e honour and celebrate our Godly women today all across the world, those women who accept the challenges of womanhood.
May God bless whoever muted the idea of setting a particular day every year to honour and celebrate our women. It was very thoughtful of the person.
So today I congratulate and greet all the godly women; who have taken the challenges of womanhood with grace and dignity. I hope that those women who are yet to accept the challenges will do by the time I finish this sermon so that I can congratulate them too, next year.
So today, I am speaking on the "Challenges & the Blessings of Womanhood"
But let us first commit this hour into the hands of the Lord as Dr. Dn. Kayode Samuel does
The Challenges & the Blessings of Womanhood.
The Apostle Paul in his first epistle to the Corinthians 11 verse 12, paid tribute to them by writing "For although the first woman came out of man, all men have been born from women ever since, -----"(1Cor. 11: 12).
Without doubt, women have more to bear for the human race to remain in existence. They have more to offer if the house must be at peace and in order that the marriage be sustained.
Where the home loses peace or divorce occurs, in many cases, it is because the woman resist, protest or fail to accept the challenges and demands placed upon her in the home.
Do not misunderstand me, I have not said it is the fault of the wife, I am only saying that most probably, the woman has not accepted enough, the demands of tolerance placed on her.
And when I am talking about being tolerant, I am not saying that the wife should remain in the marriage where it generates to the point where the husband has turned her to become a soccer ball, kicking her here and there, subjecting her life to danger. When it gets to that stage and every effort to bring the man to his senses fail, the wife must talk to her legs.
The role of womanhood in marriage is by no means an easy one.
The demands of womanhood is enormous such that I often say that if after I get to heaven and God wants me to return to the earth, He must let me come back as a man otherwise He should allow me to continue to enjoy my time with Him. I will not be tired nor be bored singing Halleluyah to Him day and night.
Women have a lot to absorb, they have a lot to compromise, they have a lot to do. They have a lot of sacrifice to make. The responsibility placed on women is enormous.
And so the godly mothers who have family values start the modeling of their daughters right from the very young age.
The girls are from the very young age groomed to become responsible wives and mothers.
I remember that when we were growing up, my mother did not spare my sister in matters of decorum and house chores.
Things that she will raise no serious eyebrow about me, she did with my sister, telling her that she would in future leave home to live with a strange family while I will remain in the house and a girl will come and join me.
My mother insisted that my sister sat properly, laugh only when necessary, comment on situations only when invited to do and so on and so forth.
This was nearly 70 years ago. We may say the situation has changed. It might have changed in many circumstances where the couples do not live in the family house of the husband. And even where the couples live by themselves, the girl adapts a different mother and father; the parents of her husband.
Ruth declared to her mother in-law after the death of her husband "Don't make me leave you, for I want to go wherever you go and to live wherever you live; your people shall be my people, and your God shall be my God; 17 I want to die where you die and be buried there. May the Lord do terrible things to me if I allow anything but death to separate us"(Ruth 1:16).
But is that so simple a thing?
Not at all. And God rewarded Ruth by making her a great grandmother to the savior of the world
For one to leave the loving environment of her mother, father, brothers and sisters, which she has been enjoying right from her birth and migrate into a strange family is by no means easy.
She abandons her biological father's name and picks the name of the husband except in the Arab culture where the woman retains her father's name.
The wife starts to learn and to adjust to the character and ways of life of her new family members if she must enjoy her new home.
A girl told me that she came from a home of extroverts, where everybody spoke freely and expressed themselves freely into a home where everyone kept to themselves. So she had to adjust if she wanted peace for herself. But is that easy? Not at all.
However, it becomes easier if a girl starts to prepare herself right from the moment she made up her mind that she was going to marry. She must start to prepare her mind that she would in future have a new set of parents.
There have been instances where the new parents are difficult or unfriendly to their newly adopted daughter; there is nothing, which the wife does that is pleasing to her mother in-law. Many marriages have thereby run into trouble in such circumstances, particularly where the husband fails to protect her wife sufficiently.
In the African culture, any woman who decides to marry knows that she is not marrying only her husband but the whole family of the husband and his extended family members.
Where the wife plays "My husband and I" the marriage will quickly run into troubled waters. Such problems may not come into play where the couple lives outside the country. But even then parents still make visits.
What about the administration and management of the home?
The mother plans for the breakfast, lunch and dinner for the family three times a day and throughout the year.
I used to live away from home and taking care of only my mouth was problematic many times.
Though she had prepared the meals and packed them inside the deep freezer; many times, I forgot to bring them out at the appropriate time for the meal to defrost. I remembered only when I became hungry. And when such occurred, I had to make some other crash programs.
The woman plans ahead of time to stock food materials when they are a bit cheap.
Soon as she returns from work, she goes straight into the kitchen while baba goes out with friends or watches the TV. But the father who loves his wife will ask how he can assist.
It was a bit better in the days when there were house helps.
She is the first person to wake up in the home and she is the last to go to bed.
After all these baba is still waiting for her on some nights. I hope you know what I mean! Well, if she is not too tired, it may however provide her some relaxing moment.
Planning menu may be difficult where the family is large in matters of what to eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner. It is not an easy task as she cannot be putting on the table, same thing each time. Even if baba understands, children will complain. Baba too will even complain.
I know some parents who gave the children money to go and buy whatever breakfast each preferred.
In the Western countries, families for a long time, go to restaurants for dinner. Yet, this cannot be everyday except they want to spend all their earnings on food. So the woman has so many things working in her brain every moment.
An enjoyment of few minutes of one night between the two, results in a burden, which only one person shoulders for the next nine months initially.
Sometimes ago, one young woman was with us during her 1st trimester; it was a very difficult time for her.
She constantly nauseated.
She rarely ate for the fear that she might throw up.
She was on bed almost all day.
I sympathized with her a lot. I wished there was a way I could help her but none.
I had no prior experience of this because fortunately, my wife had nothing of such during her time.
After the baby arrives, begins the problem of nursing with sleepless nights on many occasions.
Mind you, the baby does not even take the name of the woman who carried her in the womb for nine months and nursed him. The baby takes the name of the father, whose contribution to his/her existence lasts ten minutes or probably less.
And if the baby grows up to prosper, he is the father's child but if otherwise, he is the mother's.
King Solomon confirms this as recorded in Proverbs 10:1 and 15:20.
He said "A wise son maketh a glad father: but a foolish son is the heaviness of his mother" (Prov. 10:1; 15:20).
Soon as she delivers her baby, she occupies herself with how to get back to shape, how to collapse her womb so that she can again be appealing to her husband, while the husband in his own case carries his pot belly about.
Did Paul the Apostle not say it "A married woman considers other things such as housekeeping and the likes and dislikes of her husband (NLT) or in the KJV, she that is married, careth for the things of the world, how she may please her husband KJV) (1Cor. 7:34).
Preaching at a wedding ceremony one day, I asked the couple to stand up. I asked the bridegroom to look at his bride very well. He did. I then told him that if he wants his wife to retain that posture, he should prevent all, which they will start to do in the other room, soon as they leave the Church from resulting into pregnancy because her posture will change after pregnancy. He cannot have his cake and eat it. I afterwards pleaded with the beautiful bride to please make every possible sacrifice to retain the posture in order to keep him in door.
During the pang of birth, one could hear women crying that they will not be pregnant again but they still did.
God has ordained it so, right from the Garden of Eden. God said to our first mother "I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee (Gen.3:16)
Hear that "and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee" That is why she will still be pregnant again.
But here is a comforting word of assurance from Apostle Paul.
"So God sent pain and suffering to women when their children are born, but he will save their souls if they trust in him, living quiet, good, and loving lives. (1Timothy 2:15)"
So the road to heaven of women is simpler because of the pain they suffer during child birth if only they can just trust God, live quietly, be good, and loves lives.
Another blessing of mothers, which I have observed over the years is that children, however old they are, have a soft spot for their mothers. Even when the mother is glaringly at fault with the father, the children will still find ways to exonerate the mother. It appears that the womb/baby connection lasts forever.
Care of the body. Itoju ara
In spite of the enormous home care loaded on the woman on top of her career, she still must keep herself in shape.
She wants to maintain all that baba saw in her, which attracted her to him.
I understand that some hairdo takes upwards of six hours to complete.
If it is perming, she sits her head under heat for whatever length of time it takes.
If the dressing she wears must include head tie, she still wraps her head in it however hot it may be; all in the effort to remain attractive to the husband.
Though the man who will cheat will cheat but the wife must have satisfied herself that she has done all she needed to do in order to remain relevant to her man and keep him in door.
Anyone who observes me will notice that I do not wear caps. It appears beautiful on men but I cannot just tolerate it. My tolerance limit to heat is very low, so I feel uncomfortable with cap on my head. But can a woman say she will not wear head gear however hot it may be? Not only this, she will attach heavy strange hairs to her own natural hairs when necessary.
Let us pray.
Father, I pray that you continue to give women all over the world, the necessary grace that they need in order to live with the challenges of womanhood so that our world can be a better place to live.
Sam Aweda, Pastor, Jesus for the World Revival Mission (Peoples' Church)