Sunday, May 11, 2014

Calm

Dear brothers and sisters, when I was with you I couldn’t talk to you as I would to spiritual people. I had to talk as though you belonged to this world or as though you were infants in the Christian life. I had to feed you with milk, not with solid food, because you weren’t ready for anything stronger. And you still aren’t ready, for you are still controlled by your sinful nature. You are jealous of one another and quarrel with each other. Doesn’t that prove you are controlled by your sinful nature? Aren’t you living like people of the world? When one of you says, “I am a follower of Paul,” and another says, “I follow Apollos,” aren’t you acting just like people of the world?
 After all, who is Apollos? Who is Paul? We are only God’s servants through whom you believed the Good News. Each of us did the work the Lord gave us. I planted the seed in your hearts, and Apollos watered it, but it was God who made it grow. It’s not important who does the planting, or who does the watering. What’s important is that God makes the seed grow. The one who plants and the one who waters work together with the same purpose. And both will be rewarded for their own hard work. For we are both God’s workers. And you are God’s field. You are God’s building.
Because of God’s grace to me, I have laid the foundation like an expert builder. Now others are building on it. But whoever is building on this foundation must be very careful. For no one can lay any foundation other than the one we already have—Jesus Christ. - 1 Corinthians 3:1-11

My daughters, I pray that you will read these verses again and again each and every time you are confused and searching for Truth. You will hear and read so many conflicting things. It's all a distraction. You are a Christian who has a Bible and the ability to pray. Know yourself. Know when you are seeking Truth or when you are seeking to justify rebellion.  

In your Mother's Day card to me today you wrote about how I have been packing our belongings to move once again. You stated: "If you were any other mom, you would be freaking out and stressed, but you're not. You're calm." 

It is my heart's desire for you to know, for yourself, the calm that I have today. I'm so encouraged that you recognize it. While I can do many things in showing you the blessings of being calm, I can not give calmness to you. It is something you will gain by a steadfast reliance on Truth and obedience to God, you will receive it as a blessing for having turned away from rebellion and abiding in God's very simple guidance for you as a wife and mother. 

Pay no attention to those who will label you as followers of this or of that. Their nitpicks and judgements are the works of idle hands and covetous hearts. I continue to learn new terms for how the world tries to define a life like mine. Rest assured, I belong to no group, no movement, or persuasion. I am a Christian. I pray, I read the Bible, I repent of my sins, and I take the very personal instruction God gave to wives very seriously. I am not confused by that instruction, it is written quite clearly. I've said before, perhaps I am just stupid enough to believe the Words that are written on the pages of my Bible. However, with that stupidity comes the calm. And know this, it is that calm that women covet. 

I've learned a new derogatory term for how I live my life: patriocentricity (father/husband worship). It is spoken of by women who have exceptions for how they submit to their husbands. In this case, in order to not be patriocentric, a wife's husband must be in submission to a greater authority (of course this is overseen and judged by who else - the wife!). That is beyond my pay grade, so to speak. Your father is quite capable of reading the Bible. You'll find in reading the Bible that it is prudent to seek wisdom. In seeking wisdom, you will listen to the words of others. You will check those words with the Bible and if they are biblically sound, you will accept them as learning. I am confident your father does this. But it has nothing to do with my submission to him. Also, do not be confused, I do not worship your father. I obey God. Jesus told us in John 14:15 "If you love me, keep my commandments." It is very simple. I love Jesus. And I, as a wife, have very specific commands from God:
Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything. - Ephesians 5:22-24
How awesome is it that God provided for us, as wives, a special message? He considered us, He loves us, and because of that, He told us how we can obey Him. He didn't make it confusing or hard to follow. In fact, to avoid confusion a very important word was used: everything. 

Now, you will know when you have fully embraced this command. You will know when you have stopped rebelling against that very important word. You will know when you have an unshakable resolve to obey God despite any and all of the words you get labeled by those who are still in rebellion.

You will be calm.

