She rises early? Say What?

Proverbs 31:15 (NIV): She gets up while it is still night; she provides food for her family and portions for her female servants.

This seems like a relatively simple verse, but I have wrestled God with this for almost a week now. I know what I want to write, and I know what God wants me to write. Who do you think is going to win?

“She gets up while it is still night;”

I will admit this is not one of my favorite verses. While I am more of a “morning person”, I would prefer the sun to be up before I awake. I honestly dread getting out of bed on a cold winter’s morning in total darkness. That being said, it is much more beneficial for me and my household if I awake before the sun. One reason I like getting up early is I can get some time alone with the Lord uninterrupted. There is something to be said for starting your day off right. If I rise with God in my heart and his words in my brain, my day is much lighter and brighter. Another reason I like rising early is that I can get a jump-start on my “to do” list and get much more accomplished. I get much more done before the noon hour than I do after; therefore, it is prudent for me to get up early.

If I know all these things, then why do I hit the snooze button three or four times before I finally drag myself out of bed? Yes, part of the problem is that I did not go to bed early enough the night before, but more often than not I am just putting off the inevitable by staying in bed. I will admit that I don’t like my job and would prefer to not have to go; however, staying in bed accomplishes little and leaves me with bad hair (too late to fix it) and a bad attitude (I hate being late).
Now, let’s move on to the last portion of this verse, then I will go back and tie everything together (well, at least I hope to-cross your fingers).

Now, let’s move on to the last portion of this verse, then I will go back and tie everything together (well, at least I hope to-cross your fingers).

“She provides food for her family and portions for her female servants.”

The last part of this verse tells us that we are to provide food for our family and servants. Taking verse 15 literally, virtuous women are to wake early and provide food for their household. They are to make sure that their men, children, and help have a good breakfast so that they too can get the best start to their day. Ideally, it would be the first time in the day for the family to come together to share and possibly do a short devotional; however, most schedules do not allow time for this gathering. I can see how this would have been practical in biblical times, but is it still practical for today’s working women? Please keep reading as I promise to answer this question in a few.

While most of us do not have hired help today, I am pleasantly surprised to find that a virtuous woman would not only prepare food for her household but her servants as well. Talk about Christ-like love! My first thought would be to have the help prepare the breakfast for the whole family while I got an extra hour of sleep. Now come on, admit it, you would too. Not only does this speak of a virtuous woman’s kindness, but also her great leadership skills as a great leader does not ask his or her followers to do something that he or she is not willing to do.

If you are not one for strict interpretation, a looser translation would imply that a virtuous woman should rise early to prepare her household for the day. It does not necessarily mean she actually has to prepare the morning meal, she just needs to make sure she get the kids up and ready for school, makes sure they get fed (either prepared by her or something they get themselves), organizes the daily events and calendars, and prepares any household help for the day, etc meal.

Missy’s thoughts:

I know the question that keeps going through a lot of your minds, “Do we really have to make breakfast for our family every day?” I honestly don’t know the answer to that question. I only know what God has told me for my own family and my own walk. As a virtuous woman, wife, and mother, my family is to be my top priority next to him. They are to be my top priority when it comes to time, money, and pleasures. What that looks like in my household may look differently in your household as we all have different family dynamics and circumstances; however, as God is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow, his word still applies to us and we should be doing our very best to carry out his instructions.

I know God is calling me to be a better wife and mother by getting up earlier to not only make breakfast, but to make sure the household runs smoother. I hear the groans from here, but hear me out. If God is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow, I feel like his words meant what they said they meant. A virtuous woman rises early to prepare food for her household. I know it doesn’t make sense in today’s society. It doesn’t make much more sense in my household as I am a working mother, but I honestly feel God calling me to do this. I am not saying he is calling you to do anything. I ask that you spend time with God on this issue and see what he says about it.

Some of you, including myself, may be wondering how we can accomplish such a task. I mean, is it really practical or is it just an ideal? Well, I would say if God is asking us to do it, it is definitely possible. That being said, I don’t think it is practical to make breakfast for my whole family every day and that is where the looser translation comes in. For example, in the summer time the kids do not want to get up early to eat a breakfast I cook when they have the option of sleeping in; therefore, my job as a virtuous woman, would be to make sure that there was food readily available for the kids to prepare themselves. My husband works an odd shift and is not home in the morning. I then should be making sure he has food for his meals at work. When I put it in this context, I can better see the possibilities of success. It may take hard work and preparation, but it is definitely possible. I know my biggest obstacle will be realigning my priorities. I absolutely cannot add one more thing to my schedule, so some things are going to have to go in order for me to do what God is calling me to do. Ladies, let me encourage you to first look at your activities list because we sometimes can overbook our kids and even our own activities. Also, remember just because we are doing something with the church doesn’t mean the activity is something God has called us to or even for God at all. When I said God comes first, I meant your relationship with God. After you have done that, I strongly encourage you to look at your “me time.” Ouch! Yep, I said it. Let’s face it, sometimes we feel like we need some time just to relax and forget the world. Sometimes this time is warranted; sometimes it is not. Do you really need two to three hours of television at night? Do you really need to read those books for hours a day? Do you really need to go to the spa once a month? I think you get my point. I am not saying we do not deserve any “me time,” I just think that many of us take more than we really need (myself included).

The bottom line is that God has a plan and a role for us as women. If we want to be virtuous women, we must not only accept our roles, but act out our roles as well. Just ask Saul what partial obedience gets you. Ladies, our work is not always fun. This life can be hard, demanding, and flat-out tiring. The only hope we have in accomplishing our calling is relying on God. I strongly believe if we do what God is calling us to do, he will give us the strength to carry it out; we will be rested even if we get less sleep; we will be happier even if our circumstances don’t warrant it.

Lord, I come to you today asking you help us all to be better wives, mothers, and women. You know our hearts long to please you Lord, yet our own selfish desires and wants often get in the way. We ask that you remove these obstacles Lord and help us to overcome so that we can be the virtuous women you’ve called us to be. In Jesus’ name I pray, AMEN!

* Disclaimer* *Disclaimer* *Disclaimer* * Disclaimer* *Disclaimer* *Disclaimer*
I would just like to say that this study has taught me a great deal and while I have learned a lot, I have been light on the application side of things. So, dear husband, if you are reading this, I do know that I need to practice what I preach. It is coming..I promise 

Until next time, stay safe and God bless,
Missy

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3 thoughts on “She rises early? Say What?

    1. Thank you so much! It definitely was all God because it is not at all what I wanted to write. The hard part for me in living out what I write. I happy to report that I have gotten up at 5 Am for the last two days and my mornings are running much smoother. Keep the prayers coming and I’ll do the same for you. God Bless!

      1. Dear Missy,

        I know exactly what you mean by wanting to write something that is less personally convicting. But you have done it, and I am proud of you. I am glad to hear that things are running smoother.

        God bless you, too!

        You remain in my prayers.

        Hugs,

        Gwennon

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