Chapter 17 "Women, Encourage the Younger Women"
“Older women ... teaching what is good,
that they may encourage the young women
to love their husbands, to love their children,
to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind,
being subject to their own husbands,
that the word of God may not be dishonored."
In our society, young women seek out “experts” to help them in marriage, childbirth and child training. These young women, for the most part, have rejected the notion of being stay-at-home moms and submissive to their husbands. They unknowingly are dishonoring, even blaspheming, the Word of God by their actions. “To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.” Titus 2:5, KJV.
Are they to blame? Where are the older women who will encourage and teach the young women in their roles as wives, mothers and homemakers?
The older woman is reading this workbook. It is you. No matter what your age, you are an older woman to someone. Even a young woman in her twenties can influence a girl in her teens. And if we don’t take the time to encourage and teach these young women, what else are they to do but seek out the world’s view and standards?
Titus 2:4-5 “That they [older women] may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.”
Many of you are encouraging and teaching younger women and you don’t even know it. You are teaching them by your example. Young women in your church, your neighborhood, your place of work, and family members (your daughters, nieces and younger sisters) – they are all watching. What do they see? Are you an example of a godly woman or a woman who claims to be a Christian yet does not emulate this chapter’s opening verse?
2Cor. 3:2 “You are our letter, written in our hearts, known and read by all men.”
2 Cor. 3:2, KJV “Ye are our epistles written in our hearts, known and read of all men.”
Your life is an epistle or letter, which is being read by women who know you and also women who you may not know. Is your life bringing glory to God?
If it is not, then what are you going to do about it?
What to Teach
There are many things that we could teach the younger women, but does God give us any guidance or directions as to what we are to teach? God doesn’t leave it up to our favorite subjects or our passions or our preferences. The Bible clearly gives us a specific outline. But before He gives us His list, He sums it up right in the beginning with, “Teaching what is good.” Then He elaborates this first prerequisite with this list in Titus 2:3:
teaching what is good, that they may encourage the young women…
to love their husbands
to love their children
to be sensible
workers at home
being subject to their own husbands
[so that] the word of God may not be dishonored.
Know – Live – Speak
Whether or not you want your life to speak to others is not your choice. Our lives are our letters “known and read by all men.” I don’t know about you, but I want my life to show Jesus. People aren’t impressed with your Christian bumper sticker or fish on your car. They are not impressed with the cross you wear around your neck or the Bible you carry with you. They are looking at your life, your attitude and your love (or lack of love) for others. It is my prayer that these verses have brought conviction to your heart and that you will take the next step toward a life that whispers “Jesus.”
To change your life you will need to do these three things in this order:
- Know the Word of God.
- Live the Word of God.
- Speak the Word of God.
“Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” 2 Tim. 2:15, KJV. Until you know something you cannot live it. If this is your first time through this workbook, you have seen how learning the truth has set you free in many areas where you were once bound. This is not the power of this workbook; it is the power of His Word.
Dear friend, you have already taken the first step toward a life that will encourage the younger women. By taking this course you have begun to study the Word of God as it relates to women and the issues women face. Most of us, if not all of us, built our houses on sinking sand. Our opinions and lifestyles were not a result of knowing what God thought; instead we ignorantly accumulated teachers that tickled our ears.
But now we are all at the same place; we are all at the glorious point in our lives where we are open and searching for the truth. I know because you have sought after this workbook that is convicting and very difficult to swallow, especially in today’s world. We know that as we have renewed our minds on just a few of God’s principles that we were once ignorant of, we have seen tremendous changes in our lives. This motivates you and me to want more.
Once you know the truth, then you need to replace your old thoughts and old opinions with the truth. As you have been reading through this workbook, if you have been making those 3x5 cards as I have suggested, then you are well on your way to a new life that will change the lives of others.
“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.” Rom. 12:2. God’s way of changing us is simple and perfect. He tells us in this verse that by renewing our minds we will be transformed. On top of all that, we also prove, by our lives, what the true will of God is for a woman – that which is good, acceptable and perfect! Hallelujah!
How often have we TRIED to change ourselves? And every time we try we once again are defeated. Then we add more defeat to our lives as we try and change others, which has an even higher rate of failure. God’s ways are different. His ways are far above our ways and our reasoning.
