We live in a world that tells our women So what if you’re house is messy? Who’s business is it? If your husband doesn’t like it, he can pick it up himself…You’re working a tight schedule with your career, of course you don’t have the time to clean everything up…Just because you are a woman doesn’t mean you have to do the cleaning.
Do any of these sound familiar?
We also live in a world where stay-at-home mommies are in the spotlight (maybe a TV show, a popular web site, etc.) and can give the impression that if you just do it right, or follow these three easy steps you can have everything orderly all the time.
How is one supposed to marry these two worlds?
My answer is to throw them both out. Open your bibles, pray for wisdom and discernment and start really thinking about this.
15 She rises while it is yet night
and provides food for her household
and portions for her maidens.
16 She considers a field and buys it;
with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.
17 She dresses herself with strength
and makes her arms strong.
18 She perceives that her merchandise is profitable.
Her lamp does not go out at night. Proverbs 31:15-18
Is this Proverbs 31 woman of long ago? Is she no longer what God wishes us to be? I don’t think so. When we break this down, we see that God wishes for us to dress for the occasion at the first chance, praise Him as we work and diligently seek to serve our husband, children and others.
And, honestly, the woman of long ago did this in much worse circumstances. Ouch. She often had all the tasks we do nowadays, but while growing, preserving, and cooking all of her own food. She had no modern-day appliances. She had no artificial heat or air-conditioning. She had no inside pluming. She probably had many more children than we do, and often there was one bedroom. She had to make her own cleaners or go without. She had to obtain and haul any water she wanted to use.
So how has the Proverbs 31 woman changed over the years? In God’s view she hasn’t. His Word is still His Word. It hasn’t changed, and it never will (Hebrews 13:8). He wants us to get up ready to face the day without slacking, dress for the occasion, praise Him as we work and diligently seek to serve our husbands, children and others. That’s still the same.
If you are a stay-at-home mom, you know that it’s generally easier in the morning to get up first and get dressed before the chaos–or it just might not happen. If you are working in corporate world, He expects you to dress appropriately and serve your job. He wants for us to serve our families–whether that is bringing money into the family, or being with the children all day. Get up, dress (prepare) appropriately, and serve–whether at home or at work–serve.
He expects us to keep our home. For many of us, this means clean. If you have the money and you hire someone else, I don’t think He has a problem with that. Even if your husband willingly cleans (either occasionally or if he’s the stay-at-home), as long as a woman is managing her home by some means, I believe that is what He wants for us.
What He does not desire for us is to be lazy. He does not desire for us to set a bad example. He does not desire for us to wake up and put on 4 inch stilettos and then sit around all day while the house becomes unkempt, because you can’t go up and down the stairs in your heels. He does not want us to get a day job where we aren’t really serving.
He wants us to provide food for our house (v. 15) weather we work to buy it, grow it ourselves, or pay someone else.
He wants us to plan for the future (v. 16). What future is best for your house? Plan that one. Consider change when it comes.
He wants us to dress/plan appropriately (v. 17). Dress and do things with a purpose–not just for looks.
He wants us to understand what we have is of value (v. 18). Our value lies in the Lord. And He wants us to be spiritually wise and put Him in the middle of our plans (Matthew 25:2-5).
So does God expect women to do all the cleaning? Well…He desires for us to make sure it’s done.
Feel free to leave comments and examples of what you are doing to meet these needs–perhaps in a way that other women may not consider. And do so with kind words please.