“The question that we have to ask ourselves is:
Who is my child’s teacher? And if it’s not me… why not?”
– Dr. Voddie Baucham
Is it ever too late?
For Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive by the Spirit, through whom also he went and preached to the spirits in prison who disobeyed long ago when God waited patiently in the days of Noah while the ark was being built. In it only a few people, eight in all, were saved through water, and this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you also—not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a good conscience toward God. It saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ, who has gone into heaven and is at God’s right hand—with angels, authorities and powers in submission to him.
1 Peter 3:18-22
This passage prompted me to search for what I read at my baptism. Instead, I came across the encouraging scriptures that were read to me that day in November of 2002. I didn’t much understand them at the time, but reading them now, I see they were to be the scriptures I’d stand on for many years to follow. The links I’ve included are of different blogs that confirm what God had been preparing me for the moment He washed me from all my sins.
I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings… Philippians 3:10
I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:12-14
Therefore, stand firm! Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain. 1 Corinthians 15:58
Before becoming a Christian, all surrounding me often would praise my confidence, compassion, my intelligence, and ‘maturity’; but once I stood on a foundation of faith, many began looking at me in a different light. Where once they saw me as confident, they now believed I was arrogant (Arrogance vs. Confidence – Philippians 3:13-16); where once they saw compassion, they now believed I was intolerant; intelligent to naive; and mature to immature.
I embraced the loss, with Christ’s help, and now I see that I, in fact have been given everything in Christ Jesus (Who Am I – Philippians 3:7-10). All that He is, is worth all that is lost (Worthwhile Pursuits – Philippians 3:13-16). He is enough.
As a New Creation (Philippians 3:12-21), having been baptized and buried with Christ (Romans 6:1-14), I have been made new; taking on the godly characteristics of living. My confidence was in myself and dependence was on the love and acceptance of my friends and family. It changed into a confidence in Christ alone, leaving me reliant on the Holy Spirit and fellow believers. My compassion, once an empathy for the weak and wanting had changed to a deep desire to help all with a heart longing for their salvation and transformation. My intelligence limited by my personal experiences became knowledge, wisdom, and understanding of the truth, of sin, and of good. My maturity changed as that I no longer received advice from the ungodly; the aged, the educated, and the experienced had only a worldly wisdom that couldn’t bring me to the intimate place with Christ that I desired. It was the truth of God’s Word that transformed my heart and gave me newness of mind.
Now being a wife and mama, my calling was made much more clear to me after searching for where I’d fit in. I looked everywhere but at home but finally realized my purpose was here waiting for me all along. It was all tied together when a friend recommended the book Passionate Housewives Desperate for God by Jennie Chancey and Stacey McDonald and I, excited and encouraged, took on my blessed calling (Being a Keeper at Home – Philippians 2-8).
It was and still is hard! But God is steadfast with His helpful and guiding hand. He showed me that my Labor in the Lord is Not in Vain (1 Corinthians 15:58 ) and that any frustrations along the way are helping me grow into the woman I’ve been created to be. So I’m reminded again to stand firm and not to give in to my fleshy desires to give up the fight. Baptism is more than mere symbolism, it’s the very expression of what Christ did for us – buried for our sins and risen for eternal life – washed and made new!
If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose.
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.
Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death— even death on a cross!
Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Being a child of God, caring for our husbands, raising our children and keeping our homes. Is it really possible to be productive, achieve goals, and change habits in the midst of so many responsibilities?
Yes! If we’re doing all the other stuff because of those responsibilities.
God, and this call He’s placed on my life as wife, mother, and keeper of my home, are my reason for being.
It is my lifelong goal to be all that God has purposed me for, and there are always new areas for growth and improvement. I know there are some readers who are just starting out in their careers in such a calling as being a child of God, a wife, mother, and keeper of the home, or even a ways from it and I hope you’ll benefit from this post and avoid the detours and wrong turns I have taken along the way!
First it is important to realize that fulfilling your role as wife, mother, and keeper of the home, is not separate from being a child of God, nor separate from each other. They all tie into each other and if one is being ignored all the others suffer in one way or another.
Being a blessing to God can be as simple as bringing your husband a cold drink, kissing that boo-boo, or picking up that single toy off the floor. It can also be as elaborate as serving your husband supper when you’d rather be sitting down, reading to the kids a few words at a time while training them to sit and listen, or getting that last load washed and dried so you can sit and rest. The little sacrifices are as great to God as the greatest sacrifice and all are treasures to those they touch.
