Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Being a Helpmeet

You know when you have those times where there seems to be a theme in all you experience? Being a better helpmeet to my husband has been a theme for me lately. Shirley Solis of Lifetime Books gave me the CD of her lecture on the topic and we listened to it on the way home form Missouri.
I am also working my way through the Anne of Green Gables series. I am in the middle of Anne of Ingleside. Anne has to live with Gilbert's aunt who has come for a short visit but it has not been so short. This aunt "poisons" the home and makes everyone miserable. Gilbert does not do what several wish he would - kick her out. "He says he could never look himself in the face again if he turned his own flesh and blood out of doors", even though she has plenty of money and a home of her own. She is mean to the children and the household help and ruins every potential nice time together. She constantly complains and undermines Anne and makes her feel as if she doesn't belong in her own home. What would I do in those circumstances? Unless God had really got a hold of me, I can tell you it would be the exact opposite of what Anne does. What does Anne do? Does she explode with anger at Gilbert? Does she disrespect his spinelessness and unwillingness to stand up to his aunt and protect his family? Does she take matters into her own hands? No. She defers to Gilbert's sense of honor. She chides herself for complaining of such "little things" and feeling sorry for herself. Instead she embraces compassion for the friendless woman and ends up giving her a surprise birthday party. God blessed Anne in the end because the aunt ends up offended over the birthday party and finally leaves. But in her leaving, Anne can rest with a clear conscience and the knowledge that she chose Christian love.

With a little more free time this week I decided to borrow my sister's copy of Debi Pearl's Created to Be His Help Meet. It is such a chore for me to read these kind of books but I decided to give it a try. I've read the first few chapters this afternoon and it immediately put me in mind of the character of Anne. She demonstrates the qualities of a helpmeet with a joyful, merry and thankful heart.

All of these things sure shine the light where improvement is needed in my character. It's one thing to read these things and gain fresh inspiration to do good, but it's another to form habits that last long after the books are forgotten.

My middle name is Ann without the e. I need to become more like the "Anne with an e".
**Update: A funny note. Tonight I sat on the porch swing reading to Annalise the next story in James Herriot's Treasury for Children. The story we are on is called The Market Square Dog and in it the country vet and his wife are all dressed up in their best clothes about to leave on a special rare date out when a policeman comes and brings a hurt dog. When Mr. Herriot apologizes to his wife because the care of the dog will prevent them from their plans, she graciously reassures him that she understands. And here is a quote from the story:
"By the time we had finished, it was too late to go out anywhere, but Helen was quite cheerful. 'We can still have our picnic,' she said. We carried the sleeping dog out to the garden and laid him on a mat on the lawn so that we could watch him as he came round from the anaesthetic.
Out there in the old high-walled garden the sun shone down on the flowers and the apple trees. Helen put on her fancy hat again and I put my smart jacket back on and as we sat there, enjoying the good things from the picnic basket , we felt that we were still having a day out."
Isn't that a beautiful example of a good wife bringing comfort to her husband and being thankful and cheerful and not pouting and scolding and feeling sorry for herself? Isn't it funny that this was in the story I read to my little girl tonight right after I wrote the above post? Hmmm.


daisyblend said...

Good stuff, MamaLion. Thanks for sharing. I've been noticing a string like that in my own life the last couple weeks. Wherever I turn, whatever I read or whoever I talk to, there's a theme. God is speaking to me on something in my heart he wants to touch. Isn't it great to have such a father?

the {{screaming *penguin}} said...

I love James Herriot. One of my favorite authors. When we first started listening to them on tape, Luke learned his first cuss words... My parents were distressed, but Luke was thrilled, as I'm sure we all are when we first learn a few choice words