When you become a wife, it will be to your husband that you submit. Because darlings, if you'll notice, the words do not say "...in everything that is like your father." No, it says "in everything." Your husband will likely be very close with your father, but they will not always be in agreement. As you seek advice from me, you will never hear me say anything other than, "obey God by submitting to your husband in everything." I will not say anything other than this because I know something that is so very important - the way for you to become calm.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Husband or draft horse?

It was this time of year, nine years ago, when my thirty-four-year-old husband sat down with me and said, "The Army has missed its recruiting goals again, I'm going to enlist."

It was a statement, not a question. My opinion and/or input was not what he was seeking, he was informing me on what was going to happen.

Now that the Army will no longer be his career, he is free to pursue whatever he desires once again. He was contemplating something the other day and I asked him, "It's not me that is holding you back from this decision, is it?" He said it wasn't, but I reminded myself to get my thoughts into check and root out any sense of expectation when it comes to his decisions.

Our role as help meet is designed to be as flexible as is needed to help our husbands in whatever endeavor they pursue. If a former endeavor provided excess and abundance, we, as wives, need to make sure those pleasantries do not turn into expectations that influence our husbands to maintain where they are instead of following their desires, or even their calling, to change what they are doing.

My thoughts on the subject were confirmed again when I was reading through the comment section of the Just Four Guys blog. Go read it for context if you'd like, it's an excellent thread for women to read. I'll just be highlighting some snippets of what commenter BuenaVista had to say:

Well, as a former drafthorse, who got up at 3 a.m. so I could do my share of the housework, run 5 miles so I look like a 20 year-old, and write two poems, before going to work for 14 hours/day, because that’s what constituted a manly-man to the ex-, at least I wasn’t a gelding like this dude. Does he do the toilets, too? Get up earlier, pal. You can always get up earlier. I hope you’re doing all the cooking on the weekends.
Sure, go ahead. Throw away any aspect of your integrity so that you can do shuttle runs on the weekend in a minivan, after investing the entirety of your existence M-F in supporting this woman and her precious children. The wife will say you’re magnificent — yay — because that’s less revealing than reality. Reality is that he’ll blink and be dead, or blink and be divorced. Reality is that she and her friends gather and cluck “Farm him out, honey; farm him out.” Reality is that a housewife has four hours per day of labor, maybe six, but this one has her man running errands all weekend in a piece-of-shit family breadbox because, well, it’s just so important to share the load.
Perhaps they will bury him in his minivan, with a few Dad of the Year! t-shirts thrown in.
If this woman had gotten anything out of her claimed redpill insights, her guy would have a life other than one that exclusively celebrates her leisure. Men: harness up. We’ll praise you!...
More reflections on the OP and why I find it so alarming, especially here of all places. No anecdotes, but fair warning for mixed metaphors, Blade Runner, quantitative finance, and aviation references, not to mention invective informed by experience:
Let’s amplify and exaggerate: Our fair correspondent here could be married to a independently wealthy Channing Tatum, sensitive beyond measure (say he has a book deal to update treacle like Kahlil Gibran) and brilliant beyond comprehension (when not cleaning his Vepr he writes monographs on public choice theory), teaches hot university babes Miesian economics … oh, we actually know someone like that, oops. Well. Anyway, let us now add the wedding cake and overlay some Ward Cleaver, and watch him trade out his TVR for a minivan and the infinitude of striving that is the Honey-Do List Lifestyle. He is now defined solely by what he brings, does, and provides. It doesn’t matter how pretty the harness, it’s still a harness.
A drafthorse is an impressive figure: we all admire him. Until, and there’s always an until, he can’t, or won’t, pull the wagon; or until, sight unseen to our plodding hero-horse, another prancing drafthorse or quarterhorse or closing-hour unicorn horse enters stage left. Then, as we know, Davey Drafthorse gets a bucket of seat oats, and a .308 to the brain.
It’s important to realize that our Fair Correspondent has found the perfect man. That perfect man — and none of us will ever walk the earth as either the perfect greater beta or sun-kissed maximal alpha — exists *at the pleasure, at the whim* of Fair Correspondent. His emotional life, and wholesale aspects of his economic life, *hang by a thread.* Should she change her mind about his utility, for it is utility that makes him Maximal Man, he’s now just another disoriented loser, alien to his children, to himself, to his potential, to his autonomy. And the only answer that provides any comfort whatsoever to this bleak, factual, 40-50% probability is: NAWALT.
Really? We’re going to say this is good enough? NAWALT? Because some chick drops props on a blog for men about how, really, men-in-minivans are just da bomb?
The described husband here appears to exist in middle-manager land (their resources provide a tenuous middle-income lifestyle). He could — nay, he *will* — eventually get canned; he could get sick, physically or emotionally; he could fall off the marriage chastity wagon, because unlike his spouse he thinks sex is in fact a very big deal, and particularly so in monogamy; he could simply decide that no, he’s not getting in harness today, he’s going to rewrite his senior thesis and family income this year is going to be 3% of last year’s, so deal with it.
There is an implied contract in all of monogamy, and that contract never includes the words, “Honey, I know that we have enjoyed two decades of equilibrium, but, you know, this new thing is really important to me and I’m going to see it through. This is my moment.” At that moment he’s in breach. Good luck, Davey Drafthorse. Suzy Homemaker holds the reins.
What then? Boom. She points to the contract: “Show me where your agency is permitted, absent, in my sole discretion, I deem it reasonable?” He’s out and the State drops an Enforcement Action on his ass. The choices then, for Davey Drafthorse, are obliteration or massive self-reconstruction. He will need to reinvent himself after 20 years of relentless, habitual nurturing and provisioning. He will need to do so with no support from his friends of the past 20 years, who instead look the other way rather than, themselves, stare at the smoking crater that is this man’s blasted hopes and relationship equity. He will be erased, overnight, by everyone whose social access to him (this would be everyone) was managed by his ex-wife; overnight, his despairing children will (out of desperation to survive emotionally) place him on the shelf with the other clever, maybe charming, irrelevant knickknacks that we accumulate in life. Overnight his highest-and-best use to his children will be to become the best distant uncle a child can have, the kind of uncle whose value can be easily measured: How often can he reload their debit cards? Overnight he’s a security in default, all of his lines of emotional and financial credit closed. For he’s not a man, it turns out, at all; he’s a marriage market replicant experiencing “retirement.” Those 20 years? It turns out that his memories are, overnight, merely programmed impulses designed to make him feel whole within the perfect world his ex-wife desired; it turns out that he’s been dreaming of electric sheep. He stumbles about, reaching for the photographs that documented his entire adult and parental life: Suzy Homemaker already removed them on the court-ordered stripping of the household. Simple artifacts, these photographs, like every other pretty lie, are gone.
Alternatively, he could be permitted his autonomous dreams, his agency, and his emotional distinctiveness. If you want a leading indicator of relationship success, it would be some acknowledgment of a committed man’s legitimacy in autonomy. Find some, for me, in the contributor’s self-aggrandizing paen to servile masculinity.
So, recovery. To recover some modest integrity, a shadow of his potential self at 25, he will be condemned to a life of solitary effectiveness: Decker, best in “love”, only capable of “love”, with a replicant like himself. “Love”, now properly seen for the fancy tissue paper that wrapped up the sum of his investment in a woman — who here celebrates her marionette husband, provided he doesn’t hang himself in her piano-wire strings as he contorts himself left-and-right at her fingertip command — is just more tissue paper thrown on the fire now that Christmas has passed. His only freedom, now, is in his solitary awareness that when they say it’s love, it looks like a business; and when he acts like it’s a business, he’s shamed for not realizing it’s love.[...]

[...]Don’t believe me? The other blog had a thread last spring in which the subject of marital infidelity came up. The proprietor, who celebrates her marriage to the perfect greater beta as the model for all the young girls, noted: “If he cheats, I will hire the nastiest divorce lawyer in town and take him apart piece by piece.” That is the piano-wire thread that all men must either love, or differently manage.

As your husband's help meet, does he have the ability to say, “Honey, I know that we have enjoyed two decades of equilibrium, but, you know, this new thing is really important to me and I’m going to see it through. This is my moment.” and have not only your full support but your...help?