How can you be great in this calling? Here’s my list (not in any particular order):
1. Put their interests first, always. Do you enjoy doing something that is unhealthy for your body, mind, or spirit? If so, it’s not good for them. You are expressing your respect toward your husband (or lack thereof) and setting an example for your children with everything you do. It is important to take care of yourself (otherwise you can’t take care of them), and important to think of the longterm effects of your actions.
2. Guard the home. As a keeper of the home, one of your main roles is to guard your family from physical and spiritual harm. There are many ways you need to do this: Physical – keeping home clean and healthy, teaching the children good safety habits, using your seatbelt, make sure they use a car seat if below a certain age & weight, etc; and Spiritual – guarding who they spend time with (and who you spend time with), practice a worshipful and reverent attitude, avoid sin, etc.
3. Spend time with them. When our husbands come home, it can be tempting to go and hide to get rest; often we’re tired and just want to relax, but this is the only time we have with them during the weekdays, often, and you shouldn’t waste it. Take this time to find out about their day, lay on the couch with them. On weekends, devote as much time as possible to them. Take advantage of the time you have with him. The kids need their parents to spend time together and to spend time with them.
4. Play. Don’t just watch TV. Show them how to have fun. See 100 Ways to Have Fun with Your Kids for Free or Cheap.
5. Change your mind. Things that are traditionally considered duties that are menial or mundane are not insignificant — cooking meals, doing dishes, dusting, changing diapers, feeding, bathing, rocking babies to sleep in the middle of the night, etc are a part of humbleness and servant hood. We should no longer look at it as a low position when we serve our families.
6. Read the Bible together. This is one of the most important things you can do. Establishing a habit of being in the Word is crucial to our personal relationships to Christ and reading together is crucial to the unity of the family.
7. Stand by your husband. Don’t contradict him in front of others, don’t fight with him in front of them, and most definitely don’t ever disrespect him with words or looks of unkindness – ever. How you treat your husband affects your children, your home, and the oneness of your marriage. As one, you are teaching your children reverence and respect, love, sacrifice, and loyalty. Always work with your husband and never undermine or usurp his authority.
8. Teach them selflessness. Show them (don’t just tell them) how to be selfless by living selflessly.
9. Teach them about finances. From an early age, you should teach them the value of money and how to manage money properly, the importance of the tithe and giving to those in need, how to save money to reach a goal and making wise investments, and later how to earn money. Being a good steward with money helps us to be good stewards with other responsibilities we bear.
10. Pray for them. Let go of the things that you can’t and shouldn’t control. Let God lead you in each decision made, action taken, and word spoken. Do not walk in your ignorance but walk in the wisdom of the Lord!
A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies. Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value. She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life….
She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue. She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: “Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.” Proverbs 31:10-12; 26-29
“There are many worthwhile pursuits in this world, but few of them rise to the level of training our children to follow the Lord and keep His commandments. I desperately want my sons and daughters to walk with God, and I am willing to do whatever it takes, whatever the Bible says I must do in order to be used by God as a means to that end. My prayer for you is that God would awaken in you that same passion.” ~Voddie Baucham from his book “Family Driven Faith” p.29
Challenging individuals, Voddie Baucham speaks out against the “anti-children” culture around us. He talks about the idea that taking a family is “less honorable as high income careers or highly visible ministry position”. He goes on to say that this idea is “biblically uninformed at best and grossly heretical at worst.”
So when they met together, they asked him, “Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?”
He said to them: “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” Acts 1:6-8
Satan is having a field day in the homes of our families in the world today. He is killing, stealing, and destroying the one thing we (and God) love more than any other thing on this planet: the family – and he’s doing it through corruption of the original order of what God intended for the family. Why is this his greatest target? Because it is one of the greatest places to experience who God is and what He is about; to see the representation of God’s very nature, character, and essence.
We see deceit against the value God has placed on the family in both the non-believing and believing cultures when we look at the rise of divorce and fornication, rebellion sprouting earlier and earlier in our children, and the selfish ambitions of individuals as a result of new age “follow your dreams” instead of “follow God”. This is clearly spoken of in the Bible in the 2 book of Timothy. Godlessness will surround us in the last days and it continues to flourish all around.
