Is He Ready to Lead? By, Voddie Baucham

When we talk about being godly women, we go to Proverbs 31 or Titus 2 for our instruction. But there isn’t a “Proverbs 31 man”. So where do we go to find what the Bible says about being a godly man? In Voddie Baucham’s sermon “The Four P’s: Is He Ready To Lead”, we find that the Bible has a lot to say about what being a godly man looks like in Titus 1:5-16.
~CM

Titus 1:5-16

For this reason I left you in Crete, that you should set in order the things that are lacking, and appoint elders in every city as I commanded you— if a man is blameless, the husband of one wife, having faithful children not accused of dissipation or insubordination. For a bishop[b] must be blameless, as a steward of God, not self-willed, not quick-tempered, not given to wine, not violent, not greedy for money, but hospitable, a lover of what is good, sober-minded, just, holy, self-controlled, holding fast the faithful word as he has been taught, that he may be able, by sound doctrine, both to exhort and convict those who contradict.

The Elders’ Task

10 For there are many insubordinate, both idle talkers and deceivers, especially those of the circumcision, 11 whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole households, teaching things which they ought not, for the sake of dishonest gain. 12 One of them, a prophet of their own, said, “Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons.” 13 This testimony is true. Therefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith, 14 not giving heed to Jewish fables and commandments of men who turn from the truth. 15 To the pure all things are pure, but to those who are defiled and unbelieving nothing is pure; but even their mind and conscience are defiled. 16 They profess to know God, but in works they deny Him, being abominable, disobedient, and disqualified for every good work.

The Bible says that one of the consequences of not following these guidelines is that a husband/father will not have his prayers be heard.

What are the Four Ps?

  1. Prophet- to instruct
  2. Priest- to pray for and with
  3. Provider- responsible to provide home, food..etc. for his family
  4. Protector- willing to die to protect his family (women and children first)
            The first qualification of an elder includes; modeling a godly family life. (Titus 1:6) Paul says that this man must be “the husband of one wife” meaning he must be a one-woman kind of man. He also says that “his children are believers and are not open to debauchery and insubordination”. In his sermon Dr. Baucham believes that, “his children are faithful” is the best translation for this particular section of this verse. No father can guarantee the conversion of his children, but he can ordinarily ensure that they act in a “faithful” way.  Therefore this qualification is not focusing on his children’s disobedience, but rather how he reacts to the child’s disobedience. Overall this man must have one wife and faithful children in order to qualify as a potential elder.
 
The next qualification is; modeling Christian character. (Titus 1:7-8) To be above reproach does not mean that he must be perfect, which is not obtainable in this life, but he must be, “blameless in his outward conduct.  He is to be upright and just in his dealings with others. The elder is to be the kind of man that no one suspects of wrongdoing and immorality, the kind of man that people would be surprised or shocked to hear charged with such acts. It’s certainly not that he is sinless, but that his demeanor and behavior over time has garnered well-deserved respect and admiration from others.”
“He must not be arrogant or quick-tempered or a drunkard or violent or greedy for gain…” (Titus 1:7) If a man is above reproach then, the aforementioned deeds would less likely be seen in his character. What you would notice about him is that he strives to be “… hospitable, a lover of good, self-controlled, upright, holy, and disciplined.” (Titus 1:8) The attributes for sons and potential spouses for daughters shouldn’t be far off from these.
 
The last qualification of an elder is; to hold to, teach, and defend sound doctrine. (Titus 1:9) ”A pastor or elder must have the ability to teach. This includes both teaching what is right and correcting error. The reason for this emphasis is clear from what follows in verses 10-16.” (Titus:9) As Dr. Baucham put it, many may think that this particular characteristic doesn’t apply to parents raising sons but it does. If a young man is holding firm to the word of God, defending it, teaching it, and all the while applying it to his life, the other qualifications (such as verses 7-8) will fall in place.  Dr. Baucham says in his sermon, that a Christian man’s job is to wash his wife in the water of the word (Eph. 5:26) and bring his children up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord (Eph. 6:4).

