As I sit here typing during naptime, it is easy for me to aspire to being the wife described in Proverbs 31: calm, gentle, humble, noble and productive. When it comes to the real world though, I fall short every day! Maybe you feel that way too and think that reading this chapter of the Bible seems more like a burden than a blessing at times.
Recently a friend commented, “I wish I could be more like the Proverbs 31 wife, to get up early and get things done so I could enjoy my children instead of trying to get things done and keep them out of trouble at the same time.” I can certainly identify with that sentiment! It seems that “each day has enough trouble of its own” as the book of Matthew says. And it is hard to be on top of our game every single moment of every single day of every single…well, I think you get what I’m going for here.
I hope I can encourage you that the purpose for reading this chapter is not to try to be perfect but to find practical applications in developing the fruits of the spirit and the heart that God wants us to have as wives, mothers and women. Our talents may not be primarily found in cooking, organization, sewing or saving money. It doesn’t mean that we neglect the development of these skills if they will benefit our family but that we realize we are a work in progress.
“She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: “Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.” Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised. Honor her for all that her hands have done, and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.” Proverbs 31:27-31
Honor and praise can be given us by men and it’s important for others to see Christ in us. It’s a blessing to be called blessed by our husband and children even if we don’t literally hear that appreciation expressed every day :) Yet our service is mainly for God. A verse I often share with my children is Colossians 3:23: “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.”
We can “do” so many things but the best thing to do is to fall back on God’s grace as we learn His individual desires for us in the areas of family, home and work. All our striving eventually leads us back to the cross and the sufficiency of Christ. And I’m thankful to God that He always provides grace for the moment that we need it!
“Nothing in my hand I bring; Simply to Thy cross I cling.
Rock of Ages, cleft for me; Let me hide myself in Thee.”