But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them.
They are the kind who worm their way into homes and gain control over weak-willed women, who are loaded down with sins and are swayed by all kinds of evil desires, always learning but never able to acknowledge the truth. Just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so also these men oppose the truth—men of depraved minds, who, as far as the faith is concerned, are rejected. But they will not get very far because, as in the case of those men, their folly will be clear to everyone. 2 Timothy 3:1-9
When will we take a stand against the enemy’s evil ploys to hurt our Creator? When will we intercede on behalf of the God who loved us, lived and died for us, rose to save us, had mercy on us, and interceded for us? It starts with the values we have and the priorities we place. Our relationships with our family in the created order is where we start!
Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.
But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people. Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving. For of this you can be sure: No immoral, impure or greedy person—such a man is an idolater—has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient. 7Therefore do not be partners with them.
For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) and find out what pleases the Lord. Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them. For it is shameful even to mention what the disobedient do in secret. But everything exposed by the light becomes visible, for it is light that makes everything visible. This is why it is said:
“Wake up, O sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.”
Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit. Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.
Wives and Husbands
Wives, submit to your husbands as 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.
Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. After all, no one ever hated his own body, but he feeds and cares for it, just as Christ does the church— for we are members of his body. “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.” This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband. Ephesians 5
Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
All of us who are mature should take such a view of things. And if on some point you think differently, that too God will make clear to you. Only let us live up to what we have already attained. Philippians 3:13-16
Are you willing to do whatever it takes for your children? Take it a step further, are you willing do do whatever God calls you to do? Are you going to allow God to transform your life by the renewing of your mind and rebuke Satan’s deceivers from your home? I pray you do, and I pray in agreement with Voddie Baucham that the Lord would awaken in you a righteous passion for committing to His call and striving to win the wonderful reward God has created you for. Ask God to make clear to you the things you need to change in your life; the things you need to remove and how to replace them. And as you grow, stand on where God has taken you. You are no longer ignorant. You have no excuses (John 15:22).
To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor and immortality, he will give eternal life. But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger. There will be trouble and distress for every human being who does evil: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile; but glory, honor and peace for everyone who does good: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile. For God does not show favoritism. Romans 2:7-11
Lord I pray for my readers whose hearts you are speaking to right now and for myself Lord. You know the struggles I fight each day and the temptations I bow to. I pray you would awaken in me the vigor and strength, authority and power that You’ve given me; that I would commit to the call you’ve placed on my life. I have failed time and time again, but I continue to promise to strive and continue to get back up and try again. I will strive until the day I meet you at the judgment throne. Lord, I pray that You would be with me for my efforts are futile without You. Awaken in me and my readers that You are speaking to a passion to do all it takes and whatever Your Holy Word instructs us to do to be used as a means to an end! In Jesus name I pray! Amen!
AFAJournal: What role does the local church play in changing the culture through multi-generational faithfulness*?
Baucham: I believe the church is a family of families. One way we have gone astray is that we see the church as a corporation that breaks us into individual groups. We have something for this group and something for that group and we are breaking families apart when we get to the church house. We’re expecting church programs to disciple our children rather than that happening in the home in the context of the family.
*The concept that God intends for the home to be where Christian children are spiritually nurtured into mature adults who can influence all spheres of life for Christ. At the same time, every new generation of Christian parents must pass their faith on to their own children.
Quoted from the article Christian Activism Begins at Home by the American Family Association.
Amen, Voddie Baucham! Discipling, training, and the establishment of faith in children must begin within the home. Parents need to stop relying on the church to do this for them and take on the responsibility they’ve been given by God to train their children! As Mr. Baucham stated, instead, the church’s role is “to come alongside families and help them fulfill their call.”
Our young men need training from home and especially through the examples of their fathers to be self-controlled, worthy of respect, temperate, and sound in faith, in love and in endurance.
Our young women also need training from the home and especially through the examples of mothers to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be keepers of their home, to be kind and to be subject to their husbands.
This goes deeper than just a harmony in the home or a ministry to the world – but represents Christ in such a way that when we fail to be as God has called us to be, Satan gains a foothold on someones heart. This can result in a malignant behavior towards the Word of God, toward the family, or toward the Holy Spirit.
This is a great calling on the family and should not be looked upon as the work of the church. As Mr. Baucham stated, the church is a family of families and we must remember we all have a role in that!
