Epilogue: The Wife of Noble Character
10 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.
25 She is clothed with strength and dignity;
she can laugh at the days to come.
26 She speaks with wisdom,
and faithful instruction is on her tongue.
27 She watches over the affairs of her household
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
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.”
30 Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;
but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
31 Honor her for all that her hands have done,
and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.
More often than not I have often wondered about this chapter. I know I am not the only one, many women narratives tend to come to this instructive: how do I become her? If you have spent much time in the Christian community, you have undoubtedly heard of her: the Proverbs 31 woman. What Christian woman wouldn’t want to be just like her? She is perfect, ideal and what men seek for in a wife. She is the blueprint, and most women have this portion of the scripture framed and hanging to the wall-my mom included.
I have often asked myself how she relates to me this proverbs woman. There are four verses in this narration that mention the word “husband” 4 times and guess what, I do not have one, and I am not quite sure I need one. Does that mean I cannot be a proverbs 31 on my own? Certainly not. The Proverbs 31 woman has received a lot of criticism lately because of the way this scripture is tossed around by self-serving people. But if you look closely (and ignore the parts that mention husbands) you will find that a Proverbs 31 woman is actually in line with the equality we are fighting for as women.
She works hard; she doesn’t live off handouts, she is capable and competent. Waking up early could be interpreted as a 9-5 or simply getting your paper hey I don’t know this is for all the women breaking the glass ceiling and getting degrees and all those jobs which were formerly known to be only for men. Yes you, you are a Proverbs 31 woman.
She is choosing to give and to serve. That is what we are striving for right? I have seen people criticising feminists who are happily married or in love like it’s a conflict of interest or something. No, we are not at war with men we are fighting for equal opportunities with them. The opportunity to choose to be or not to be, she makes the conscious decision to bring good not harm. So if you choose to love and make sacrifices for people you love, guess what? You are a Proverbs 31 woman.