I used to think that Proverbs 31 was all about the perfect woman. When I first read the scripture I thought to myself “yeah right.” This lady is making clothes, working in the field, praying for hours, making breakfast, and who knows what else. I’ll surely never be able to amount to any of that. But I think it was listening to a sermon from Elevation Church where this thought came out. “Proverbs 31 is not about being the perfect woman, but a woman transformed by grace.”
I find myself often thanking God for his grace. I mean it’s that thing we can never earn but that he gives to us constantly. Each moment we are saved by his grace and here in Proverbs 31, we are hearing about how grace literally can transform us into who we are called to be. See if we focus on the grace on the Proverbs 31 woman’s life, we no longer see her as perfection we can never obtain, but we begin to see her characteristics refined by grace.
- She was resourceful … She made her own money that she puts it right back into her home and garden instead of blowing it on unnecessary luxuries.
- She was prepared … She gets up while it’s still night. She’s preparing for her day well advance. She knows that this is her quiet time before the kids and husband are up where she can pray, iron clothes, whatever it is.
- She was a hard worker … Not once does it say she complained about all she had to do. She just did what she had to and with a good spirit.
- She was generous … She opens her arms to the poor and extends her hand to the needy. She didn’t keep all she had to herself, she was open, willing to share and be a light to others.
- She was faithful … She didn’t have to fear because she knew that God was her strength. She didn’t let fear keep her from what she was supposed to do. Walking by faith and not by sight.
- She was wise … She kept her household in order and prayed up. She wasn’t content in idleness. She knew how to prioritize.
When you start to break out the characteristics of the Proverbs 31 woman, doesn’t it sound like some women you already know? She is not this farfetched idea of a woman but a lot of what some of us have seen in our lives. God’s grace makes the seemingly impossible, possible. And sure we may have some things to work on. Being more patient or more generous or what have you, but the Proverbs 31 woman is in every single one of us. We don’t have to be intimidated by her.
One of the most important parts of this scripture to me is this “Charm and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the lord is to be praised.” Ultimately no matter what house you live in, car you drive, or accolades you have achieved, your faithfulness to the Lord is what will really make you the “imperfect, perfect woman.”