A Worthy Model
The World English Dictionary defines “pattern” as a model worthy of imitation. As a young Christian girl, I was told that Proverbs 31 was a pattern to follow to be a virtuous woman. I thought to myself, “Hey, that sounds good! I want to be a virtuous woman!” (Though, as a 13-year old girl, I had no idea what it even meant!) However, I remember reading this chapter for the first time and thinking, “Wow! I am not sure I can do this!”
Years passed, and I grew in my walk with God. I graduated from a Christian school, went to Bible College, and married a preacher. My understanding of God and His Word increased. I developed an intimate relationship with God and loved the Bible that God had preserved for me. Yet, though all of this had occurred in my life, I would still read Proverbs 31 and say, “Wow! I am not sure I can do this!”
You see, as I read Proverbs 31, I “pictured” her in my mind. Do you ever do that? Do you have a mental “picture” of her? To me, she was perfect. She had a soft-spoken voice and was meek and quiet. She never had a hair out of place. Her children were all perfectly behaved, standing at attention, and obeying immediately when addressed. Her husband adored her. And though the Bible said she was “clothed in silk and purple,” for some reason in my mind, she wore ivory and pink, and always had on pearls – necklace, earrings, and bracelet. Her home was immaculate, with everything always in order. How do you picture her in your mind?
I Never Felt That I Came Close To Being Like This Woman
I had this mental picture of this “perfect” woman, and then I would read the verses where she could do EVERYTHING! She seemed to be superwoman! I never felt that I even came close to being like this woman. I did not even come close to following this “pattern” given to us by God. To be perfectly transparent, I must tell you the two reasons that I really did not like this woman: 1) she never slept, and 2) she could sew anything! These really drove me crazy!
I love to sleep. Please understand, I am not lazy, and I do not oversleep, but I tend to be crabby when I do not get enough sleep! I can remember when my kids were toddlers, and one year for my birthday I wanted only one thing….a NAP!
I have tried to sew. I have, on a few occasions, made an article of clothing. However, it does not come easily for me at all. It takes me so long to sew a garment for my children that they outgrow it before I can finish it! Even the simplest of tasks prove that sewing is indeed not my forte’. Last year, my daughter’s button fell off her favorite winter coat. I quickly went about sewing it back on. She was so thankful! Until the next when she tried to put her cold hands in her pocket and discovered that I had sewn through the middle of it, making it impossible to insert her hand!
Something Took Place That Helped Me See This Woman Differently
In 2008, something took place that helped me to see this “virtuous woman” differently. My pastor asked me to teach a class on Proverbs 31 in our Bible College. At first, I wanted to decline, but the Holy Spirit made it clear that this is what He wanted for me. As I began studying this word virtuous, I discovered that my mental picture of this woman was entirely wrong!
As a result I firmly believe that Satan had me blinded to what God wanted me to see. Satan deceived me into thinking that I was too inadequate and could never even come close to being like this woman. And I also learned why he made me think this way…
The word virtuous comes from the word khah’-yil which means “probably a force, whether of men, means, or other resources; an army, wealth, virtue, valor, strength: – able, activity, army, band of men (soldiers), company, (great) forces, goods, host, might, power, riches, strength, strong, substance, train, (+) valiant (-ly), valour, virtuous (-ly), war, worthy (-ily).” (I wish I had read this as a 13-year-old tomboy! I certainly could have related more to this woman!) This definition is taken from the Strong’s Concordance really did not resemble the mental picture I had carried for so many years!
I Now Love This Virtuous Woman
As I studied this chapter, by dissecting and defining each verse, I discovered that this virtuous woman, this pattern that was given to us by God, is ultimately a soldier…fighting the enemy (Satan) on behalf of her family! She begins each day putting on her spiritual armor, preparing to meet the needs of her family, as she serves Christ on a battlefield.
It is my prayer that this book will help you to see this “pattern” as God would have you to see it, and not be held in bondage of Satan’s lies. I now love this woman, and look forward to the 31st of the month! If you read this book, I believe that you will begin to have a new mental picture of the virtuous woman, as I now have. She is now wearing camouflage, complete with war paint – black lines under her eyes – with her weapon (God’s Word) in her hand…but to remain feminine, she is still wearing pearls…
A Worthy Model: God’s Pattern for Woman
The World English Dictionary defines “pattern” as a model worthy of imitation. The Virtuous Woman recorded in Proverbs 31 is often proclaimed to be a pattern for godly women. A Worthy Model is Proverbs 31 dissected and defined! In this book, Wendy Burks goes verse by verse, giving practical and personal applications, declaring that each woman is ultimately a soldier fighting the enemy (Satan) on behalf of her family. Enjoy as part of your personal study time, or use in your ladies’ Sunday School class!