The Modern Proverbs 31 Woman
Part 3 – Her Family
Hey y’all! Welcome back to the Modern Proverbs 31 Woman Series. We are over halfway through and have learned a lot about the work of the Proverbs 31 woman, both inside and outside of her home. We talked about her work as a seamstress and businesswoman as well as her role as a homemaker.
If you are joining us for the first time and would like to catch up on the first half of the series, check out Part 1 – Her Work and Part 2 – Her Household. The example set by this special lady is worth the read so take your time and we will be waiting for you when you get back!
Alright ladies, let’s do a quick recap before we move on.
In Part 1, Her Work, our takeaway point to becoming a Modern Proverbs 31 woman is to start focusing on what we excel at and invest our time in those things. Find your passion and place your energy into that. If we spread ourselves too thin, then the quality of our work suffers. If you don’t know what you are most passionate about, take the time to explore different options. Figure out what things you enjoy doing the most, whether you are talented at those things, and how you and your household can benefit from the time invested in working these areas.
In Part 2, Her Household, we placed the emphasis on fully dedicating ourselves to our family and household. As an excellent wife, we saw the importance of being prepared, organized, and deliberate in our household management. At the same time, we understood that we can only give what is within our abilities and sometimes it’s necessary to ask for help. In the partnership of a home, it is through the love and contributions of each family member that a household is well run.
While the previous two sections focused on the tasks in her day-to-day life, this section will highlight the Proverbs 31 woman’s relationships within her household. A well-managed house may allow for greater ease throughout the day, but it is the relationships between those who live there that serve to transform the house into a home.
Her husband is known in the gates
when he sits among the elders of the land.
The heart of her husband trusts in her,
And he will have not lack of gain.
She does him good and not evil
all the days of her life.
Her children rise up and bless her;
Her husband also, and he praises her saying:
“Many daughters have done nobly,
But you excel them all.”
These verses give us the first glimpse into the life of the other family members of this household, with an emphasis on the husband. In 1 Corinthians 11:3 it states that the head of every man is Christ, the head of a wife is her husband, and the head of Christ is God. If you are married, your husband is the head of the household. For the Proverbs 31 woman, the head of her household is also an elder or overseer.
There is great responsibility in being an elder of the land because you and your family are set apart as an example for the rest of the community. In 1 Timothy 3:1-7, Paul lays out the requirements for those who want to be an overseer.
Now the overseer is to be above reproach, faithful to his wife, temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not given to drunkenness, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. He must manage his own family well and see that his children obey him, and he must do so in a manner worthy of full respect. (If anyone does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of God’s church?) He must not be a recent convert, or he may become conceited and fall under the same judgment as the devil. He must also have a good reputation with outsiders, so that he will not fall into disgrace and into the devil’s trap.
He has chosen a difficult, but noble path. Following this path requires daily efforts of discipline, prayer, and the desire to strive for continuous spiritual growth. Led by the husband, this family is dedicated to building and strengthening the family’s relationship with God and following the ideals that are set for the household.
As you can see, this is a very special man indeed, but his work is not singular. He is able to do these great things because he has found a great helpmate. He can focus on his family and help to bring others on this marvelous path because his heart is safe with his wife. He is confident in her abilities and judgment. By knowing that her interests are loving and pure, he does not have to worry about every aspect of the managing of the household.
The marriage is the top priority and example of Christ in our lives. Her good works are not for self-seeking purposes, but rather for the love of her husband and children. It is her desire to do good for her husband.
She is faithful. First, she is faithful to God. She follows the instructions laid out in the Bible and sets an example for her children. The priority on her personal relationship with God strengthens the lives of her family and household. She is also faithful to her husband. He does not have to concern himself with her whereabouts or actions because he knows that her heart is with him.
She is supportive. Part of her role as a helpmate is to be positive and encouraging to her husband. In her situation, the Proverbs 31 woman has a husband who is in a very high and visible position. Although all eyes are always on him, he needs her support to be able to succeed. She does not do things that are going to bring him down, but rather build him up. They are a team.
She is trustworthy. The Proverbs 31 husband is confident in his home because he has assurance that his wife will do what is best for the household. She is trusted to raise the children uprightly, to be responsible with the finances, and to ensure that the activities of the home are running properly.
The efforts that the Proverbs 31 woman originate from her love for her family. Her husband and children are the primary source for her desire and dedication to have a nourishing home environment. She is a constant source of kind words, hard work, and godly living that her children rely on to feel comforted and supported. As they grow up, the children mature in their knowledge of the important role that their mother has played in their lives.
Her hard work has paid off.
Upon first reading about the Proverbs 31 woman I was intrigued and inspired by her, but I do realize that for some women her life seems too perfect and therefore unattainable. One recurring theme throughout is how much easier it is for the Proverbs 31 woman because she has a godly husband. While there is no contesting this, as almost anyone would agree that this makes life easier, it doesn’t change the role we are called to fulfill.
Regardless, we can still be faithful, supporting, and trustworthy wives no matter our husband’s role in society.
Being faithful involves a daily commitment. Our focus should first be focused on God and then to our husbands. This daily commitment involves time and effort. To help strengthen our relationship with God, there are little things we can do each day. Set aside time for prayer, worship, and reading in the Bible. We have already discussed the importance of the morning. When things are quiet, before the family sets off in the many directions of the day, pray a blessing over their heads. If mornings are not the time that you shine, then pick another time, but either way, make the time.
Time is also an important factor in the strengthening of our relationship with our husbands. The Proverbs 31 husband says that his wife excels them all. She is a gem to him. We can be a gem too if we choose to spend our time polishing ourselves, inside and out. Take care to spend time with your husband and let him know that his heart is safe in your hands.
Support him in all things. By having a greater level of support, he will feel more respected and hopefully will be encouraged to be an even better man. There are times when you might not always agree with the direction your husband’s career or hobbies are going. Perhaps he works too much or not enough or spends too much time playing golf or hanging out with his friends. If that is the case, then talk to him about it. Try not to be discouraging or judgmental, but rather express your concerns in a reasonable way.
Will this always work? Probably not, but using hurtful words or expressing it in a moment of passion will more than likely create a greater wedge between the two of you.
Like faithfulness, trust is not built over night. It takes time for us to feel as if we can trust another person. Once that trust is broken, it can take a lifetime to get back. There are many aspects of trust in a marriage beyond fidelity. If you have trust in something, you are confident in it. If the goal of your household is to have well raised children and a maintained home, then your husband should be confident that you are doing your part and vice versa.
Raising children is not something that should be taken lightly and I have the utmost respect for all women who are mothers. My sister has 5 children and I am exhausted at the thought of letting them all sleepover at my house. How she does it or how any woman does it day in and day out is beyond me.
When children are young, their greatest source of influence is at home. As a modern Proverbs 31 woman, we have a responsibility to teach our children about God and the Bible. While a good deal can be learned in church, it is the example that is set in the home that will be a primary authority on how they live their life. What relationships are and what they are supposed to be should be made apparent in the home. We are setting the standard for the next generation.
It has been said that if you want your children to speak a certain way, then you should speak a certain way. If you want them to act a certain way, then you have to act a certain way. “Do as I say and not as I do” might be commonly quoted, but rarely is it effective as a teaching philosophy.
To be a noble wife and one that is called blessed by her husband and children, there really is only one thing that we have to do and that is to love them. All of the things that the Proverbs 31 woman does are not just tasks to be marked off the to-do list, but rather the declaration of love she exhibits in her household. As a modern Proverbs 31 woman, we are called to do just the same.