Have you learned yet to go to God to rid yourself of fear, expectation, entitlement?  

Are you making sure that in no way is your husband in a harness "defined solely by what he brings, does, and provides."


 "If you want a leading indicator of relationship success, it would be some acknowledgment of a committed man’s legitimacy in autonomy."

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

No ability to blush

While driving out of town on Saturday, RLB and I stopped at a McDonald's for lunch. The booth we sat in was right behind a young millennial and her grandmother. The young gal looked to be between eighteen and twenty and Grandma looked like she was in her eighties.

Perhaps Grandma was hard of hearing, though we couldn't hear her end of the conversation, but Miss Thang was talking very loudly. For the next fifteen minutes we got to listen to a disheartening display of the inability to blush.

Miss Thang was telling Grandma all of her woes. Mom was requiring her to pay $150 a month rent!:

"No, I don't think she's lonely, Grandma, she just needs my money.  I'm not there 90% of the time, I'm always at Matt's, so basically I'm paying all that money for storage."

"Her health insurance sucks Grandma, I'm not going to be able to keep my doctor. It's ridiculous, I wanna stay at that clinic, I wanna keep that doctor, I wanna keep the dentist I have now."

"Yes, I love this doctor, he is so thorough, he checks my IUD every time I go in."

"Do you know what an IUD is Grandma?"

There was more. So much more.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Back to the basics - Solipsism

While contemplating the examples from my life when I was oblivious to my own solipsism, I remembered something my ex boyfriend would say to me when we were fighting: "It's just me, me, me, me, me, bucket of shit, and then you."

Sadly, that is the truth of our unexamined lives, isn't it ladies? Is it a feature or a flaw? Is there a survival element to our tendency to be solipsistic? Perhaps; however we really need to be aware of it and the impact it has on our relationships.

Here's a facepalm worthy meme that I've seen recently:


Oh, Snap! You Go Girl!

Think of some ways that you can recognize it in your own life. When someone is talking to you, do you listen to them or is your mind immediately searching for how this pertains to you? Do you get the urge to say such things as: "You think that's bad, listen to this..." Is your experience, be it worse, better, more interesting, etc. the only thing you can think about?

We can't deny that our experiences form our opinions but we can make an attempt to accept that our experiences and perceptions are not universal. We might actually be able to conclude that in some cases, our experience and our perceptions are an anomaly.

While solipsism reaches beyond mere selfishness, denial of its existence and refusing to deliberately change the way we think will lead to very outward displays of selfishness, like the meme above.

There is a mighty enemy that does not want you to come out of your denial. He does not want you to change the way you view life. He wants you thinking of your self only. Think of this quote by Eckhart Tolle: "The power is in you. The answer is in you. And you are the answer to all your searches: you are the goal. You are the answer. It's never outside."

Women, in particular, are susceptible to believing these lies. The enemy of your soul ladies, knows that you are a very easy target to distract away from Truth using this type of nonsense. Guard yourself from it. Immerse yourself in the Words of Truth so that you will reject this evil. Selfishness and self absorption are insatiable sins. The expressions of these sins grow ever more grotesque until finally the woman is completely incapable of seeing beyond herself. 

Solipsism and submission to our husbands can not exist at the same time within us. If we go through the motions of submission yet maintain a solipsistic outlook, we are not in submission and therefore not obedient to God. Submission requires that we view life through our husband's lens so that we may know him well. In order to be his help meet, we must know his needs and his perspective. To respect him at all times, we must deliberately repent of solipsism and selfishness and come in to unity with him.

The power is not in you, it is in prayer. The answer is not in you, it is in the Word. You are not the goal, God's will is. You are not the answer, God is. A life well lived is always lived outside of ourselves.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

World's Toughest Job? No, no it's not.



I woke up at 6:00 AM as I usually do on a Tuesday morning. I made a cup of coffee, let the dogs out of their kennels, fed them and took them outside. Next I packed my husband's lunch: ham, roast beef, bacon and cheese sandwich, some sliced summer sausage and cheese, a couple baggies of chips, water, iced tea, and a couple energy drinks, an energy bar, and some chocolate.

