War on Women: What’s a Woman to Do?

February 3, 2014

by Hariette Petersen
(Hariette blogs, HERE.)

(comments pre-moderated)

Well, now, that depends entirely upon the woman, doesn’t it? A week ago, a misguided lady wrote a blog-post that sounded like a throwback from the late ’60s. She spewed the kind of blather Phil Donahue hailed in his hey-day. Her thoughts created a bit of a stir on Fox News segments for a couple of days. My daughter came over and asked if I’d seen the scourging the blogger delivered on stay-at-home-moms and if I’d read what Matt Walsh had countered on his blog. Matt dismissed it as rather goofy rhetoric designed to increase ad hits for her blog. 

I read the post in question, and thought it pure silliness to blame happily unemployed moms for other women’s inability to earn wages equal to men. Her bullying tone and disdain was palatable. My decaf coffee tasted bitter as I read. What kind of child-life did she have? Who encouraged her kind of thinking? Teachers? A mother? Grandmothers? Aunts? Where are the older women in this lady’s life?

Who is mentoring her and feeding her such tripe?

I’m set to unleash a few barbs when it hits me. I drank that Kool-Aid at one point in my life. She’s living in a world where every wind of doctrine is chased. A world suffocating in self-saturated indulgence. These ideas rule her. Homemaking and child rearing are clearly not her cup-to-sup, and she doesn’t like women who drink from that well of opportunity. In fact, when I surfed back and read her post again, barbs poked my own heart. I felt sorry for her.

I need to step up my calling.

My calling?

Yes, calling. God calls women to rise up and step forward to mentor younger women, to encourage the like-minded. God has called us to teach women sound values and biblical principles. It’s our responsibility to model every word instructive word in the Bible, including these:

“…you must say the things that are consistent with sound teaching. Older men are to be level headed, worthy of respect, sensible, and sound in faith, love and endurance. In the same way, older women are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not addicted to much wine. They are to teach what is good, so they may encourage the young women to love their husbands and to love their children, to be self-controlled, pure, homemakers, kind, and submissive to their husbands, so that God’s message will not be slandered” Titus 2:1-5 HCS.

Something is terribly wrong in our society. How is one young woman’s demeaning opinion more laudable than another woman who willingly submits her life to a husband as unto the Lord for the rest of her life and chooses to raise godly children? I’ve seen the carnage of such accusations. It’s troubling that society finds ultimate satisfaction in promoting careers as the number one priority for women. 

Women are much more than a vocation. Deceit colors our world. We’re manipulated by the temporal reward of houses, money, position and status. Some women are content in their own skin and godly choices. They need our support. We are not the sum of one person’s estimation of us. We are more than some stranger’s assessment of our choices. No one person determines God’s plan for another. We are made in the image of God. We are bought by the blood of the Lamb. We are filled by the Holy Spirit and have a purpose ordained by the Great I Am.

Every nose we wipe, every knee we bandage, every fever we tend, every correction we make, every discipline we enforce, every Scripture we utter, every irritation we temper, every heartache we soothe, every rebellion we admonish, every joy we share, every prayer we pray – all these reflect God’s mercy and grace. Each act deflects the fiery darts and sends them right back to the pit of hell. When we invest our lives in the hearts, souls and spirits of our children, we store treasures above. 

Every kindness you show, every sacrifice you make in the name of Christ, is a battle won in the unholy, defeated, Satan-ruled war on women.

We, as sisters in the Lord, are given a calling that supersedes all others in this temporal world. I do not discard the work or efforts of Christian women who work outside the home, either. For “whatsoever we do or say,” when said and done with integrity, diligence and loyalty — the Lord blesses and rewards. When we encourage mothers and young wives in their commitments, we help build the kingdom. When motives and intentions are surrendered unto the Lord, the world will mock us. The world will ridicule us, and that’s okay. 

When you follow the living Word of God and are submissive to your husbands as unto the LORD, God honors every effort, and blesses beyond measure. When you “seek first the kingdom of God,” the earth’s lure and approval of society fades away. 

So, what is a woman to do?

“Do not let kindness and truth leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart … so you will find favor and good repute in the sight of God and man … trust in the LORD with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding … In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight. Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD and turn away from evil. It will be healing to your body and refreshment to your bones” Proverbs 3:3-8 HCS.

It’s up to us, ladies. Women are struggling. Society is doing its utmost to smother our voices and tear down our sisters, our daughters and granddaughters who seek to train up children to honor God. Mentor on. We are not alone. We have each other. We have Jesus. Who can really be against us?

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Hariette has some additional thoughts on her essay above. To read them, click HERE.

(All comments are initially moderated and checked for propriety, relevance and general content.)

 

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Karen Scott

So true! I am so thankful that our daughter-in-law stayed home with her children while they were small, and didn’t succumb to the pressures of society. I guess one of my biggest regrets is that I “drank the Kool-aid” and worked outside the home, and in doing so missed out on a lot of opportunities of just spending time with our boys without “hurrying to be somewhere” because of time constraints. The material things that we felt were so important and necessary for their lives were definitely not.

hariette petersen

Good Morning, Karen…
Bless you, sister. One of my greatest joys right now is watching my daughter’s two younger girls being home-schooled. I am so very proud of her for this amazing discipline. We all learn lessons of “Kool-aid” indulgence in one way or another, I suppose. Don’t know when I’ve felt as called as I am now regarding women encouraging women. Praying for you and yours…please pray for me and mine. hariette

Lydia

Harriet, While I lean more toward mutual submission as the true interpretation I want to say this “war on women” is so full of cognitive dissonance I can hardly believe it is happening after all these years. One of my favorite insults are the women who make fun of sahm’s who are educated. They cannot understand why one would have a masters degree to raise kids. What a horrible thought! An educated mom. :o)

But lets be real. I know many of these sahm who are very educated and I know many educated women who are not sahm but would like to be. Some of it is pride. So I ask, what business is it of anyone’s? We are not in people’s homes and know what the situation might be. Over the last 20 years in my career I met many women who worked solely for health insurance reasons. Without that huge cost, they would have gladly stayed home. I project that will get worse now that we are embracing government mandates. In fact, if resourced stats of who is graduating from college, entering professions, etc, are any indicator we are going to see more women in the workforce than men. Some women have a career they love and it actually makes them better moms. My mom was a church musician and had a small business and was particularly domesticated. I was with her all the time and learned a lot. I would not trade that childhood experience for anything.

