And old woman can teach some new things.

And old woman can teach some new things.

As God’s women, as we begin to tackle the plans and demands of a brand new year, we may want to take a moment or two to look at a biblical woman who has been inspiring — and challenging — women for centuries!

The woman known as the “Proverbs 31 Woman” is described in a poem that has been recited for thousands of years in Jewish homes. It has been said that perhaps even Mary, the mother of Jesus, learned this poem as a child as this noble woman was considered a role model of Jewish womanhood.

Does she have anything to teach us as women of the 21st century? Can modern young professional women, as some of you are, learn from such an ancient example? What could a young mother take from this description of a multi-tasking, multi-talented housewife that would be useful? What about the older women, at a different stage in their life, what in this woman’s life can be encouraging to them?

We think so. At Heartfelt Ministries we have read and studied this woman in depth because God is teaching us a great deal in these ancient words about this ancient character – a true woman of God.

As God’s women, as we begin to tackle the plans and demands of a brand new year, we may want to take a moment or two to look at a biblical woman who has been inspiring — and challenging — women for centuries!

The woman known as the “Proverbs 31 Woman” is described in a poem that has been recited for thousands of years in Jewish homes. It has been said that perhaps even Mary, the mother of Jesus, learned this poem as a child as this noble woman was considered a role model of Jewish womanhood.

Does she have anything to teach us as women of the 21st century? Can modern young professional women, as some of you are, learn from such an ancient example? What could a young mother take from this description of a multi-tasking, multi-talented housewife that would be useful? What about the older women, at a different stage in their life, what in this woman’s life can be encouraging to them?

We think we can learn a lot. At Heartfelt Ministries we have read and studied this woman in depth because God is teaching us a great deal in these ancient words about this ancient character – a true woman of God.

A good place to begin to determine if this antiquated description is outdated or appropriate for us today is by looking at Proverbs 31:30.

“Charm is deceptive and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.”

This is perhaps the key to this woman’s long-range influence on for us today. She is a woman who has her priorities in the right place! They are set by getting her life in line with God’s purpose for her. By not submitting to her own will. Her natural, selfish desires are surrendered to God’s direction. This woman is more concerned about what God thinks, rather than with what other people think. That is a message that spans time and cultures with its spiritual wisdom.

As important as physical beauty is to a woman and as valued as the traits of a clever and bright personality are, this woman’s greatest qualities are not these attributes. Her most valuable quality is her faithfulness to God. This woman perhaps knows that if beauty and charm are the extent of her virtues, what happens when time and the trials of life take their toll?

The entertainment and celebrity culture that dominates so much social thinking today is devoted to a different set of values than those of Proverbs 31.

A recent study about women and beauty found that only 2% of those surveyed thought they were beautiful. This study also found that two-thirds of women believe that being physically attractive is about how a woman looks. If beauty is so prized by women, this is pretty sad news!

How does modern America’s glittery celebrity world differ from this 3000-year-old biblical picture of womanhood? The traits of the Proverbs 31 Woman are relevant today because they aren’t based on things that are cheap or trashy, selfish, or centered in fantasy. Instead, this Biblical description is rich in wisdom, practical and real, and this view of womanhood encourages devotion to those things that matter most. Home. Family. Marriage. Friends. Community. The woman who is explained in this text keeps her purpose in line with God and this keeps her priorities in life clear. This woman is one who is beloved by her husband and her children and respected in her community.

So, who is this superwoman? Is she anything like you? Do you know anyone like this woman in Proverbs 31? She is to be admired, respected and unbelievable!

We need to realize that this woman isn’t real, but the picture of that ideal character of womanhood. She has the traits that all of us as a woman of God can work to acquire. She is a poetic portrayal of a woman who didn’t necessarily always have her act together. But over time she grows in her character and spiritual maturity through her various life experiences. It’s been said that “wisdom isn’t just timeless; it takes time.”

So what do you and I need to do to join this woman in her pursuit of God and all things good and godly? How can we “Be the Woman”?

Practice makes perfect. Or so they say. Why don’t we begin this day, this week- this NEW year, to practice Biblical Womanhood? And let’s begin with practicing where it really counts. In our homes.

In practicing to live a good life that honors God, we will never learn it as deeply or as completely as we will when we work on it in the company of those that know us best. Our family. Our children. Our husbands.

ACTION PLAN:

What would life be like if honoring God was your deepest desire?

What would it be like if you began to serve your family, your husband, your children as if it was the highest and best purpose in your life?

Would anything be different?
Would your kids notice anything different about you?
Would your husband see a change in you?
What changes will you make IF your priorities were these?

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