(No, not me - a Brazilian in front of her old-age home)
But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine: That the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience. The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things; That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed. (Titus 2:1-5)
I was thinking about Titus 2 this morning. I usually refer to what an aged woman should be focused upon. When I read the first five verses, I was struck by the difference in length of instruction. Looking closer, both have an equal amount:
Sober; holy behaviour
Grave; not false accusers
Temperate; not given to much wine
Sound in faith, charity, patience; teachers.
It's what we are to teach that there is a longer explanation.
Teach the young women to be sober: I don't believe this means "somber," either. "In character; moderate; realistic; serious; not playful; not passionate; cool; self-controlled," doesn't do it justice, either. We aged women are playful and we are passionite. There are times to be so. Learning when to be realistically serious is a very important lesson.
to love their husbands: Most people would think this doesn't need to be taught, that brides love their husbands enough to marry them, after that it's easy. Not so much. The tired, perhaps dirty, provider that comes home from work hardly resembles that sweet-talking suitor that promised the moon. And, the moon doesn't appear in their window every night either. That provider is the husband that needs love more than the suitor.
to love their children: Again, that seems evident in the love of that miracle brought home from the hospital. But what about the rebellious pre-teen who thinks total freedom is just around the corner and wants to start practicing right now? Not your child? Some sterotypes aren't, but most likely that child will find ways -- maybe even look for them -- designed to seaparate.
To be discreet: Drama. Gossip. The word spreads, lives are impacted. Television shows draw us in with drama. We need to be realistically serious and remove ourselves from the drama bit (working with teens brings that one home!!) and teach discretion.
Chaste: Nothing breaks up a marriage quicker than being unchaste. Eyes on the goal -- grow closer in marriage through growing closer to God.
Keepers at home: Does that mean staying at home? Not necessarily. But the home must be kept, clean, warm, inviting, filling. The place where family dwells and grows. It is a wife's focus and an extremely important calling.
good, obedient to their own husbands: That "good" covers a lot!! So does obedient to their own husbands. This husband is to love his wife as Christ loves the church, to the point of giving his life for her sake. He gives his freedom to be a provider. He remains faithful to her, never forgetting the wife of his youth. God willing, they will live together much longer than the time the live raising children. They become one, and remain so.
that the word of God be not blasphemed: All done to the glory of God, that their lives are examples of His love, that His words are shown to be true.
I really enjoy being an aged woman. I hope you look forward to it, too.