Isa. 55:9 “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.”
Prov. 3:5 “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.”
The only way for us to change ourselves is to renew, or make new, our minds. The only way to change others is to live with them in love that is patient, kind, etc. As I mentioned before, using the 3x5 card method works. I know because in my mind are hundreds of Scriptures that replaced my thoughts and the way I used to think. And without any effort on my part, my life started to change because of the Scriptures that I read over and over again. Many women who now have restored marriages have told me that this method changed their lives. In addition, many write to tell me that they have literally worn out their books, reading them over 50 times! Putting that much of God’s Word in your mind will undoubtedly result in a totally transformed life!
Once your mind is renewed by a particular principle, then your life will naturally begin to reflect the change. In addition, we must also be willing to make the changes necessary and not compromise the will of God that has come to reside in our minds. The changes will appear in the ways that we act and react to things, the priorities in our lives and even our desires or goals. All of these things will begin to reflect our newly renewed minds. However, if we try to hang onto our old habits or friendships that don’t fit in with our new minds, then we fall into the trap of double-mindedness.
James 1:6-8 “But let him ask in faith without any doubting, for the one who doubts is like the surf of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man expect that he will receive anything from the Lord, being a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.”
When we continue to associate with those who are now not like-minded or hold on to old habits, doubts enter our minds. We begin to doubt the validity of the principle. We must instead not hesitate to take our renewed mind to the next step by making the changes in our lives that we have been prompted to make by the Holy Spirit.
Unfortunately too many make the mistake of hesitating to obey the leading of the Holy Spirit by not making changes in our lives. It is in the midst of this hesitation that we find ourselves in the very dangerous state of double-mindedness. This unfortunate state is where, I believe, most Christians of today live. It is why they don’t receive abundant blessings from God and do not live His abundant life as He promised. God tells us that those who are double-minded should expect NOTHING from God. It all began with knowing the truth, but then failing to live the truth.
We see it often in our ministry. When someone finds out the truth about trusting God in a particular area of her life, through the renewing of her mind she comes under conviction. But because of fear, rebellion or apathy, she fails to line her life up with her conviction. Soon there is a pattern of failure and confusion follows: the “double-minded” man principle is activated.
At this point, many women want to ask me what they should do about their newfound convictions when their husband does not yet share these convictions. This is when the principles in “Won Without a Word” should be followed. If you are careful NOT to manipulate and have stopped trying to get your own way, and if you have shown your husband the gentle and quiet spirit that is willing and eager to follow his lead, then when a situation arises you will not only be able to share your newly found conviction with your husband, but because of the gentleness of your spirit, he will very likely want to act on your newly found conviction.
If you are so radically and wonderfully changed in your attitude toward your husband, your husband, as was mentioned in the very beginning of this workbook, will want to get a copy of the men’s manual. This will put you in a perfect position for your entire family to be that “epistle read by all men.” Your positive influence can have a radical effect on the world around you when it is not only you who has changed, but your change has spilled over into the lives of your husband and your children. It happens all the time in my life and in our ministry – may it happen in your life!
Once your mind is renewed and your life reflects your renewed mind, then God will begin your ministry to other women. One of the greatest needs of today is for women to minister to other women. There are many young women who are going into seminary to become lady preachers. Personally, I am not interested in what they have to say. I am interested in a woman who has lived the life I have been called to live (as a wife, mother and homemaker) and has come through it victoriously. I don’t want someone to point the way; I want them to have built a bridge over the deep rivers and valleys they have personally crossed.
When I had to face caring for my father who was dying, I looked to an older woman who had cared for her bedridden mother. I knew she knew what I was feeling and the hardship that I was facing. Knowing she had done it and had not only survived but was greater for the experience gave me the fortitude and example to accomplish this difficult task. I cannot tell you how many times her example helped me to go on, not only to make it through caring for my father, but then again when I was caring for my dying mother. There are very few who will live a radically different life, a life that whispers, “Jesus.” But those who do are the ones who change the course of the world and never really know it.
