Tomorrow, half way through our Lenten Journey, we have the oasis of Mothering Sunday. I read of a seminary student who once preached from Proverbs 31 on Mother’s Day. This passage contains these verses.
An accomplished woman who can find?
Her value is far beyond rubies.
Her husband’s heart trusts in her,
and he lacks nothing valuable.
She brings him good and not harm
all the days of her life.
She selects wool and flax
and her hands work willingly.
She is like merchant ships,
bringing her sustenance from afar.
She rises while it is still night
and provides food for her household
and portions for her servant girls.
She considers a field and buys it.
From the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.
She girds herself with strength
and invigorates her arms.
She discerns that her business is good.
Her lamp never goes out at night.
She extends her hands to the spindle
and her palm grasps the spinning wheel.
She spreads out her palms to the poor,
and extends her hands to the needy.
Much later in life he commented that he could only imagine the burden he must have laid on mothers that day as he described the lofty standard of the Proverbs 31 wife and mother.
This passage is not dictating how godly mothers and wives are supposed to act. Instead, this passage is describing Wisdom by means of a metaphor. This passage portrays how God’s people can practice wisdom in their everyday lives.
One of the qualities of a life of wisdom is industry. Biblical wisdom, applied in everyday life, appears as someone who buys and sells land, designs clothing, and engages in financial transactions. Through hard work and innovation, a wise person turns the raw material of creation into something that benefits others.
God is the original creator, investor, and designer. He is the original entrepreneur who brings raw material into a form that is usable for us.
Today God continues that work through us. He uses real estate workers who develop land into housing; bakers who use ingredients to make tasty, healthful food; educators, builders, manufacturers, programmers, and more who help make our cities and nations run efficiently. God works through us in so many ways. How are we labouring with God to cultivate his creation?
Creator God, help us to use the gifts and resources you give us to benefit others today. In the name of Jesus, the true wisdom of God, we pray. Amen.