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Ellen White on Marriage (part 4) The Husband’s Equal

Posted by adventbiblestudy on August 9, 2011


The Husband’s Equal.–Woman should fill the position which God originally designed for her, as her husband’s equal. The world needs mothers who are mothers not merely in name but in every sense of the word. We may safely say that the distinctive duties of woman are more sacred, more holy, than those of man. Let woman realize the sacredness of her work and in the strength and fear of God take up her life mission. Let her educate her children for usefulness in this world and for a home in the better world. {AH 231.1}

The wife and mother should not sacrifice her strength and allow her powers to lie dormant, leaning wholly upon her husband. Her individuality cannot be merged in his. She should feel that she is her husband’s equal– to stand by his side, she faithful at her post of duty and he at his. Her work in the education of her children is in every respect as elevating and ennobling as any post of duty he may be called to fill, even if it is to be the chief magistrate of the nation. {AH 231.2}

The Queen of the Home.–The king upon his throne has no higher work than has the mother. The mother is queen of her household. She has in her power the molding of her children’s characters, that they may be fitted for the higher, immortal life. An angel could not ask for a higher mission; for in doing this work she is doing service for God. Let her only realize the high character of her task, and it will inspire her with courage. Let her realize the worth of her work and put on the whole armor of God, that she may resist the temptation to conform to the world’s standard. Her work is for time and for eternity. {AH 231.3}

The mother is the queen of the home, and the children are her subjects. She is to rule her household wisely, in the dignity of her motherhood. Her influence in the home is to be paramount; her word, law. If she is a Christian, under God’s control, she will command the respect of her children. {AH 232.1}

The children are to be taught to regard their mother, not as a slave whose work it is to wait on them, but as a queen who is to guide and direct them, teaching them line upon line, precept upon precept. {AH 232.2}

God Has Appointed Her Work.–Would that every mother could realize how great are her duties and her responsibilities and how great will be the reward of faithfulness. {AH 233.2}

The mother who cheerfully takes up the duties lying directly in her path will feel that life is to her precious, because God has given her a work to perform. In this work she need not necessarily dwarf her mind nor allow her intellect to become enfeebled. {AH 233.3}

The mother’s work is given her of God, to bring up her children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. The love and fear of God should ever be kept before their tender minds. When corrected, they should be taught to feel that they are admonished of God, that He is displeased with deception, untruthfulness, and wrongdoing. Thus the minds of little ones may be so connected with God that all they do and say will be in reference to His glory; and in after years they will not be like the reed in the wind, continually wavering between inclination and duty. {AH 233.4}

To lead them to Jesus is not all that is required. . . . These children are to be educated and trained to become disciples of Christ, “that our sons may be as plants grown up in their youth; that our daughters may be as corner stones, polished after the similitude of a palace.” This work of molding, refining, and polishing is the mother’s. The character of the child is to be developed. The mother must engrave upon the tablet of the heart lessons as enduring as eternity; and she will surely meet the displeasure of the Lord if she neglects this sacred work or allows anything to interfere with it. . . . The Christian mother has her God-appointed work, which she will not neglect if she is closely connected with God and imbued with His Spirit. {AH 234.1}

The mother is God’s agent to Christianize her family. She is to exemplify Biblical religion, showing how its influence is to control us in its everyday duties and pleasures, teaching her children that by grace alone can they be saved, through faith, which is the gift of God. This constant teaching as to what Christ is to us and to them, His love, His goodness, His mercy, revealed in the great plan of redemption, will make a hallowed, sacred impress on the heart. {AH 235.2}

The training of children constitutes an important part of God’s plan for demonstrating the power of Christianity. A solemn responsibility rests upon parents to so train their children that when they go forth into the world, they will do good and not evil to those with whom they associate. {AH 235.3}

The world teems with corrupting influences. Fashion and custom exert a strong power over the young. If the mother fails in her duty to instruct, guide, and restrain, her children will naturally accept the evil and turn from the good. Let every mother go often to her Saviour with the prayer, “Teach us, how shall we order the child, and what shall we do unto him?” Let her heed the instruction which God has given in His word, and wisdom will be given her as she shall have need. {AH 237.1}

