Key Verse: Her children respect and bless her. (Proverbs 31:28 MSG)
10-31 A good woman is hard to find,
and worth far more than diamonds.
Her husband trusts her without reserve,
and never has reason to regret it.
Never spiteful, she treats him generously
all her life long.
She shops around for the best yarns and cottons,
and enjoys knitting and sewing.
She’s like a trading ship that sails to faraway places
and brings back exotic surprises.
She’s up before dawn, preparing breakfast
for her family and organizing her day.
She looks over a field and buys it,
then, with money she’s put aside, plants a garden.
First thing in the morning, she dresses for work,
rolls up her sleeves, eager to get started.
She senses the worth of her work,
is in no hurry to call it quits for the day.
She’s skilled in the crafts of home and hearth,
diligent in homemaking.
She’s quick to assist anyone in need,
reaches out to help the poor.
She doesn’t worry about her family when it snows;
their winter clothes are all mended and ready to wear.
She makes her own clothing,
and dresses in colorful linens and silks.
Her husband is greatly respected
when he deliberates with the city fathers.
She designs gowns and sells them,
brings the sweaters she knits to the dress shops.
Her clothes are well-made and elegant,
and she always faces tomorrow with a smile.
When she speaks she has something worthwhile to say,
and she always says it kindly.
She keeps an eye on everyone in her household,
and keeps them all busy and productive.
Her children respect and bless her;
her husband joins in with words of praise:
“Many women have done wonderful things,
but you’ve outclassed them all!”
Charm can mislead and beauty soon fades.
The woman to be admired and praised
is the woman who lives in the Fear-of-God.
Give her everything she deserves!
Festoon her life with praises!
Reflection: (Proverbs 31:10-31)
Proverbs has a lot to say about women.
How fitting that the book ends with a picture of a woman of strong character, great wisdom, many skills, and great compassion.
Some people have the mistaken idea that the ideal woman in the Bible is retiring, servile, and entirely domestic.
This woman is an excellent wife and mother.
She is also a manufacturer, importer, manager, realtor, farmer, seamstress, upholsterer, and merchant.
Her strength and dignity do not come from her amazing achievements – they are a result of her reverence for God.
In our society, where physical appearance counts so much, it may surprise us to realize that her appearance is never mentioned.
Her attractiveness comes entirely from her character.
The woman described in this chapter has outstanding abilities.
Her family’s social position is high.
In fact, she may not be one woman at all – she may be a composite portrait of ideal womanhood.
Do not see her as a model to imitate in every detail; your days are not long enough to do everything she does!
See her instead as an inspiration to be all you can be.
We can’t be just like her, but we can learn from her industry, integrity, and resourcefulness.
Reflection: (Proverbs 31:31)
The book of Proverbs begins with the command to fear the Lord (Proverbs 1:7) and ens with the picture of a woman who fulfills this command.
Her qualities are mentioned throughout the book: hard work, fear of God, respect for her spouse, foresight, encouragement, care for others, concern for the poor, wisdom in handling money.
These qualities, when coupled with fear of God, lead to enjoyment, success, honor, and self-worth.
Proverbs is practical for women because it shows how to become wise, make good decisions and live according to God’s ideal.