A number of years ago I memorized Proverbs 31:10-31. This was in the midst of our infertility struggle and our transition into adoptive parenting. I was so excited at the time to “become” the Proverbs 31 woman and stay home to serve my husband and my soon-to-be-child. Fast forward to today, and I struggle with this chapter. Daily. Hourly. Sometimes by the second.
There is so much pressure on the Christian woman to BE the Proverbs 31 woman, and it is dang near impossible. First of all, I don’t sew. Second, I don’t have servants (although how wonderful would that be!). Third, I don’t own a vineyard. Get the picture?
In chapter one, Amy (can I call you Amy?) covers myths surrounding the Proverbs 31 woman. The myth with which I most struggle is the myth that she was/is supposed to be a real person or combination of real people. I mean, I am a (recovering) perfectionist; if I can’t do it welll (perfectly), then I don’t want to do it at all. If I cannot accomplish my ten-item “to do” list every day, if I don’t even fill it out the night before (because I am busy interacting with my family), then I feel like an utter failure. And here is this woman in the Bible that every day accomplishes a list a mile long!!
The thing that triggered a mind change for me was covered under the first myth, and that was to read Matthew 6. Go ahead and read it, I’ll wait. Now re-read Matthew 6:33. Here, I’ll type it out for you:
“But seek first HIS kingdom and HIS righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” (Matthew 6:33, NIV)
So if I seek God and His plan for my minute, hour, day, week – if I seek God and His plan for my reactions to my family and for my “to do” list – then He will give me everything else? And I don’t mean things like servants and vineyards, I mean things like energy to serve when I don’t want to and the supernatural power to not be selfish?
Those are the things I need everyday: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness and self-control. (sound familiar to anyone?) And if I seek God first, those things will be given to me?
Yes!!! I would much rather seek God first than try to accomplish the checklist of the Proverbs 31 woman.
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