I try not to play the comparison game with other women. It is not fair of me to measure myself to someone else, when the only standard I should be worried about is how I measure up to Jesus. However, that is so hard to do. The woman whom I most often compare myself to is a standard that I will never be able to reach. So, why do I do it? Its frustrating, but I do it anyway. Who is this woman? Well, I believe she is the one all Godly women should strive to be like. She can be found in the book of Proverbs, chapter 31. Using The Message, an interpretation of the Scriptures, I want to share with you the woman I want to become.
"Her husband trusts her without reserve, and never has reason to regret it." I do not EVER want to give my dh reason to distrust me, or to question my motives for anything I do. I want my motives and actions to be above reproach at all times.
"She's up before dawn, preparing breakfast for her family and organizing her day." Anyone who knows me, knows that I hate mornings. I do not function well early in the morning. However, now that I have a large family, I must become more diligent is getting up and making sure everyone is fed. Victoria starts school this week. With prayer, I start work this week, also. I am taking it upon myself to ensure that she has a filling breakfast to keep her going until lunch time. If I eat also, I will be less apt to stop at McDonald's for food on my way to work, too.
"She looks over a field and buys it, then, with money she's put aside, plants a garden." I will be working outside the home. I have chosen to do this for a few reasons, but the most important being that I need a break from this house in order to be a kind, sweet person. I have chosen (or it chose me...) a profession that I am skilled in, and that pays very well. I consider my calling to be an interpreter in ASL to be not only a gift from God to teach His children about Him, but also a wonderful way to care for my family. With the money I will be earning, I will be able to care for my family is a wise way. Father, please show me how to be a faithful steward of the provision You will provide!
"First thing in the morning, she dresses for work, rolls up her sleeves, eager to get started. She senses the worth of her work, and is in no hurry to call it quits for the day." I have learned that if I stay in my jammies all day, the only thing I want to do is sleep and be lazy. I MUST get up, get dressed and be about my work. When I put on my clothes, it seems to make me more diligent about doing my job. Also, I take pride in making sure that, most days, I dress well. I do not want my husband to look at me and see a slob. I want him to be proud of me, even if I am just at home. I want to look my best, as often as I can, to encourage myself to be the best I can, and to please his eye.
"She's skilled in the crafts of home and hearth, diligent in homemaking." I am not prideful about many things, but I am proud that I was wise enough to learn from my Grandma and my Mom how to take care of a home, and how to cook filling, healthy, and inexpensive meals for my family. I am still learning to sew to the skill level I want, but that will come with practice. I still have much to learn, but no one in my home goes hungry!!!
"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...she designs gowns and sells them...her clothes are well made and elegant, she always faces tomorrow with a smile." I can't wait until I can get my sewing machine and start sewing clothes again. I want to make pajamas for everyone, and even some clothes for Victoria to wear for school and church. I want to dress modestly, covering myself well, as to not let the world see the body that only my husband is to know. I want to make some long skirts for myself, and my sister wives if they wish. I long for my clothes to not only flatter, but to be lovely. I want my husband to look at me and be honored that I am keeping myself for him alone, and looking nice to bring respect to myself, as well as to him. My smile and positive attitude MUST proceed me each day. I want to look at each new day as a blessing from the Lord, and as a new day to care for the family He has blessed me with.
"When she speaks, she has something worthwhile to say, and she always says it kindly." This is one I must continue to work on. I do not want idle words pouring from my mouth, but words that are edifying and encouraging. I want to raise my daughters to be strong women of God, and my sons to know how to treat their future wives. I want each of them to know how to run a home in a Godly manner. I want my sister-wives to know that I love them for who they are, and only wish to encourage them to be the women that I know God has made them to be. Never do I want to compare anyone to anyone else. I want each member of my family to be who God made them to be, not like anyone else. I want my wonderful husband to hear words of encouragement from me, not words to tear him down or belittle him. He is a man of God, and I want to bless him daily.
"She keeps an eye on everyone in her household, and keeps them busy and productive." I don't think anyone here thinks I need anymore work on this one! I just hope they understand I do not "crack the whip" to be mean or nasty, but so that we can work in harmony and keep our home orderly so that we can ENJOY our lives!!! Not to mention, idle hands are the devil's playground!
"Her children respect and bless her, her husband joins in with words of praise: 'Many women have done wonderful things, but you have outclassed them all.'" Most of my children are too young to "bless" me at this point. When I am old, and even gone onto being with my God, I want them to look back on my life and know that I did my best to raise them in a Godly manner; making them all they could be. I want my husband to be proud of me everyday, and see me as a Godly wife.
"Charm can mislead, and beauty quickly 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." I am not the most beautiful woman in the world, nor do I want to be. I am good at public speaking, but do not have the charm to wow millions. These vanities are empty. I want to live a life that puts God first. I want Him to be the center of my attention, the reason I do everything, and the very purpose of my life here on earth. I do not do this for the glory and adoration I may receive, but for the reason that He deserves my love and adoration. My Savior left his Throne in Heaven- the center of all praise and glory- to take my sin, abuse, depression, illnesses, and everything else off of me. Jesus came to teach me how to live, to die in my place, and to conquer Death so that I can be united with him in Heaven when my life is over. I want to give Him every day of my life.
I am making a lot of changes in my life. I am dressing more modest (I can't dress much more modestly), wearing more skirts and higher cut shirts. I am cutting out soda, and drinking much more water. I will only eat foods that will encourage my body to be healthy (with the occasional chocolate as needed). I want to take care of myself so that I can be around for my children as they grow. I want to be beautiful both inwardly and outwardly for my husband. I want to be proud of the Temple that God has given me to serve Him in while I roam this earth.