Virtuous Woman

My paternal grandmother is the epitome of the virtuous woman depicted in Proverbs 31. When we were little, she used to hand-sew sweaters and scarves for each of her grandchildren; each masterpiece was sewn with such love, down to each little button and the very last detail. She’s a bit older now so she gave up on sewing, but she continues to knead dough from scratch to make man tou and use organic soy beans to make soy milk.

The accumulation of experience and knowledge has made her extremely wise; she can read people with a simple, stolen glance. Even though she is getting older, she never forgets a single birthday. She always stows away a $50 bill in a red envelope and secretly passes it on to us at church when our birthday rolls around.This summer, my grandmother will turn 90 years old. I truly believe that with each passing day she shows more love and concern to her 8 children and their respective spouses, 18 grandchildren, and 5 great-grandchildren.

My grandmother always always always relentlessly puts her children’s needs before her own needs. She makes all these sacrifices and chooses to live a simple and frugal lifestyle, scrimping on herself yet sacrificing the few things she does have or own so others can live a better life. This is true love, and such a rarity in modern-day society. Everyday before I go to bed, I sincerely, anxiously, earnestly pray that God shows mercy on her, grants her a meaningful and fulfilling life, bestows joy and happiness in the form of family and friends upon her, and blesses her with a long and healthy life.

Here are the verses for Proverbs 31, the very verses that effortlessly describes my dear grandmother and all the traits the she so clearly embodies:

10 Who can find a virtuous wife?
For her worth is far above rubies.
11 The heart of her husband safely trusts her;
So he will have no lack of gain.
12 She does him good and not evil
All the days of her life.
13 She seeks wool and flax,
And willingly works with her hands.
14 She is like the merchant ships,
She brings her food from afar.
15 She also rises while it is yet night,
And provides food for her household,
And a portion for her maidservants.
16 She considers a field and buys it;
From her profits she plants a vineyard.
17 She girds herself with strength,
And strengthens her arms.
18 She perceives that her merchandise is good,
And her lamp does not go out by night.
19 She stretches out her hands to the distaff,
And her hand holds the spindle.
20 She extends her hand to the poor,
Yes, she reaches out her hands to the needy.
21 She is not afraid of snow for her household,
For all her household is clothed with scarlet.
22 She makes tapestry for herself;
Her clothing is fine linen and purple.
23 Her husband is known in the gates,
When he sits among the elders of the land.
24 She makes linen garments and sells them,
And supplies sashes for the merchants.
25 Strength and honor are her clothing;
She shall rejoice in time to come.
26 She opens her mouth with wisdom,
And on her tongue is the law of kindness.
27 She watches over the ways of her household,
And does not eat the bread of idleness.
28 Her children rise up and call her blessed;
Her husband also, and he praises her:
29 “Many daughters have done well,
But you excel them all.”
30 Charm is deceitful and beauty is passing,
But a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised.
31 Give her of the fruit of her hands,
And let her own works praise her in the gates.

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Best,
Phoebe

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