Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Proverbs 31 - A Virtuous Woman

The first few devotions are based on Proverbs 31. This is a continuation of the topic started yesterday, learning about what it means to be a godly woman.

This is what Nancy DeMoss had to say in her second email to me:

A Virtuous Woman

When you hear the phrase "a godly woman," does an actual woman come to mind? Better yet, do you think that could ever describe you?*

  • The Proverbs 31 woman deals with the same issues you do!
  • I can tell you this—she didn't get there overnight, and she hasn't yet arrived. She's a woman in process. She's a woman who, like most of us, often finds herself taking three steps forward and two steps back.
  • The world tells you that if you look out for yourself, then you'll be happy. But it's the woman who lives for God and others who is truly joyful.
You'll need to go here to read everything she has to stay about the Proverbs 31 passage today, but these words struck me:
Now as I read that passage, maybe you have these recurring thoughts of, “Oh, this is so hard. This is so impossible. Who can imagine a woman like this?” Well, actually that’s what the passage starts out by saying. “Who can find a woman like this?” She is indeed rare.
I have that. When I read Proverbs 31 I think...yeah I could ever be this type of woman.
10 An excellent wife who can find?
She is far more precious than jewels.
11The heart of her husband trusts in her,
and he will have no lack of gain.
12She does him good, and not harm,
all the days of her life.
13She seeks wool and flax,
and works with willing hands.
14She is like the ships of the merchant;
she brings her food from afar.
15She rises while it is yet night
and provides food for her household
and portions for her maidens.
16She considers a field and buys it;
with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.
17She dresses herself with strength
and makes her arms strong.
18She perceives that her merchandise is profitable.
Her lamp does not go out at night.
19She puts her hands to the distaff,
and her hands hold the spindle.
20She opens her hand to the poor
and reaches out her hands to the needy.
21She is not afraid of snow for her household,
for all her household are clothed in scarlet.
22She makes bed coverings for herself;
her clothing is fine linen and purple.
23Her husband is known in the gates
when he sits among the elders of the land.
24She makes linen garments and sells them;
she delivers sashes to the merchant.
25 Strength and dignity are her clothing,
and she laughs at the time to come.
26She opens her mouth with wisdom,
and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.
27She looks well to the ways of her household
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
28Her children rise up and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
29"Many women have done excellently,
but you surpass them all."
30 Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain,
but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.
31Give her of the fruit of her hands,
and let her works praise her in the gates.
I don't see myself like this at all! All I see are my lackofs and wannabes. Nancy went on to say that this woman probably had the same stuff, seeing her lack-ofs and wannabes. BUT that what this virtuous woman was a woman in process.

She’s a woman in process. She’s a woman who’s growing. And she’s a woman who, like most of us, often finds herself taking three steps forward and two steps back. You see, spiritual maturity is not so much where you are as the direction in which you’re headed. And here’s a woman who’s in process; she’s in direction.

So being a virtuous woman doesn’t mean that she doesn’t have the same struggles and challenges that we all have as women.

She then made these two seemingly contradictory statements.

  • No woman can be like the woman that we read about in Proverbs 31.
  • Any woman who is a child of God can be like this woman.
The first means that we can't do it we just can't do it. Any striving we do under our own power won't cause us to be Proverbs 31 women.

The second means that if we choose to let God work through us, we can become a Proverbs 31 woman. We can set the right values and priorities in our lives.

1. she fears the Lord God
2. she loves her husband and children
3. she works hard at the tasks set to her

If we set our priorities in order...with God's help we can become our own version of a Proverbs 31 woman. Now isn't that encouraging? At least I found it to be so. :) Means I might have some challenging work ahead of me...but nothing wrong with being challenged is there? :)

No comments: