Generation Cedar

“A wise woman builds her house; but a foolish one pulls it down with her hands.” Prov. 14:1

This verse is so convicting to me…how often do I contribute to the pulling down instead of building?

Interesting, don’t you think, that despite the efforts by the feminist movement and Marxist thought to belittle the role of women at home, the Bible gives us such a strong job?  BUILDING. (Not to mention that we are to wear “strength and dignity” while we build!)

How is this building fleshed out? What does it look like to you?

I think of encouraging words, tender eyes (while a child takes way too long to make a point), patient answers, communicating to our children that we like them and we’re glad they’re here. (Far too often I do not own these “nails and boards.”)

And the harder stuff of less-glamorous grunge.

Of a word fitly spoken.

Of daily work done cheerfully.

Of accepting disappointment and trial with a steadfast spirit that is rooted in the sovereignty of God.

Of working with my husband, not competing against him.

Of a heart-felt talk just at the moment you’d rather drop into bed.

Of a hundred–a thousand small moments of faithfulness. Glorifying God in things we’ve been given to do, no matter how small.

Tonight as we were preparing supper, one child was putting salad in the bowls, another wanted to stir the pots, a couple were frankly underfoot in the way, and my son was washing up some dishes. We were chatting.

It was a normal, working side-by-side moment. Not a spectacular moment, but a pleasant one. And my son said, “Isn’t it easier when we all have a job?”


“It is so much easier. Thank you, Ashton, for helping me.”

We’re all building. Together.

I have quite a bit of enmity (you know if you have read long) against anything that even hints at weakening the family. And I don’t apologize for that. It’s way too often the subtle things that are so destructive…like silent termites, eating away until it’s too late.

Families are composed of people, and I care about people. I care about families.

Once we diminish the importance of this building, and look to our own progress as individuals, it becomes tearing down.

Let’s build.

(Originally published Nov. 2008)

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14 Responses

  1. Once we diminish the importance of this building, and look to our own progress as individuals, it becomes “pulling down”.

    Amen, amen, amen, Kelly! And this is what compels me to continue to sound the alarm against feminism despite the protestations that it isn’t a major problem facing the church.

    How can the gospel be spread with power from people whose families are a mess? What kind of witness do we have when we are consumed with fulfilling our own dreams, our own goals, our own fulfillment, at whatever the cost is to our children?

    I think I’ll stop before I get into a full-on rant, lol.

    Great post, Kelly.

  2. Great post, if only I read it last night. I was a jerk and had to apologize to my husband this morning, and my daughter for giving her a crummy example of a wife/mom. Glad they are so forgiving!

  3. Nice topic. Don’t know what I am saying is relevant here.

    Families are definitely the corner stones of a society and a country. And mothers definitely are the builders.

    I come from a country where family is huge. Marriage is a rite of passage. All two parents. Grandparents lived with us. Extended family is important. I have never met a divorced person before I came to America. Family bond is deep. My parents are and were my biggest influences. All great things. Looking from outside it may seem perfect.

    But there is also a dark side. In my native country, widows rarely if ever remarry. It is frowned upon. Widowers do. There is a horrific thing called dowry and women are burned because of that by their own husbands and inlaws. There is no system like a foster care system. I have rarely if ever seen a down’s child for instance before I came to America. There are lot of orphanages, not many adoptions. Poverty is rampant and there is no minimum wage. Child labor is a sadly a fact of life. A more horrific thing is called bonded labor. Abortion is a form of birth control because of poverty.

    I had the arrogance to think that my native country’s family life was the only way. Until I met women in America who instead of choosing to have an abortion because of ‘mistakes’ carried their children to term. Chose to raise them or give them up for adoptions. I have seen women like Diane of Tomato Soup cake who inspires me so much. She has a strong family from what I see. Her down’s daughter is so accomplished and does things which I, a ‘healthy’ person cannot do like ballet, piano for instance. She has had the heart to adopt children from outside her race, an ‘imperfect’ child. We as a family give to charity. Do things for the impoverished. But to actually have the heart to adopt a child and one who does not look like you in any way needs someone with a special heart.

    I guess what I am trying to say rambling a lot is that a two parent family is not the only example of a good or a strong family. It is also single mothers, single fathers, adopted parents, foster parents and that is something I had to learn which I am grateful America taught me.

  4. Last night I was a crumpled heap of tears, feeling so overwhelmed as laundry, unswept floors, dirty dishes and other undone household tasks loomed all around me. I have struggled so much the past few weeks with pregnancy nausea and utter exhaustion! That coupled with just having moved a couple weeks ago has been really tough on me physically and has left me feeling like a failure as a homemaker. God has used this post for me to be reminded that making a home is so much more than all the household duties. Sure they are important, but not nearly as much as truly building my home, with encouraging words, thoughtful deeds, unselfish attitudes, patience and so forth. I may be struggling to keep the nessecary household things done, but as I lie around feeling too nauseated and dizzy to even sort the laundry, I can build up my children with praise when they are obeying and sharing, I can speak softly and lovingly to my hard working, tired husband, and be build a home with my joyful attitude. Tears are flowing Kelly. I needed this and God has used this to reveal Himself to me today.

    1. Charity, that really blesses me. And I related very much to what you are feeling. I have struggled there too, and always go through a bit of mild depression, etc. in my first trimester. But, through all of it, God has really reminded me that the other stuff will still be there, it IS an excellent time for all of us to be more flexible and learn to serve (my family is SO sweet and eager to serve because there is a new one coming) and sometimes the best moments can be built in just quiet, resting times. If all I can muster the energy for this hour is to lie in the floor and read while a little one plays with my hair, or chat with some of my older ones and listen to what’s on their mind, or open up the Psalms and read out loud, I am building, and I think God says, “you have chosen the greater part”.

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