Thursday, April 22, 2010

Desperate for Discipleship

Below is an edited version of a message I wrote to the Above Rubies Yahoo Group several months ago. 

Can you relate?

"Do you ever wish you could just be a fly-on-the-wall in another woman's home? 

Someone who is clearly living her faith, is homeschooling a whole raft of well-behaved kids, honors her husband, and just seems to be living a life filled with grace? 

No, not perfect, but a whole lot further along this road than you are?

I want so badly to do this wife and mother thing "right"--yet, so often, I feel like I'm floundering. 

I wasn't raised to be a homemaker--In many ways, I was taught to think that homemaking was beneath me. Yet, here I am, married for 10 years. I'm happy to be able to love my husband, be home with my 3 small children, and to have a fourth on the way. I certainly know more about homemaking and raising children than I did 10 years ago, but I still have so far to go.

I do all the reading that I can, I listen to MP3 sermons as much as possible, I spend time with online resources and "friends", and ask questions of whomever will give me two minutes...

...but its not as though this world is swarming with Proverbs 31 women, and most of them are extremely busy with their own families. I desperately want one of them to take me under her wing and say, 

"Hey sweetie, bring your kids over to my house...I'll teach you what I know".

I don't need another ladies retreat, woman's ministries brunch, or small group Bible study with nursery provided. This is what the older women in my church seem to want and thrive on, but it is really the opposite of what I need. I need someone to teach me how to get my fingernails dirty down here in the trenches.

Please, if we're going to do a ladies Bible study or special social event, let me bring my kids along, and teach me how to teach them to behave if you think I'm messing it up. 

I'm so tired of having to try to figure this all out on my own."



Feelings of inadequacy. 

Fear of failure.

These are all common emotions among homemakers, especially those of us who are "swimming upsteam" as it were.

We're making choices that are unpopular and misunderstood by many--not only in the "world", but also in the church.

Choosing to be homemakers in the first place can make us the object of ridicule. 

More that 2 children? You're weird.

Homeschooling? Yup, definitely weird.

Submitting to your husband? Now you're really nuts.

Add to that any other non-mainstream choices you might be making for your family. Can't you ever just be normal?

It makes you hungry for like-minded fellowship, doesn't it?

More than that, it makes us desperate for discipleship.

The problem is, who exactly is available to do this job? Who is supposed to be doing it? Are they?

Titus 2:3-5 tells us that this task falls on the shoulders of "older women":

Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good,
so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands,
to love their children,
to be sensible, pure, workers at home,
kind, being subject to their own husbands,
so that the word of God will not be dishonored.
Titus 2:3-5 (NASB)

Sadly, there are very few older Titus 2 women around to teach us. Those that do exist are very valuable indeed.

When I first decided that I would stay home with any children God would bless us with, I told myself and others that "being home" wouldn't last forever. When my children grew up and left home, I would find a job outside the home to occupy my time. I would probably go back to school and get a master's degree.

I've recently changed my mind about this. My value at home doesn't end when my children are grown. LORD willing, I'll be helping my own daughters and daughters-in-law in a Titus 2 way. There will be a new generation of young wives and mothers in my church, women who are desperate for discipleship, and I will be available to give it.

I may not be able to easily solve my current Titus 2 problem, but I can decide that I will not leave the young women who come after me in a similar place.


Anonymous said...

YES I can relate. I grieve that my mother's generation was out to lunch with the feminist movement. WHERE are my mentors? I am also desperate for discipleship. You've got a new blog reader. Guess we'll hafta settle for online fellowship for now ... sigh. Thank you so much for eloquently and graciously saying what my bratty mind gripes about all the time to myself. I need an attitude adjustment too it looks like. I just want to cry - it hurts so much to be on our own in this!! I know He is enough.

Jodi said...

Great post, Tiana! I want to be able to do this for other women when mine are grown too! And though we have much to learn, I think we can also be the "older women" and begin by helping younger women just starting college and such to see that God's plan isn't just for them to go be successful in the real world!!

Diana said...

Amazing post! It echos my own heart so well! My mother was corrupted long before my journey into motherhood and was never a Christian role-model. I have longed for a mentor and it has been a long, lonely road. I feel your pain but He IS enough.

Sherry Lauser said...

Thank you! For expressing so well the need for Titus 2 women and for your vision of being one yourself. You are already encouraging others.

Mrs. Teasley said...

"I've recently changed my mind about this. My value at home doesn't end when my children are grown. LORD willing, I'll be helping my own daughters and daughters-in-law in a Titus 2 way. There will be a new generation of young wives and mothers in my church, women who are desperate for discipleship, and I will be available to give it.

