01 jun 15
she makes coverings for herself; her clothing is fine linen and purple.
i don’t neglect myself in my care for our family and i take care with my appearance.
what i originally wrote earlier last month was i take care of my husband and make sure i look nice. but when i read it today, it did not seem as on target as what i thought about this morning. it also touches on a sore spot for me. i go a little crazy when i hear moms say things like, my children are my life, and i do everything for my kids. there are so many levels of wrongness with those statements that i could get on my soapbox for days.
so instead of a rant, i decided to look up what the coverings for herself meant…and it appears that she is making sure her bed looks nice. so it looks like i take care of my husband might be what i should have stuck with, wink wink.
Help me to take care of myself in a way that brings glory to you, God; to love my neighbor as myself. so i need to be loving myself, but in light of your love for me. teach me to see myself as you see me in order to keep myself in the right perspective. i want our girls to grow up knowing who they are in you and having the confidence that can only come from accepting your love and view of them.
29 may 15
she is not afraid of the snow for her household, for all her household are clothed with scarlet
i don’t fear bad weather or disaster because I have done what I can to prepare my family and to care for them
do I plan for the things that happen with our family? i feel like the preparation i need to do is spiritual just as much, if not more, than physical. we don’t live in a place where nature can overtake you (at least, not in a way that you can prepare for other than stocking up on water and canned goods during hurricane season), but i can prepare myself spiritually for life’s events and see that our kids are prepared for the things that will happen. give them the tools to deal with disappointment, hurts, success, physical pain, love…
i know that working through this proverbs 31 passage and having the habit of meeting with you , God, is preparing me for snowy weather. guide me to other ways to get ready for life and to prepare our household for the lives you are giving us to live.
28 may 15
she extends her hand to the poor; and she stretches out her hands to the needy
i am genrous to those who don’t have
this one is sometimes difficult because i think of the panhandlers and homeless people we see all over since we live in a warm climate. for a long time i just ignored them. then i would give out of guilt. for a while (pre husband and kids years) i kept water and snack kits in my car. and there are times that i would buy extra when i saw someone on my way to a drive-thru. and i have gone back and forth about whether to give money or not give money…i normally just try to take it on a case by case basis and pray about what i can and should do.
i don’t know – because i also think of the spiritually needy. and victims of trafficking. and people who have honestly just had a hard life. and the needy are everywhere. and i always struggle with what is enough? not that i am thinking that i do enough, but there are times i could pour myself out and have nothing left, which might or might not be God’s will for me. so even though this might seem a bit simplistic, i can only say that i have found that i need to be in constant conversation with the Holy Spirit to know where and when to help. and then move forward.
God, please teach me to be generous. to raise grateful and generous children. and to teach them from example.
27 may 15
she stretches out her hands to the distaff, and her hands grasp the spindle
i do my work for our family with determination and perseverance – even the distasteful jobs
so, on first pass, i thought, i got nothin’! on my second and third reading of the verse, i was thinking, i still got nothin’. but this morning when i sat down to journal, after writing the verse, i wrote “determination?” i think i wrote that word because i remember reading a book about a girl who had to spin or help with the spinning and her hands were cracked and bleeding until they became calloused to her work. so while in modern america we might romanticize about spinning our own yarn to make clothes (that we may or may not actually need), the truth is that it is hard work. especially if it is all you have to do. or if it is the only way that you will get clothes for your family. so “determination” came from the idea that she does the hard work that she knows has to be done, but she does it willingly and with the goal of finishing so her family will be clothed.
i decided to look it up in a commentary, since i was having a difficult time placing it in my life. i came across an excerpt from the jamieson-fausset-brown bible commentary (of which i had never before heard) and this is what it said, no work, however mean, if honest is disdained. so it appears that spinning might not have been the choice chore of the woman of the house, but yet she does it with steadfastness and determination.
thank you, God, for our sweet family and that you have given me the ability to care for them in every way. let me serve them cheerfully and wholeheartedly in obedience to you, even if i find the tasks unpleasant.
26 may 13
she senses that her gain is good; her lamp does not go out at night
i know what i am doing is profitable and i work hard at it
even when it doesn’t feel like it or i don’t see it right away, what i am doing is bearing fruit in the lives of my family and for God, so i continue to work hard.
one of the difficult things about parenting is that i do not necessarily see the fruits (good or bad!) of what i’m doing right away, so i have to be sure that i am doing what i am with purpose, at the Holy Spirit’s direction. then i can know it will bear godly fruit.
God, let me allow your Spirit to guide my day so even when i do not feel “complete” at the end of each day, i know i have done what you have given me to do (john 17:4). let me sense your presence guiding, directing me and work hard at the tasks before me. thank you for my family and the ability to work for them.
22 may 15
she girds herself with strength, and makes her arms strong.
i am not lazy, but i’m strong and ready to work, energetic
of course it comes to this, God! i was just thinking yesterday how it is interesting that there are not any direct verses where you command exercise (i.e. thou shalt sweat, or workest thine muscles until they ache). i am not saying this is it, but exercise (and eating good foods) is really the best way to make myself strong and energetic. i think this can also tie into giving my family my best (proverbs 31:14), because what seven, five, four, and two year olds wouldn’t want their mom running, playing and wrestling with them? so, it it time well spent with the kids as well as being active: win win!
God, teach me to find delight in taking care of my body as well as our family.
21 may 15
she considers a field and buys it, from her earnings she plants a vineyard.
i am financially aware: productive and re-investing
i can’t even imagine having “my own money” or knowing what to do with it if i did. i do not want our girls to be ignorant about money. show me, God, how to become more knowledgable.
i read this book when i was single and actually started down the road to becoming financially literate, so i might need a re-read of the financially confident woman and her monthly newsletter which it looks like has changed into a blog, www.everydaycheapskate.com.