Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Steadfastness at Home

One of the signs of a true commitment to something is being steadfast and confident, unmovable. There are some things which may challenge a homemaker or undermine her confidence:

Criticism.  If you are not doing evil in the sight of God, and if you are determined to do the will of God, there is no reason to let criticism stop you. If you are peer-dependent, criticism can have an effect on your mind, creating self-doubt. Spending too much time trying to convince others that the path you have chosen to follow is the good way, can be unhealthy, if it robs you of the time and concentration you need for keeping house. Debating and arguing can cause nervousness, lack of focus, and sleeplessness in some people. If you have written something on a blog or on paper that states your purpose and your personal creed, it is easier to let someone read it and think about it, rather than allow them to engage in too much controversy with you.

But foolish and unlearned questions avoid, knowing that they do gender strifes.
And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient,
In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth;
And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.
2nd Timothy 2:23-26


In every era of time, there have been people who want to destroy anything that is good and lovely. If they saw happiness sitting on a fence, they would knock it down. If they saw virtue walking in a garden, they would corrupt it. If they saw innocence playing with the sunbeams, they would try to blot out the sunny spot. Some people are so unruly,  ill-mannered and poorly taught, that they feel it is their mission to criticise any progress, any creation, and any good idea.

Those who follow Christ are not supposed to argue, but they are supposed to teach. To teach, you must show, and tell. If you have older children who are critics of your role in life, they need to work right along with you and make life easier for you. When someone begins to argue, hand them a broom, or a basket of laundry.  Children will learn quickly not to argue with their mother if they are put to work as soon as they begin to criticise.

 "Mark those who cause division and offenses contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned ," the apostle Paul wrote to the church of Christ in Rome, "and avoid them."  Romans 16:17   Some women have found it to be more effective to show a good example of a homemaker being busy at home, than to defend herself to those who only wish to accuse or quarrel. Avoid situations that bring on stress or reduce your ability to concentrate on your home.

Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.
First Corinthians 15:58

Pressure from others to find a job outside the home. Use any pressure, suggestions, hints and demands to "go to work" or "get a job" as signals to do something positive and beautiful in your home, for your family. One lady I know responds to such pushing by baking a pie. "If you keep talking like that, I'm just going to have to bake another pie!" she jokes. It keeps her from getting into a serious conflict, and lightens the mood of those who are insisting that she bring in some money.  She makes the home a better place.

Use pressure also as a time to list things that need to be done at home: Is the house clean, and orderly?  Can you easily locate things you need?  Are you completely satisfied with your housekeeping, or are you always wishing you could get "caught up."  If so, there is no time to "go to work" outside the home. Note:  a woman has already gone to work, if she is a homemaker full time. When someone attempts to quarrel about the matter, just mind  your own business and do something on your list, or catch up on some sewing or some other unfinished project.

Any pressure you feel from others, or any uneasiness they give you, can be used as a motivation to make some progress in your home. If someone makes a rude remark because you are wearing a dress, just sew some more and wear them more often. If someone makes a critical remark about  what you find to do all day,  treat yourself to something  that gives you rest and recreation, or something you have been wanting to do. Try not to spend much time feeling wounded or depressed. Reward yourself in some way by improving your home or doing something interesting.

When there is pressure from others, dig your heels in even harder and stick to your commitment
 to the home.

Taking Tea
by David Emile Joseph de Noter

 It is important to note that a woman at home already has a job, she does work, and she does help the family income, by doing many things herself that would otherwise have to be purchased or paid for at twice the price or more. A woman at home is a second income to her family. As she cares for the family posessions and cleans them and guards the wear and tear on things, she helps prevent more money going out to replace things. When a house is neglected, things can deteriorate, which costs money.  A homemaker is a guard of the home and and guide of the family, ever watchful for waste and inefficiency and constantly on the lookout for wise bargains.

If pressure is coming from the husband, the wife can use it as an opportunity to be a good help-meet to him by gently reminding him of her commitment to Christ, which comes first in her life, and of his duty to be the provider and to protect her from outside demands, so that she can be a good wife and homemaker.  If he is responsible for putting pressure on her to go outside the home to work, his own life and health will suffer, for under stress, a woman will not be able to truly serve him and give him the kind of home life he really needs. 

A homemaker needs to calmly explain that there is women's work and there is men's work. A 70 year old man that I know, who is a widower, says that while his wife was alive, they never got their two roles mixed up. "She was the wife, and I was the husband. She was the homemaker and I was the bread-winner, and we never got the two of them confused.  She did not tell me what to do in my work, and I did not tell her how to run the house." When a homemaker is being pressured to take on extra work outside the home, for money, she can simply explain that she is tending to the women's work, and that it is his job to tend to the man's work of providing for and protecting the family.

