Thursday, April 9, 2009

"You Arrogant, Sexist Pig!"

There, now you don't have to email me to share those same words. I want to write a preface for this week's post:
There are scores of single mothers who are sacrificing and working as hard as they can to rear Godly children. Don't quit! It can be done! I love using Timothy as an example here. The Bible says in 1 Timothy 1:5
When I call to remembrance the unfeigned faith that is in thee, which dwelt first in thy grandmother Lois, and thy mother Eunice; and I am persuaded that in thee also.

Here we read of Timothy's spiritual upbringing, which came predominantly from his mother and grandmother. We read of no spiritual father in the picture at all. What was the result? A Godly young man esteemed very highly in the Word of God. Without a doubt, rearing a Godly child as a single mother is a more challenging task, but it can be done, and I praise those who are doing so. Don't quit, keep serving and investing in the promises of God's Word. I have known quite a few young people that have grown to serve the Lord faithfully from single parent homes, but this does not take away from God's Word. The promises of God are sure when a Godly father and mother are both fulfilling their God given roles.
This brings us to the next question on our questionnaire:
My mother spends most of her time:
A: At Home...50%
B: At Work...40%
C: At Church...4%
D: Away from me...6%

Again, our blog pole mirrored the questionnaire's results. Here comes the statement that will cause some to want to comment like the title reads: I believe with all my heart that the mother should spend the greatest portion of her time at home being a home maker.
I preached a sermon once titled, "What ever happened to Aprons?" The gist of the sermon was this...we have accepted the world's philosophy of daycares, camps, and schools with working mothers, nannies, and babysitters. As a result, we are losing our young people.
Titus 2 speaks of aged women "be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers...teachers of good things...teaching young women to lover their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not all things shewing thyself a pattern of good works:"
That is what we have gotten away from. What ever happened to aprons? Now I understand that the "Proverbs 31 woman" considered a field and bought it, but I also know that everything at home was being taken care of by her first, before she did such. I am not against ladies bringing in an income of some sorts as long as the home is NOT being neglected. "You arrogant, se.." Don't say it, I already relieved you of that opportunity.
Now, there maybe instances where the mother 'must' bring in an income to survive. That, I believe is pictured in Proverbs 31. Just be sure 'survive' does not consist of "nanny, daycare, eating out because no time to fix dinner, camps, extra-curricular, cleanning lady, second car to drive to work, insurance for that car, cable t.v., cell phones for everyone" bills. Many times, in many families, there would be much more in the bank if mother did not work and have to pay for all these non essentials.
But I digress...the Bible says much about the importance of a mother. To be honest, there are more examples of Godly mothers in the Bible than Godly fathers. One of my favorite verses in the Bible describing God is
As one whom his mother comforteth, so will I comfort you;
Isaiah 66:13
God uses the comfort that only a mother can give as an example of the comfort He provides. We all understand that mommy's kiss is the only thing that makes our Boo-boos better. What I am saying is, we need more mothers at home loving and comforting and teaching their children. We need more aprons, home made biscuits, and tops of book cases dusted. We need more than an empty house to come home to at the end of the day.
Here is what has happens...Darla (17 year old IFB young lady)has everything. The family gets a nice vacation every year, has two nice cars (and now she has one too), gives a good tithe at church and loved for it. Darla's family lives in a nice home, she has the newest cell/camera/ipod/computer/entertainment system phone. Just one thing is missing-mom. She has been reared by babysitters and daycares and her Christian school. Darla is entering the years of marriage potential and she can't sew a button, hem a skirt, or boil water. Darla guesses Windex is a new product from microsoft. Darla has been faithful to her youth department, where a man has been her teacher for 6 years. She has learned from him and her volleyball and basketball coach to be agressive, loud, in charge, and a vocal leader. The farthest things from her thoughts are "loving and obeying a husband, loving children, discreet, chaste, keeper at home." Never has a mother taught her these things, and as a result she will date around, pursue her career, make a lot of money, and teach her daughter she has at age 37 to do the same...and "The Word of God is blasphemed." Titus 2:5

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Quality time or Quantity time? How about both?

This week's survey is a perfect example of a previously mentioned principle - sowing and reaping. The real question is , do we know exactly what we are sowing? Are we really aware of what is going into the hearts and minds of our youth and whether or not it is pleasing to God, much less to us? Please read carefully the following quote:

You know that the beginning is the most important part of any work, especially in the case of a young and tender thing; for that is the time at which the character is being formed and the desired impression is more readily taken...Shall we just carelessly allow children to hear any casual tales which may be devised by casual persons, and to receive into their minds ideas for the most part the very opposite of those which we should wish them to have when they are grown up?
We cannot...Anything received into the mind at that age is likely to become indelible and unalterable; and therefore it is most important that the tales which the young first hear should be models of virtuous thoughts.....

This quote is from Plato, the ancient Greek scholar. It has been understood for centuries, the importance of the quality of material placed before our youth. Yet strangely, we behave as though it is a completely new realm, unknown to man previous to this generation. People will argue that we have Sunday School and church to give them the proper instruction. Again, going back to the idea of sowing and reaping, can we really compare 2 hours of teaching with at a minimum 10 hours of flesh-appeasing entertainment? Even if you throw in the hours at a Christian school, consider the difference of sowing into ground that is hard and resistant and sowing into ground that is soft and fertile. One thing I've learned about our modern youth is the prevailing attitude that refuses to be taught; almost as if they have nothing to learn and no desire to learn it. Our appetites are for entertainment, not education.
So then, what are we teaching our youth? Self-denial or self-gratification? Serving others or serving self? Developing a godly character or developing a godless materialism? Every generation has a desire for the following generation to be better off than they were. Defining the term better off is where our trouble lies. In modern times, being better off is having no consequences for our actions; no opportunity to face defeat; no chance of getting our hands dirty; no fear that there may be someone out there who may be better than us at something, thereby causing us to lose self-esteem. This is what we are sowing - Do we like what we are reaping? Our youth are being raised by everyone but their parents; coaches, teachers, music instructors, youth pastors, not to mention TVs, video games, movies, musicians, etc. When was the last time we sat down and had a real conversation with our child? Do we know the spiritual state of our children concerning their salvation or are we trusting a decision made at a camp or conference? Are we aware of not just who their friends are, but what they are, as in the quality of their character? In the New Testament, Jesus Christ gives several parables on talents and stewardship. We, as parents, are given stewardship of our children. Based on our performance thus far, will we one day hear, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant"? We have a great responsibility. Let us be busy about the Father's business; let us be busy about the business of being fathers.