Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Heart of the Home

Over the years, especially since leaving the Amish, I have often heard people express their sympathy for Amish women. Those poor overworked, under appreciated, and "gasp" submissive creatures.

I'm not saying all Amish homes are blissfully happy places, but for the most part women are very happy to have their husband as the head of the home and treat him as such, with respect and honor. They don't feel that by doing so makes them of any less importance, in fact, wives and mother's are valued, cherished, and well cared for. The husband may be the head of the home, but the wife and mother is the heart of the home. Working together as such makes a beautiful team.

Two little sayings, "If Mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy." and its close cousin, "Happy wife, happy life." meant something to us.

My mother, and later when I got married, viewed it as, since we are considered the heart of the home our moods will affect the entire family. If I stay happy, positive, and joyfully go about my life the family is a happy one. If I'm not happy it rubs off on everyone else and an entire day can be ruined with grouchiness.

It wasn't until after we had left the Amish that I realized not everyone views those two sayings the same. Someone mentioned that her husband had bought something for her that she wanted even though he didn't really think it was wise, and then quipped, "But you know, happy wife, happy life!"

It made me blink a little, up until then I hadn't thought of twisting that to make it sound as if my husband is responsible for keeping me happy in order to make his life happy.

I still choose to view those sayings as a motivation to stay cheerful even when not everything is looking like roses and sunshine, rather than using them as a threat to get what I want.


  1. We have very similar opinions on this topic. I am actually very happy that my husband is filling his God-ordained role as leader as our home and family. I find a lot of peace and comfort in knowing that he is the leader, and a leader that seeks God, at that.

  2. I have heard so many young women say that they would not like to have a husband whom they would have to treat as the head of the household. For me, it would have been a blessing when I was young myself. I was widowed with a toddler and a new-born and became the head of the household, bread winner, home maker, child rearer and everythhing else, when I was 24.
    At the same time, my father became seriously ill and I was suddenly my parents' long-distance support too.

    Even setting aside the Biblical expectations of spousal responsibilities, I can tell you that having to be head of the household as well as a caring mother and daughter is extremely tough. I have no idea why young women would think having a loving husband who made some of the decisions that affect a family could ever be anything other the perfect.

  3. I couldn't agree more with this. I feel as a mother, we are the biggest cheerleader as well !! I also feel the Momma can start the day off perfect by her outlook and mood !!! Everyone goes to the Mommy for everything, and, I just feel that we have the family in the palm of our hands, and heart !!! Daddys have their roles as well, and their hugs and love matter so much as well.. No matter what it is the team work behind a happy life. The good times and the bad, it's all how it is handled together. The husbands are the leaders and providers for most hopefully. God is good my friend xoxo Happy day to you :):)

  4. Yeah, I'm not into the submissive thing. If people want to do that, cool, but it's not for me. It really wouldn't make sense in my household anyway. It's my house (the deed says so). I'm the breadwinner. He has a job, but it pays half what mine does, so while he contributes to the mortgage, big expenditures like putting in a new air conditioner (soon!) come from my accounts. I certainly ask him for his advice when making decisions, because we believe a marriage should be between equal partners.

    Fun thing: because we're Quakers and therefore believe in total equality of the sexes, he saw no reason to ask my dad before asking me to marry him. Or, more accurately, he felt it would be completely inappropriate to do so, for why should any man have any say over my decision to marry? My dad (not a Quaker) feels the opposite.

  5. While some people would not see it from the outside, I absolutely consider my husband to be the head of our home. Like Jenann, I was a do-it-all mom for several years, and relinquishing the reins was quite a relief. Still, we treat each other as equals, and since our taste are so alike, we automatically agree on things without even discussing them.

    My mother, on the other hand, was a classic example of "if Momma Ain't Happy". Unfortunately, she was quixotic and unpredictable, so keeping her happy was not easy. Even my dad referred to her as "She Who Must Be Obeyed".

  6. I love this post. I totally agree with you about the husband being the head of the home and the wife the heart of it. I try so often to make sure that my disposition is a sunny one, because attitudes are contagious things. =) Blessings and Sunshine, Valerie

  7. I love this post. It is interesting how differant our society views it. Our neighbor, the husband, loves his wife so much. They have been together for over 20 years and I will never forget the way he held her hand and look of concern as we drove to the hospital (they are amish). I pray my husband and I will have the same love and respect for each other.

    The hardest part is that now so many men do not know how to 'lead'. They have never seen it before or done it themselves. Of course this is where a praying wife steps in!

  8. I SO agree with you! We raised our children in this manner as well and have no regrets - not one! I even "gave up" nursing school so my husband could have a career in Environmental Law Enforcement. Prayer led us through all of our days - some days were more difficult than others, but the path was always in front of us. Submission didn't hurt, in fact, it helped us and continues to help us live our lives as we believe God has planned :-) Looking back, I'm glad I didn't go to nursing school, as I had a very rewarding career working in our children's school as a teacher's aide, and since I have several years of college, I am now a substitute for teachers, assistants and aides, as well. I'm theoretically "retired" but love the opportunities the Lord has laid before me! My submission first to the Lord, included being submissive to my husband and it hasn't been painful, yet!

  9. Loved this post and the comments that supported it. God's way is always best, always perfect. I once heard submission defined as "ducking so that God can hit your husband".

  10. I laughed when I read the previous comment by nolefan! We, my hubby, and I feel the same as you do. I also "gave up" my career to get married and have children but I have never, ever regretted it for one moment. Hubby is definitely the head of our house. I know that he would lay down his life for me if necessary so I have absolutely NO problem submitting to him.

  11. Another reason I admire the amish. So many men I am familiar with use the Scriptures to lord over their wifes, but forget to love them as Christ loves the church. I agree with what you have said here Mary Anne. Blessings friend


Thank you so much for taking time to comment. I love hearing your thoughts.