Radiant Path
by Greg Singley

 If he is pressuring her to "get a job" (note: she already has a job), or "go to work' (note: she has enough work to do at home) or "make money" (note, she already adds to the family finances by the little things she does to guard her husband's income and mulitiply it and make a dollar stretch), then he is surely injuring his own self. If he puts pressure on her to "work" (note: housekeeping, homemaking, raising children, showing hospitality, and looking after her husband IS work), then he loses the best part of her that would serve him and make his life more bearable at home. 

 To pressure a woman to leave the work already assigned to her by God (Titus 2:, Ist Timothy 5:14), is to assume superiority over God's word. To insist that  a woman go to work is to insist that she have more than one job. Homemaking is a many-faceted job, as it is, for it involves such things as being a purchasing agent, family banker, social director, manager of household duties, laundress, cook, nurse, dressmaker (if she sews and makes her own clothes), interior decorator, gardener and yard maintenance person, office worker (paying bills, correspondence) gift-giver, and more.

Evening Sun
by Mary Dipnall

 A homemaker will often look after the family car, taking it into the local shop for regular maintenance, washing it and cleaning it out. A homemaker will answer the phone, answer the door, answer the mail, and answer the email.  Some women are involved in sending Bible correspondence courses from World Bible school, to remote places on the earth. Others take time out to do needed things for the local church of which they are members.  When dedicated homemakers leave the home to enter the work place, the home suffers a great light and a great loss.

Learn to give good, sensible responses to those who would pressure you to leave the position of homemaker that you love: "Just let me finish up a few things, first," responded one woman I met. "Then I will get a job somewhere else."  She posted her list on a bulletin board and began to work through all the tasks she set before her.  There is always a long list, for when the routine work of meals, dishes and laundry are done, she has to go through old clothes and de-clutter her house, ridding it of things they no longer need, or keeping track of the family pictures and memory books.    "A man's work is from sun to sun," the saying goes, "but a woman's work is never done."  She should never have an extra burden of work heaped on her if she has a husband. A man should be the provider, a woman the homemaker.

If a husband is worried about money, he should try to cut back on expenses and not jeopardize his wife's ability to stay home. Many men get temporary, part-time jobs, when extra money is needed. As far back as many of us can remember, men worked, and women guided the house, even back when wages were very low and expenses were much higher than they are today. Many of us grew up on homes with fathers who proudly supported their families, and mothers who managed on whatever provision the men were able to supply.

Washing Line
by Helen Allingham

 And that ye study to be quiet, and to do your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you;
That ye may walk honestly toward them that are without, and that ye may have lack of nothing.
1st Thessalonians 4:11-12

Changes in circumstances: It is always reassuring and somehow stabilizing to know someone who never changes her commitment to the home, even when there are upheavals in the family, changes in the income, re-location of the family home, or change of husband's job. These steadfast women keep doing what they always have been doing, and "abound" (increase) in their capable care of the house and the family. When they have to move from place to place, due to their husband's job, they set up housekeeping as quickly as possible, putting things in place as they were before in their previous home, and making people feel at ease even in a strange place.  She does not panic if there is a change in the family income or in circumstances, but stays steady on her course to be a happy homemaker.
Ministry : Sometimes when the husband wants to enter a church ministry, women fall under the pressure to work temporarily, to support them while they become ministers or missionaries. There does not seem to be an exception clause in the commands concerning women who become members of our Lord's body. Some women reason that since it is for the cause of Christ--for "ministry", then it is okay with God if they work outside the home and become providers while their husbands pursue ministry.  However, the women in the church were told to live differently than women outside the church, and as such, were to work quietly at home. While worldly women would be rushing to compete in the working world, the Christian women would be paying attention to the house, knowing that to neglect their husbands, neglect their children, and neglect housekeeping casts a negative light on the Word of God.  (Titus 2:5) 

A husband returning to school for specialized training in his particular field (or a new career) is also something that should be planned for: he should first make arrangements to give his wife and children financial security, and find some way of supporting them so that the wife can stay home. Even though it is temporary, it does not excuse them from rearranging God's plan for a man to be a provider and a woman to keep house.

Before a man goes into ministry, he needs to make provision for his family so that his wife does not have to work outside the home to support his ministry. The husband needs to find some source of support, so that his wife can get on with the business of being a good example as a wife, mother and homemaker, and influence other women to do the same.


In the Garden
by Helen Allingham

No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.

