A Good Thing!
James E. Farley
Proverbs 18:22 reads, “Whoso findeth a wife findeth a good thing, and obtaineth favour of the Lord.” The Wise Man says that a “prudent wife is from the Lord” (Proverbs 19:14), and exclaims, “... her price is far above rubies.” (Proverbs 31:10). Indeed, “A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband ...” (Proverbs 12:4).
On June 7, 2008, my wife Linda and I celebrated our thirty-fifth wedding anniversary. These thirty-five (plus) years have been filled with good times and bad, with great blessings and hardships, laughter of joy and happiness, and tears of sorrow. We have reared two children during this time, and we now have five grandchildren. We have moved thirteen times during these thirty-five years. For the first four years of our marriage, I was in the U.S. Army, and four of those moves where during that time. We moved twice during the next four years of college at Freed-Hardeman. Linda never once complained about these moves and has stood stalwartly by my side over these past thirty-six years. She has been and is one of my greatest sources of strength, stability, and steadfastness. I am thankful to the Lord for her!
I attended a small “school of preaching” in 1972-73 designed for military personnel while I was stationed in Germany, and from that time, we both knew that I would preach. In fact, from that time I began preaching almost every Sunday. In 1977, I left the military and enrolled at Freed-Hardeman College to further my education. Linda has been the model preacher’s wife over these years. A great deal of this good attitude has to be attributed to her upbringing by good and godly parents, Chet and Rose Talbott. Chet was a career military man (28 years), has served as an elder in the church with two congregations, and has been a gospel preacher for several years. Linda, the oldest of six children, learned a great deal from her parents about faithfulness in the church of our Lord, and about moving from place-to-place with grace and patience. Chet and Rose have been good examples to many over the years, and especially to their six children, and to their grandchildren.
Ezekiel quoted a proverb and used it against Judah, saying that Judah of his day was, basically, just like they had always been: ungodly, unfaithful, and even treacherous. However, the proverb can be a positive one, and when used in this positive way, it certainly applies to my wife and her mother. It reads, “As is the mother, so is her daughter.” (Ezekiel 16:44). Linda learned a great deal about how to be a good woman, a good wife, a good mother, a good grandmother, from her own mother, and, indeed, from her godly grandmother, Iola McBee Nolke. She is passing these traits down, through example and teaching, to our daughter, Jenni, and to our granddaughters.
A worthy woman is indeed a precious and rare jewel to be sought and prized. As we read about the worthy woman in Proverbs 31, we see that she is trustworthy. Her speech and her life are filled with wisdom and understanding. She is a successful homemaker and is business-minded and industrious. She makes her home a pleasant place for her family. She trains children, and they ultimately bless her name. My Linda is one that I fully trust, and our home has been greatly blessed by her good efforts. She has, indeed, trained our children (and grandchildren) to pray, to love the Bible, to have Christian love, kindness and compassion. Linda has never been one to fret and worry, but has expressed great confidence with a “we can do it through the Lord” attitude. She often says, “Let’s not worry about it; the Lord will take care of us.” (Matthew 6:24-34; Philippians 4:4-13).
I am nothing, but what little success I have achieved in this life, I attribute to Linda being by my side. She has, among all who know her, a well-earned reputation as a good woman, a faithful wife, and mother: an example of what a preacher’s wife should be!
“Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her. Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all. Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised. Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates.” (Proverbs 31:28-31). -1179 Mark Wayne Dr., Louisa, KY 41230.
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