Ultimately these qualifications, characteristics/character traits  are important for every Christian man, not just elders. Paul wanted Titus to go to the home, find an ordinary family man who is walking out the Christian life as a husband and father and then appoint him as an elder in the church. By reading the Old Testament we can learn a thing or two from the Patriarchs and many other men who did their duty as a husband and a father.

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24 Ways to Prepare Your Young Man to Become a Gentleman

24 Ways to Prepare Your Young Man

Boys will be boys.

For sure. But he can learn to be a gentleman as well. A gentleman in the right sense – not in a sissy, unreasonable manner – but a kind, respectful and godly young man.

It’s not that we’d ask our son to sit with his hands folded or keep him from running, building or exploring. No way. But we do hope he’ll learn to be wise, to consider others, and to remember that he’s a son of the King.

A true gentleman.

24 WAYS

  1. Fear The Lord. It’s the beginning of knowledge. Prov. 1:7
  2. Listen carefully. A wise man listens intently and learns much. Prov. 1:5
  3. Pay attention to your father’s instruction. You’ll be glad you did. Prov. 1:8
  4. And don’t forget your mother’s teaching. She has wisdom to offer. Prov. 1:8b
  5. Control your temper.  “He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty. And he who rules his spirit than he who takes a city” (Prov. 16:32).
  6. Keep your word. A gentleman follows through on what he says he will do.
  7. Don’t hang out with the ungodly. Bad company corrupts good morals. I Cor. 15:33.
  8. Invest in strong, loyal friendships. The kind of friend who “sticks closer than a brother” (Prov. 18:24).
  9. Do what needs to be done. Without being told. Don’t wait to be asked when you know what you should do.
  10. Look sharp. Not sloppy or slovenly – simply neat and clean will do.
  11. Trust in The Lord. And don’t rely on your own understanding. Prov. 3:5
  12. Don’t chafe at correction. Consider it an opportunity to learn and grow.  Prov. 3:11.
  13. Be known as a hard worker. Learn to enjoy your job and take on whatever must be tackled. Prov. 6:6.
  14. Walk in purity. Avert your eyes and run from immorality. There is power in purity.
  15. Be polite. “Courtesy is as much a mark of a gentleman as courage.” – Theodore Roosevelt
  16. Work out. Keep in shape. A young man should be strong and fit for whatever he might be called upon to carry out.
  17. Watch over those who are younger or weaker than you. Never be too big for the small.
  18. Serve others.  To humbly serve is a very manly quality. Don’t let anyone ever tell you differently. Follow Christ’s example.  (Phil. 2).
  19. Look after the ladies. Step back to let her in the door first. Offer to carry heavy items for her. Protect and defend her.
  20. Make study a life-long habit. Commit to learning as much as you can about as many subjects as you can. Read books, research, observe and ask questions.
  21. Show respect for those who are older than you. Look them in the eye and shake their hand. Listen to what they have to say.
  22. Flee from sin. Get out of there immediately when you encounter temptation. (I Tim. 6:11).
  23. Be bold. As a lion. A righteous man doesn’t need be shy about what’s right. Prov. 28:1.
  24. Love God’s Word. Blessed is the man…whose delight is in the law of The Lord. Psalm 1.

So yes, boys will be boys. But prepare them to be gentlemen too.

In His grace,

http://club31women.com/2013/04/24-ways-to-prepare-your-young-man-to-become-a-gentleman/

24 Ways to Prepare Your Young Girl to Become a Lovely Woman

24 Ways to PrepareYou wouldn’t guess just by looking at her.

That she’s not so much a young girl, but a more of a woman every day. And that now it’s as though there’s only a small window of time to teach her the many lessons she should learn. This fleeting, but oh-so-wonderful chance to share wisdom to a girl who’s growing up right before you.

Because you and I both know it takes a lot to be a woman. And even more to be a lovely one. You understand – it’s not so much her appearance – but what goes on in her heart and in her mind. Things of truth and beauty. Of courage and kindness. Of strength and sweetness.

Loveliness.

So how do you prepare her for that?

