Raising Homemakers… Like Seriously?

by Jennifer on May 4, 2012 in Purpose, Standing Firm

There is a myth, within our own churches and homeschooling circles, It spans denominations and generations. It has the potential to be more destructive than feminism as it threatens to destroy from the inside out, and it goes something like this:

“A girl should be raised to be a Christian. A girl should not be raised to be a homemaker.”

If you’re in shock, you’re not alone. My heart broke the night I realized what young, Christian, homeschooled ladies are planning for their daughters to be.

The prevalent thoughts behind this are that any girl can be just a homemaker, but that every girl needs to know how to follow God, be kind, caring, make good decisions, work well, and be dilligent. I agree with the second half of that sentence. However, this holds true for sons just as it does for daughters. Our children in general need to be raised with these qualities.

Another complication is that the quote above assumes the two are mutually exclusive.

*When we present perpetual singleness as a “gift” though the LORD never said such a thing, we distort His truths and cause His people to err. When we say that we should only raise our daughters to be Christian young ladies, and willfully deny that we are to teach them how to care for a family we grieve the Holy spririt by not speaking truth.

“Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another…. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God…”

Ephesians 4:25, 30

The truth is:

  • God made women for men (1 Corinthians 11:9)
  • Women were created as helpmeets for husbands (Genesis 2:18)
  • The older women are to teach the younger to be keepers at home (Titus 2:5)
  • All women will need homemaking skills, even the unmarried working women.

Biblical homemaking is priority in the life of a woman. The deception surrounding the “I’m raising my daughter as a Christian, homemaker or not she will always be fine, useful woman” ideology is staggering and is akin to proclaiming that we need only raise our sons as good Christian men, declaring, “Any guy can provide for a family, all boys need to learn how to be good Christian men. Raising my son to be a provider may not be the right path for him.”

God’s perfect plan is for the women to be a helpmeet to her husband, a keeper of the home. We must instill this Biblical truth in our daughters.

*In 1 Corinthians 7, Paul simply gives the church advice regarding singleness vs. marriage. I’ve found nothing in Scripture to insinuate we are “assigned” singleness the same way that we are assigned spiritual gifts.

Jennifer

Jennifer is the cherished wife of a visionary man, and a mother of 11 children. Her deepest desire is to consistently love her husband and children, and to be a diligent and joyful keeper at home, all for the glory of God. She is passionate about encouraging fellow housewives in their highest calling of wife and mother. She and her family produced Homemaking 101 and 201, DVDs for Christian wives and mothers. She can be found blogging at The Focused Homemaker.

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{ 28 comments }

Sade Tagbo May 4, 2012

It’s a really challenging untruth to bring to light. I am glad that while my daughter is very gifted, her gift (writing) can easily be used in the context of being close to her husband and children when the time comes. Our families are precious. I hope more women will come to value this truth and realize that there is plenty of time to see/travel the world after raising children.

Peggy S. May 4, 2012

Yes! Praise the Lord for speaking the truth! Many assume that Titus 2 refers to how we should teach OTHER girls (not our daughters) or how OTHER older women should teach our daughters, seldom thinking it applies to us mothers teaching our own daughters!

Christine May 4, 2012

This was such an interesting post to me. My sister-in-law is a Christian, Homeschooling mother of three. I asked her, with her “tween” daughters present, if she had heard of the Stay-at-Home Daughters movement. She hadn’t, and, as I described it the horror that spread upon the faces of this lady and her daughters was nearly breathtaking.

Angie May 4, 2012

Amen sister! I could whip a house into shape, but didn’t know the Lord…. My skills lack a little now that I have more on my plate…but wouldn’t give up the Lord…and the skills I can do..

Homemaking is more than sweeping a floor or doing a load of dishes. It’s making a house a home, raising a family, etc.

Jo May 4, 2012

She looks well to the ways of her household – let it be so for Christian families.

We are starting now to train our small girls to manage a household. It is also on my list to foster the commercial and philanthropic skills listed in Proverbs 31.

Jennifer, can you clarify? Have you seen a movement to raise daughters to be single for a lifetime?

Christians I know acknowledge singleness as a gift, as in I Corinthians 7:7-8, but one that is apparently rarely bestowed….

