Wednesday, March 26, 2014

A Woman Who Fears the Lord: The Giver

The Giver.  You know it's that book you read in the 4th grade, or the 5th grade or maybe even the 8th grade.  I wouldn't know because I never read it.  I don't know the reading level and managed to clear skirt around it in those days of old.  But believe you me, the days of old were filled with many other titles.  But today's post is not about the book.. it's about a woman.  Thank you for reading (for the 50 millionth time).  Grace to you.  And now about this woman...

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit.  But in 
humility consider others better than yourself.  Each of you should
not look to your own interests but also to the interests of others.
Philippians 2: 3-4

I've always admired a mother.  My mama.  My mema. My grandmama.  Mrs. Bush.  These are the women I have been around countless times as they serve and present a big meal to the family.  Every one streams through the line and gets what we like to call their "helping", sometimes more than they should, but they get what their eyes want.. nonetheless.  After everyone has filed through, the mothers go and get the scrapings.  If there's no macaroni and cheese left, she will miss out.  If there is only a piece of dark meat left of the fried chicken, that's what she will eat.  If the best pie is finished off, she will take the piece of cake.  No complaints.  I know what you're thinking: "Man! Those are some awesome family meals."  They sure are! Count on it.  But more importantly than the fried chicken is that these mothers/women are givers.  The giver.

You don't have to be a wife or mother to be a giver.  It's not limited to these specific roles.  Not one bit.  Rather, being a giver comes from a heart that seeks to mirror Christ- and not necessarily a place or role in life.  If you continued reading in Philippians beyond the verses mentioned above, you would continue reading about Christ's humility.   He did not consider equality with God something to grasp.  He took on the very nature of a servant.  He humbled himself.  He became obedient to death, even death on a cross.  The giver.

Proverbs 31 shows a woman who is nothing less than a giver of the highest quality.  I truly believe a woman becomes a giver when her whole heart is not focused on her own needs and wants- but is looking to the needs of others.  There are so many roles that come forth in these few verses of Proverbs 31 and so many hats to wear.  It can seem overwhelming. exhausting. a headache, even.  (Side note: If serving the family or others is exhausting, then something is wrong.  Bad wrong.)  But the point is not to focus on the "roles" or "hats" we must have.  The point is that this woman is not thinking about herself and is serving those around her.  Her love for her husband, family and others is the motivation for her life.  She is serving the Lord with her whole heart.  She is putting them before herself.  She is giving herself up for them, just as Christ gave Himself up for us.  In short, she is a giver because she is imitating Christ.  

She takes care of her husband.  He lacks nothing of value.
She is continuously working with eager hands to prepare linens, clothing and food for her family. 
She provides food for her family. 
She provides food for her servants.
She sets about her work vigorously.
She considers a field and buys it.
She opens her arms to the poor.
She extends her hands to the needy.
She watches over the affairs of the household.
She does not eat the bread of idleness.
She is honored for the work of her hands.
She is praised for her works.
The giver.

Mrs. Bush.  My mema.  My grandmama. And my mama. They're all women who have cooked far too many meals, made far too many last minute Halloween costumes, gone to numerous ball games or picked up a sick child from school.  They've ironed shirts, hemmed pants and tied ties.  They've put others before themselves and set an example for me to follow.  Their works shall be praised because they are- givers.

May I follow after them as they [have] followed Him... 

1 comment:

  1. Love this and thank you for sharing. Keep writing....God is using you and writings last's a beautiful thing.