GOOD ANSWERS FOR STUPID QUESTIONS

Women are deluged with emotional questions that challenge their every move.

“Do you work?” It’s a stupid question. Everybody on earth works. The Bible comments: “that if any would not work, neither should he eat.” (2Th 3:10) All of us should work. For you and me specifically as women and wives it’s a “no brainer.” Work never ends.

“Do you stay home?” Another insipid question; home is where everybody hopes to find comfort and affirmation and peace.

Where do you find the most significance, at home or at work? This is a “mean” question, you are wrong either way you answer it. If you find your significance at work, why aren’t you building your marriage and home? If you find your significance at home why are you remaining undeveloped; are you lazy?

But there is a third answer: “Yes”. The answer can be: “It’s the same. I have the same sense of significance at home and at work.” The Wise Woman in Proverbs 31 did it all. Her example is stunning. Because God has made you, gifted you and placed you, you can have the desires of your heart. (Psa 37.4) Some women do all the work at home, some work entirely outside the home, and some partly at home and partly outside of home. Like the wise woman, their priorities are continually adjusted.

In the Bible, Deborah the wife of Lapidoth was a successful career woman, the Chief Judge in the land. She was even asked by General Barak to go with him into the battle. (Jdg 4: 4, 8) But notice she called herself, “wife of Lapidoth.” She also called herself “a mother in Israel”. She was a powerful, famous woman. She made a difference. She could not have been “silently submissive.” My sense tells me she had help around the house. Yet for all of this she understood some roots of her significance came from being a wife of Lapidoth and a mother in Israel. Her husband was a blessed man: Deborah, Judge in Israel fulfilled her callings.

WHAT DO YOU THINK?
LEAVE A COMMENT
• Can parents feel good about rearing their children under the care of a Nanny?
• Is there precedent in Scripture for tutors or governors, governesses? (I think there is: Gal 4:2).
• How should the parents feel in the situation where both of them must work to pay the bills?
• Is it natural to feel “left out” if you stay home with the kids 100% of the time? What can you do?
• Do single dads have significance issues?

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9 Responses to GOOD ANSWERS FOR STUPID QUESTIONS

  1. Jessica says:

    Lizzie, as a mom who works part time outside the home, I can truly tell you this entry is so encouraging. I love my "outside" job, and right now I want to be working, and I also have to be to make ends meet, but I feel the guilt of not being home with my baby 100% of the time, and when I'm at home, I feel guilty for occasionally feeling trapped. The reminder of these strong biblical women models is very helpful.
    -Jessica

  2. Lizzie says:

    Jessica: We have the brains, the intelligence and the Holy Spirit, as Christians, to discern God's leading. Let's look to the LORD personally and we will be affirmed.

  3. Tonya says:

    Sometimes there is not a choice as to whether the mom works or remains at home with her children i.e. husband is disabled, mounting medical bills or other castastrophic circumstances, but most of the time there is. Lifestyle values, priorities and personal preferences, feelings of inadequacy or self-worth–the primary reason for working outside of the home needs to be determined.

    If it is determined that the wife needs to work outside of the home, she should still not "abandon" her children totally to the care of others. When she arrives home I hope she prays for the strength and energy to really BE with the children and to know them during those brief hours of the day. Women tend to want to do it all and if one is working full-time, I hope there are enough funds to hire help within the home. Sometimes the illusion of "making money" hides the fact that much of what you earn is actually being spent to cover "work" needs–wardrobe, car, gas, child care, eating out– and not really adding as much to the family budget as one might have hoped.

    I can't imagine this and have had the gift of being at home for 21+ years with our two sons. We have sacrificed quite a bit to enable me to do this since building family bonds (sons are 5 years apart) was a priority. To help make ends meet I am very frugal, I shop carefully (and with limits) and have two part-time businesses from home…the best of both worlds in my estimation. I have two more years of homeschool, then our plan is for me to work more, but probably just develop the home businesses from part-time to full-time.

