Being a Proverbs 31 Woman

During the course of doing this study it became clear to me that the Proverbs 31 Woman as depicted here is very much what many women want to be today. I’m talking about those who want to work at home and be there for their families, instead of being out in the workforce away from their homes and families.

The cost of childcare has gone through the roof which has made it difficult for many, however, those providing the childcare also deserve to be recompensed for their time and what they do. The need for police checks and screenings to ensure our children are safe when in the care of another has increased the desire and need to be at home with our families. And the fact that so many families are now isolated and away from their extended family connections for many reasons: chasing work in another region or state, family breakdowns, the need to get away from abusive family members and so on.

Family life as we knew it from a generation or two ago has changed considerably and yet the longing for us to bring it all back together to give our children a family life balance has become a strong desire and a necessity.

I thank God that He gave me both the desire and then the opportunity (and the ability to recognise that opportunity) 13 years ago so I could be home for our 5 girls as they were growing up. I have been home for them during their teenage years and they are all now young adults in their 20s and moving into a working world – two of them are also married.

I see my role today very much being like that in Titus 2:4-5 Then they can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.

Being busy at home can include operating a business at home to help support the family, as long as it’s not put ahead of the family, i.e. there needs to be a balance in the time spent in the business and in the home doing mothering and housewifely duties. I’ve always enjoyed keeping house and cooking and am happy to take myself into the kitchen to prepare the evening meal before my husband comes home. Just knowing he appreciates it means so much and just last week when he came home he told me “You don’t know how good it is to know that you are here to come home to.” It made me wonder what was said at work that day by one of his mates.

2 Responses to “Being a Proverbs 31 Woman”

  1. Miss Eagle Says:

    I would like to direct you to a few things in Proverbs 31. We know little about the husband. We don’t know what work he does. There is a substantial part of the chapter given to the work the woman does but none to his. We do know that he is known in the public areas of the community and sits with the elders. It would appear that he spent a lot of time talking. Did he provide any income? We know nothing of it. But we know she is hard at work producing the family income: everything from real estate development to import/export and textile manufacture. We know her lamp does not go out at night (v.18) and yet we are told that she rises early while it is yet night (v.15) to organise things for her family and get her servants working. When does she sleep, we might ask? You must remember that this man is Jewish and every day in prayers are words thanking God that he is not born a woman. These prayers are still said to day by Orthodox Jews.

    I believe in the accomplished woman and certainly the woman described in Proverbs 31 is accomplished, intimidatingly so. But I am tired of Proverbs 31. I feel ready to scream if I here some male get up to read it on Mother’s Day. You see, so often this seems to be the only thing that men in the pulpit know to say about women. An idealised picture of a women working her fingers to the bone for her men and her children! There is no mention of the better portion of Mary listening to Jesus. There is no mention of the resourcing and nurturing of Jesus’ ministry by women. There is no mention of the female apostle, Junia, or the teaching ministries of Paul’s female friends. Women are truly liberated in Christ far beyond the limitations of Proverbs 31 – but so many would limit and deny us still. Jesus never did!

  2. proverbs31 Says:

    Hi Miss Eagle, the point of Proverbs 31:10-31 was about the woman, not about the man. There is lots in other places in the bible about the men. Also Jesus wasn’t yet born at that stage, but I think you’re asking why men in the pulpit go on about it, instead of using other women as examples in Christ’s time. Titus 2 as mentioned above is a good example and there are lots of others.

    I started this study at the beginning of 2006 and it seems 2006 was a year of explosion for Proverbs 31 – I have no idea why. But it is a good book to study. Perhaps part of the reason is because so many women want to work at home these days and be there for their families and the Proverbs 31 Woman is a good example of that.

    Perhaps you need to start seeking out other reading material so you don’t feel there’s too much of Proverbs 31 in your life.

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