Jennifer~Renewing Housewives May 5, 2012

Hi Jo,
Many, many Christians do believe singleness to be a gift, but not a special, rare gift. The movement I’ve noticed is voiced by conservative Christian moms with teenage daughters who have said “You seem to be raising your girls to be ‘married,’ I’m raising my girls to be ‘Christian’.
They aren’t specifically raising their daughters to be single. It doesn’t seem to be purposeful. But they are being raised to desire a 4 year college education and a few years of working before they settle down. They are being raised to believe that singleness is almost a more godly state than being married. And it’s sad, because when we raise our daughters for “just in case,” they will generally end up independant “Christian” career women, even if they marry, homemaking and babies takes a back seat in their heart.
The daughters (ages 15-30) I’ve witnessed with these same beleifs are responding on facebook and writing blog posts that LITERALLY say “The last thing on God’s green earth I’d do is raise my daughter to be a Homemaker”
The title of this post I took right from a 17 year old girl’s blog post because she had come across this blog and was “rubbed the wrong way” She was in shock that mothers would actually raise their daughters “for one path only.” But I disagree that we who raise our daughters to be homemakers are raising them for one path only. We too are raising Christians, Christians who love the Lord and desire to honor Him with their life.
Thanks for writing!!

KM Logan May 4, 2012

This is so true. I used to work for a Christian school and one of the teachers said, oh so and so just wants to get married and have kids. I could have exploded. But I didn’t ; ) I simply said well that’s what I plan on doing.

Just Me May 4, 2012

Being that longed-for Christian means being able to care for your own…denying your family makes you worse than an infidel, eh? If you don’t know the arts of homemaking, that is worrisome. Men as well as women. Men need to learn to deny self, ignoring all the toys and entertainment out there, in favor of others…the most important others always being Their Family. There are just different aspects to this one duty, making a Home.

Melissa May 4, 2012

I agree that girls should be taught to be homemakers. But I also think we should encourage our daughters to always follow Gods will and calling and if that means having to work outside of the home, then we need to be prepared and ready to go at His bidding. I have two young children and while I desire more than anything to stay at home with them, nothing has worked out where I can. I stayed at home with them for over 3 years and I tried home based businesses and blogs, eBay, Etsy, etc all the while praying and asking God to have His will with our financial situation. Nothing worked out and everything I tried always fell through. After a lot of prayer and begging God to show me what to do a door was open for me to go to work (I work at a Christian daycare where I can take my kids with me!). I honestly feel like it was a job sent to me from God and I am so thankful!
So while I will hope and pray that my daughter will get to be a stay at home mom, I am also going to teach her that she needs to always follow the will of the Lord.
Great post though!

DonnaJ May 4, 2012

AMEN! WE are/were raising our daughters to be Christian women who are busy at home! And pray that they Lord gives them young men as husbands who honor that desire for our daughters. There is nothing more important in a young woman’s life more than honoring/worshipping her Lord, and serving her husband & family in the home. Thanks for speaking the truth.

Diana May 4, 2012

*Love*Love*Love*Love*Love*

Renee May 4, 2012

Amen, this is a great post!!!!

Joluise May 5, 2012

Please don’t forget that many Christian women do work outside the home but we are still keepers of our homes just as you do. As I wrote only recently – I cook all my meals from scratch, we eat healthy, I keep a clean home, I support my husband and I have raised my sons. Plus I do the work that the Lord has given me to do – our lives aren’t all the same and the Lord gives us many and different roles – your daughters may also. Its very important to not look at women like me as lesser Christians and not train your daughters to do likewise. It would have to be the biggest gripe on blogging land I have.

And even though I work does not mean I consider my family less precious than stay at home
My mother was my wonderful example, both to how a Christian woman should conduct her life and her ability to work as a teacher and be keeper of her home and she did it brilliantly. The Lord was her guiding light and still is at 80.

Blessed Mama May 5, 2012

I just loved this post! I have two young daughters (ages 6 and 4) and talk with them daily about being homemakers, just as I talk with them daily about things of the Lord. I think being excited about homemaking and our roles and talking and sharing these things with our daughters DAILY is so important. (Just as important as being excited about the things of the Lord daily). My little girls already consider themselves homemakers. One time I asked them what they want to be when they grow up (just cause I was curious what they would say if someone else asked them) and both of my girls said they want to be mommies. And then I asked them.. and homemakers? And they said to me, no we are already homemakers. How precious is that! And how true it should be. Our little girls should already be homemakers (of course, not with the same load of work as mommies, but with the heart to help and create beauty in the home and to take care of things and to enjoy homemaking skills like cooking and handicrafts like sewing or embroidery or whatever skills a child finds fun to learn). When they grow up, they can be wives and mommies! Sometimes the wisdom of children =)

After salvation the next important thing in Christianity I believe is looking at our roles as male and female. All the Bible verses specifically for women are to address her role. Modern Christians somehow seem to ignore that mostly (that is why women have many roles in the church that they shouldn’t, why women are busy working jobs instead of busy being keepers of their home, etc.). The teaching of Biblical roles is completely neglected in most churches. Thank you Jennifer for taking the time to help on the teaching of Biblical roles! Sadly churches rarely teach it, but thankfully many wonderful Christian ladies on the internet do- so that we can still learn and be blessed with the proper teaching of what our roles should be as ladies and how we should be training our daughters!