The Faithful Mother Enrolled in Book of Immortal Fame.–Self-denial and the cross are our portion. Will we accept it? None of us need expect that when the last great trials come upon us, a self-sacrificing, patriotic spirit will be developed in a moment because needed. No, indeed, this spirit must be blended with our daily experience and infused into the minds and hearts of our children, both by precept and example. Mothers in Israel may not be warriors themselves, but they may raise up warriors who shall gird on the whole armor and fight manfully the battles of the Lord. {AH 238.1}

Mothers, to a great degree the destiny of your children rests in your hands. If you fail in duty, you may place them in the ranks of the enemy and make them his agents to ruin souls; but by a godly example and faithful discipline you may lead them to Christ and make them the instruments in His hands of saving many souls. {AH 238.2}

Her work [the Christian mother’s, if done faithfully in God, will be immortalized. The votaries of fashion will never see or understand the immortal beauty of that Christian mother’s work, and will sneer at her old-fashioned notions and her plain, unadorned dress; while the Majesty of heaven will write the name of that faithful mother in the book of immortal fame. {AH 238.3}

Mother’s Influence Reaches Into Eternity.–The sphere of the mother may be humble; but her influence, united with the father’s, is as abiding as eternity. Next to God, the mother’s power for good is the strongest known on earth. {AH 240.1}

The mother’s influence is an unceasing influence; and if it is always on the side of right, her children’s characters will testify to her moral earnestness and worth. Her smile, her encouragement, may be an inspiring force. She may bring sunshine to the heart of her child by a word of love, a smile of approval. . . . {AH 240.2}

When her influence is for truth, for virtue, when she is guided by divine wisdom, what a power for Christ will be her life! Her influence will reach on through time into eternity. What a thought is this–that the mother’s looks and words and actions bear fruit in eternity, and the salvation or ruin of many will be the result of her influence! {AH 240.3}

Little does the mother realize that her influence in the judicious training of her children reaches with such power through the vicissitudes of this life, stretching forward into the future, immortal life. To fashion a character after the heavenly Model requires much faithful, earnest, persevering labor; but it will pay, for God is a rewarder of all well-directed labor in securing the salvation of souls. {AH 240.4}

The perception of children is quick, and they discern patient, loving tones from the impatient, passionate command, which dries up the moisture of love and affection in the hearts of children. The true Christian mother will not drive her children from her presence by her fretfulness and lack of sympathizing love. {AH 242.2}

The World’s Debt to Mothers.–The day of God will reveal how much the world owes to godly mothers for men who have been unflinching advocates of truth and reform–men who have been bold to do and dare, who have stood unshaken amid trials and temptations; men who chose the high and holy interests of truth and the glory of God before worldly honor or life itself. {AH 243.1}

Mothers, awake to the fact that your influence and example are affecting the character and destiny of your children; and in view of your responsibility, develop a well-balanced mind and a pure character, reflecting only the true, the good, and the beautiful. {AH 243.2}

Mother Tempted to Feel That Her Work Is Unimportant.–The mother’s work often seems to her an unimportant service. It is a work that is rarely appreciated. Others know little of her many cares and burdens. Her days are occupied with a round of little duties, all calling for patient effort, for self-control, for tact, wisdom, and self-sacrificing love; yet she cannot boast of what she has done as any great achievement. She has only kept things in the home running smoothly. Often weary and perplexed, she has tried to speak kindly to the children, to keep them busy and happy, and to guide their little feet in the right path. She feels that she has accomplished nothing. But it is not so. Heavenly angels watch the careworn mother, noting the burdens she carries day by day. Her name may not have been heard in the world, but it is written in the Lamb’s book of life. {AH 244.1}

The true wife and mother . . . will perform her duties with dignity and cheerfulness, not considering it degrading to do with her own hands whatever it is necessary to do in a well-ordered household. {AH 244.2}

Religious Activities Should Not Supersede Care of Family.–If you ignore your duty as a wife and mother and hold out your hands for the Lord to put another class of work in them, be sure that He will not contradict Himself; He points you to the duty you have to do at home. If you have the idea that some work greater and holier than this has been entrusted to you, you are under a deception. By faithfulness in your own home, working for the souls of those who are nearest to you, you may be gaining a fitness to work for Christ in a wider field. But be sure that those who are neglectful of their duty in the home circle are not prepared to work for other souls. {AH 245.4}

The Lord has not called you to neglect your home and your husband and children. He never works in this way; and He never will. . . . Never for a moment suppose that God has given you a work that will necessitate a separation from your precious little flock. Do not leave them to become demoralized by improper associations and to harden their hearts against their mother. This is letting your light shine in a wrong way, altogether; you are making it more difficult for your children to become what God would have them and win heaven at last. God cares for them, and so must you if you claim to be His child. {AH 246.1}

