There is so much we can address and learn from the virtuous woman described in Proverbs 31. Upon rereading this familiar passage and asking myself how we girls should apply its principles as daughters, I asked myself a question. “When/if I am a homemaker in ten years, what would be the most likely area that I would regret not having invested enough in as a young girl?”
While I could see the great disadvantage of not being efficient in many of the physical skills that the Proverbs 31 woman is blessed with, what I realized would be more detrimental and important would be my walk with God. The true beauty of the virtuous woman is her inner strength, and virtue, and love for God.
This is where a mother’s and wife’s true strength flows from: her Maker and Master. I have been sobered by the testimonies of both young and well-established mothers, who testify that after they have been blessed with their own home and family, those quiet uninterrupted mornings they had as girls are no longer a daily occurrence. Daily personal Bible time as we girls know it is a rarity for many busy homemakers.
One veteran mother shared how she often has to “fall back on” the many verses she had hidden in her heart in her youth and the walk that she established with her Savior before she had married. This is now a great blessing to her, as she is still able to remain in communion with Him even though she cannot always set aside time to read His Word daily. Because she had wisely invested in this relationship in her early years, it has continued to remain a strong and strengthening support as life rolls on.
This testimony encouraged me to ponder my own life and the way I spend my time. Will I be able to say this later in my own life? Have I spent the freedom and time of youth to seek my Heavenly Father? If I am honest, I see how I have failed. Seeking Him and His righteousness is truly what matters! Matthew 6:33 says:
“Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.”
Everything else that we need will flow from this. When we earnestly seek God and diligently pray, He truly will bless our earnest seeking. James 4:8 promises:
“Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.”
Yet we have a responsibility in this; we must seek Him and draw nigh unto Him — make it a priority in our hearts. Are we willing to do what it takes to draw nigh unto our Maker? Do we say and think we are willing, but do not find ourselves making the actual effort and sacrifice for it to be a reality in our life?
This is what I have realized is too true for me; I desire to know the Lord and to study His Word, but have not made it a high priority in my day, when I sit down to read my Bible. Instead, I am too often in a hurry to skim over a few chapters, and whisper a short prayer. Until I am ready to really seek Him and dig deep in His Word — to study the words, underline special passages, link parallel verses together, fall on my knees in prayer — until then, I will not experience the great blessing God is willing to bestow the diligent seeker of His Word. Thus, my prayer lately has been:
“When thou saidst, Seek ye my face; my heart said unto thee, Thy face, LORD, will I seek.” – Psalm 27:8
I have set aside a specific amount of time to spend with the Lord each day. As I see how little I truly know of God’s Word, and how much there is to find in His Law, Psalm 119:18 and 34 has become my prayer each morning:
“Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law. Give me understanding, and I shall keep thy law; yea, I shall observe it with my whole heart.”
We cannot truly see the wonders and deep beauties of God’s Word until He has blessed our spiritual understanding. I would encourage you to use these and similar verses found in Psalm 119 as your personal prayer before you being your daily devotions. I have been reading a stanza from Psalm 119 each morning, and since there are 22, there is one for almost every day of the month. In this chapter of Psalms, God’s Law is referenced in nearly every verse.
One of my 2011 goals was to memorize more of God’s Word, and by His grace, I have been able to memorize a few chapters and many special verses— already they have been sources of great encouragement to me. At first, while I was having trouble remembering the verse order, I wondered how these verses would benefit me when I couldn’t even seem to remember them now, when I am reviewing them daily! I wondered, “How could they come back to my mind in later years?!” I questioned if it would really help in the long term.
A few nights later, my doubts were quieted when those very verses came to mind and kept running on, without me even trying to recall them! The Lord has used them to wash my mind and refresh me in His beautiful Words, when a Bible was not handy. Truly, our time is never wasted when we spend it in God’s Word.
Memorizing Scripture sounds great and is something we each probably want to do, but again, have we made it a priority? Have we put the energy and time into it? It requires dedication, effort and diligence, but it is well-paid. If you have never memorized God’s Word before, I would highly encourage you to begin. Make a reachable goal to reach in memorizing and establish accountability (friend or family member).
During my Bible reading, as the Lord has spoken to me with special verses or passages, I have marked those places down on a “Scripture Memory To-Do List,” so that I can memorize that portion “next.” A few such passages have been Psalm 8, 103, 1 Peter 2 and 3, James 1, Ephesians 3:14-21 and others.
Lately when I was struggling with trusting the Lord and finding peace in His will, the following passages became precious encouragements to me: Isaiah 60:1-2, Psalm 24:4-5, 27:4 and 8, 61:1-4, Philippians 4:6-7, Isaiah 26:3, II Corinthians 12:9, and II Chronicles 20:17. I would write down one of these “gems” each morning and keep it in my pocket, so that I could read them instead of worry! Each of these verses seemed to be written just for my situation — and brought me to worship my God all the more in thankfulness for Who He is and the plan He has for me. The passage I had earlier memorized, Psalm 116, became the cry of my own lips:
“I love the LORD, because he hath heard my voice and my supplications. Because he hath inclined his ear unto me, therefore will I call upon him as long as I live.” – Psalm 116:1
The more you read God’s Word and the more treasures you encounter, the more you will find that you just can’t seem to memorize them fast enough! There is always more to learn! May I encourage you also, to remember the verse references for the verses the Lord has spoken to you through, so that you can share them later with friends and know where to find them when needed.
Why don’t you make it your number one, highest goal and challenge for the next month, to seek the Lord while He may be found, to call upon Him while He is near (Isaiah 55:6)? Set aside this time and spend an hour each day, laying aside all distractions, and humbly pouring out your heart in surrender to Him. Ask for wisdom and spiritual understanding as you read His Word, pray for family and yourself, that you will be wholly surrendered to His hourly will, meditate on His character, worship at His feet, and memorize His Word. This will be a great blessing to you — and those around you, as you shine forth the radiance you gain at His feet — as you develop this foundation with your Master that can never be moved.
When you carry the responsibilities of a wife, mother, housekeeper and adult, you will never regret the time you invested. And I don’t think your future husband would tell you, when you are serving alongside him with strength and virtue, that he wished you had not invested in your walk with Christ before your marriage. Remember, the wise woman:
“will do[her husband] good and not evil all the days of her life.” – Proverbs 31:12
Blessings to you, as you seek our God who:
“wilt shew [us] the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.” – Psalm 16:11
Authored by Sarah Bryant