Are You Worthy Of The Calling
My church is currently teaching on biblical manhood and womanhood in our Sunday school classes. Titus 2 is the most common text for what biblical womanhood is to be. Older women are to be engaged in a training process with the younger women in their lives and churches. It is our responsibility to raise a generation of sensible, disciplined, prudent, wise, discreet, restrained women who are committed to doing God’s will. This is a tremendous challenge. It is an incredible calling.
If we are to have such an opportunity, it means we must develop relationships with the younger women. A training process implies relationship; ongoing relationship and responsibility, confrontation, and affirmation.
We are to use the wisdom and life experience we have to teach the common sense stuff of life; the normal processes of having right and biblical priorities, thinking right, making sound judgment, and applying biblical wisdom.
Is it possible to teach what you do not possess?
If you are going to teach others these important things, you had better be sure you both possess and practice them. Here are a few questions to get you started: Are your judgments based on biblical principles and reverence for the Lord? Do you have common sense? Do you think rightly? Where are your thoughts focused? What are your priorities? Do you struggle with pervasive evil thoughts? Are you secretly bitter and angry? Do you have a hard time controlling your tongue? Are you known as a gossip? A liar?
The answers to these questions are revelations of what your heart is focused on. Your heart is the inner you, the immaterial part of you that includes your thoughts, beliefs, desires, will, emotions, and so on. The Bible says your heart reflects and reveals what the “real you” is truly like. It acts like a mirror and shows you the what is contained within. The virtues contained on the inside will overflow out of your mouth and be evident in your life.
If you want to become a godly woman, the inside work must come first. This kind of change is done by the Holy Spirit; it is not something you can manufacture yourself. It is God’s influence in your heart that cultivates the kind of response that is called for in being an older woman with influence. Such outward actions of holiness are dependent upon an inner condition of holiness. It begins in your thought life. Deal with your thoughts, taking them captive (2 Corinthians 10:5) and giving no place for sin to grow. What you do with your thoughts will determine if you’re the real thing or not. You can certainly fool those around you by pretending to be someone you are not, at least for a time. If you are not cultivating godly thoughts and addressing those thoughts that are sinful, it will come out at some point. You can’t fool God.
Growing In Holiness
If you are already considered a woman of wisdom, this does not mean you have “arrived,” nor does it mean that if you cannot claim such attributes that you are off the hook! We are all to be women who continue to grow in faith and love. We are to be modest and self-restrained; working at becoming self-controlled in our lives. Moderation and restraint in our affections are the key (I think) to personal discipline. We should always be growing in holiness (1 Peter 1:16) and this means we are leaving behind the unholy habits and practices of the sinful nature. We have to make a break from our old cherished lusts and desires and begin to live anew in righteousness and holiness.
For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men, instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus, who gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds. Titus 2:11-14 (ESV)
This is a high and holy calling we have been given. We dare not take it lightly or fail to respond. God has given us this responsibility and we had better be about His business.