Monday, 5 December 2016

BUILDING OUR HOUSE



The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things; that they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed. Titus 2:3-4

Here, and in many other passages, the scriptures reveal the Lord's priority for the home in His kingdom, and the importance of a woman's role in the home. A woman who aspires to follow God's design for her role as a "keeper at home" finds herself on an enriching, yet challenging pilgrimage. Now more than ever, young women need the older women to come alongside, disciple and encourage, in the spirit of Titus 2.

Thankfully, the Lord has blessed us with many such "Mothers in Israel" who ease our journeys and faithfully point us to the basis of their wisdom, the only infallible rule of human conduct: the Divinely inspired word of God. And there we must turn, for in the absence of the anchor of Biblical convictions, we will be carried about by the winds of culture.

Never before have women, Godly mothers in particular, been besieged with so many conflicting expectations. In confusion we cry, "I wish God would tell me what He wants me to do!" In the counsel of scripture, we find that this is precisely what He did for the first woman - He directly instructed her in His will for her life. We would do well to consider His counsel to Eve. We usually think first of what God instructed Eve not to do, and there is surely a lesson for us in that. But first, let's look at what He designed her and instructed her to do: To be a helpmeet to her husband in fulfillment of God's command to "...be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it." (Genesis 1:28)

God desired for His magnificent creation to be brought to order, and designed for His purposes to be brought to fruition, through the family. God's perfect design still applies to us today. Still, a woman glorifies God best when she serves Him through her family, as a keeper at home.

How important is a woman's ministry in her home? It is so crucial that Satan's first line of attack was to turn Eve's heart away from trusting God's word - to deceive "the mother of all living" into doubting God's boundaries for her. This ancient ruse is still among the adversary's most effective deceits! What was the very first lie? That somewhere out there, beyond God's express will for us, is something more desirable and fulfilling.

When Eve reached for that beguiling "something", she began a turn of events which brought about the destruction of all her heritage. So potent was this lie that the fallen culture that resulted yet prevails, still beckoning Eve's daughters with the same delusion of greater fulfillment outside our calling as "keepers at home." But whenever we grasp beyond God's designs for us, we will ultimately come away with flawed fruit and a fallen heritage.

Perhaps Solomon was mindful of Eve reaching into the forbidden tree when he penned Proverbs 14:1: "Every wise woman buildeth her house: but the foolish plucketh it down with her hands." Just as Eve jeopardized her heritage by plucking down forbidden fruit, and thus overstepping God's boundaries, so all her daughters to the present day are vulnerable to the same foolish temptation. Mercifully, this Proverb also points us to the wiser alternative. The Hebrew word for "house" in this verse carries the ideas of a house, a home, a temple, and a heritage. Building these things is at the heart of God's purpose for a woman's life.

Surely God has given us His best design, and boundaries within which we will bear our best fruit. If a woman is wise, she will build her house into a home, a temple for her family, and establish a strong family heritage for God's glory. And only in that labor of love will she give her best service to the Lord. Let's explore some of the ways a woman can glorify God through "building her house."

'Building a house' suggests the need to bring structure to the place where family life is centered. God commanded the first homesteaders to subdue their environment - to bring order to it. We may therefore infer that in the absence of their diligence to His command, the Divinely intended state of order would not naturally occur. Thus it is with our homes! I'll be the first to confess a bit of a weak spot here - a peek under my unfolded laundry will usually reveal a stash of books and papers that beg for my mental priority. And after years of homemaking, I still often feel curiously surprised by the five o'clock shock that I must make yet another meal materialize!

But despite such natures, we are called to reflect our Creator, who is a God of order. Consider how He built the great house of the universe: in the first three days, He created 1) light, 2) sea and sky, and 3) dry land and vegetation. Then, in the second three days, He cycled back to the beginning and created 1) heavenly bodies for the light to inhabit, 2) creatures to inhabit the sea and sky, and 3) creatures to inhabit the dry land and eat the vegetation. Herein is a valuable lesson in bringing order to our own homes from the example of the Creator: we are most efficient when we plan our tasks, and cycle through them with reasoned and predictable repetition. When we are orderly and efficient, we may even have time to take a day of rest!

God is the consummate and original artist. He furnished the first home with exquisite beauty, surrounding Adam and Eve with the glorious abundance of His own garden. This suggests that our homes should not only encourage in our spirits the peace that comes from orderliness, but feed the souls of those we love with the inspiration of beauty as well. Beautiful things in our homes elevate our spirits, and bring to remembrance the Creator of all beauty.

The further we look into even the most microscopic realms of God's creation, the more order and beauty we find. God knew His children would thrive best in a world of order and beauty, and so we should provide for our loved ones a predictable and lovely home where they may thrive. by Lynn Pyles Bruce

12 comments:

  1. Thank you for sharing this, I truely needed to read it. I need to blow the dust off my Bible and start reading what the Lord has to teach me instead of feeling sorry for myself and asking him for some miracle answer.

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    1. Prayer and being in the Word can bring about miracles...keep praying and keep believing! Thanks for sharing a cuppa with me today!

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  2. How I would love to be a stay at home housewife. However, my husband is not a Christian and won't hear of it.

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    1. Wendy, we are called to submit to our husbands in everything except sin. Working outside the home is not sin. However, prayer can change his heart. We know we can pray about our desire to be a full time homemaker because it is in the LORD'S Will... Blessings!

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  3. A beautiful and needful post Glenys!
    God bless you,
    Laura of Harvest Lane Cottage

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  4. Beautiful post and reminder of God's very best for us! Thank you.

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  5. Absolutely! I agree with you! This is a topic which I am becoming more and more passionate about and I think you made some very important point here. I especially enjoyed your inclusion of Proverbs 14:1 here.

    God bless,
    Patty

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