I am continuing the series about being a Proverbs 31 wife. I have found in my journey to be the wife that God commissioned me to be, that it is a difficult journey at times because the outside world simply does not understand. The women's lib movement has tarnished the minds of the people and made them blind and unnaccepting of the commissions of God. All that being said despite this small difficulty it is the most rewarding journey I have made and our marriage has prospered greatly because of it. So let's continue with our journey into Proverbs 31.
Proverbs 31:15 She riseth also while it is yet night, and giveth meat to her household, and a portion to her maidens.
Women in the days of old indeed rose earlier than everyone in the home. When the husband and children awoke breakfast was ready and everyone in the home started the day with a good breakfast and the care of a loving mother/wife. In today's times I hear of so many women that sleep til the later hours of the morning long after the sun has risen. Now I will admit that although I wake up before the rooster (5 am) that my husband does not get breakfast before he leaves home. However, this is at his request. I do make sure that he does have whatever he needs to take with him for the day handy and that his lunch is prepared and sent off with him. My children have breakfast ready when they get up, with the exception of Monday's which is cereal day. Also by arising early in the morning there is quite a bit more time to get the things accomplished during the day. It is not easy running a homestead or a family and by wasting half the day in bed much is lost and there is always of feeling of not getting much done. So get up early ladies and get that day started.
vs 16 She considereth a field, and buyeth it: with the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard
Hmmmmmm....So Adam might have been the first to be commissioned to till the land but we ladies were not left out. This verse shows that we do have a say in what happens on our homestead and we do make decisions and act upon them. So many women think that the Bible simply command them to be doormats and this just is not true. It is what the women's lib folks would have us to believe. Not only do we help to provide for the family by working our own field which we have purchased, but we must bring in an income of some sort to be able to do this. We will see later where this income is coming from. For right now it is enough to know that we women also contribute to the well being of our family and we do so of our own free will. We too are commissioned to work the land.
vs. 17 She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms.
No wimpy weak women here in this verse. Women worked hard and they were were strong for it. This kept them healthy. I know women nowadays that cannot life a 20 pound sack of dog food. Really I have seen them in the grocery store when they have to find someone to help them get it into their buggy in the aisle. It is pitiful how weak women are these days and dangerous as well. Not everything about the good old days were "good" there were evil men in those days as well. Women who were weak were vulnerable, women who could defend themselves were much better off. Which kind of woman are you? Are you vulnerable to the evils of the world, or could you make a stand if you had to? You know in the South during the Civil War women were left home alone with the children. The weak women didn't fair so well when the yankees turned to total warfare. They were raped, killed, imprisoned right along with their children. There were babies burned alive in homes because their mother's were too weak to defend them. Some women fought though and survived along with their children. I would rather know that I could defend myself and my children if needed than to live with the knowledge that I had no chance to save my children if we were under some sort of attack. And ladies, these days, women are not safe anywhere or at anytime. Just watch the news if you don't believe me. Are your muscles strong? Is your body healthy?
vs. 18 She perceiveth that her merchandise is good: her candle goeth not out by night
Yes, we are often called to work late into the night when taking care of our family. This verse tells us where the money to buy the field comes from... our own skills and our own hands. Women were allowed to work and earn money by God's word. It is a fallacy to think otherwise because right here in this verse God is talking about the merchandise of a wife. Merchandise is something that is for sale and biblical wives not only were allowed but expected according to God to produce goods from the "extras" of their family's labors to sell at market. This is the heart of the Biblical agrarian movement. Most will agree that if you start down the path toward biblical agrarianism with the idea of how much money you wish to make then you have already failed. First, provide your family's needs, and then sell what you will not use. It is the wife who gets the goods ready for market. You see the husband and wife still interwoven here in their marriage bond. It is a physical partnership and interweaving as much as a spiritual partnership. Both husband and wife working as a team and if seperated then the continuity fails.
vs. 19 She layeth her hands to the spindle, and her hands hold the distaff.
Again the wife working for the good of the family. Ladies it is plain and simple, God expected, commanded, and ordained that laziness and slothfulness were not part of his plan nor were they acceptable. So those who think it is ok to lounge in bed half the day, then lounge around the house or spend your days shopping or some other slovenly pursuit are in trouble. 6 days the Lord labored and 6 days we are to labor.
vs. 20 She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth for her hands to the needy.
The family's acts of charity were shown through the wife. It was her duty to see to the needy and poor of the community. In biblical times this was probably due to the fact that most of the needy and poor were widows. Women were given the gift of compassion and empathy for a reason and this is one area where it was ecpected by God for those gifts to be used. My grandfather often told me that during the Great Depression that my great grandmother every morning would load up her car with live chickens and drive around the community to people who were in need of food. During the depression most everyone had a small garden, but for very many families meat was hard to come by. It is much easier for someone in need to accept help from us women than it is to accept from a man. Especially, if the person in need is a man because having to face another man and admit that they need help is something that many honorable men cannot bring themselves to do and simply destroys their pride.
Ok, I will get to Part 3 soon. I expect this is enough for us to think about for today. May God bless you all in your journey.