Proverbs 31, Verses 10-31 - 10 An excellent wife, who can find? For her worth is far above jewels. 11 The heart of her husband trusts in her, And he will have no lack of gain. 12 She does him good and not evil All the days of her life. 13 She looks for wool and flax And works with her hands in delight. 14 She is like merchant ships; She brings her food from afar. 15 She rises also while it is still night And gives food to her household And portions to her maidens. 16 She considers a field and buys it; From her earnings she plants a vineyard. 17 She girds herself with strength And makes her arms strong. 18 She senses that her gain is good; Her lamp does not go out at night. 19 She stretches out her hands to the distaff, And her hands grasp the spindle. 20 She extends her hand to the poor, And she stretches out her hands to the needy. 21 She is not afraid of the snow for her household, For all her household are clothed with scarlet. 22 She makes coverings for herself; Her clothing is fine linen and purple. 23 Her husband is known in the gates, When he sits among the elders of the land. 24 She makes linen garments and sells them, And supplies belts to the tradesmen. 25 Strength and dignity are her clothing, And she smiles at the future. 26 She opens her mouth in wisdom, And the teaching of kindness is on her tongue. 27 She looks well to the ways of her household, And does not eat the bread of idleness. 28 Her children rise up and bless her; Her husband also, and he praises her, saying: 29 “Many daughters have done nobly, But you excel them all.” 30 Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain, But a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised. 31 Give her the product of her hands, And let her works praise her in the gates.
Psalm 91, Verses 14-15 - "Because she loves me," says the Lord, "I will rescue her. I will protect her, for she acknowledges my name. She will call on me and I will answer her. I will be with her in times of trouble."
Galatians 5, Verses 22-23 - The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
I HAVE THE SHAPE OF A REAL WOMAN by Michelle Murphy
Real women are diverse in nature. They come in all shapes and stripes, and define beauty inside-and-out.
BE A WOMAN OF DEPTH by Michelle Murphy
I love everything about this Proverbs 31 woman. She is independent. She is strong and courageous. She is charitable, beautiful, wise, and educated. She does good and not evil. She is a woman of faith. She is trustworthy and admired. She is a giver and someone who keeps her word; she strives towards the good. She is a mother and a wife, and the Proverbs 31 woman is kind. Let's be like her - for she is prolific! A prolific life, or a life bearing fruit, often originates from an epiphany or deep realization felt emotionally and intellectually in our lives. It continues and becomes reality because of commitment, expectation & encouragement, and continued inspiration. The Proverbs 31 woman bears fruits by her work, by her actions, and through her commitments. How she arrived here would have to include deep realizations, expectations from within and from others, inspiration, and encouragement or reinforcement. Her sons call her a blessing, and her husband has her in his heart, others admire her - so she has expectation and encouragement/reinforcement from those closest to her.
I believe we ALL ought to strive towards living a prolific life, a life bearing fruit - this article/devotional is specific to prolific women. The points noted in "Be A Woman of Depth" are all about not being shallow as women. I believe it's important to mention because women are often tricked into being shallow. Trickery is often authored by Satan (the adversary) for a reason. Without depth how does one become affected by deep realizations, or moved by spiritual truths? If we are shallow, do we end up with a hardened heart? Do we become debased? Preferring beauty over cruelty in nature is about perspective. Perspective is important to being a woman of depth. Also, remembering where we came from is tied to where we are going, and without remembrance one tends to toss and turn about like a tumbleweed. Leading a purposeful life and seeking God's will go hand-in-hand. We should all strive to be "real women" - whether we are black, white, hispanic or oriental. Every woman's challenge is to use both the heart and mind together. We shouldn't be driven by pure emotion & heart, or purely by our intellect. It is the heart intelligence component which is often missing influence in our complex patriarchal world, and so it is even more important that prolific women contribute in peace-making and decision-making endeavors. And a prolific woman would have developed strong heart intelligence and strong mind intelligence to do so.
Galatians 5 lists nine fruits of the Spirit, which indwells within us as Christians - love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Do you feel these 9 action-words are a big part of your life? I selected a few I struggle with to pray for below. Psalm 91 is also an inspiring verse, which above is translated from "he" to "her". It says how women who acknowledge His name are rewarded with protection and refuge in times of trouble. Another blessing from God - a blessing for those striving towards being a prolific fruit-bearing real woman.
Dear God, Thank You for love, joy and peace. I am even more thankful for Your protection and refuge in my life, and take comfort in knowing Your love for me. I feel grateful to be alive even though my journey through life in general has been difficult. I feel as if my epiphanies and deep realizations come from Above, as I can see the very purpose of these experiences to be good outcomes and an answer to my prayers. Praise You all the more! I ask that You continue to work on my heart and mind. I ask that You encourage the indwelling of the Spirit, so that I may have more patience, faithfulness, self-control, and other Galatians 5 fruits of the Spirit. I pray I will always strive towards being a Proverbs 31 woman, so as to maximize the blessings I pass along to others. I am working towards being a prolific fruit-bearing real woman. I am thankful for high expectations and encouragement towards me by those closest to me throughout my life. High expectations also come from You Lord. May You continue to bless me, and keep me as Your own daughter. It is an honor to be a daughter of yours; it is an honor to be a sister, girlfriend, female colleague, aunt, niece, wife, and to also be my mom's daughter. Glory be to God! Amen.
Michelle is a woman of depth whose faith has pulled her through some difficult times. She finds beauty and inspiration from life experience and literature, sourced from all ages and walks of life. Michelle seeks to inspire other women in their personal journeys, especially those who struggle. Michelle is also a mental health advocate, writer & engineer. Her other website is www.freemindbooks.com.