Thursday, November 29, 2012

MRTOC: Gender Identity

"Children are born either male or female. Boys become men who can become husbands and fathers. Girls become women and may become wives and mothers." Those simple, straightforward statements, marking the up till now obvious difference between male and female, are under huge, unrelenting attack today from  Hollywood movies and every other media, from Gay Rights activists, from the humanistic religion that rules our nation, from our own sin natures. Therefore, it behooves mothers raising their own children (mrtoc) to open their eyes and become part of the solution instead part of the problem.

Men and women are designed differently by our Creator. Men are designed to be provider and protector of their family. The Savior is his model, who sacrificially laid down his life in love for His Bride. Women are designed to be helpmeet to their husband, to nurture their children. The Bride of Christ is her model, faithful to submit to and glorify her Head. Together, they train up their children to know our Creator, who made us male and female. Marriage and family were God's idea to demonstrate His sacrificial love of redemption for all those who would receive Him.

A lot is at stake in being faithful to the masculine and feminine roles God ordained. For many more than 50 years now in our nation, women have been encouraged to abandon all traditional feminine roles  and instead, to compete with men. This revolution left many homes without mrtoc. This "liberation" has made whole generations of women to become men in women's bodies and produced more and more men who are anti-marriage. They don't want to compete! Sex is easily available outside marriage now since feminism took over, so that gives men one more reason they needn't marry.

What's a mrtoc to do? First, make peace with your own femininity. Ask God to show you how glorious it is to be a women made in His image, for His purposes. Eve was made out of man, for man and brought to man to be his helpmeet, because he needed a helpmeet, not a competitor.

Second, ask God to show you how to honor your husband. There are a myriad of ways to show him honor, and many other ways to dishonor him. Choose to practice the honoring ways and to neglect the dishonoring ways. Honoring your husband speaks louder than any words you will ever utter. Respecting your husband says to your boys that it is very good/valuable/important to be a man, husband, father taking care of his family. It says to your girls that being cherished by your husband is the best thing in the world!

Third, don't treat your children all the same. They are not neuter, all the same because they are immature. Each boy is a young man, each girl is a young woman. Yes, they all eat dinner and have other commonalities, but they have different destinies. Don't foster their competitiveness by treating them all the same. Set back in the 1800's, there is a story called Smiling Hill Farm we read in our home school. Progress brought a beautiful coach that traveled the roads around Smiling Hill Farm with mail and passengers. Every boy in those parts wanted to grow up to become the driver of that handsome coach. Matilda, who lived at Smiling Hill Farm, said she wanted to drive it too! But she was quickly reminded that women didn't drive coaches, only men. So she changed her desire and said she wanted to marry the driver of the coach and have him take her for a ride on it every Sunday afternoon! Today, we laugh, knowing, of course, that a woman could drive a coach. She could compete with men. But how could she be a mrtoc AND compete with men at the same time? She couldn't. Mrtoc are either important and very valuable and necessary, or they are not.

I was born in 1951. Girls wore dresses and wanted to be mommies, nurses or teachers. Boys wanted to be cowboys, soldiers, doctors. Girls played with dolls, made mud pies, played house. Boys wore pants, played with weapons, cars, erector sets. Girls played with girls and boys played with boys. The fall after I graduated high school in 1969, the dress code changed to let girls wear pants. Now, in 2012, it is considered flat out wrong to teach a girl to prepare to become a mrtoc (since it takes no skill at all!), or that becoming a professional will make becoming a mrtoc unlikely, not to mention that becoming a good helpmeet would be virtually impossible as well. Of course a woman CAN become a professional. But how much chance will her daughter have of becoming a good helpmeet or a mrtoc? And how likely is it that her son will find and marry a good helpmeet or a mrtoc?

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Moms Raising Their Own Children: Example & Work

While I was visiting Keith and Bethany and their children at their home in Michigan this past week, I picked up a book about the myth of being able to have a full-time/outside the home career and children too and do it all well.

The author makes the point that it has done mothers who raise their own children an insulting disservice to label them "stay at home moms". What they really are is mothers raising their own children (mrtoc), an infinitely complex, demanding, fulfilling calling and occupation that each child's mother is best suited to because no one else loves her child like she does.

Mothers who raise their own children are as much like the daycare providers or babysitters, whom children who are being raised by other than their mothers are entrusted to several hours each day, as someone you pay to come in to clean your house is like a homemaker. Keeping a child safe, warm, dry, fed and entertained is a fraction of what a mother does for her children.

For example, mothers are constantly training their children by their example to be like themselves, to value what they value, to do what they do. They are teaching them limits and giving them areas to explore in great numbers of ways, all day long. Other children who are not related to them are not there to compete for their mother's attention. No, each mother's child is the apple of her eye, and she communicates that to them all day long in a huge variety of ways. Just this one aspect of mrtoc is reason enough to only entrust your children to childcare providers for a limited time each week. But there are many other important reasons as well. Here is one big one.

Work is what we are made for. Each successful adult in life is able to work at a variety of tasks that bring satisfaction and meaning as well as provision for his life. Being able to work is a skill that makes one responsible and able to be independent. Children who grow up cared for mothers and fathers who include them in many of the daily tasks necessary to keep body and soul together gain well-being and confidence that a child who has everything done for them and is left to play all day with peers will not develop. So a mrtoc having her toddler put the forks on, dry the unbreakable cups, help her make the bed, fold the washcloths, fix the meal, dust the bookcase or help her in the grocery store is doing a far-reaching service for that child. She is teaching him/her to work and that she/he is an important part of the family, necessary to its well-being. This is the kind of self-esteem you want a child to develop. Child care providers cannot do this, it being their very job to do everything for the child!

In future posts, we'll talk about children learning male and female identity, customized training according to each child's bent, basic obedience, spiritual training, playing outdoors and other home health practices, preparation for formal learning, pitfalls, living on a budget, how cool this is or isn't and much more. The riches mothers can impart to their own children in their own homes will take your breath away! Every sacrifice that is made to make this kind of home possible for your children is worth it!

I raised my own five children in my home, starting in 1979. I'm still learning how to do the things above with my youngest son who is 17 now. I was very encouraged by the book I mentioned. It made me proud of what I had done and am still doing. And it made me want to encourage every mother I know to raise their own children!