i just read through the passage you mentioned, looked up some words for the original greek in my concordance, and did a bit of thinking.
i guess my first thought is this:
are the younger women (who are to be taught by the older women) married women–with children?
phrases like “love their husbands,” “love their children,” “obedient to their own husbands” (vs. 4-5) cause me to think that.
so… does that mean that these verses aren’t directly for single girls? i’m not implying that older ladies can’t be/shouldn’t be examples for younger ones, however.
nevertheless, if these verses are indeed intended more specifically for married women, then i don’t see how they can be used (especially the phrase “keepers at home”) to support not sending a girl off to college for further training. unless, that is, the girl is married right out of high school.
my concordance states that the phrase “keepers at home” means “domestically inclined” or “a good housekeeper.”
for me, a domestically inclined person is one who likes life at home. or if it means to be a good housekeeper, then i guess that would mean that you keep things tidy and in order in the place you call home?
in regards to these verses and a university education, i think that it’s possible to have studied and to also be domestically inclined/a good housekeeper.
i think that the problems just start when one’s studies or career takes priority over the home and one’s responsibilities there. this is not inevitable, however. and there are probably some women who can juggle something like that a lot better than others.
just as an aside (and not to get away from the original passage), it’s interesting to see that the proverbs 31 woman participated in activities which took place outside the home.
The sad thing is that while I am at school, most of the Titus 2 teaching I get is from the internet, via blogs and other websites.
I have always thought since I am considered a younger woman my role in that verse is to listen to the older women teach…whatever that subject might be. I am not married but maybe will be someday. Then there are other things that are universally “woman things” that younger women can learn a lot about from someone who has already been there.
If anyone has been around older women for any amount of time, most often, everything that comes out of their mouth you can learn from, even if it was not to do. They are always giving advice and telling what they used to do.
Still gathering my thoughts, but I think it’s important to consider the culture of the time as well… I think it is always a good idea to listen to those older and wiser than you, and it is a responsibility of older, wiser women to make themselves able to younger women (I think this side of the equation gets overlooked at times).
However the emphasis on family probably could also be a natural out-flowing of the fact that most women likely were married at the time. Anyone have marriage statistics from the time? 😉 So it would be very natural to touch on this as primary, but I don’t think it excludes single women, either older or younger, from the standards of this passage. Older women are also to teach younger ones “to live wisely and be pure, to take care of their homes, to do good”, and certainly singles can do this as well.
And why can’t married women who haven’t started families yet go to college or finish what they’ve started? I think it’s a great time to go to college! (right Liz? 😉
In college, I had a lot of formal discipleship relationships with people on campus. We sat down and talked about life, etc. We were able to encourage and challenge one another, but I didn’t experience true Titus 2 mentoring until I joined a small church my senior year where all the women opened their homes to me, invited me over, etc. I watched young mothers and older mothers parent. I watched the way they treated their husbands. I observed their joy in making their homes lovely and comfortable. That was true mentoring, even if it wasn’t formal! I learned so much from those ladies…
When I was a young mom and my husband was stationed in Germany, I got to know some of the ladies in the Bible study at the post chapel. A couple of them have left lasting impressions.
One of them who was about 10-15 years older than me opened her home for meals, coffee, Bible study, and fellowship. She inspired me so with her ability to provide background ambience that made everyone feel comfortable and at-home. She facilitated fellowship, if you will, and ever since then I have had the same goal, that of providing the atmosphere in my home that allows for others to have the same experience I had in her home.
I also was greatly influenced, as a new mom, by some of the Christian women writers of the early seventies, particularly Anne Ortlund. (I just picked up Children are Wet Cement to reread the other day and realized how much my parenting style has been like hers in many ways!) Its a funy thing but you can be surrounded by all sorts of godly Christian women in your church or school and yet God might speak through those you will never know personally!
As I have been rereading Anne ortlund’s books, it occured to me that I had never thanked her for her inspiration in my life at a time I really needed to be inspired. So I wrote her a letter and have received a handwritten personal response.
She is in her 80’s now but I detect the same sparkle that I saw in her earlier day of writing.
Just an encouragement today to anyone reading to express gratefulness to those who have had the same influence in your life.
This is a great discussion……personally, and this might just be my attitude at this time, but I find the “problem” with Titus 2 to be the lack of willingness or oppurninty of all the parties to “teach” mentor, whatever word you want to use. I myself, am of the “younger married women” qualification. I don’t know, IRL, any women, that either I would want to “teach me” (as in they have a very different lifestyle) or are willing (as in they seem too busy with there own life to reach out to mine. On the other hand, I would LOVE to have a young college student, married or un married, that I could take under my wing, maybe I have something to offer. What I dont’ know is how to go about building that kind of relationship. I think that a women that is older/more experienced than me might feel the same way, and that is why I don’t have a realtionship like that……
How would you reach out to someone, in a Titus 2 fashion?–>