I once told my husband I didn't like my middle name because it literally means "bitter". I don't WANT to be bitter. He laughed and said "You're like coffee - bitter but good". Being that I am an avid coffee drinker, I was happy... until he continued with "...and just like coffee, some people will love you, some people will hate you, and some people just aren't going to understand you at all."
He was right.
That's how I feel about that woman from Proverbs 31. She has so much stuff going on that she often comes across as someone we just cannot relate to, so we have to look for the thread of her story more than the details.
Look at these verses...
11 - She improves her husband's life
13 - She works with raw materials and turns them into something more
15 - She provides for her household and makes sure it's being improved by the people who work for her
16 - She improves the land
17 - She improves her physical body
21 - She improves the state of everyone in her household
24 - She makes garments and sells them (improving others' work by supplying business needs and improves her family's financial standing through it)
26 - She offers wisdom to the people around her
And my favorite improvement: Verse 20 - "She extends her hand to the poor. Yes, she reaches out her hands to the needy."
This woman is constantly improving everything all the time. And she doesn't just care about improving her own position in the world! Rather, she cares about improving someone else's world as she also improves her own.
There are many needs in the world, and we don't all have the ability to fix all of it at once, but there is always something we can do to better the life of another person.
What is one thing you can do to better someone else's life today?
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