Saturday afternoon, my sons and I partook of the Sacrament of Reconciliation (that's confession, for those of you who aren't up on the 'proper sacramental terminology'). And, as he is often wont to do, my priest gave me, as my penance, to read and meditate upon the scriptures for this Sunday's liturgy, which included this passage from Proverbs 31 (vv 10-13, 25-26, 28-31) -
When one finds a worthy wife,
she is far more precious than jewels.
Her husband, entrusting his heart to her,
has an unfailing prize.
She brings him good, and not evil,
all the days of her life.
. . .
Strength and dignity are her clothing,
and she laughs at the time to come.
She opens her mouth with wisdom,
and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.
. . .
Her children rise up and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
"Many women have done excellently,
but you surpass them all."
Charm is decietful, and beauty is vain,
but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.
Give her of the fruit of her hands,
and let her works praise her in the gates.
I won't go into detail on precisely what I confessed, but it was astoundingly appropriate that my penance should include a meditation on the excellent woman whom God has given me for my wife. It's like this entire chapter of Proverbs, which is usually taken as a kind of 'idealized' portrait of a godly wife, was written by someone with detailed knowledge of Molly's life. She really is, and has been since I've known her, 'far more precious than jewels'. And, as I've entrusted my heart to her, she has shown herself over and over to be 'an unfailing prize'. And she has certainly brought me good, and not evil, every day since we've been married.
I know, I know, it's not like this is breaking any new ground here on this blog; I've been singing my wife's praises around these parts from the very beginning. But, when God goes to all the trouble of confirming the message from the Scriptures, and in a sacramental context, no less. . . well, I have to pay attention to it, don't I?