Housework that is never done. Homemakers should take daily messes and daily work into their stride, and treat it as normal, or they can become discouraged. Some women even reason that since they are not good housekeepers, they should go to work outside the home. While that can be expected of women who do not know the Word of God, it is not an excusable ignorance in Christian women, who need to be an example to younger women and an influence on the world outside of the Lord's church.  It is really sad to know that there are people who are "looking for a church" but when they find one that teaches the true gospel, they find also the women going out to work just like the women of the world. 
It is not necessary to flounder around wondering what to do to get your home in order and your work finished each day, because there is a host of help available.  Study about different aspects of homemaking and learn to be an expert in some areas, so that you may enjoy it more.  There are several free, on-line homemaking and housekeeping courses you can take, which will help you learn a routine for  managing your home, and there are numerous books you can purchase on the subject of home making. 

Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.
Ist Thessalonians 5:21

Kitchens Should Be Used
(photo of my house)

 Women are to guide the home, that the Word of God be not blasphemed or discredited. (Titus 2:5)  In order to "prove all things"  we must live them as though we believed in them, not just try them out until they become difficult or inconvenient.  Becoming workers at home is more than staying home. It takes a great deal of thought and planning. It means doing it with the whole heart.

I have attended ladies church lectures where the speaker suggested that it did not matter if a woman actually looked after her own home, as long as she saw that it got done. She could dictate from afar, such as the telephone, while employed somewhere else, and get someone else to do it.  Any woman could direct the home from a place of employment, but it would lack her presence and her personal touch.   We need to get our Ladies Day speakers to address the issue of the home, homemaking, caring for a husband training up children, and teaching wisdom from the home. Our homes are where we, as a nation are hurting. We need to focus on making home the center of family stability, of hospitality and evangelism, and of creativity.  It has been years  since I've heard an older woman teach these things in a Ladies Day Lecture. Women need to be encouraged to have a clean,neat house and to teach children to be well-mannered.  This takes much, much time, and cannot be done if the woman is not dedicated to her home.

Life as a homemaker is not all work. Homemaking is more than cleaning or putting things in order. It is estabishing customs and creating a culture, using your own talents and creativity, through leisure time. It is embedding your personality and presence in the home by your special likes and preferences. Sometimes being a homemaker is simply sitting still in your living room, just observing the atmosphere and being the lady of the house.

Those outside of Christ do take note of how Christians live, and look for hypocrisy wherever they can find it. If women claim to be Christians but do not follow His Word, it can be a bad influence. A good example is part of winning others to the way of life that is in Christ. We are supposed to care what kind of reputation we are giving Christ, the church and the home. If you believe in something, you can do nothing short of living it.
There is a good opportunity for ministry in the home. The family is the greatest mission field, and God has wisely set the woman in a place of influence and teaching for her children and for others in her sphere. Children need their mothers to nurture them and teach them the Bible and to help them relate it to their daily life.  It is here that a woman learns the most and gains the most experience in ministry, for homemaking itself is a ministry of love, done ultimately for the Lord.
  Press here to print this post.

Spring Blossom
by Jon McNaughton

Steadfastness means unchangeableness. A woman who is dedicated to her home and family cannot be persuaded by all the winds of change in the culture around her. There always have been "wars and rumors of wars" and always have been threats of "collapsing economy", and there will always be changes in employment, moving to different locales, and changes in the lives of the family members. Through all this, a woman can stay the on the same course, to guide the home and maintain it. When someone says, "Now that you have no children at home, what are you going to do?" you know that your work at home will always be there and can respond that you'll be doing more of the same, with some special interests thrown in. You can confidently say that your work at home is not finished. There is no reason that modern women cannot live in the same confidence as the followers of Christ have done in other centuries. In many ways, we are richer today, and staying home is not the hardship it was for some people. We have an easier and more comfortable task than previous generations.

Note: I am not sure if this includes the comments, which are often full of gems worth printing also.


Holly said...

I really needed to read this. I thank you for the words of inspiration. A lot of people that I know do not understand why I am "just a homemaker". I gave up on explaining myself to them a while ago. I feel so blessed to follow my God-given calling; They just do not even begin to understand...

Anonymous said...

Funny, if we bake pies outside the home in, say, a bakery or restaurant, for money, that is ok; if we bake them at home for our family, that is not ok. I once knew a couple of women who were pressured to work outside the home, because they were made to feel that staying home and caring for their own children "was not doing anything." When I asked them what they did now, they answered, "elementary school teaching," and "working in a day care center." It is ok to mind and teach children, as long as it is other peoples' children, for money, but not your own, at home. Both then paid other people to babysit their children or to day-care them, so they could go to work teaching or minding other peoples' children! Smart!

Shonni said...

I’m not sure if I have ever commented or not? I am the blesses mother of 13, 10 of whom have come home through the miracle of adoption. I want to thank you for your commitment to speak the truth about the beauty of the role that the LORD has given and women. And I must also THANK YOU for your commitment to encourage women in their roles and home nurturers. I read every post you write, some times more than once and always am encouraged in my jobs here at home. I am also encouraged in our family’s ministry to each other and to the children that the LORD brings to us from brokeness and aloneness (orphans).
So Thank you so very much!!!

