I know I promised you that this post would discuss what fearing the Lord looks like, but today has been a day.
At this point in the day I am standing here at the computer, thankful for my Gigi Handmade Baby sling in which I hold my baby girl. The baby who will not be put down without apocalyptic screaming because of a sore tummy, who is at this point staring cross-eyed (which does cause me some concern, but my mom says it’s normal) at the inside of her sling. It hasn’t been so bad a day, really, in comparison to some I’ve known. The dog, who is at this point following me around picking up dropped bits of sandwich I was finally able to make after eating 4 oatmeal cookies (the only thing I thought I would be able to eat while holding said baby, see above). She has had a great day, this basset hound of mine, including a wonderful outdoor adventure, unplanned, during which I had to chase her through our snow-filled back alley in my bare feet. Unrepentant, she has consumed the parts of my sandwich off of my vacuumed floor; for which I am actually quite grateful. My almost 2 year old son is upstairs sleeping after consuming more bran muffins than is good for anyone and three falls off of the kitchen chairs resulting in hurt feelings but hopefully no permanent damage. He too has had a good day, consisting of the growth spurt induced tumbles and eating flour out of the bag with a melon baller.
Days like these are made up of elements that can make the world of the woman of Noble Character seem inaccessible. Days when your deodorant fails (provided you remembered to put some on), you end up yelling at your children, eating junk, and generally lamenting the fact that you haven’t had time yet to sit down for more than 15 minutes. We all have days like this in our own variations, bad days at work where you forgot that presentation, people yelled at you all day, you were late for that ministry meeting at church and found out that a teen that you had been talking to got their girlfriend pregnant. You know, those sorts of days.
It seems like the woman in Proverbs 31 never had those kind of days. She had infinite patience, brain power, strength, humor, business savvy, and wisdom. Why can’t I be like that? I think the first thing that I need to remember is that no one is like that! This woman would have had hard days, days where her business schemes went awry, she got out of bed with a sore back and in a bad mood, and you can’t tell me that though she had servants they weren’t sometimes part of the problem. I like to think of this Epilogue as a sort of eulogy. Studies show that when people remember back over their lives it is the good things and good memories that stand out, not the bad ones. This woman, business person, wife, mother, humanitarian, would have had her bad days, but it is her legacy that matters. This is the portrait of an ideal, the best parts of a person.
When I look at this passage I see how I would want to be remembered. I would like this portrait of a woman to reflect the attributes that I showed in life. I am far from perfect, as this day has shown, but when I look at this woman who fears the Lord I see what I hope is my future legacy. At the end of my life I want people to say “She was a woman who feared the Lord”. I want that fear and reverence to be shown in how I treat people, how I handled myself, how my very existence reflected God’s love and glory in my small part of the world. I see that there is a bigger picture shown in this chapter; a picture of a woman who strove in every part of her life to glorify God, good days and bad, some with more success than others.
So, this gives me hope on days like this. Now, the baby is finally asleep and my back hurts so I’m going to sit down. We’ll see how that goes.