Marriage is hard. But it’s also good. And as you study Proverbs 31, you can learn how to become an excellent wife.
Writing about an becoming an excellent wife makes me uncomfortable – because I know how I fall short in my quest for excellence. So today, please don’t get the impression that I know all about marriage or am a splendid wife of excellence day after day and year after year. It’s nothing I’ve achieved, but something I continue to strive for.
I’m simply here to point out what Proverbs 31 says about an excellent wife. From verses 10-12:
An excellent wife, who can find? For her worth is far above jewels. The heart of her husband trusts in her, and he will have no lack of gain. She does him good and not evil all the days of her life.
Rare and priceless
Think for a moment about jewels. What’s true about them? They’re rare, beautiful, and valuable, right? Often they’re called precious.
All of the descriptions of a jewel also pertain to an excellent wife.
Excellent wives are hard to find. And if you’re longing to become an excellent wife, excellence does not come easily.
An excellent wife is a beautiful thing. She may not always be physically beautiful, in a superficial supermodel sense, but her spirit and wifeliness is beautiful.
Proverbs tells us that an excellent wife’s worth is far above jewels – she’s priceless! And she’s precious.
Trustworthy and good
An excellent wife spends each day doing good to and for her husband. As she does this, her husband knows he can trust her. There’s no doubt that his life is better because of her.
What does this kind of marriage look like today?
Today’s Proverbs 31 wife is trustworthy – there’s no need to doubt her character. She is and will be faithful. She is and will be honest. She will work hard for her family.
As she does her husband good and not evil, she may:
- Speak well of him in and out of his presence.
- Care for his physical needs – whether it’s feeding him healthy foods, caring for him when he’s not feeling well, creating a haven for him, or ministering to him in the bedroom.
- Steward his provisions in a responsible way. How does she help his money and food go further? Is she careful when spending her husband’s hard-earned money?
- Make time for him.
- Thank him for the big and little things he does.
- Think about what she’s about to do or say. If there’s any doubt that she’s doing her husband good, then she needs to reevaluate her situation.
Notice that we don’t know much about the Proverbs 31 husband. We don’t know if he necessarily deserved the treatment his wife gave him. But it didn’t matter. Regardless of how she was treated, the Proverbs 31 woman pursued excellence. And in the process she became a wife after God’s own heart.
While the words in these verses were written thousands of years ago, they still hold true today.
A wife – as her husband’s helper and completer – should be trustworthy. And she should seek to do her husband good.
- Even if they’re in disagreement.
- Even if he doesn’t seem to deserve such honorable treatment.
- Even if they’re apart on unavoidable (or even avoidable) separate schedules.
- Even if she’s tempted to seek the friendly, seemingly innocent company of another man.
- Even if she needs to rein in her spending.
- Even if she’s tempted to hold a grudge.
Doing good mirrors the Golden Rule – by loving your husband as you love yourself, and acting upon that love, you can do good.
- You’ll feel compelled to do sweet things to demonstrate your love.
- You’ll be ready to take care of him even when you’re weary – whether it’s grocery shopping after a long day of work, fixing his meal when he has a bad day, or holding your tongue when he’s sick and feeling miserable.
- And you’ll be eager to speak his praises with others.
The goal of an excellent wife is to get to the end of your life faithfully married, knowing you did everything in your power to do good to your husband. Of course you’ll have bad days. Of course you’ll have rough spots in your marriage throughout the years. But when you look at your marriage as a whole, those spots will be little blemishes – not the center of your matrimony.
At that point, you’ll be able to rest in the fact that you were trustworthy. You’ll know you were helpful and good. You’ll know that in your marriage, you were an excellent wife.
Much more to explore
Because women can learn so much from the example of the Proverbs 31 woman, I’ve explored Proverbs 31 verse by verse in my eBook Becoming a Modern-Day Proverbs 31 Woman. In 15 chapters, you’ll find encouragement, inspiration, and challenges to apply to your own life.
What do you do to help yourself become an excellent wife?
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