During the first years of their lives is the time in which to work and watch and pray and encourage every good inclination. This work must go on without interruption. You may be urged to attend mothers’ meetings and sewing circles, that you may do missionary work; but unless there is a faithful, understanding instructor to be left with your children, it is your duty to answer that the Lord has committed to you another work which you can in no wise neglect. You cannot overwork in any line without becoming disqualified for the work of training your little ones and making them what God would have them be. As Christ’s co-worker you must bring them to Him disciplined and trained. {AH 246.2}

Much of the malformation of an ill-trained child’s character lies at the mother’s door. The mother should not accept burdens in the church work which compel her to neglect her children. The best work in which a mother can engage is to see that no stitches are dropped in the training of her children. . . . {AH 246.3}

In no other way can a mother help the church more than by devoting her time to those who are dependent upon her for instruction and training. {AH 247.1}

The wife and mother who nobly overcomes difficulties under which others sink for want of patience and fortitude to persevere not only becomes strong herself in doing her duty, but her experience in overcoming temptations and obstacles qualifies her to be an efficient help to others, both by words and example. Many who do well under favorable circumstances seem to undergo a transformation of character under adversity and trial; they deteriorate in proportion to their troubles. God never designed that we should be the sport of circumstances. {AH 248.3}

While the mistress of the household may perform her outward duties with exactitude, she may be continually crying out against the slavery to which she is doomed, and exaggerate her responsibilities and restrictions by comparing her lot with what she styles the higher life of woman. . . . While she is fruitlessly yearning for a different life, she is nourishing a sinful discontent and making her home very unpleasant for her husband and children. {AH 249.2}

If woman looks to God for strength and comfort and in His fear seeks to perform her daily duties, she will win the respect and confidence of her husband and see her children coming to maturity honorable men and women, having moral stamina to do right. But mothers who neglect present opportunities, and let their duties and burdens fall upon others, will find that their responsibility remains the same, and they will reap in bitterness what they have sown in carelessness and neglect. There is no chance work in this life; the harvest will be determined by the character of the seed sown. {AH 250.2}

Women Should Be Qualified to Become Mothers.– Women have need of great patience before they are qualified to become mothers. God has ordained that they shall be fitted for this work. The work of the mother becomes infinite through her connection with Christ. It is beyond understanding. Woman’s office is sacred. The presence of Jesus is needed in the home; for the mother’s ministries of love may shape the home into a Bethel. The husband and the wife are to co-operate. What a world we would have if all mothers would consecrate themselves on the altar of God, and would consecrate their offspring to God, both before and after its birth! {AH 255.1}

Great care should be exercised to have the surroundings of the mother pleasant and happy. The husband and father is under special responsibility to do all in his power to lighten the burden of the wife and mother. He should bear, as much as possible, the burden of her condition. He should be affable, courteous, kind, and tender, and specially attentive to all her wants. Not half the care is taken of some women while they are bearing children that is taken of animals in the stable. {AH 257.1}

Maintain a Peaceful, Trustful Attitude.–She who expects to become a mother should keep her soul in the love of God. Her mind should be at peace; she should rest in the love of Jesus, practicing the words of Christ. She should remember that the mother is a laborer together with God. {AH 259.1}

Mothers to Seek Divine Aid.–Did mothers but realize the importance of their mission, they would be much in secret prayer, presenting their children to Jesus, imploring His blessing upon them, and pleading for wisdom to discharge aright their sacred duties. Let the mother improve every opportunity to mold and fashion the disposition and habits of her children. Let her watch carefully the development of character, repressing traits that are too prominent, encouraging those that are deficient. Let her make her own life a pure and noble example to her precious charge. {AH 265.4}

Aim Higher Than the World’s Standard.–The mother should not be governed by the world’s opinion, nor labor to reach its standard. She should decide for herself what is the great end and aim of life and then bend all her efforts to attain that end. She may, for want of time, neglect many things about her house, with no serious evil results; but she cannot with impunity neglect the proper discipline of her children. Their defective characters will publish her unfaithfulness. The evils which she permits to pass uncorrected, the coarse, rough manners, the disrespect and disobedience, the habits of idleness and inattention, will reflect dishonor upon her and embitter her life. Mothers, the destiny of your children rests to a great extent in your hands. If you fail in duty, you may place them in Satan’s ranks, and make them his agents to ruin other souls. Or your faithful discipline and godly example may lead them to Christ, and they in turn will influence others, and thus many souls may be saved through your instrumentality. {AH 267.6}

