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We're builders- Part 3


I just realized that the "In Other Words" quote today was on being builders as it pertains to women! Wow! What a "coincidence"- NOT! This is a God thing! He's totally been speaking to me as I study this ministry God has charged me with as a woman, and now to find it being discussed at In Other Words. So I'm turning this post into an In Other Words contribution.

You can also read Part 1, or Part 2 of my series called "We're Builders."
For more blog posts on this topic head over to Chelsea at Joyfully Living, the hostess for In Other Words.
Today's quote is:“We as women, think of ourselves as mothers, teachers, nurses and son on, but God says that we are builders. We usually relegate this role to the men, but we are building with something far great than brick and timber.” Nancy Campbell, The Power of Motherhood: What the Bible Says about Mothers.
In this series I want to focus on what it means to be a builder as a wife, but I do want to use a post to address the woman who is not a wife.

When I was praying about this subject the other day, thinking particularly of single women and women who are divorced, the whisper in my ears was, "Let her be a homemaker." What was revealed to me in that moment was not quiting a "job" to stay home particularly, nor was it speaking of being a wife and mom, but rather a ministry that ANY woman can take up just as our Lord took up footwashing.

I pictured a young woman in a dorm. She loves the Lord, she desires to walk in His ways, yet she is surrounded by the ways of the world and the sinful desires of her own fleshly nature. "Let her be the one washing the dishes, picking up, making a nice dinner, bringing a meal to another person in her dorm, hosting or starting a Bible study, visiting a sick friend, etc. Let her be known amongst those she lives as a person who always makes people feel at home and who speaks truth and grace."

I also pictured a woman worn. She works full-time. She's divorced. She's a single-mom. She loves the Lord and desires to walk in His ways, yet she is also engulfed in worldliness and accusations from the enemy along with the weakness of her own flesh. "Let her be concerned with homemaking wherever she is. Let her be the one picking up the break room and bringing in goodies to her co-workers. Let her be known for her kindness towards her ex-husband and not speak evil of him. Let her be known for her care of her children and not her annoyance with them. Let her be prayerful and hospitable. Let her lay a foundation for her own children in Christ through what she speaks to them- teaching them about the God she serves, and letting them see her attitude of trust and worship."

I just wanted to address these two areas because they seem to be the areas that the enemy often accuses me in as I seek to fulfill the ministry of building in my own home as unto the Lord. I'm not a single-woman in a dorm, or a single-mom (though I was at one time), but the enemy wants to accuse the Lord of excluding these in His way for a woman. In my mind I often hear his accusations but he's a liar. As women in the body of Christ our "wifehood" is to Jesus. So that whether we serve Him as single women, divorced women, or married ones, we serve HIM! We are all "a wife" in a sense. Our lives should speak a legacy of building our homes to the magnification of Christ, whoever that home includes. Whether it is a husband, children, co-workers, girls in our dorm room, etc.

Isaiah 54 speaks to the building or enlarging work God does through ANY woman who serves Him. A barren woman, a woman who's never been in labor (I think of a single woman when I read that) a widow, a shamed woman (maybe a woman with a promiscuous past) a divorced woman, and a married one- all are mentioned in this chapter which has often given me much courage as a woman. ( Just for the record, I know that this passage speaks to us now because the end of verse 17 says, "This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord..." Are you a servant of the Lord? Then this is for you!) It says:
  • Sing, O barren one, who did not bear; break forth into singing and cry aloud, you who have not been in labor! For the children of the desolate one will be more than the children of her who is married, says the LORD (ESV)

  • Enlarge (that's building) the place of your tent, and let the curtains of your habitations (that's your "home") be stretched out; do not hold back; lengthen your cords and strengthen your stakes. (ESV)

  • Fear not, for you will not be ashamed; be not confounded, for you will not be disgraced; for you will forget the shame of your youth, and the reproach of your widowhood you will remember no more. (ESV)

  • For your Maker is your husband, the LORD of hosts is his name; and the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer, the God of the whole earth he is called. (ESV)

  • For the Lord has called you like a wife deserted and grieved in spirit, like a wife of youth when she is cast off, says your God. (ESV)

  • No weapon formed against you shall prosper, And every tongue which rises against you in judgment You shall condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, And their righteousness is from Me," Says the Lord. (NKJV)

Where do you fall in these differing versions of the woman of God? Are a single? Are you married? Are you divorced? Do you have a shameful past? Are you a young woman still living in your father's house? Whatever your circumstances are or have been they cannot and do not negate the building work you are called and enable to do through the Lord.

The scripture is full of examples of women with less than ideal situations who were used by the Lord as they submitted their lives to Him to do a building work for His kingdom.

Here's just a few:

  • Rachel. Rachel was a barren woman. (See Genesis 29-30)
  • Leah. Leah was an unloved wife. (See Genesis 29-30)
  • Rahab. Rahab was a prostitute. (See Joshua 2)
  • Ruth. Ruth was totally foreign to the ways of God and a widow. (See the Book of Ruth)
  • The Samaritan woman at the well (John 4). She had 5 previous husbands and was living with a man who was not her husband when God gave her a taste of the Living Water and she stopped thirsting for men to satisfy her. Immediately she was used to build God's kingdom.
  • Mary, the woman who mothered Jesus. Mary was single, a virgin, yet was called to be a homemaker for a man chosen for her and the Son of God in flesh.

If a woman has tasted the mercy and grace of God through Christ for herself, her circumstances will not matter. She will seek to build a home for the glory of God...whether the souls who make up her home are her own husband and kids, or strangers (as in Rahab's case), or neighbor's (as in the Samaritan woman's case), or an in-law (as in Ruth's case).

What souls are you making a home for? Jesus gave us a taste of our eternal home in His years of serving and loving here on earth...all the way to the cross. We women who have His life in us can also let the majesty of God be touchable by humbling ourselves as our Lord did, and washing some feet, or dishes. We can be the vessels through which souls around us are encouraged to trust in the living God by whipping up some breakfast, whether it be fish by the sea as Jesus did in John 21:12 or pancakes and eggs in your house or brought to the souls you seek to build up for the kingdom.

Lord, help me to be a kingdom builder, a home maker for Your glory wherever I am. Right now I have a husband and two children, I pour my life out into them for You my sweet Jesus! When I have opportunity to be stretched to include in my building other souls let me be a home maker for them too!

Comments

  1. WHEW! Sheila...that was FANTASTIC...we women are all called to builders..and what wonderful reminders you bring to my attention in a single mom or a divorced woman or a widow..or a woman who is childless..they too can be "builders" and homemakers....just in a different way...all serving the same God!!

    We are vessels in all forms...
    Thank you for this...it was wonderful and your perspective was enlightening!!

    Always, always a blessing to come by!!
    peace!
    lori

    ReplyDelete
  2. This is really great - we're all homemakers. Even if not married, or without children, we each have a role in being homemakers. Great insight today!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Absolutely awesome post! I especially love this: "If a woman has tasted the mercy and grace of God through Christ for herself, her circumstances will not matter." God bless you for doing this series. I look forward to going back and reading parts 1 and 2.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Such a very powerful post, be blessed.

    ReplyDelete

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