Because of Her I Can

“She makes linen garments and sells them, And supplies sashes for the merchants.”

Proverbs 31:24

Ishtee is my wife’s nickname and in the Hebrew language it means “My Woman” and is a term of endearment used by Jewish men towards for their wives. Today is “my woman’s” birthday and is why we (all 16 of us, Lee and I and our 3 kids as well as their spouses and our 8 grandkids) are waking up at the beach today, literally on the beach. As I sit here writing a devotional this morning the waves are rhythmically crashing just outside our door of her favorite beach house that we discovered many years ago when we first came here to Cayucos Beach with some friends.

On Lee’s birthday I always take time to read Proverbs 31 and thank the Lord for the gift I have in her. Her birth into this world has made mine and our family and countless friends worlds a better place. When I read Proverbs 31 thoughts of my wife jump off the page. Verse by verse I get excited as the chapter really does describe her in so many ways. This weekend we as we celebrate her, and we take time to do some treasure hunting for heart shaped rocks on the beach and explore the tide pools at low tide with our kids and grandkids she will also be working too. It’s just what Proverbs 31 women do.

Verse 14 of Proverbs 31 takes on new meaning this year where it says, “She is like the merchant ships, She brings her food from afar”. Not only can my wife grocery shop with the best of them, but this birthday we are dragging a cargo trailer behind the truck filled with her a_hearts_design treasures to sell at the Cayucos Antique Street Faire this Sunday. Yes, my wife planned a weekend to celebrate her birthday and to sell her repurposed creations at an annual antique fair that is happening in town this weekend.

I am not kidding. I really am married to a Proverbs 31 woman as almost every morning she literally gets up before sunrise and starts her day. Though these days she has been busy in her Sheshed making treasures, she loves to plant in her garden and tend to it as it grows, throughly enjoying the fruit of her labor and then sharing it with family and friends. She’s humble, but she looks at her crafty creations and takes pride (the good kind) and joy in what her mind conceives (often with the help of Pinterest) and her hands have made, especially when someone wants to buy something she made and make it their own. Seriously, I can get tired watching her as she has no problem working from sun to sun. Let me tell you, she sleeps hard too! I have the audio recordings to prove it.

I love the end of Proverbs 31 and it seems only fitting to share it with you today in describing my wife as we celebrate her birthday. “She makes linen garments and sells them (or in my wife’s case wooden), And supplies sashes (in her case, wood) for the merchants. Strength and honor are her clothing; She shall rejoice in time to come (hopefully this Sunday at the shows end). She opens her mouth with wisdom, And on her tongue is the law of kindness. She watches over the ways of her household, And does not eat the bread of idleness (but oh how my wife loves bread!). (Today is just another day that) Her children (and her grandchildren) rise up and call her blessed; Her husband also, and he praises her: (I can’t praise my wife enough but I do pray every blessing possible is hers today.) “Many daughters have done well, But you excel them all.” “Charm is deceitful and beauty is passing”, (She is still beautiful if not more beautiful the older she gets). “But a woman who fears the LORD, she shall be praised. (And this is why the heart of this husband trusts his wife and praises her. God has first place in her life and everyone else ties for second.) “Give her of the fruit of her hands, And let her own works praise her in the gates.” (Please Lord, let the “gates” be Main Street here in Cayucos Beach at the street faire. May she sell everything she made and brought, in Jesus name!).

Yes I love reading about Proverbs 31 knowing because of her I can answer the question posed in verse 10 “Who can find a virtuous wife? For her worth is far above rubies.”

Happy Birthday Lee


Michael Osthimer





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