|Eishet Chayil: 3 Qualities|
|Written by anonymous|
“A woman of valor” – what are the qualities of someone of ‘valor?’ “And you shall discern from among the entire people, men of valor; God-fearing people, men of truth, people who despise money.” (Exodus 18:21) According to this verse, there are three qualities to a person of valor: 1) God-fearing, 2) truth, and 3) despise money.
I began by having these qualities in mind when singing Eishet Chayil to my wife at the Shabbat table. Each one of those qualities permeates our home because of her. Our Shabbat is on an entirely higher level because her fear of God is so real. We all act differently on Shabbat because of the sense of awe that she brings to our home.
How does her quality of truth affect our Shabbat? A person of truth will not act according to all the complex rules of Shabbat without it being a reflection of her inner being. My wife’s Shabbat is ‘Emet” because her whole being is filled with Shabbat. All the external actions; Shabbat candles, the way the table is set, the food she prepares, the way it is served, even the way we sing, are all because we sense Shabbat and the actions are an honest reflection of what we experience. I could not sing Eishet Chayil as a pro-forma praise of my wife: it wouldn’t be honest. It is real every week.
I have seen many people who use their best silver, china and crystal to honor Shabbat, but their beautiful things are not matched by their behavior. We are poor. Money does not really matter to my wife. The most beautiful things on our Shabbat table are the people and the way they behave when celebrating Shabbat.
These are the qualities of a woman of ‘valor.’ These are the qualities I honor in my wife when I sing Eishet Chayil.