My heart became hot within me. As I mused, the fire burned; then I spoke with my tongue: "O Lord, make me know my end and what is the measure of my days; let me know how fleeting I am!"

10 May 2007

Just a little more

A couple wise friends have noted, in relation to Carl Trueman's essay ("here we go", below), that we need to be wise and Biblically balanced in discussing women's vocations, especially when it includes homeschooling. I believe their notes are helpful, so I want to put them before you as we continue our conversation.

Jeff rightly noted that it's not a sin for women to work hard and be tired. In fact, if a mother of young children or homeschooled children isn't a little tuckered out at bedtime, one would wonder how well she is fulfilling her calling. We must be careful not to drive our wives to "haggardness" by demanding more than they are capable of - but all of us are called to work six days a week. All of us should know that specific weariness at the very end of a day of Christ-honoring work. That's a good - nay, great - weariness. I hope the distinction is clear.

Another friend pointed out that women, especially women in the congregation I serve, may be wondering, "Does he think I'm haggard and way in over my head?" Let me say that, although I believe this is a problem in the reformed world and one I have observed in the past in local congregations, the women at Immanuel RPC are doing a bang-up job glorifying Christ in their various vocations. If it were not so, it would be the job of the husband and elders to find a way to help her out. I think we can expect the situation Trueman speaks of (a wife unfairly overworked) to surface every now and then. When it does, the church must help - beginning with her husband. But please know that my post was not done with any of the ladies at IRPC in mind.

Finally, the same friend pointed out that God has a pattern of leading men and women through times of stress and incredibly hard work. We are indeed jars of clay and sometimes we are pressed more than at other times. Being "haggard" doesn't necessarily mean something's off; when there are medical problems at home, when God brings a family or individual to a time of concerted effort for the kingdom (starting a church?), when God is dealing with big sin in the family...these can be times of God-ordained "haggardness." But let it be from God and not from insensitive husbands and inattentive churches.


Tamara said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tamara said...

Jared I heard an excerpt of a sermon by John Piper. It doesn't exactly relate to your post, but there are some correlations. I was wondering what you thought. It is on my blog entitled, "A Message that Stings."