The Proverbs 31 passage about the virtuous woman is always brandished as a standard for Christian women, single and married alike. It's filled with so many wonderful characteristics for women to aspire to and for men to hold women to... . One question keeps getting asked over and over again, is the proverbs 31 woman a realistic role model? If you haven't yet done so, make sure you read the passage in Proverbs 31:10-31 which theologians believe is based on teachings from Solomon's mother. Now, regardless of who inspired these writings, we must be careful about how we interpret and apply what's written. I'm certain this passage wasn't meant to make women feel inadequate about themselves but rather inspire women to live virtuous lives. God created us all to be unique and even though innately, men and women share general characteristics, we're still very different.
When taken verse by verse, the virtuous woman seems to be on the go 24/7 and seems not to have any time for herself. In a world where self-care and the importance of prioritising down-time is increasing, there seems to be a little bit of a contrast between the life of the Proverbs 31 woman and the 21st century woman. In this post, I'd like to highlight the key qualities and attributes of the virtuous woman. I believe we have the qualities of the woman described in Proverbs 31 but may not have the same level of activity, which is ok 😁. Here are a few of those qualities:
Resourceful: it's very clear to see that this woman knows what she needs and knows how to get what she needs. In the 21st century, this attribute can be seen in the mothers working to provide for their families, the women forging a path for themselves in their careers and breaking glass ceilings and the women who overcome the most intense adversities, shake off the shackles and just keep on going.
Tenacious: in addition to overcoming adversities, this woman just does not give up. Nothing can stop her and her drive and ambition will allow her to do things and go places others do not have the drive to even dream of! She has dreams and visions and will hold firmly on to them even in the fiercest storms.
Faithful: a woman who is faithful trusts in God with all her heart and everything that she has. Her faith does not waiver. Even when things around her look uncertain, her certainty comes from her faith in God, not man. She knows her God and He knows her too. He relies on her to carry out her duties and He relies on her to be obedient to His word.
Kind: a virtuous woman is kind to those around her. She cares deeply about the people around her and will always reach out to help those who are in need. Her kindness and compassion means she is generous with her time, energy and resources and so will always be a blessing to others.
Organised and prepared: a woman of virtue will know exactly what she wants to achieve and makes plans to achieve her goals and dreams. She thinks about the future and finds opportunities to prepare for a variety of situation. She is conscientious and does not act haphazardly.
Full of wisdom: a virtuous woman is a wise woman. I'm not talking worldly wisdom. I'm talking about wisdom that comes from closely walking with God. She will make great decisions and investments. Her wisdom will benefit those around her and her words will be valuable to anyone who listens to them. They drip with wisdom.
Fears the Lord: a virtuous woman knows the Lord is her saviour and so fears (reverences) Him. She lives according to His word and she has a close relationship with Him. The Lord is her Father and she seeks His counsel in everything she does. This is evident to all around her. Because she is obedient to the Lord, she is a woman of integrity. She can be trusted and should be trusted.
Finally, a woman who possesses all the above qualities KNOWS her worth and will not sell herself short. She will not allow anyone to convince her she is anything less than FABULOUS! If you're reading this, know that God has created you to be a virtuous woman. The only way to be His definition of virtuous is to trust in Him and follow His lead. He'll never lead you wrong.