The First Step Toward Being Intentional at Home

If Mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy.

The grammar of this old Southern bit of wisdom makes me cringe, but the older I get the more I understand - and am convicted by - the truth it contains: my attitude, countenance, words, mood, and actions set the tone in our home.

As I begin this journey toward intentional living, I have found exhortation in Aimee's wise words in Chapter One,
We must certainly show forth our Lord God's beauty in this awesome task [being a helper to our husbands]. And for us to do this properly, it is imperative that we are functioning appropriately in our role. (p. 22)
I see these very words lived out in the life of Sarah Edwards.  As Noel Piper says, Sarah Edwards was a supporter, protector and homebuilder for her husband, a godly mother and example for her children, and a hostess, comforter and encourager to guests.
While she uniformly paid a becoming deference to her husband and treated him with entire respect, she spared no pains in conforming to his inclination and rendering everything in the family agreeable and pleasant; accounting it her greatest glory and there wherein she could best serve God and her generation, to be the means in this way of promoting his usefulness and happiness. (Samuel Hopkins on Sarah Edwards)
The margins of the books are already covered in penciled scrawls. I grab my Living Intentionally notebook to put it all together. There, among the rainbow of arrows, asterisks, and other marks that are meaningless to anyone but me, I see it. Biblical womanhood requires being intentional in my home.

Do I want to support, protect, and build a home for my husband? I consider the question long and hard. The simple - the right - answer is yes. But how? How do I support, protect - how do I help - him?

Do I want to set an example for my daughter? Again, yes! And again, how?

Finally, do I want to be a hostess, comforter and encourager to others in my life? The answer and the resulting question still linger.

These are the things I begin to work out. As I scratch notes in the margins, jot quotes and ideas on paper, I realize God is writing a story across the hardness of my heart. I don't know the ending, but I know this beginning - this first, infinitesimal step - is a good place to start.

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