Tuesday, October 13, 2015
"On Fire": What Would 'He' Say About Your 'Wife Character' Right Now?
[ Hymn to a Good Wife ] "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!"---Proverbs 31:10-31(Message)
A couple of days ago...
I read an article on People's website about football player Devon Still and his fiancee' Asha Joyce.
If you're not familiar with who he is, he and his five-year-old daughter Leah have become pretty well known because they have been open about her cancer battle. Below is a picture of Leah walking a runway during New York Fashion Week last month and reportedly (praise the Lord!), she still remains in remission:
The amount of love and affection that is expressed between Leah and her father has always captured my attention. However, the reason why they are being mentioned on this blog platform is because of some things that Devon said about his fiancee':
Accepting the Jimmy V Perseverance Award at the 2015 ESPYs in July, Still recalled the "nightmare" of first receiving Leah's diagnosis, and how he found solace in praying with Asha, also 26, during the long nights that followed. "You stood by my side, you let me know that you weren't going anywhere, that you were going to be there for me," he said, later adding, "I promise you I'm going to try and give you the wedding of your dreams." ...
"Having Asha by my side has definitely made it easier to travel down this path. Overcoming the things we've overcome … I'm just looking forward to what the future holds for us," Still says. "We'll make it through whatever is thrown our way."
Devon found solace in praying with Asha.
She stood by his side during some of the hardest moments of his life.
She was committed to remain...to endure.
She's made things easier for him.
It has made him confident that they can handle whatever comes up the road.
OK, I hope everyone caught that the first point is that *they pray together*. This means that they have a faith foundation and system (2 Corinthians 6:11-18). It's important that any couple who wants to enter into the union that GOD CREATED (Genesis 2:24-25) seek God for divine wisdom (James 1:5) about if 1) they even need to be together to begin with; 2) how to court based on biblical standards and 3) how to follow God's leading concerning timing, etc.
And personally, being that it's Christ who gives us strength to do all things (Philippians 4:13), I wouldn't be surprised in the least if Asha has said that it was her faith, *not just her love for Devon and Leah*, that got her through some of the most trying of times.
Yeah, there's no telling how many single women are in relationships that they have *absolutely no business being in* because they are not putting their faith where it belongs (IN GOD--Mark 11:22). And there's also no telling how many single women are not seeing who God has for them...basically for the same reason. After all, how can any of us become a good wife if we're not first striving to be an excellent daughter to our Heavenly Father?
Yet the main point of today's message is that although Devon and Asha are betrothed and yet not married, already he's speaking of her being a woman with strong wifely character. And personally, I find that to be both awesome as well as inspiring!
That's why I think it's important for all single women who desire to be married to spend time in Proverbs 31. In this season because it that says "a good woman is hard to find", "her husband trusts her without reserve" and "she's never spiteful and treats him generously all the days of his life". Oh, and that her husband praises her for well surpassing so many other women who do wonderful things. That she truly is above a diamond (and a ruby's) worth. She is priceless.
A good woman is hard to find...
The New King James Version of Proverbs 31:10 puts it this way: "Who can find a virtuous wife? For her worth is far above rubies."
A good and virtuous woman doesn't come a dime a dozen! Oh, quite the contrary in fact. And yet, there are so many single women out here who are talking about how hard it is to find a good man. Hmm, that's debatable. I actually know quite a few. And the bigger point is I wonder how many of the woman who make such a bold statement are making sure that they are what God considers to be a "good woman" and "virtuous":
Virtuous: conforming to moral and ethical principles; morally excellent; upright; chaste
Chaste: refraining from sexual intercourse that is regarded as contrary to morality or religion; virtuous; not engaging in sexual relations; celibate; free from obscenity; decent; undefiled or stainless; pure in style; not excessively ornamented; simple
It doesn't say that *a woman* is hard to find or that *a woman* is worth more than precious and expensive gems. It says that a woman who is morally excellent, righteous, pious (having or showing a dutiful spirit of reverence for God or an earnest wish to fulfill religious obligations), celibate and pure in style (nice) is.
If you aren't this kind of woman (yet), this is the kind that a godly husband deserves...
And if you are striving to be this kind of woman, this is a reminder that this is how you should remain.
Just as Devon saw the faith-full-ness in Asha before he proposed to her...
If your future husband is God's best for you, he's going to be looking for similar character traits.
Unfortunately, I know many women who have not treated themselves as if they were "above a diamond or ruby's worth" which led them to biblically compromise which resulted in relationally settling which ultimately resulted in them not gaining the man they wanted's heart or trust. It actually caused him to question her and distance himself from her (especially emotionally). In fact, not too long ago, I had a conversation with a guy who told me that he puts up emotional walls/barriers with women he's been sexually active with because although he knows that sex outside of marriage is wrong (keep a brotha lifted), he can never really trust the ones who are willing to engage him in that way.
Hmph. In the Garden of Eden, the serpent told the Woman to go against God's instructions, that she "would not surely die" if she did (Genesis 3). Today, he's still using that same tired line. Wanna cause severe (and I mean, *severe*) damage to your relationship? Focus more on "being good" *to* your guy physically over being good *for* him spiritually! Remember, Adam and Eve didn't die immediately. They did die though...and there was some suffering that came along the way as well.
God knows what he's doing when his Word tells us things like...
Do not be unequally yoked with non-believers...
Wait until marriage to have sex...
And to put him above anyone and everything else.
In many ways and for many reasons, it's preparation for ultimately becoming the kind of woman who is hard to find (which means you shouldn't just take "any date" or spend time with "any man" who asks), who her husband can call "blessed"...the kind of wife of godly character later because you are such a woman of good character (Colossians 3:12-17) now!
Amen? AMEN! ;-)