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Saturday, December 15, 2007

Examination of the Good Wife

I intend to examine the 1955 article, "The Good Wife's Guide." I will probably start on Monday. First, though, I want to knock out a few expectations, and then establish some:

1) I am speaking from the position of failure. I can tell from experience what does not work. However, whether I fail or succeed, I find out what works and what is right from God's revealed word: The Bible.

2) Since I have always drifted along on the waves of feminism, without really staking a claim on it, I am not an expert, and I welcome any one's comments or expertise. I have not studied it or fought for or against it. I have seen some of the devastating effects on women and culture, but I am not positive that they are the direct result of feminism, or if they are the result of other influences in our society. I do think that they are very closely tied to it, though.

3) Since I am, relative to my age, a novice on Biblical womanhood, I am not an expert, and I welcome any one's comments or expertise.

4) I am going to take the points out of order. I will start with "A good wife always knows her place." It is a highly volatile statement, and, I think, highly misunderstood. It is a good place to start, and it will serve to lay the foundation for the remaining points.

5) After that, I may group some things together, because they are points of advice that represent a principle; like examples of or exceptions to a rule.

I am pleased to already have a discussion going on this subject. Please feel absolutely free to discuss, rebuke, refute, or debate. I hope that everyone will be respectful. I have lived on both sides now. I, and my Saviour will love you.

I will stand on nothing but Scripture. All other ground is sinking sand.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

A wife of noble character who can find?

I have recently, again, received the above graphic forwarded to me by email. (click on the picture for easier reading)

In the following weeks, I will commit to examining each point from the biblical perspective.

Make no mistake, I was raised in a feminist America. Feminism is the air we breathe. It is very much like trying to think like a tree to see things in another way. However, just because I am a woman of unclean lips, and everyone around me also has unclean lips, doesn't make unclean lips alright. This is not like wearing a kilt in Iowa, or jeans in the Buckingham Palace. These are things that have far-reaching, and commonly denied effects.

The funny thing is how simple little steps to make the home a pleasant place to gather have become, not only a lost art, but a laughing stock. The main reason is that we are a culture that teaches us to live for ourselves, for the most part. Even philanthropy is based on what's in it for me (WIFM) with tax breaks and incentives.

Some of the suggestions in this 1955 advice can simply be tossed, but we should not have thrown out the baby with the bath water. Reading these, makes my natural self, cry out, "Why?" or "But what about me?"

Mere nostalgia is not a hill I will die on, but this is really more than nostalgia. There are lessons to be learned from what we learned in '60s and '70s. "You've come a long way, baby!" Can we even see where it has gotten us? Women do not hold the place of honor that we used to. We have given up sacrificing ourselves for our children in order to grow old alone. We have given up serving our husbands, in order to raise our children without the strength of the father.

We have become all we need, to become all we have.

We have come a long way, baby!

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Kindling Polycarp Incandescence

I first posted this in January of 2006. I had snatched it, though, from From the BaylyBlog. I just love this story; everything about it. I think of it often as I burn. It is an example of one setting himself on fire for Jesus:

...where will you take tidings of comfort and joy this (year)?

Christmas, 1988, N Train

A young woman we know writes: It was the gilt-edged pages that gave him away. Most people who read the Bible on the subway have a small pocket edition and keep it to themselves. This young man looked as if he had come away with the family King James. Otherwise, he was ordinary-looking; gray jacket, plaid scarf, blue jeans, white sneakers, bristly brown hair; a gold wedding band. He waited until the N train had pulled out of the Queensboro Plaza station and was under the East River, and then he read aloud, "In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus…" A groan went out from my fellow-passengers.

Talk about a captive audience. The train was too crowded for people to switch cars. And New Yorkers will put up with all sorts of things rather than give up their seats on the subway. I couldn’t help thinking that the young man was lucky there were no maniacs aboard and no piles of stones at hand. But no matter how you feel about being force-fed the gospel under the East River it holds up better than the Times or the Post or the subway ads for Dr. Zizmor, dermatologist. Anyway, no one moved. No one said, "Oh, shut up." No one wanted to be identified as an irreligious loner at Christmastime.

I found myself criticizing the young man’s intonation. He had a good strong voice, but the words rocked up and back unvaryingly: "…to be enrolled with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child." When he was done, and the shepherds had rejoiced, he changed--thank goodness--his rhythm. He started singing "Joy to the World." He sang two full verses of it, again in a good, strong voice. But no one joined in. I was tempted, partly because I felt sorry for him--singing in the face of so much hostility--and also because I’m a sucker for actual human voices raised in song, as opposed to canned carols such as one hears in Doubleday (pa-rum-pa-pum-pum) and in Barnes & Noble (gloh-o-o-o-o-oh-o-o-o-o-oh-o-o-o-o-oh-ria). But I was sitting next to a man rigid with pain and fury at having his subway meditations interrupted, and I felt sorry for him, too. Especially when the young man finished singing and began to preach, reminding us that we were all God’s creatures on the N train and that for each of us He had a plan. God’s creature next to me was probably thinking that he didn’t take the subway to fall in with God’s plan--he took the subway to get to Fifty-ninth and Lexington.

(“The Talk of the Town” in The New Yorker, Dec. 26, 1988.)