A wife of noble character who can find?
She is worth far more than rubies.
Her husband has full confidence in her
and lacks nothing of value.
She brings him good, not harm,
all the days of her life.
She selects wool and flax
and works with eager hands.
She is like the merchant ships,
bringing her food from afar.
She gets up while it is still night;
she provides food for her family
and portions for her female servants.
She considers a field and buys it;
out of her earnings she plants a vineyard.
She sets about her work vigorously;
her arms are strong for her tasks.
She sees that her trading is profitable,
and her lamp does not go out at night.
In her hand she holds the distaff
and grasps the spindle with her fingers.
She opens her arms to the poor
and extends her hands to the needy.
When it snows, she has no fear for her household;
for all of them are clothed in scarlet.
She makes coverings for her bed;
she is clothed in fine linen and purple.
Her husband is respected at the city gate,
where he takes his seat among the elders of the land.
She makes linen garments and sells them,
and supplies the merchants with sashes.
She is clothed with strength and dignity;
she can laugh at the days to come.
She speaks with wisdom,
and faithful instruction is on her tongue.
She watches over the affairs of her household
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
Her children arise and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
“Many women do noble things,
but you surpass them all.”
Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;
but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
Honor her for all that her hands have done,
and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.
Even though scholars debate the identity of King Lemuel, Solomon chose to include this writing in his book of wisdom. This poem is a beautiful picture of a virtuous woman. The author begins this text with a statement of the value of the virtuous woman. There is no doubt that most people did something on Mother’s Day to communicate to their mothers how valuable they are. Some communicated this value with a visit, while social distancing of course. Others gifted their moms with something special to communicate just how valuable they really are. Mother’s Day is very hard for me. I lost my mother to cancer back in 1984. But I cannot overstate the important role she played in my life. I am who I am in part because of the influence she had in my life. Mothers are valuable and worthy to be celebrated.
We also see from this text that a virtuous woman is hardworking! As I think back on my own childhood, there was never a time when my mother wasn’t caring for her family. She always put her family’s needs before her own. Her average work week must have been about sixty hours. I even remember a time when my dad was out of work and my mom went to work in a factory to help support our family. The word “lazy” was not in her vocabulary.
In the end, a virtuous woman truly is a blessing. The definition of a blessing is, “God’s favor and protection.” God blesses us by placing special women in our lives. Some of these women wear the title of mom. Others may be wives, sisters, aunts, grandmothers, co-workers or just friends. Whatever their roles are, they are a gift from God. Today, remember to thank God for some of the special blessings (women) in your life.
Questions to Ponder:
Who has been the most influential woman in your life? Why? Who in your life has exhibited the traits of the virtuous woman found in Proverbs 31? Have you taken the time to count your blessings during the COVID-19 pandemic?
- Praise God right now for the 1-2 women in your life who have influenced you the most.
- Ask the LORD to bless them (if they are still living) or to touch their family and friends if they have passed.
- Pray for all the women in your life, those who exhibit those qualities and those who do not. Pray they all will know how deeply loved they are by our Father in heaven!
God, I praise You for being open and inviting. I praise You for being tender, caring, loving, understanding, receptive and watchful. Lord, You are my strength and my portion. You are the Strong Tower that we run to. Thank You for Your Word that reveals Your heart and Your nature. When I read Proverbs 31, I think of the women around me or throughout my life that demonstrate those qualities. Thank You for them. Bless them today, oh God. Surround them with Your love, encouragement and help today. For those in our midst who might read Proverbs 31 or look at other women and think they could never measure up, help them to remember how you see them. I pray that they would adjust their eyes to see your heart for them. You want us to be who You have created us to be and to keep our eyes fixed on You! Grant encouragement now to all women, oh God. In the name of Jesus Christ, I ask. Amen.