The Who and Who…
The first we must consider as we look at this verses is, who is it from and who is it to.
Well, if we believe that the book of Proverbs was written by King Solomon, to his son, as wisdom and lessons passed from a father to a son, we could assume that this section might be Solomon telling his son the qualities to look for in a future wife or mother. But that’s not the case. In fact, if we looked at the first verse in this chapter we would see that these verses actually come from a mother to her son. The name we are given is King Lemuel. Now Bible scholars, much wiser than I have discussed who this king Lemuel might be as this is the only time he is ever mentioned in scripture.
Well, I’m not going to participate in that discussion. What I will recognize is that these verses offer great wisdom, passed down from a mother to her son. With that in mind, these aren’t some guys standard that a woman, wife, or mother must live up to. No these are words of instruction for a man to consider as he seeks a woman to be his wife and mother.
If we were to look at these verse as a whole, we find instruction, words of wisdom, caution, and hope. They’re words of protection and warning, given that we might make wise decisions, that we pursue the right kind of woman, and eventually marry the perfect woman for us.
The Measure of a women…
The second thing these verses offer us is a scale in which to recognize the virtues of a good women. For me, I have too often heard these verse referred to by both men and women, teaching that, woman must strive to emulate, even become the kind of woman that these verses describe. You want to talk about pressure, this is pressure. These verses portray a perfect, Godly woman. Are there any ladies who can say, that’s me?
Maybe not if we think of these words as the standard, something that we have to measure up to, something that makes us feel like we’ll never be good enough.
Ah, but I don’t think that is necessarily what we see he. You see, when it’s taught as the standard, we see it as something to live up too, something that we are failing at right now. But I think these verse help us to see all that a woman does. Much like the law of God expose the sin in our lives, these verses reveal all that woman, mothers do day in and day out.
Just scan through these verses again. These verses celebrate what is done, not what must be done. I mean, if you read these verses like,
14 She MUST BE like the merchant ships, bringing her food from afar. 15 She MUST get up while it is still dark; she provides food for her family and portions for her servant girls. 16 She MUST consider a field and buys it; out of her earnings she plants a vineyard. 17 She MUST BE about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks.
Sure in that way, these verses become a set of unsurmountable goals that a woman must work to over come. But that’s not the tone the writer uses. No these verse celebrate the accomplishments of the woman.
And chance are, ladies, you have in many ways you have already mastered these verse.
She’s Our Pride and Joy…
The third thing I think these verses provide for us is a reminder of how blessed we are. Verses 1-3, lead us to that place.
10 [c] A wife of noble character who can find?
She is worth far more than rubies.
11 Her husband has full confidence in her
and lacks nothing of value.
12 She brings him good, not harm,
all the days of her life.
Husband, do you treasure your wives? Would you count them as worth more than all the riches known to man? Don’t you trust them, rely on them, and see them for the joy they bring you?
Yeah, that’s what I’m saying. In many respects, we are already married to the woman described in these verses.
Verses 28 & 29…
28 Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: 29 “Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.”
Kids, when was the last time you stopped and thanked your mom for making dinner, washing your clothes, helping with homework. When was the last time you thanked her for cheering you on from the sidelines, for taking you shopping, or helping you get ready for the party you were having with your friends? When have you said thank you for all the time she gave when you were sick and she cleaned up after you, when you were afraid and she came to your room to comfort you, or when you messed up and they forgave you even when they warned you not to do it before hand.
Truly, they have done noble things, things that surpass those we see on our flat screens. And yet, when do we see, these woman are our favorite mom’s of all time?! When do we stop wishing for a different mom, and say we have the perfect mom!
These verses remind us that we need to stop and sing the praises on our mom, and our wives.
Proverbs 31, serves not only as the standard for the godly woman, but to show us the value of a godly woman.
They may have been great TV mom’s. But TV mom’s don’t have anything on the real thing.
This Mother’s Day, let’s recognize the real mom’s in our lives. The mom’s that we already have. The mom’s who, surpass all other woman. The mom’s God has given to us.