Thank you too for the reminder that we were created for man and being helpmeets, which is sometimes forgotten and not focused on as much as titus 2 and homemaking.

Anne T. May 5, 2012

What has shocked me since becoming a Christian, homeschooling mom (6 yrs ago), is just how many Christian homeschooling families push their daughters towards a 4yr+ college education at brick-n-mortar schools far from home. While I agree that we must be open to the Lord’s will & calling for each of our children, and perhaps that may sometimes include a college education, I don’t believe that Christian young ladies should be “pushed” in that direction. Today, most young men and women can take college classes on-line, or go to a nearby technical school. Saddling our young with student loans for a college degree that, in a lot of cases, is no longer necessary, is wrong. Our young Christian women, especially, don’t need to go far from home for more “education.” They can learn much more by staying at home, serving in their church, learning home management skills, and helping their family.

Jennifer~Renewing Housewives May 5, 2012

Completely agree with you Anne!! What you are seeing happens so often, sadly.

Tami Lewis May 5, 2012

i love this , as usual!, and i agree- no where does GOD say singleness is a gift, PAUL does. He even says ” this doesn’t come from God” so why does everyone cling to this verse and ignore the verse that says it is blasphemy if a woman is not a keeper at home?

Sarah May 5, 2012

I hope and pray that, as you teach the younger women to be keepers at home, and to love God with all their heart, soul, mind and strength, that you accept the possibility that they may not marry- and that may be God’s design and plan for them!

Blessed Homemaking May 5, 2012

Oh, praise God, Jennifer for your faithfulness to speak this truth. I am often taken aback by this idealogy that pervades our Churches–that daughters just need to be Christians, and nothing else. It smears the Word of God and blasphemes it. We ARE to raise our daughters to be homemakers. That is what God has instructed us to do. I am so glad you are another voice speaking out about this important issue.

charity May 5, 2012

I am now a stay-at-home, homeschooling mother of boys and no daughters. However, my husband was disabled at one point so I had to be the bread winner. My husband has a surgery that God used to heal him. However, had I not been an educated woman our family would not have made it through those years. I think girls and boys should be taught how to run a household and women should stay home, but I also think that a woman should have some options in that area as well. We are teaching our sons that they have no business getting married unless they can provide for a family that way their wives can have more options. I believe that to go too far on either of the extremes of this issue is dangerous to all involved.

Anon May 7, 2012

Just out of curiosity, I commented using scripture and scripture only and my comment wasn’t even posted. This guest poster makes strong statements about singleness, and all I was trying to do by posting verses on singleness was to let God’s word speak for itself. Why are you censoring me when I was quoting His words, not mine? The Word does say that if you are single, you are not concerned with wordly things like when you are married, but rather things of the Lord. Scripture does encourage single people and widows to remain the way they are. Scripture does say that we are not married in Heaven. Why do you feel the need to censor God?

Harriet Palmer May 7, 2012

There is nothing more important than having a CHRISTIAN HOME containing a loving Mother and Father. Children, both boys and girls, need to learn how to be loving and supportive husbands, wives, parents and homemakers. A good example is a good teaching tool. What is that cliche? “Monkey see, Monkey do” God bless our families!

Melissa Miller May 7, 2012

I totally agree that our girls should be raised to be homemakers. I also believe that if we have children and are married, we do not have to wonder what our calling is. The bible makes it clear that our family is our calling, and I do mean on a full-time basis. I have stayed at home from the beginning and homeschool. My oldest is 7 and I am constantly searching for what is right in the eyes of the Lord when it comes to raising my littles.

I am not sure that I totally agree with you that it is not ok to let our girls gain experience in some sort of field. I do not think it wise to spend a ton of money on an expensive school far away, maybe a tech school, or community college. I have a degree in teaching that I earned while trying to have children of my own. That said, life is full of ups and downs, it is not perfect. Being a help meet can at times mean needing to bring money into the home. Especially during times of layoff, a husbands death, or just to make ends meet. While our ultimate goal is to raise homemakers, it is also important that our girls are able to help their family out if need be.

