As opposed to shunning the past and labeling it “old-fashioned,” perhaps we can draw a lesson or two from what is missing in modern-day society. Despite the progressive advances in practical elements such as technology and medicine, we have somehow regressed in the fundamental nurture and development of the family unit. We have allowed the government to constitute the definition of family and it is no surprise as to why the family unit is spiraling out of control. Busy schedules, not enough quality time, and a generation of children who have a selfish sense of entitlement. What would the 1950’s family say to the family of 2016? Would they gawk at how we are walking zombies to our devices? Would they question why everyone is not present for dinner? Would they blush appallingly at the sight of a teenage girl’s immodest attire?
What would the 1950’s homemaker say about today’s family? Maybe you’re thinking “She would marvel at the crockpot” or “I bet She would be proud of how far we’ve come.” Or perhaps maybe you would be too busy judging the depth and intellect of those 1950’s housewives- women who probably would be publicly tarred and feathered by today’s feminists. But these women understood more than just how to serve the perfect meatloaf on their thoughtfully adorned table. They understood the value of family. They knew their role was to take care of the affairs of their household- to honor their husbands and care for their children.
These women embraced who they were and accepted their position with humility and grace. The family unit was strong, balanced and of solid moral compass. It’s not about wearing heels and a girdle while vacuuming- it’s about devoting ourselves to lovingly admonish our families. I’m afraid the 1950’s housewife would have a few pieces of advice for today’s mom. And no, it would probably be more profound than how to polish the silver or her secrets to the most effective method to press a shirt.
I believe the 1950’s housewife would say: “fellow wife and mother- slow down! Take time out for your children and husband. They desperately need you- to encourage them, to help them and simply love them. Carefully monitor and limit what your children are exposed to from their various media outlets (the mom’s of the 50’s did not have to worry about the explicit lyrics of the music or blatant disregard for respect, but propriety was always mindfully enforced). Make sure your family always has the opportunity to sit together for a meal to share their day, make memories and bring each other together in the way only a warm meal can. Respect your husband as the leader of your home. Make time for family devotions and conversations that provide guidance and wisdom. There will always be time for other things. Right now, focus on your family, whom God has entrusted to you. Being a homemaker is a gift and joy. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.”
The family unit is at odds with society. We are raising our children in an ever-increasing hostile world. Mothers- are we alert? Are we standing guard? Are we teaching our children the ways of God and covering them in prayer? I think women have fought so hard to not be the like the women of 1950’s, that they sacrificed all aspects, all values, all priorities to make room for new ones. But I think we have made the wrong sacrifices. Our children’s future and the future of our nation is heavily dependent upon the upbringing they receive. And it all begins at home. Let’s not allow distorted priorities and warped values to continue to dictate our lives and our families.
Abraham Lincoln once said: “America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.” Destruction within our borders, within our governing body, within our schools, within our communities and ultimately at it’s core- our families. The root of this problem goes beyond the scope of having more quality family time. It’s about intentionally fostering our children within a Christ-centered home and equipping them with boldness for what is right in the Lord’s eyes.
Maybe you could argue flaws of the women from the 1950’s, but they got something right-rather than climbing corporate ladders and proving themselves among the business men, they were intentionally rearing their children. The truth is, we don’t live in a “Leave it to Beaver” society and the attack on family has been a scheme of the emery since the dawn of time. But we can not continue to passively sit back and accept those terms. We must be watchful of our families, make them our ministry and nurture them through the Word of God.
The Humble Homemaker