Rightthinker said...

This is a truly powerful post! Not because of hate, vile and snide remarks retorted, but because the power in the role of biblical womanhood is given by the Lord.

There is a power in submission to the Lord and the role of woman, that those who choose to rebel and tear down will never understand!

Thank you for this lovely post!

Lydia said...


Its also "okay" if you do volunteer work outside the home, as many people pressure homemakers to do. But apparently not acceptable to volunteer to look after your own home and family full time!!

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for this post and your blog, Lady Lydia!

I learned the hard way not to let others tear me down and to walk away from their debates as it is often times not possible to change their wordly views.

I have been pressured to volunteer full time as well. It seems like many identify themselves with work titles and how much money they make, so when we say we are homemakers, they can't understand why we choose not to make money or give our all to charities full time.

Anonymous said...

A very timely post for me. Thank you, LadyLydia, for speaking truth.

Laura Ashley said...

I need advice on decorating an apartment. The number one problem I have is cannot make any holes in the walls because I rent.

I tried to hang a full-length mirror in the bathroom using adhesive strips. After just a few minutes the strips loosened and the mirror fell and cracked! I haven't wanted to try those again with picture frames or anything because that mirror was a gift and I was upset it broke.

Also curtains. I can't hang curtains. There are blinds that came with the apartment.I tried these tension rods from Wal*Mart. They worked on the smaller windows only. And they look terrible because they start to slid down over time and you can only use light weight curtains. I would really like the heavy energy-saving curtains.

I would like the place to look nice and decorated, without too much clutter. I'd be thankful for any advice.

Anonymous said...

I think you wrote this in response to my last comment. Thank you. I think I will read and study this so I can be thoughtful and proper in my responses about my resolve to be a homemaker instead of a breadwinner. I'm too tired to start a new career after raising so many children. And there is so much I want to do to care for our home and grow our food and mentor our grandchildren. Thank you again, dear Lydia. said...

You just have a way of putting things in a way that leaves no argument. I always am encouraged to stand firm after visiting with you.

Thank you for this post. I like the cheerful and practical tips like, "I'm going to have to go bake another pie." I will print this out and keep a copy for my daughters to read. God bless you.

Anonymous said...

I'ld like to share a memory. I learned (much later) that my father earned $80 a month in the military during WWII, and that $20 went to his exwife. My mother frequently told me (during the 60's) that I should save my pennies/change, as "frequently the change is what bought us groceries" (during WWII). I was astounded at how quickly those pennies, nickels, and dimes mounted up, and bought many pretties for my husband and I while he was away in Viet Nam. Later I learned that my grandmother (my mother's mother) had lived with her and my (older) sister during WWII while Daddy was away, in order to save money. But to my knowledge, Mamma never worked outside the home until after Daddy had passed away. An EXCELLENT lesson for me.

Kathleen in IL

Anonymous said...

Lady Lydia:

May I also add that now I'm an "older woman" (I'm in my 60s), I can really appreciate your post here? I so wish I had made different choices as a younger woman. As it is, I am blessed to be able to be a homemaker in many respects and value it SOOO much.

Kathleen in IL

Linda said...

Thank-you so much for this encouraging post. I am 56 yrs.old and my youngest is 18.She will finish home-school this year. People don't understand when I say I will still stay home after she graduates. I feel I still have a home and husband to care for but most people don't understand. Thank-you for making me feel better.

Lydia said...

How is it that the early pioneers that settled our land knew better than to send the women away from home to work, and yet our modern world which has made homemaking so much easier, seeks to pull women out of their homes, and send them elsewhere most of the day. Some women think they will be bored if they stay home but if they really are cleaning, cooking, shopping, laundering, sewing, doing the family office/paper work, going to church, etc. there isn't even enough time when you stay home, to do all that needs to be done.

As for those whose children are older and now have their own homes, you still have to catch up on all the things you put aside while caring for children, and it is probably time to re paint and wallpaper the rooms, turn a room into a guest room, and more.

Anonymous said...

Since the Bible says about giving not to let "your left hand know what your right hand is doing" (Matt. 6:3), should it be anyone's business about what we give to charity, how often we give, how much we give, or the amount of time we volunteer, or what we do at home for others less fortunate? According to the scripture, this sort of information then should stay quiet, not be made public, and not be the subject of other's opinions about us. We do not need to justify ourselves for staying at home, by listing all the charity work or volunteer time we do, or excuse ourselves if we don't happen to leave home in order to volunteer for charities or give. The subject of giving, according to that scripture, sounds like it should be a big secret between us and God.

Anonymous said...

What you have said is so, so true! And encouraging! Please pray for those of us who continue to be steadfast at home without a husband. My spouse passed away earlier this year. With the Lord's great help I have been able to be home with our four children. God bless you.

