Give her the product of her hands, and let her works praise her in the gates.
(Proverbs 31:3, NCV)
I love thrifting. You can’t beat finding a great deal. I’ve even been known to take things from a trash heap. My daughters were mortified when I asked them to help me pick up a discarded chest one afternoon. I knew it had potential. Other than a rough corner a dog had gnawed on, it was in great shape. You could still smell the cedar inside, and its original skeleton key was taped to the bottom. When I saw the Lane brand burned into the lid's underside, I knew I had a treasure. That maker’s mark signaled excellence, and I hauled it home. After a little shabby-chic paint, and new plush fabric over the top, my girls’ embarrassment was gone, and they fought over it. I shared a lesson with them that my momma had taught me, “always check the labels, they are a sure sign of quality.” I wish some of the guys I dated had a maker’s mark. I could flip him over and know if he was worth it. Same with a few of my friends.
Did you know that the creative God of the universe left His mark on you? This mark reveals how much He values you and your work. I mentioned in my previous post that Proverbs 31 is sung over women to celebrate her strength. Proverbs 31:31 gives us a clue as to how God has left His mark on us.
Give her the product of her hands and let her works praise her in the gates.
Proverbs 31:31 begins with the Hebrew letter tav. Tav holds the word picture of a cross, a mark, or a sign, like “x” marks the spot. We tend to believe signs when we see them, like that Lane label on the cedar chest I found confirmed its quality. Because of the confidence, these signs give us, the letter tav also represents truth. This is interesting when we consider the last verse in Proverbs 31 is filled with praise for the woman’s work; the mark she leaves. The entire Proverbs 31 passage praises her three-times. Biblically, the number three is a symbol of fullness and completion, so God is completely honoring her works, and what He says is truth.
Here’s another little nugget. The Hebrew word for truth is amet.
Alef, the first letter of the Hebrew alphabet
Mem -the middle letter of the Hebrew alphabet
Tav – the last letter of the Hebrew alphabet
Don’t miss the strategic placements of these letters. God’s truth is fully contained in the “alef-bet.” Here, in Proverbs 31 it’s as if God is leaving His final mark to note that everything said about this strong woman is true. He’s placed His maker’s mark.
Signatures are marks of ownership. Even today, some will sign their names with an X. This is tav. Did you know, just like He signed off on the Proverbs Woman's work, God signed His masterpiece of creation too?
Genesis 2:3, NASB states,
Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it
He rested from all work which God had created and made.
The final letters of the final three words of this verse, in order, are alef, mem, and tav. God spoke creation, and the last phrase bestowing the completion of creation encompasses truth, but He didn’t stop there. You see, the final letter, on the final word, describing the final day of creation, is tav. God added the final hue of color then signed His name across creation to mark His ownership over all, and He did it again in Proverbs 31.
Strong women, when you acknowledge the cross' sign, you are marked for eternity as His. His truth is a sign of your value. I’m curious. Knowing that your works at the city gates, your places of activity and life will be honored and praised, what mark do you want to leave on this Earth?
Please leave a comment.