Generation Cedar

I ran across this older picture of Mallie. So yeah, maybe as we read through Proverbs 31 we'll hang out in the "clothes herself with fine linens" section.

“Unless God gives you the unique gift of singleness, the Bible says ‘it is a good thing’ for you to get married and have a family. Raise your hand if you hope to be a wife and mother one day”, I asked my little girls, down to the two-year-old.

And then I read….

“An excellent wife who can find? She is far more precious than jewels.The heart of her husband trusts in her, and he will have no lack of gain. She does him good, and not harm, all the days of her life.” Proverbs 31:10-12

That’s packed full of good stuff! “Who can find her?” She was rare then and rare now. An “excellent wife” isn’t just born. I want my girls to know that raising children and being a wife is a monumental task. One that will require all their energies, all their hearts and all their attention. It will utilize all their gifts and creativity. It will take enormous wisdom and fortitude. It is a full time job. That is, to be an “excellent” wife. A “virtuous” wife. It’s a job for which they must begin now to prepare.

We must do the counter-cultural job of teaching our girls, from a young age, that they are likely entering upon the job of a lifetime–a job that will change the world if they embrace it. We must be willing to bear the criticism (ironic, isn’t it?) and teach them to as well. We must learn to give an answer in truth and in love.

It always stumps me that the job of helping a husband, running an efficient home and raising the next generation has been ridiculed into a tiny corner until it is hardly recognized as a “job” anymore. Marriages, the ministry of home, children-turning-adults…how could any other pursuit be more worth our following?

That part doesn’t surprise me. What does surprise me, and saddens me, is that Christians followed suit. We know better. And until we reclaim the home as a place in which soldiers are raised, marriages become a reflection of the gospel, and the family gains enough strength to reach beyond itself and lend a life-saving hand to the lost, we will continue to wonder why the church is impotent and our society ravished.

Yes, it takes time to undo generations of effects that pull some from home. But we have to have a “true north” starting point. We have to recognize truth before we can follow it.

It is our one mission, dear Church, to glorify Him with our lives. It is our mission to stop bending the knee to a humanistic god. It is our mission to raise children who will carry the Light of Christ, the Hope of the world, into the next generation.

Let’s do it.

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19 Responses

  1. Thank you so much for putting into words what I wish I had heard earlier in life. I hope it is o.k. but I repost your blog fairly often because I feel that other women need to hear this perspective. You have made a difference in my life!

  2. Two days ago I was fighting with my DD8 over math. She was telling me how boring it was and that she didn’t need it. So I said “Well you will need this when you grow up. What do you plan to do in life?” Her reply was “I want to be a wife and a mother like you!” It took me completely by surprise only because I was feeling so miserable that morning, beating myself up for being such a cranky and lousy Mom. To think that in spite of my bad example she wanted to be a Mom was an encouragement from God. “Well, you still need math. how are you going to bake, and shop and measure things? And who is going to teach Math to your children?” There our fight ended and we went on with Math. 🙂

  3. Lovely post! I am so glad God is changing my heart so I can reflect Christ a little more clearly each day…well, hopefully. Your blog has been a great tool He has used. <3 Thanks!

    1. You are still seeing the old version–I’ve got a completely new look! Just look in your browser and find “tools” and, depending on which browser your using, you’ll need to “clear cache” or delete cookies or “clear browsing data”. That should allow you to see it. Some have reported simply refreshing the page to see it.

  4. Wonderful, refreshing post, Kelly! I wholeheartedly agree w/ you! It is so encouraging to know that there are other families out in this world who are like-minded, because all the criticism from the world (& even those w/in the “church”) can so easily discourage one’s effort to press on. Thank you for your post!

  5. In the United States christian parents can to a certain degree rest asured that the Lord will provide christian husbands for their daughters.
    That is not the case in Europe and other parts of the world where christianiy is a minority and christian single men are rare.
    I believe from the Scriptures that a christian should only marry another christian.
    That puts christian women in those places above mentioned in a difficult situation, because some of them will never get married. Or marry late.
    I myself did not get married till i was 37. why? for the simple reason that the Lord did not provide a christian husband for me before that. Opportunities i would have had many, but no one was the right one.
    And I know many christian women who are over 30 and single. For the same reason, not because they do not want to get married.
    In my particular case, I am happy I had a college degree and a way of sustaining myself finantially. My widowed mother has already enough expenses as to care for her 3 daughters.
    I am happy now as a homeschool stay-at-home mom, but am well aware that that will not be the destiny of every christian girl.
    I do not think that one size fits all in this regard.
    I do not desagree with you, Kelly, I just think that what you say is part of the picture, not the whole one.

    1. Hi Carolina:

      It’s interesting you bring this up. I’ve been reading the book, “Feminine Threads,” and women in the first centuries after the apostolic age faced the same problems. However–and I’m not saying I agree with this–they did marry into pagan families and often brought about the conversion of those families. Or, the women stayed single and used their wealth to aid bishops and missionaries, or start monasteries.

      http://www.christianbook.com/feminine-threads-women-tapestry-christian-history/diana-severance/9781845506407/pd/506407?product_redirect=1&Ntt=506407&item_code=&Ntk=keywords&event=ESRCP

  6. There are a lot of great things to chew on in your post, Kelly. I have a few questions I wanted to ask.

    I was wondering about the sentence “Marriages, the ministry of home, children-turning-adults…how could any other pursuit be more worth our following?”. Specifically, what are you saying about the “children-turning-adults” age group (especially girls/young women, since that seems to be the context here)? Are you speaking about in-home versus out-of-home employment for young women? What is your opinion regarding young unmarried women seeking employment outside the home?

