Monday, September 7, 2015

Men At Home

Without the will, marriage is a mockery; without emotion, it is a drudgery. You need both." 

- Ravi Zacharias

In his beautiful, rich book, A Promise Kept, the late Robertson McQuilkin recounts a humorous but poignant story. (You can read more about Robertson McQuilkin here.)

McQuilkin was caring for his wife, Muriel in their home. He had resigned as President of Colombia Bible College in order to be her full-time caregiver, a conviction which he believed the Lord had personally placed upon his heart. 

Muriel had been diagnosed with Alzheimer's at a comparably young age and would often have accidents as her disease progressed and her memory worsened. She came to the point where she could not control her bodily functions and went to the bathroom on the floor. 

McQuilkin recalls cleaning the mess up, while at the same time trying to keep Muriel from "helping" him to clean (he was concerned that she would slip and hurt herself.) As he was cleaning, McQuilkin, who had been listening to a Charles Swindoll broadcast, suddenly heard Swindoll say "Men, are you at home? I mean, really, at home?" And McQuilkin, seeing the humor in the situation, replied, "Yeah, Chuck, really I am; do I ever wish I weren't?"

Men at home. 

And so often we hear of women at home. Women who speak glowingly of their husbands and their children. Women who value the title of wife and mother. Women who build their lives around their spiritual calling to fulfill the feminine roles that the Lord has entrusted them with. 

This is evidenced in the subject matter of many, many Christian women's blogs. Often, the focus is upon marriage, children, and other homemaking interests. Not always, but often.

It is a God-honoring focus. Women seeking to fulfill their God-given roles in the unique and personal ways that the Lord is leading them to fulfill them. 

But men... men at home? 

This is something that has been upon my heart, especially in light of the Josh Duggar scandal, as well as other recent incidences. 

Are our men really at home? 

And some of them are. Definitely are. Their hearts are "at home," serving Jesus in whatever vocation He has called them to, supporting their wives and children, loving the Lord with all their hearts and leading their families in worship and praise of Him. 

But we have to admit, if we really want to be honest before the Lord, some of them are not. 

And we love them, and we pray for them, and we want the best for them through the Lord, but their hearts, as it stands, are not "at home."

We want our men to be at home. With us. With our children. With their God. But they are not. Something else captivates them, whether it be work, a hobby, another "love." 

Something else captivates their hearts. And they are not at home. Not at rest. Not at peace with God and with their family. 

They may give lip service, but don't really care about spiritual matters. Or perhaps they have grown cold towards their First Love.

They are not at home. 

There are other men who give all the appearance of being at home. They attend church regularly. They fulfill their duties. They help around the house. They do what is required of them, and perhaps beyond what is required. 

But their hearts are not at home. Not really. Their heart is bound to their electronic device, or their social media, or their work. They are actors but not real men at home with beating hearts of love and devotion and joy and selfless sacrifice. 

They are lukewarm. 

A part that always makes me chuckle in the Disney movie The Aristocats involves the English geese and the male cat, O'Malley.  The female geese question whether or not the cat is married, and he evades the question. One of the geese looks him squarely in his shifty eyes and states--"You either are or you're not," To which he replies, "Alright, then; I'm not." 

We need men who are at home. Men who love the Lord with all their hearts and souls and minds and strength. Men who lead their families; men who take the hard, costly path of obedience; men who follow in the footsteps of our precious Savior. 

There are men at home.

I have seen them in action. I have read of them, watched them, looked up to them, appreciated their devotion, commitment and love.  

I thank God for the men who are truly at home.

What about those who are not?

The answer is not manipulation. It is not ungodly pleading. The answer is not to ignore the problem, to falsely convince oneself or others that a man is "at home" when he is not. 

The answer is prayer. It is fasting. It is pleading with God. 

The answer is surrender. Entrusting oneself and one's family over to a merciful and loving Heavenly Father. Entrusting the situation over to His love, knowing that He will work good from it. 

We all struggle with this malady. Sometimes we are not "at home." We are not in the center of God's will. We are running, either physically or mentally away from it; we are wasting the life that the Lord has given to us on things that do not matter. We are not "at home." 

May He have mercy upon us. May He work in our minds and our hearts and our homes to be faithful to Him, to love Him with our heart, soul, mind and strength. 

May He encourage men to become true men of God, leading their families in the ways of the Lord. May He strengthen women to be the discerning support of the head, praying, encouraging, strengthening.

May our families be built up in Him. 

Men at home. Women at home. Children at home. In Him. Because of Him. Only by His grace.

At home. 