 

24 WAYS

  1. Be gentle in words and actions. Let your beauty come from a gentle and quiet spirit (I Pet. 3:4).
  2. Determine to be strong. As a woman, you’ll face many situations where you’ll need to be steady and of a sound mind. Strength and honor are her clothing (Prov. 31:25).
  3. Live purely. There’s goodness and power in purity.
  4. Choose joy. You will bless everyone around you with your joyful countenance. Besides, it’s a lovely way to live.
  5. Seek wisdom. And as wisdom comes from above, look up (James 3).
  6. Laugh freely. It will lighten your spirit and everyone else around you too.
  7. Care for your health. Be sure and eat good foods, exercise, and get enough rest. If you care for yourself, then you’ll be better able to care for others too.
  8. Speak sweetly. People will be able – and more open – to listen to you if you do.
  9. Be willing to work hard. Learn to enjoy your tasks and take on what must be tackled (Prov. 31:13).
  10. Sing loudly. A song can both change a mood and give glory to God. So make a loud noise! (Ps. 98:4).
  11. Study many different things. Decide you’re going to be a life-long student. Learn about gardening, ancient history, bread-baking, new languages, natural medicine, geography, or anything else that fascinates you.
  12. Look after those in need. Have compassion on others and use your gifts to bless them.
  13. Bring beauty into your life. And into the life of others. Whether it be flowers, art, poetry, handwork, or bright colors.
  14. Walk through trials in faith.  Don’t walk in your own strength, but trust Him who will carry you through.
  15. Have a good cry. Now and then. It’ll make you feel better.
  16. Invest in a few good friends. Make time for and pursue relationships with those who can encourage you, inspire you and challenge you.
  17. Learn how to cook. It’s a handy and necessary skill. Because doesn’t everyone need to eat?
  18. Spend time alone in the Word. Don’t ever get too busy for time with your God.
  19. Be kind to others. Kindness isn’t all that hard to offer and yet has such a significant impact on those around you. And on her tongue is the law of kindness (Prov. 31:26b).
  20. Serve cheerfully. Look to Christ as your example, not what the world says about service. Nothing begrudging or stingy there (Phil. 2).
  21. Pray about all things. Don’t try to solve everything by yourself, but go to your Heavenly Father with your joys, cares and concerns (Eph. 6:18).
  22. Watch what you say. Your words have power to build up or tear down. So use them carefully.
  23. Love others deeply.  I Corinthians 13.
  24. Draw near to God.  And He will draw near to you. (James 4:8)

Yes, it takes a lot to be a woman. And even more to be a lovely one. But it’s so what I want for her.

It’s what I want for me too.

Lovely living. As a woman.

In His grace,

http://club31women.com/2013/04/24-ways-to-prepare-her-to-become-a-lovely-woman/

“Homemaking”- By, J.R. Miller

While listening to “The Wise Woman’s Guide to Blessing her Husband’s Vision” by, Douglas Phillips, he mentioned a quote from J.R. Miller entitled “Homemaking”. As I researched and read his passages, I was enthralled at the way he described a godly wife. Our culture has gotten so far away from these Biblical virtues, it saddens me that I do not even recognize some of them when I read them. I think how wonderful it would be if we all were to strive to be more like those that came before us that knew the power of following the Biblical model of womanhood and manhood. Lord willing, may I be worthy to be described as the godly wife in the passage below.
~CM

J.R. Miller-“Homemaking”

One of the first essential elements in a wife is faithfulness, faithfulness, too, in the largest sense. “The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her.” Perfect confidence is the basis of all true affection. A shadow of doubt destroys the peace of married life. A true wife by her character and by her conduct proves herself worthy of her husband’s trust. He has confidence in her affection; he knows that her heart is unalterably true to him. He has confidence in her management; he confides to her the care of his household. He knows that she is true to all his interests – that she is prudent and wise, neither wasteful nor extravagant. It is one of the essential things in a true wife that her husband shall be able to leave in her hands the management of all domestic affairs, and know that they are safe.

Wifely thriftlessness and extravagance have destroyed the happiness of many a household and wrecked many a home. On the other hand, many a man owes his prosperity to his wife’s prudence and her wise administration of household affairs. Every true wife makes her husband’s interests her own. While he lives for her, carrying her image in his heart and toiling for her all the days, she thinks only of what will do him good. When burdens press upon him she tries to lighten them by sympathy, by cheer, by the inspiration of love. She enters with zest and enthusiasm into all his plans. She is never a weight to drag him down; she is strength in his heart to help him ever to do nobler and better things.