For most of us, having children in the home does not last forever. Some cannot have children and/or are only able to have a few. I know we only have three children and yet have been married and trying for 12 years. If I so choose I can teach part time once my children are grown and still have lots of time to spend with the grands. Also, when my husband got layed off a few years ago, I brought in an income for 6 months so that he was able to hold out for a new career and not just the first job that came along.

Tabi Jozwick May 8, 2012

Both my husband and I talked about this and we are starting our own home business (both of us are Tastefully Simple consultants) as well as homeschooling our future children. I am in the process of applying for a substitute teacher certification and earning my early childhood education certification to substitute teach to make ends meet until we can live on the business’s income alone

Bailey May 12, 2012

I think it’s refreshing when girls are raised to simply follow God’s lead. The very fact that God does call some to singleness shows that women were not primarily created for men, marriage or the home — women were created to reflect the image of God and were predestined, called and justified to bear His Gospel and glorify His name, however He sees fit. There is a ton of pressure on us girls to meet expectations — whether the conservative ones of marriage and motherhood or the mainstream ones of college and career. I know it firsthand.

Indeed, I see it as counterproductive to *not* embrace the so-called lie of raising girls to “only” be Christians. It’s already been pointed out that being a Christian and being a homemaker are certainly not mutually exclusive, that in fact many girls are called to being homemakers. But by raising girls to view homemaking as the sum of womanhood, it embraces a rigid idea on what a Christian woman is…which furthers the falsity that there’s only one way to do womanhood that’s worth anything. That is so demoralizing to us young women who are not called to home life now (or ever), who instead are called to go to college, work a job, go into the mission field. We’ve already been burned by the rigid view of feminism that we’re worth nothing unless we’ve got a steady paycheck and a B.A., and many, many women’s testimonies expose how that affected their future call as wives, mothers and homemakers. It’s also true that the homemakers-primarily philosophy can hurt the calling of young women who aren’t supposed to marry or be keepers at home. If Christians propagated the thoroughly Biblical, Gospel-centered truth that every calling of God is proper and righteous, whether a homemaker, college student or whatever, we could go about the business of glorifying God and fulfilling that calling instead of burdening our daughters with guilt.

There’s so much freedom in being raised “only” a Christian. I wouldn’t trade it for anything…and this from a girl who greatly values homemaking and would love to be a homemaker someday. I write for RH, after all. 🙂

Christobel December 20, 2012

Thank you for having a more balanced perspective. I enjoy reading the blogs of homemaking families and daughters for their beautiful devotional reflections and homemade crafting delights, but too often I end up feeling frustrated or guilty because “that’s not me”. I end up feeling like I ought to apologize for being an unmarried, childless, mid-twenties, university educated, fulltime worker. Would I have liked to be stay-at-home daughter? Maybe. But that opportunity was never open to me. I was not raised in a home where this was an option. I became a Christian because I went to university. For that reason alone, I would love to see more young Christian women and men coming into universities, that they may be missionaries to their peers. God used those young women raised in Christian home to walk alongside me and encourage my baby faith. Please don’t lay burdens on Christian womanhood that are too heavy a yoke for many of us to bear. Homemaker is a lovely, wonderful and blessed calling. But it is not the only calling for Christian women, and working Christian women are not inferior, less holy or less devout. God uses us all exactly where he has placed us.

Valerie May 12, 2012

I find it interesting that 1 Corinthians 11:9, Genesis 2:18, and Titus 2:5 are given as implied references of proof for the point being made in this post, and yet 1 Corinthians 7 – also very indisputably Scripture – is (by appearances) passed off as irrelevant.

I like addressing the passages that do come from letters or writings that encourage women to work at home – or the very first passage referencing women at all. But how dangerous, to do the very thing many adamant conservative home-keepers warn others not to do, in picking some passages to build a case, and dismissing others. It’s only when we take the Bible as a complete whole that we find the big picture and avoid building for ourselves a way of life God never intended. 🙂

Rose December 11, 2012

Can there be an option?
Does a woman HAVE to be a homemaker to be a good woman?
My boyfriend wants to be a stay at home dad. Fine by me. It just means he’s comfortable in his masculinity and that is very attractive.

What if your daughters wanted to be something other than homemakers? Then what?

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