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Being a new homemaker, no matter if you’ve just flown the nest, or are returning home from the workforce after 20 years, can be a daunting experience. Society paints the picture of the homemaker as a lazy woman who has the privilege of staying home all day and doing nothing. In reality, nothing could be further from the truth.
Homemaking, if it hasn’t been done before, can be overwhelming and intimidating to even the most organized of women. There is a constant list of tasks that repeat on the daily, weekly, monthly or yearly; the list never ends. There are things on the list that a new homemaker didn’t even know existed.
This can often cause overwhelm and shame for a new homemaker as she feels she is already failing and behind before she even gets a chance to begin.
The Bible tells us:
In the same way, older women are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not slaves to excessive drinking. They are to teach what is good, so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands and to love their children, to be self-controlled, pure, workers at home, kind, and in submission to their husbands, so that God’s word will not be slandered. — Titus 2:3-5 (CSB)
For me, I interpret this, in regards to homemaking at least, that we as homemakers who have been doing this for a while should be encouraging women to be workers at home. Many people focus on the “workers at home” aspect of that verse, but I would like to focus on the command for women to encourage one another.
When I first started homemaking in 2014 when I moved into my first apartment, I didn’t know the first thing. I mean, I knew how to scrub a toilet and basic cleaning; but I had no clue on how to keep a cleaning schedule, or recipe ideas, or budgeting, or buying groceries.
I wish I had had someone to encourage me back then as I hope I am encouraging others now. I often received comments such as “It must be nice not to have a job and to get to laze around all day.” or “Why are you mooching off of your husband?” or “Being a stay at home wife is just for mothers with small children.”
No one around me was encouraging in the fact that being a homemaker was a calling from God on women to care for their families and an opportunity for women to live the commandments of God.
Today, I would like to encourage you to encourage someone else. Maybe it’s a new homemaker in your church who just got married and isn’t quite sure what she’s doing, or a new mother whose in your book club. Who is in your circle of people that you can encourage? Because I would bet that her choice to remain home, or her husband and her choice, is being met with nasty comments and a fair amount of discouragement from others.
So I challenge you today, to encourage her in some way. Here are a few ideas of how to do just that.
1 | Make a Gift Basket
It seems silly to make a gift basket for a homemaker, and sometimes, maybe even a little offensive; but if you know the woman well this may be a good idea. Some items you could put in a homemaker’s gift basket could be:
- green cleaning supplies and recipes (glass bottles, un-paper towels, lesser common cleaning ingredients like borax, etc.)
- gift cards or products from her favorite brands (cleaners, essential oils, home decor, etc.)
- cards of encouragement
- a hand written note
- home decor
- a new devotional
- homemade coupons for babysitting, etc
These are just some ideas that might be helpful to a new homemaker. But, trust your gut if you know her well and get what you think would be helpful to her.
2 | Include Her
New homemakers can often feel isolated, misunderstood and alone. If you know a new homemaker that may not be in many groups at church or in the community for whatever reason, invite her to places and groups that will encourage her and help her grow.
Whether it’s with other homemakers in a Bible study, with other mother’s at a support or play group, or just with a new group of friends to have coffee and chat each week. Include her and encourage her to grow with others in the love of Christ.
Be a Mentor and a Friend
Finding a routine and rhythm as a homemaker is a constant battle as your life, and your routine is constantly changing as each season passes. One way you can encourage a new homemaker is to be there for her.
Whether that means listening and encouraging her when she’s discouraged by others, or by giving her tips and advice when asked on how to manage a household, or children, or finances.
We all need each other when it comes to learning as homemaking is no longer taught from mother to daughter. This is a dying art that we need to continue to encourage as God has instructed us. Sharing our wisdom and a listening ear is one of the best ways to encourage a new homemaker.
What are some ways that you encourage new homemakers around you? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!