Thursday, February 28, 2013

If I could turn back time...

"Joyfully serving your family?  Submitting to your husband?  Letting him be the head of your household?"

The world looks at these statements and balk.  That's so 1950's.  That's being a doormat and having no voice.  This is setting women's rights back by decades.  But isn't this what the Bible says?  This is what God intended for marriage and family.

Darlene had a good point about the subject of submission.  "Letting him have the final say doesn't mean that you can't have a discussion and share your ideas.  A good marriage should have channels of communication by which husbands and wives both offer ideas and determine solutions.  These should be mutual respect where both parties give and take of each other's thoughts.  And there needs to be an attitude of acceptance where both a man and his wife can offer their voice."

So biblical submission does not mean we don't have a voice.  We can discuss and offer solutions.  But in the end, our husbands need to make the final decisions.  And if they are looking to God for direction, then those decisions will line up with scripture.

This statement had profound meaning for me.  "The reason we submit to our husbands is because we are commanded in scripture to do so.  God's wisdom doesn't always sit right with mankind, and it doesn't have to.  Faith tells me that His wisdom exceeds mine and therefore I put my trust in His infallible Word."

In the end, we all have a choice.  God gave us that one right - the ability to choose our outcomes.  But what will we choose?  The world or God?

Joshua 24:15 NIV
But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve...But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013


This next section in Chapter Two has really stumped me.  What do I write?  How does it apply to me?  If you would have asked me 9-10 years ago, I would have told you there is no way I could be a stay at home mom.  I really enjoyed working and I do really like the work I do.  I surely didn't have anything against stay at home moms.  I just thought it wasn't my thing.

But then, once my son was born, I was torn.  I really wanted to be there to see all his firsts.  But cleaning all day would have been torture for me.  A few years ago, I read a book called "The New Eve."  And boy did it open my eyes.  I started seeing things differently.  Then I read The Good Wife's Guide for the first time a few months ago.  God is working on my heart big time!  But here's the thing.  Our family is in no way financially able for me to quit work.  I make more than my husband and yet, we are still struggling to keep up.  Could we have done things differently early on?  Oh, how I wish we had!!

So right now, and for a few years now, God has placed this desire in my heart to be a stay at home mom.  Yet, I don't see a way to do that just yet.  And did I mention, I really do love my job.  Yet this mother is torn between wanting to spend time with my kids and really loving to plug numbers all day (I'm a bookkeeper).

I looked up a few quotes from the book mentioned in Darlene's book, The Feminine Mystique.  And it was sad.  According to this book, women felt like housework and being housewives were drudgery and meaningless.  They questioned their existence, turning to alcoholism, divorce and worse.  But what if they had a more mature Christian woman encouraging them and pointing them to God and submitting to Him out of reverence?  Could it have changed their path?  I think so.

So this took my search to Titus 2 and back to our verse in Colossians a few days ago.

Titus 2:4-5 (in reference to older women instructing younger women)
Then they can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.

Colossians 3:23-24

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.

So I am encouraged.  For now, I will take my current status and do the best I can.  I strive to stick to my values and morals at work so my love for Jesus shines through.  I have become bolder in my faith at work.  I am now able to share my faith and have meaningful discussions with co-workers who ask me questions.  God may be preparing me for other things in the future, but for now, I want Him to use me in this moment, at this time, where I am.  And hopefully I will continue to grow into the child Of God He desires me to be for future plans He has in store.

I will end with Darlene's last sentence in this section of the chapter.  "If you're seeking true joy with long-lasting results, it can only be found by building virtue upon faith.  That's where you'll find fulfillment, and that's where you'll find your true purpose in life."  Yes, that's my goal.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Chapter Two - Love is Not Selfish

1 Timothy 5:8 HCSB
But if anyone does not provide for his own, that is his own household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.

This verse was referring to widows, but Darlene uses it to show us that God expects unselfish love.
In today's world there is an attitude of acceptance.  As long as it doesn't affect me, everything is okay.  Our human nature is a selfish beast.  And the world's message of making me #1 just feeds right into our selfish desires.  But God wants so much more for us.  To find true joy, we must give up self and serve others.

In the book, it says "when our primary concern is our 'self' to the point that we become our first priority, we have given in to a selfish nature that isn't lined up with scripture."  Look at the scripture below.

