to your site is like getting a hug - or a thumbs up. You always encourage me.

Lydia said...

Homemakers can feel lonely and isolated. Christ must have felt lonely in the Garden of Gethsemane when his diciples fell asleep instead of tarrying with him as he wanted them to. Another thing about Christ is that although His gentle side has been elevated in modern times, He was quite firm and quite tough. He told people to back off sometimes and called some people "a brood of vipers." We can be Christ like but we have to keep in mind that being His follower requires us to be bold sometimes, and to do what is right no matter what. There are also husbands who can be hostile to homemaking, and sometimes it is because of the messages and the influence they are getting from their co-workers. They come home with a hostile attitude.

I hope that some of the people here on this blog will pray for the lady whose husband is uncooperative, and pray for him, too.

Anonymous said...

Dear Lady Lydia,

Thank you for all these inspiring posts. I love homemaking. My mother and sister are both heavily influenced by feminist thought and focus on work, and so I do most of the cooking, cleaning, organizing, decorating... as much as they will allow, anyway! It is such a funny situation, and I don't really know what to make of it.

But I do know that my dad really brightens up when the house looks nice. He enjoys doing all the odd jobs around the house, such as painting and fixing things.

I appreciated your comment about making an extra effort in homemaking during difficult times. It's just like in "When Queens Ride By." You think that working will help, or earning more money will help, when really it's the homemaking that helps, in the end, somehow.

Well, thank you for the inspiration. It really makes me feel much better about myself to read your blog and find encouragement for what feels right to me to do. Thank you!

Lydia said...

When Queens Ride By was a play written for a contest in the 1930's. It won first prize and later was put on film in a Loretta Young episode with the same title. I would sure like to see it again and hope someone will post it on You Tube.

It is about a work worn woman who thinks it is her responsibility to save the farm, so instead of cleaning up her house and caring for the children, or preparing meals, she takes it upon herself to do many of the chores on the farm that wear her out. A stranger's car breaks down near her property and she gets in a conversation with her. There was a change in the farmers wife after that conversation, in which the stranger tells her a story about a queen whose kingdom seemed to be falling apart. That day, the farmer arrives home to a clean house, with the table set and finds his wife wearing pretty clothes, happily making dinner. The children are clean and the atmosphere is very different than the stressful one he was used to. The story has been used in many marriage classes, with good responses. Most people remember the story within the story, about the queen, rather than the changes it caused in the wife's life.

Lydia said...

The story is under Theme Articles on the left side of this blog.

Anonymous said...

You are so helpful. Sometimes, I wish you could come into my home and show me where I could be doing things better. I think that is what our mothers(the older women) were supposed to be able to do for us. I sure hope I will be able to help my children when they are raising their families.

Lydia said...

If you all think you could stand a very direct lesson on the home, I may be willing to take off my velvet gloves for awhile and tell it. :-)

Anonymous said...

With "gloves on" or "gloves off", I have a feeling I'm right when I say that most of us women who visit here would be more than happy to hear & learn from whatever teaching you share with us! Your blog, Mrs. Sherman, is one of the first I check whenever I have any computer time; I have been uplifted, encouraged, chastened, & emboldened by your words. I do believe that you have helped me (and perhaps other women, as well) to see Home as the mission field that it is, & the care for, & ministry to, the family an important-even crucial!-one. I would even say that our work as homemakers has an urgency to it in our time.

My thanks for all the interesting articles, straight talk (firm, but kind!), & lovely artwork. How I pray that you'll keep it all coming!


Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for your blog. Your blog is one of the places I can go and get the "well done" on my decisions to stay home for the last 20 years, and homeschool my son for 13 of those, and cook and clean and make my home. I've known since I was 5 when I got my one and only dollhouse that all I wanted to do when I grew up was to get married and have a family and take care of my home. It has always proven to me that God has built into us a natural longing for homemaking. I often find it very interesting that when women ask what I do and I tell them, I get "that look" and when men ask what I do I get a "good for you"! Why is it that men know that being a woman in the home is important, but women think it's insane? So, blogs like yours are a good reminder to me that there really are like-minded women out there who care to be at home and take care of what God has entrusted to us. Thank you and please keep it going!

June Fuentes @ A Wise Woman Builds Her Home said...

Keep on teaching us 'younger women'---we need truly need the uplifting words!

candy said...

This is one of my most favorite articles! Simply excellent!


Jane said...

Thank you for your encouragement and advice. Your blog is one of the three or four I read and my favorite for inspiration and knowing that I am doing the right thing when most extended family members are against my decision to stay home. My husband is much more supportive than he used to be and I know it is the Lord's working on him these past 15+ years.

In regards to the "Tilda" books you mentioned, would you have specific titles I could look for at the library?

Blessings to you,

Lydia said...

"Sew PRetty Homestyle" by Tonnie Finnegan--or something like that.