Responding to Naysayers: Part 1

We receive comments on occasion with questions that appear not to be sincere or that might have an agenda. That’s okay. However, we know that you may encounter similar questions from others with a different “world view.” We thought that perhaps if we responded to some of our “naysayer” questions here, it might be a help to you.

Below is a recent blog comment followed by Joseph’s response.

“Since Joseph owns his own home, why can’t he live in it? He doesn’t have a wife and kids to support, so his expenses would be low.”

I (Joseph) always enjoy a small chuckle with myself whenever my dad shares comments like this with our family. The reason is the use of the word “can’t.” “Can’t” indicates that the writer thinks this decision has been made by someone other than me. It hasn’t. Dad and Mom provided solid, Biblical guidance for my life when I was younger, and as I have grown up, they have taught us to think critically with the Bible as our foundation.

There are three main reasons why I chose to continue living at our home after I purchased my own house: financial, accountability, and family. Let me explain.

Financial

While, yes, it is true that living by myself in my house before I am married would be less expensive than it will be when I have my own family, there still would be significant additional expense, such as food and utilities, that I don’t incur while living at home with my parents. It takes little to realize that living with my family is even less expensive than living alone—almost zero. As a result, I can place what I save toward long-term goals, immediate improvements to my house, and giving. I am very grateful for Dad and Mom’s willing and accommodating spirits to let us live in their home without charge as income-earning young adults.

Accountability

When the Lord brings me to begin talking with a young lady’s father about courting his daughter, I will approach that father in total honesty. If I was living by myself, I would have no one to back up my word. In my opinion, if I was living alone and said, “You’ll just have to trust me,” that would lend less credibility than the accountability I have welcomed in our family. Living with my family, and having my parents as my accountability partners, I am very grateful for the ability that I have to provide references to my integrity throughout discussions with a father. I believe Jesus gave a precedent for this when He sent the disciples out two-by-two.

Family

Accountability segues into this one very nicely. I love my family. I love spending time with them. We have a great time together! My family members are my best friends, and life would be rather boring without my best friends around me. If/when the Lord brings along the young lady for me, my family’s “best friend” status will transfer to her and my children. Sadly, many in the world cannot comprehend a family model like this.

For a Scriptural basis for this thinking, I look no further than the first family that God created—Adam, Eve, and eventually their children. Genesis 2:18 says, “And the Lord God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.” A very practical secondary application in this verse is that it is not good for me to live alone.

My desire is to live a life pleasing to Jesus and a life that is in obedience to His Holy Bible. I hope this makes it understandable and clear as to why I am choosing to live with my family until I am married.

In Christ,
Joseph

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“But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always
to give an answer to every man that asketh you a
reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear.”

1 Peter 3:15

36 thoughts on “Responding to Naysayers: Part 1”

  1. Thank you so much, Joseph, for addressing these naysayer questions. I totally understand and agree with your thoughts and you did a wonderful job of explaining your views!

  2. I still live with my parents as well and I don’t mind. They are my best friends. For a long time I was worried what people were thinking. I really related to this post!! Here lately though I know it’s God’s plan for me to be home. Right now I would not want to be anywhere else cause I have a close family bond. So I totally agree with you on this post. Society thinks you have to move out at a certain age and I don’t believe that. Some don’t understand what it is like to have a close family unit. I am lucky I do and my parents welcome me to stay. I help with expenses,they don’t ask me too. People are always going to be negative. People are always going to judge and say mean comments. I commend your strong Godly family and the example you all set for others. God bless you!!

  3. Hi Maxwell Family, I’m so glad you’re back home safely. My husband and I attended your Belleville conference and had a wonderful time! In one of the pics you posted, we’re the couple talking to Anna with our backs to the camera. I had on an orange blouse and my hubby was wearing, as he pointed out, a bald spot on the back of his head;-). We were very inspired and made changes right away! The T.V. is gone!!!! I can’t begin to tell you all the changes that have taken place in our family’s hearts and time since then. We go to bed early, as Steve suggested, and we get up early. We use our time profitably, which is actually more “fun” than what we were doing before. And, most importantly, we’re in God’s Word 3 times a day now–eating spiritually just as we do physically. It has been truly amazing and I praise Jesus with all that is in me! So, thank you so much for doing what you do! On another note, I just wanted to say that we commend Joseph and all your children for the decision to stay at home. It’s very wise and the Lord will bless the desire to seek righteousness and accountability.

