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I can remember some of the first of many time reading Proverbs 31:10-31 and wondering, “What does this mean?”.
I wasn’t sure how to apply what I was reading to my life in everyday terms. It took me reading it many more times and lots of prayer to understand the simple message God was giving us in those 21 verses.
If I were to explain them in layman’s terms, here’s what Proverbs 31: 10-31 would want us to know.
1. To be a good women.
The good ones are hard to find because they are rare. They are rare because the qualities she shows in Proverbs 31:10-31 takes sacrifice. There’s a lot that has to be sacrificed to posses those qualities. The primary sacrifice being oneself. You have to give up on who you thought you should be to become this women God called you to be.
2. To value my husbands trust.
A husband who trusts his wife, will give her the world. When a wife has the trust of her husband she has gained access to the inner most courts of his being. There is nothing she cannot ask of her husband when she has his trust. There is nothing that he will conceal from her when she has this trust. A husbands trust is to be heavily guarded, preserved and protected by his wife.
3. To have my priorities in order.
She understood that her presence in the home was not optional it was invaluable. I tried to imagine her missing from the family equation and all of the verses after Proverbs 31:10 simply disappeared from my Bible. I imagined a husband not only being the provider but taking on the Proverbs Wife roles in verses 10-31. I then imagined all of the women who take on the responsibilities in those verses in whatever capacity they can after working outside on the home and wonder how overwhelmed they must be. I know how overwhelmed they are because I’ve been there. I gave up career, money and status to pursue what I read in these versus not because I am someone special but because God allowed me to choose between the two and I chose his plan. This goes back to what I said in point number one about each women being the sacrifice necessary to become a Proverbs 31 women.
4. To speak well of and be supportive of my husband.
When others speak badly about their husbands, on her tongue are words of kindness. She encourages him and builds him up when they are alone and in the presence of others.
5. To revere, honor and respect my husband.
Her husband is known and respected in the community and she respects him at home. She supports his goals and his position. She encourages him to be active in the political and religious issues. He is a pillar of his community and
6. To dress nicely and stay physically fit.
She knew her worth and chose garments that would demonstrate that. It’s easy to get in the rut of sweats and t shirts after a few years of marriage and few kids but the Proverbs Wife not only chose feminine fabrics and royal colors, she also made them herself. She took pride in her appearance and was a hard worker, physically caring for her land and home.
7. To speak with wisdom and kindness.
My brother likes to say of people who talk to much, “You just talk because you got lips”. What he means is that the person hasn’t given much thought to what they are saying but merely talking because they have the ability. That’s not who the Proverbs Wife was. She spoke with wisdom and never in anger. She gave careful consideration to the things she said and practiced self control to prevent harsh words from leaving her lips.