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Archive for August, 2008

I’d like to encourage any readers to take a look at Anne’s BRILLIANT post “What Exactly is a Helpmeet?” when considering how to think about Sarah Palin’s nomination for the Vice Presidency and why every patriarchalists’ knickers are knotted, bloomers are in a bunch, hair is on fire over it. I actually read somewhere (and I can’t remember right now, for the life of me) that Palin will be serving as John McCain’s helpmeet if she wins this election.  I can’t believe this person was serious.  They must seriously have no idea what a helpmeet is, what is their function, how only husbands and wives can have that kind of relationship, that not all women are called to be that… or what true marital partnership is about.  The give and take, the fluidity, the organic nature of marriage must be totally lost on this person.  It makes me so sad… it really does.  I’m just beginning to discover and develop this kind of relationship with my husband as I come out of the duldrums of self-inflicted patriarchalism.  And what little I’ve experienced has been glorious!  But I digress..

Of course, if you choose to vote for Palin, and you claim to be a Christian, well, you’re just a “Christian” because no real, authentic Christian could stand to have a woman second in line for the presidency.  Never mind that she has a fantastic political record.  Never mind that she possesses the views that hundreds of thousands of Christians in this country profess to hold.  Never mind that there is no sales tax or income tax in Alaska thanks to her and the people actually get a rebate from the state every year based on family size and not on income.

Nope.  She wears a skirt and has the wrong body parts so she can’t lead the nation.  She’s just as bad as Hillary!  If McCain wins, God is going to put this country under judgment!  Its an EMBARASSMENT for our country to have a female leader of this magnitude.  Deborah was an embarassment for Israel.  Palin will be for us!  {{For any obtuse readers out there, those last lines are supposed to be dripping with sarcasm)).

Well, count me in as one of those “Christians” who has fallen for this brilliant political move on John McCain’s part.  I wasn’t going to vote at all- and I was most certainly NOT going to vote for the Constitution Party candidate- but now, I probably will take the time to go cast my vote this November.  I’m actually looking forward to it.

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The End of an Era

Tomorrow night marks the end of an era in our family. My husband has worked nights since before we were married eight years ago. During that time, he has gotten married, attended school full time for a BA in Philosophy, moved halfway across the country to attend graduate school, lost his first child to a terminal condition, had his wife crack up, get pregnant with the next, moved back to CA, had his wife have such a nervous breakdown that she had to go on SDI for almost a year, see his first son be born, find a new, full time job, move three more times after the move home, watch my dad die from pancreatic cancer, have another baby, and start a new BS degree in Civil Engineering. All the while, working nights and surviving (barely) on 3-5 hours of sleep in any given 24 hour period.

In other words, my darling, courageous, strong, patient, LONG-SUFFERING husband has been a walking zombie for a long time.

And tomorrow night, he will be free to join the daylight once again. Tomorrow night is his last time working at night, hopefully forever. I will have my husband home, at night, to do all the great things that families do together when they come together after a long day’s work. We’ll be able to eat dinner together. We’ll go to bed at the same time and be able to sleep in the same bed… at the same time… every night of the week! He’ll work with me to put the kids to bed so maybe, just maybe, they’ll have a more normal, defined routine. I’ll be able to snuggle up with him and watch a movie or Scrubs or one of my crazy reality shows that I like so much. Yippee!

You may ask how we will live. Well, patriocentrists beware! This woman has found herself a JOB! Outside the home! Yes, dear friends, I am serving as my husband’s helper suitable, meeting his greatest and most pressing need (namely, a normal schedule so that he can finish school and get a real job). I know he never thought I’d do it. And yet, what is an ezer for if she’s not one who will fight fiercely to build up and protect and strengthen the man to whom God has given her? How could I look at my husband and tell him that I was choosing housewifery (a NOBLE, AMAZING, EXHAUSTING, WONDERFUL calling) over being his helper suitable? I am my husband’s helper before I am his “domestic engineer”. I am my husband’s helper even before I am mother to my children.

When I thought of it in those terms, how could I do any different?

Do I give him Lydia Sherman’s answer to one’s husband when he asks her to go out and work? “Sure! After I finish all the laundry, cooking, sewing, decorating, cleaning, dusting, ironing, raising the children etc” (Now, this is not a direct quote, but it is the gist of something she said at the Christian Homemaking Conference back in 2007). Or do I put my own desires aside and do what is best for him and serve him in this way?

And for those scoffers out there, my children remain the care of my husband during the day and family members when he is in class.

Am I in this for a career? Certainly not. The day my husband gets a full time day job, I am OUTTA THERE! Do I enjoy my job? Oh yeah! I work for a great agency that gives referrals for non-profit social and health and human services agencies to people who call the toll-free number. I help homeless people find shelter. I help people pay find a way to pay their rent. I help people find food. I help people find work. I help people find counseling. I help people find domestic violence shelters. I help people find suicide prevention services. I point people to churches that can help them all day long. Do I enjoy my job? You bet I do!