Anonymous said...

I love your steadfast encouragement to be a keeper at home! It saddens me how the church doesn't even encourage ladies to be homemakers. I was so excited when my mom and I saw our new church at the time was having a Titus 2 ladies group at church. (I was an unmarried young adult looking forward to being married, having children, being a homemaker). However, all the women on the panel all worked outside of the home including the pastor's wife, who worked so they could have health insurance. I was SOOOO sad. All these young moms are suppose to be encouraged to be homemakers- yet all these older ladies all had jobs! I was SOOOO sadden by this. And the number of pastors that send their wives out to work is terrible too- to support them in the ministry. I know of one lady with two small children- including a new baby who goes to work and her husband pastor stays home with her kids. Feminism has really affected the majority of the church.

I am so thankful for you to keep encouraging ladies no matter how old or young to stay home and be busy caring for our own homes! Thanks Lady Lydia! You are such a blessing!!!

Sheila said...

To Anonymous 12:15:
The god of this world is the dollar. Don't be fooled into thinking that making money is the only value a person has.

Anonymous said...

Beautiful! You are such a blessing, dear cousin. I love how you write. :)

I determined to never tempt DH into wanting me to go work. I am satisfied with the 'bread' he wins and staying home and not having a car helps me save money for us.


Mrs. A

Anonymous said...

Lady Lydia,

I was wondering if you could address this topic. I see lots of new homemakers, especially ones who went to public schools or have left the workforce have a hard time not having an abundance of social contact. People who go to schools or work are use to having an abundance of social interactions all day long, which is greatly reduced while staying home. How does a person adjust to less social interactions? I see some my friends having playdates almost everyday filling in their need for socialization. I think it seems excessive. But daily socialization is what so many women are use to. Having husbands only home in the evening or weekends can be a hard social adjustment, even if you do have children. I am currently homeschooling my children and raising future homemakers and would like them to have a more balanced social life, so that when they are keepers at home, they don't have such a hard time not having so much social interaction and that they don't feel the need to have people over all day long everyday. We personally have get togethers a couple times a month at most (less on months where the colds and flus are going around). And my children play with each other the rest of the time. And weekly they see grandma's and often get to play with cousins. I would love any advice on what a good amount of socializing would be and how to avoid excessive socializing.

Anonymous said...

As a renter, I would like to make a few suggestions to the poster who cannot put holes in the walls of her rental, but wants to make it look nice.

I would suggest that she get some bookcases where she can display books and use the top shelf to put some photos, lamps and other decorations. To decorate the walls without leaving holes, there are hooks made by 3M (sold at places like WalMart) that stick to the walls with adhesive. I don't know if they are sturdy enough to hold heavy frames, but they certainly can hold things like a small wreath of flowers or other seasonal decorations. She can also look into getting one of those "faux" fireplaces that run on electricity, to give a sense of home and to have a nice mantle to use for displaying treasured objects. They can often be found for under $200 at discount stores. She could also look into getting some of the adhesive wall borders that are like contact paper and peel off easily. Little touches like fancy towels hanging in the the bathroom or a nice apron hanging on one of the 3M hooks in the kitchen add a sense of home. A pretty quilt on the bed is a nice touch. Also, renters need to pay more attention to things like lighting and area rugs, which are two inexpensive ways to really change the atmosphere of a rental.

For the window issue, I would speak to the landlord. I have never heard of a rental that does not allow for proper curtain rods. However, if the landlord does not allow that either, then look into the roman shades that one can make with fabric. There are books and some patterns that show how to do this. If that is not going to work for you, reconsider the tension rods, but look for lighter weight curtains. Cafe curtain styles in particular work well with tension rods and add a lot of charm to an apartment. They are very simple to sew. If the rooms are too light to sleep with such coverings, consider a sleep mask, which block out everything and can be found at dollar stores for $1. Oh, and speaking about dollar stores, another thing you can look into are the decals that are sold there and elsewhere. They can be rubbed onto surfaces and removed later. I rubbed some sayings on the wall over my daughter's bed, that say things like "Dream". It looks adorable and does not damage the wall.

I have a neighbor who found some semi-transparent adhesive in a lacy pattern that is sold in sheets online. It can be cut to fit windows. My neighbor used it on a tiny window that is built into her door to give added privacy. That might be another thing to consider for places where privacy is essential, such as bathroom windows.

I hope these suggestions help. I'm sorry if this is long. I just wanted to throw out my best ideas as they came to me!

Anonymous said...