A true wife makes a man’s life nobler, stronger, grander, by the omnipotence of her love “turning all the forces of manhood upward and heavenward.” While she clings to him in holy confidence and loving dependence she brings out in him whatever is noblest and richest in his being. She inspires him with courage and earnestness. She beautifies his life. She softens whatever is rude and harsh in his habits or his spirit. She clothes him with the gentler graces of refined and cultured manhood. While she yields to him and never disregards his lightest wish, she is really his queen, ruling his whole life and leading him onward and upward in every proper path. But it should be understood that for every wife the first duty is the making and keeping of her own home. Her first and best work should be done there, and till it is well done she has no right to go outside to take up other duties. She is to be a “worker at home.” She must look upon her home as the one spot on earth for which she alone is responsible, and which she must cultivate well for God if she never does anything outside. For her the Father’s business is not attending Dorcas societies, and missionary meetings, and mother’s meetings, and temperance conventions, or even teaching a Sunday school class, until she has made her own home all that her wisest thought and best skill can make it.

There have been wives who in their zeal for Christ’ work outside have neglected Christ’s work inside their own doors. They have had eyes and hearts for human need and human sorrow in the broad fields lying far out, but neither eye nor heart for the work of live close about their own feet. The result has been that while they were doing angelic work in the lanes and streets, the angels were mourning over their neglected duties within the hallowed walls of their own homes. While they were winning a place in the hearts of the poor or the sick or the orphan, they were losing their rightful place in the hearts of their own household. Let it be remembered that Christ’s work in the home is the first that he gives to every wife, and that no amount of consecrated activities in other spheres will atone in this world or the next for neglect or failure there. It is in her own home that this warmth of heart and this openness of hand are first to be shown. It is as wife and mother that her gentleness performs its most sacred ministry. Her hand wipes away the tear drops when there is sorrow. In sickness she is the tender nurse. She bears upon her own heart every burden that weighs upon her husband. No matter how the world goes with him during the day, when he enters his own door he meets the fragrant atmosphere of love. Other friends may forsake him, but she clings to him with unalterable fidelity. When gloom comes down and adversity falls upon him, her faithful eyes look ever into his like two stars of hope shining in the darkness. When his heart is crushed, beneath her smile it gathers itself again into strength, “like a wind torn flower in the sunshine.”

“You cannot imagine,” wrote De Tocqueville of his wife, “what she is in great trials. So it is in the dark hours of a man’s life, when burdens press, when sorrow weigh like mountains upon his soul, when adversities have left him crushed and broken, or when he is in the midst of fierce struggles which try the strength of every fibre of his manhood, that all the radiance and glory of a true wife’s strengthful love shine out before his eyes. Only then does he recognize in her God’s angel of mercy. In sickness, how thoughtful, how skillful, how gentle a nurse is the true wife! In struggles with temptation or adversity or difficulty, what an inspirer she is! In misfortune or disaster, what lofty heroism does she exhibit and what courage does her bravery kindle in her husband’s heart! Instead of being crushed by the unexpected loss, she only then rises to her full grandeur of soul. Instead of weeping, repining and despairing, and thus adding tenfold to the burden of the misfortune, she cheerfully accepts the changed circumstances and becomes a minister of hope and strength. She turns away from luxury and ease to the plainer home, the simpler life, the humbler surroundings, without a murmur. It is in such circumstances and experiences that the heroism of woman’s soul is manifested. Many a man is carried victoriously through misfortune and enabled to rise again, because of the strong inspiring sympathy and the self forgetting help of his wife; and many a man fails in fierce struggle, and rises not again from the defeat of misfortune, because the wife at his side proves unequal to her opportunity.