I may not be able to easily solve my current Titus 2 problem, but I can decide that I will not leave the young women who come after me in a similar place."

I have recently came to that same decision. Wonderful encouragement for the day. :-)

The Schulz Family said...

I am pretty fortunate that for the most part the ladies of our church live Titus 2-but unfortunately are still somewhat jaded by the feminist movement. I love being what God has chosen for me to be (in the world but not of the world) but it can be a struggle at times to find people who live that way as well. So well put!

Carol Flett said...

I love this post. Even those of us older women who have made lots of mistakes in our lives can enrich the lives of others by sharing the lessons we learned along the way. I guess that's one of the reasons why I started I want Grandparents to see their responsibility to be the voice of experience, both for their children and for their grandchildren.
My mom was that kind on Mom and Grandma; I want to be the same.
I love to be around women like yourself willing to be mentored but you are a rare breed as well.

Shanna said...

I am convinced that God has those people out there for us. I know many older women in my church for example I can go to. Maybe sometimes we're afraid to approach them. Almost 4 years ago I started meeting with another woman to share and pray together with for our husbands, children, ourselves, and misc. odds and ends. Others have come along the way and went, but we still are meeting weekly. It is a life source. I have encouraged several women to do the same, but many won't make the time. Or they won't reach out to people they don't know very well. God has promised to meet our needs, we have to trust that He will and then step out of our comfort zones when He leads.

Laura said...

Oh, it feels so good to hear that there are other women out there that have the same convictions as me and feel lonely. I tell my husband all the time I wish we had mentors. I've given this to the Lord and will be patient. Until then, He will be my portion. Thank you for your encouragement and I now see the importance of praying for all women that are seeking mentors - that God will see our hearts' desires and bless us.

Anonymous said...

I can totally relate to this. I was never taught how to cook or keep a house in order. My mom is an ultra-feminist who had my dad cooking and cleaning, so I never got any training. And of course submitting to my husband, in her eyes, is totally wrong. But I'm still going to keep doing what I'm doing. I'm far from perfect...heck, I'm barely making it out of mediocre. But I believe that as long as I'm trying, God keeps blessing me and will help me succeed. So I'm just gonna keep relying on Him to really help me make this house a cozy home for my family.

I figure I've already done the hardest part - changing my mindframe.

Mrs. June Fuentes said...

I recently did a series called 'The Christian Mother Series' you might be interested in. Here is the URL:

There are about 20 posts in the series covering everything from raising daughters and sons to becoming a grandmother. You have to scroll all the way down to start with the first post.

Hope that helps!

Many blessings as you build up your sacred home!

Mrs. June Fuentes

CasualCrafter said...

Great post!
It hit so many of my heart strings...
I love it when I find a post that expresses what I am feeling or going through in such an elegant way... I am not a writer.

I just became a Christian a year ago, but had already felt the calling to be a homemaker and do the wife/mother thing.

The mens ministry has in place mentorship and descipleship programs (especially for new Christians), but the women's ministry is lacking this ... perhaps because even amongst the church, this calling to womanhood is still lacking.

We are now knit into our church well enough that I am begining to receive some mentorship from some experienced women in these areas.

Thanks for the post!

Dawnfouts said...

I enjoyed reading this also...I've noticed that the older women are very hesitant about giving advice. I have a wonderful mother-in-law who is my life source some days, when parenting gets confusing. She offers great insight. But she rarely offers any advice to young moms in our church. Her impression is that new moms think that they know it all. And that her advice is often unwanted, especially since it's "old school". In this era of society seeing spanking as harmful to a child.
Makes me wonder if there are actually women in your church or community that you know who are just waiting to be asked to be a mentor?
Blessings to you as God provides for your needs.

Jessica said...

Wow, I felt this way for so many years. I missed your post on AR, but caught it here. My church has a Titus 2 ministry. We've been in the church for 8 months now. I think what is even more beautiful, is that they don't have to! The older women do it naturally!!! Lord bless you!

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I'm a Stay-at-Home, Christian, "crunchy" mama. I have been blessed with the calling to be a godly wife and mother. I am passionate about bringing up my children in the discipline and instruction of the LORD, through home education and discipleship. Helpmeet to my best friend and soulmate, Christopher since 1/29/2000, and mama to four little blessings, including a tiny, precious, newborn baby girl.

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Bible--Child's Story Bible by Catherine Vos, Apologia Biblical World View Book 1, "Who is God and Can I Really Know Him?"
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