She rises while it is still night and gives food to her household.
I do not know about you, but I enjoy fulfilling this verse! Getting up while the house is dark and everyone else is asleep, going out to the kitchen and beginning to work, can give you such a thrill! Just think, “this is what the lady in Proverbs 31 did!” Of course she did not have the refrigerator, freezer, stove or any of our other “new ” inventions that make our time in the kitchen easier, but she was up working for her family and so can we! To look and see the moon bright with it’s amazing light and the starry sky is surely a gift from our Father on high!
If you have a father and/or brother(s) who must leave the house before breakfast time, and have not done what I am about to say, I strongly encourage you to see if they would like you to prepare some food for them. They may not want it, they could perhaps not want anything to eat that early or maybe they just want to get their own food, but maybe, just maybe they would like a woman’s hand preparing something for them.
If so, know what time they want to be out by, then get up in enough time to prepare what you think best. It does not need to be anything extravagant, just something to nourish them. Some ideas are: fruit and yogurt (I usually cut up a banana and then put some yogurt, honey, and raisins, on top. I really like when we have other fruit like apple, grapes, strawberries, peaches, and berries to add for variation. Nuts are also good), toast, cereal or granola, egg sandwich, and hash- browns or fried potatoes. You might also want to send them lunch, I usually send sandwiches (turkey, chicken, egg, tuna and egg, cream cheese and tomato, and meat loaf are usual ones. For the turkey and chicken ones we cut the meat up in small pieces then add green olives or pickles, mayonnaise or mustard (or both), salt and pepper, and Sriracha to flavor it up.). Salads are also good. Our men should not have to be up alone wandering around the kitchen when we are there fully able to help him out, in my opinion.
A few years ago, I began getting up to help my mother prepare breakfast, lunch and drinks for my father. Then my older brother started going, and now my little brother who sometimes goes too. Now us four oldest girls divide into two groups that rotate days for “getting the guys ready for work”. It is such a blessing to be able to serve them in this way, our men work so hard in hot and cold, and in very undesirable conditions, and this is a small way to show our appreciation.
It is not always an easy job and waking up may be one of the last things I want to do. But there are some things that I have learned to do that have really helped which I want to share. First, and probably most important, I give thanks for a new day, and the ability to help out, and anything else that can come to my sleepy mind.
I also pray for help with getting along with my helper. It can be so easy to be controlling or get offended, ruining a opportunity in serving our Savior and King by having a wrong attitude, and what good is it when we are working for him but our hearts are far away? Making quick moves helps too; if I hop out of bed I feel much “lighter” and awake than if I drag myself out. Smiling gives me a more cheerful attitude. Sometimes I will just stand in front of a mirror and give myself a big smile! Which in turn makes me smile more at my silliness!
Singing is also a good way to be cheerful. Washing my face with cold water cuts down the “fog” some. Last but not least, is what sound the alarm makes that I wake up to. For awhile, I was using my brother’s alarm clock that makes that high pitch beep, beep, beep sound. To this day, the beeping of a watch or alarm clock is almost as bad in my ears as the scratching of a knife against a metal or glass plate making that awful noise. The clock broke so I began to use a cell phone instead. What a difference! If I feel tired and want a calm awakening I set it on Greenday or some other gentle piece. If I have plenty of energy and want a bouncy beginning, I set it on a more up-beat piece that I may feel like dancing out of bed to:). What a difference music in the morning can make.
Those are some things that have helped me, but the bottom line would be: a right attitude. “For YHWH is not unjust as to forget your works and the love which you have shown towards His name, in having and in still ministering to the saints.” (Hebrews 6:10)
Sisters, I hope I have encouraged you to find a new way to serve your families. Maybe you can just make a cup of coffee, anything that would be a blessing would be good. Serving in this way has richly blessed my life and I believe it would do the same for you. Not only have I learned to manage the kitchen better, to come up with meals when I do not have much to work with, to wake up when I would rather sleep in, and many other things, but I have been able to spend more time with my Heavenly Father, reading his word and praying, than I would if I had slept in. Time with Him is the most precious gift there is!
Authored by Ruth Washburn