Being a Keeper at Home…
“Being a keeper at home is a holy mission; it is a rewarding duty that we as women are to passionately undertake. As part of our sacred call, we are to wisely build a godly, spiritual dynasty (Proverbs 14:1) by helping our husbands advance seven culture-transforming missions which Doug Phillips has summarized so well:
The household is the God-ordained seat of education. It is the first place where we are to develop and communicate a distinctively Christian aesthetic for culture. The home is not to be relegated to a mere place for consumption but transformed into a powerful tool for industry and production. In the household (not the state welfare system agency) we find God’s true pattern for multi-generational, covenantal care. The home, not even the temple or church meeting house, has always been the God-ordained primary locus for daily worship. Our homes not only provide us with a platform to honor God’s non-optional commands for one-anothering and hospitality, but they were designed to be the most powerful forums for evangelism and discipleship in the Christian’s arsenal.
Ladies, we have a great and glorious work before us. Keeping the home has been entrusted to us by God. Under the leadership of our husbands, we are to train up our children in the way they should go (Proverbs 22:6); we are to create a beauty and comfort within our homes (Proverbs 31:22); and the work of our hands should reflect industry and productivity (Proverbs 31:13-21). We are to worship alongside our children, teaching them the laws of God (Proverbs 6:20) night and day (Deuteronomy 6:6-7). We are commanded to practice hospitality to strangers and friends alike (1 Peter 4:8-9)–sacrificing in love a portion of ourselves (1 John 3:16) to those who enter our homes.”
~Excerpt from Pages 34-35 of Passionate Housewives Desperate for God by Jennie Chancey and Stacy McDonald
My additional sentiments:
Many women see staying home as a mundane task that is a waste of the gifts and talents that the Lord has most certainly blessed us with. It is clear that serving our husbands and children is a blessed task to undertake and should be seen as such; that keeping the home should be looked at as offering “more opportunities for savoring achievement than almost any other work” (p.36 Cheryl Mendelson). It is, and has been my desire to achieve this. Though I fail miserably, more often than not, I praise God that He continues to train me and help me grow to be the woman He’s called me to be in this amazing and fulfilling job at hand.
My father once told me I was a catalyst (a person or thing that precipitates an event or change). How true that is for all of us. The magnitude this role plays in my home is limitless and I’m excited to continue to take on such a wonderful privilege! The overflowing effect that this has on the world is just as exciting! I am also humbled by it as well. It is not a job to handle flippantly.
Serving our families is an opportunity to portray the very service that Jesus came here to do (Matthew 20:28). Serving our own husbands and humbling ourselves to be the counterpart, the helper suitable, the companion and friend of whom they need, is not a negative thing but is what God calls us to do and brings glory to God (Matthew 18:4, 23:12; Luke 1:52, 14:7-14, 18:14; Romans 12:16; Philippians 2-8; James 4:6, 10; 1 Peter 5:5-7; etc.). As does serving our children to help them know the Lord and love Him each day of their lives; helping them to avoid the struggles of disobedience, rebellion, and despair that is inevitable without godly guidance and examples; and helping them build godly habits from the start rather than have the struggle as adults to change their mindsets and ways to those of the Lord (Ephesians 6:4).
I pray the Lord continues to put the loving and gentle people in my life who admonish me in the role He’s called me to fulfill (Titus 2:4-5). I pray that I would take it on with a full heart and be as Nehemiah as he was rebuilding the walls of Jerusalem (Nehemiah 2:11-20, chapters 4, 6-8 and 10:28-29). No matter how many distractions come, I will refuse to come down and stop the work that is at hand (Nehemiah 6:1-5), and no matter what ideas people might fabricate in their minds about the calling on my lifestyle or about me in general (Nehemiah 6:5-8); I do as Nehemiah did and ask the Lord to strengthen me in His work (Nehemiah 6:9).
Lord, I enter in! I separate myself from the world (Romans 12:1-3) and those who wish to intimidate me as the men who attempted to intimidate Nehemiah (Nehemiah 6:10-14). I, alone, am by no means strong enough to do this, but with Christ, all things are possible (Matthew 19:26). In your strength I will push on and stand firm as Your ambassador (2 Corinthians 5:16-21). May all the glory go to You! Bless me and keep me! In Jesus’ name I pray! Amen.