You might find me on these link-ups:

Strangers and Pilgrims on EarthInspire Me MondayThe Modest MomWhat Joy is Mine, SDG Gathering, A Mama's Story, Mom's the Word, Rich Faith Rising, Time Warp Wife, Cornerstone Confessions, Mom's Morning Coffee, Motivate and Rejuvenate MondaysSo Much at Home, Raising Homemakers, Hope in Every SeasonA Wise Woman Builds Her Home, Woman to Woman Ministries, Whole-Hearted Home, Testimony TuesdayTell His StoryA Soft Gentle Voice, My Daily Walk in His Grace, Women With Intention WednesdaysMessy Marriage, The Charm of Home, Graced Simplicity, Theology ThursdaysChildren Are A Blessing, Mittenstate Sheep and Wool, Imparting Grace, Preparedness Mama, A Look at the Book, Essential Thing Devotions, Thought Provoking ThursdayEvery Day JesusCount My Blessings, Christian Mommy Blogger, Renewed Daily, Soul SurvivalGood Morning MondaysThe Weekend BrewBlessing Counters Link PartyThe HomeAcre HopMommy Moments Link UpGrace and Truth LinkupFaith Filled FridaySaturday Soiree Blog PartyTell It To Me TuesdaysSHINE Blog Hop, Faith and  Fellowship Blog HopMotivate and Rejuvenate Monday Link-UpA Little R&R WednesdaysTGI Saturdays Blog HopTotally Terrific TuesdayRaRaLinkup


  1. I so love the testimony of Robert McQuilkin -- and that quote from Ravi Zacharias is pure gold.

    1. Yes; I agree, Michele! McQuilkin has such a powerful testimony; his love for his wife truly mirrored the love of Christ.

      Ravi's words always touch me; the Lord has truly filled him with truth and grace.

      Have a blessed week! :-)

  2. It's such a blessing to our family to have a man who is really "at home." Even when he is at the office working, we know he is doing so for us.

    1. That is a tremendous blessing! May the Lord continue to strengthen and protect your precious family.

      The Lord bless you!

  3. Bekki, thank you for sharing such a beautiful word picture of what it means for any of us to be truly "at home". For by being truly "at home" we are emulating the attitude of our hearts in our Heavenly Home.

    I was convicted by your words, "We all struggle with this malady. Sometimes we are not "at home." We are not in the center of God's will. We are running, either physically or mentally away from it; we are wasting the life that the Lord has given to us on things that do not matter. We are not "at home."

    Thank you for spurring me on. :-)

    1. Oh, you're welcome, Karen! These are thoughts that I've been thinking and praying about, too--am I "at home?" What a truly blessed place to be!

      The Lord give you His grace and glory, dear Karen. :-)

  4. I couldn't agree more. Men need to be present at home, not just in body. Yet, many are as you stated, but our culture is slowly taking the role of men away and it is evident in our homes, schools and schools. Great reminder how much men need to step up and be Men. Although, we women, in a day of social media (myself included) need to do the same. From Women With Intention

    1. Yes; I agree with you completely, Michelle. Elisabeth Elliot wrote a wonderful book called The Mark of a Man--you have probably read it. It speaks so beautifully to this topic.

      May we strive, one Christ-focused home at a time, to fix our eyes upon the Author and Finisher of our faith, and lay aside every weight and the sin that so easily entangles. His grace is enough.

      May the Lord deeply bless you, Michelle. :-)

  5. I had not heard that story but enjoyed it so much! Visiting today from Wedded Wednesday. ♥

    1. I'm glad that you enjoyed it, Nannette! McQuilkin truly has a beautiful testimony.

      May the Lord bless you richly!

  6. My husband had another love (porn) and I tried so hard to be better than the porn and to yell, scold, nag. It never worked. Thankfully, God brought me to a place of surrender and in that, I let God be the Savior and helped as HE led.

    1. Yes, so true Jen. It really comes down to surrender, and as you said, letting Him lead . . . He is faithful--and that doesn't ease the pain or the difficulty, but His grace always come through like the sunlight through a dark cloud.

      May God bless you and protect your marriage--may it be a beautiful testimony of His grace.

  7. Oh, Rebekah, what a beautiful, grace-filled call to action for men and for women as well. Thank you!!!
    Thanks for linking up with Grace & Truth. <3

  8. Hi, Rebekah! :) I think this is my first time stopping by your blog. Another Grace & Truth hostess sent me your way. These words here are the epitome of what we should be all about - truth tempered by grace, grace grounded in truth. Thank you for confronting a tough issue with such a gentle spirit. May we all be "at home!"
    Jen @ Being Confident of This

    1. Jen, thank you for your encouragement; you poured grace into my heart today. May the Lord work in and through us His power and strength to live and move in Him!

      Have a blessed weekend!

  9. This is such a fantastic, gracious and honoring post to put the situation into perspective. Thank you immensely for sharing this with us at Grace & Truth! I am so excited that God prompted you to read it. We need to see more just like this and I'm excited to in the future. You are a vital part of our community and I'm blessed to be able to read your beautiful words! Thank you!

    1. Thank you, Holly; you are a great encouragement to me! I am so grateful to be a part of the link-up! May the Lord bless us and strengthen us in Him! Have a wonderful weekend! :-)