Friday, August 8, 2014

Again, for the First Time

Dear Girls,

I adore a new notebook.  (That's where you get it, Jyll!)  The possibilities are endless.  Somehow the clean, crisp pages represent new beginnings, a fresh start.  That's exactly what I needed back in May of 2012.

I'd purchased the notebook to use as a journal, though I'm not sure I knew then how sweet it would be to be able to look back and read the beginning of our love story...mine and God's.  I remember being unsure of what I should write first.  (Again, the possibilities are endless...that's torture for my personality type!)  I'm pretty sure I owned the thing for at least three solid weeks before deciding what to write first.

Then I sat in church on Mother's Day and listened to our pastor explain what it meant to be a Proverbs 31 woman.  And I knew that was it.  I remember hearing those beautiful words for the first time and knowing that that was exactly the type of woman I wanted to be.  It was the perfect place to start.

Sometimes I think we can beat a thing to death.  We can analyze it and blog it and spin it and insert it just so into the places where we need it, when we need it, exactly how we need it.  There's nothing wrong with interpretation.  It facilitates understanding and application.

Yet there's something so beautiful about viewing a thing in its raw form.  Or through the lens of first-time discovery.  Which is why, this morning as I cracked open the pages where I scribbled the newborn baby steps of my spiritual journey, the beautiful words nearly took my breath away.

I know I am not the woman I was back then.  And perhaps it's the look back at the bittersweet, up-and-down landscape of my journey toward becoming the woman God meant me to be that brings the flood of emotion.  It's been tough.  It's been wonderful.

But the time has come to start a new journal; another new beginning.  And I am so glad to be able to go back and remember those first moments.  My child-like faith; when I hung on every single thing I read in His word and every single one had the power to just totally slay me.

I felt that again this morning.  And not that it's been long since I felt that, but...this passage.  I remember.  I remember resolving to become this woman what seems like a lifetime ago.  I had written it down eagerly and promised myself that I'd read it every day to remember who I was made to be.  I've messed it up at times, but I've also nailed it.   And the journey continues. 

In case you find yourself in need of a reminder today as well, I invite you to read with me Proverbs 31:10-31, right where you are.  Let it encourage you and challenge you and convict you, just like the first time.



The Wife of Noble Character

A wife of noble character who can find?
She is worth far more than rubies.
Her husband has full confidence in her, 
and lacks nothing of value.
She brings him good, not harm,
all the days of her life.
She selects wool and flax
and works with eager hands.
She is like the merchant ships,
bringing her food from afar.
She gets up while it is still dark;
she provides food for her family
and portions for her servant girls.
She considers a field and buys it;
out of her earnings she plants a vineyard.
She sets about her work vigorously;
her arms are strong for her tasks.
She sees that her trading is profitable,
and her lamp does not go out at night.
In her hand she holds the distaff
and grasps the spindle with her fingers.
She opens her arms to the poor
and extends her hands to the needy.
When it snows, she has no fear for her household;
for all of them are clothed in scarlet.
She makes coverings for her bed;
she is clothed in fine linen and purple.
Her husband is respected at the city gate,
where he takes his seat among the elders of the land.
She makes linen garments and sells them,
and supplies the merchants with sashes.
She is clothed with strength and dignity;
she can laugh at the days to come.
She speaks with wisdom,
and faithful instruction is on her tongue.
She watches over the affairs of her household
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
Her children arise and call her blessed;
her husband, also, and he praises her:
"Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all."
Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;
but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
Give her the reward she has earned,
and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.

Proverbs 31:10-31, NIV      

What about you have a verse that makes you want to be a better woman? I challenge you to revisit it today and see it with fresh eyes--just like the first time.

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