“Gray hair is a glorious crown; it is found in the ways of righteousness.” Proverbs 16:31 CSB
Hair, in its original form in this verse means “crown of splendor”. I gave this verse to my mother once in a card, she wasn’t pleased. Gray hair isn’t always a woman’s preference. But a woman who walks with the Lord, it is her crown of splendor for her faith.
I know a woman who has modeled righteousness for me my entire life. She was one of my mother’s best friends. Today is her 97th birthday. She lived down the hill from us in Tidal. When Reva came to visit, and I offered her a mud pie as I played outside one sunny afternoon, she accepted it without hesitation. Reva is an incredible woman. She wears her faith so quietly, you can easily miss the depth of it. But she’s a country woman, and country women know a thing or two about faith.
They understand why God uses farming analogies so often in the Bible. They know you have to till the land and prepare it for the seed. They know the seed has to have enough water and sunlight to make it grow. Too much of one or the other will kill it. They know it takes months of growing before it can be harvested. They know the work it takes to bring in the crops. I can see my mother canning vegetables in our basement, steam rolling all around, sweat dripping off of her face. But the Lord had provided. The months of praying and waiting had come to fruition, God had blessed us.
I have a picture of Reva and my Mom standing together on Reva’s front porch in my guest bedroom. Mom’s smile beaming to be back with her friend. How I loved those visits on her porch. Getting to sit under the tutelage of such spiritual power houses, not even realizing the privilege at the time. Listening to them talk as they discuss a lifetime of ups and downs that they had shared together, yet neither of them losing their faith. Their trust in God unswerving, their actions speaking louder than any sermon ever preached. A lifetime of sharing the gospel, one act of love at a time.
God has given them crowns of splendor for their lives lived in righteousness. He does the same for us. We may color it, but the gray is still there. It marks a life well lived in Christ. It’s His crown of splendor.