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Friday’s Free Advice

I had a few ideas for my Friday’s Free Advice floating around this mushy brain of mine yesterday (the end of the school year has this kind of effect on me).  I thought about tackling the ups and downs of transition (because I am in the middle of transition right now – going from rigid routine to a more relaxed summer schedule).  However, I read something this morning that literally had me cringing.  So disappointing was the website I perused, that I feel compelled to change the direction of my post.


What, you may ask, could I have possibly read that would have such an effect on me?  In my “vast” experience (please note the sarcasm here) of networking, I have come across quite a variety of bloggers out here in the web-o-sphere.  Intriguing, to say the least, has this journey been for me.  A few weeks ago I read a very well-written post about raising daughters to be homemakers.  The concept sounded sweet and inoffensive at first.  As I continued reading, however, the subtle, and then not-so-subtle, message  – that it is God’s command and calling for ALL women to stay at home and raise daughters for the soul purpose of becoming homemakers – became overwhelmingly apparent.  I nearly fell out of my seat.  It pained me, knowing that thousands of women read this particular blog, and look to the writer as a kind of expert and authority.  So disturbed was I that I spoke up and commented.  I felt like a lone voice in the wilderness.  I’m not about bashing those women who feel called by God to stay home and be homemakers.  I am, however, completely in opposition to the idea that the only place for a woman, in God’s perfect design, is the home.  I wrote a little bit about some of my thoughts on this particular subject last week.


Out of curiosity, I decided to do a little informal research this morning.  In some of the banter regarding the “homemaker” philosophy (or theology, as these individuals are preaching), the name “Botkin Sisters” had come up.  I had never heard of these people before, but it sounded like they are pretty influential in this movement.  I Googled them, thinking I would find two elderly women with their hair up in tight buns wearing prairie clothing.  What I found were two very beautiful young women – ages 20 and 23.  I thought to myself, “These are the women responsible for this movement?  You’ve got to be kidding me!”  That they are lovely and attractive I believe woos young women and mothers who, perhaps, have either been raised in homes that were heavily dysfunctional, or are struggling in difficult marriages.  The fact that they are in their early twenties and delving out advice and “preaching” this distorted doctrine, deeply, and I mean deeply, concerns me.


So, here is my Friday’s Free Advice for you:


Oh be careful little eyes what you read in a blog!  Just because a person has a blog, writes well and presents their message in an articulate manner, does not make them an expert!  That includes this blog too.  I am human, completely fallible and certainly capable of error.  Much of what I write is the junk I’m either working through, or full disclosure of my personal dysfunction.  There are times I could actually be wrong (perish the thought!).  If something I write doesn’t sit well with you, that might be because it wasn’t intended for you.  God was using a particular situation in my life to teach me something personal…and I’m just sharing my journey with you.  If you are truly looking for answers to difficult questions in your life, please, please, go to the Word of God first.  Don’t let the blogs out there, and some are really beautiful and well-written, be the light unto your path.  Let God’s Word be your light.  Let the blog be a source of encouragement from a distant friend along the path…but never the source of light to your path.


Does this make sense?  I’m certainly NOT asking you to not read my blog anymore…that’s not my point at all.  :)   What I am “advising” is to be careful what you read.  I take the “you gotta prove it to me” point of view when I read other blogs (written by individuals that I do not know).  I am extremely critical at the onset.  Time will tell if a blogger is being authentic. 


You may, or may not, agree with this post.  That is okay.  You may, or may not, take my advice.  That is okay too.  The advice is free, and the writer is painfully human.  I think, to be completely honest, this advice is mostly for me.  A good reminder that no matter what I read, or where I look, the Bible should always be the first place I go for instruction. 


What say you?  Have you uncovered some messed up doctrine/theology in your web/blog searches?  Have you been brave enough to speak out when it might not be popular to do so?  Have you read something that left you feeling shamed rather than uplifted…did it confuse or distort the person of Jesus to you?  Let me know…I’m pretty sure we’ve all been there!

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8 Responses to “Friday’s Free Advice”

  1. Jen Braune says:

    Preach it.

  2. sister sheri says:

    Okay… I have to admit that it is killing me… what website did you go to that even brought the topic up? Is that gossiping if you tell me?

    I so agree that we should perhaps put warning labels on our blogs like… “I am a sinner saved by grace” or “I make mistakes, too” or “take it or leave it!!!!”

  3. Cat says:

    You go girl!!!

