Author, quiverfull mother of ten, and Pastor's wife Stacy McDonald is training up her daughters in the ways of the Lord. She is instilling within them the understanding that they are to be "weaker vessels," and as such, they should forgo higher education and concentrate on serving their father until they find a husband to be their master:
A special measure of honor is given to a lady, “the weaker vessel,” by a gentleman. Interestingly, this is unique to the Christian lifestyle. Heathen cultures do not honor or value women – and even their version of “protecting” women has more to do with selfishness and possessiveness (kind of like protecting your livestock) than it does truly protecting or valuing them.Mrs. McDonald goes on to note the dangers young women face if they attend a university:
Matthew Henry had this commentary on 1 Peter 3:7) [sic]She is the weaker vessel by nature and constitution, and so ought to be defended: but then the wife is, in other and higher respects, equal to her husband; they are heirs together of the grace of life, of all the blessings of this life and another…The weakness of the female sex is no just reason either for separation or contempt, but on the contrary it is a reason for honour and respect: Giving honour to the wife as unto the weaker vessel.
There’s a book I’d like to review soon called Unprotected that gives very real examples of how vulnerable young women are in university settings. The author exposes the hook-up culture with very candid stories of real heartbreaking accounts. Some of the examples are shocking. It’s written by a campus counselor who got tired of being limited by what type of counsel she could give her students. Pills, abortion, and condoms were ok, but God, the Bible, and real facts about STDs and immoral lifestyles were forbidden.
While we must equip both our sons and our daughters to be strong lights in a dark age, our sons are likely to be called to lead and provide for their families, while our daughters are likely to be called to be helpers. Even if they’re never called to marriage, our hope is that our daughters will feel content as a helper in our home (or a relative, if we die) – or even in the church. If God were to never bring them husbands and we were to die (the grand “what-if” question we’re asked), and nobody was willing to take them into their own family, then we are perfectly confident in God’s provision.But raising one's daughters to be "weaker vessels" has its price. Worldly people do not understand why a parent would refuse to send a daughter to college, nor do they understand why a daughter should give her heart to her father for safekeeping:
Our daughters are much more capable of taking care of themselves than I was at their age and I still managed to find a very good job (without having attended college) when I had to. College and being groomed for independent living isn’t the magic pill so many people think it is. Sometimes it can even make one less equipped for life’s trials. Talk to women who were raped while living alone; indoctrinated by feminist, atheist professors; or duped into putting off marriage or children (for the sake of a degree or a career) until it was too late.
There is no law that says “Thou shalt not send your daughter to college.” I'm sure I would have remembered that! LOL For us, it’s kind of like homeschooling. We do not believe that it’s inherently sinful to send your child to public school. However, since we are given the responsibility to train up our children in the ways of God night and day (Deut. 6:7-9), we feel like the best (if not the only) way to ensure that this is done (especially these days) is to teach them at home.
Our daughters have been made fun of for the way they dress (yes, we do wear dresses and skirts – we believe they’re both feminine and modest – sorry if that offends you); they’ve been criticized for not going away to college; and they’ve been gossiped about for “giving their hearts” to their father in honor of their commitment to courtship.Others may ask, "What if God does not bless a daughter with a husband; what happens to her then?" Well, Mrs. McDonald has considered that possibility as well. They will serve in their father's household until the parents die. Then, it's up to God to take care of her:
Even if they’re never called to marriage, our hope is that our daughters will feel content as a helper in our home (or a relative, if we die) – or even in the church. If God were to never bring them husbands and we were to die (the grand “what-if” question we’re asked), and nobody was willing to take them into their own family, then we are perfectly confident in God’s provision.