This article by Audrey Broggi, "This Women in Ministry Thing" is primarily about women in ministry outside the home, but here is the part about her staying home while her husband was a seminary student for a Master of Theology:

"My husband received his ThM from said school in 1988. I was busy helping him, keeping our home, raising our two toddler boys, giving birth to our daughter and subsequently our 3rd son. Yes, that would be 4 children in all – yes in seminary – and yes without my seeking employment outside the home and yes, we were determined to do it God’s way. We somehow didn’t think while preparing for a ministry profession we should practice a lifestyle inconsistent with Scripture. What a novel thought. Oh, I earned some extra income Proverbs 31-style from the home but neither my husband nor I were willing for me to give up my primary ministry in the home. How could we teach others to obey God if we saw ourselves as 'exceptions' during our seminary years?"

Lydia said...

Thank you so much for the quote by Audrey Broggi--wonderful! Yes, it can be done. Also, you do not have to be out of debt or have certain things in place in order to stay home. Most people have some debt, including house and car payments, but the women can stay home anyway.

Lydia said...

Yes you have to be careful not to let people get you defending yourself or answering questions.

The one who asks the questions controls the situation, so, instead, I would suggest you creatively learn to ask questions back, in order to change the subject, or , if you really have a good point you want to get across, put it in the form of a question, and put the burden of thinking on them, rather than letting them tie you up in knots.

Anonymous said...

Another wonderful and encouraging post--so needed right now. I feel that our standard of living is so high that many cannot even imagine how people of centuries past survived. In order to stay at home you might need to ask yourself if you have to have that nicer home, that second car, cable TV or cell phones. When I was growing up-not that long ago-my parents were determined that my mom would stay home. We had one car, no home phone and lived in an old farmhouse. My mother sewed the things we needed and grew most of our food. We were very happy--I have such wonderful memories of those days at home with my mom and my four siblings. I wouldn't trade those days for any material things I could have had as a child. This was during the 70's and 80's and I remember recessions and my father losing his job twice, but my mother remained at home.

Lydia said...

In answer to the privacy of charity and giving, I agree. It is a primate matter, and the only way to shut the mouths of those who constantly demand to know what charities a person supports, is not to tell them.

As for socialization for homemakers. One of the problems is the shift of social life to the business world. When women went to work outside the home, their social life took place at work. Not only did they fellowship their co workers all day at work, but they met them for activities after work, and sometimes went on vacation together. The homemaker is left out of everything because she has been marginalized by the rest of the world, and stuck in a corner by herself.I remember being a young mother at home, and how long the day seemed, and there was no one to even chat with on the phone, for even the elders wives and the preachers wives were working. They would not understand the need of the homemaker for fellowship, because they had all the social life they needed, from work.

It sometimes takes a generation to create the kind of fellowship you need. Grown children become your network and support, but it takes time,. and the investment in it begins by making them your allies early in their lives. Finding others who enjoy the same things as you, can be difficult but not impossible. These homemakers are busy, too, so finding the right time to socialize with them does take some effort. but it can be done. Taking time out to attend events and functions sponsored by other homemakers and homeschoolers is worth it. We've gone to a regular Pioneer Party each autumn, and been able to let our daughters see other daughters year after year and now they keep up a friendship in their adult years, so that they need not be without fellowship.

Anonymous said...

Just an observation: I've never understood these women who "support" their husband (financially) while he finishes his education, only to find themselves divorced after they do him this service. They say they were doing the biblical thing by being a helper to their husband in this way, and that is all they got for it!
When my brother wanted to go back to school to become a lawyer, after starting his family, he did it by winning scholarships, and getting paid a full salary while he did this. His wife didn't mind him changing careers, but it was up to him to find a way to do it.
When my husband lost his job, twice, he went straight out the door the next morning to find the next one - and worked full-time seeking a job, until he found the next one. I never said, "Well, now that you're home, I could use a hand around the house". I said, "You just continue working from 9 - 5 at finding your new job, as if nothing happened, and I will see you home for dinner in the evening". He also knew that he had complete freedom to move us anywhere he needed to go in order to continue his career, and he has done very well because of my cooperation and moral support - not my financial support! He is actually extremely proud of what he has been able to accomplish, and this makes him a very loving husband in return.

Lydia said...

That is true: women who work to suppor their husbands during school time sometimes find that they never are allowed to quit work at all. It becomes necessary as they learn to depend on her income.

I know a lot of the men at church whose business went broke, but the men just looked for something else. Their wives kept on being encouraging and helped them find jobs, but they never took over the role of their husbands.

In being a helpmeet, it does not mean to do his job for him, which is to be a provider. Her job is to make the best use of his earnings and to make him look good and make the family do well on that money. And it is not all about money , anyway. It is about holding on to principles.

Anonymous said...

I have left this question here before, and got some good advice from readers. What do you do about the men who threaten to divorce their wives if they don't put their children in public school and get a job? Is it scriptural to threaten divorce? Is it scriptural to divorce if the wife does not get a job with a paycheck?

