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I’ve been wanting to say something as a mom and as a Christian for quite some time about the movement known as Full Quiver or Quiverfull. A midwife I know blogged about the notion of a full quiver and what it means to her over on MommyMidwife’s Blog last week. I have to say that I agree wholeheartedly with her viewpoint on family size – that it’s a personal decision that’s between a wife, husband, and God.
What MommyMidwife didn’t mention is that the Quiverfull way is more than choosing to reject birth control and having as many children “as the Lord blesses” a couple with. It’s a patriarchal lifestyle of seclusion from modern society. The husband/father is the prime authority figure and the wife/mother/daughters must submit to his authority. They homeschool practically universally, for religious reasons, and usually birth at home. The father is typically self-employed, running a family business, and homesteading or living off the land is not uncommon especially if the family lives in a rural area. College education seems to be looked down upon, especially for the daughters. Daughters are expected to be married off soon after the completion of their basic education by a young “Godly” man who “asks her hand” in marriage and has the approval of her father. The females dress “modestly” which means no pants or shorts but long dresses or skirts, and they keep their hair long. A lot of these families do home church as well, probably because they have trouble fitting in a modern congregation, even if it’s Evangelical. Those that do attend a church seem to be of the Fundamentalist persuasion, though there are Quiverfull adherents that hail from across the board of Christianity. It is a backlash against feminism towards the other extreme, and seems like a lifestyle that is at odds with, and deliberately so, the “seven mountains” of (modern) culture: arts and entertainment, business, education, family, government, media, and religion.
Of course the most well-known Quiverfull family is the Duggar family of Discovery Channel/TLC fame.
I’m really perplexed by the very Old-Testament-style legalism of this movement and its twisting of Scripture to justify its purpose. Yes, children are a blessing from the Lord, but they’re also a tremendous responsibility. The New Testament also teaches the virtues of not marrying (and hence not having children) for the sake of the Kingdom of God – as one can totally devote himself or herself to the Lord’s work. Some will be called to a life of celibacy. Jesus said in Matthew 19:12 (NKJV):
For there are eunuchs who were born thus from their mother’s womb, and there are eunuchs who were made eunuchs by men, and there are eunuchs who have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake. He who is able to accept it, let him accept it.
Here’s what 1 Corinthians 7 has to say (NLT):
1 Now regarding the questions you asked in your letter. Yes, it is good to live a celibate life. 2 But because there is so much sexual immorality, each man should have his own wife, and each woman should have her own husband.
3 The husband should fulfill his wife’s sexual needs, and the wife should fulfill her husband’s needs. 4 The wife gives authority over her body to her husband, and the husband gives authority over his body to his wife.
5 Do not deprive each other of sexual relations, unless you both agree to refrain from sexual intimacy for a limited time so you can give yourselves more completely to prayer. Afterward, you should come together again so that Satan won’t be able to tempt you because of your lack of self-control. 6 I say this as a concession, not as a command. 7 But I wish everyone were single, just as I am. But God gives to some the gift of marriage, and to others the gift of singleness.
8 So I say to those who aren’t married and to widows—it’s better to stay unmarried, just as I am. 9 But if they can’t control themselves, they should go ahead and marry. It’s better to marry than to burn with lust.
25 Now regarding your question about the young women who are not yet married. I do not have a command from the Lord for them. But the Lord in his mercy has given me wisdom that can be trusted, and I will share it with you. 26 Because of the present crisis, I think it is best to remain as you are. 27 If you have a wife, do not seek to end the marriage. If you do not have a wife, do not seek to get married. 28 But if you do get married, it is not a sin. And if a young woman gets married, it is not a sin. However, those who get married at this time will have troubles, and I am trying to spare you those problems.
29 But let me say this, dear brothers and sisters: The time that remains is very short. So from now on, those with wives should not focus only on their marriage. 30 Those who weep or who rejoice or who buy things should not be absorbed by their weeping or their joy or their possessions. 31 Those who use the things of the world should not become attached to them. For this world as we know it will soon pass away.
