Posted by: Kristi at Courageous Homekeeping
If you are just joining in to this series, you must, must first read Part 1. So go read it and then come back!
If we believe then, in what God says about our original roles as women, the second question is this; Does that then mean that if a woman is working outside of the home that she is sinning because it is going against God’s original intention? The answer to this, I believe (don’t hate me!) is maybe. The answer to this question I think has to be on a case by case basis…and it’s not a matter of working or not working, like I said in the last post, it’s a matter of the heart.
Before I jump into what I’m going to say in the rest of this post, I’d like to be clear about something. I’m not writing this post in ANY way to be judgemental. I do not have the ability or the desire to judge you, your decisions, or your heart. MY heart in writing these posts is that I desperately want women to really, really understand what they are doing and WHY. I want you to understand what God says about who you are as a person and as a woman. There is NOTHING more important than understanding what God says about who we are and how He views us. And we have been walking around for years, blinded to the Truth of this issue. As a result, marriages are falling apart. Families are falling apart. The church is falling apart. Society is falling apart. We’ve got to KNOW what God says about this! So, I would just ask you to pray before you continue this, that God would open your eyes and help you to see the truth. God’s truth as well as the truth of your own hearts. Okay…here we go.
When women go outside of their house to find a paying job, (this could also be a broader definition…we could put school in there or volunteering…anything that takes our focus off of our main priority of our families) I think we do it for one or more of these main reasons:
#1- We’ve talked to God, thought about and decided that getting a job would be the very best thing that we can do for our families AND our husbands. Remember, our main goal is to bring our husbands good. This could be a situation of, your husband is going to school in order to be able to support the family in the best way he can…and so you go to work to “help” him during this time…that’s one example of how it might be something that is bringing him good. Also, of course, there are examples of a woman having to work because her husband has sinned and abandoned her and left her with no other option. So, of course it’s not sinful in these circumstances.
#2- I believe that sometimes, women want to get a job because they are seeking value. Worth. Identity. Purpose. They are feeling bored at home, unfulfilled, restless…And the world tells them that whatever they are seeking is “out there”. Go find yourself. Be whatever you want to be. Climb every mountain, ford every stream. But the truth…the TRUTH is that we can ONLY find our value, our worth, our identity, and our purpose by looking at Jesus. What does Jesus say that we should do? What are our roles? What is our purpose? We will never, never, never be fulfilled until and unless we are using our God-given gifts and talents to fulfill the purpose, calling and ministry that GOD has given us. First and foremost, I believe, within our own homes. Has God given you gifts, skills, talents, abilities? Yeah, me too! And my job, is to figure out how to best use those gifts, while serving under the authority of God, and my husband….IN MY HOME to bless my family.
#3- For whatever reason their husband isn’t supporting the family…either not at all or not enough, and so we step in to cover where he is lacking. Now on the surface, that might sound like a “good” and “helpful” thing for us to do. But is it? Really? If we believe that our husbands are meant to be the sole providers for our family (we didn’t really get into this too much, but in 1 Timothy 5:8 it says that if a man does not provide for the needs of his relatives, especially his immediate family he is denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever…that’s kind of hard to argue with.) So, if we really believe this, do you think that running out to get a job to help make ends meet when your husband is not doing this is doing him “good”?
In some situations, the answer might be yes…but again, it comes back to the heart. The problem is, that we know that part of our curse is that we want to control everything. Amen? (I am a first born…I am bossy, controlling and have great leadership abilities…so I get this control thing, believe me!) But I would suggest to you that when we go to work, sometimes we are not allowing our husbands to bear the full burden that God placed on their shoulders. When we wiggle in there, and start helping to support the family, sometimes we are doing that in order to control the situation, and/or we are not allowing our husbands the freedom and ability to step into that role of sole provider for our families….and if we take that away from him, then I would argue that we are not doing him “good”. Providing for their families is one of the great God-given responsibilities of men. They feel it. When they are able to provide for their families, it gives them a great sense of fulfillment…don’t take that away from them because you feel like you need to control or take over the situation. Remember- our first priority is to LOVE our husbands and bring them good. And I would say that the best “good” we can bring them is to ALLOW them to feel the burden of providing for their family. Burdens are not always bad. I believe that God places burdens on our hearts to spur us into action where He wants us to work.
The book “Passionate Housewives Desperate for God” by Jennie Chancey and Stacy McDonald has something to say about this:
“We don’t want to mold our husbands into the image of impotent androgyny; we want to encourage them to grow into the image of Christ, our Heavenly Bridegroom and King. The choice is ours. We can become the wise, capable helpers God created us to be, or we can tear down our homes with our own hands in a vain quest to “equal” men. God called femininity “very good” when He created Eve different from Adam; let us rejoice in that role and pour ourselves into servant-hearted submission to Christ as we bless our husbands.
Do you want to see your husband succeed and prosper? Do everything you can to build him up in his God-given role. Don’t create extra burdens for him to bear; ease his burdens by capably undertaking your own role in the home.”
Okay…I’m just going to have to stop there. But there’s so much more I want to talk about and explore together…so stay tuned for Part 3!