Some Christian women despise the description found in Proverbs 31:10-31. If you’re not familiar with her, the Proverbs 31 woman works hard … and it seems like she does everything exceptionally well. In an age of comparison, it can be easy to feel inadequate when you read about a biblical superwoman.
I challenge you to take a different approach, though.
Instead of focusing on how you can never measure up to her example, look at her life as an excellent biblical description of what women can do. Women can work hard and succeed. Women can be excellent wives and mothers. Women can act as the very strong and capable backbones of their families.
I’m thankful that the Proverbs 31 woman is included in the Bible because it gives specific inspiration for women. Instead of only wondering what homemakers, wives and mothers could or should do, this passage of Scripture details it for us.
An Important Perspective
As you read Proverbs 31, it’s important to remember that it’s a portrait of a woman’s lifetime, not a spotlight on a particular season.
It’s also important to remember that she didn’t do everything alone. She had household help. That gave her a tremendous advantage – imagine all you could accomplish if you had maidens to help around your home.
If you feel like you can’t possibly do all she did, take a deep breath. She didn’t do it all at once – or all by herself. Figure out what is necessary right now in your current season of life, and concentrate on that. As time and energy allows, take on new tasks when given the opportunity and drop others.
Just as it’s vital to remember that as we typically see the Photoshopped and absolute best versions of people’s lives on Facebook, Proverbs 31 highlights a woman’s triumphs. She would’ve faced trials. She would’ve had bad days. She would’ve faced seasons of her life where work or family brought overwhelming challenges.
Also remember that someone else (Lemuel) wrote this about her – she didn’t say the words about herself. While keeping this in mind, remember that far too often we are too hard on ourselves. How do other people view your successes? How would someone else describe your strengths?
We get to see her greatest hits … and they are great. But just like a successful band has greatest hits, they also have flops – and songs that are just so-so. Similarly, the Proverbs 31 woman wasn’t the image of perfection 24 hours a day, seven days a week. She was a normal woman, just like you and me.
We can glean much wisdom and inspiration from the Proverbs 31 woman, but we don’t have to compare ourselves to her – unless we only remember to focus on our own very best triumphs.
What to expect
I’m a fan of the Proverbs 31 woman, because she gives me something to work toward. If I don’t see ideal examples of godly women in everyday life, I can simply look to my Bible.
It’s important to note that I have not attained a life like the Proverbs 31 woman. As I’ve written this book, I’ve found many areas I need to work on in my own life. I’m still a work in progress, and am challenged right along with you.
Because women can learn so much from her example, we’re going to explore her example verse by verse throughout the next 15 chapters.
At the end of each chapter, take time to pray and contemplate the questions in each Things to Think About section. If at all possible, journal your responses and figure out practical ways you can start making helpful changes in your life – because as James 1:22 instructs, “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.”
Then, as you prayerfully and intentionally start to apply the truths of Proverbs 31 to your own life, watch your contentment and blessings grow!
Buy a copy of Becoming a Modern-Day Proverbs 31 Woman now!