This is the final post on Proverbs 31, and includes a summary of the strengths of the virtuous woman. The final verses of the chapter say:
Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her. Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all. Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised. Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates. Proverbs 31:28-31
Because of the strong character of the virtuous woman, her family calls her blessed and praises her. The word for blessed is “ashar” which literally means “straight, upright” but has several uses. The Amplified Bible uses the terms, happy, prosperous, to be admired. The word is often used as a replacement for happy–it is the basis for the tribal name Asher, because Leah said at Asher’s birth that she was happy because of his birth.
She excels above all women because of her character strengths, and while there is no substance in being favored or physically beautiful, the virtuous woman is praised because she fears God. She has earned merit through her labor and her works are well known by the community (in the gates).
So to summarize the qualities of a virtuous woman, she is:
- A good steward of what her husband provides
- Industrious and productive, keeps herself busy
- Takes care of those in her household, servants and the poor
- A hard worker and good planner
- Is so productive her husband can concentrate on his business matters
- Has strong character, is wise and kind
- Happy, prosperous, praiseworthy
When we look at this in terms of strengths, it seems much easier to strive after these qualities than when taken at face value. Just as Paul said that we press toward the mark of Jesus’ perfection, so the Proverbs 31 woman is something we can strive toward in our role as homemaker.
One can see as well, that being a homemaker is a career. It takes a lot of time, energy, planning, forethought to be successful in it. The wife oversees all the functioning of the household in order to see that her family as a happy, prosperous home. That is certainly why it is said, her price is above rubies. Women who strive to give their husbands a good home will find themselves blessed, admired and praised.
Pamela Parizo © 2017