January 5, 2017/Clever Women

History is full of clever women.

It is also full of men who believe ‘they’ can find a way around them. One of my favorite musicals is CAMELOT. I love the sets, the music, the poignant ending (although, I admit I would much rather have a happily-ever-after with Arthur version that to have Guinevere run off with the ‘too-full-of-himself’ Lancelot!) One of my favorite songs is ‘How to Handle a Woman’ (especially when sung by Richard Burton). Arthur is attempting to convince himself and others that love is the best way to find common ground between men and women.

I agree.

That said, however, there are times when women have to utilize their ‘smarts’ to achieve their goals. Feminists might have fallen for that ‘I Am Woman’ song…but I have found that you CANNOT have it all. Something always suffers; just as therre is no 50/50 in a marriage. You may have 60/40, 30/70, 45.6/45.4, but anyone who says marriage is 50/50 either hasn’t been married very long or is suffering with a lot of wishful thinking. You also can’t have it all in life contrary to a lot of feminists’ beliefs.

It would nice if the world worked the way we would like it to–but it doesn’t. Marriage. Motherhood. Career. You can try as hard as you like but it is a balancing act in which something suffers even if you don’t want to admit it. Our perception may be that they can juggle everything and come out on top but we don’t see inside the masks they wear. While outwardly perfection, they drop the ball sometimes, too.

But  we have many women who do their best to give their best. They are the clever scientists, mothers, nannies, CEO’s, bankers, realtors, writers, professors, soldiers, etc. (I could go on and on) who go on about their jobs and lives simply doing the best they can with what they can, and with the hand they are given. One of my absolute FAVORITE women on televison was Gracie Allen. Anyone who remembers the BURNS AND ALLEN show knows Gracie made a fortune over pretending she was a ditz. Yet, she always managed to use her screwball tactics to turn things around and come up the winner over George. She didn’t pretend to be clever; she simply looked at life differently but realistically. Gracie made sense out of the senseless everyday things in life that happened–and she changed everything around her so that by the time she was finished, everyone else made sense out of the senseless, too!

The Bible is full of clever women. Rebekah, Esther, Abigail, are all just some examples. Two clever women are often overlooked, however.

Shiphrah & Puah.

Don’t worry if their names don’t ring a bell, they didn’t with me, either. Exodus 1:15-19 –And the king of Egypt spake to the Hebrew midwives, of which the name of the one was Shiphrah, and the name of the other Puah: And he said, When ye do the ofofice of a midwife to the Hebrew women, and see them upon the stools; if it be a son, then ye shall kill him: but if it be a daughter, then she shall live. But the midwives feared God, and did not as the king of Egypt commanded them, but saved the men children alive. And the king of Egypt called for the midwives, and said unto them, Why have ye done this thing, and have saved the men children alive? And the midwives said unto Pharaoh, Because the Hebrew women are not as the Egyptian women; for they are lively, and are delivered ere the midwives come in unto them.

Talk about being clever! They feared God but I am sure they also feared the king. So they came up with a way to work around their problem with the king’s order in order to try to find a solution. Somehow, they had to take the senseless order to kill and make some kind of sensible solution. They did so by giving a reasonable explanation to the king for their inaction. Now, the king may have wondered if they were being truthful but he couldn’t prove their explanation was wrong. We know reading further on in the chapter that the king didn’t change his mind about killing Hebrew baby boys–but he didn’t take it out on these two clever women.

Maybe he was worried that these two women might be a bit too smart for him!

Take time to applaud the women around you today. If you look hard enough, I’ll bet you find a few who remind you of Shiphrah and Puah….you might even find a few that remind you of Gracie Allen!


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