  4. Judy Hayburn says:

    Your advice was excellent, Amy. I agree that it can be very challening to deal with the perpetul amount of “bad counsel” that floats across the airwaves these days. That must be one of the “downsides” when entering the world of blogging. Now, more than ever, Christians need to be firmly rooted and grounded in the Word through involvement in a good church or receiving instruction from a Christian mentor who has some theological expertise. There are too many “self-appointed” theologians out there proclaiming their ideas about truth without the slightest idea of how “off” they are and how detrimental their theology may be. That’s how cults get started. Throughout the years teaching the course, Marriage and Family, I have learned that there are a number of different viewpoints with regard to the role of women in the Bible. The views range from Traditional, which interprets all the Scripture verses referring to women literally and believes women are inferior by design to men and men are to be the “head” (interpreted to mean the “boss”) of women, particularly in the marriage relationship. A woman’s primary role is homemaker and she cannot have any leadership position in a church, and certainly cannot teach men. The other end of the spectrum is the Egalitarian view. This view sees women as equal to men and co-partners in marriage. “Headship” is understood to be a servant leadership without the idea of being the boss. Egaitarians believe there are definite gender differences in the creation design, but these do not prevent a woman from exercising any of the supernatural gifts (1 Corinthians 12 and 14), the motivational gifts (Romans 12), and ministry gifts (Ephesians 4). Finally, there are at least three other viewpoints which fall somewhere in the middle (Male Leadership, Pluralistic, and Complementary). All of the theologians from each of these viewpoints are godly men and women who love God and desire to teach truth. They argue their cases with vigor and use Scripture to support them. As a church, we can argue about who is right and who is wrong till Jesus comes but I have come to the conclusion that everyone must hash this out for themselves. Every person will be judged according to their own belief–how well they lived their own Christian witness, and how well they obeyed Christ’s Law of Love. Every woman has been given the freedom to choose what is best for herself and what’s in her family’s best interest. I would like to suggest that women read good books on this topic from a variety of different viewpoints and then make their decision based on an open-minded approach to seeking the truth. I have two books that I would like to suggest to those women who would like to know what the Egalitarian theologians say about the role of women according to Scripture: 1) God’s Women, Then and Now, by Catherine Gill and Barbara Cavaness and 2) Beyond Sex Roles, by Gilbert Bilezikian. Both are easy to read and also give guidelines for how to interpret Scripture. The key to this debate is that we not judge one another and impose ones personal beliefs on others. Christ called us, as His Bride the Church, to love one another first and foremost. Romans 14 gives excellent guidelines on how we should get along together, especially when we dogmatically disagree about issues likes this. Paul told the Philippians “Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory, but with lowliness of mind, let each esteem others as better than yourself.” Beloved, let us love one another.

  5. Alyson says:

    Great thoughts, Amy! I, too, am deeply disturbed by what is being preached by these women. As a full-time working mom, I find it hard to swallow the fact that they are saying that I am out of God’s will for not being a homemaker who is raising my daughter to be a homemaker. Who are we to judge each other’s callings and giftings? That right there is unbiblical. My calling and gifting isn’t to stay home and be a homemaker. My calling is to be a woman who is out in the work force, mainly ministry settings, using the passion and talent that God has given me to touch the lives of others, all the while raising my daughter to be an independent, strong, passionate woman herself. To limit her to a “homemaker” role would be doing her a terrible injustice.

    I used to be the person who would look at full-time working moms and pity them, thinking that they weren’t giving their child the best. Then I WOKE UP!! I’ve even had friends tell me that my child wouldn’t feel as loved, and would be missing out on so much with me working. It’s ridiculous. I have so many problems with this nonsense they call”theology”.

    Yes, some women are called to stay at home and raise their children. They love it and thrive doing it. I have a friend who does a them with her kids each week. One week they did a penguins theme and they went to the zoo, got books from the library about penguins, and watched penguin movies. Fantastic, but not all women are called to do that. My daughter is a thriving, awesome little girl, regardless of it I’m at work or staying at home.

    I actually wrote a blog about it awhile back. It was published in our MOPS newsletter. You can check it out here

  6. Kristen says:

    Great advice and something we should all keep in mind as we read other blogs! As for women’s roles you just articulated so well what I couldn’t put into words to say!

  7. Suzanne says:

    I think I know exactly what you were reading, because I was reading it and having the same reaction. And in fact, the Bible verse used to back up this “theology” doesn’t sound remotely like it forbids women to work outside the home, rather it asks women to be industrious and not lounge around and, in modern terms, eat bon bons and watch soap operas (or surf the net) all day. And why, exactly, would it be a bad thing for a woman to gain a college education before she begins to her career in “homemaking”? Oooh, it gets me a little fired up just thinking about it!

  8. Amy says:

    I get fired up too, Suzanne, and I’m not one to get fired up very easily. :) I keep going back to God’s grace. He gives us freedom, but he also gives us his Holy Spirit as a guide…helping us to maneuver through that freedom, and make wise choices with our lives. Fear breeds extremes, and my gut tells me that much of what is being taught by this movement has been birthed from fear.

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