    Not trying to challenge you, Kelly, just earnestly desiring to understand where you’re coming from. Thanks!

      1. Oh that’s fine, Arrows. Actually, the reason I wrote “children-turning-adults” was simply to turn our attention toward the reality that we’re not just “raising babies”, but that these little people will soon be big people and we need to keep that focus as we train them each day. Make sense?

        1. Sure does! That’s just what I thought today when I reread that part. And you’re so right about those little people rapidly growing to be big people. My kids are all about 3-4 years apart from one to the next (ages 4-21 now), so I’ve got bigs, middles, and littles, and it really doesn’t seem like it was that long ago that my 6’1″, 21-year-old son was one of the littles!

          Thanks for your response, Kelly, and the reminder to keep our focus as we train them each day. So important!

  7. I appreciated what Carolina had to say simply because my oldest daughter is 27 and not married.When they are little we tend to think(I did)that they are going to become young adults and “find” the one they are to marry but it has not worked that way for my daughter..yet..When she first graduated she wanted to stay home with me for a few months and help and she did and it was fun and a Blessing. After several months of this,she got a job at a preschool and really enjoyed it.She went away to Christian college in her early 20’s and enjoyed it and saw what it was like in the Big World..lol..she ran out of money and was homesick..very homesick..came home and works in a big Christian School here now in the pre-school dept.and loves it.She lives at home with us.She has 45 hrs. of training she took locally to work with preschoolers..had to take I think six tests for this certificate.This helped her get hired.I believe it is requiered by law in the state of Fl. when you work with children. She see’s the moms trying to find a balance in it all and she wants to be home with her kids someday.She would really like to get married and have kids but it just hasn’t happened yet.As a mom to four grown kids now..when they get older and have real interests, that we need to encourage them and be the best cheer leader..(my term here) we can be for them.She has had a couple of different jobs at preschools and has worked at Books-A-Million..Someone actually made a comment to me about her working at Books-A-Million about what she would be exposed to..She is in her 20’s!! They will be exposed to the World folks..While she went to Christian College..In California-Golden State Baptist College..and let me just say when she made this decision she was in her early 20’s and it was a whole lot easier then sending a just graduated 17 or 18 yr.old..She worked at “google” while in California and that was quite an eye opener for her..lol.So I guess I am trying to share here that as they become adults that they will have interests and desires to keep learning.We have learned to encourage them and not stifle them.I am not saying there is anything wrong with a daughter who wants to stay home and help for a time..but,in all honesty I can’t see my 27 yr.old unmarried daughter at home with me all day long because in all honesty she would not be challenged and she would be bored.Not because the things she would be doing here are boring and not challenging but because those things are MY JOB TO DO!And I love it and I know that someday when she is married with kids she will love it.She is very nurturing and loving with her youngest brother and does help out when time permits..She serves and loves her Dad and Brothers and knows how to do all that but once again..It’s my job.Because she’s out in the working world and see’s the struggles that moms have she does want to be a stay at home wife and mom someday but it just hasn’t happened yet. She makes a difference in the lives of the children she teaches and the parents also..Isn’t that what we are supposed to be doing as Christian parents when they are little..training them to go out into a lost world that so desperately needs Christ and let their light shine.Well..I’ll stop rambling..I enjoyed the post Kelly but just had to share from a mom with adult kids still in the home. Blessings!

  8. Thanks for sharing your story, Keri.
    I only have sons, but if I had daughters, I do not think I would rise them focusing everything in marriage, because if they did not get married, I am sure it would be very frustrating for them.
    I think that the stay-at-home daughter paradigma is a good one, but not the only good one. It might be a biblical one, but is not a biblical command. And if it is not a command, we have freedom here, freedom to act wisely.
    I also think that the SAHD model only works well if the girl marries somewhat youung. I also believe that model does not work in all countrires of the world.
    I completely agree that that the world outside -college or else- can be dangerous to a young mind, probably more for boys than for girs. We need wisdom there. And flexibility. I do not think that God has the same plans for every christian girl who is single.
    Your daughter, Keri, may marry later. Or not marry at all. Her value as a woman will not depend on her being a wife or a mother, but on being the woman God wants her to be.

  9. First I want to say: what a nice website you have!

    I recognize what others above wrote. Tomorrow I’m turning 26 and I would love to be a wife and mother. Actually, I raised my hand after reading the first part of your post ;).

    Today I said to the Lord: “Please, help me not to look to what I haven’t got, but to what I got. Not all the time longing for something to come, but be content with the current. Let every day be for You alone, to honor You and to the building of Your Kingdom.”

    Yet, I love your post. I also believe it’s very important to raise girls the way you wrote about it. Because married or not married (yet) we all need a right attitude, wisdom, skills etc. to serve God and others. Who ever those others may be… our family, friends, people around us where we minister to, and maybe later also our husband and children.

    Sometimes I have to say to myself: do’nt focus on having a husband, children, but focus on walking with Christ, growing in faith, developing a right attitude, skills… that’s what you will need when the time ‘s there… don’t waste your precious young life.

    I trust the Lord will show me His path in His own time.

    May God bless you all!

    P.s. in my environment a lot of christians are married at a young age. So I don’t recognize what Carolina said about marrying late in Europe.

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