Today began Day 3 of my personal study on Proverbs 31. (You can see Day 1 here: http://wp.me/pSiIC-4g and Day 2 here: http://wp.me/pSiIC-4Y ) On Day 1 I discovered that the Bible has laid out exactly what a good wife of noble character needs to do. Now there weren’t many but each one was so loaded in itself that I need more days to go into each verse in depth. On Day 2 I learned about verses 10-15, so today I’m moving onto verses 16-20.
Proverbs 31: 16-20 – Continued Epilogue: The Wife of Noble Character
V 16 – “She considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings she plants a vineyard.”
- In the notes is says that “she shows good judgement – unlike the sluggard, whose vineyard is overgrown with thorns and weeds” Then it says to see Proverbs 24: 30-31. “I went past the field of a sluggard, past the vineyard of the man who lacks judgement: thorns had come up everywhere, the ground was covered with weeds, and the stone walls were in ruins.”
- So how does this pertain to me? I cant really buy a field somewhere and plant a vineyard, but I can be wise about what investments I do make. I am a Discovery Toys and Scentsy Consultant and both of those are investments that I chose to help our family financially. They both required consideration and judgement. With each I save a certain amount and then I put invest a little more into each. This is my vineyard to my fields.
- What about my duties and investments as a mom and a wife? Am I constantly considering what parts of our lives are good investments that will better our family; am I showing good judgement? This is where I need to focus my prayer this week.
V17 – “She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks.”
- In my Bible I was first sent to Proverbs 10:4. “Lazy hands make a man poor, but diligent ones bring a man wealth.” So if I sit around my house lazily I can cause us to become poor? Well sure that makes sense. If I’m not upholding my jobs at home then my husband may have to do them when he gets home. That can take away from his time to do his jobs at work, or can deter his focus so that he wont do as good of a job. Not to mention that if I don’t do laundry as I am supposed to he wont have clothes for work, and if I don’t do dishes or cook, then he wont be fed well and wont have energy for his work. I need to be able to do my jobs appropriately in order for him to do his appropriately and for our family to function as its intended.
- The notes here stated that, “Most of proverbs praises diligence and the profit it brings and condemns laziness as a cause of hunger and poverty.
V18 – “She sees her trading is profitable and her lamp doesn’t go out at night”
- In the bottom notes my Bible stated that Wisdom is more profitable than silver. I wasn’t sure what this meant pertaining to the verse until I started looking into the second part of the verse. There was no information directly on it so I flipped to the concordance in the back of my Bible.
- Then I remembered “Lamp doesn’t go out at night” where had I heard that before? Hopefully id find it the concordance. Thankfully I did! Matthew 25:1-13 with The Parable of the T:en Virgins “At that time the kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish and five were wise. The foolish ones took their lamps but did not take any oil with them. The wise, however, took oil in jars along with their lamps. . .” So a noble wife is a wise woman who is one who is prepared and knowledgeable in the Lord. She lets her lamp for him shine and doesn’t let it go out for she doesn’t know when he’ll return again.
- In the concordance it also refers to lamp many times and its significance: 2 Samuel 22:29 “You are my lamp O Lord”, Psalms 18:28 “You, O Lord, keep my lamp burning”, Psalms 119:105 “Your Word is a lamp unto my feet”, Proverbs 6:23 “For these commands are a lamp” and the list goes on and on. Suddenly the verse is clear to me: The Lord and the Word are to be my lamp and I am not to let it go out.
V19 – “In her hand she holds the distaff and grasps the spindle with her fingers”
- In the notes it only says that Spinning Thread was women’s work. So am I fulfilling my jobs that are considered women’s work? Women’s work: cooking, cleaning, being submissive to my husband, bearing children, making clothing, curtains, etc (the list goes on). Ya OK that sounds sexist, but allowing that to bother me is allowing my pride to step in and my desire to be a wife of noble character, as described in Proverbs 31, to go out. So I need to take some extra time this week to also pray about what jobs ARE considered women’s work and ensure that I am doing what I need to be doing.
V20 – “She opens her arms to the poor and extends her hands to the needy.”
- In my Bible I’m sent to Deuteronomy 15:11 “There will always be poor people in the land, therefor I command you to be openhanded towards your brother and needy in your land” This makes sense after all is not everything in the land the Lord’s? Aren’t we just their current stewards? Nothing truly BELONGS to me, so why should I selfishly hoard it when another may need it?
- In the notes below Deuteronomy it states BOTH your brothers AND other needy. So we are to open our arms to the poor and extend our hands to the needy of both our “brothers” in Christ and the Lost, to all people in need. I think is the most important for me to remember.
- In Proverbs 14:21 it states “… but blessed is he who is kind to the needy”
- In Proverbs 22:9 it states similarly “A generous man will be blessed, for he shares his food with the poor.” and in Job 31: 16-22 it talks about the wrath of God for those who are able but did not share the desires of the poor.
- So we are to share food, lend money, defend rights, etc. but all in the name of the Lord in ways that Glorify and Honor God. Sometimes as we come across needy it scares us, maybe the way they look or smell or act, but truth is God does not care about all that, he wants us to help them. As a woman I am more inclined to be scared off or deterred by these things than my husband would. As a wife of noble character I need to stay in prayer that I will not let those things get in my way, but to be the woman described who extender her arms to the poor and hand to the needy.
Again so much learned today and a lot for me to pray about this week and discover. I know that I need to have good judgement, I need to be hard working, I need to keep in the Word and my faith in the Lord, I need to fulfill my jobs as a woman and I need to be willing to help anyone and everyone in need that I can. At first thought I’m sure we’d all like to say that we already do all these things, I know I would, but truth is that I don’t and I need to adjust accordingly. Change in general is scary but I know that with God I can do anything. I can be the woman He has called me to be.