1 Corinthians 10:23-24 NIV
"I have the right to do anything," you say—but not everything is beneficial. "I have the right to do anything"—but not everything is constructive. No one should seek their own good, but the good of others.

When I was searching for quotes on selfishness, it was disheartening to see so many quotes defending and promoting selfishness.  Finally I came across this one from J.R. Miller, a Christian author from the 1800s.  I think it goes quite well with this book.

“Love is always ready to deny itself, to give, sacrifice, just in the measure of its sincerity and intensity. Perfect love is perfect self-forgetfulness. Hence where there is love in a home, unselfishness is the law. Each forgets self and lives for others.  But where there is selfishness it mars joy. One selfish soul will destroy the sweetness of life in any home. It is like an ugly bush in the midst of a garden of flowers. It was selfishness that destroyed the first home and blighted all the loveliness of Paradise; and it has been blighting lovely things in earth's home ever since. We need to guard against this spirit.” ― J.R. Miller

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Colossians 3:23-24

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.

Whether you are a stay at home mom, a working mom, an empty-nester, a young wife with no children; our number one goal should be our family.  Darlene describes it as our "primary passion."

When you are passionate about something, you give it your all, you make sacrifices for that passion.  If your family is your passion, imagine the possibilities.

Whatever situation you are in, if you work at it with all of your heart knowing it's Jesus Christ you are serving, you and your family will reap the rewards.

If you work outside the home, be sure to get your priorities straight.  A bigger house, a new car or other nice things should not take the place of your passion and priority for your family.  If you stay at home, make your family top priority, not soap operas, the internet or other distractions.

Women should "take pride in quietly serving God and their family."

Saturday, February 23, 2013

First Priorities

How would you order your priorities?  Who comes first in your life?  Our first focus should be on God and our personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

Next up is our spouse.  Like Tammy said yesterday, if you are truly committed to your husband and committed to loving them, then submitting to them becomes much easier.

In the book, Darlene writes that our first priorities are to be “faith and family from a place of sacrificial love.”  What comes to mind when you think of sacrificial love?  The Greek word for this kind of love is agape.

Agape love is the kind of love Jesus has for us.  He made the ultimate sacrifice – dying on a cross and giving up everything – to save us.  It’s unconditional love.  He loves us even when we are a mess, broken and unlovable to the rest of the world.

Ephesians 5:1 calls us to love like this: “Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children and walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.”

I think 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 captures an image of this kind of love:  “Love is patient, love is kind.  It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.  It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.  Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.”

Let’s turn this scripture into a prayer today that we may embody this kind of love for our husbands and children too.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Day One - Week One

Here we go!! First, I want to ask for your prayers. This study is way out of my comfort zone in so many ways! I know God is going to do some awesome things through the next few weeks! Being a submissive wife had not even been a blip on my radar until just a couple of years ago. God has been working on me and my heart and it has been hard, but well worth it.

I want to start by first focusing on one of the main scripture passages in this book mentioned in Chapter 1. It's the verses everyone thinks of when we hear the word submit. Please read this passage today and study it using the SOAP method. Really think about it today. Meditate on it throughout the day. Here is the verse and also the definition of the word "submit."

Ephesians 5:22-24 NIV
Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.

submit [ suhb-mit ]
verb (used with object) 1. to give over or yield to the power or authority of another (often used reflexively). 2. to subject to some kind of treatment or influence. 3. to present for the approval, consideration, or decision of another or others: to submit a plan; to submit an application. (from

Please share any of your thoughts or observations with us today.

Lord, I pray you will work in us and through us as we begin this new study. Speak to our hearts and give us wisdom and guidance. I pray we will take what we learn and apply it to our daily lives. And we will give you all of the glory, honor and praise. In Jesus' name, amen.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Study of The Good Wife's Guide

This week we begin our study using The Good Wife's Guide by Darlene Schacht.  I hope this study will be a blessing to us all!  On Friday, we will start with Chapter 1.  Please read this chapter over the next few days, and if you have extra time, I encourage you to read the Foreword and Introduction as well.

At the beginning of the first chapter, we see a quote from Darlene: "Purpose is found in those quiet
moments when no one but God sees the work of your hands."  Think about this for a minute - do you know your purpose?  Do you know God's will for your life?

If we are obediently living for God and carrying out His commands and instructions, the will of God will be clear.  As a wife and/or mother, your walk with God and your family are your top priorities.  We will look at this closer on Friday.  Looking forward to growing together!