If I asked you to describe a homemaker, how would you reply?
A 1950s housewife complete with pearls and high heels?
A Household Cooking and Cleaning Service?
A Woman who sits around all day watching t.v. and snacking?
In reality, the work of a homemaker is something that goes much deeper than any of the common stereotypes above to the point that it has eternal implications.
The True Definition of a Homemaker–Much more than a Maid.
I was reading a familiar verse one day when it hit me– this is the definition of a homemaker.
The wise woman builds her house, but the foolish pulls it down with her hands.Proverbs 14:1
Did you see it?!
It’s so short and sweet that it’s easy to miss!
A woman who builds her house.
As always, the all wise-God has given us the definition in His Word.
I love how God doesn’t over-complicate things like we so often have the habit of doing. Simply put, a homemaker is a woman who is wise and builds her home.
Building Up my Home
So what exactly, I wondered, does it mean to build my house?
Because English is so often a more limited language than Hebrew and Greek, I love looking up what the original words meant. It gives me such a deeper and richer understanding of what God is saying.
In the original language, Hebrew, our English word “build” is banah, which means “to build” (Literally and figuratively); (begin to) build(-er), obtain children, make repair, set (up). [Taken from Strong’s Concordance]
So, although the definition is simple, the implications are almost endless.
There is so much we as women can do to build our homes up, there’s no possible way I could cover it all in this article. So I’m just going to mention some general areas we can do it.
We can build up, or edify, our homes:
As you can see, these encompass every aspect of the lives of ourselves and our family. And so homemaking is nothing to take lightly, even though the world does.
It is an honorable and noble endeavor.
To Be Good Homemakers, We Must Be Wise Women.
On our own, we have neither the strength, resources or wisdom to complete such a grand task.
That’s why Proverbs 14:1 doesn’t say “a woman builds her house.”
It says “a wise woman builds her house.” [emphasis added]
That small 4-letter word is the key to being good homemakers.
If you Have a Martha-type mindset like me, you might find yourself over the first part and focus on the second half.jump straight to the second part an start to think OK I want to be wise so I need to be building my house up because. my house up equals I will be a wise woman. But thatBut that’s not what it’s saying. It’s a contrast between 2 types of women: the wise and Building up her home is a fruit being wise.
And if we’re honest, we could all stand to gain more wisdom. So the question is where do we begin?
Wisdom begins with the fear of the Lord but fools despise wisdom and instruction.Proverbs 1:7 (CEB)
But God is the God who provides all we need and gives us this promise:
If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him.James 1:5
And how exactly are we to ask him for this wisdom to build our homes?
But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.James 1:6-8
If we pray and ask God for wisdom , but have doubts in the depths of our soul that He will actually do it, then we will be like the second woman described in Proverbs 14:1: Foolish and with our very own hands we will tear down our homes and families.
Homemaker or a Homebreaker?
Like every other area in life, there is no middle ground. No neutral.
We are either wise or foolish.
We are either Homemakers or Homebreakers.
Every single one of our actions, thoughts, words and attitudes either glorify God and build up our homes or work to destroy them.
The older women…that they admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be blasphemed.Titus 2:3-5
Basically Paul is telling Timothy, tell the older, more experienced women to teach the younger women good things. things with such importance they are capable of keeping others from blaspheming the Word of God.
And among the list, very clearly, is homemaking.
So let’s not minimize the power and significance of being a homemaker, as the world has the habit of doing.
Let’s seek to be women (whether mothers, wives, or single, whether full-time or part-time) who live with heads held high knowing that God has entrusted us and is supporting us in something much bigger than ourselves that can truly have an everlasting impact on the world.
No matter where you are in your journey of homemaking, God can give you the wisdom and strength to change and build up your home starting today (because, remember, to make repair is part of what it means).
A place where we can learn to love God, love others and love our homes more and in doing so fulfill the greatest commandments.
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