Recently I spoke at a ladies’ retreat and made this point: “You older ladies (we’re all older to someone) are teaching the younger ones whether it’s deliberate or not”.
Question is, what are we teaching? If you believe the maxim, “As the church, so goes the nation“, we have a heavy responsibility and we’re largely to blame for our own decline.
But stop, look and listen. Again I said to those ladies last weekend, “Women hold a tremendous amount of power to change things. Why do you think Satan approached the woman in the garden?”
What is being passed down, woman to woman in our culture, in the church? I submit to you that the message is often inaccurate and powerfully destructive. Women, what you believe is what you teach; and what you teach helps shape the next generation.
If our standard isn’t the Word of God, we are allies with the father of lies.
First, we need a return to teaching women to love their husbands, not compete with them, or subtly treat them as inferior. The teaching is in the jokes, the sly comments, the subtle nuances. We need bold women, to look younger women lovingly in the eyes, and give them hope for their marriages, the stuff that joyful homes are made of. We need them passing on the strength and dignity of a godly helper, of the beauty of a woman who is for her husband, flaws and all.
We need women teaching women what the Bible says about children. That God “desires godly offspring”, that raising children is the first line of the Great Commission work. We need to understand how marriage is meant to reflect the church, and that as the church is expected to naturally be fruitful and make disciples, so is marriage. Shame on us, for a generation of Christian women who have taught that children are a costly burden to be “put up with” and not a heritage from the Lord, given for us to steward. Shame on us for treating motherhood like some side job instead of the powerful, constant, eternal work of shaping the next generation.
To love our children is to give all we have to make them soldiers of Christ. It’s not to spoil them or live out for them a worldview that emphasizes self-gratification. We are sojourners here, given one shot to “set up for ourselves treasures in Heaven”.
Let’s be so careful, ladies, whatever stage of life you’re in, as you are teachers of the women behind you, to exemplify truth and to embrace the power we’ve been given to change the world.