Proverbs, Chapter 31

(1) The words of king Lemuel, the prophecy that his mother taught him. (2) What, my son? and what, the son of my womb? and what, the son of my vows? (3) Give not thy strength unto women, nor thy ways to that which destroyeth kings. (4) It is not for kings, O Lemuel, it is not for kings to drink wine; nor for princes strong drink: (5) Lest they drink, and forget the law, and pervert the judgment of any of the afflicted. (6) Give strong drink unto him that is ready to perish, and wine unto those that be of heavy hearts. (7) Let him drink, and forget his poverty, and remember his misery no more. (8) Open thy mouth for the dumb in the cause of all such as are appointed to destruction. (9) Open thy mouth, judge righteously, and plead the cause of the poor and needy. (10) Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies. (11) The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil. (12) She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life. (13) She seeketh wool, and flax, and worketh willingly with her hands. (14) She is like the merchants' ships; she bringeth her food from afar. (15) She riseth also while it is yet night, and giveth meat to her household, and a portion to her maidens. (16) She considereth a field, and buyeth it: with the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard. (17) She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms. (18) She perceiveth that her merchandise is good: her candle goeth not out by night. (19) She layeth her hands to the spindle, and her hands hold the distaff. (20) She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth forth her hands to the needy. (21) She is not afraid of the snow for her household: for all her household are clothed with scarlet. (22) She maketh herself coverings of tapestry; her clothing is silk and purple. (23) Her husband is known in the gates, when he sitteth among the elders of the land. (24) She maketh fine linen, and selleth it; and delivereth girdles unto the merchant. (25) Strength and honour are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come. (26) She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness. (27) She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness. (28) Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her. (29) Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all. (30) Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the LORD, she shall be praised. (31) Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates.

A Random Prayer...

Blessing of a Stable

O Lord, Almighty God, who didst decree that Thy only- begotten Son, our Redeemer, should be born in a stable and laid in a manger between an ox and an ass, bless, we beseech Thee, this stable and preserve it from every deceit and snare of the devil that horses and cattle within it may be healthy and secure from all harm. And if "the ox knoweth his owner, and the ass his master's crib," grant that Thy servants, whom Thou hast made to Thy own image and hast placed only a little lower than the angels may not be like unreasoning animals; that they may not be like the horse and the mule that have no understanding, but that they may acknowledge Thee, the one true God, the Author of all good, and that Thy servants may persevere in Thy service. Grant that Thy servants may always give thanks to Thee for the gifts they have received from Thee; and make them worthy to receive ever greater benefits. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen. Translated by Most Reverend J. H. Schlarman Bishop of Peoria

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