Today’s message summary of May 14, 2017 from Elaine Brown:
Women are beautiful, unique and loving. They have a very important role within the family, and God has appointed them to a role within it.
The design of the family is a male (man), female (woman–helper), and sons and daughters, who are brought up and mentored by their parents.
The man is the head administrator (CEO) of the family, while the woman is the COO of the household.
In contrast, society today has redefined family to different definitions that include a single mother or father, or even two fathers, two mothers, or a blended family. When did this all start to happen? It was a generational shift that began in the days of Woodstock. The mantra of the day was “do your own thing.” The misuse of alcohol and drugs, and protests became more prevalent. Each of these things was a part of what became a moral decline as a society, and a gradual breakdown of today’s family.
Here is a startling statistic: 1,415,955 children were born out of wedlock in 2003. It is hard to know if there are men involved with these children or not, but it is hard to ignore the generational impact of what happened a short time ago. In today’s census (2016), there are 10 million single mothers that are heading their families. Daycare is now much more prevalent because of the need for mothers to work to earn a living, but the children, who are outside of the home for up to eleven hours a day, are faced with less time within a family unit.
The breakdown of the family has a profound effect on the emotional well-being of the parent and the child. The need for a strong figure in the family, a mother, is extremely important, and God speaks of this woman in Proverbs 31:10-31:
Proverbs 31:10-31 NLT
Who can find a virtuous and capable wife?
She is more precious than rubies.
Her husband can trust her,
and she will greatly enrich his life.
She brings him good, not harm,
all the days of her life.
She finds wool and flax
and busily spins it.
She is like a merchant’s ship,
bringing her food from afar.
She gets up before dawn to prepare breakfast for her household
and plan the day’s work for her servant girls.
She goes to inspect a field and buys it;
with her earnings she plants a vineyard.
She is energetic and strong,
a hard worker.
She makes sure her dealings are profitable;
her lamp burns late into the night.
Her hands are busy spinning thread,
her fingers twisting fiber.
She extends a helping hand to the poor
and opens her arms to the needy.
She has no fear of winter for her household,
for everyone has warm clothes.
She makes her own bedspreads.
She dresses in fine linen and purple gowns.
Her husband is well known at the city gates,
where he sits with the other civic leaders.
She makes belted linen garments
and sashes to sell to the merchants.
She is clothed with strength and dignity,
and she laughs without fear of the future.
When she speaks, her words are wise,
and she gives instructions with kindness.
She carefully watches everything in her household
and suffers nothing from laziness.
Her children stand and bless her.
Her husband praises her:
“There are many virtuous and capable women in the world,
but you surpass them all!”
Charm is deceptive, and beauty does not last;
but a woman who fears the Lord will be greatly praised.
Reward her for all she has done.
Let her deeds publicly declare her praise.
This woman is one who fears (has reverence of) the Lord. You may not have any children, but women are natural nurturers. A woman with strong character is well-respected, and has the desire to please God.
The appearance of the woman is not mentioned. It is much less important than her outlook on life and how she remains obedient to God. You are a virtuous woman as you seek to please God. God provides you with the strength and wisdom to accomplish many things.
Fearing God is having a heart to really know Him. It’s more than just your feelings–it really is about learning more about Him and making Him the priority in your life. It is about asking Him where He wants you to be, and leaning upon Him for strength, wisdom and encouragement.
If you are seeking God with all of your heart, you are a virtuous woman. In order to break these generational issues, there has to be a teaching of the youth as to how to live in this manner:
“This is the command—the statutes and ordinances—the Lord your God has instructed me to teach you, so that you may follow them in the land you are about to enter and possess. Do this so that you may fear the Lord your God all the days of your life by keeping all His statutes and commands I am giving you, your son, and your grandson, and so that you may have a long life. Listen, Israel, and be careful to follow them, so that you may prosper and multiply greatly, because Yahweh, the God of your fathers, has promised you a land flowing with milk and honey.
“Listen, Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is One. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. These words that I am giving you today are to be in your heart. Repeat them to your children. Talk about them when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Bind them as a sign on your hand and let them be a symbol on your forehead. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.
“When the Lord your God brings you into the land He swore to your fathers Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob that He would give you—a land with large and beautiful cities that you did not build, houses full of every good thing that you did not fill them with, wells dug that you did not dig, and vineyards and olive groves that you did not plant—and when you eat and are satisfied.
Needless to say, if there is no teaching, there is a lack of knowledge that is being passed on. God provides the wisdom and knowledge to you in order to be successful, and that information needs to be passed on to the children.
The key to this teaching is a constant exposure to God’s Word–day and night–with prayer, family devotion time, and reflection upon what He is saying to you.
Mothers also teach their children by their words and their actions. Children look to mothers for guidance and will follow it.
Even within a single-parent household, God can bring along others who will help within the relational development of the children and the family.
The virtuous woman referenced in Proverbs 31 had a number of duties (!). She accomplished a great deal and worked inside and outside the household. She had to be a very good planner, well organized, and be very diligent in running her household. Her family was a priority of the day, and the additional things that she had to accomplish were done after hours, and she used good judgment. These are godly character traits of a virtuous women.
I am able to do all things through Him who strengthens me.
A woman who fears the Lord is worthy of praise.
If you fix your heart to please the Lord, you are a virtuous woman.