10Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.
11The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil.
12She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.
13She seeketh wool, and flax, and worketh willingly with her hands.
14She is like the merchants' ships; she bringeth her food from afar.
15She riseth also while it is yet night, and giveth meat to her household, and a portion to her maidens.
16She considereth a field, and buyeth it: with the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard.
17She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms.
18She perceiveth that her merchandise is good: her candle goeth not out by night.
19She layeth her hands to the spindle, and her hands hold the distaff.
20She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth forth her hands to the needy.
21She is not afraid of the snow for her household: for all her household are clothed with scarlet.
22She maketh herself coverings of tapestry; her clothing is silk and purple.
23Her husband is known in the gates, when he sitteth among the elders of the land.
24She maketh fine linen, and selleth it; and delivereth girdles unto the merchant.
25Strength and honour are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come.
26She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.
27She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness.
28Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her.
29Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all.
30Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the LORD, she shall be praised.
31Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates.
Proverbs 31:10-31 (KJV)
It has been on my heart for awhile to do some sort of a series on the Proverbs 31 woman. I am a long way from these standards, to be sure, but I think God put this (among many other things) in scripture to kind of give a vision to us wives and mothers on what our life should look like. While I realize this is not a checklist, I would like to go through the various characteristics of this ideal as I work on becoming the woman God wants me to be. I don't want to say I will focus on one per week, because there may be some things I want/need to focus on, or touch on more, or maybe even less. For now, let's just say I will be working on one characteristic at a time. :) Feel free to join me and comment/discuss your experiences!
The first characteristic in the Proverbs 31 woman is found in verses 11-12.
"The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil. She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life."
Ah, I have such a long way to go in this, but this is so much easier for me than it used to be. I believe these 2 verses are a good summary of all God wants us to be in regards of being a wife. This covers so many areas! It all comes down to, can your husband fully trust you to do him good and not evil, ALWAYS? Not only on the surface, but in your heart and attitude as well? When he's not around, are you STILL doing him good and not evil? Are you making sure you are careful what you talk about to others? HOW you talk about your husband to others? If you have issues with the way he's doing things, are you making sure to not only go to HIM (instead of friends or family) about it, but also going to him *respectfully*? Are you honoring and reverencing your husband the way God wants us to be? Are you *bringing* him honor? One thing I used to be in a bad habit of (mostly before I was saved), was joining in on the poking fun of him with family and friends. Not behind his back, but when he was there, and he was good-natured about it. BUT, it was usually putting him into the category of what most of society thinks of men today, and looking back it was just not cool. Even if he wasn't directly hurt by it, here's the deal. Since we've been saved, my husband has told me numerous times that next to God, MY opinion of him is the only one that counts as far as he is concerned. Us wives have so much influence on how our husbands view themselves. When we were married, we became one flesh...that is a huge thing! One is truly affected by pretty much everything the other does. If I keep poking fun at my husband's very character, even if it IS just in fun, that is still going to eventually wear on his confidence, especially his confidence in what kind of a husband and father he is.
Does this mean we cannot have any disagreements? Of course it doesn't! It just means that when we do, we bring it up respectfully and *submissively*. Ooooh, now THERE'S a word that's controversial to utter, isn't it? I may touch more on submission this week, since I think that's a big part of of the kind of wife the Proverbs 31 woman is, but for now I will continue with our husbands trusting in their wives.
Ephesians 5:33 says, "Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband."
God knows what each of us needs! He commands husbands to *love* their wives, and he commands wives to *reverence* their husbands. Yes, we both need love and respect, but in the relationship structure men NEED respect like women NEED love. Giving your husband respect IS showing him love! If you don't respect your husband, anything else you do to try to "show" him love will mean absolutely nothing to him.
I almsot feel like this was a rambling post, but I'm going to leave it. :) As I said earlier this characteristic covers such broad area in regards to being a wife to your husband, and I'd never be able to cover everything. I just thought I'd share what personal experiences stick out in my mind, and what's on my heart. As I said, feel free to comment and start a discussion, or just share your thoughts. As a forewarning, any disrespectful comments will be deleted. I do have a family and a home to take care of, so I don't have time to debate something that's already set in stone for me and for many others, as I'm sure they'd agree. Respectful discussion is fine, but this is MY blog, and if I deem something to be disrespectful, it WILL be deleted.
And speaking of taking care of family, my youngest is clearly ready for bed. ;)