This is a huge adjustment for me and my family. I haven’t worked full time since before my son was born. I have to rearrange my household tasks to accommodate the new schedule. Its taking some adjustment, for all of us, but I believe that God will bless us for our obedience to this particular call that he has placed on our family.

So, all this is to ask that you pray for us. Times are going to be tough. Prices are going up and, unfortunately, salaries are not. I need discipline. Anyway, congratulations to my husband! I’ll be glad to have you around! LOL!

ETA: Any negative comments about my husband of any kind will be instantaneously deleted with no explanation. I defy even the most ardent entrepreneurial patriocentrist agrarian to even attempt to work half as hard as my husband has to provide for his family.

EDITED AGAIN TO ADD: I have nothing whatsoever against having a career… I just don’t want one 🙂

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The Baylys Part II

I don’t have the time (or desire) to scout out all the patrio blogs, but when the discussion came up a few posts back about the Baylys, I though this comment from that discussion thread was most informative of their way of dealing with opposing view points [please note this is verbatim from their site, and here‘s the link]:

Maggie,
There are many Christ-followers, myself included, who feel that the Bayly’s and their followers are grossly misprepresenting the Scriptures. God is no misogynist. For that, I am truly thankful. I recently wrote about the Biblical basis for Christian egalitarianism here:
[NOTE FROM TIM: link to false doctrine removed]

Bayly Brothers,

I lived in the type of marriage that this poem describes, lived it as the faithful wife who did not want a “wife” but sought to be as the poem describes a wife should be.

I came out of that place broken and bleeding, and strongly believe that the souls of both my husband and myself were deeply and terribly wounded by what amounted to idolatry. We are stumbling into a new way of relating, by the sheer and utter grace of a God who binds the wounds of the brokenhearted and the broken in spirit.

I put my husband in the place of Christ (well-intentioned, thinking that in so doing I was following Christ). My husband put himself in Christ’s place. Both of us suffered terribly as a result, because of the deep gravity of our error.

This poem describes the way that a man and a woman should relate to *Jesus Christ.* No human should relate to another human in the way that this poem describes. It departs, severely, from what Scripture says but depends, rather, on what some interpret (and that rather loosely) Scripture to mean.

In His Grip,
Molly Aley

Posted by: Molly | August 23, 2008 at 02:51 AM

Well, if Molly comes around here, I hope she re-posts that link, ‘cuz I’d like to read it.  🙂  We here at WWF will never remove a link to another page merely because it has something we happen to disagree with, to consider false doctrine, or even heresy. Its like the Baylys are part of the Monty Python Church Police (only a lot less funny)!

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Here is a quote from a novel I am currently reading called The Source by James A. Michener:

On this matter the testimony of the Torah was clear. Women under Judaism were treated no worse than Near Eastern women in general: deplored at birth, endured in adolescence, married off as soon as possible, discriminated against in law and subjected to misery if they became unwanted widows. Numerous were the Biblical texts in which some Old Testament hero rejoiced at the news he was the father of a son, and one of the morning prayers recited by men included the passage: “Blessed art Thou , O Lord our God, King of the universe, who has not made me a woman.”

The sixty-three tractates of the Talmud developed each of these themes: “Happy is he whose children are male and woe to him whose children are female.” In passage after passage this massive body of Jewish teaching admonished against the dangers of the female… The Talmud specifically directed that women must not be taught to read religious works…

I know that this is not a historical textbook, but I remember hearing somewhere that a daily prayer Jewish men prayed was something like: “I thank the Lord I was not born a Gentile or a woman.” Anyhow, to me all those in the patriarchy crowd like to point back to the good ol’ days when the patriarchs ruled. Hmm… seems to me that those were awful times for women. Why do we want to go back to Abraham’s time?

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A note about comments

For the time being, until we feel more comfortable, all comments will be moderated.  We’re sorry to have to do this because it very much goes against what we were trying to accomplish here.  But, allowing aggressive posting to push away readers whose presence we value and who help to sharpen us isn’t what we want either.

We ask your patience as we take the time to read each comment before approving it.

Thank you.

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My answer to the latest from Doug Phillips’ blog.

Real wives, enter here. Uber-militant-patriarchalists, beware. Anne Basso is writing this blog post, and her words are real, but difficult for the hyper-pats. Anne is part of the league of White Washed Feminist bloggers, and the following is just some plain old girlfriend advice.

12 Things We Should Do As Wives:

1. We should know that we and our husbands chose of our own free will to pursue a life with one another. You are not his child and should not be treated as such. I’ve found the best way to continue to receive that kind of respect from my husband is to give it. Just as I am not his child who needs her day mapped out for her and her tasks set, neither is he mine. We must strive to treat each other like the adults we both are.

