Proverbs 31, of all the chapters in Proverbs, is no doubt the most beloved for it articulates a son’s admiration for the woman who gave him life, nurtured, disciplined and directed his feet on the path of righteousness.
The opening verses of this chapter express the Queen Mother’s appeal for her son to remember the vows she made to God while he was in her womb. She called upon the young prince to reflect on her exhortations that he would become a virtuous, God-fearing, self-disciplined king who would avoid those vices that weaken men’s character [women, wine, strong drink – 31:3-5] and pave the way to shame and ruin. Such a woman has earned the right for her sons and daughters to hear her words and, in the words of the king, “arise up and call her blessed” (31:28).
I will step aside from my commentary for a moment and allow the king’s own words describe this daughter, wife and mother of virtue.
Proverbs 31:29-30 – “29 Many daughters have done virtuously [served with strength; courage; excellence], but thou excellest [ascend; go beyond] them all. 30 Favour [charm; grace] is deceitful [lies; unreliable], and beauty is vain [temporal; passing]: but a woman that feareth [reverences] the LORD, she shall be praised.”
One of the great tragedies of our 21st century society is the void of godly, virtuous daughters, wives and mothers. The strength of femininity has served mankind well and the influence of daughters, wives and mothers on society is immeasurable. Like salt seasons and flavors, women have the power to season their homes, communities and society with feminine, preserving grace. Historically, mothers served not only as the womb of life, but also as the moral compass for a family, community and nation. Make no mistake, the influence of organizations like NOW, and the rise to leadership of women who crusade for and encourage the slaughter of the unborn infant in a mother’s womb has dethroned America’s daughters, wives and mothers.
Proverbs 31:31 – “Give [Deliver; yield; recompense; pay; apportion] her of the fruit [reward; results] of her hands [labor; consecration]; and let her own works [labor; deeds; achievements; behavior] praise [boast; glory] her in the gates [gates of the city where the elders sat and exercised judgment].”
A husband, son and daughter of a virtuous wife and mother can never compliment or praise a woman of virtue too much! In his letter to the scattered and persecuted Christians of the 1st century church the apostle Peter challenged husbands: “Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them [wife] according to knowledge [understanding], giving honour [cherish; treat as priceless] unto the wife…” (1 Peter 3:7).
It is my prayer that this brief devotional has inspired daughters, wives and mothers to love the Lord and know, in spite of what this godless society might tell you, your influence is beyond your comprehension. Many have said, “The hand that rocks the cradle rules the world.”
I close with an illustration and am at a lost to cite its origin.
Illust. – A man stopped at the flower shop to order some flowers to be wired to his mother who lived 200 miles away. As he got out of his car he noticed a girl sitting on the curb sobbing. He asked her what was wrong and she replied: “I wanted to buy a red rose for my mother, but I only have 75 cents and a rose costs $2.00.
The man smiled and said, “Come on in with me. I will buy you a rose for your mother.” He placed his FTD order of flowers to his mother and bought a rose for the girl. As they were leaving he offered the girl a ride.
She responded, “Yes, please, if you could. Take me to my mother,” and she directed him to a cemetery where she placed the rose on a freshly dug grave.
The man returned to the flower shop, canceled the wire order, picked up the flowers and drove the 200 miles to his mother’s home.
Wives and mother’s long for their family’s affection and nothing will compare to the praise of her family. By the way, to my wife, daughters and mothers in my life…I love you!