” A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies.” – Proverbs 31:10
Per karat, rubies are the most expensive colored stone. Corundum, the mineral which rubies are made from, is one of the hardest substances known to man. It is second in hardness only to diamonds. Natural-occurring rubies are extremely rare, hence their value. Now, why would the worth of a wife of noble character be compared to the worth of a ruby? Well, she’s rare. She’s not easily found, just like a ruby in it’s natural state. She tough and strong, comparable to the mineral Corundum. Her strength, rarity, work ethic, servant’s heart, love for her family, and her love for God make her breathtakingly beautiful, reflecting the same brilliance as a freshly polished ruby.
” Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value. She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life.” – Proverbs 31:11, 12
These two verses pretty much speak for themselves. Her husband is sure of her and trusts her, and everything that he values, he does not lack. Verse twelve simply means that she makes him a better man by challenging him, encouraging him, being submissive, not in a controlling way but out of respect for his place as her husband and the head of their household, and loving him.
” She selects wool and flax and works with eager hands. She is like the merchant ships, bringing her food from afar. She gets up while it is still night; she provides food for her family and portions for her female servants. She considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings she plants a vineyard. She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks. She sees that her trading is profitable, and her lamp does not go out at night. In her hand she holds the distaff and grasps the spindle with her fingers.” – Proverbs 31:13-19
These six verses deal directly with the work ethic of the wife of noble character. She enjoys the work she does, whether it’s gardening, cooking, cleaning, spinning wool, or selling the things she has grown and made. Now, some of you may be thinking this is outdated and does not apply to today, but that’s not correct. We should work hard, cook, clean, make sure our family has what they need. Some people think these tasks are only attainable if you are housewife, but that’s not true. The wife described in these Scriptures had a job. The earnings were described as “hers.” She didn’t, however, allow her job to get in the way of providing for her family. She also didn’t procrastinate. Even if she was tired from a long day at work, she still completed the work that needed to be done. As we mentioned before, she is strong, just like the mineral Corundum. You have to be strong to be a wife. Marriage isn’t for the weak!!!!!
” She opens her arms to the poor and extends her hands to the needy. When it snows, she has no fear for her household; for all of them are clothed in scarlet. She makes coverings for her bed; she is clothed in fine linen and purple.” – Proverbs 31: 20-22
She’s gives to those in need without a thought of, “when will they pay me back?” or “I will do this for you, but I need you to this for me.” To give selflessly without expecting anything in return, especially today, is a gift. My parents taught me long ago that giving and expecting nothing in return is one of the greatest attributes a person can possess. People today are always more worried about what’s in it for them, and for this reason, they miss the blessing. By describing her family as being clothed in scarlet simply means that the color “scarlet” retains heat, so when it is cold, she makes certain that they are warm. The wife being clothed in fine linen and purple draws attention to the fact that she dressed respectably. She was not concerned with dressing in clothes that she could not afford, nor did she wear clothes that were tattered and torn. There is absolutely nothing wrong with owning or admiring fine things, but if you can’t afford them or your family is suffering because of your uncontrollable desires to attain these things, it is a problem.
“Her husband is respected at the city gate, where he takes his seat among the elders of the land. She makes fine linen garments and sells them, and supplies the merchants with sashes.” Proverbs 31:23, 24
Finally, we get a look at the husband. He’s a respectable man who was clearly good at his occupation as well as powerful, but despite his place in life, he didn’t look down on her for making her own money. He, in turn, encouraged her. Yes, he still had rule over her as the head of the household, but he had great respect and admiration for his wife and how hard she worked, because a wife’s work doesn’t end when she clocks out. There’s always more to be done.
“She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come. She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue. She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her. ‘Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.’ Charm is deceptive and beauty is fleeting, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. Honor her for all that her hands have done, and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.”- Proverbs 31:25-31
This last stretch of the chapter is my favorite. It’s like the closing paragraph of a paper. It summarizes her, and we get a closer look at what her family and friends think of her. We see that word, “strength” again. This time we are looking at her inward strength rather than her physical, muscular strength. She is not worried about the future. She trusts God fully, and she’s not oblivious to the fact that there will indeed be difficult days ahead. Rather than worrying about them, she chooses laughter. She’s wise. Wisdom is not being familiar with a bunch of facts. Wisdom is being able to make the right decisions during difficult times. Wisdom is being an encouragement when your husband loses his job. Wisdom is choosing to take as long as it requires to remodel your home, because that’s what is best for your budget and your family. Wisdom is being real with your children and allowing them to learn from your mistakes and being a listening ear for them in their time of need. Wisdom is choosing to say nothing when you’re being attacked, falsely accused, lied about, gossiped about, or misunderstood. Giving faithful instruction is knowing that what is being said is true. Again, we get a glimpse at the fact that she doesn’t just lie around at home. If there is something to be done, she is quick to accomplish it. Her children and husband adore her. Have you ever asked your husband and children what they think of you? You should. Her husband compliments her, with what is, in my opinion, the greatest compliment ever. He tells her that she’s better than any woman in the entire world. He values her. We also see that if a man chooses a woman based solely on her beauty, he’s mistaken. That outward beauty passes away. Inward beauty lasts a lifetime, and woman that loves God is certainly filled with inward beauty. The last verse is a command to the husbands that possess wives of noble character. They are told to honor her for her work. Tell her, “thank you.” Make a big deal about your wife, because she certainly deserves it. The chapter ends with a look at how her friends respect her for how hard she works and the person that she is. What a great way to be thought of.
Many of you know that I prayed for eight years that God would send me a husband. I had to wait quite a while for him. I told myself that I was ready to get married and would be an excellent wife at the age of 22, but I was wrong. I may have been ready for the Nicholas Sparks version of marriage, which, by the way, doesn’t exist. Sorry to burst your bubble for all of you dreamers out there! There is no making out in the rain and making wild, passionate love for 2 days straight! WAKE UP! That only happens in the movies. I once heard it best described as, “a false perception of reality.” God had to prepare me for marriage. He had to show me that I could stand on my own. I had to work, provide for my household, learn to cook, clean, work in the yard, pay bills, make wise choices,etc….. God was preparing me for how much work marriage is! You can’t call in sick or take a day off from marriage. If you do that, it will fail! You must have goals everyday, and you must achieve them, or your family will suffer, and if they suffer, then you have not done your job. Being a wife and mother are the most selfless jobs in the world. There will be days that you do not sit down until you go to bed. If you are accustomed to everything always going your way or people always being at your beck and call, marriage and motherhood is going to be a rude awakening for you. I strongly suggest that you pray for God to prepare you to be a wife and mother. It’s not for the faint of heart, that’s for sure. After I heard a sermon on Proverbs 31, I knew that I was being called to be this woman, and although it took a long time to get there, I was finally ready to be a wife of noble character. A Proverbs 31 woman was on my husband’s list of “must haves” in a wife, and tonight after I had come home from church and pressure washed the house, sidewalk, driveway, and cooked a big supper, he said, “What are you going to do tonight?” I replied, “blog,” Adam said, ” about what?” I told him, “A Proverbs 31 woman,” and he said, “well, I’m looking at the greatest of them all.” I’m thankful for 8 years of waiting, and I’m thankful that my husband and my children place my worth as far more than rubies, and I serve a God that values me just the same, and their opinions of me are truly all that matter. Thank you for reading. Next week’s blog will be dedicated entirely to my boys! On the same day that Weston turns 3, Banks will be going to his school’s homecoming dance. I certainly do love my man clan!