Tuesday, November 01, 2005
In 1996 I was nineteen years old trying to find out who I was and what I was becoming. Many of my friends from High School were off at College living the dorm room life and experiencing what most people that age experience. I did not go away to school, I decided to go to a near by junior college only to quit after a few classes. School was not something I felt motivated to do so I didn't! About a year later I tried again at an actual University only to quit after a few short weeks. It seems that my only dream in life at that point was to be a wife and a mother. So I spent a lot of time praying that God would begin to shape and mold me into the capable wife. Actually, I prayed it almost every single day. Living on my own was something I did pretty quick after High School. Working was something I had to do so I held many different jobs for a few years at a time and would get bored and do something else. Never did I feel quite content. As crazy as it may sound, I wanted to cook, I wanted to clean, I wanted to take care of a home that was my own and I wanted to be married with kids. It was during those years of being single that I learned to cook. God placed many different women in my life that showed me the basics of cooking and baking. If you have the "main ingredients" on hand at all times, you can always throw something together for an unexpected guest. So, my kitchen is always stocked with nine rudimentary things for mixing up something sweet! Vanilla, sugar, brown sugar, eggs, butter, salt, flower, baking soda and chocolate chips! Mix all of those together and you get some tasty chocolate chip cookies! And every guest not only needs something sweet to eat but something sweet to drink so my refrigerator always has a pitcher of sweet tea that I continually stock (Jeremy adores my sweet tea so I always have some made). As my desire to be a wife and mother grew stronger, as my cooking became tastier and my homemaking began to take form, my desire to be a true lady of virtue became a longing like none other.
Keeping my home in order is quite the chore. Having two kids a little less than two years a part makes for a very busy, messy and noisy house. A few months ago I begin to study this passage in Proverbs again. As I did, the Lord begin to teach me new things and the verses began to speak to me in ways they never had before. Not only does my home need to be in order by cleaning, organizing, scheduling, cooking and disciplining, it needs to be in order spiritually. Since I am the heart of this home and the affairs of this home are to be managed by me (Proverbs 31:27), I must make sure that I have all the "main ingredients" for being a Godly woman. If I wanted to make chocolate chip cookies but I did not have eggs, my cookies would not taste very good. Chocolate Chip cookies without the chocolate chips would not be chocolate chip cookies, would they? Just as my kitchen shelves should always hold nine key ingredients, so should my daily life. Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control(Galatians 5:22-23). As I study the passage in Proverbs, God continually shows me the fruits of the spirit being displayed by this beautiful woman. The more I study her, the more I see my role at home and what an honor, privilege and blessing it is. Oh and the sweet tea? Well, the Holy Spirit has become such a sweet reminder in my daily life of how my home should taste to others.
So, I ask you my friend, do you have all the ingredients needed? Or are the "main ingredients" missing? At times I get low on sugar, so I make a note when I see it getting low. That way I never run out. Quite often I run low on self control so I ask the Lord to give me the strength and self discipline to refill. How about you? It may be time to check your shelf and see what's missing.