I recently read Becoming a Titus 2 Woman by Martha Peace and last night I finished a class on Discipleship and Mentoring at Southern Seminary. Titus 2:3-5 says "Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled." Did you catch that? The older women are to teach the younger women:
- To love their husbands
- To love their children
- To be self-controlled
- To be pure
- To be a worker at home
- To be kind
- To be submissive to her own husband
What a huge responsibility we as women have to teach other women!!! One morning a week I join several other young mothers at Mom2Mom at my local church. We don't eat when we get together (though I wish we did!), we don't play games, we don't do crafts - we get discipled. True discipleship is when biblical truth is being taught from one person to another. It is here that I see Titus 2:3-5 being fleshed out. It is here that I have the privilege every week to hear a different speaker challenge me to be a godly Christian, wife and mother. To further explain what we do at Mom2Mom let me list out each week's topic for this semester.
Week One: Our Responsibility & High Calling as Wives and Mothers
Week Two: Communicating With Your Spouse Through Conflict
Week Three: Creating Themes for Direction and Focus
Week Four: How to Share Your Faith and Model a Heart for Advancing the Kingdom
Week Five: Disciplining Your Children
Week Six: Culture Wars - Training Your Children to Think Biblically
Week Seven: Cultivating a Heart of Contentment
Week Eight: Raising Masculine Sons and Feminine Daughters
Week Nine: Simplicity in a Complicated World
My Discipleship and Mentoring teacher, Mrs. Cook mentioned that the "older woman" does not necessarily have to be a woman who is physically older. Sometimes it just means a woman who is more spiritually mature. Each of us is in a position to be taught something. And likewise, we are each in a position to be able to teach something. On Wednesday nights I am in a Bible study at my church. The teacher is fantastic. She knows the Word of God and it flows out of her mouth as she teaches. She is a woman of passion and conviction. The women love her class because she is a dynamic teacher and is a woman of great character and godliness. However, the teacher is the youngest woman in the class. Some of the women she leads are 10 or 20 years older than her. I love that this young woman teaches the "younger" women. Although I am older than her, she has so much to teach me!
In her book, Martha Peace states the sad truth that in most churches we do not see women taking on the responsibility to teach younger women. She gives several suggestions as to why this is not happening:
* The older women were never taught when they were young
* Some may be vain and not want to be considered in the older woman category
* Others may wrongly believe that once their children are grown and out of the home they have done their part and have no further responsibility
* Their lives reflect a feminist viewpoint of seeking fulfillment and identity from more education or career
* Others selfishly put all their time and energy into their own children and grandchildren and so they do not reach out to anyone else
* Many believe that it is not their place to be involved with other women in such a personal way
* The older woman may be afraid the younger woman will be offended or react angrily
She concludes the paragraph by stating, "I do not know all the reasons but I do know that in most of the churches I visit, the younger women are begging for godly, older, mature women to help them."
I can certainly relate to that last line! As a young Christian in my late teens I desperately wanted a godly woman to invest in me and mentor me. I memorized Proverbs 31 and read all kinds of books on being a godly woman because I did not have a godly woman in my life. God answered my prayers when my best friend's mother, Nancy Lunney, took an interest in me. She was a gift from God and a real life example to me. He sent others to: friends, pastor's wives and co-workers. I am so thankful for these women who applied Titus 2:3-5 to their life and ministry.
If you're the older woman, be assured that there are younger women around you who could use your help and wisdom. They need to know what it looks like to live a life of godliness. But don't just let them observe. Intentionally find a younger woman you can disciple. If you're a younger woman, be thankful when another takes an interest in you and has enough boldness and courage to share with you. We are in the Body of Christ together. Let's use our gifts to teach, challenge and encourage one another.