2. Be respectful of where he is spiritually. In some homes wives are the more spiritual and/or the more knowledgeable of the two. That’s not something to be ashamed of or hide from him. Nor is it something to be prideful about. The best decisions in a home, spiritual or otherwise, are best made between husbands and wives as a team. With both parties input and acceptance, things go off so much better. I think I would be quite irked by a husband who acted like my spiritual better when we are both equal before Christ. Likewise, I will treat him with the same respect.

3. Be yourself. If you are naturally gregarious and your husband is quiet, you do NOT have to be silent simply because that’s his nature. Now, granted, we also shouldn’t be rude. Talking over someone or interrupting them is rude and it should go without saying that we should give our husbands the same respect we’d give anyone else. Being a talker in no way means that you’re speaking for the family. And remember, your husband married you. Whether you’re quiet or a talker, he loves you and doesn’t want you to be someone you are not.

4. Speak of him respectfully to others. I always try to imagine what I’d like my husband to say about me while he’s at work and I try to speak similarly about him. I’m blessed to have a fantastic husband and I like that people know that. When we have a personal issue it’s just that: personal.

5. Remember why you love him. I think it’s easy to get bogged down in the day to day of living and forget what drew us to our husbands in the first place. There are a thousand things I love about my husband and when I take the time to remember them, it softens me. And the more kindness, thoughtfulness, and respect I offer to him, the more of those things he offers to me in return. That allows our marriage to be one of mutual giving and sacrifice for one another.

6. Learn how to talk to your husband. If I ask my husband to do something and he agrees but doesn’t do it, I want to find a way to remind him without making him defensive. A “Hey, honey, thank you for helping get the kids to bed. I noticed that the trash wasn’t out, can I help you with that?” goes over so much better than a “Why didn’t you take the trash out? I told you I needed that done!”. I find that when I approach my husband the right way, it almost always avoids an argument and gets things done. I think part of that is also remembering that we’re on the same side, not opposite ones.

7. Remind your husband of why you love him. I think marriage grows through mutual nurturing. Kind of like a garden. He should always know why he’s special to you.

8. Approach is important for many things in marriage. And if there is a time that you must bring some behavior or issue to his attention, think in advance about how you want to approach it. Think about why he might be doing what he’s doing, or what his thought process is. Even if you disagree, knowing where he’s coming from will help when you want to discuss it. And I think one should always make it a discussion. Putting him on the defensive will not help at all.

9. Speak wisely. I really hate being told to hold my tongue. I have just as much right to my thoughts and opinions as a man does. That doesn’t mean that it’s always wise to say so. This goes hand and hand with approach. When we choose our words carefully, we have a much better chance of engaging in conversations that help our family, make it stronger, resolve a conflict, or find an answer than if we just say the first thing that pops in to our heads.

10. It’s totally okay to have things that are his and yours. I love certain movies, novels, tea, games, etc. which my husband has absolutely no interest in. And vice versa. I encourage him in his interests because they make him happy. He does likewise for me. There’s nothing wrong with that. Those things that enrich us at the very least give us something to talk about. I don’t have to pretend I’m interested in golf, nor does he have to pretend he’s interested in my latest novel. That said, we do need activities that we do together. I hear of couples who grow apart, and I’ve learned that growing together takes work and time. It’s worth it to invest the time and energy into growing together. But you don’t have to do that by being interested in all the same things he is. Like I said earlier, be yourself. He loves you.

11. The marriage comes first. One day my children will move out and I will live out my days with my husband. It is important that we nurture the marriage relationship because it is stability for ourselves, our children, and because it needs to last. My marriage is built on the rock of our faith, and our family is built on the foundation of our marriage. That must be tended to and cared for. My husband and I both make sacrifices in order to meet the needs of our children. But I try to be careful to make sure my husband understands that he is a priority and that his needs will also be met as he in turn does for me.

12. Remember that your character far outshines your exterior. Beauty is more than skin deep. Your husband cares more about how you treat your marriage and family than whether or not you’re wearing lipstick or that last baby has added a few pounds to your middle. Caring for one another as precious children of God creates a connection that goes beyond what you’re wearing, how you’ve fixed your hair, or if you’ve applied make-up.

Marriage is a beautiful relationship made up of mutual sacrifice, love, and care. It’s two imperfect people loving someone each other selflessly. While I have focused here on what we women should do, I think it’s all pretty applicable to husbands, too. We all falter. We all make mistakes. Marriage involves two sinners, after all. But it’s worth it. We make mistakes, and we forgive each other. Most importantly, I refuse to see marriage as a list of don’ts. I refuse to see it in negative terms at all. Marriage is a gift that God has given us so that we won’t be alone. We should cherish that gift being positive in thought and charitable in word and deed. And we should receive that in return.

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Here’s a real gem from the Bayly Blog… Its not the poem, so much, as the comments below it.  All points indicate to the Bayly brothers’ obsession with being the boss.  If you have to keep reminding people that you’re in charge, you aren’t doing a very good job leading.

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