At 6:30 I brought him a glass of milk, turned on his bedside lamp, and said "good morning." I returned to the kitchen to make my children's lunches. At 7:00 I made sure my husband was awake and up and moving. He left for work at 7:15. The kids were up and eating breakfast, ready for their day of school.

I sat down at my desk around 8:00 AM and read on the computer for an hour: my favorite blogs, Facebook, and the Bible, while drinking more coffee. At 9:00 I got changed and ready to go to the gym. By 12:00 I was back at home planning supper. I took the dogs outside again. I ate lunch. I took a shower, made a couple phone calls and packed a couple of boxes (we're moving into my dream house that my husband is buying in a few weeks). I sat at my desk again, read and answered a couple of emails, called the mechanic to schedule some work done on the truck, did my daily check of bank accounts, read the news headlines, and bought a new blouse online for an upcoming wedding we're attending. I texted the personal trainer and scheduled our meeting for Friday. Back in the kitchen, I started preparing supper and added needed items to the grocery list for my weekly shopping trip. My daughters joined me and we discussed all of the events of their day.

I greeted my husband when he arrived home from work, and served supper shortly after. As a family we sat in the living room and talked about each others' day. Went over school work, grades, what's upcoming in their sports, we talked about life and politics. RLB led a fantastic discussion about living in a secular world as a Christian and how best to do it. A baseball game was on the television in the background and intermittently we talked about the game. Our children concluded their nightly routines and went to bed. RLB and I talked for another hour before heading to bed ourselves.

This morning (Wednesday), my day started exactly as it did on Tuesday. Then I watched this video.

I hope I'm not the only SAHM who watched this video and thought, "Oh, please" while considering all that went on in my husband's day and everything he did to provide the lifestyle I have. Sure, my life was busier when the children were smaller. My life was busier when the dogs were puppies. My life is busier when it's gardening season. But none of that even comes close to what I have seen my husband do over the course of the last 18 years that allows for me to, yet again, be sitting at this desk writing a post. A post I hope my daughters read should they ever feel the need to embellish the difficulties of being a mother. It is a very important job, being a help meet, being a mother, and taking care of the needs of a household. But it is not, by any stretch of the imagination, the "World's Toughest Job." 

Friday, April 11, 2014

Accept it girls, you're going to lose. Now quit being so stupid.


Boys are stronger than girls.

Girls are not given their due out of boys' natural inclination to behave honorably (an inclination very few girls naturally possess). When a girl abuses a boy's mercy long enough, she should be told to be prepared for the consequences. 

At the end of this video, the boy asks if the girl is okay. It's likely he asked this because he feared the consequences of having physically hurt her. A fear that didn't even cross her mind. 

Girls should be reminded swiftly that this behavior will not be tolerated in our culture. It should be made painfully clear to them that it is savage. 

How sad is it that we now have to educate girls about the natural respect they need to have for boys? That if left uneducated about it, they are literally stupid enough to believe they won't lose a physical altercation. 

Girls, don't ever hit a boy. 

Women, don't ever hit a man. 

Update:  Another stupid woman

Friday, March 14, 2014

I gave her to you

We watch the television show, Parenthood, on a regular basis. I appreciate the show for the writers' willingness to showcase all the challenges that are real and present today in our society. It's a drama and skews fanciful but on many occasions even the secular get it right. Truth is Truth no matter what, and I can't help but believe the popularity of this show is because of the Truth this family stumbles across, regardless their godless perspective.

One of the story lines is a daughter, Julia, and her husband who are struggling in their marriage. Some background, he was a stay at home dad and she was a lawyer. Being desperate to have another child and being unable to conceive, they adopt an older boy. The husband, Joel, goes back to work in his construction company and she comes home. There remains distance between them as is common in marriages today, their parenting sucks, their marriage sucks, and they keep going down their her own selfish path. Julia creates a way too comfortable relationship with a man whose child goes to her daughter's school. This part is a bit unrealistic, the man is a soft Beta going through a divorce. Her attraction to him makes no sense, when you understand reality. Regardless, she lets things get too close, the Beta dude kisses her and she doesn't pull away in revulsion as she should, being a married woman. She confesses the incident to her husband. He reacts as a man would - utter disgust, betrayal, repulsion, and moves out of the home.