    I just want to encourage you that those of us who know the Lord, know the truth, and we know that your family lives it. Thank you for your courageous choices and desire to help other families draw closer to the Lord. It’s an honor to have met you and to gain wisdom from you to help lead our family in the ways of the Lord.

    Blessings on you all! Summer
    >>>>>>>>
    Yeah!! Good for you too! Thank you so much for coming and sharing!

  4. Could you do something similar to this for us gals staying at home? I am 21, still single, without an official job though I work 20-60 hour weeks babysitting/tutoring/music teaching and help run 3 business out of our home. But I still deal with a lot of questions and treatment that sometimes borders on persecution. Normally from “Christian Women”. Ideas for answers would be greatly appreciated!
    >>>>>>>>
    Sounds to us like you are profitable with you time. We will see what we can do.

    Blessings!

  5. Wow, that was great! I so appreciate the Biblical perspective of the Maxwells. It is so refreshing in today’s world. Thank you Joseph for this post. Looking forward to part 2, and 3, and 4….:)

  6. I think it’s helpful for those who follow your family adventures on-line to see how you respond to nay-sayers, and especially when the questions are about the adult children for the adult children to respond themselves, as in this case. I particularly like Joseph’s statement that the “best friend” relationship will transfer to his wife and children in the future. Nicely stated. Blessings to you all!

  7. Wow Joseph, I just love your heart and answer. You really are a godly example of what young men should strive to be. I guess you all must get some pretty intrusive and negative comments, putting yourselves out there like you do. I will keep praying your an encouragement and blessing to many–you have been to me:-) Thank you!

  8. Thank you so much for your biblical and well reasoned response! So many people don’t understand why I live at home even though I am in my 30s and have my own house.

    Joseph, have you considered renting out your house to a Godly family? The income would be helpful when Jesus brings the right young lady to you.
    >>>>>>>>
    He’s still working on it and so it isn’t rentable.

  9. Inspiring response Joseph! I know it is foreign in our culture for people to understand that families do want to be together for many reasons. It amuses me when people presume it is under parent control. Of course up-bringing probably does influence a young person’s decision – however; since we are commanded to “train up a child in the way he should go” why is that carried with such negativity? Every action we take and every word we speak is going to influence our children’s environment. One way or another . . . negative or positive (whether a convert to Christ or not).

    As we were reading this we couldn’t help but smile when we saw Joseph’s response – well thought out, and unabashedly solid in his convictions, a young man that attempts to glorify the Lord in what he says and does. That should be the hope of all parents (after of course the main thing for our children- a relationship with Christ). Thanks for addressing this comment and not blowing it off. It will make a difference in someone’s life! Always in our prayers – the T family.

  10. Loved this post!!! Loved that it came from your son, but also love that it gives us some idea on who to respond to others when the times may come.

  11. Thank you for sharing this, Joseph. You and your family are such a testimony to living for the Lord, and an inspiration and encouragement to so many. May the Lord continue to guide and bless you.
    Love in Christ, Mrs. Patti 🙂
    II Timothy 3:14

  12. This lifestyle may work for you and it is nice of you to explain, but those of us who chose a college education, a career and independent living are no less Godly, no less Christian and no lower in the Lord’s eyes than those of you who didn’t. I hope this is not what you are implying. I do hope you respect other people’s lifestyle choices as you expect others to respect yours.
    >>>>>>>>>
    Each will each stand before the Lord at the judgement to account for the life they lived and the choices they have made. We don’t judge anyone. There was no implication or judgement in the post. I think you will see over time how few people really have freedom and peace in the choices they make. Therefore, they tend to get upset easily if someone chooses something different than they did.

    When we go to a restaurant, we are not troubled if everyone else orders something different than we do, even if we think we are ordering the very best on the menu. Then why might some be troubled if we make different choices than they do in life?

    Have a great day Patti and pursue the Lord Jesus with your whole heart.

  13. We’ll spoken, Joseph. I am thankful everyday that our four adults children chose to live at home until they were married. Most of their friends did too so we didn’t have a lot of explaining to do.
    God Bless You All and the example you set for other young adults.