God will begin your ministry, most likely, in the confines of your family, friends, church and community. Later, if you continue to grow, God will expand your territory. Who would have ever dreamed that the Lord could take a heartbroken person like myself and allow me to minister around the world? Certainly not me!
2Chr. 16:9 “For the eyes of the LORD move to and fro throughout the earth that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His.”
God is looking for you. He wants to use you. Just one person like yourself can change thousands of lives if you just search for the truth, get outside your area of comfort, allow the convictions to change you and begin to line your life up with your newly found principles. God will do the rest.
I don’t know about you, but I want God to ask the devil to consider me like he considered Job. I want God to take this frightened woman who is hiding behind this computer and make her a “mighty warrior” like Gideon. I want to have such faith that I could be like Abraham and be a friend of God’s. I want to be after God’s own heart like David and walk with God like Enoch had the pleasure of doing. I want to have the wisdom of Solomon to minister to the women of this world. I want to be a leader like Moses to deliver God’s people from the bondage of the world and lead them through the wilderness to the Promised Land. I want my life to be so pleasing to God that because of me my children will be blessed like David’s children and lineage.
You may say “impossible,” but I know it is possible. God said it and I believe it. “Jesus said, ‘With men it is impossible, but not with God; for all things are possible with God.’” Mark 10:27.
Matt. 7:16 “You will know them by their fruits. Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes, nor figs from thistles, are they?” Matt. 7:20 “So then, you will know them by their fruits.”
How do the younger women find you? They find you by your fruits! When women look to me for personal help in training their children, I tell them to look for the ladies in their church who have well behaved children. They are there, yet sometimes they are hard to find. These are the children who often sit in church with their parents rather than going to children’s church, but you may not notice them because they are not disruptive. You don’t notice them because they are not running around with the other children up and down the aisles. But when you find them, you know it.
Though I totally messed up in my marriage because of my ignorance of the principles of marriage, I did a bit better with my parenting and now I’ve got a LOT of fruits. We are continually praised for our children and for their behavior. These are my fruits in the area of children.
Young women need to see a happy woman for them to WANT what she has. This is a powerful evangelism tool. My older sister who just recently became a powerful, on-fire Christian told me that I was the greatest influence that led her to the Lord. She said quite frankly, “I wanted what you had!” She said she saw my children, my life and the blessings I lived in and said, “Why not me!” Then as I talked to her she realized Who was at the center of my life and Who was the giver of these blessings. This is evangelism!
So many women talk and lecture to their family members until they are blue in the face, and are puzzled why they don’t want to accept the Lord or any of our counsel. But if we are unhappy, miserable in our marriage, keep a dirty house, and act frazzled and unnerved most of the time, who would want what we have to offer? However, if you can live a life, not FREE from trials, but rather with the blessings that follow a woman who praises the Lord in the midst of those trials, that’s a life worth wanting.
It doesn’t happen overnight. It is a process. Personally, I began looking like a complete NUT, a moron, a fool – but I turned out to be a “fool for the Lord!” God in His infinite wisdom “has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to shame the things which are strong.” 1Cor. 1:27.
I stopped debating or trying to make them understand why I did what I did. They confronted us on the number of children we were continuing to have, the way we disciplined them, our decision to teach our children at home rather than sending them to school, my “standing by my man” who was in adultery, and our non-dating practices for our teens who are now in their twenties. But it didn’t take long for me to see that I was not going to convince them or anyone else by what I said; I had to live it long enough to produce fruits.
Jer. 17:7-8 “Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD and whose trust is the LORD. For he will be like a tree planted by the water, that extends its roots by a stream and will not fear when the heat comes; but its leaves will be green, and it will not be anxious in a year of drought nor cease to yield fruit.”
I love the way that verse reads: “who trusts in the LORD and whose trust IS the LORD.” If your trust is in Him and in His Word and in His promises, then I promise you that in the end you will not be ashamed.
Fulfilling Your Call
When my fourth child was born I was in my early thirties. This child, a girl, would forever change my life. I knew that someday she would look to me and emulate me as she grew to womanhood. I knew I needed help. When I discovered the passage in Titus 2 about the “older women teaching the younger women” I went to my pastor and asked him where I might find an “older woman” to teach me. His reply was simply, “I don’t know.” If a woman came to your pastor, today, and asked the same question, what would be his response?
