Sunday, February 4

Something Worse Than White Bread

The ingredients in white bread could sound like characters in a science-fiction horror movie. What is all that stuff? It can’t be good for you. Azodicarbonamide, calcium stearoyl lactylate…… And we eat the stuff all the time. But, there’s something worse than white bread. It is the bread of idleness. That should be feared above anything white bread can do to us.

Idle: i·dled, i·dling, noun



not working or active; unemployed; doing nothing: idle workers.


not spent or filled with activity: idle hours.


not in use or operation; not kept busy: idle machinery.


habitually doing nothing or avoiding work; lazy.


of no real worth, importance, or significance: idle talk.


having no basis or reason; baseless; groundless: idle fears.


frivolous; vain: idle pleasures.


meaningless; senseless: idle threats.


futile; unavailing: idle rage.

–verb (used without object)


to pass time doing nothing.


to move, loiter, or saunter aimlessly: to idle along the avenue.

1. sluggish. Idle, indolent, lazy, slothful apply to a person who is not active. To be idle is to be inactive or not working at a job. Slothful denotes a reprehensible unwillingness to carry one's share of the burden: so slothful as to be a burden on others. 5. worthless, trivial, trifling. 7. wasteful. 11. See loiter. 13. waste.

1. busy, industrious. 5. important, worthwhile.

Proverbs 31: She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness.

Seems here that if you eat the bread of idleness that you won’t look well to the ways of your household.

I found a quote not too long ago……….Here’s to good women, may we know them, may we be them, may we raise them.

“May we raise them” is what this spill is about. Anything I say here is NOT to make the way we raise our sons look any less important, I’m just going to talk about daughters for right now.

Are you raising your daughter to be idle or industrious?

Industry: Word History: A clear indication of the way in which human effort has been harnessed as a force for the commercial production of goods and services is the change in meaning of the word industry. Coming from the Latin word industria, meaning "diligent activity directed to some purpose," and its descendant, Old French industrie, with the senses "activity," "ability," and "a trade or occupation," our word (first recorded in 1475) originally meant "skill," "a device," and "diligence" as well as "a trade."

I know none of us want daughters that don’t do their part in any given situation, but what are we doing to make sure we don’t raise sloths.

Action does not mean industry, I could be a dictionary entry.

Action: Michele can be very active and not get lots done, ……..walking in circles, piddling and having no plan but still making lots of movement does NOT mean making progress. Moving body parts does not mean industry.

Some things might be hard to detect. We go to bed at night wondering if we got ‘anything done’ that day, did we start anything? Finish anything? Make progress in any area at all?

There is something that can be detected as being frivolous, baseless, groundless, or to pass time doing nothing. No, it’s not standing on the corner watching the traffic go by. It is watching TV or playing what I call ‘electric games’. No daughter ever ‘needs’ to do these things, so they are always an option, a choice. Don’t teach your daughters that it is industry, that it IS being busy, because it isn’t.

Proverbs 22:29 Seest thou a man diligent in his business? He shall stand before kings; he shall not stand before mean men.

(Some may think, well a little doesn’t hurt them, but are you sure that it IS just a little?

I challenge you to log the time your daughter/daughters spend in front of these things.)

What does TV and these electrical games do for our daughters?

  • kills action and energy
  • kills imagination
  • kills desire to do something needful and helpful
  • fills the heart and head plumb full of things
  • takes away desire to do anything else
  • could eliminate good book reading
  • chief time waster
  • diminishes real games with with real people
  • visiting with various people vanishes
  • age appropriate toys are chunked
  • breeds lethargy

How do I know all of these things? Because we have 4 daughters. I have seen our 4 daughters go from playing outside with blankets and stuffed animals, playing games with each other, reading good books to being listless, bored and only one thing on their minds. I have seen the TV outright cause our daughters to have nothing to do. Nothing is fun anymore. That’s how I know it does all those things.

