Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Just a Mom - Q & A, installment 1

Let me take a moment to re-introduce myself.

Hi, I'm Tyler. I'm a chronic over-committer.

You see, my girls are getting ready to go to camp. I'm getting ready for a family vacation. I've got shopping and packing to do, articles to write, errands to run, and kids to keep alive. So it's kinda not a good week for my first venture into vlogging.

I know, excuses, excuses. You should actually thank me, though. It's a really bad (read: gross, greasy, unshowered) hair day today. You didn't want to see that on video.

I will, however, answer some questions for you.

The first question I’ll answer in my Just a Mom series was left by Jen (aka Daddy’s Girl):

I have enjoyed reading this series Tyler, but I guess at this point in life, I am super hungry for how your advice ties into Scripture…

Thanks for asking, Jen!

I try to be cautious in my writing, that I’m not saying anything that is not backed up in Scripture. But I don’t always include those Scripture references in my blog posts.

There are a few reasons for this:
- Sometimes inserting a Biblical reference just won’t fit with the tone and style of the writing.
- Sometimes it’s a word count issue.
- If I’m totally honest, there are times I’m either too rushed or too lazy. (Just keepin' it real, people.)
- But most often it’s because I hope that you will be intrigued and pull out your Bible to see if it backs up what I’m saying.

I want to encourage you to continually check what you hear against the Word of God. Never, ever take anything any teacher tells you at face value! (Not even what I say.) If you want your relationship with God to be personal, you need to ask Him to speak to you personally by giving revelation from His Word.

First, I’ll share with you the particular passage that inspired this whole series. Then, I’ll give you a list of passages to look up on your own.

My favourite verse, the one that has motivated me to serve God beyond my role as a mother, is a clear, Biblical command to women:

Titus 2:3-5 (NLT) says, “Similarly, teach the older women to live in a way that honors God. They must not slander others or be heavy drinkers. Instead, they should teach others what is good. These older women must train the younger women to love their husbands and their children, to live wisely and be pure, to work in their homes, to do good, and to be submissive to their husbands. Then they will not bring shame on the word of God.”

While there are some clear directions to us women about how we should live our lives, I don't believe that is the intended focus of this passage. Rather, the key point is the fact that the older women are supposed to train the younger women.

As a young mother, I was tempted to brush off this passage as “not applicable” to me. I was the younger woman. (Heck, I’m still pretty young! Right?) Maybe you’re like me, thinking that this passage doesn’t apply. However, there is always a woman younger than you. She could be physically younger, spiritually younger, or in a younger stage of family-raising.

In other words, you are the older woman!

Your job, as the older woman, is to pass along the things that you learn. And not just the things about raising kids, keeping the house, and being a good wife. It says “teach what is good, to live wisely, to be pure, to do good.”

When I look up the word “good” in Strong’s concordance, I see that the Greek word is agathos. Agathos means: of good constitution or nature; useful, salutary; good, pleasant, agreeable, joyful, happy; excellent, distinguished; upright, honorable.

This same word – agathos – is paired with the word “do” and/or the word “works” throughout the New Testament. Some examples are:

- Matthew 19:16-17
- Galatians 6:10
- Ephesians 2:10
- Colossians 1:10
- 1 Timothy 2:10 and 5:10 (which, incidentally, are verses directed toward women)
- 2 Timothy 2:21 and 3:17
- Titus 3:1
- Hebrews 13:21
- 1 Peter 3:10-11

All that to say… We – women – are commanded to do good works, aka service or ministry, in addition to being keepers of the home, Godly wives, and loving mothers.

Now I’ll give you a few Scripture references to search out on your own. And I’d like to suggest that you look each passage up in a few different translations of the Bible. Some words lose their meaning in translation, but reading them in a different translation may provide you with a greater understanding of their meaning.

1. You were created to serve – Jeremiah 1:5 (NCV).
2. You were saved so that you could serve – 2 Timothy 1:9 (LB)
3. You belong to God, therefore you should serve – Romans 7:4 (TEV)
4. You were gifted by God so that you would contribute your unique gifts in service. Your contribution is vital. – 1 Corinthians 12:4-27 (NIV)

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