Note: This is part of the Fight Like a Girl Series. Other posts are found under the series tag.
At 14, I dreamed of a big career in a big city 700
miles to the north. I didn't understand the bemused smile my mother
usually wore as I spouted off my grand plans. I had my life mapped out, but I didn't need that map. Although I anticipated having a 10-hour drive to my parents' home, it takes a mere 10 minutes.
is why I, too, wear a bemused expression when my daughter reels off
her great plans for her big life in a city 500 miles to the south. I
tell her something my mother wasn't able to tell me, The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps. (Proverbs 16:9)
Still, I'm glad my girl has big dreams. Who am I
to say that they have not been given to her by God? Her preferred
career would give her an opportunity to minister to people in need. It
may be that He has a place for her in this particular field for just
It seems the blogosphere has recently been
inundated with posts about Biblical womanhood and complementarianism.
(For the record, I am a complementarian.) I don't want to add to the clamor and I'm not responding to any post I've read. I do want to encourage other mothers to fight for their girl's dreams, no matter what they are.
girls dream of impacting the world for Christ through their homes; they
have a God-given desire to marry, have children, and work faithfully,
full-time at home. This is a noble calling of the Lord and if it is the
call our daughter feels, we should not hesitate to offer our support and
encouragement in that direction. We should teach her the art of
homemaking, procure or provide lessons in different domestic skills, and
instruct her in the values and benefits of being a stay-at-home wife
Other girls dream of
living out the Gospel in the workplace. This, too, can be a noble
calling from the Lord. Our society benefits when Christian women serve
others through their careers. Our support and encouragement is no less
important if this is our daughter's inclination. In addition to
educating her about her responsibilities as a wife and mother, we can
look for opportunities to learn about the benefits - and the pitfalls -
of a specific career. We can help her be as prepared and knowledgeable
In short, we should exhort her to work heartily, as for the Lord (Colossians 3:23) in her chosen vocation. Even if she chooses a path that is not our own.
should also be honest about our own calling. My daughter has seen the
positives and negatives that accompany having a career outside of the
home. She also realizes that our home and family mean more to me than my
job. I have taught her that a woman has an incredible opportunity to
minister to and bless her family by providing home-cooked meals and
keeping a clean home. As much as I have tried to model that for her, she has seen how difficult it is
to provide these things when employed outside of the home. She knows that stay-at-home mothers face challenges as well. Whatever choice she makes will require sacrifice. Neither situation is
perfect, because we live in a fallen world. It is imperative that she realize that.
Finally, we should accept the fact that we don't know what God has planned for our daughter's future. He may call her into the mission field in Africa or in the local hospital. Perhaps
she will remain single. Perhaps she will have a husband but no
children. I don't know if God has given my daughter this particular ambition
because He's going to allow her to find the cure for cancer or to
prepare her to homeschool the one who will. I only know that I will rejoice in whatever
blessing the Lord bestows upon her, whether it is a big career or a big
family. If she seeks to do everything to the glory of the Lord (1 Cor.
10:31), how could I ask for more?