Would you like to listen to one of the 2018 sessions again? We are pleased to be able to make them all available through the website now. Enjoy!
Jaquelle Crowe – This Changes Everything: How the Gospel Transforms the Teen Years
Holly Myers – Things God Has Taught Me Through Salvation & Motherhood
Shannon Elson – Changing Your Life With the Proper Addiction
Jaquelle Crow – Proper View of Our Youth in the Church
Lois Dorey – Keeper of the Home: Things My Mother Taught Me (Not recorded – see transcript below!)
Holly Myers – Pondering the Path of Your Feet: Biblical Parenting in All Stages
Lois Dorey – Keeper of My Heart: How God Transformed My Home
Charmin Meadows – Our Favourite Things & Prize Giveaways
Nikki Hiltz – Amazing Testimony Part 2
Shannon Elson – The Hard Days and Years: A Biblical Plan for When Life Isn’t Pretty
Holly Myers – Encouragement for Godly Womanhood
We hope these recordings made available to you continue to be an encouragement as you strive toward all God wants you to be this year!
Lois Dorey Keeper of the Home Transcript
I belong to the generation of the Baby Boomers – born between 1946 & 1964. I was born in 1948. This past week I celebrated my 70th birthday. The 1950‘s were my formative childhood years.
It has been said that the 1950’s was the last age of innocence.
*A conservative culture.
*In the 1950’s families dined together
*Went together for outings
*Met and chatted with their neighbours regularly
*discipline with respect to children was a major concern within families
*kids were made to attend Sunday School
*disrespect of elders was out of the question and dealt with severely
*no long hours watching TV
*computers not entered the common household
An article in the Washington Post says in the 1950’s, 65% of all children under 15 were being raised in traditional breadwinner-homemaker families. The iconic 1950’s family of the breadwinner father going off to work, and caregiving mother taking care of the homefront has been described by economists as the most efficient family structure.
It doesn’t take much research to learn that the last century has seen a great transformation of marriage and family. And it’s not a good one! If you watch the news at all or are aware of the culture around us in Canada you know that socially our country is in a mess! Schools are in a mess. Homes, families and kids are in a mess. There were messes in the 1950’s, too. There is nothing new under the sun. But today in liberal and progressing 2018 we are being hit with a tsunami of social and family crises. What has happened? Just 50 years ago homes & families (both Christian and non-Christian) generally were built on biblical principles. Today those principles are considered archaic and scoffed at. We live in a post Christian society – little or no knowledge of the Bible. Even many Christian men and women are not tuned in to biblical truths and principles to run their homes and families. We are very subtly being brainwashed by our society to accept their views of home and family standards and expectations. Many Christians are OK with going to church on Sunday and then let their Bibles gather dust all week. We don’t realize that we are losing our spiritual insight. When we look around us and see the direction our society is heading, it seems that God is not calling the shots anymore. As someone once said “the lunatics are running the asylum”. Is it not obvious to intelligent people that we have lost something good that worked???
This morning I am going to talk to you about something archaic that worked. I am going to tell you a bit of one woman’s journey at home and one particular verse, a particular part of this verse in the New Testament book of Titus. It is a familiar verse to many of you in Titus 2, talking about Christian women – what the aged women are to teach the young women. It is plain in scripture that God wants ALL women, old & young, to be these things:
vs.4 & 5 – … to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed. “Keepers at home”, can sum up everything in that verse.
As I was looking through a little book of the local history of my home town in New Brunswick I turned a page and there it was, an old picture taken in the late 1930’s. (My older sister who is in heaven today was just a baby then. It was before my brother or I was born.) It wasn’t the first time I had seen that old picture but this time I noticed something in it that I had missed before. And I sat down and wrote a poem about it…
I saw a faded photograph
Yellowed and worn with time
A wharf, old trucks, a sailing ship
Pulp bales piled high in line.
It captured well, the life and times
Of men in days gone by
But something just beyond the scene
Caught quick my knowing eye.
Beyond the dock, beyond the bay
Beyond the tidal foam
Across the span of 80 years
I saw the fields of home.
The trees that lined the hill were young
In that familiar place
I longed to slip beyond those boughs
And see my mother’s face.
But that, of course, can never be
Such treasured things are gone
Found only in old photographs
That take me almost home.
The memories of my childhood home are good ones. And the credit goes to my mother!
I’m going to tell you something that may shock some of you living in these days of shallow casual relationships, these days when personal significance is idolized’, theses days when ‘love you, love you’ rolls off the lips of husbands and wives, moms and dads and kids in vain repetition day after day, phone call after phone call . My mother was 79 years old when she died. I was 43. In all of my 43 years I don’t remember my mother ever saying “I love you”! And I am not scarred. My psychi has not been damaged and I KNOW my mother loved me. How do I know that, when I don’t remember her ever speaking those words? My mother was a keeper at home. Notice I did not say ‘a stay at home mom’. There is a difference. I have known many women who were stay at home women but were not keepers of their home.
