I've read this passage several times but it only just dawned on me that the Proverbs 31 Woman is actually a wife! I mean I knew she was married, but it's almost like it just hit me that the passage is an ode to a good wife. Whatever sha, regardless of marital status, her character is what all women should aspire to, right?
BTW I'm using the Message version here.
10-31A good woman is hard to find,
and worth far more than diamonds.
Her husband trusts her without reserve,
and never has reason to regret it.
She is trustworthy. The same way she is in public is the same way she is in private. She is not two-faced. She can be trusted with pretty much anything - money, secrets, responsibilities and more. Nobody finds a reason to regret knowing and having her in their lives.
Never spiteful, she treats him generously all her life long.
She doesn't hold grudges and doesn't act out of spite. I'm so guilty of this and being passive aggressive when annoyed. But we should aspire to forgive and move on.
She shops around for the best yarns and cottons,
and enjoys knitting and sewing.
To me, this means that she lives a lifestyle of quality. In this day and age of fast fashion, it's easy to throw money away because you can always buy new stuff. But think about her - she spends money on quality items that are classic, long-lasting and perpetually stylish. I'm not saying you must buy designer items because as a trustworthy person, she wouldn't live above her means. She also has hobbies that she nurtures. It could be sewing, knitting, reading, blogging, fitness, whatever. The point is that she does have an activity that she enjoys doing in her spare time, which means she takes care of herself and her needs as well.
She’s like a trading ship that sails to faraway places
and brings back exotic surprises.
I'm trying to figure this one out, but it seems to me that she's great at giving gifts. Like she chooses carefully and knows what the recipient's tastes are.
She’s up before dawn, preparing breakfast for her family and organizing her day.
She's a planner and organizer. Whether she has a family or not, she takes time to prepare and plan ahead. I think that she doesn't let a minute go wasted, even if that time is allotted to having fun. She probably eats healthy too and cares about what she puts in her body.
She looks over a field and buys it, then, with money she’s put aside, plants a garden.
I told you she's smart with her money right? She carefully considers her money and business plans. The fact that she puts money aside means that a. she lives BELOW her means, and b. she SAVES money (or has a profitable business). With the money that she saves, she reinvests it to work even further for her.
First thing in the morning, she dresses for work,
rolls up her sleeves, eager to get started.
This verse to me shows that she actually enjoys her work! She's not working just to make a living - she's in a profession and career that she likes. Gawsh, Lord please help me get to this point as soon as possible! I need this in my life!
She senses the worth of her work,
is in no hurry to call it quits for the day.
Do you know how many women downplay their achievements and accomplishments? I'm one of those. But not this woman! She knows what she's worth and what her work means. She's proud of what she's done and nobody can take that away from her.
She’s skilled in the crafts of home and hearth, diligent in homemaking.
She can take care of herself and others around her. Husband o. Family o. Friends o. Everyone loves being around her because she knows how to make everyone feel comfortable and at home.
She’s quick to assist anyone in need, reaches out to help the poor.
She's generous and has a heart for others. She's not just about her self and her interests. She does what she can to help others in need. Whether it's by donating money, time, whatever, she makes it a point to give back.
She doesn’t worry about her family when it snows;
their winter clothes are all mended and ready to wear.
Earlier, the passage already mentioned that she's a planner and organizer at heart. No matter what comes her way, she's prepared and ready to tackle anything.
She makes her own clothing, and dresses in colorful linens and silks.
This to me means that she's a woman of great style. She knows what kind of clothes suit her body type and isn't trying to be fashionable or trendy, because she knows that style is FOREVER.
Her husband is greatly respected when he deliberates with the city fathers.
Imma skip this one because it's talking about her husband directly.
She designs gowns and sells them, brings the sweaters she knits to the dress shops.
Does this mean she's a designer? Maybe, maybe not. Whatever it is though, she's skilled at what she does!
Her clothes are well-made and elegant, and she always faces tomorrow with a smile.
Again, another verse that talks about her style! Who said the Bible doesn't talk about clothing or Christians are supposed to be dowdy? Not so! This woman is very well put together. Not just on the outside, but also from within. Remember, "You're never fully dressed without a smile!."
When she speaks she has something worthwhile to say, and she always says it kindly.
This is a woman who is wise, speaks with confidence and is knowledgeable. It's not about gist and gossip. The words that come out of her mouth build people up - even if it's criticism, it is constructive and said with kindness. This is a woman you want to be friends with because she speaks the truth, and with love.
She keeps an eye on everyone in her household,
and keeps them all busy and productive.
She watches out for those who are around her circle and wants only the best for them. She wants them to live their best lives and fully realize the potential within them. Her friends can always count on her to give them practical advice.
Her children respect and bless her;
her husband joins in with words of praise:
“Many women have done wonderful things,
but you’ve outclassed them all!”
She is praised by those close to her. They can't stop raving about her and this speaks directly to her character and the traits that she possesses.
Charm can mislead and beauty soon fades.
The woman to be admired and praised
is the woman who lives in the Fear-of-God.
While she may be beautiful on the outside, it's what is within her heart - the fear of God - that makes her truly something!
Give her everything she deserves!
Festoon her life with praises!
To all the women out there, I hope this post speaks to you and inspires you to be the woman that God called you to be. I hope that you're gingered to be the best version of yourself.
God bless and Happy International Women's Day.