It's painful to watch this unfold. The writers have made sure the children of this couple say and ask the exact things that children of separated parents will say and ask. They are headed for divorce, no question about it. If it weren't for those children, we would all cheer Joel on: "divorce the ungrateful bitch! She's a clueless, selfish woman who lacks loyalty and restraint." Well, that is if we weren't civilizationalists and Christians to boot.

Julia is remorseful, to an extent, but she wants her marriage to work. It's unclear what she's willing to repent of. Sometimes she's written as the victim and others the wondering, clueless, adulteress. What is clear, is the patriarch of the family, Zeek Braverman (played by Craig T. Nelson), loves his family and believes in this marriage. He's not a Christian man yet upholds some Christian tradition. This last episode he goes to see Joel for the first time since Joel and Julia's separation. Joel and Julia were going to be the God parents of the latest grandchild born to Zeek. Due to their separation, Joel has been replaced by a different uncle as Godfather and has decided he won't be attending the baptism. Zeek goes to see Joel to encourage him to attend. There isn't a clip of it available and this link to the full episode won't work after a few weeks, but if you're interested, the exchange happens at the 35:00 mark: Limbo
Zeek:  Let me ask you something... What the hell are you doing?
Joel: I'm trying to figure things out.
Zeek: Well, let me ask you a favor then, could you try harder?  Hey look, I know that you guys are going through some stuff and I know that you're pissed at Julia. I don't know the circumstances, I don't know that's really important
Joel: It's pretty important
Zeek: Okay, you guys have had it pretty good, and now you're going through a rough patch and you're going to give up? Come on. Look, when I walked Julia down the aisle, I gave her to you and I was so proud and I was so sure, and still am, of the man that I gave her to. I know what kind of a guy he is. I made a vow to support you and her in that marriage, I took you on as a son...
"I gave her to you."

Well, isn't that nice and traditional. Unfortunately what Zeek gave Joel was a feminist woman steeped in equality and careerism. Everything about her life has been about her. Joel has played the dutiful husband meeting all of her wants, dreams, and desires. And, as soon as princess was feeling a bit unhappy, she found solace with another man.

What is playing out in this show is precisely what I envision when I read countless stories of men who have either gone through divorce or are staying in the marriage for the children. They're good guys, hard workers, will do what needs to be done in order to make their bride happy.

But their bride is never happy.

ZEEK! Why is your daughter never happy? Why is your daughter never grateful? Appreciative? Loyal? Honorable? Virtuous? Quiet? gentle? submissive?

Though Zeek is a fictional character, he represents countless fathers in our society who have brought up their daughters in today's feminist culture, believing that they will be able to have it all. They work hard to make sure their daughters will be able to pursue their dreams careers. They pay for expensive college tuition, encouraging her to "find herself" outside of traditional roles. Yet they expect their son-in-laws to tow the traditional feminist line. "Good men don't quit on their families" (even when their wives are being self centered, solipsistic, irrational brats who are not loyal, void of honor, disrespectful and uncommitted to their marriages).

The first place Zeek should have gone was to his daughter. "I'm sorry, honey, I did a terrible disservice to you. I did not tell you about the nature of men. I failed to inform you of what happens in the heart of a man when his wife betrays him with another man. I failed to tell you how important those vows you took are. They meant something to him. He believed you. I supported your marriage because I know the kind of man he is. He's honest, loyal, and hard working. He embodies everything I wanted my little girl to marry. But I failed him. I abdicated my responsibility in raising my daughter to be a wife worthy of this good man. I raised you, my daughter, to be a self serving woman who puts her own wants and desires before her husband's and out of line with what God has instructed for wives. It's not the natural order of things as is evident in your failing marriage and broken family."