32 I want you to be free from the concerns of this life. An unmarried man can spend his time doing the Lord’s work and thinking how to please him. 33 But a married man has to think about his earthly responsibilities and how to please his wife. 34 His interests are divided. In the same way, a woman who is no longer married or has never been married can be devoted to the Lord and holy in body and in spirit. But a married woman has to think about her earthly responsibilities and how to please her husband. 35 I am saying this for your benefit, not to place restrictions on you. I want you to do whatever will help you serve the Lord best, with as few distractions as possible.
36 But if a man thinks that he’s treating his fiancée improperly and will inevitably give in to his passion, let him marry her as he wishes. It is not a sin. 37 But if he has decided firmly not to marry and there is no urgency and he can control his passion, he does well not to marry. 38 So the person who marries his fiancée does well, and the person who doesn’t marry does even better.
39 A wife is bound to her husband as long as he lives. If her husband dies, she is free to marry anyone she wishes, but only if he loves the Lord. 40 But in my opinion it would be better for her to stay single, and I think I am giving you counsel from God’s Spirit when I say this.
I’m going to blog on this some more, but one post is too long so stay tuned. I’m going to address more of the Quiverfull movement’s sectarianism (some might call it cultishness), unbalanced views of patriarchy and female submissiveness, a strange take on growing the Kingdom of God and hints of racism, whether intended or not.
Well, I’ve lost as much as 8 lbs from my starting point last month, and then gained 10 per my scale in the matter of less than a week. I don’t look or feel like my weight has shifted that much. I have to think my scale is broken, because my 5yo son was playing with the dial to zero it (he turned it so much the scale was at least 180 off) so until I get a new scale I don’t have much to report. I’m actually kind of off track because we moved out of the house we were staying in for the last five months last week and are in a temporary location, stuck in housing limbo again. We need prayer please!
Back in Fall 2007 I went on the South Beach Diet and lost about 20 lbs. Then the holidays came up and I slacked off. However, I pretty much kept the weight off as long as I didn’t pig out on carbs and avoided high fructose corn syrup – when I eat snacks with it or start drinking sodas sweetened with it my weight shoots up rapidly.
Now fast-forward 3 years. I have mild to moderate hypertension that I want to bring down without drugs, my blood cholesterol is borderline high, and I still really want to get down to what I weighed 10 years ago. I crept up another 5 lbs so I need to lose 35 lbs to reach my goal. About a month ago I started eating low-car again and after about 2 weeks lost 5 lbs. Then I gained 2 lbs which I think was due to my cycle and lost them again. But I’m up against this wall, which I’m not sure is a plateau so much as a fixed threshold. My weight is at a number that I have not been able to get below with any conscious effort since my first child was about 8 months. It was easy to lose down to that number more than once, and I think it will be easy to lose weight again once I can break past it. When I had all my babies my weight fell off within the first week postpartum to well below this number but would creep up again over several months. And it doesn’t help that I’ve been seriously craving chips and cookies and giving in either.
So, after reading up some I’ve decided that maybe I need to do some fasting/detoxing to kickstart my weight loss and eliminate those craving. For the next 3 days I’m eating raw veggies and fruits and I’m going to try to drink lots of water as well as herbal tea. Of course I’ll have to eat the holiday meal, but I’m going to be sensible about it and if my weight creeps up again going into next week I’ll do it again, maybe for up to a week. Hopefully I won’t need to, but if I need to I can do this.
It’s not about spending time with family and friends or exchanging gifts – we can do that anytime and shouldn’t need an official holiday to give us an excuse. It’s about celebrating God’s gift to us: sending His only begotten Son into the world, born of a virgin.
I’ve posted very little this year, partly due to being active on Facebook posting personal thoughts and sharing tidbits with friends and family but also largely due to not wanting to talk very much about stuff like I used to. With all that the family has gone through for a year or so I’ve been too stressed to write – I honestly didn’t feel the freedom to flow in words. My activity on this blog has gone up and down and I’ve considered taking it down, but I’m not ready to do that yet. I feel like I need to keep sharing my thoughts and keeping what I’ve already shared up here for posterity, so here the blog stays and here I am again. So whenever something is laid on my heart that I feel I need to say something about, I’ll take some time to say it, and hopefully someone will be touched by it, whether they’re encouraged, challenged, or just amused.