Hope said...

This post gave me much needed encouragement. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Women need to be an example by staying home, no matter what changes occur. The world is watching to see how a woman interprets the Bible, and her life shows that definition!

Anonymous said...

To Annon. Who has faced threats of divorce re education choices for the children/not persuing a career, these men need to constantly remmember their end of the deal re Ephesians chapter 5:

""Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;. "

(Eph 5: 25).

Threats of divorce are disgraceful and any man who threatens this course of action due to issues re the Biblical mandates over the education of our children and our role as Christian women, wives, mothers ought to be ashamed of himself. If he claims to be Christian, it is high time that he kneel in repentant prayer before our heavenly Father, ask forgiveness for his hardness of heart and abdication of his role as leader, guide and guard of his household, leading as Christ led - a leadership of humility, service and submission to his head - Christ.

Men reading this who wish their wives would enter the workforce, acquaint yourself with God's truth. Secondly, recognize the invaluable role your wife plays at home, children or no children, and realize that things are not the mark of success; the flash house, motorcar, designer labels, the latest tech toys etc; these are WANTS and NOT needs. For the peter pans out there, grow up and stop playing into the feminist ideology. It may claim to stand for choice, but in reality, the only choice it respects is the choices that it sees fit for women (and men) to make - Hypocracy pure and simple.

Lydia said...

That sounds like Mrs. Eliot in Sydney: always so forthright and fearless. Thank you for your thoughts! We miss you if you don't come here regularly.

Lydia said...

I hope there will be more comments on this subject. I am planning a new post so please comment while this is still current.

Rightthinker said...

I agree with the previous comment from anon.

Men who threaten divorce are asking their wives to disobey God.

In His Word, the Lord has commanded us clearly to be homemakers. In 1 Timothy 5:14, in Proverbs 31, in Titus 2:5, and many other chapters and verses, the Lord clearly shows a woman's role and clearly displays a husband's role.

Never will God contradict Himself! Therefore, any man who is demanding work for pay from his bride, is asking her to go against God's word. No man of God would do such a thing, so he needs to examine his heart, to see if he is walking in the faith!

Divorce is not a tool of chastisement..where we use it to discipline and modify behavior.

It's interesting that people who do not understand biblical submission are the first to use it as a tool of manipulation on others. God's perfect plan of the role of husbands and wives, does not include tyrannical reign of husbands. His role is to submit himself to the Lord, to thereby love, protect, honor and provide for his wife..not to shackle her in chains of lies and manipulation so that he may be lazy and a feminist.

This is the distorted view of submission that has been spread like a disease by feminists, and it most certainly is NOT acceptable in God fearing marriages.

Anonymous said...

Right Thinker at 1:20PM,

John 13: 6-11

To start with, then read

Matt 20: 25-27
Mark 9: 35
I Peter 5: 3 (read vv1-4 inclusively of chapter 5)

These for the most part may be considered by some as chiefly pertinent to ecclesial structure and authority, but as the family is the 'domestic Church' a microcosm of the Divine portrait of Christ and His Bride, the abovementioned passages ARE entirely applicable to the role, right and responsibility of the Christian husband. Tyranny is NOT an option. Would-be tin-pot household dictators need not apply - and those who twist the Word of God to fit their UnChristlike machinations may wish to stop awhile and consider
Malachi 3: 2


Ephesians 5: 21 “"fit in with" each other, because of your common reverence for Christ.” It is no surprise that the Appostle Paul prefaces the following verses concerning the inter-relatedness of husbands, wives and their roles under the Divine model for family with v21. (Eph 5: 22-27) Too often the segment from 22-25 is lifted out of context with no reference to the surrounding material.

pastors, especially pastors of churches that most would consider ‘dangerously’ conservative, be sure you preach the WHOLE TRUTH for not only women, but men also, for the WHOLE TRUTH guides and guards men and women both as sons and daughters, dear ones of Christ Jesus who endured the shame of the Cross to reconcile a fallen, sin-sick world to our heavenly Father.

Men, the original Latin root word ‘oboedio/ire‘, from which we have received the word ‘obey’ refers to listening with intent to outwork and live out the thought, truth, idea proffered from the speaker to listener. It DOES NOT refer to a mandate of servitude that robs the 'obeyer' of their Christ given dignity as created in His image or counted among His flock. Men and women, along the narrow walk, there is no room for ego, power-tripping, tyranny or self-centeredness. Is this easy, given our human propensity toward concupiscence (the tendency to, without Christ, take the destructive/unhealthy/sinful option)? No. However, with Christ, all things are possible. Phil 4: 13.

