Sunday, July 05, 2015

Week Nine Bible Study: Morning

Take a moment to pray ladies, this week's study will hit home in all our hearts. Pray to be ready to listen and obey. Then, read Proverbs 31:10-31

10 Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.
11 The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil.
12 She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.
13 She seeketh wool, and flax, and worketh willingly with her hands.
14 She is like the merchants' ships; she bringeth her food from afar.
15 She riseth also while it is yet night, and giveth meat to her household, and a portion to her maidens.
16 She considereth a field, and buyeth it: with the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard.
17 She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms.
18 She perceiveth that her merchandise is good: her candle goeth not out by night.
19 She layeth her hands to the spindle, and her hands hold the distaff.
20 She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth forth her hands to the needy.
21 She is not afraid of the snow for her household: for all her household are clothed with scarlet.
22 She maketh herself coverings of tapestry; her clothing is silk and purple.
23 Her husband is known in the gates, when he sitteth among the elders of the land.
24 She maketh fine linen, and selleth it; and delivereth girdles unto the merchant.
25 Strength and honour are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come.
26 She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.
27 She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness.
28 Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her.
29 Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all.
30 Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised.
31 Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates.

 Mary Cassat

We are specifically studying verse 15 this week. The virtuous wife arises while it is still night. It makes one wonder: "when exactly does she sleep? She rises before dawn, her candle doesn't go out at night, but she still transforms flax into clothing, brings food from afar and manages to speak with kindness?"

As you read the verses again, underline the word night with a black pen or pencil and mentally note where they appear. Now we're going to do a word study looking at the phrase she riseth.  These definitions sound like a valian, woman of valor rising! Take notes on what you read, especially where you see her becoming powerful. She knows she is on a mission the moment she awakes and she is ready to move into action.

Quickly, look at the phrase arise night. Looking at all the verses that speak of during the night, what sort of activities generally take place?

Now, look at arose night. Look again at the verses specifically mentioning arising during the night. Is there a similar pattern? Some mighty men of valor make an appearance in some of these verses as well!

The woman of valor arises while it is still night to do battle, to conquer. 

Add the phrase "rises while it is yet night" to the page in your notebook labelled Military Images.  

As she tackles the beginning of her day, the valiant wife gives "meat to her household" to all that dwell with her.

Look at the word meat. This is a strong word. You can look at other translations as you scroll (and click the other tabs for more information). Notice the word spoil in there. Look at the other verses associated with this word. Many speak of lions hunting and devouring their prey. This lady takes the feeding her household quite seriously. She is preparing them for their day!

And that is just what she turns to next. 

The meaning of the word portion here does not mean how large a piece of cake may be that she is serving. It speaks of a prescribed task or statute. 

Beatrix Potter

The word maidens tells us more. Is this why she is able to get so much done, because she has servants? She is starting out her day by feeding them and then assigning their tasks, their portions, for the day. Note: this word could also include her daughters being among those receiving their assignments. 

But, lest we smugly huff and say "No wonder we can't keep up with her!" let us check ourselves and look around our homes. We do have servants, we just don't feed them. On our kitchen counters, our laundry rooms, our cupboards, our garages. We have all sorts of "maidens" who assist us in our work.

As we start our day, we can imitate the Proverbs 31 Woman in at least three ways:

We can tackle our day with a plan. We'll be much better stewards of our God given time with one.

We can give direction and tasks to our children. A good wife and mother is a good delegator. She is able to lighten her load so she can serve in other ways and helps her children learn to do work.

We can put our servants to work. Whether that is a load of laundry in the washer before breakfast so it is ready for the dryer when breakfast is done, soup in the stock pot on the stove for lunch or meat in the crockpot so dinner is ready after a busy day of errands (then followed by oatmeal in the clean crock so breakfast is ready in the morning). All of these edify our Lord. Try adding some music to set the tone for the day first thing in the morning as well.

And always pray. Pray about this verse and what we have studied. What can we learn about the valiant wife? In what ways can our fear of God display itself in our morning routines, planning of our days and in our employment of the helpers God has given us? Jot down some quick ideas to get you started in your notebook. 

Cicely Mary Barker

If you struggle getting up in the morning what steps can you take to make it easier? Making a to do list the night before helps me. Waking up with hymns and a Bible study helps me to set my mood as well. Do some prayerful brainstorming and then, move valiantly forward ladies!

With Our Children

Read Proverbs 31:15 together and explain what you learned about maidens in your study. 

15 She riseth also while it is yet night, and giveth meat to her household, and a portion to her maidens.

Then, have a maiden hunt in your house. How many maidens can they find that hep do all the work that it takes to run a household? Look for faucets, appliances, heaters, vacuums, etc.

When done, offer each child who is old enough the responsibility of operating one of these maidens. Even young children can be helpful with these, do not underestimate them!

 To further this less, make use of their help gathering the materials for breakfast tomorrow morning. Discuss what you will be making and the work that goes into doing so. In the morning, hide the ingredients separately through the house (take care with items like eggs). Then let the children hunt for them! When all the prey has been captured return to the kitch and assign duties to each child. Enjoy breakfast then use a maiden to clean it all up before sitting down for your next lesson together.

Blessings and encouragement in the week ahead,


1 comment:

  1. I have been speaking Proverbs 31: 10-31 over myself for the past few weeks. I agree that having a plan helps! I get so much more accomplished on the days I have a plan and feel lost on the days that i don't.