Wednesday, June 18, 2008

A Question of the Heart

Of all the verses regarding the Proverbs 31 woman, the one that has always challenged and convicted me the most is verse thirteen.

She looks for wool and flax and works with her hands in delight.” Proverbs 31:13

This verse shows that she was active in her work by using the words “looks” and “works”. But the word that really is convicting to me is the last one, the word delight. She was not just doing the labor, but had a God-honoring attitude to go along with it. So what does the word delight mean?

Delight: A high degree of pleasure or enjoyment; joy; rapture. Something that gives great pleasure.*
A high degree of pleasure, or satisfaction of mind; joy. To be greatly pleased or rejoiced.**

Delight is more permanent pleasure than joy, and not dependent on sudden excitement.**

By looking at these definitions, we can see that working with her hands gave her great pleasure, it pleased her, it gave her joy and satisfaction of mind. Why? Because she had the opportunity and the capability of serving others, of blessing them; she knew that it was pleasing to the Lord for her to delight in her activities. And because she knew that in each task of the day, she was not only serving her family, she was also serving the Lord.

Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance. It is the Lord Christ whom you serve.” Colossians 3:23-24 (emphasis added)

It is often difficult to keep this in mind while doing the mundane tasks of every day life. Certainly, we may take care of the dishes, do the laundry, dust the furniture, but scripturally, we are to do much more than that. We should view each act of service, each mess to be cleaned, each dish to wash, each piece of clothing to be ironed, as a way to serve our Lord and those around us.

While we may think that we are simply doing these things to serve our families, Scripture tells us that it is our Lord Jesus Christ whom we are serving! He is watching us, and He sees how we respond in different circumstances. 

He knows what the condition of our heart is as we respond to a request by our parents, or as we clean up one of the ever-occurring spills on the floor. He sees not only our outward actions, but He can see just as clearly what we are thinking and what we are feeling. (“for the Lord searches all hearts, and understands every intent of the thoughts.” 1 Chronicles 28:9)

An attitude of delight is not an easy thing to have. It takes concerted effort and dedication on our part. To do it, we must put aside our own wants and desires, and instead seek to please our Lord, and the ones that He has placed around us. We are to have an attitude of delight and gratefulness that God has given us the abilities to serve our families and our Lord.

I delight to do Your will, O my God; Your Law is within my heart.” Psalm 40:8

* Random House
** Websters

-Posted by Leah


  1. Thank you so much for this beautiful message. I printed it out and have read over it three times already today. There are times (too many times) when I find it difficult to delight in an unpleasant task. But it helps tremendously when I purpose to accomplish this task as if it was for the Lord. It is so much easier to labor at even the most unpleasant duty if I picture myself laboring at the feet of my Beloved! Just as you so eloquently stated, it DOES take a concerted effort and dedication. How my sinful nature writhes against attempts at selflessness! But then, what should we fear? We have such a gentle, victorious Savior!

    "Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus" (Phil. 3:13,14).

  2. Hello there, I think you've visited me before only on my VirtuousMaidens blog. I never did take the time to reply to your comment and I do apologize. I actually found your blog from Beautiful-Grace and recognized it.

    As to your post, I think you're absolutely right and I know I have a hard time keeping a good attitude about things and delight myself in the Lord. That is something I am always trying to practice. Thank you!

  3. Thank you for your encouraging words, Philothea! And what you shared is very true . . . when we have the attitude of working and serving the Lord, rather than man, it is so much easier to truly delight in our tasks.

    Thank you also for sharing the Scripture verse - it was a blessing to us!

  4. Thank you so much for your comment, Jocelyn! And welcome to our blog. :)

    I can understand about not getting my comment replied to! If you did ever have the time to do so, I would love to hear your thoughts on it. :)

    We are glad that this post was a blessing to you!