  4. Lizzie says:

    Tonya:

    It's a topic with many facets. You have done well and found that powerful balance of caring for the most important people, your husband and children, and developing your interests. I hope to encourage girls to discover and develop the unique gifts every individual has. Some women live their whole lifetime and never know that there is something unique in them to offer to the world, their family and their husband. As Scripture would have it, we are accountable to God first, and then have the resposibility and privilege of working out our powerful position as a woman in the image of God, as a wife, a mother, and the Guide of the House. Finding our gifts and developing them in that context is a most fulfilling process.

    Thank you for your well thought out addition to this Blog.

  5. Tonya says:

    Trying to be a Titus 2 Mom…. :)

  6. Jessica says:

    Lizzie, yes, absolutely, to your comment! Reading through your posts was just a timely reminder to me that Scripture is my guidepost, not what the world/other people try to define as my role. When I start to lose sight of that is when I feel the pressure coming from both sides, since I'm in both camps of being home and working outside the home.

    @Tonya, I appreciate what you said.

    Having a baby has been the most amazing blessing and experience imaginable in my life so far, and he definitely came on God's timing (one year earlier than our semi-plan.) With no health insurance and with low-paying jobs, that was quite the journey in faith.

    My husband and I both love and find fulfillment in our work as teachers, and I find fulfillment in mothering, and I can't imagine life without either. As of now we really do have to have my part-time income. Fortunately my mom watches my son, we don't go out to eat unless we have gift cards, we bag lunches for work, and he and I teach at the same place, so we aren't paying double on gas and cars, and I think most people would be shocked at how small my grocery budget is, yet I still feed my family healthily and yummily. (That's definitely not a word, but it should be…) I am a big advocate of couponing and shopping sales; I get excited about saving money and get a kick out of showing my husband the receipt when I get home from the grocery store. Fortunately I also love to cook from scratch which saves money too. We are currently praying that we will get to the point that whether I work outside the home or not is a real choice. Right now I really do both want to and have to. I'm also blessed to be working in a Christian environment where my bosses love my baby like they're his family and understand that family comes first. Anyway, I love hearing what other people have to say about all kinds of issues, so it really was nice to read your perspective.

  7. www.SubmissionIsNotSilence.net says:

    Jessica:

    Your comment above: "I feel the pressure coming from both sides," is a sad commentary on our lack of respect for each other as Christians. I know that pressure. When I was busy, busy, busy with three growing boys, soccer, basketball, fund raisers, music competitions…a friend who worked full time said to me, "I don't respect women who stay home."

    As soon as we get a clear picture in our minds of what God has told us in the Bible, and how He is leading us personally (God speaks to us directly), we will be at peace with God, with our husbands and in our own hearts.

    Like the wise woman in Proverbs, we must balance many things…Phi 3:15…if in any thing you are otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you.

  8. Jessica says:

    I can't believe someone said that to you. I mostly get the opposite though, people horrified that I leave my child a couple times a week. My church home has a good mix of full time outside the home, part time outside the home, and all the time at home moms so there's a great amount of support there, and my team at work is all moms with kids at home. I think people just don't stop to think about the deep affect what they are about to say can have on someone. It's hard enough to follow what is right for your family and what God is asking of you in any given moment without people being insulting, purposefully or inadvertantly. Somewhat related, I dislike the term "working mom" for a mom that works outside of the home, because as you can surely attest to, that's such a misnomer.

    I was so excited to come across your blog. So much food for thought, rooted in God's word.

  9. Lizzie says:

    Jessica:

    These "terms" are thoughtless repeats of noncerebral secondhand doctrine… "working mom;" "stay at home mom." It is indication of a Church sick with their own kind of "political correctness." We can go to the LORD, go to Scripture for ourselves (let's read the Bible seriously, daily in our homes; it will be amazing as we read it from cover to cover, how much, how very much we will learn).

    Also, Jessica, we will gain the confidence to think for ourselves and be secure in it.

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