These are words that every wife should ponder. Every home should be a Bethesda, “a house of mercy,” where the suffering, the weary, the sorrowing, the tempted, the tried, the fallen, may ever turn sure of sympathy, of help and of love’s holiest fruits. A true wife gives her husband her fullest confidence. She hides nothing from him. She gives no pledge of secrecy which will seal her lips in his presence. She listens to no words of admiration from others which she may not repeat to him. She expresses to him every feeling, every hope, every desire and yearning, every joy or pain. Then while she utters every confidence in his ear she is most careful to speak in no other ear any word concerning the sacred inner life of her home. Are there little frictions or grievances in the wedded life? Has her husband fault which annoys her or causes her pain? Does he fail in this duty or that? Do differences arise which threaten the peace of the home? In the feeling of disappointment and pain, smarting under a sense of injury, a wife may be strongly tempted to seek sympathy by telling her trials to some intimate friends. Nothing could be more fatal to her own truest interest and to the hope of restored happiness and peace in her home. Grievances complained of outside remain unhealed sores. The wise wife will share her secret of unhappiness with none but her Master, while she strives in every way that patient love can suggest to remove the causes of discord or trouble.

 

When Titus 2 Women May Be Hard to Find

http://www.poffclan.blogspot.mx/2013/04/when-titus-2-women-may-be-hard-to-find.html

 I watched my Emma carry Elijah outside today. She was “wearing” him, running sometimes, grinning big, simply delighting in him. She could teach me and other Moms a few things about being in the moment.

 

My thoughts flashed forward as I imagined her with her own children one day. The tears came as I thought of the loveliness of it all. And the tears came because I know she’ll meet resistance. I might not always be there to whisper, “Well done, my daughter. Make a home for your family. Love your husband. Delight in these children. Welcome His gifts and train them up for His glory.”

The tears came because I think when she’s older a Titus 2 woman might be hard to find. She’ll look around her, even in church, perhaps especially in church, and she’ll see women who have pursued their own glory, who will tell her that for all these years, Scripture has been misunderstood, that women being home-centered, marrying and bearing children, was only a “cultural” thing that we’re no longer called to because of our “freedom” in Christ Jesus.

She’ll look around and find mothers who never found it God-honoring enough to wipe noses and prepare meals and disciple little hearts or wear out the carpet with their knees bowed before the Lord. She’ll find the women who little valued having their children rise up and call them blessed, who instead longed to have the praise of the world, the validation and cheering on of other women, who couldn’t wait to do something else to give their lives more “meaning.”

She’ll find women whose divided hearts have come full-circle as they embrace and dish out feminism, the Christian re-mix version, of course, sanitized, not so overtly offensive, but still reeking of self and echoing that famous question, “Did God really say?”


What happens when mothers who have already raised their children think homemaking and babies and newlyweds have nothing to do with them? When they pursue so many interests that they’re never available, or they wrap themselves up so much in the study of their Bibles that their practical theology is anything but practical to the wife and mother who wants to know how to function on four hours of sleep or make a meal for 8 or heal a diaper rash or soothe a colicky baby?

There’s a void. An emptiness. And all women suffer because of it.

I’m in the middle–old enough to be a Titus 2 woman to some, and yet, still needing the encouragement of older Titus 2 women. Instead of finding Titus 2 exhortations, I’m watching older women distance themselves so much from home-centered living that they recoil at the thought of teaching the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be discreet and chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the Word of God be not blasphemed.

I’m watching women dismiss our home-centered calling as they insist on blurring the distinctive roles God has given men and women, sometimes in the name of being “Gospel-focused,” as though biblical womanhood is void of the Gospel dwelling in us richly.

As we age, our eyesight dims. But perhaps we need to be more concerned about losing sight of our Titus 2 responsibilities and being blinded by post-modern lies that leave us disqualified to teach the younger women.

Yes. A good Titus 2 woman might be hard to find, so what are we to do?

1) We can study what the Word says about biblical womanhood, with our daughters. Expose them to and discuss the distortions of womanhood (including the ones that declare a girl shouldn’t be educated, etc.), that they would not be taken captive by man’s wisdom or lean on their own understanding.

2) We can pray for God’s abundant provision of Titus 2 women in our daughters’ lives, women who have a love for home and who desire to share their love of sound doctrine, favorite parenting tips, and recipes or crafting skills.

3) We can give them mobile teachers, books written by sound Titus 2 authors who will encourage them when the pressure and negativity from without weighs heavy on them.

