This Mother’s Day weekend, I am truly realizing how very blessed I am.
We so often hear Proverbs 31 referred to on Mother’s Day Weekend. And we should. It truly teaches the attributes of a wise and virtuous woman. I am very blessed to have had a mother AND grandmothers who were truly women who fit into this description of a wise woman.
Verses 10-31 speak of so many of the traits that I saw in my Mom and my Grandmothers. If you know them, you’ll see that in these verses:
10-31 A good woman is hard to find,
and worth far more than diamonds.
Her husband trusts her without reserve,
and never has reason to regret it.
Never spiteful, she treats him generously
all her life long.
She shops around for the best yarns and cottons,
and enjoys knitting and sewing.
She’s like a trading ship that sails to faraway places
and brings back exotic surprises.
She’s up before dawn, preparing breakfast
for her family and organizing her day.
She looks over a field and buys it,
then, with money she’s put aside, plants a garden.
First thing in the morning, she dresses for work,
rolls up her sleeves, eager to get started.
She senses the worth of her work,
is in no hurry to call it quits for the day.
She’s skilled in the crafts of home and hearth,
diligent in homemaking.
She’s quick to assist anyone in need,
reaches out to help the poor.
She doesn’t worry about her family when it snows;
their winter clothes are all mended and ready to wear.
She makes her own clothing,
and dresses in colorful linens and silks.
Her husband is greatly respected
when he deliberates with the city fathers.
She designs gowns and sells them,
brings the sweaters she knits to the dress shops.
Her clothes are well-made and elegant,
and she always faces tomorrow with a smile.
When she speaks she has something worthwhile to say,
and she always says it kindly.
She keeps an eye on everyone in her household,
and keeps them all busy and productive.
Her children respect and bless her;
her husband joins in with words of praise:
“Many women have done wonderful things,
but you’ve outclassed them all!”
Charm can mislead and beauty soon fades.
The woman to be admired and praised
is the woman who lives in the Fear-of-God.
Give her everything she deserves!
Festoon her life with praises!
But as I pulled up the passage because I wanted to do a blog post of thankfulness for the blessings that I have experienced in my “heritage”, I chose to pull the passage up in The Message translation. I must admit, it has been a while since I have gone to that particular chapter. Too long. I didn’t even remember the way the chapter STARTS. It says:
1The words of King Lemuel, the strong advice his mother gave him:
2-3 “Oh, son of mine, what can you be thinking of!
Child whom I bore! The son I dedicated to God!
Don’t dissipate your virility on fortune-hunting women,
promiscuous women who shipwreck leaders.
4-7 “Leaders can’t afford to make fools of themselves,
gulping wine and swilling beer,
Lest, hung over, they don’t know right from wrong,
and the people who depend on them are hurt.
Use wine and beer only as sedatives,
to kill the pain and dull the ache
Of the terminally ill,
for whom life is a living death.
8-9 “Speak up for the people who have no voice,
for the rights of all the down-and-outers.
Speak out for justice!
Stand up for the poor and destitute!”
And I realized that I am even more blessed than I thought I was. Because I have parents and Grandparents who have taught us what SCRIPTURE says. My parents especially go to God’s Word as their guide. I remember meals growing up and other times as well when either Mom or Dad would read from Proverbs or another passage to pour words of wisdom into us that we draw from even today.
I was just talking with a friend earlier today who reminded me how very blessed I am to have been nurtured and taught, from CHILDHOOD, to turn to scripture for my guide to life. It isn’t always easy to follow the instructions given there. To be honest, we might miss out on some things that others consider to be fun or pleasurable, but just as a parent has rules for his or her children that they don’t always appreciate or understand, there is purpose in EVERY word.
We can choose to question some of those things, but ultimately, as I have gone through life I realize that there is purpose for EVERY instruction given. There are also consequences for every one broken. Just as a parent disciplines their child for the good of and instruction of their child, the Lord has purpose and reason for the “rules” that He has set forth.
I am SO GRATEFUL to have had parents that have taught me from a very young age to honor and respect the Word of God for what it is – our guidebook for life.
My mom especially is KNOWN as one who doesn’t just “read what it says”, but digs to REALLY see what it means and she did her level best to instill that in her children. I remember many afternoons of copying passages of scripture as “punishment”. I now realize that it was MUCH more than discipline. Doing those “exercises in discipline” actually built a knowledge of scripture into my life that I still refer back to today.
I do not take for granted the fact that I was truly blessed to have that kind of teaching built into my life. When others around me struggle for answers, I often have a base to go back to or at the very least a knowledge that I can RUN to scripture for my answers and that, in VERY large part, is because of the Godly Heritage that was passed down from my parents and especially Mom!
As Proverbs 31 says, I can truly “Rise up to call her blessed.”
What about you? Does your Mom need to hear a word of thanks from you for bringing you up with a similar belief system? And if not, remember, you STILL have the opportunity to learn and build those truths into YOUR children and/or the friends and other family members around you. Start today!