Unfortunately, most young women don’t even know that the Bible tells them where they are to get help, and even if they did, would they find you? It has been my heart since that day my house fell to be an older woman who helps younger women prevent their houses from falling. I made so many mistakes that could have been avoided had I just had a godly woman willing to show me what the Bible said and to love me enough to tell me when I was making a fatal mistake, as with my contentiousness, which resulted in my marriage being destroyed. And now to complicate matters, most young women don’t want to listen to anyone about anything. They seek out “experts” in child training rather than the woman who has the well behaved children. They listen to talk shows to get “advice” from other foolish, arrogant woman who are in the world and follow that fatal advice with their husbands.
This workbook, I feel, is just one of the ways that the Lord has given me “the desires of my heart.” My ministry, for the most part, is spent helping desperate women who have just found out that their husband has been sleeping with their best friend, has moved in with her or has just filed for a divorce. My heart for YEARS has been to be able to somehow prevent the pain and heartache that I had to endure. Rather than waiting for the problem to arise, let us all fulfill the call on our lives as the “older woman” and invite women we know to study A Wise Woman.
Most groups are born when just two like-minded friends get together to go through the workbook. Then, lo and behold, they meet someone who would benefit from the information and they invite her for the next time through. Their group grows by word of mouth and the fruits are incredible: women are getting saved, marriages are being restored, and women are leaving the workplace to care for their little ones. Soon they find that they are older women MINISTERING to the real needs of the women in their church, neighborhood and circle of friends.
God’s way often doesn’t happen through a board of directors or a vote. His way begins with women, like you and maybe your friend, who want more of God in their lives. They want their lives to be different and they stumble on A Wise Woman, which they find different than anything they’ve ever read or heard. Its message is tough to swallow, but soon after a “peace” sets in. They are forever changed by the power of God and by the principles and promises of His Word.
Has God placed a burden on your heart for the women in your life, church and community? Then I would urge you to begin praying about opening your home to the women the Lord will send you. If you have a VCR and a coffee pot, then you are ready to begin to change the world around you. This may be just the first step in your ministry to reach women with the gospel and to heal the brokenhearted in the church. Will you fulfill the call the Lord has on your life?
I Shall Not Be Ashamed
God promises that if we look to Him, if we trust Him, if we follow His commandment about how to live and set our faces like flint, not allowing criticism and controversy to cause us to compromise what we know is true, then we, too, will not be ashamed.
Ps. 34:5 “They looked to Him and were radiant, and their faces shall never be ashamed.”
Ps. 119:6 “Then I shall not be ashamed when I look upon all Thy commandments.”
Ps. 127:5 “How blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them [children]; they shall not be ashamed, when they speak with their enemies in the gate.”
Isa. 50:7 “For the Lord GOD helps Me, therefore, I am not disgraced; therefore, I have set My face like flint, and I know that I shall not be ashamed.”
It’s not an easy road being a powerful Christian woman today and following the teachings of the Lord and His Word, but it is rewarding. It’s not about living a “religious” life. Being religious does more to run people off from God than to win them to Him. It’s living a fruit-bearing life that comes from a renewed mind followed by a life of dying to self. It’s a life that shows through by the way you radiate the love of the Lord and exhibit the fruits of a life devoted to loving Him. It’s about living the gospel, not just in word but in deed. “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.” Rom. 1:16. Will you join me?
“Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord,
or of me His prisoner;
but join with me in suffering for the gospel
according to the power of God…”
May Your Life Encourage and Teach the Younger Women!
Personal commitment: To make my life a living epistle that will glorify God. “Based on what I have learned from God's Word, I commit to learning, living and speaking the truth to the younger women in my life. I will begin at home and move out from there as the Lord leads.”
If you are ready to make a commitment to GOD to finish the course, by CLICKING HERE you've agreed, and are ready to document this next step along your Restoration Journey in your "My Daily Journal" form. Take your time, sit down, grab your coffee or tea, and pour your heart into your Journal.
As an “Older women likewise…teaching what is good, that they may ENCOURAGE the young women…” (Titus 2:3) you will have the opportunity to speak to the younger women who are still single as part of your ministry.