Old photo of my husband’s parents
“Who can find a virtuous woman? For her price is far above rubies.”
Those who know me will tell you that I do not care for football. Since my husband enjoys it so immensely, I have at times put forth an exerted effort to focus on an entire game, only to find that after about 5 minutes my mind is drifting off to other things. America’s sport (stats show football has jumped ahead of baseball in the polls) just does not hold my attention.
Once a year, during the ‘big game,’ I try with renewed determination to appreciate the sport. Every Super Bowl Sunday, out of love for my husband and my desire to connect with what matters to him, I try. This past weekend, I failed as miserably as in my previous attempts. (Sorry, dear, I tried!)
Like many non-football fans, I do enjoy watching Super Bowl commercials. What I prefer to skip is the half-time show. It seems that every year, the theme of the show is either, ‘Raunchy’ or ‘More Raunchy.’ This year’s performance by Beyoncé fit the profile. I heard little vocal talent but saw much provocative gyrating. What I find offensive, though, matters little to ratings. The networks only spew out what our society demands; hence, scantily clad, overtly suggestive women performers will continue to dominate the half-time entertainment.
Unfortunately, there is infatuation in our culture with racy women. Brittany, Paris, and Madonna are but a few. Their names are not typically synonymous with virtuous, or ‘moral excellence.’ These women have shaken off the ‘prudish dust’ of virtuosity and replaced it with self-expression. To them, the more lascivious, the better. The more controversial, the more their popularity soars. Sadly, this new brand of womanhood is breeding droves of young fans, longing to emulate everything they represent.
A virtuous woman, as is described in Proverbs 31, is rapidly becoming extinct. Although penned thousands of years ago, one can almost hear God earnestly pleading today, “Who can find a virtuous woman?” Where did she go? With each passing generation bringing fewer who value moral excellence, His plea becomes more urgent. Where are women who will strive for His principles rather than the unbridled restraint so rampant today?
Some argue that the only women living wanton lifestyles are those famous ones in the entertainment industry. Based on the prevalence of crude reality shows and music videos, it must be translating into the population at large; otherwise, the industry would dwindle. Either way, we would be wise to take a solemn look at what such lifestyles produce – addictions, narcissism, careless divorces, reconstructive surgeries to the point of disfigurement and discontent. These ‘progressive’ women exchange virtue for pleasure and often realize too late that, in doing so, they have traded away something of great value and thereby witness their lives fall apart.
God is not chauvinistic in His desire for godly virtue. He does not want women locked in castles wearing chastity belts! He expects virtue because He knows what an important gift it is; a gift that builds value in her and brings value to others, especially, to a spouse. Unlike any other trait in a woman, moral excellence seals a man’s heart with a confidence that no money can buy. She may not be as sexy, skinny or flashy as a Super Bowl entertainer is, but a virtuous woman offers him much more. With virtue comes courage, another definition for it. She will have the courage to stand up for what she knows is right, to share only privately with her husband her most intimate beauty, and to stand unwaveringly by her man. She is truly a gift.
One Super Bowl, just after the ‘wardrobe-malfunctioning’, gyrating half-time show has ended, what needs to come next is a commercial, opening simply with a man whose arm is around his wife. Unlike the one who just performed on stage, the woman next to him is one who is ‘above reproach.’ She could be, but need not be outwardly attractive, because to him she is the most beautiful woman in the world.
What follows in the ad are scenes of Beyoncé in juxtaposition with numerous of the man and his bride. Then, one shot focuses only on Beyoncé in concert with the words, ‘Attending a Beyoncé concert: $277.’ Later, another one showing her at the game with the script, ‘Seeing Beyoncé in the Super Bowl: $3000.’ Those images are all the commercial needs except for one. At the end, the camera zooms in on just the wife with the clincher: ‘Being married to a virtuous woman: PRICELESS!.’
Elizabeth, a virtuous woman who was dearly loved, especially by her man!
To the rest of the world, she may not be famous and she certainly will never put on a half-time show; but to the man who both loves and trusts in her, she is a woman whose “…price is far above rubies.”