My best friend is a sahm with one child who is severely handicapped and I praise God for her. She often picks up my kids from school when I am running late from an appointment and I in turn run errands for her.

Let us strive to support one another, encourage one another no matter what our status.

BTW: The “war on women” was most pronounced in the Clinton White House when he took advantage of his position with a young intern. And his wife “supported” him in the lies. A lot of women fought on the wrong side of that war. When women are objectified, that is the real war.

    hariette petersen

    Hi, Lydia… long time between exchanges. Hope you are well.

    “Cognitive Dissonance”??? gee, Lydia… softball, here, will ya? I’m no psychology major. I had to go look that one up to refresh my memory. Need to tell ya, some ladies have a hard time experiencing the excessive mental stress and discomfort of some other individual who chooses their own way in life, only to be badgered and blamed because they don’t fall in line. You are spot on when it comes to how women battle over contradictory beliefs. To me, it’s even simpler. It all comes down to one word: bullying. One side gets so opinionated they cannot let the other view be who they are. It’s judgmental and sinful for us to plunk ourselves on either side of the window pane and throw stones all day long at moving shadows.

    (On the submission issue… that’s for a whole other post. Watch for it. not on my top ten list of things to write about at the moment. Scripture is pretty clear and I won’t climb down from the imaginary fence till we wiggle on down the road a bit.) :)

    You seemed blessed with a fantastic childhood. What a mom! That’s what I’m talking about.

    I could go on and on about this or that person, but what I clumsily sought to express with my post a is the scriptural calling of we women to mentor and teach the younger women to live according to God’s word. To encourage them to honor Him, and model principles in keeping with the entire Bible. That is not at odds in my mind. Any issue I have with the “Amy” who dissed StayAtHomeMoms, has nothing to do with her choosing a career. That’s her choice. The issue is to quell her badgering and bullying and putting down women who choose another lifeview. My purpose for writing this is to hopefully help we women to look beyond the choices women make in this area and be support systems who teach younger women Christian values and undergird them as you and your friend do.

    The war on women has nothing to do with Clinton, Obama or Beanie-boos. They are using it to divide us as a nation. The “real” war on women has to do with Satan who wants to destroy families, annihilate relationships and keep Christians at one another’s throats so that we are ineffective in the kingdom of God. We battle not against flesh and blood, but the evil powers of darkness. This is a matter of prayer for each of us and I find myself more convicted than ever of my role in Christ. My confidence is in Him and my solace is in people like you who have gone to the mat for the molested children and the abused in life. Thanks for commenting. Pray for me and I will you. hariette

volfan007

Hariette,

Great article. Really, really good. My wife stayed home with our 3 children, until they were old enough to go to school. if you asked her, today, does she regret it, she’d tell you that she would stay home with them, again, in a heart beat. She loved every minute of being a wife and a Mom. And, our children and I were blessed by her devotion and love and care. Thanks for speaking out on this issue.

God bless you, Sister,

David Worley

hariette petersen

Hi David, thanks.
while I find stay at home moms a blessing to children– I find the fact that women who stay home can be there for not only their own children but for other women who need encouragement in the LORD. I know Sherry has been this example for other ladies in your church. No doubt she has under-girded and taught several young women by word, prayer and example. May she continue to be the mentor among women we so desperately need in this age of discord and battles being waged on our self-worth and value to each other and the kingdom of God. hariette

Max

A great article, Hariette, because you speak great truth! When a desire for more stuff supersedes parental responsibilities (by either mother or father), it’s the stuff of wrong stuff in Christian behavior. When our family started coming along, my wife and I chose for her to exit the workforce. Some viewed our living from payday to payday in those early years as a poor choice – but we saw our “sacrifice” of physical things fade in the distance as we enjoyed spiritual blessings of operating in obedience to the faith we said we professed. We’ve never regretted that decision. I often tell my wife that she is the most godly man I know! ;^)

Your challenge for mature women of faith to step forward and mentor younger women is a noble, but not novel concept … it’s been a Biblical mandate for 2,000+ years, but seldom exercised. If there was ever a time for 50+ year old Southern Baptist women (and men) to step forward, it is now!! In the absence of such discipleship, the void is being filled by popular movements sweeping through our churches which are drawing our youth into aberrant belief and practice. I am praying that God will expand your ministry to encourage and equip older saints to do the work of the ministry in this regard.

    hariette petersen

    Max,
    praying for women of all ages to step forward and follow this 2,000 year-old charge. Can’t even begin to imagine what our world could have been had it been faithfully executed all these years, can you? I am not disheartened in this quest. I know many many women who are mentoring others, assisting and under-girding. I know many moms who are encouraging other ladies and younger women. Am praying for more to find their voice.
    Thanks for logging on, Max. Thanks for prayers… I sure need them…need more wisdom.. May God continue to pour out his blessing on you and yours, also. hariette

      Max

      “… all ages to step forward … mentoring others, assisting and under-girding …”

      Amen and amen! It is high time!

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