The Excellent Wife Chapter 8: Home - The Wifes Domain
"The home is the wife's domain. What are you going to make of yours?"
"A godly wife is organized and works hard to operate her home with the least possible chaos. She also creates an optimistic, joyful atmosphere for her family. Gos has always intended the home to be the wifes domain. Page 71.
This chapter is probably one of my favorites so far, meaning, I am a firm believer in the wifes responsibility to take care of her home (1) in keeping it in order and (2) in making it a haven for her family. Yes, it's very hard, yes, it can be a thankless job and double yes, it does not end at 5pm or even 6pm. But , with all my heart I am grateful to God to be able to stay home with my 3 year old daughter and take care of my home. I am fee (because of my husband) to fulfill my role as keeper of our home and I am also training my daughter to be ready to do the same in her home someday.
I have been on both sides of this issue as a Christian woman and mother. I worked outside of the home as a single mother for 12 years before I met and married my husband. Now, as a married wife and mother, my husband has given me the ability to stay at home and I am blessed beyond measure.
That being said, lets start where Martha starts:
"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
"So I would have younger widows marry, bear children, manage their households, and give the adversary no occasion for slander. For some have already strayed after Satan. 1 Timothy 5:14-15
What is a worker at home... "it is some one who guards the dwelling or is the keeper of the household,...one has to be at home in order to keep your home." That statement brought both a smile an a familiar knot in my stomach when I read it. When my daughter was 2 years old I got involved in a local Moms Group where we lived. It was great, I got out of the house, talked with other adults and my daughter had children to play with. What more could I ask for. After a few months, I realized we were spending 4 out of 5 days outside of the house. Something didn't seem right about that, but I just couldn't put my finger on it. The moms were great, I enjoyed their company, may daughter had friends...but there was something else...Things at home were less the organized and I found myself spending more money each week then I usually did either on eating out or buying foods at the supermarket that could be prepared very quickly. I thought how I wished I could find some help to organize my home and my priorities better. I found a website called Biblical Womanhood, and it opened my eyes. Having my priorities in the wrong place made for a very chaotic home. My husband and my so never complained during that time, but when things began to change I saw them change as well. I'm not saying that things are in order all the time, because I fail quite often, but knowing my role in the family that God has given me helps me keep from going to far to the left or to the right.
I have a schedule set up for my days. It has changed a lot since my son is home from college for the summer, but the morning and afternoon routines are basically the same. For me a schedule helps keep me focused (and I need focus). It's not a hard and fast rule, it just lets me know how my day is flowing. And if things need to change, I change them with no problem.
Martha also talks about creating a godly atmosphere in your home. That is something that will not happen by itself. It's something that I have to purpose to do for my family as well as myself. I find that the best way to keep my mind and heart in the right place is to start my day with the word of God. Again, I am not perfect at it, but I try my best to get up early to read and pray before my family's day begins. And throughout the day my daughter and I sing what we call the Hymn of the Month... to keep our minds on the Lord as we do our daily jobs.
Theses were just a couple of things that came to mind as I read this chapter. Being a keeper of my home is an important responsibility to me, and I don't want to treat it lightly. My husband provides for his family by going out of the home to work, I too can provide things for my family by making sure that their home is a safe, nurturing, and God glorifying place to be.
Please join us in this book study with Leslie at Light Came. She also has links to other women who have shared on this chapter. You can see it here.