Sunday, May 14, 2006
Women of God
This morning as I was having my devotions (it's Mother's Day), I read a passage in Proverbs 31. It is about a wife of noble character. WOW! What an incredible woman. She is virtuous and capable, she is worth more than precious stones, her husband can trust her and she will enrich his life, and she will not hinder him. She works hard, she prepares food, she gets up before dawn to look after her household. She is wise with her money and conducts business. She is energetic, strong and a hard worker. She watches for bargains, her hands are busy and her light burns late into the night. She helps others all the time. She looks after her children and is not afraid and she dresses well.....and it goes on and on - WOW! - She sounds like an incredible woman! Someone who I would definitely like to be like.
But you know which verses got to me this morning? Verses 25-31 "She is clothed with strength and dignity, and she laughs with no fear of the future. When she speaks, her words are wise, and kindness is the rule when she gives instructions. She carefully watches all that goes on in her household and does not bear the consequences of laziness. Her children stand and bless her. Her husband praises her: "There are many virtuous and capable women in the world, but you surpass them all!" Charm is deceptive, and beauty does not last; but a woman who fears the Lord will be greatly praised. Reward her for all she has done. Let her deeds publicly declare her praise."
I see this woman as a huge inspiration to be all that I can be. What an example set before us. To be a woman who fears the Lord is a major goal - it is my goal. Her qualities are great - hard work, fear of God, respect for spouse, foresight, encouragement, care for others, concern for the poor, wisdom in handling money. These qualities when they're together with fear of God, they lead to enjoyment, success, honor and worth. Fear of God doesn't mean to be afraid of Him, but it means to have respect and reverance for Him and to obey Him.
I know women like this. God has brought many women into my life whose goal in life is to put Him first. They have blessed me sooooo much and have been such an example for me to follow. It is so essential for a woman, a mom, to take care of herself spiritually so that she can take care of her children. The biggest concern is to care for her own soul - to grow in wisdom and in the knowledge of God. To have wisdom, to show kindness and to have respect for the Lord. I honor these women in my life that have been this. I thank God for them. I have looked up to them and I have learned much from them.
These pictures that I chose this morning, reflect these qualities in these women. The first one, shows a woman lifting her hands to the Lord above and honoring Him - she is lifting up her soul to Him as she is trusting Him daily with her life and with the life of her family. I love this picture. It expresses the desire in my own heart. To seek God first and then to be the woman, wife, friend, mother....that He wants me to be.
The next picture is of a groom washing the feet of his bride. This is the picture of Christ washing His disciples feet. He was a servant even though He was the Messiah. He was a King - the King of Kings - but He became a servant. This bride and groom desired to serve each other - to serve one another in love - not out of duty. That is the life of a mother - to serve her family out of love, and not because of duty. Oh, how often I have failed at that but each new day God gives me another chance.
Abraham Lincoln once said "God bless my mother...all I am I owe to her." He loved his mother and she taught him well. Do my children love me and have I taught them well? That is what I try to do - I don't always succeed and at times I fail, but I keep trying to teach them what is right and true. To have my children stand and bless me and to have my husband praise me - oh how much more could a mother/wife be when that happens. That is my desire - to carefully watch over my household and not to bear the consequences of laziness, to have my children bless me and to have my husband to praise me. To not focus on my physical beauty but to focus on my spiritual beauty and to put God first - to fear the Lord.
I know that when I take the time and get up a little earlier to spend time in God's Word and in prayer, my day is so much better and I feel so much stronger. I am able to handle the pressures around me and the daily frustrations so much wiser. If I don't have that time, I am lacking in self control and wisdom.
I know my family loves me, my husband does praise me and my children hug me each day and tell me they love me. That makes my day! God is looking after us and I know that I am doing some things right. I sure don't do everything right, and I never will until I get to Heaven, but I keep trying each day.
Lord, clothe me with strength and dignity. Show me that I don't need to fear the future. Help my words to be wise and kindness to rule everything that I do and the instructions that I give. Teach me how to watch over my household that I will not have to bear the consequences of laziness. Help me not to be focussed so much on my body but to focus on my soul and my nourishment from You. Teach me to fear You and to teach this to my children. Grant me wisdom Father to change the things I can but to accept those things that I cannot change and that I would have the wisdom and discernment to know the difference. Thank you God for looking after my family and for guiding us each day. I love you Lord. Amen