Thursday, August 16, 2007

What is a homemaker?

This has been a busy week. I'm trying to get school shopping done for my kids - four of whom will be in school this year. Needless to say, it's a slow, tedious process! I've got three down, one to go.

As I was reading through the comments from my post on that man, I realized how much I've come to love the term "homemaker." I used to think about it with disdain. It represented all that I was hoping NOT to become: a myopic, insignificant slave with no life outside the four walls of my house.

But as I've begun to devote myself to becoming one, being a "home"-maker has come to represent something far beyond the menial tasks that appear to be the job description. It has become a word that is incredibly compelling to me: It means I'm the one who makes my house a home. It doesn't matter if I'm working outside the home, if I live in a big house or a small one, if I have no children or a bunch of them. It crosses all socioeconomic boundaries.

It means I have a finger on the pulse of my family: not just my children, but my husband, too. It is not a weak, passive job that can be passed off to an unskilled day-laborer. I am a filter for keeping out the bad, and a channel for funneling in the good. I can create an atmosphere of cool indifference, or a warm one of loving acceptance with the moment-by-moment choices I make. With each load of laundry, with each spill I mop up, with each hug, and with each "I love you," I can direct hearts toward strong character and toward faith in God. I can "make" my home.

It's something God created me to do, and it's a powerful thing.
She sets about her work vigorously;
her arms are strong for her tasks.
Proverbs 31:17

19 comments:

Christy. said...

AMEN sister! :0) I love it when I fill out an application and it asks my professions so I can say, "homemaker".

emily said...

YAY Katherine!!!! This is so beautiful. I love the part "I am a filter for keeping out the bad and a funnel for channeling in the good." You are so awesome! Your kids and husband are lucky!!

Chris @ Come to the Table said...

From one homemaker to another, I couldn't agree more. I have a very important job and title. :)

Wendy said...

Yep, I used to view that word in a very different way. And, now I couldn't agree w/you more. It is a blessing and a privilege!

SAHMmy Says said...

Great post! It's all about the attitude.

Susanne said...

You really need to compile these and make a devotional. Beautiful writing full of meaning, Katherine!

Jill said...

Great thoughts. I have seen the effects of my attitude on my kiddos and husband and it is not always good if you know what I mean. Thanks for he reminder and encouragement. It is so wonderful to see other women living out biblical womanhood and spurring us all on toward the prize.

angeleyes Blue said...

As someone who was always sooooo proud that she was able to take a leave of abscense from work for 6 years to raise our little ones, I can't agree with you more.

My hubby and I were always able to make thngs work out so that the kids were never in daycare. My hat and heart to people who need to do that.

We never did. We tried once...I got so balistic just looking at the daycare center that my husband gave me a huge hug and said there could be another way.

So he worked and I was stay at home mom. Then there was that DAY! he came home and said I quit my job. You QUIT? HE said yes I did.

That was back when our son was 5 who now by the way is 15. Gosh has it been that long?! When he found another job it was third shift working with the elderly and I got a teaching job. By now the kids were school age. Daddy was working 11PM to 7AM and I was teaching from 8-4 during the day. We would meeet in the driveway of our home--Him getting home and me leaving for work. Anything new? Love you. We did that for 2 years.

We are both still working and now the kids are teenagers. I insist that they are home every day for dinner.

I filter the good and the bad--but with teenagers well... they are teenagers. I am just happy they make it home for dinner every night at 6.

Margo said...

It seems like such a daunting task. My problem is that I struggle with perfectionism, so with each mistake I tend to beat myself up. But God never said we'd be without mistakes, right? I want so much to get things right, but I never feel like I'm living up to the task. I just need Him so much!!!

This is a beautiful post, and it's all so true. Thanks again!

Deidre said...

I'm learning this. I'm surrendering to the job and praying to give up some selfish ways so my family has ALL of me during these years. It's a learning process, but I love how you put it. It's a noble, worthy job ... the best once we surrender.

Ange said...

What a beautiful post. I always wanted the "homemaker" moniker but the first few years i did begin to resent it. As time has gone on and wisdom and gradually moved in I embrace it more and more. I do confess to insecurity about it especially when visit some friends who I consider the 'super' homemaker, but the Spirit of Truth gently reminds me I am who I am because He made me, and that we're all still a work in progress.
Blessings!

Keri Ann said...

It's so funny you should write on this topic, because I've found myself becoming proud of the Homemaker title just in the past couple of weeks. I wrote it in the "Occupation" blank on a form I was filling out and was surprised to find that it brought a smile to my face!

The title does indeed bring a whole new, joyful meaning to the work we do day in and day out!

fAiThFuL cHiCk said...

This is one of the most touching descriptions of "the job" i have ever heard. God spoke to me through your post today. He revealed that I was, quite possibly, feeling unworthy when I tell people I am a homemaker. He is doing a work in me and I appreciate your words today. Blessings...

Rachel Anne said...

Its funny how reluctant we are to embrace something so beautiful. Hard, but beautiful. This was great.

Mommy-fied said...

This is so strange... you hit the nail on the head. I went through the feeling of being insignificant to the realisation the big role I have. But it's tough. My house's always in a mess - I just try my best and pray for the love to cover the multitude of sins!

Anonymous said...

Perfectly said. In my town, homemakers are few and far between. I wish more women could feel the same peace and joy we do in giving ourselves to the home. It's a great job.

Ladybug said...

I now wear my title with pride! :)

Karen said...

Stopping in for the first time.

This was a great post. As a 'homemaker' of 17 years, I've been feeling wornout of late. Over the summer, one of my kids and my husband were gone most of the time, and I got a bit of a reprieve having just 2 at home and letting things go for a while. Now, I'm back with renewed vigor! I love my role in life. Your post says it beautifully!

Gina Conroy said...

One of the things I'm looking forward to about the kids going to school this year is I'll be able to be a better homemaker and part of that means I'll be able to be a better mommy when my kids come home!