Working at home

One of the Christian Women’s groups I belong to was having a discussion about working at home versus working out of the home and why mothers should be working at all. I immediately thought of the study I’ve been doing here and posted the following comment.

I encourage you all to go back and read Proverbs 31, particularly from verse
13 onwards. The wife/mother did go out and work and came back and did things around the home. The Proverbs 31 woman provided for her home both financially and with her own hands, she cooked (and had help), she wove, she sold, she bought, she owned land, she worked the land, she got up early and stayed up late, she dealt with merchants and clothed the family, she watched over the affairs of the household and was not idle.

Now, I don’t think for a minute that any woman I know (including all of you) is idle – life is sooooooo busy these days. But we need to recognise that the wife who stayed home and did not work has only been a recent generational thing – women have nearly always been involved in helping with the income and working in some way, and in the past she had her children with her. If working on the land the kids were there too. Or she got help to look after her children (often there was help in the home) whilst she went out and travelled, bargained, bartered, bought and sold.

Don’t forget that families were extended in those days with grandparents, aunts, uncles and others frequently in the same household, just next door or on the same land. Often this was the ‘help’ that provided care for the children when it was needed. Today this is all too frequently not the case with families becoming ‘satellites’ and isolated from the rest of their relatives, living far away, interstate (as is the case for us) or overseas. And for many others, the single parent family is the ‘norm’ with no family members close by to assist.

With respect to the husband/man not being willing to support the household – this is not true in most cases. As was said, society has recreated the situation where it is necessary that women go out to work and with how things have developed through the industrial age and now technologically, it means that women no longer go and work out on the land, sew and weave, etc to earn an income, but instead they go out to an office job, a factory job, a job in a hospital or other helps type organisation, and so on. The nature of the work done and how the income is earnt has changed.

My husband earns a good income and we may have been able to stretch his income for most things but we wouldn’t have been able to buy the home we have (and now own), and there are other things we would have had to go without if I hadn’t worked. I just thank God that He allowed me to do my work at home – which so many mothers want to do today, so that once again, the mother and the children are together whilst she works – just as it was in years gone by, except that the grandparents and other extended family members are generally no longer present in the home. Whilst for some it may be a case of ‘keeping up with the joneses’ for many it is purely a case of survival and very necessary.

What are your thoughts about women/mothers going out to work, versus, staying in the home with the children? KMT

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6 Responses to “Working at home”

  1. Amaranth Says:

    I am not yet a mother, but I’m working on it! :o)

    Should I be blessed with childred, I plan to stay home with them. If I was able to find a job that I could do from home, or with my children in attendance, I would do it. However, if I was required to leave my children with someone else while I was working, I would not be willing to work. I don’t like the idea of someone else instilling their morals and values on my children. It might be a bit selfish, or prideful, but I want to be the one to raise my children. I believe that children need their own families (esp. in the first several years) and that they do not deserve to be sent to “day orphanages.” If you must submit your children to daycare in order to survive by society’s standards, maybe you need to rethink your decision to have children, or rethink the necessity of conforming to the standard.

  2. proverbs31 Says:

    Unfortunately Amaranth, things change very quickly and good intentions can be totally disrupted and turned around. People’s financial situations change, cost of housing goes up, jobs can be lost or changed, pay rates change, all sorts of things can influence the decisions that need to be made.

    I wanted to be home for my girls too, and was for a period of time, before having to go back out to work to support my family when my youngest was only 6 months old – the others had benefitted from me being home for a few years. But, when the opportunity arose for me to work at home, I grabbed it and MADE it work because I didn’t want to have to go back out to a job.

    So, the girls have grown up with me at home for the past 12 years, here during their teenage years, which is another very important time for them. And I thank God that I was able to do that.

  3. Sylvie Says:

    I choose to stay at home with my children now. Last year, when both of the boys were in school, it was necessary for me to work for pay in order to cover the cost of their tuition. I was miserable. I felt that I didn’t have that same connection with them, my focus was split and not on them nor my husband. I was exhausted, the house was not fit for the minister to see if he were in the neighborhood and wanted to “drop by”. My husband works a lot of hours and he was literally not home to take up my slack with the house. Now we are home schooling. I get hugs and give them often. I am on top of what they are learning, instead of “I don’t know” being all they learned that day. I teach them, so I have no clue what kind of at-home job I could do. We just stretch his paycheck until it screams and do without extra bells and whistles. For those who have the energy and all to work outside the home, rear children and have a happy marriage, you should volunteer to be studied for the rest of us :).

  4. proverbs31 Says:

    Hi Sylvie, I know what you mean. Homeschooling wasn’t really even thought of here (Australia) when I started working at home years ago. I knew it was done in the outback but never even considered it for home. However, because I was home when they got home each day when things were still fresh in their minds and hearts, it often meant I heard about things I wouldn’t have, if I’d not been home. So I am really grateful for that. If anyone reading these comments can answer the ‘study’ mentioned by Sylvie, we’d love to hear about it!

  5. Rosalyn Hernandez Says:

    I am the proud stay at home mother of a 2 year old boy. I decided to follow in my mother’s footsteps and devote myself to my son until he is in school. I feel that my family comes first and work comes second. My husband works and goes to school. I really think we need to get back to basics. I feels that we as mothers have a responsibility to raise our children and put material things second. I do not own my own home, and I am what most consider to be a poor person. My reward lies within the smile my son gives me every morning when he wakes up…every I love you and every hug I receive throughout the day. I encourage all to make some sacrifices for our children. Yes…in this day and age you need money to survive…but material things won’t follow us into the next world. We must raise our children with the constant knowledge of our Lord and savior. If we don’t do it, how can we expect others (daycare) to?

  6. Katrina Says:

    Great looking site so far!! I’m just starting to look around it but I love the title page! Would you please also visit my homepage?

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