4) We can confidently teach them to be home-centered, not wavering or doubting or changing position with every new book or blog post we read. We can ground them in the Word of God and teach them well while they are with us how to manage a home, feast regularly on the Word, use their gifts to the glory of God for their families and church and community, learn new skills, love and serve others.

5) We can remind them that biblical womanhood goes against the grain, that many women, Christian women, chafe and writhe under it. They will meet resistance, and they will often feel very alone.

6) We must model contentment and joy in our own callings as wives and mothers, examining our hearts for remnants of feminist-shaped ideology that have contaminated our theology and influenced the vision of womanhood we’re passing to our daughters.

7) We must remember this duty to be Titus 2 women, and be available to the younger women around us, offering them encouragement and wisdom from our years as a wife and mother. We can guard against the belief that it’s holier to spend hours a day in the Word than it is to teach a younger woman how to plan meals for her family or refrain from being a busybody. (We would never think it wise of a man to neglect his work to study the Word so that he leaves his family without an income, and yet we often pressure women to do deep theological studies while their children remain unfed, the clothes aren’t done, and thoughtful food prep isn’t taking place. I’m not speaking of basic feasting and meditating on the Word, which is what most younger Moms only have time for.)

“It is doubtful that the Apostle Paul had in mind Bible classes or seminars or books when he spoke of teaching younger women. He meant the simple things, the everyday example, the willingness to take time from one’s own concerns to pray with the anxious mother, to walk with the way of the cross–with its tremendous demands of patience, selflessness, lovingkindness–and to show her, in the ordinariness of Monday through Saturday, how to keep a quiet heart.

These lessons will come perhaps most convincingly through rocking a baby, doing some mending, cooking a supper, or cleaning a refrigerator. Through such an example, one young woman–single or married, Christian or not–may glimpse the mystery of charity and the glory of womanhood, so perfectly exemplified in the response of a humble village girl of long ago when she said: ‘Behold the maidservant of the Lord! Let it be to me according to your word’ (Luke 1:38).”
~Elisabeth Elliot

With love,
Trisha

Domestic Warfare

A soldier, she is a wife. A mother. A homemaker.

In her home she’s on the front lines of the battle. She may be criticized and marginalized in some churches, social circles and certainly by the media. But her resolve is firm, her vision is clear and she’s set her sights on fulfilling her mission:  to be faithful in the task of glorifying God in the design He set forth for womanhood.

With an undistracted, focused goal she clearly recognizes the tactics of the enemy to blur the lines of gender, or to make her think that her occupation at home isn’t one of importance. She knows that the next generation of Kingdom builders is shaped by her words and example. She debunks the myth that some areas of life “are neutral.”

She seeks to fill the minds of her children with scripture and lead by her example that life is no playground, it’s a battleground.

No, her position isn’t in America’s military.  She engages in spiritual battles, wrestling “against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.” Eph. 6:12

Many times the battle is too hard for her. Her hands grow weary to the task and her aim isn’t steady. But God. He is faithful when she isn’t. Her General is aiding her in combat, by His Spirit. She falls and He picks her up and bandages her bruised knees and scraped elbows. The righteous fall seven times and yet rise again…Prov. 24:16

She determines to hold firmly to the faith, putting her confidence in Christ. When temptations arise, she goes to Him, telling Him all of her struggles. There she finds grace in her time of need, not allowing any spark of sin to smolder. Sin will not gain a toehold in her heart.

Her enemy is stronger than she, but as a good warrior does, she perseveres in the struggle.

By God’s grace alone she will submit to the authority of her imperfect husband.

By God’s grace alone, she will seek to make a beautiful home.

By God’s grace alone she will speak with the law of kindness on her tongue when she would rather answer with a critical spirit in her heart.

By God’s grace alone she will settle the sibling squabbles in a Biblical fashion when she wants to pull her hair out instead.

By God’s grace alone she will train the little kingdom in her home, to serve the highest One, seeking the Kingdom of God first and all His righteousness.