Counsel to a Stepmother.–Your marriage to one who is a father of children will prove to be a blessing to you. . . . You were in danger of becoming self-centered. You had precious traits of character that needed to be awakened and exercised. . . . Through your new relations you will gain an experience that will teach you how to deal with minds. By the care of children affection, love, and tenderness are developed. The responsibilities resting upon you in your family may be a means of great blessing to you. These children will be to you a precious lesson book. They will bring you many blessings if you read them aright. The train of thought awakened by their care will call into exercise tenderness, love, and sympathy. Although these children are not a part of your flesh and blood, yet through your marriage to their father, they have become yours, to be loved, cherished, instructed, and ministered to by you. Your connection with them will call into exercise thoughts and plans that will be of genuine benefit to you. . . . By the experience that you will gain in your home, you will lose the self-centered ideas that threatened to mar your work and will change the set plans that have needed softening and subduing. . . . {AH 270.1}

You have needed to develop greater tenderness and larger sympathy, that you might come close to those in need of gentle, sympathetic, loving words. Your children will call out these traits of character and will help you to develop breadth of mind and judgment. Through loving association with them, you will learn to be more tender and sympathetic in your ministry for suffering humanity. {AH 270.2}

There is nothing which more surely leads to evil than to lift all burdens from children, leaving them to an idle, aimless life, to do nothing, or to occupy themselves as they please. The minds of children are active, and if not occupied with that which is good and useful, they will inevitably turn to what is bad. While it is right and necessary for them to have recreation, they should be taught to work, to have regular hours for physical labor and also for reading and study. See that they have employment suited to their years and are supplied with useful and interesting books. {AH 284.3}

Parents are entitled to a degree of love and respect which is due to no other person. God Himself, who has placed upon them a responsibility for the souls committed to their charge, has ordained that during the earlier years of life parents shall stand in the place of God to their children. And he who rejects the rightful authority of his parents is rejecting the authority of God. The fifth commandment requires children not only to yield respect, submission, and obedience to their parents, but also to give them love and tenderness, to lighten their cares, to guard their reputation, and to succor and comfort them in old age. {AH 293.1}

God cannot prosper those who go directly contrary to the plainest duty specified in His word, the duty of children to their parents. . . . If they disrespect and dishonor their earthly parents, they will not respect and love their Creator. {AH 293.2}

In this rebellious age children who have not received right instruction and discipline have but little sense of their obligations to their parents. It is often the case that the more their parents do for them, the more ungrateful they are and the less they respect them. Children who have been petted and waited upon always expect it; and if their expectations are not met, they are disappointed and discouraged. This same disposition will be seen through their whole lives; they will be helpless, leaning upon others for aid, expecting others to favor them and yield to them. And if they are opposed, even after they have grown to manhood and womanhood, they think themselves abused; and thus they worry their way through the world, hardly able to bear their own weight, often murmuring and fretting because everything does not suit them. {AH 294.1}

Jesus knows the needs of children, and He loves to listen to their prayers. Let the children shut out the world and everything that would attract the thoughts from God; and let them feel that they are alone with God, that His eye looks into the inmost heart and reads the desire of the soul, and that they may talk with God. . . . {AH 299.4}

Then, children, ask God to do for you those things that you cannot do for yourselves. Tell Jesus everything. Lay open before Him the secrets of your heart; for His eye searches the inmost recesses of the soul, and He reads your thoughts as an open book. When you have asked for the things that are necessary for your soul’s good, believe that you receive them, and you shall have them. {AH 299.5}

 Ellen White on Marriage (part 1)  Tender Ties That Bind

Ellen White on Marriage (part 2)  Love Is a Precious Gift From Jesus

Ellen White on Marriage (part 3)  The Secret of Family Unity

Ellen White on Marriage (part 4)  The Husband’s Equal

Ellen White on Marriage (part 5)  Hearts to Be Bound by the Silken Cord of Love

Ellen White on Marriage (part 6)  Give a Living Example of Self-control

Ellen White on Marriage (part 7)  How Satan Gains Entrance to the Soul

7 Responses to “Ellen White on Marriage (part 4) The Husband’s Equal”

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