I know the ‘ease’ of saying yes to good stuff. It is ‘ease’ for the mother to say yes to daughters that want to do those ‘plugged in’ things. To say yes means a mom has 30 minutes, 90 minutes, or maybe even 2 whole hours to herself. To say yes means mom doesn’t have to look for something for the daughter/daughters to do. They have ‘something’ to do. Mom doesn’t have to look at spider books, bicycle tires or braids for a set amount of time. Now mom has some free time. Ah, now the daughters are occupied. Idle, but occupied.

Let us not think that only moms that are not Christian use the TV and other things you plug in to zippity-do-dah kids all day long. We can be guilty, too. Yes, there’s lots of good things out there for them to watch, innocent games…… but is it the ‘best’ thing for them to be doing? We keep our girls out of the public school system but allow them to watch things in our own home that we don’t want them to be a part of. We want them safe at home? Don't leave your girls to themselves.........even though they are at home.

We like to see our daughters play with their dolls, make play muffins, read recipes, sew a quilt, ride their bike, make a bouquet, crochet a doily………but we as mothers tempt them to sit in front of a screen to be idle. Why do we do this? We bring the very thing into our homes that is our biggest enemy. I have yet to hear a husband say, now you be sure to have the TV on lots today while I’m at work. Make sure the girls have lots of videos to choose from and make sure they watch them over and over again. I know how they bug you all day long, just keep the games a’goin. So, let us not blame our husbands for the time we waste all day long when they're not even home.

Pr 14:1 Every wise woman buildeth her house: but the foolish plucketh it down with her hands.

We should be causing our girls to want to follow us around, to learn the things we know, to watch the way we clean, take care of things, keep things in order and the myriad of things we do throughout the day. To do this takes time. It might take longer to hang out clothes, to put up groceries, to make out a menu, to sweep a floor, to feed the animals, to clean the garage, to go through a drawer, but if our daughters see us do it with a smile on our face, they have learned something valuable.

Don’t park them in front of the TV while you are doing these household things. Don’t allow them to be ‘occupied’ for 30 minutes every time you turn around or you will have girls that won’t want to learn that there is even joy in doing cloth diapers. Don't do work they ought to be doing. They will most happily let you do it, but who will do it when they have their own home?

Domestic girls are few and far between. Girls that want to make a haven for their husbands and kids. The world is not on our side in this matter. The world wants our girls to be like them, to do day-care, to have their own checking account and to not ‘need’ their husband. How can you be sure to have girls that turn into wives that find great joy in ‘keeping their place’? Find really good things for your daughters to do, NOW. You are the one that is to equip them. Your husband may provide for the family, but it is not his job to make sure the daughters know how to run a kitchen or sew a quilt. That is mom’s department.