  14. While I do not live alone; I am married with four children. I am always encouraged to hear the children living in the ways of the Lord. As a mother, I pray that my children will grasp the ways of Christ and continue learning HIS ways just as the Maxwell family. Continue to encourage the Body of Christ; I for one, realized it was possible through just one of your conferences.
    Many Blessings,
    Semone

  15. I would have been so grateful to be allowed to live at home and do what you’re doing (making a future home for yourself and your bride) but my parents required I go to college and support myself while doing so. It was crazy and in my opinion, not very nice, but I learned a lot the hard way, I suppose. I’m sorry that your post was even necessary, as it’s really no one else’s business to judge your decisions, but I like that you took it on and wrote about it. Unfortunately, there are mean-spirited people in this world who feel they can put anything in writing and the internet makes it so easy to do it anonymously. Thanks for your candor and honesty. I think you’ve encouraged more people than you know! 🙂

  16. This is a very interesting topic. There are many cultures and countries in this world where it is completely acceptable, common and “normal” for adult unmarried children to remain in the home until marriage. I do think it is sad that here in the U.S. everyone feels the need to be autonomous and that young adults have to defend their decisions to be with their families. It is a beautiful thing when children enjoy the company and companionship of their families and don’t desire to leave them behind for some other “independent” life. I commend Joseph for his blog post.

  17. What a wonderful example to families! I pray that my children will always be each others’ best friends, even as adults.

  18. Your decisions are foolishness to the natural man. Makes perfect sense to the renewed mind. Shine on! 🙂

    “But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.” 1 Corinthians 2:14-15

    “In the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world.” Philippians 2:15

  19. I love Joseph’s response! One thing that might be helpful when receiving comments or questions from others, is to understand that they aren’t always meant to be critical. The responsible way to be, according to the world, is to gain independence as soon as possible. Often, children who remain at home for many years after the age of adulthood, are viewed as lazy or not really wanting to grow up. That is obviously not the case with you, and many other families. But, your family’s work ethic is not common either. We really are a society that makes sure we get our leisure time, and then some.

    Taking time to share your experiences, as you do in your blog, and answering what really may just be curiosity, in a kind and constructive way is one of the many ways you are helping others see that there is another life-view. I sometimes have misconceptions about other churches and choices that others are making, and I appreciate it when a person is willing to help me out with that – just as I appreciate it when someone comes to me with questions about choices that I make, instead of assuming, or asking someone else who doesn’t really know my situation or beliefs.
    >>>>>>
    Thank you. Over time, it becomes obvious to us who are the naysayers and who really are asking questions with the intent on learning and understanding. We try to be patient and understanding with all.

  20. Your son can feel truly blessed, my husband and I were told at age 18 that it is time to move out and support ourselves. We also had to start paying rent, utilities, groceries etc. at age 15/16 (His and my parents just divided all Bills between everybody living in the home over the required age).

  21. Thank you Joseph – I agree with you. I appreciate your openness in sharing. Very helpful in helping me be content living at home.

  22. You’re family is a beautiful example to me of obedience to the Lord. Sadly, the Lord’s way is usually unpopular and unheard of to many. Bless you all abundantly for staying the course. 🙂

  23. Joseph you are wise beyond your years. Thanks be to God for the truth of HIS word and the work of the Holy Spirit in your life. May God continue to bless you all.

  24. Thank you for putting in words the exact way my son feels! He is 23 and owns his own farm, but still lives here at home with us for the same reasons. It’s encouraging to us to see your example!

  25. After spending six months in India, the one thing that I took away from me was the love that families share with one another. In traditional families, the woman marries her husband and goes off to live with him and his parents in their home, for good. The woman lives with her in laws and helps in taking care of the home and her new parents. They do not leave the home in search of a place to live in all by themselves. Also, their children remain at home, the woman leaves for her husband’s house once married.

    I think this is a good tradition to uphold, however in America our culture teaches that we should encourage our children to leave at 18 years old, move to their own place and basically be “thrown out in to the world to sink or swim”. I disagree with this and I think it is good that children are at home with their parents, regardless of their age.

    To the public, I say God has His timing for everyone, and when the time is right for a man or woman to marry it will happen. I trust in His plan! God Bless

  26. I appreciate you answering the naysayers’ questions rather than ignoring them. It is a great inspiration and encouragement to see the way you handle these questions with grace. I’d love to see more posts like this. In addition to learning from the specific content of your answer, I learn so much through the way you speak in love.

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