Homemaking is often a "hidden" art. If you need accolades or frequent encouragement or the world's admiration, then homemaking is unlikely to satisfy. Being a "keeper at home" (Titus 2:5) is to do valuable work, but to do it mostly unseen.
One of my daughters told someone who inquired about her career plans that she hoped to be a stay-at-home wife and mother. The response was, "Awwww..." (as in "that's so cute"). If she had said that she wished to be a school teacher or a nurse or a marine biologist, would the reply be the same? I doubt it.
But that's okay! Having a vision of the scope of your work and its inestimable value causes the fact that it is "hidden" to be unimportant. Being a homemaker is fulfilling if done with purpose and creativity!
One of my favorite passages in Chapter 2 of The Hidden Art of Homemaking is this:
People so often look with longing into a daydream future, while ignoring the importance of the present. We are all in danger of thinking, "Some day I shall be fulfilled. Some day I shall have the courage to start another life which will develop my talent", without ever considering the very practical use of that talent today in a way which will enrich other people's lives, develop the talent, and express the fact of being a creative creature.
I love this thought! It confirms what I believe about teaching my daughters in the art of homemaking. Use your creativity now--to serve your family, to serve your friends, to serve your fellow man--as you have opportunity.
I have three daughters at different stages of life. Kristin, my oldest, is married and is a homeschooling mother to five. My second daughter, Kati, is 19 and lives at home. Bekah, the youngest, just turned twelve. And each one of my girls is a creative homemaker! Although the younger two do not have their own homes, they are (as Edith said) using their "talent today in a way which will enrich other people's lives."
When Bekah asks me to teach her to make banana bread "so the bananas will not go to waste." When she searches through cookbooks and says, "Let's make this stuffed crust veggie pizza," and adds the ingredients to my grocery list, and then chops and slices and rolls out dough. When Kati makes two loaves of rosemary bread, one for dinner, one to give away. When she takes on part time work, tending to the needs of an elderly man. When Bekah brings in a bouquet of flowers from the yard and arranges them in a vase. When the girls have creative ideas for holiday celebrations or for decorating their rooms. When they create homemade gifts for birthdays and Christmas. All of these things warm my mother's heart, for they are using their homemaking talents in ways that "enrich other people's lives."
Hidden? Perhaps. But not from the One who sees.
If you're interested in this book discussion, you may read along as I usually do
(click ~here~ for all the posts in the discussion),
or join in the discussion yourself!
(Click ~here~ for details on how to participate.)