Tragically, a small number of those who suppose themselves to be Christian have not done any service to the biblical family and our God ordained spheres of activity by abusing Biblical truth, adding their own spin to suit their whim. It therefore behooves every Godly man and woman reading this to live out Christ's radical formula for life that in its authentic fullness completely obliterates both dreadful distortion and feminist misconception/misinformation.

An excellent and easy to navigate New Testament can be found at

Mrs. Eliot

Anonymous said...

Dear Lady Lydia

This post has so much rich advice and I have friends who could benefit from it RIGHT NOW! Please make this a classic post.


Lydia said...

Mrs. Eliot in AUstralia, thank you so much for the definition of obey in the scriptures. It has a connotation of cooperation and love, which is hard to define in this world. It also has a spiritual meaning that has to do with the love Christ has for his own.

Mrs. A. I will indeed put it in the theme articles on the side bar.

Anonymous said...

While you're making additions to the theme articles, I'd like to suggest that you collect your best homemaking articles in a separate index from the thematic articles. You have such wonderful ones! Can I start out by requesting the article about stocking a homemaking basket for the day?

Anonymous said...

What if the husband does follow through on divorce because his wife won't go to work or refuses to put the children in public school? Then won't she be in the same predicament as she would have been? (Getting a job and sending the children to school?) Except in addition to this, the children will be shuffled back and forth between two different houses, with the mother unable to care for them at the ungodly father's house, while they are exposed to who-knows-what.

What is a wife to do? Just trust that God will take care of all of her and the children's needs if her husband does indeed walk out on her? The courts in this country are unjust and no longer see that a husband must provide for his wife if he divorces her. Children get taken away from their "over-religious" mothers and are forced to go to public school...

What if the husband says his wife is being defiant by not "following his lead" and sending the children to school and getting a job to help him with the finances?

What does a wife in this situation do, under threat of divorce, when his family, the local church, all think that the husband can tell the wife to go to work if he wants to and that SHE should obey him?

These aren't just theoretical questions. They are happening in real lives, to real women and children.

Lydia said...

The problem is not that she is a homemaker and full time keeper of the home. That is not the problem. The problem is that the husband is threatening divorce or divorcing because he has invented a reason that is not really legitimate. It is not always possible to make the other person live a Christian life, and by divorcing her for such an unbiblical reason, he is in defiance of God. He is not in submission to the Lord, and if he is a true "leader" he needs to show the example of submission to an authority, himself. People do leave, but they have no justification for it and they have no blessing in it. If he divorces her, the best thing she can do is go live with her mother and find some sanctuary there. That is one reason why young people need to have a good foundation of family and a good repore with their own parents, and not burn their bridges behind them.

If he divorces her for unscriptural reasons, I can just about guarantee that the children's visitation to him will be neglected. If he does not care about her, he does not care about his children either. He will come and pick them up a couple of times and then have excuses. In that case, the mother is actually better off, because she avoids the bad influence of the father. She can have them to herself and teach them the right paths.

Don't assume for a minute that a man who will divorce his wife for such a stupid reason as her not being a feminist and bringing in a paycheck, is going to support the children, support her or even show an interest in his children.

When they come to visit him for the prescribed time, he will find it more difficult than he imagined, and extremely stressful, especially if he is hoping to find another woman. He will find that without their mother there, the father has to do a lot of the work--cooking, laundry, taking a sick child to the clinic, shopping. He is living the good life, free and easy at home, because his wife does all that, being the dedicated mother and homemaker that she is. But, without her, reality is really going to hit him hard.

Anonymous said...

If this is happening to someone, please have the husband call my husband for counselling on the phone, free. My email is Contact me and I will give you the number that the husband can call. I think any man who threatens divorce over such a thing is selfish and non sacrificial. The husband is supposed to be sacrificial,not demanding and seeking after money. The Bible says the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil, and calls it "filthy lucre." When money is used as a tool for breaking up a marriage, it is totaly being taken out of the realm for which it was intented. The husband is to work by the sweat of his brow and provide for his family. The wife is to be a keeper at home.

Of course the husband may not be a Christian and may not want to live under those rules. The Bible tells the Christian wife that the unbeliever is free to go, but he must not remarry. He doesn't have to live with her, but he must still "provide for his own."

If it is "happening everywhere" then the wife also needs to straighten up and do what is right. Its not right to abandon the responsibility of being wife, mother and homemaker. She must not shake her own foundation.

If a woman will stand by her beliefs and be as excellent as she can be at home, and know that it is God's appointment for her, according to the scriptures, she has no reason to fear or to worry. If a man can, sometimes he will "shake" her to see if she is solid on her foundation. If he does not believe the Bible, he may be trying to see if she really believes it enough to stand up to the threat against her. She needs to be kind but firm and go about her business and not worry. If he quits supporting her, she needs to quit making meals for him and quit washing his clothes and cleaning up after him.