I love the definition of words. Words have more power when you know their meaning.
Pursue means to continue along a path or route.
Virtue means showing high moral standards, a quality considered morally good or desirable in a person, and lastly it means strength.
One of my mom’s favorite passage of scripture is Proverbs 31.
If you read the Proverbs 31 it not only has instructions for women, but also for men.
It was King Lemuel’s mother giving her son instructions like most mothers do.
The Message version of Proverbs 31 says it clearly for us to understand and apply to our everyday life.
The first instructions are for the men.
Proverbs 31:1-9 Message Version
The words of King Lemuel,
the strong advice his mother gave him:
2-3 “Oh, son of mine, what can you be thinking of!
Child whom I bore! The son I dedicated to God!
Do not dissipate your virility on fortune-hunting women,
promiscuous women who shipwreck leaders.
4-7 “Leaders can’t afford to make fools of themselves,
gulping wine and swilling beer,
Lest, hung over, they don’t know right from wrong,
and the people who depend on them are hurt.
Use wine and beer only as sedatives,
to kill the pain and dull the ache
Of the terminally ill,
for whom life is a living death.
8-9 “Speak up for the people who have no voice,
for the rights of all the down-and-outers.
Speak out for justice!
Stand up for the poor and destitute!”
We have seen throughout time where leaders were ruined by women because they yielded to lust and did not consider virtue, which means for men, strength and morals.
It takes a lot of strength to discipline yourself. We cannot do it in our own strength. We must do it in God’s strength. Romans 7:18 NIV version says For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out.
Men and women have the desire to do good, but we all can yield to our sinful nature. It is only through Jesus we have the strength to do what is of virtue.
Psalm 119:165 says great peace have those who love your law (the word of God) and nothing can make them stumble.
Psalm 119:11 says Your word have I hidden in my heart that I might not sin against you.
When we have a love for God’s word it will be hidden in our hearts and it causes us to choose virtue. When our sinful nature wants to do wrong, the Word of God will rise in us.
Even if we fall because the word is in us, it causes us to get back up and rise again.
Proverbs 24:16 says though the righteous falls seven times they rise again.
We are made righteous by believing and trusting the word of God.
Women are very influential and persuasive. Women let us use our influence to build, not to tear down.
Proverbs 31:10-31 Message Version
Hymn to a Good Wife
10-31 A good woman is hard to find,
and worth far more than diamonds.
Her husband trusts her without reserve,
and never has reason to regret it.
Never spiteful, she treats him generously
all her life long.
She shops around for the best yarns and cottons,
and enjoys knitting and sewing.
She’s like a trading ship that sails to faraway places
and brings back exotic surprises.
She’s up before dawn, preparing breakfast
for her family and organizing her day.
She looks over a field and buys it,
then, with money she’s put aside, plants a garden.
First thing in the morning, she dresses for work,
rolls up her sleeves, eager to get started.
She senses the worth of her work,
is in no hurry to call it quits for the day.
She’s skilled in the crafts of home and hearth,
diligent in homemaking.
She’s quick to assist anyone in need,
reaches out to help the poor.
She doesn’t worry about her family when it snows;
their winter clothes are all mended and ready to wear.
She makes her own clothing,
and dresses in colorful linens and silks.
Her husband is greatly respected
when he deliberates with the city fathers.
She designs gowns and sells them,
brings the sweaters she knits to the dress shops.
Her clothes are well-made and elegant,
and she always faces tomorrow with a smile.
When she speaks she has something worthwhile to say,
and she always says it kindly.
She keeps an eye on everyone in her household,
and keeps them all busy and productive.
Her children respect and bless her;
her husband joins in with words of praise:
“Many women have done wonderful things,
but you’ve outclassed them all!”
Charm can mislead and beauty soon fades.
The woman to be admired and praised
is the woman who lives in the Fear-of-God.
Give her everything she deserves!
Festoon her life with praises!
Developing a love for God’s word leads us into virtue. We will be admired for our wisdom, love/reverence for God, not for our looks/charm, and it will lead us higher as men and women.
Prayer: Lord I thank you for your spirit living on the inside of me. God, I repent for pursuing outward things that is only temporary. I pursue the character of Jesus that has virtue that is lasting. God, I let my light shine so people can see your good works and glorify my Father in heaven. I thank you for your power operating through me. In Jesus name, Amen.”