This week, we are continuing to read The Proverbs 31 Woman: One Virtue at a Time by Courtney Joseph at Women Living Well. If you’re just joining us, during the month of April we’ll be reading 6 sections (only 1-2 pages each) every week. We’ve got just one more week with this book and then we’ll be starting Balancing it All by Candace Cameron Bure.
Are You Prepared for the Weather Changes?
This section seems quite appropriate since summer is very quickly approaching! “The Proverbs 31 woman is prepared” and more importantly to me, she is organized. How can you know what your family will need without first knowing what they already have? When I was a kid, my mom spent a full day every spring and fall doing the semi-annual wardrobe switch. I remember hating it because I would have to spend what seemed like hours (and was likely not very long at all) with her trying on nearly everything I owned to see if it still fit me. After we had filled bags to donate and put the few things I could still fit into in my drawers, we went shopping to fill in the gaps. My mom would always have a list of what we had to get – 3 pairs of shorts, 2 skorts (anyone else remember wearing those as a kid?), 5 tank tops, a new pair of shoes, etc. At the time, I hated those days because I just wanted to be outside playing, but looking back I’m pretty impressed with how my mom managed to do that season after season.
The Proverbs 31 Woman is Classy
There is a message in this section that I want to highlight, and I think this has been misconstrued in today’s Christian society. The Proverbs 31 Woman may put her needs last, but she doesn’t ignore them. Courtney states that “when she did finally find time for herself she did not slack off.” I know that I have a tendency to put my husband, friends, and ministries ahead of myself, and that’s ok, but when it takes so much out of me that I have no time or energy left for myself, I need to reevaluate my priorities. Do you need to do some reevaluating this week too?
Help Your Husband Be a Man of Influence
This passage would probably be met with quite a lot of resistance among feminists, but personally I’m ok with it. There is one point that particularly stands out to me: “If your husband cannot lead at home, how can he lead in the community?” Stop and give that some thought. I know that Biblical submission is something I have struggled to figure out in my marriage, but I think it is a key part of this verse. The other important part is that the Proverbs 31 Woman does such an incredible job at managing her home and children that her husband is free to pursue his dreams. What is your husband’s dream? Mine wants to be a successful lawyer someday, and because I love him so much I’ll do anything I can to make that dream to come true for him, including taking this verse to heart.
While you’re helping your husband chase his dreams, you should also be thinking about your dreams. In this section, we see that the Proverbs 31 Woman uses her talents to add to her family’s finances. To me this aligns perfectly with the section we read last week about your dreams. Do you have a dream that you could use to benefit both yourself and your family? I know that it can be scary to take a leap of faith and start a new adventure, but if you prayerfully consider pursuing your dream with excellence, God will lead you where He wants you to go.
Let Me Help You Pick Out your Clothes
It’s easy for us to look at the Proverbs 31 Woman and assume she is perfect, but Courtney points out that she is “human, flawed, but not exposed…she is clothed in strength and dignity.” Isn’t that reassuring?! I think that more than any of the other lesson we’ve learned from this amazing woman, this is one I strive for: to be able to admit that I am a flawed and sinful woman, but to know that through God’s grace I am a new creation. That new creation is how I want the world to see me – clothed in strength and dignity.
Putting Order on Your Tongue
“She opens her mouth with wisdom, and on her tongue is the law of kindness” – Proverbs 31:26
There are two aspects to this verse: wisdom and kindness. I’d like to focus on wisdom, and more particularly, Courtney’s comment on where her wisdom comes from. “From her walk with God, from her life experiences, from wise mentors, wise friends and perhaps good solid literature.” The first part of that description seems fairly obvious, but I wonder how many of us actually give daily priority to our walks with God. If we are not spending time in the word, how can we gain the Godly wisdom that we need in our lives?
With that last question in mind, here is your challenge:
You may notice that I didn’t say your challenge for this week – I’d like to challenge everyone, myself included, to continue this practice beyond just this week. Here is our challenge: read your Bible daily. It’s that simple. If you already do this, good for you! If you haven’t made this a part of your daily routine yet, I truly believe it can be a life changing practice for you.