**Who can find a virtuous woman? For her price is far above rubies.** Proverbs 31:10
What does being virtuous mean to you? By your definition, would someone call you a virtuous woman?
Proverbs 31 is a tough chapter for all women. Many times over the years, I have listened as women all over the world react with despair to this list of virtuous qualities. Some look at each verse as individual characteristics and consider themselves virtuous if they can exhibit just one, then pretend the others don’t exist. Others look at all the verses and are overwhelmed with trying to live out all of them at once, today!
Let’s start out by giving ourselves a break. No where in scripture do we see that God demands every detail of his word be manifested in every person every minute. None of the men depicted in the Old Testament manifest every detail of Proverbs 31 or the Mosaic Law.
Abraham told white lies and slept with the maid to try and find a short cut to God’s promises.
Noah got drunk and did something unseemly.
Isaac, well, Isaac was mostly like his father and had no real distinction at all.
Jacob was a usurper and a deceiver.
Moses was a murderer.
David was an adulterer and a murderer. ………..and on and on….
So, why do we women put so much pressure on ourselves to live out every detail of one chapter of the Bible? Why do we think that this chapter tells us how to be perfect?
Before we go further, let’s all do an assignment.
Forget trying to be the perfect Proverbs 31 woman!!!!!!!
This chapter is about how Solomon SAW his mother and what he remembered of her teachings. It doesn’t necessarily mean she DID ALL these things. Have we never taught our children what to do out of our mistakes and not our victories? Maybe his mother did do each one at some time, but not all of them all at once. Or maybe it was her way of trying to get Solomon to be more selective about his wives and to stop using beauty as the only criteria to choose a wife.
So, lesson 1 on the Proverbs 31 woman. ….take a breath…forgive yourself…and now approach the next few days with an open mind. I think each of us will get more out of the text if we look at it with fresh eyes.
We should keep reminding ourselves that God is RICH IN MERCY!!! He does not have a scoreboard for this chapter. He hasn’t turned his back on any of us and He is nowhere near as hard on us as we are on ourselves.
So, stick with me over the next few days and let’s see if we can all find a healthy way of becoming a virtuous woman.