The Unlikely Homemaker!

Do it yourself freezer meals? Canning? Being hospitality ready?

These were all foreign ideas to me. I did know how to cook a few things which maaay or may not have been as a result of an unfortunate incident when, at the age of nine, I was instructed to “cook some beans”. Several hours and four hangry brothers later... I learned a valuable lesson. Add water to the pot in order for the beans to actually cook. Who knew?

People often felt sorry for me as a child, growing up without a mom. She passed away two weeks after my fifth birthday, just ten days after giving birth to my baby sister. At the time, I didn't really grasp it. Of course I was sad to have lost her, but I didn’t see that my life was much different from those around me. It wasn’t until after I got married that I really began to understand what had been lost.

I didn’t know much about anything when it came to being a good wife. Despite all my dreams of the super-amazing woman I thought I would be when I got married, in reality, I didn’t know what that should look like.

How did submission play itself out in real life? What did it mean to honour your husband? Obviously, I understood the idea of it, but how did I offer my opinions and ideas without being pushy? What did it mean to support my husband in a decision I felt was unwise? Mostly, all I had really seen of marriage was on TV and, well, that wasn’t what I had in mind. Aside from that, I just hadn’t had the opportunity to see much of any kind of marriage. (There’s a lot less of a social life for a single parent family than there is for those with two parents.)

We tend to look at others and assume we all got the same puzzle pieces in life. We often can’t understand why they would make such poor choices when the better choices were so obvious. But what if we didn’t all get the same puzzle pieces? Maybe their picture was much more blurred than ours. Maybe they didn’t get all the pieces they needed for their puzzle.

I had a lot of missing pieces and I stumbled my way through the first year of marriage. When motherhood came along 13 months later, following an early miscarriage with the first, I was completely clueless! For starters, I didn’t know pregnancy would be so. hard. I also didn’t know how to take care of this baby who didn’t sleep and never stopped crying!

I had a million questions! I felt completely lost and the happily ever after I had envisioned hadn’t included breast infections and misbehaved kids and spills and mess and a thousand other things that were a complete inconvenience to my selfishness.

But God.

God is gracious and He began to surround me with faithful women who mentored me, whether they realized it or not. I became a sponge for information. I asked questions. So many questions. I watched. I observed. I sought. I wanted to know what Biblical womanhood looked like.

This is the part where I’d love to tell you about the amazing woman I have become! Um, not exactly. I have not attained. But I am not where I once was.

I’m still learning. I still watch and observe and ask. I still have many questions. And I am learning. I am learning that our weaknesses can be the very things that make us strong. That our lack of having what we think we need pushes us to be resourceful in ways others miss.That the broken and missing pieces in our lives might be there to draw us to the One who gives us, not only life, but abundant life.

I mourn for what might have been but I am so grateful for what is. For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in me, will perform it until the day of Christ. (Phil. 1:6)

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Helen Siemens
Beacon Bible Chapel

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