“A good woman is hard to find, and worth far more than diamonds.” (Prov 31:10 MSG) Or, in the NIV, “A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies”
I never thought too much about Proverbs 31 until my friend Aleica told me the story behind it. In the Hebrew, it is an alphabetical acrostic that Solomon’s mother, Bathsheba, would have sung or recited to him. Each phrase is a character trait she wanted him to look for in a wife.
You can read this Description of a Good Woman here.
It’s interesting that God saw fit to save this ancient wisdom for us. He must still feel it’s important for men to look for these qualities, and for us as women to try and learn them. In addition to scripture, I’ve had the blessing of learning (well, attempting to learn) from my own mother. In honor of Mother’s Day, I’ve written the modern-day traits I’ve seen lived out by my own mom, following the order of Proverbs 31.
A good woman is hard to find, and worth far more than diamonds.(vs.10)
My dad trusts her and she has made his life better in every way. She never tries to hurt, shame, or take from him. (vs.11-12)
She has always worked hard: as a special ed teacher, a mom of four, a neighbor, a friend, a servant in the church. (vs.13)
She has traveled the world- from Egypt to Australia, Europe to Latin America. She was sport to backpack on her honeymoon and had to hitchhike her way home after getting lost in the mountains. Who is she!? (vs.14)
She does not get up early. She’s a rebel like that. She stays up late and makes sure everything gets done. She is never moody. Her peaceful and loving spirit is what keeps our home together. (vs.15)
She feeds anyone who crosses her doorstep. Growing up, she stretched out my dad’s salary to feed 3 growing boys, my dad, and me. She silently prepared thousands of breakfasts, packed our lunches, and we had a home cooked dinner around the table nearly every night of my life. I believe most of who I am today was shaped at that table. Today, she hosts 30 people every Tuesday for bible study without batting an eye. (vs.16-19)
She extends her hand to the poor, welcoming anyone and everyone into our home and church. She knows the name of every neighbor living on her street (in Orange County I might add), and makes a point to walk over with baked goods on a regular basis. She often invites them to church, even when they’ve turned her down before. She gets the life story of our grocery checker before we pay the bill. This used to embarrass me. It’s only now that I am appropriately astounded at the rare and powerful gift she provides others and the security she has in Jesus that gives her the courage to do so. (vs.20)
When you shop with her, she will buy you what you want:) It’s awesome. (vs.21)
She made our clothes growing up. I’m ok that she only does this now upon special request. (vs.22)
She brings honor to my dad’s name. Good choice, dad. (vs.23)
“Strength and dignity are her clothing” (vs. 25) She is strong. She gave birth four times without pain meds before it was hip. More importantly, she will not make me feel bad if I one day do the opposite.
“She smiles at the future.” (vs 25) Well….mom is a BIG worrier….But, she trusts my dad 100% to provide and be there for us.
She is the most kind, patient, and sacrificial person that I know. (vs.26)
She works hard is not lazy. (vs. 27)
My siblings and I love her dearly. (vs.28)
In a culture obsessed with beauty, my mom wears hardly any makeup and never has. I tease her for it but deep down I know watching her wake up every day truly satisfied in who she is, just as God made her, has made a lasting impact on me and how I view my worth.
“Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain, But a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised.” vs 30.
I love you, mom.
And to all you moms out there, for all the different ways you live Prov 31 out in your own way, I hope you feel loved and celebrated!