So, all you have are short little girls? Then you start close to the floor. J

~~~Get some old quilt books and make coloring pages for them.

Plant radishes. They almost always grow.

Have your daughter do the toast when you have oatmeal. And don’t ‘redo’ it when she’s done.

Bake a jiffy mix muffin mix. It’s under 50cents. After she makes one and tastes it, she just might have a desire to make muffins from scratch. Let her.

Fix up a simple embroider kit for her. Let her do her favorite animal, even if it isn’t YOUR favorite.

Show her how to clean a bathroom floor with paper towels and a yummy smelling spray cleaner you picked out with each other at the Dollar Store.

Decorate the front door with something. Little girls like construction paper and glue. So should you.

Read a bird book together.

Help her write a letter to a missionary daughter.

Show them what a weed is. If you don’t know what a weed is, find out.

Then, this little short daughter turns into a tall daughter. She can now do ceiling fans and roast a turkey.

I know, I know…… say they can watch TV and play computer games AND do all of these things and grow up anyway, get married and have supper every night. Well, why handicap them?

All the things that I mentioned above take lots more time to do than to slip a dvd into a slot. Finding a ‘good’ thing for our girls to watch takes less time than making a funny looking paper plate wreath for the front door.

Don’t be a teacher of Professional Time Wasting 101, don’t co-author Being Idle For Dummies. It is up to us as moms to keep our home full of things that make a good training ground. Any of our older girls should be able to *teach* a Domestic Boot Camp without any help from us.

You will all have different kinds of girls to deal with. Ones that are excited to help with everything and are eager to learn and ones that don’t want to lift a finger to even stir in the chocolate chips. You as a mother must adjust and stay a step ahead of both kinds and all the betweens.

I had a group of teen girls over to our apartment to embroider. I was going to teach them how to do some stitches. ONE girl out of the whole group knew how to put thread into a needle. NONE of the others got past that step. There might be lots of reasons why the girls did not know how to thread a needle, just don’t let it happen to your daughter.

Our daughters can grow up to be such a blessing to us. We will watch them learn things, then we will watch them live those same things out. They won't always have mom fixing things up for them. They MUST learn it at home, not the hard way.

Our girls should never be bored. There is a world of things out there they can be taught and trained to do. Those same things will cause your daughter to want to be excited to be at home………even by herself because she has so many projects going for the good of the household. Even if it is just for her and her husband.

Decorating, reading biographies, vegetable garden, make curtains, fix a 'real' supper every night, being frugal, laundry expert, make real bread, be a good home-school teacher, get stains out, antiques, animal care, crafts, schedules, goals, card making, Bible Study, child hood illnesses, child training, library use, make some soap, can some pickles, letter writing, photography, collections, music and piano, selling their wares, parties, games, outings, foreign language, hot sauce, make jam or jelly, make a candle or a bar of soap, back yard birding, knit, real pie crusts, wreaths, crochet, recipe books.......piles of them, uses for vinegar and baking soda.

Our daughters must know the difference between Comet and Cornstarch.

Here are some random words and phrases from Proverbs 31:

Virtuous, trust, rubies, seeketh, worketh willingly, she riseth, giveth, considereth, fruit of her hands, girdeth her loins, strength, merchandise is good, hand to the poor, hands to the needy, not afraid of snow, clothed with scarlet, maketh, silk and purple, husband is knowin in the gates, maketh, selleth, delivereth, honour, openeth her mouth with wisdom, law of kindness, looketh well, children arise up and clal her blessed, praiseth, thou excellest them all, beauty is vain…….feareth the Lord, Let her own works praise her in the gates.

Let us take the time to train our daughters and not give in to ease so one day they can be a crown to their own husband and teach their daughters what they know.

Pr 12:4 A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband: but she that maketh ashamed is as rottenness in his bones.


Marcella said...

Wonderful post, Mrs. Mobunny!

Julie said...

Awesome. I started reading your blog when your daughter promoted you on her blog. I have always been impressed with how she presents herself and enjoy reading her blog, when I have some extra time.
I am a mommy to three young daughters. I did not have a mom who encouraged me to not be idle so Im learning a lot of stuff as I go. It is definatly an uphill struggle and it is that much harder because I am trying to train my girls at the same time.
Thank you so much for this post of encouragement. I would enjoy reading more about how you trained your daughters and your sons as I have two little boys coming up as well. I am always seeking wisdom from the older women out there.
Thank you again for your words of wisdome here.

Melissa said...

I thoroughly enjoyed that post!What a good devotion. I have 4 children. 2girls-2boys. And you are sooo right in all you said. No wonder Olivia rises up to call you blessed!
I am Melissa Smith. My husband pastors an IFB church in Arab, Al. I would love to sit and talk with you for a short while--to glean from your wisdom.

Anonymous said...

May I mention an idea?
My daughter Lauren is 10 and she has been saved. Her life shows fruit and she is faithful. We homeschool to like you said.. keep them from the filth of the world as best we can.. well, in our church there is no little girls her age. Though her 5 yr.old sister is her best friend whom she loves very much- I know that she would enjoy a pen pal that is raised in a family of like faith such as your daughter(the younger) please e mail me to let me know what you think. Perhaps it could be done as a homeschooling thing?
Thanks so much! ~Melissa Smith

Michele said...

thanks Julie!!!!!
I always think of things I'd like to come in and blog......but can't seem to get in here as often as I'd like!

Melissa, I'll get with you......

Marissa Whitney said...

Great post. Lots to think about!

Anonymous said...

wow...reading that was almost painful. this is my reality. one that i must face. i am flooded with so many emotions right now. thank you for sharing your thoughts and opening my eyes.