Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Expert (09/05/13)
TITLE: Virtue That Exceeds Pearls
By Nancy Bucca
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Let's start with item one: Wool-and-flax Hunter. Translation: shops for clothes on a shoestring budget. (Clips coupons while arresting sibling fights, I might add. Can you relate?).
Item two: Shipper of Exotic Foods Fetched From Distant Lands. Translation: drives five or more unending miles to the health food store while under the influence of three whiny kids. Retrieves unusually ripe, multiplied "loaves and fishes" without incident (a major miracle; see Matthew 14:13-20)
Item three: All night Emergency Chef. Translation: provides food at all hours: a bottle for the newborn, glass of water for the spouse, milk and cookies for the little "maids" whom the baby woke up. Exhausted but wide awake, she feasts on a cup of Psalm 127:1-3, which not only promises sleep for the "beloved" but reminds her that children are the Lord's reward (Thanks, God, I needed that).
Item four: Realtor/Gardener. Translation: buys the treasure-laden field of which Jesus spoke (see Matthew 13:44) and plants a "Fruit of the Spirit" vineyard there (see Galatians 5:22-23), by digging deeply into the gospel of John, chapter 15, which she commits to memory.
Item five: Weight trainer. Translation: Believes God's promise for renewed strength (Isaiah 40:31) as she waits for and breathes in the mighty rushing wind according to Acts 4:1-8), throws off unequal yokes and devils (see Matthew 11:28-30 and James 4:7-8), and forgives offenses, up to 70x7 reps per day (see Matthew 18:21-22).
Item six: Perpetual Positive-Outlook Lighthouse. Translation: shines her light constantly by pondering and proclaiming whatever's good, pure, and true (see Philippians 4:8), such as Jesus' awesome power to overcome sin (see Micah 7:19, Isaiah 45:23, Romans 10:9 & 14:11) and save our souls (see John 3:16), without which she would have "lost it" long ago.
Item seven: Master Weaver. Translation: spins straw into gold (just kidding). But she does know how to take what she's given and make the most of it, like the widow who made cakes for Elijah (see I Kings 17:8-16).
Item eight: One-woman Charity Mobile. Translation: donates carefully clipped coupons she forgot to use to a homeless man with hungry eyes. Throws in a bag of marshmallows she didn't mean to buy. Reminds herself God loves a cheerful giver (II Corinthians 9:6-7)
Item nine: Embroiderer of Scarlet. Translation: Covers her family in the blood of Christ, through catch-as-catch-can moments of prayer and intercession, according to James 5:16 and Revelation 12:11.
Items ten, eleven and twelve: Master seamstress. Translation: She mends all sorts of things, beginning with herself, by handing her thoughts over to Christ (II Corinthians 10:5), and submitting to her husband, according to Ephesians 5:33 and I Peter 3:5. Through kind words and deeds she makes him look good, even when he kills romance with sarcasm or stresses her with the proverbial filthy sock. She kisses hurts, bandages booboos, rebukes fevers, and pours the medicine of Isaiah 53 on every disease. She attacks plagues and night terrors with Psalm 91, and outfits others with belts of truth mentioned in Ephesians 6:14.
Oh, and did I happen to mention that this vigorous counselor/household manager/inner beautician has made her share of mistakes? Some pretty embarrassing ones, in fact. Good thing she's saved by grace, through faith in Christ and not her own works (see Ephesians 2:8-10). He's blotted out her sin (see Colossians 2:14), granted her a new identity in Him (see Romans 8:15), and thoroughly trained her in righteousness (see II Timothy 3:16) - so much so, that after years of practice, her spouse and husband have finally taken note of her great wisdom. This is what they say:
"No matter the problem, she has the solution. Are you lost? She's got the road map memorized. She knows the scriptures like the back of her hand and wields them like a pro. Whatever verse you need, she'll tell you where to find it. Has your name been written in the Lamb's book of life (Revelation 13:8)? If not, she'll show you how to place it there."
Note: All scripture references are either quoted or inspired by the King James Version
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