It’s funny as I read today’s passage because I find it very hard to see much of anything beyond the literal interpretation of the text. I’m also not one of those deep thinkers who sees and views things in ways that no one else ever would. I’m quite literal, and whats worse, quite matter of fact. So this passage had me stumped for quite some time. However, after looking over it again and again, I found that the Lord was trying to show me something between the lines, instead of what is directly there.
“21 She fears not the snow for her family, for all her household are doubly clothed in scarlet.22 She makes for herself coverlets, cushions, and rugs of tapestry. Her clothing is of linen, pure and fine, and of purple [such as that of which the clothing of the priests and the hallowed cloths of the temple were made].23 Her husband is known in the [city’s] gates, when he sits among the elders of the land.24 She makes fine linen garments and leads others to buy them; she delivers to the merchants girdles [or sashes that free one up for service].”
So like I said, it just seems like a lot of talk about the nice things she sews and her husband is really popular around town. But indulge me for a second and look in between what the text is saying. We know that this woman, she is a worshipper who has rooted her heart and life into who the Father has named her to be. She is someone who has given her future over to the hands of the one who gave her life, and she trusts in him completely. This alone is something that I don’t find easy..faith. Faith to say that when things don’t seem good, that God has something better. Faith that when something doesn’t go my way or I don’t understand that I know God is in control and so I shouldn’t worry or fear. This kind of faith, it’s active. And this is the kind of faith this woman is displaying in these verses.
In verses 21-22, the author is describing her preparedness for the future by her making of garments. She knows snow may come and her household could be in danger from the cold. She doesn’t panic nor does she sit idly by and wait for the snow to come before she reacts. She prepares. She makes garments to keep her household warm and coverings for her beds and furnishings to keep them protected as well.
Her faith says, “God, I know you may send the cold. You may send a storm of frost and snow. Instead of fearing these things, I will trust in your faithfulness and prepare my home for these things, knowing you will use it to take care of those who dwell with me.”
Have you ever known someone like this? Someone who does things, things that seem crazy and unorthodox only because their faith is so big that we can’t comprehend it? This is who this woman is. Historically, it never really snowed in the area where this author lived. Blistering cold, let alone snow, was quite rare. But yet this woman sees fit to ready and prepare herself for whatever…even the inconceivable out of an act of faith and obedience to her creator. As a result, it has allowed her husband (vs 23) to maintain a respected reputation in the city because he is known not only as a godly man himself, but a godly man with a fearless and faith-filled wife.
I can say in truth, that I do trust God…at about 50-75% given the situation. I know He’s in control; I know He does all things for our good; and I know His plans are better than mine. But unlike this lady, I never really act it out. My faith is played out by my words only, so when storm blows in, I either freeze, or grab ahold of my ship and take over the wheel. My faith is not active, it is fearful and doubt-filled and passive.
Matthew 17:20 says “For truly, I say to you, if you have faith like a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move, and nothing will be impossible for you.”
A mustard seed is technically one of the smallest seeds there is. Jesus is telling the people here that all they need is the most minute piece of genuine faith, and with that, they can move a mountain! How amazing is that? And how crazy to think that I/we may not even possess that much.
I want to be a woman who puts feet to her faith. I want to know God so well and trust him so deeply that I have tempered my heart to rest in Him during the rough times, even if the rough time never ends up coming. I want to prepare my heart for all things God has for me, big or small, all the while knowing He has the control. I want my faith to be so bold, so sturdy that those who are closest to me are respected more for knowing me. Don’t you?
The reassuring thing is that regardless of our lack or overflow of faith, God is still with us and for us. Our ability to be active in our faith does not place a limitation on how much God loves us or blesses us. And yet, if we are women who have their worth and identity in Him, I hope that we would each desire to lay a foundation of faith that can move mountains for His glory. That out of our love for Him and what He has done, we would compel ourselves to respond in active obedience and trust, even at the risk of looking a bit nutty.
Oh Lord, may we seek today to be women who trust in you with all our hearts. And may we seek to display our faith by being active participants with you in our lives and futures, while still allowing you to be in control. We thank you that our faith does not affect your love and grace for us, and we ask that you would enable us to have the kind of faith that does miraculous things in your name. Amen.