My mother showed she loved us in many ways that I didn’t recognize as love – sacrificial love, until I was grown up. I realize now (because I have been there) that it was not easy for my mother to say “I love you” by being a keeper at home. It would have been much easier to say ‘love you’ and go her merry way.
What are some of the ways my mother said “I love you”.
Proverbs 31: 11,12 The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil. She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.
Unlike many, many women today in North America, my Mother did not have princess syndrome. In our home DAD was to be honored and respected. Mom taught us by word & example that DAD was the King of our Castle. How did she do that? Our home was not run by a ‘me’ centered woman or a ‘child centered’ Mom like so many of our homes today. Our home was a Dad centered home. Dad was important. Dad came first. She taught us that in very simple ways –
Simple Example – We didn’t eat until Dad got home and we all ate together. Dad was always the one who was first served at the table.Example – When dad was resting in the living room we were told to be quiet until he got up. And we were!
Example – When Dad came home from work he sat down. He didn’t take over home chores. He wasn’t expected to. And no one thought the worse of him for it. He was not the keeper at home. He was the provider and he went to work every day at the garage/service station so he could provide. There were times when he did help at home when necessary but not because Mom wasn’t doing her job through the day. It wasn’t the norm.
Example – We never heard my mother complain to or about, bad-mouth, make fun of, or demean her husband/my father in any way. I don’t remember ever hearing harsh or angry words between my mom and dad. Do you know how hard it is to hold your tongue? It wasn’t easy for Mom either! But she did. “A soft answer turns away wrath”. They were normal – I’m sure there were disagreements between them but they were settled in private. We kids never saw or heard it. We were secure in our parent’s relationship. My Mom said “I love you” by honouring and respecting my Dad.
She riseth also while it is yet night, and giveth meat to her household, and a portion to her maidens …
When I was a child, it was a rare thing to be up in the morning before my mother. She was up, dressed for the day, table set for breakfast and preparing our food when we came downstairs. My dad didn’t go to work in themorning that he wasn’t sent off with a good breakfast, a cup of coffee and a good-bye from my Mom. My mom day after day, week after week, month after month, year after year – breakfast, lunch, supper; breakfast, lunch, supper. Always – table set, food prepared, everyone at the table at the same time! Clean-up, clean-up, clean-up. The sameness of life at home can often be a struggle for a woman who stays at home. We don’t see the impact that being faithful in these simple tasks will have on others in years to come. We see discouragement & frustration & boredom sometimes as we look well to the mundane ways of our household! It is nothing new. My mother experienced it, I have experienced it and I’m sure many of you have, too. We can’t help how we feel. We can help how we act.
Proverbs. 31:27 She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness.
My mom was not lazy and she made her home her priority. I didn’t realize it then but, as I look back, we did not have a nice looking house. This picture was taken in the 1950’S It looked the same in pictures from the 1930’s and it looked the same when I had my picture taken on the front step in the late 1990’s just before it was torn down! Unpainted clapboards on the outside. Crooked floors on the inside covered with worn linoleum. Well worn sofa and chairs recovered many times over the years by my mom and her treddle singer sewing machine. Some things she couldn’t change but she could make a difference in other ways.
A pretty table cloth, some lace curtains in the window, family pictures and special things on the mantle, pretty dishes on the table, her own homemade quilts on the beds. Making sure the house was reasonably clean and reasonably tidy (especially around the time when Dad was to come home from work) – not perfect, but comfortable. (I remember the first time Rod visited my childhood home with me. He was quite surprised! It was nothing like he had imagined from the way I had talked about it. I guess growing up I had noticed the pretty tablecloths, not the crooked floors. Cooking, cleaning, washing, ironing, mending, mothering, daily, over and over – it’s true, a woman’s work is never done! Do you think my Mom ever got tired of it? Of course! I am thankful she kept pressing on in spite of the days when she probably felt like quitting. She was of the generation that didn’t quit when the going got tough and she didn’t complain. Is ‘biblical’ homemaking a worthy occupation? Our culture would say no. The princess syndrome says you deserve more. God says it IS a worthy occupation. Embrace it! It is tough but much reward comes with it – now and in time to come.
Titus 2:4 … to love their children
How do you love your children?
How did Mom love her children? – Training & Discipline & Good Times
Training in what. Since many of you are home-schooling Moms, I will qualify – not training in academics. I went to public school. My Mom trained me (or attempted to) in life skills. She taught me things like how to set the table properly, how to eat properly, how to make my bed and keep my room tidy, good manners at home and abroad, respect for other peoples property (eg. respect starts at home – we were not allowed to climb on, jump on or in any other way abuse our well worn furniture at home and therefore we didn’t consider doing that at someone else’s house either! My mom told me that Grammie Justason said we were the only kids that came to visit that didn’t run rampant through the house, upstairs and down, and get into things). For a mom to train, she must be present and engaged and consistent. Recently I saw a young friend’s Instagram post – “Resolve to spend less time casually chatting online and more time engaging with those living under your roof”.
