And so we start our series!!
It’s no surprise that a godly woman is hard to find.
In our time and day, women are bombarded with pop culture, where issues such as priority of the physical and immediate fulfillment take the frontlines of the hearts and minds of young men and women everywhere.
We are called to obsess about our weight and looks, and we look up at celebrities as role models.
We are called to live like others want, and do what “everybody else is doing”.
Topics such as values and virtues are shooed off, and are replaced instead with superficial, shallow and empty issues.
As pop culture proclaims “uniqueness”, it really creates carbon copies of its model. The definition of a man and a woman is then distorted and blended into the next trend.
But God is good. He gives us direction in the midst of chaos, offering pictures of what it means to be true godly women and men.
To start off the series, we will be studying verse 10 of Proverbs 31:
10 A wife of noble character, who can find?
She is worth far more than rubies.
In this first verse of the epilogue, this godly woman is described as one with a “noble character”, and in other versions, she is called “virtuous”.
What is virtue?
The term “virtue” in Greek often refers to “moral excellence” and “goodness.”
According to christian author Greg Herrick, a virtue can be divided in the following:
- A tendency, stemming from who you are at your core level, to act in certain ways.
- Not simply an impulse, good or bad, but rather a settled habit of mind.
- Has a function of providing judgment on motives and outward actions.
Virtues, then, relate to who we are as people; our character.
Being a virtuous woman is not a matter of being “born that way”, but it something that can be built up. Nevertheless, it does not comprise actions alone, but comes from who you are and what your true convictions are. Virtue starts in the heart and gives forth fruit of action.
According to these verses, a virtuous woman is hard to find, and “worth more than many rubies”.
If being a woman of noble character was easy, this would not be true. We are called to be different and stand out from the crowd. True value and beauty comes from this character.
The answer is yes. In the Bible, we can see that Ruth is called a virtuous woman, one of noble character.
“And now, my daughter, don’t be afraid. I will do for you all you ask. All the people of my town know that you are a woman of noble character.” Ruth 3:11
Did you read that right? All the people of the town knew Ruth’s character. Talk about standing out!
Some characteristics we can see from Ruth’s story:
- She was devoted (Ruth 1:18), generous (Ruth 2:18) and sacrificial (Ruth 2:11).
- She was faithful (Ruth 1:16)
- She was hardworking (Ruth 2:17)
- She had a good reputation (Ruth 3:11)
These are just some of the qualities that made Ruth a virtuous woman!
Ruth’s example can serve as an encouragement to us that becoming a godly, virtuous woman IS possible even in such a corrupt world. Like David shows us that it is possible to be a “man after God’s heart”, Ruth teaches us that becoming a woman of noble character is attainable through His grace.
“But what if I’m NOT that virtuous woman? What if I don’t have all of Ruth’s characteristics?”
The purpose of this series is so that we can be able to identify and examine ourselves when looking at qualities of the woman God intended us to be. We have to foremost understand that we are not perfect, so we might fail in some – if not a bunch – of the qualities that we will be learning. Nevertheless, brighten up! While we make the decision to follow Christ, let go of our worldly desires and seek Him, He WILL transforms us and shape us into godly women. In the end, it’s not about actions or a list of to-do’s, but a transformation that happens from the inside out. All the glory goes to Him, who is able.
As we continue to study Proverbs 31, we will give an in-depth view on these characteristics, and figure out practical ways to become the “Ruths” of our generation 🙂
What elements of my character are pleasing – or not – to God?
In what way can I be devoted, sacrificial and generous today – like Ruth – in my service to others?
What areas in my life are keeping me from developing a noble character?