Photo Credit: Lori L. Stalteri
By Heather, Contributing Writer
A few months ago, with the birth of my first son, I became a full-time homemaker. Before my son was even born, I was frequently asked the question from all kinds of people of whether or not I would be going back to work. I always responded by saying, “As long as we aren’t suffering financially, our goal is for me to stay at home with him!” Sometimes my response was met with supportive remarks such as, “Oh how wonderful!” or “I hope that works out for you!” However, occasionally I received very perplexed looks and was asked why I don’t want to go back to work and would rather be a homemaker.
“What are you going to do with all your extra time?”, “Don’t you think you will be bored?”, “Are you sure you guys can make it on just one income?” “Why don’t you just have your parents or in-laws watch the baby?”
While I’m sure a few of these people might have disapproved of my husband’s and my decision for me to be a stay at home mom, I honestly think most of these people were just confused! I mean think about it, in the world we live in today, it would seem that modern conveniences have eliminated the need for homemakers. Not to mention, it’s not like we live in a male ruled society anymore where women are looked down upon in the work force and are forced to be stuck at home! There are so many options now a days for women! Why waste my life on an occupation that seems so….unnecessary?
Well, unfortunately when I am put on the spot I tend to get flustered. Needless to say, I can’t think of a time when I offered a very eloquent or complete response as to why my husband and I have made this decision. Which is why I would like to make a list of those reasons here! It seems to me that most people do not consider homemaking as a viable career option not so much because they think there is something wrong with it, but because they have never been taught why it is significant. As I go through the reasons why I have chosen to be a homemaker, as well as the Biblical reasons that support my conviction, please understand that I am not trying to place judgement on anyone who has not chosen the same path or is not able to be a homemaker at this time. I understand that every person’s situation is unique! I simply desire to share my reasons with you and perhaps inspire and encourage you to view your own role as a homemaker, (whether it be full-time or part-time), in a new way!
This month we will cover reasons 1 through 5. Join me next month for Part 2!
Top 10 Reasons why I Have Chosen to be a Homemaker
Reason #1: God designed women to be the keeper of the home
Most of us are very familiar with the passages from Proverbs 31 and Titus 2. (If you aren’t I encourage you to look them up!) In Proverbs, it describes a women whose primary focus is tending to the needs of those within her home. This woman, described by King Lemuel as the model of the kind of wife to look for, is highly esteemed for her dedication to her home. In Titus 2, Paul exhorts the older women to teach the younger women to be “workers at home”.
It is obvious in Scripture that God greatly values the entity of the home! So much so, that He thought it necessary to create a whole position dedicated just to keeping it. Many women, who believe that there are no distinctions between the sexes, might argue that it is unfair that this role was assigned to women and there is no reason why it can’t be shared equally with men. However, the Bible is clear that while men are the leaders of their homes, women have the responsibility of managing them. This is a good thing!
Think about the men and women you know! Women naturally are more inclined to be nurtures and caregivers and men are more inclined to be providers and protectors. I don’t know any man who would be able to efficiently keep a house, plan and prepare healthful meals, tenderly nurse every owie and boo and boo, and accomplish all the other host of tasks and responsibilities of a homemaker the way that a woman can! Can he physically do these things? Yes of course. But with the same tenderness, and thoughtful care of a women? No. Is that demeaning to men? No! Because men and women are created differently. We are hardwired to do different things. Women cannot lead, protect and provide for a home with the same effect that a man can. Yes we technically can do those things. But we’re not meant to. That’s just the way God designed it. And it is a good thing!
Reason #2: Our first ministry is to our husband and children
This is something I am very passionate about! Most of us think of ministry in terms of helping those outside our home, whether through church or in some other fashion. However, our first and foremost ministry is to our husbands and children! These are the people who God hand-picked to be in our most intimate lives. The way that we live as wives and mothers will forever impact our families! We have the ability to either neglect them for other more “important” ministries and thus produce a negative impact, or to treat the physical, spiritual and emotional tending of our families as the highest privilege and service, thereby doing them the ultimate good.
I love this quote from Carolyn Mahaney that responds to the tendency we have to view ministry outside the home as more important.
“The challenge of ministry in our home is that we do not always feel very “spiritual” when we wash our dishes. It hardly feels significant to scrub our toilet, and we can feel that we are truly ministering when the Lord uses us to communicate a word of wisdom to someone, or He provides an opportunity to share the gospel with our neighbor. That seems like real ministry. And that is real ministry to be sure! But no more so than when we are wiping runny noses or cleaning the bathroom. That is because we have a very narrow view of true spirituality… The Lord wants to help us see the significance of ministry at home. He also wants to expand our vision for the multiple opportunities that we have for ministry in the home. Let’s ask the LORD to help us gain a biblical perspective of our ministry at home.”
~ Carolyn Mahaney – Feminine Appeal
By neglecting our homes for other forms of ministry or occupation, it is like we are saying, “Sorry God. I know you gave me this household and family, but it just isn’t as important as this other thing over here.”
Reason #3: My time and attention to my husband and children will not be divided
While I was working, I constantly would come home exhausted and end up giving my husband my leftovers. I would find myself stressing about work during our time together or becoming anxious on the weekends trying to accomplish all my household tasks as quickly as I could before returning to work on Monday! I can’t imagine how divided I would have felt if I had kids on top of that!
I understand that many women don’t have a choice and they need to work in order to help their families financially. However some women work as an outlet and to pursue their own interests and independence. In these instances, I believe that these women should consider the sacrifice that they are causing their families to make and ask themselves if it is worth the time they are spending on their career.
Reason #4: I want to leave a legacy to my children of service not of self empowerment or self satisfaction
This reason ties into reason #3. The feminist world applauds career women who are powerful and successful. However, I wan to be successful in the eyes of God. And I believe that means seeking His priorities for me and my family. The world may never give any applause for anything I do. But God sees, and He is the only one worth impressing. It is important for me that my children see me living this out and that they learn this lesson as well.
Reason #5: I want to be readily available to my kids and not to miss out on special moments with them
This reason is pretty self explanatory! The fact is, if I’m gone from the home the majority of the time with my mind focused on other things, I will miss important things! My children will also learn that “mom is too busy”. I don’t want to look back and know I could have prevented that.
What about you? What are your reasons for being a homemaker, or why you would like to eventually be one in the future?
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