During the 1st service in church on Sunday April 18, the manifest presence of the Lord was like nothing I’ve experienced in a LOOOONG time. I was singing with the worship team and it was like the Shekinah glory settled on us. We were singing the song “Jesus is the Lord” (World Mandate or Travis Cottrell) when I was taken by surprise like I was standing at the shoreline on the beach and a big wave caught me off guard, knocked me off my feet and left me soaked! I had a hard time singing because I just started crying uncontrollably. God’s presence remained strong throughout that service.
I believe I got a touch from God and that He gave me my joy back, because when I came out of church, I felt so happy like I didn’t have a care in the world! I had been dealing with depression off and on since my son was born in Aug. 2005. When he was only 4 weeks old all my joy and life energy drained right out of me and I had been struggling to get it back ever since. My family’s financial situation over the last year was also overwhelming me and I was filled with anxiety. But since I left church Sunday last week, the worry and frustration has been gone! I used to dread getting up every morning, but not anymore!
For the first time I really GET IT that GOD IS IN CONTROL AND HE KNOWS MY EVERY NEED. I actually wondered whether He truly cared or if was punishing me and my husband. I know that thought process was seeded by the enemy but when you’re depressed you entertain the worst thoughts. Today however I feel like I’m about to burst with joy and gratitude at what HE has already done. The same power that raised Jesus from the dead is within me! This is another truth that I never really “got” until recently when Pastor Tim taught on this in a sermon, and I’ve been saved and spirit-filled for more than 25 years (since I was 13). PRAISE GOD AND AMEN!
So, I understand the House wants to “pass” the health care deform reform bill without actually voting on the whole bill, using a measure called the Slaughter Rule, or Deem and Pass, which sounds like Demon Pass. I don’t have time to go into all the details, but I will say I am so angry at the wholesale slaughter of the Constitution that our congress and president are undertaking that I just want to spit. They’re so determined to shove this up our proverbial behinds whether we the people want it or not, and most of us don’t, which was made clear with the rise of the Tea Party movement and the town hall meetings last August, but they’re not listening and I don’t think they really care. They’re willing to sell us all into slavery to pay for this too, in the form of more taxes and amassing more debt.
I stepped away from my computer for a few minutes this earlier this afternoon and didn’t lock my bedroom door. While I was downstairs, Angela, one of my 3-yr-old twins, got busy. I came back upstairs and ran her out of the master bathroom and sat back down at the computer. My computer, an iMac G5, had the “You’ve inserted a blank CD” window up asking what to do. I thought, “What’s that about?” and noticed a blank CD was missing off my desk and then saw a thumb drive volume mounted on my desktop. I removed the thumb drive, and pressed the Eject key. A CD tried to come out but went back in after only coming out about a half inch. I pressed Eject again and the disk came out a little more, I grasped it and saw a dime emerge at the lower end of the drive slot. That’s when I looked down at my table and noticed a handful of change I put there was missing too! I pressed the Eject key several times while grasping the CD until it finally came out. I turned off the iMac, tipped it on its side, and out dropped 2 quarters, another dime and 2 pennies. I turned the iMac on and the drive made a sound like it was trying to eject something. I tipped the computer again and nothing else came out, neither did anything rattle or clink inside. I slowly inserted the CD and it wouldn’t go all the way in, after about halfway it stopped on something toward the lower end of the drive. Drat! There’s obviously still something in there! Now I have to open up the iMac, remove the CD drive (actually it’s a Superdrive), and see if i can shake anything else out. I pray the drive mechanism isn’t damaged which would call for a replacement.
When I was 3 years old I stuffed bobby pins one at a time into an 8-track tape player. My parents chuckled and ribbed me about that for years afterward.
In honor of Angela, I’m posting courtesy of YouTube an American Express commercial from the ’80s featuring a toddler boy, a brand-new VCR, and oatmeal. My dad used to get a real kick out of it every time it came on, and of course it reminded my parents of the 8-track.
