This is the first of a series of posts illustrating a beautiful portrait of humanity; of men and women who without even realizing it, strive to embody qualities Proverbs 31 embraces in all life areas– personally, with their family, professionally, spiritually, and in their love life too. Whether you’re a “Proverbs 31” man or a woman, you stand out from the rest; you’re a red rose among a field of yellow roses. You’re a man or woman of and for all ages, a role model of timeless strength and beauty, virtue and responsibility; a cherished life partner and a powerful entrepreneur too!
Who can find a virtuous woman?
She is worth far more than rubies.
As mentioned in a previous post, there seems to be some misconceptions with the first part of the verse – “Who can find a virtuous woman? –specifically, with what the term, “virtuous” means. In the biblical sense, “virtuous” actually referred to strength, efficiency, and ability. Further, in addition to Proverbs 31, the Old Testament used the term, “virtuous woman” in other places. For example, in Ruth 3:11, “virtuous woman” was a term used to describe Ruth. Everyone took notice of Ruth as her strength of character was viewed not only obvious, but unusual. Keeping this in mind, “virtuous” was also a quality sought in men of the Bible too. For example, in Exodus 18:21, Moses was asked to find “virtuous men” – able men, or men of strength. In this instance, a virtuous man was seen as one who feared God, sought truth, and strived not to sin. Moses looked for such men, with the implication that such men were not easy to find. Comparable expressions were also used in 1 Kings 1:42 (“valiant man” or “man of strength”) and 1 Kings 1:52 (“worthy man” or “man of strength”). Bottom line … with most people seen as morally weak, it was and still is rare to find a virtuous man or woman. As such, when someone of such qualities is placed in your life, their presence is quite evident – to you and to others.
There is also some misconception surrounding the second part of the verse– “She is worth far more than rubies.” The Hebrew term, “rubies” referred to pink pearls or red coral. Found in a mollusk in the Red Sea, a pink pearl was considered rare and of great value. “Rubies” was also found in other parts of the Old Testament. For example, Proverbs 20:15 and Job 28:18 indicated rubies were very valuable and Lamentations 4:7 referred to them as being reddish (“ruddy”) in color. Thus, finding a man or woman of strength was compared to a rare gem – precious and of great value.
What is interesting to note is that for some reason God made most stones bland, if not unattractive, yet, in his infinite wisdom, He made the rarest of stones incredibly beautiful, brilliant, and lustrous so that they do stand out.
How can one find a man or woman of strength? First, have faith in and trust in God’s love; that He will place a man or woman of strength in your life when the time is right. Second, realize that a virtuous woman or man is not going to want just any man or woman. S/he is going to want to find an individual of strength, an individual valiant for the truth, a godly servant who follows the lead and needs of others. So if you seek such a gem, be a gem yourself. Finally… dare to be stand out, dare to be different, and even dare to go against the flow of the world. Most of all… dare to transform yourself, renewing your heart, mind, body, and spirit. Before you know it, you will not only be a man or woman of strength, but you will attract the interest of a man or woman of strength!
Remember … touch a life today “The Little Way” by following the lead and need of others. Also, if you ever thought to yourself, “I wish my community, knew…”, then be sure to visit White Light Communications at http://www.tothewhitelight.com.