Becoming Titus 2 is a monthly discussion over at Extravagent Grace on what it means to become a Titus 2 woman.
Titus 2:3-5 is a familiar verse encouraging women in their lifestyle and behavior:
"the older women likewise, that they be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things, that they admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be blasphemed."
Today's section to look at is: "not slanderers, not given to much wine," I will admit that my first reaction was to skip over this part, I don't drink and don't slander. But as a woman who seeks to be a Titus 2 woman, I knew I needed to dig a little deeper into this.
I found some interesting things about this verse. The "older woman" doesn't neccesarily indicate age, but more of seniority or experience. The older woman is to have a reputation or manner of life that is worthy of respect as a mature woman of God. To have a life worthy of resepct is to practice living a daily life with these Titus 2 principles in practice.
The godly woman is to have victory over sins of the tongue, particularly, in this case, the sin of bearing false witness, that is, of being a false accuser. Sins of the tongue can be subtle- sharing a prayer request when it should be kept quiet, giving an opinion that is unfavorable (even if it is true!), our verbal reactions to how others rudely treated us etc. This can be an ongoing battle as the tongue is a fierce fire to tame. Each correct word chosen to uplift and edify is a step in the right direction. A beautiful prayer to pray each day is "May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing to You, O Lord".
Given to much wine means "to be in bondage or slavery to wine" or "to be under the restraint of wine". To be effective in her personal witness for the Lord, and as an adviser and teacher of younger women, the mature godly woman must not be in bondage to addictions of the flesh, in particular in this passage, to alcohol. Drunkenness was a big problem on Crete during this period; that's why it's mentioned so prominently in this letter. Drunkenness is not an addiction we may struggle with, but the importance of not being in bondage or addiction to anything is something to take notice of. In our day and time there are pleasures that abound for women. The world assures us that we need "me time", we deserve it. There is nothing wrong with a hobby or finding joy through fun things, if it is done in moderation. If we struggle to get through the day without the internet, checking emails, Facebook, Twitter etc., we may need to step back. If our passion for shopping, nails, shoes etc. drives us to always be seeking to improve our looks, clothes etc. is getting out of hand, we may need to evaluate. If we cannot function without the cell phone or electronic toy, it is gaining on us instead of us having the upper hand. These are just examples of things that if left unchecked, can draw us into unwise or unprofitable behaior. Again, these are not things that must be avoided, but examples of the things in our lives we may want to moderate. We have so many freedoms and luxuries to indulge in, but it is vitally important to keep them in thier place, not allow them to take time away from our God given priorities.
Living a Titus 2 life is a journey, not somewhere where we say "we're here". It is a step by step, daily walk where we seek to follow the leading of the Lord and allow Him to pour His characteristics in our hearts and then we in turn freely pour out His graciousness to others. Along the path are things to be avoided and things to linger and ponder at. May we continually seek Him as we travel His path and be blessed to be a blessing to others.