2009 was a tough year. It was not an understatement for me to declare that I’m still here in my previous post. I’ve been very hesitant to talk about it or blog about it. I’m not going to go into a lot of details but here’s the gist of it:
Our income took a severe hit last April (David and I are self-employed). By August we barely had enough to buy groceries and gas. By September we lost the van and by October we had to leave the house. In October while we were clearing out the house I slipped and fell and broke my left ankle. God is good though and greatly to be praised; my ankle has healed up and we’ve been provided a house to stay in and a good vehicle while we work to get our income back up again to where it was in 2008. We had a wonderful Thanksgiving and Christmas with my mother-in-law with plenty to eat and the kids made out like bandits. We learned who our real friends are and realized we have more than we thought. True friends are one of the greatest if not the greatest blessing you can receive from God.
In the midst of all this I realized my skills as a web designer and this year I’ve officially launched myself as a freelance web designer. My business website is www.melodielaylor.com.
I believe 2010 can only get better. My area just saw it’s first snowstorm in 9 years, and it’s the most snow we’ve seen in 20 years. I was used to seeing a few inches of snow every winter growing up and it was strange to have 9 years of sweater weather during what was supposed to be winter. This season has been a real winter. It was like everything had shifted out of balance. Now I feel like things are shifting back again. Praise the Lord!
My pastor is teaching a series on the anointing of the Holy Spirit. He defined the anointing as “the power of God to get results.” I realized something after meditating on that statement over and over. I realized that without “the power of God to get results” one is striving. Striving is working hard without results. To strive means to try (hard) in one’s own strength; to struggle or contend. I realized we’ve been doing things in our own strength, trying to make it on our own, doing things our way and not trusting in the Lord and seeking HIS way.
Some Scriptures to think about:
“And thou say in thine heart, My power and the might of mine hand hath gotten me this wealth. But thou shalt remember the LORD thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth, that he may establish his covenant which he sware unto thy fathers, as it is this day.” (Deuteronomy 8:17-18 KJV)
“And it shall come to pass in that day, that his burden shall be taken away from off thy shoulder, and his yoke from off thy neck, and the yoke shall be destroyed because of the anointing.” (Isaiah 10:27 KJV)
“Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts.” (Zechariah 4:6 KJV)
“I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.” (John 15:5 KJV)
Speaking for myself, I must confess that I have serious trust/control issues. It’s in my nature to be suspicious of everyone until they have EARNED my trust. I also want to be in control, even when I have things totally out of control. But I hate to be in charge! Am I mixed up or what? My motto was “Never put your trust in man but in the Lord only.” Only I haven’t been trusting the Lord either, though I thought I was. This year I’ll be working on my inner self a LOT. I forgot what it’s like to walk in the Spirit and spent several years in the flesh (or what some might call the soulish realm). I was focusing inward and on my problems instead of upward towards heaven.
I could keep going on but I’ll just conclude this post by saying that I need the anointing in every aspect of my life. Not just to be an effective Christian witness, but to be effective in my business and in my relationships as wife, mother and friend. I need the Holy Spirit by my side and filling me every day, else my spiritual tank gets empty as it had been for several years.
Hey, I’ve been really busy and a lot of change has been happening in my household, so that’s why the postings have been so sparse for a while. Yes, my poor little blog has been sorely neglected, but not forgotten, so I’m taking a few moments to post something, mainly because I’m trying out yet another WordPress plugin that I hope will post my blog posts to Facebook INCLUDING a post to my feed. The plugin I’m trying out is called WordBook, which I think I tried before in place of WPBook, but a new version came out yesterday and I’m trying it again because WPBook puts blog posts in my Facebook Boxes but doesn’t post to my feed to give all my friends a heads-up.
Anyway, I’m so glad 2009 is gone, and I have faith that 2010 will be a year of great blessing and promise. So Happy New Year everyone and God bless!
I'm a WAHM of 4 beautiful young children, giving a piece of my mind on marriage, family life, motherhood, health, nutrition, the Christian faith, homeschooling, working from home, politics, and whatever else I feel I need to speak my mind on.