Thanksgiving Day is a little over a week away so it is only fitting that we continue along with our time looking over the Proverbs 31 woman by learning from her example of being a woman of service. Proverbs 31: 13-20 speaks of the many tasks this woman sets out to accomplish. Not only does she see to the affairs of her own home and cares for her immediate family, but she also extends her hand to the poor. Please join me in reading verses 13-20:
13 She selects wool and flax
and works with eager hands.
14 She is like the merchant ships,
bringing her food from afar.
15 She gets up while it is still night;
she provides food for her family
and portions for her female servants.
16 She considers a field and buys it;
out of her earnings she plants a vineyard.
17 She sets about her work vigorously;
her arms are strong for her tasks.
18 She sees that her trading is profitable,
and her lamp does not go out at night.
19 In her hand she holds the distaff
and grasps the spindle with her fingers.
20 She opens her arms to the poor
and extends her hands to the needy.
Just reading over that scripture makes me short of breath. What about you? As I have mentioned time and time again, do not allow her eagerness to serve make you feel bad or belittle who you are. Once again, remember that this is just an “ideal” bride for a mama’s son and she obtained these characteristics over her lifetime. Although I am not sure that in my lifetime I would have accomplished half of these tasks. What an amazing woman the Lord inspired through scripture for us to glean from as we strive to become the woman of God that Christ desires for us to be.
One thing that I love most about this woman is that she has a heart for service. I can so relate. It brings me great joy to serve others and reach out to the needy. However, if I were to take a glance at my life currently, I am not able to serve as much as I would like to. When I was single and prior to having children, I was able to put many more hours towards serving others and reaching out to the needy, than I am now, having three small children at home. It took me a long time to come to grips with the inability to reach out and serve like I used to. The Lord revealed to me that my hours of service are “for such a time as this,” is spent serving three small children who depend on me to meet their every need. I know that sooner than I want, my children will be older and there will once again be time to spend more hours serving others. In the meantime, my job is to serve my family and along the way teach them about serving others by involving them in acts of service that we as a family can participate in. I love finding ways that my family and I can serve together. We find things to do that would allow us to involve our young children. I have been involving my children in service since they were very young, and now it is so neat to see them desire to reach out and help others. I am now able to serve with that child like faith through the eyes of my children.
As women of God, how can we be examples of noble servants? Can you think of ways you and your family can reach out to a family in need or serve during the holiday season this year? I know times are tough and our lives are so busy, but I guarantee you it will bring you great joy to serve others. Last year my kids wanted to do something to raise money to send to Haiti. They decided to have a lemonade/cookie stand and used the money raised to buy medical supplies to send with our friend as she headed to Haiti on a mission trip. For my son’s birthday every year, we take cookies to the local fire station because he is infatuated with firemen. I love my children’s desire to serve.
Here are a few suggestions for service opportunities this holiday season:
- serve at a local mission or homeless shelter
- make holiday goodies and take them to family, friends, neighbors or your local police station/fire station
- visit a nursing home in your area and spread love and smiles to someone who may not have family to visit them
- Gather Thanksgiving meal items to give to a needy family.
- Adopt a family and purchase Christmas gifts for them. One great way to get involved with this idea is through Operation Christmas Child. For more info: Samaritan’s Purse
I would love to hear all about how you and your family enjoy spending time-serving others. I know there are many ideas that you can add to the list above! Let’s encourage one another through service.