Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Bringing Him Respect

Bible and Roses

I have been doing a fair amount of soul searching lately about my role and position as a wife and mother. During my quite times I have found that for the past few years I have always been keeping my home somewhat clean and taking care of my husband and son. But, I was always looking outward for that one thing that I could do from home that would "validate" me staying home or help make the "home" work less monotonous. I was never content in my home and being my husband's helper. I wanted more. And since I wanted more my work at home was only done half-heartedly. The attitude was "I'll get it done, but I may not like it." I am committed to staying home with my son because I believe it is the right thing to do, but I was bored with all the things that went with it.

The Lord has been working on me in that area quite a lot lately. My home is quickly becoming my haven and staying home during the day is becoming less and less of a burden. In this journey home I came upon this letter from Laine's Letters that really struck a cord with me. It is called Bringing Him Respect: Ephesians 5:33. Ephesians 5:33 says, "And let the wife see to it that she respect her husband." Just like Laine, I know that I respect my husband in most areas. I always make a point to do so. But, have I been respecting my husband in my homemaking?? Hmmmm.

I have known for awhile that there was something lacking in my motivation to clean and keep up the house. It was a chore that had to be done and it was a burden because it always got in the way of the other things I wanted to be doing. I was always desperately behind. Laine said she had "Homemaking debt" and that was due to years of "Time Banishment" instead of Time management. Yep! That was me.

After reading Laine's Letter I have come to realize how much of keeping up this lovely home is giving my husband respect. I am respecting him by giving him a relaxing haven to come home to. I am respecting him by making sure he has a cool drink when he walks in the door and a warm dinner on the table. I bring him respect by making sure his clothes drawers are always full and his clothes are hanging nicely in the closet. I bring him respect by keeping his son safe and cared for during the day. I bring him respect by being careful with the budget and not overspending his hard-earned money. The biggest one for me, though, is that I bring him respect when he knows that I am not squandering my time away everyday, "time banishment," when he is working extra hard so that I can have the blessing of staying home.

I confess I have a "homemaking debt" that is not very pretty. I feel like I can't even see over the top of it. But, I have a brand new perspective on my home and what I am doing when I keep it properly. I am "Bringing Him Respect." So, Honey (I know you are reading this), from now on I am not going to banish my time, I am going to manage it. This is a HUGE project but with the Lord's help it can be done.

I will close with a quote from Bringing Him Respect: Ephesians 5:33:

I keep thinking of the verse in Proverbs 31 where her husband sits at the gate in the middle of all her work.

"Her husband is known in the gates, when he sits among the elders of the land." Proverbs 31:23

Her work brings him respect in the gates among the people. The verse which always seemed so very out of place to me, now makes perfect sense. It is a beautiful picture of the laying down of one's life that the other might shine. She is shown working in the home throughout the passage; he is shown shining in the gates. She brings him respect.

That is how the Word of God works. It opens one's mind to understand that there is more than housework going on here. There is respect going on here. Not only that. There is also glory to God going on here. Oh, the joy, the incredible joy of bringing "Him" and him respect in our homes. And then seeing that respect result in the "washing of another's feet," or otherwise more well known as, "practicing hospitality." May He do it through us. May He do it through us!

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