 A simultaneous Saint and sinner, Bambi was saved by grace through faith. She’s a helpmeet to her high school sweetheart and together they are sharpening eight arrows for the glory of God. Bambi spends her days homeschooling, cleaning up messes (external and internal), changing diapers, kissing boo-boos, reading books, and a million other duties she wouldn’t trade for the world. Bambi loves being a keeper at home and shares about her journey of grace in marriage, motherhood and family discipleship on her blog In the Nursery of the Nation. She is passionate about encouraging younger women to depend on Christ alone for their salvation, sanctification and to depend on His Word for the strength and wisdom required for marriage and motherhood.

A Message to the Husbands of Christian Homemakers:

By: Dr. James Dobson

It is high time you realized that your wives are under attack today! Everything they have been taught from earliest childhood is being subjected to ridicule and scorn. Hardly a day passes when the traditional values of the Judeo-Christian heritage are not blatantly mocked and undermined.

–The notion that motherhood is a worthwhile investment of a woman’s time suffers unrelenting bombardment.

–And the idea that wives should yield to the leadership of their husbands, as commanded in Ephesians 5:21–33 is considered almost medieval in its stupidity.

–And the concept that a man and woman should become one flesh, finding their identity in each other rather than as separate and competing individuals, is said to be intolerably insulting to women.

–And the belief that divorce is an unacceptable alternative has been abandoned by practically everybody. (Have you heard about Sue and Bob?)

–And the description of the ideal wife and mother, as offered in Proverbs 31:10–31 is now unthinkable for the modern woman. (She’s come along way, baby.)

–And the role of the female as help-meet, bread-baker, wound-patcher, love giver, home builder, and child-bearer is nothing short of disgusting.

All of these deeply ingrained values, which many of your wives are trying desperately to sustain, are continually exposed to the wrath of hell itself. The Western media—radio, television and the press—are working relentlessly to shred the last vestiges of Christian tradition. And your wives who believe in the spiritual heritage are virtually hanging by their thumbs! They are made to feel stupid and old-fashioned and unfulfilled, and in many cases, their self-esteem is suffering irreparable damage. They are fighting a sweeping social movement with very little support from anyone.

Let me say it more directly. For the man who appreciates the willingness of his wife to stand against the tide of public opinion–staying at home in her empty neighborhood in the exclusive company of jelly-faced toddlers and strong willed adolescents–it is about time you gave her some help. I’m not merely suggesting that you wash the dishes or sweep the floor. I’m referring to the provision of emotional support…of conversation…of making her feel like a lady…of building her ego…of giving her one day of recreation each week…of taking her out to dinner…of telling her that you love her. Without these armaments, she is left defenseless against the foes of the family–the foes of your family!

But to be honest, many of you husbands and fathers have been thinking about something else. Your wives have been busy attending seminars and reading family literature and studying the Bible, but they can’t even get you to enter a discussion about what they’ve learned. You’ve been intoxicated with your work and the ego support it provides.

What better illustration can I give than the letter quoted on page 94. It came from a desperate woman whose husband is rarely at home, and even when he’s there he has nothing to say. He prefers the company of Paul Harvey, who asks no questions and expects no answers. Furthermore, he’s a first-class punkin eater.” You know the story.

Peter, Peter, Punkin Eater
Had a wife and couldn’t keep her
Put her in a punkin shell
And there he kept her very well….

Yeah, Old Pete has got his little woman right where he wants her. She’s cooped up in a house with two children under three years of age, changing diapers and wiping noses and cooking meals for him and Mr. Harvey. That’s some existence for living, breathing, female with deep needs to be loved and respected. Not only does Peter not intend to meet those needs, but he forbids her to take them elsewhere. He doesn’t even want her to go to a Bible study class because, would you believe, he fears his kids will catch a disease. Never mind the disease that is choking the life out of his wife—the disease called loneliness. To the wives of all the world’s punkin eaters, I say, “Go to the Bible study class anyway!” Submission to masculine leadership does not extend, in my opinion, to behaviors that will be unhealthy for the husband, the wife, and the marriage. Nor should a woman tolerate child abuse, child molestation, or wife beating.

The message could not be more simple or direct to a Christian man: the Lord has commanded you to “love your wives, even as Christ loved the church, giving His life for it.” She needs you now. Will you fit her into your plans?