Excellent encouraging advice. Hard to do for we women with iPads, iPhones, facebook, and instagram! *** Again, hard choices for the modern culturally aware woman. Connect with the world and friends and other interests or connect with our family. It is always a choice and often means a sacrifice on our part.
Discipline. I never got a punishment I didn’t deserve! My mom was not unfair. She did not have a harsh or angry spirit. But she meant business! We didn’t get a lot of spankings that I remember (spankings were reserved for the more serious crimes) but she saw & dealt with bad behavior or attitudes or talking back immediately and consistently. To do that she had to be connected and paying attention to us! Also, when we were told to do something or not to do something, she didn’t turn around and forget about it, she took the time to stop and make sure we did what she had said. If we needed help or encouragement or a reminder to obey she gave it.
Obedience was expected. Or else! What has discipline got to do with love?
Here is one example from scripture – (Prov. 13:24) He that spareth his rod hateth his son; but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes. Scripture has lots to say about disciplining/training/encouraging your children. You must read your Bible – search the scriptures – to learn it!
Loving your family also includes having fun. Often it is an enjoyable time for all. Sometimes it is not. Sometimes it is a sacrifice on a home makers part. I remember sometimes playing a board game with Mom when I know now looking back there were other things she either needed to do or wanted to do. I remember her playing cribbage and eating ice-cream with my dad many an evening and them teaching us how to play. There were nights that my mom sat beside my bed reading chapter books, like Anne of Green Gables to help me go to sleep. She was tired after a busy day at home but she did it anyway. There was the odd afternoon at the beach. We kids loved those afternoons. My mom probably not so much – she was not a swimmer so she sat on a blanket on the sand appearing to enjoy watching us or wading knee deep in the water to cool off in the hot sun After my dad bought a cabin on Lake Utopia, my Mom worked hard on Friday nights and Saturday mornings packing up food, bedding, clothes, etc. to head to the lake to spend the week-ends at our camp and then pack it al up to come home again. . It was a lot of work for Mom. She didn’t complain. It was a lot of fun for the entire family. My brother and I have great memories of those summers at the Sleepy Lodge. Just last month Charmin and Shannon had the opportunity to sail up Lake Utopia with my brother and I to visit the place where our family spent our summer week-ends. The log cabin was no more and in it’s place was a thrown together uninteresting one room cabin. Our Sleepy Lodge was gone but our good family memories remained intact .
I remember visits with cousins. I remember clam bakes and picnics at the seashore. Shopping trips to St. John or Calais, Maine. I remember fun visits to my grandmother’s farm on an afternoon when I know Mom would have preferred to have gone there alone for a visit with her Mom. My mom loved us and she was a keeper of home and family. There were times when she chose to sacrifice.
So these are some of the ways my mom had said “I love you” to her family and that made my heart stir when I saw the picture in that book and realized that the day that old picture was taken, just over that hill in the background was home and my mother. A precious thought!
Think about it, ladies. Are you into real biblical homemaking? Or do you just read about it sometimes in your Bible. Or are you buying into the cheap counterfit that social media and our current culture is promoting? Will the thought of you and your home stir someone’s heart someday with pleasant homemade memories? Does your conduct and your attitude and the way you talk in your home say “I love me” or does it say “I love you” to your husband, to your children, to people who visit under your roof? Are you attempting to make things “beautiful” for the people in your life?
That’s what a Titus 2 keeper at home does. That’s what my mom did. My mother went the extra mile for her family.
Several years ago, I wrote these lines thinking about home & Mom:
It wasn’t the glow from the windows bright
On nights that were stormy and dark
It wasn’t the warmth from the old coal stove Or those dream things we never did start;
It wasn’t the smell of just baked bread
Or the donuts fresh from the fat
It wasn’t the sharp snap of clothes on the line
Or the soft throaty purr of the cat;
It wasn’t the socks that ere mended so neat
Or the roast chicken fit for a king
It wasn’t the waiting for Christmas to come
And thoughts of what Santa might bring
It wasn’t the stories so faithfully read
Or the clam bakes down by the shore
It wasn’t warm quilts piled high on our beds
Or tasty treats from the store.
It wasn’t the long lazy days of June
Or the whisper of wind through the screen
It wasn’t the time spent playing our games
Or burning the fields in the Spring
So, why is it today those memories are sweet
Though through years and long miles we have roamed?
It’s because God gave us a wonderful Mom
And that’s why our house was a home.
Here is the last picture I snapped of my Mom and Dad. It is the last one ever taken of them. By the time this picture was taken, Mom had suffered several mini strokes that had left her with limited mobility. My Dad cared for her at home, patiently and lovingly looking after her every need. It was his time to sacrifice and he did. They were married 55 years.
I end with this tribute to my Mom – Not because I think she was perfect – she would tell you herself she failed in many ways. But because she had a servant’s heart, her home and family reaped many benefits. We all were blessed. That’s why today …
“Her children arise up and call her blessed: her husband also, and he praiseth her.
Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all.
Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the LORD, she shall be praised.
Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates.