Whoosh! A Comment Tsunami!

A-comic-balloon-with-an-exclamation-mark-T-ShirtsA few days ago, my blog post (http://www.theheartofhannah.com/2015/02/02/a-stay-at-home-mom-five-hot-button-reasons/) was about the reasons I am, and love being a stay-at-home mom. Lots of you read and many commented and I am grateful for that. If I learned anything at all from this, it is that there is certainly a culture war going on about this subject. Whatever the outcome, the spoils of the war will go to or be taken from the children in our culture. Today I will share with you just a few of the comments from both perspectives. (Next up: Was the Proverbs 31 woman a career woman? I hope you can read that one, too!)

“Ugh. I thought the “Mommy Wars” were over. You made a choice; good for you. Other Christian women make a different choice; good for them. Stop trying to convince yourself that your choice is more “Godly.” Different things work for different families and it’s incredibly insulting for you to tell working women that they are blaspheming the word of God. If that is what you truly believe, fine, but keep it to yourself. You say you’re not trying to be judgmental but you’re still doing a pretty [word I don’t use-HG] good job of it. This whole post is smug and self-righteous whether you intended it to be or not. Basically, get over yourself. You’re not that special.” 

“Excellent post. For me, this job is sooooo much harder than I ever thought it would be. Sometimes do I think I’m not cut out for this? Yes. But, I know that this is where my children need me to be. It’s where I’ve always wanted to be and where God wants me to be. When I became a mother I had to learn to put my child’s needs ahead of my wants. It’s a hard job, but it’s so worthwhile.”  

“conservative evangelical Christian? Check. white middle class American woman? Check. Taking scripture out of context to prove your point and make other people feel inferior or less then you? Check. looking for an echo chamber of people who agree with you and not letting outside voices in to disagree or point out flaws in your otherwise perfect life? Check”

“A beautiful article. With some minor exceptions, before we decided to home school, I have been a SAHM for almost 23 years. My only full time job lasted 4 months because I just knew I was not where I needed to be, so I quit. I will never, ever, ever look back and wish I had spent more time “at work.”’

“Just read the comments:  

https://www.facebook.com/stuffchristianculturelikes/posts/10153692329013782

…Maybe you’ll learn that your God is bigger than you think and that what you so self-righteously proclaim is probably driving away more people from God than pulling them near Him. Oh, and get over yourself.”  

“I praise the Lord that you are wise beyond your years in knowing that this time will in fact be over in a flash! I am speechlessly thankful the Lord gave me an awesome man of God, allowed me to have my children, and to be able to stay home and to home school them. They grew up so quickly and left our nest. My baby boy is 21 today and my sweet girl is 22. They both love the Lord and they both are incredibly awesome adults – to God be all the glory! The goal was to be the example of Jesus and reflect that every day in my marriage and as a parent. You know – some days worked out better than others, but I kept the vision that I would in fact one day lay my head down at night after they were out of our home and KNOW that I did the very best I could and that I would have NO REGRETS. No, “what if’s”. And the Lord has allowed me that knowledge and that incredible peace. Thank you for your words. I want to encourage you that every single bit of it is worth it. God bless you and your sweet family!”

‘”I’m not writing this to be harsh or judgmental….”  Excuse me, but you said at the first of your list that you thought this was the biblical way. Whenever you proclaim something as biblical and imply that it is a sin to go against it, you are kinda being judgmental.”

“Being a mom is hard. I needed to read this today. Mine are 7 and 11 and I still need reminding of the true reason I am home and keep from getting caught up in what society thinks I should be doing. Thanks again.”

“after reading this, i am glad that i have abandoned the bible. anything that judges me so completely for making my own choice and not relying on words and men-shaped men to tell me how evil i am is something i think belongs in the trash.”

 “I greatly appreciate this article. My husband and I always knew I’d stay at home with the children. I don’t miss the almost 6 figure salary I could be making now. That salary won’t give me precious time with my children and husband. It won’t buy our way into heaven. I truly believe as you stated that God wants us at home teaching and training our children. It is so surprising the number of Christian women who don’t believe this. Unfortunately, I see their households and families suffer because of this. The money and time away from the family are not worth losing our children to the world. Thank you so much for writing this.”

 “these ideas somehow make it seem as though my personhood begins and ends with my submission to a husband person, with my being a mom, and nothing more. to want more is to be selfish and damn our entire household to some sort of spiritual hell. i am tired of carrying the life and spiritual safety of our entire family on my decisions. we each are people, we each have value. how that is expressed is between us, not some deity-shaped idea and a book of words.”

“After reading the other posts, I must add another thought. As a former worker-outside-the-home, I do not find this article to be any sort of attack. Also, I am saddened by some of the comments that, pardon the term, almost boast of how their homes are clean, kids are dressed, and they can even do other things. The whole point is to get our children to heaven. I mean this lovingly- if you choose to work outside the home, the goal would be to still make the time to train your child up in the Lord. Your home, clothing, and activities are irrelevant.” 

‘”The whole point is to get our children to heaven.” What a powerless god they serve, and how little they understand the theology of their own religion. Addiction is ugly, and they’re gonna seriously [mess] up their kids. No, I think the whole point is to raise the kids in a safe, loving environment…where they don’t ‘get to heaven’ anytime soon.”

“I’ve been a working mom. Busy focusing on a job and hustling around in the evenings to get bottles washed and packed back up for the next day when I would drop off MY child at daycare and cry myself to work. It was tough and I missed so much of John Michael’s first 2 years of life. I regret not working harder to find “things” to sacrifice to make a stay-at-home life work. I can’t go back and undo it or get that time back now. We decided when baby 2 came that I would stay at home. We began planning and sacrificing, finding ways to make a little here and there to help in any way. It was tough. Well, that’s an understatement. BUT, we have been living on 1 income for 2 years and our God has provided our EVERY NEED. As I look at my boys faces I sit back and say to myself “I’m thankful I gave up “X” for YOU!” I’ll never get the time back that I missed with JM. My heart really longs for that time often. I can’t go back for it. It’s too late. So for now I choose to make the most of everyday with my sweet boys, from the present onward! “ 

“After reading this, I am abundantly thankful I have walked away from religion; especially religion that tells says you’re a bad mother and living an un-biblical life if you work outside the home and don’t have a desire to fully stop. Also, what are single mothers supposed to do? How are they supposed to live “biblically” while staying fully at home and being the sole “breadwinner”? (IMO) To have that much pressure upon oneself simply to insure that you’re living according to g-d’s word would birth load of depression, stress, unworthiness, etc.”

 “Loved this. I’m hearing a lot about “choice” lately and doing what makes you happy (some people like to use the words “fulfilled” or “sane”) and I think it’s really sad. We shouldn’t make our choices based on what we think will make us happy (or fulfilled or sane). We need to base our choices on God’s Word alone. Something I’m SO glad Hannah found out much earlier than I did. It’s hard to express these feelings to people without making it sound like you are condemning them for their “choice” but I do think more moms need to be encouraged to make choices that line up with what God wants for us and not just what they think will fulfill them. One thing I’ve learned for sure in the 7 years I’ve been at home with my kids (and the 8 1/2 years of being a mom, 2 homeschooling) is that God uses motherhood to help sanctify us, He uses every bit of it. Every diaper change, every unwarranted temper tantrum, every spill, every scraped knee, every accident, every long long story, every Lego presentation, every late night feeding, everything, everything! And if you’re missing 3/4 of that time every day… You’re missing a lot.” 

“I love how she uses fake sweetness to judge and shame other mothers. Nice.”

 “I am not married or even out of school yet but I have had people pressuring me about being a working mom. Almost all my life I have wanted to be a mother and good wife, one who will teach her children about God’s word and help her husband to be a good Christian. I have never worried about money for as long as I can remember, I had always in my mind the thought that if we were faithful and good Christians the Lord would give us a way to obtain the things we needed. Your post really touched me. Many of the people around me don’t agree with my desire to be a stay at home mother, so all that you said has been very encouraging to me. I really appreciate your putting this post out.”

“Kinda concerned for that little guy. It’s not really healthy to grow up with someone hanging their entire existence and self-worth on your ability to prove they’re a good mom. Hint to hipster Christian mommy: you really need to back off a tiny bit.”

“We can try and believe that kids don’t need the same things they needed before America put women in the work place in huge numbers, but they still need the same things. I know that there are some who can work outside the home for a limited number of hours and perhaps still be keepers at home and Deut. 6 moms. I just do not personally see how a mother could ever choose to work full time, put the kids in day-care and still think she was giving the home all the spiritual benefits she could be giving it were she there more. That kind of thinking just has never made sense to me. If you chose to put only ten hours into your full time job, your boss would fire you or at least cut your wages because you can’t be as productive in ten hours as you can be in forty. I don’t get why we think that logic does not apply with the most important job. We can’t do the same thing with a few hours a week as we could with a larger quantity of time. That just has to be true.”

 Again, here are the two key passages:

“Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled.” -Titus 2:3-5

“Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.  And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.” -Deuteronomy 6:4-7



18 thoughts on “Whoosh! A Comment Tsunami!

  1. Hannah, did you not read any of my comments? You are teaching falsely regarding the scriptures. The Deuteronomy passage applies to PARENTS. Is your husband going to stay at home as well? Your application does not make sense. Your haughty attitude is doing tremendous damage. Look at those facebook posts. Do your elders know you are teaching this way on the internet? I will pray for you because I truly believe you are unwise and foolish.

  2. It’s great if you choose this kind of life for yourself; you are fortunate to have the option. It’s sad to the point of obscene that you would condemn any other women for making a different choice.

  3. Wow. Those are some interesting comments. People can be seriously hateful. It’s a shame so many missed the point of your article. What a blessing it is to be able to do what you’re doing! 🙂

  4. Wow! After reading the comments, I have to pray harder for our society. I have never felt slighted as a women in my service to the Lord. I did not see in any of the original comments that Hannah made that they were judgmental. In fact, if you read that into the original posts, it might have been something you brought to the table as you read that touched a nerve. It also saddens me that people are proud to walk away from religion. It says that Our Creator made rules and I will not keep them because it goes against what I think. It all comes down to submitting to authority. I do work outside of the home teaching at the private school my children attend. I was not offended in the least at what she stated in her post. I know that I am lucky that I am with my kids more than most working moms. I do know that no matter what I choose to do, my first role as assigned by the Creator of all is to take care of my children and husband. My husband and I are partners in our quest for raising Godly children and for serving God almighty the way He intended it. As I tell my children at school, when you become a Supreme Being and make a world, then you can make the rules you want to. Until then, have some respect for God, our Creator and Provider and do it His way. I promise the rewards will be so much greater than you can even fathom. Deep prayers for our society

  5. Lynn, There are still many elders who defend the Biblical role of women in the home. Whatever our roles in life may be, it is Biblically true that the primary role has to be the “oikuros” role–keeper at home, guide of the home, stayer at home, domestic. That doesn’t sound very “21st century”, but it is still very Biblical. I don’t think Hannah was saying anywhere in the original article that women can never do anything outside the home to earn any money. I believe she was stating that her choice is scripturally sanctioned and within the purview of “keeper at home,” so she is joyful in that role. (Thus, “reasons” that she does it.) She is simply, to the best of her ability, being what is prescribed in Titus 2. She stated that she did not see how the scenario she described, which we must admit is not so untypical, could possibly be an atmosphere where the Deuteronomy 6 kind of parenting is occurring. It is not mean or haughty to observe that. You observed things about homes in your congregation, as well. As for the admonition in Deuteronomy 6 being for parents, you are so correct in observing that. But if PARENTS are going to be teaching children while walking, standing, sitting, and going to bed, then one parent or the other must be with them during those times. That’s obvious. We also know from I Timothy 5:8 that the husband is to be the provider. Thus, the woman is instructed to be a “keeper at home, a domestic…” Within the two roles specifically prescribed in scripture, and working together as God planned, PARENTS can be “Deuteronomy six” parents. Christian parents have been doing it for centuries. It is just not as convenient in our culture to do it the way God prescribed. Many find themselves in situations where it will take time and effort and planning to return to this model, but we should be trying to raise our own children.

  6. It is funny you ladies talk about the bible but you only mention the passages that talk about women being this, vulnerable man worshiping being wearing an apron 24/7 but you don’t mention parts of the bible that says that it’s OK to sell your daughters as slaves and they have to please their owners, or that it is OK to rape a woman as long as you pay her family off afterwards and marry her and your punishment is to never divorce her. I know what you will say… “Oh, but that’s in the Old Testament.” Well, so is the passage about how God hates gays and every other hateful passage you guys use to bash people but you still use it. I guess just like every other passage of the bible, to “Christians” it only matters when it’s to be used against people . If we want to preach the bible, let’s preach it all. The good and the bad and whether one wants to admit it or not, the bible is full of violence and hate.

    Well, I guess when your husband is robbing people blind with fables of how God will murder you if you don’t do as the pastor tells you then you can afford to be a stay at home mom.

    I guess little missy hasn’t read those passages in the bible that talk about not being vain, since she not only wear makeup but also dyes her hair a color that The Lord Jesus didn’t intend her to have.

    Maybe she should also read the passage of 1 Timothy 2:12 that says “I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man;[a] she must be quiet.” So she should shhhhh her little rich, bored, spoiled housewife pie hole and not tell people how to live their lives because the bible also says that we should pray for sinners, not judge them.

    If you want to convert people to your religion or get them to see as you do, the way to do it is not to beat them with judgment and with your religious books, but to do it lovingly as your Jesus and lord tells you to but you fail to every single time!!!

    • I know Hannah has been reading the Bible her entire life and is familiar with its teachings from both the Old and New Testament. She has always been an example to me of humility and dedication to true Bible teaching. She would not ever wish to embarrass or hurt anyone by her posts here. Her desire is to help us think critically and honestly about the word of God.

      As for some of the “difficult” Bible passages you mention, yes, it can be hard for us to understand the context and reasoning at times, but if we prayerfully study the Scriptures, we see that God never contradicts Himself, and we can know that we can trust Him. It is vital for us all to make sure we are not singling out verses that seem harsh to us and dismissing spirituality altogether without taking time to carefully study in-depth with an open heart.

      I believe if we read Hannah’s posts non-defensively with an open heart, we can see she is being very loving. Not only that, but she studies diligently to make sure she is sharing truth with others to the best of her ability. She is a praying woman, too, and I am confident she asks God’s guidance as she studies Scripture and shares Bible teachings with us.

      Hannah, I want to thank you for the example you are to all of us Christian women, and for challenging us all to dig a little deeper!

      • “It is vital for us all to make sure we are not singling out verses that seem harsh to us and dismissing spirituality altogether without taking time to carefully study in-depth with an open heart.”

        It seems to me the ones who “study the bible” are the ones always singling out passages to judge others on their life styles. No one, other than “Christians” like Hannah can’t see that she is indeed being judgmental by saying women are to be submissive housewives and stay at home mothers. Not everyone can afford to be a stay at home mom and for anyone to judge someone as a mother based on whether they stay at home or go to work and pay the bills is very low to say the least.

        I am a working mom. A hard working mom who pays my own bills, supports my child and according to your beliefs am a dinner because I gave up on a husband and wasn’t submissive to his abusive ways and stood up for myself. I guess a woman is supposed to put up with anything right? Because she is a woman and the bible says she is a second class citizen.

        I like working hard and teaching my child to not depend on anyone to pay the bills or to marry early because she is a woman and religion says she is to be married, dependent on a man and to make sure he gets all his wants and wishes, like a spoiled little brat.

        For many years now women have been expected to be more mature because “boys will be boys” and to be submissive and not be sexy because men can’t control themselves. It’s the 21st century and it’s time these little boys who hide behind religion to put on some big boy pants and take responsibility for their actions.

        It is time women stop thinking we are second class cotiEns and are only supposed to cook and bake and clean and pop children out. We need to study more than just religion. I’m not some bitter feminist who thinks men should have no rights, I am just a human being who gives respect and expects it back not because I am a woman but because it is something you deserve as a human being.

        • You are right that there are lots of religious people who do just what you said. Sometimes Christians do single out passages and forget the rest of Scripture. And sometimes Christians do judge others in a way that is not aligned with biblical teaching. However, I don’t think that’s what Hannah is doing. We have to admit that no one in the blog-world has enough time or space on a blog to cover *every* single Bible topic out there. Hannah is simply sharing some Bible topics that are close to her heart, that she has studied carefully, in hopes that her studies will encourage others to dig deeper. As you can see from many other posts on her blog, she has studied all kinds of Bible teachings and does her best to share Truth. Hannah is not being judgmental—she is simply sharing Scripture and helping us understand what Scripture teaches. If we are offended by the Word of God, we need to look at our own hearts, not become angry at those who are trying to encourage us.

          I agree with you that not every single family situation allows a woman to stay home. I have a good friend (a single mother) who is working hard right now to get her degree in education to make money to raise her son. There’s no way she could stay home. And I admire her about as much as I could ever admire anyone! She’s making the best of her situation and caring for her son in the best way she possibly can. I personally do not know any Christians who would say she is sinning; she is responsibly making the best of her circumstance. Additionally, as Hannah has mentioned in her most recent post, many women who stay home also find ways to contribute to the family income. I don’t believe she is saying it is a sin to make money for your family, as it seems many readers have misinterpreted her as saying.

          It sounds like you are a very hard worker for your family, and I admire that. I know you want the best for your child, as any mother does. But God never calls women “second class citizens.” Remember that some of Jesus’ closest disciples were women, and they followed Him all the way to the cross, and they were among the first to visit His grave after He rose! You, as a woman, have *so much* value to God, and I am so sorry if people—especially Christians—have ever made you feel that you are not valuable. I know it was not Hannah’s intention to make you feel in any way inferior.

          • It isn’t just Christians now a days who make women feel like they are second class citizens. It is also the church and the bible with many of it’s passages that do that. The initial post by Hannah is that a woman’s place is at home, not the work place there was no misinterpretation there.

  7. “my blog post was about the reasons I am, and love being a stay-at-home mom. ”

    No, it wasn’t. If it had been, not a single person would have likely been offended by it.

    The offense came because you were declaring that YOUR way of doing things was the only Biblical way and that everyone else was a heretic.

    You are either being dishonest with yourself, or you are a terrible communicator and your real down-the-nose feelings about those *other moms* leaked out as a result.

    • She is being VERY dishonest. I called her out in a previous post about working moms and she said she respects working moms and especially single ones but yet here we are… Still same thing in another post. She’s he typical Christian hypocrite. Would be funny if she herself ended up having to go to work to support her family.

  8. as a working mom, Hannah, let me just say that you are welcome to save your literal grieving for someone else, preferably someone who actually needs it.

  9. Another post by a spoiled and bored housewife who is privileged to stay home because her husband robs people of 10% and more of their earnings with promises of heaven and eternal happiness while they live in poverty and he lives in wealth with his spoiled wife. I wonder if the single moms or working moms who go to his church know how you feel about working moms. in your last post I commented that you were bashing on single moms who have to work and moms who gave to work to help their husbands pay the bills and you said that’s not what you were doing, yet, here you are again, with another post about how you are a better mother because you can stay homesnd take care of your kids.

    I feel bad for your kids growing up with a judge mental fake Christian such as yourself, teaching them the bible the way only fanatics follow. It’s a sad thing when people don’t know how to balance and read things properly. Fanatical Christians are no different than extremist Muslims doing damage because their religious books say so. Remember, Jesus said to not judge. You keep on judging working mothers all you want, I would rather be living off of my own money than the money my husband steals from people by promising then heaven and earth if they give away their earnings. People like you and your husband are everything that’s wrong with the world, defrauding people and stealing their money because you don’t want to work. Doesn’t the bible say that God is against lazy people? Get off your behind and go get s life. You clearly have too much time in your hands.

    • I wonder if any of the single mothers you claim to be friends with actually know what you say about single/working mothers and working mothers in general. Grow up little girl, not everyone chooses to marry at an early age of marry a con artist.

  10. I couldn’t stop thinking about this after I read it last night. It has been on my heart all morning. I felt that I had to come add my 2 cents as well. 🙂 When I read Hannah’s first post I saw nothing degrading, haughty, unscriptural, or wrong. Hannah was merely pointing out that the New Testament does indeed leave us women the example of being the keepers at home. I saw plenty of haughty & degrading comments though. The Old Testament was written for our learning, but we aren’t bound by it’s laws. The New Testament teaches us how we should live our lives & we should all try the best we can to follow the examples left to us. Even though she “stepped on my toes”, I appreciated the fact that she pointed out that we could do with less materialistic things in order to make it work for us to stay at home. She plainly stated that she wasn’t talking to the moms that “HAD” to work. Those moms *have* to do it all, provide & keep the home. She was talking to those of us who have a husband that can provide. If you are in a Christian home then your Christian husband, who is your spiritual leader, shouldn’t have any problem with you wanting to fulfill your role as a keeper at home. It’s those who don’t *want* it or don’t think they “could” that get offended or defensive over the idea. Hannah’s was very accurate in her statement, “Our society has convinced so many women that being a stay-at-home-mom means you aren’t a real woman—that you aren’t reaching your full potential if you allow yourself to “waste your talents and abilities by keeping yourself locked away from the world at home.” Being a keeper at home isn’t degrading or boring, it is fulfilling God’s call to women. We also aren’t locked away but free to teach our children, free to get out & visit the shut in, free to volunteer our time serving the Lord, free to do whatever God leads us to do during “working hours”. The Proverbs 31 woman was indeed a keeper of her home AND she helped the needy. A lot of the things she did, she did to keep her husband from taking away from his important position to do…which by the way, in this case, he was a KING, therefore the wife we read about was to be a QUEEN ! She was to be this amazing keeper of their home & her husband needed to trust her to make good decisions regarding their family. Ironically all the things Hannah pointed out about Etsy, monogramming, etc, are spot on with what the Proverbs 31 woman did. She *made* things & took them to the marketplace to sell them. Everything she did, was done at home! I recommend you reading “The Treasured Woman” by Christa Bryant. She does a wonderful job of showing us how we too can be like the Proverbs 31 woman today. All in all though, we all should be striving to keep our homes, teach our children & live the way God asks us to in His Word. One day we will all answer for the way we have done just that. I don’t want to take any chances on Him asking me, “Why “COULDN’T you…..?”. You fill in the blank.

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