The Proverbial Woman: Woman of Prayer

31:15  She rises while it is yet still night and provides food for her household and portions for her maidens.

The letter Vav (vahv) represents this verse.  The pictograph for this letter looks like a tent peg or the hooks used to  fasten the curtains of the tabernacle.  It  means to 'be fixed', in the sense of not being moved, of holding something together.

The first word in the Hebrew verse is 'vatakom' but it was not in the lexicon.  The word used in the lexicon was quwn  which means to rise, stand up, to establish, continue.  I had to research how vatakom  was used in other verses to gather a full understanding of what it means. 

Genesis 24:61: Rebecca arose and her maids and they rode upon camels and followed the man.
In this instance, Rebeccas is arising with a certain purpose.  She has made the choice to leave her family home, to leave immediately, rather than delay her marriage to Isaac.  She is leaving her family and her home forever.  She is leaving all she has ever known to travel into an unknown country, to unknown people where she will live the rest of her days.  I can't imagine this was an easy choice but it certainly took a lot of faith to make it!

I Samuel 1:9:  ...Hannah stood up.  Hannah was the much loved, but barren wife of Elkanah.  Elkanah had another wife, who had children.  Hannah longed for a child of her own.  Each year, when they went up to make offerings, Elkanah would go to make his sacrifice and he would give a portion of meat to Peninah and a double portion to Hannah.  Peninah would taunt Hannah over her childless state and Hannah would become so distressed that she'd cry and be unable to eat.  In this verse, Hannah has had enough.  'Hannah stood up.'  Perhaps a little angry and fed up.  Perhaps determined to change her fate.  She goes to synagogue and kneels to pray to God, asking him for the son she so longs to have...She rose up with a determination to change something if only her own attitude about the acceptance of her circumstance.

And so this is the emotional value of the word vatakom.  It seems to mean a bit more than 'she arises' doesn't it? There is in this word a value of rising up to face the future in a new way, with a sense of determination to change and be changed.

She rises while it is still night...for years I've accepted that this verse was just further proof of the industry of this remarkable woman.  But I was curious...why is it so important that she is awake and up obviously before her household? 

Mark 1:35  Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up and went away to a lonely spot and stayed there praying.  Is our Proverbial Woman getting up extra early to have that necessary time alone to spend with God in prayer? 
She rises while it is still night and provides food for her household and portions for her  handmaidens.  In another translation, the word 'food' is replaced with 'meat'.  In the lexicon the Hebrew word for meat is 'prey'.  I thought this odd, but perhaps what she was providing for her family was more than meat.  It was something she'd had to seek to find and work for... Most assuredly she was up early, and she did provide food for her household of the physical kind and kindly set out a portion for her maids as well.  Considering the verse in a spiritual light and having determined that it might well be her time to pray, she most surely prayed over her household including her handmaidens, as well. And in the prayer life, she surely was seeking something, pressing in to get hold of something which she wished to give to her entire household: a life that God would consider a right and good one.  A personal relationship with Adonai.   In

Deuteronomy 8:3 He humbled you, allowing you to become hungry, and then he fed you with 'man'(manna), which neither you nor your ancestors had ever known, to make you understand that a person does not live on food alone but on every thing that comes from the mouth of Adonai.

I believe our Proverbial Woman had a sound knowledge of Torah and this time of prayer was her way of providing for her household spiritually. 


Sew Blessed Maw [Judy] said...

Thank you for this blog post. .Have been enjoying them.

Lana said...

Three of our five ALdi stores are closed for renovation. So take all those people and cram them into two stores and realize that there is no way that they can stock enough for the hoards of shoppers. The only way to shop Aldi until those three other stores open back up is to get there when the doors open or you cannot even find a place to park. We did that this morning and actually got all but two items on the list. By the time we came out at 9:25 the parking lot was full and you could see the desperation on people's faces. We literally had to get up early and drive to one far away from where we normally shop so this verse seems very appropriate right now.

Loving the Hebrew letters.

Anonymous said...

I am enjoying your breakdown on the role of a woman. When you read it as one reading it sounds like a tough assignment but broken down in segments is an excellent way of explaining it. Gramma D

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