Friday, March 28, 2008

Being a Life Giver, Part 4: Life Giving in the Home

“Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled.”--Titus 2:3-5

We live in a day where this passage is not very popular, on many levels. The idea that a woman would work at home, and even want to, is repulsive to much of our culture. Our churches are even affected by this mentality in the way that they encourage young women to “get a career and make something of themselves” before they get married. Work is a good thing. And if you are single, work is a necessity if you want to have food on the table! But this passage is applicable to us, even in our singleness. We, too, must be life-givers in our own homes even when there is no husband to greet us at the end of the day.

I know I have talked about this before, but I will say it again briefly. It’s really easy to think that biblical womanhood in the home starts when we actually have a husband in the home. In the same way that we expect men to behave like biblical men long before they say “I do,” we, also, should do the same. We do not know when, or if, God will choose to provide a husband for us. In the mean time we can work at growing into godly women even while we are single.

So, how do we do that?

First, we can start with roommates. A lot of us have roommates. If your roommate has had a hard day at school, or work, ask her if you can make her dinner, or offer to share your dinner with her. If she is sick, going to the store and picking up medicine for her might be the encouragement she needs right then. I had a bad stomach virus earlier this year. A good friend of mine not only came and picked me up at the airport (knowing she could get sick from me), but she also went to the store and loaded me up with Gatorade and chicken broth. The Lord used her to bless and encourage me even when I was sick. Sometimes being a life-giver at home is simply giving of yourself in little ways in order to bless someone else. Sometimes it is in the big ways like driving hours into the night with a friend so she can make it to the emergency room to be with her family during a tragedy. Being a life-giver in the home requires that we give up our lives for the sake of others. And we can start being a life-giver to our roommates by asking God to show us ways that we can be a blessing to them even today.

If you don’t have roommates, and even if you do, your home can be a source of life by bringing people into it. Another very easy thing to do is to get comfortable at home by ourselves. One of my professors encouraged us to talk to someone at church who we normally wouldn’t talk to and then make a point to know more about them. Maybe being a life-giver at home will mean you invite that person over for lunch because you know that your Savior dined with people who were not like him. Or maybe it means that the next time you have a party you include a person who normally wouldn’t hang out with you. One of the things that I so appreciated about my old roommates is that whenever we had people over (which was frequent) they always were so welcoming to new people. No one was an outsider because they loved Christ and the people that he died for. There are no cliques in heaven. We should start preparing for heaven now.

A lot of times we think that if we just learn how to cook, clean, and set a good dinner table we have the womanhood thing down. It most certainly is that—and so much more. Our God is a not a God of lists. Lists are what destroyed the Israelites because they would rather seek to keep the law than love the Lord with all of their heart (They also would rather worship idols then than the one true God, but that’s another blog post.). Women who are life-givers, like my friends, don’t do it because they like to keep lists. They do it because they love Christ. Life-giving in the home, like life-giving in the community is about dying to self and living for Christ, every day.

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