Proverbs 31:26 (NLT): When she speaks, her words are wise, and she gives instructions with kindness.
Proverbs 31:26 (NKJV): She opens her mouth with wisdom, and on her tongue is the law of kindness.
First of all, let me just say there is probably no other area of this study that I struggle with more than this one. What I am about to share is what God has laid on my heart, and not necessarily anything I have implemented in to my life..yet.
“When She Speaks Her Words Are Wise”
After reading many commentaries, including Matthew Henry and Adam Clarke’s, and prayer, I came to the conclusion that a virtuous woman’s words are wise. Wow! That was a mind blower right there..hehehe. Seriously, a virtuous woman does not waste time on idle chatter and gossip. She speaks with purpose. She is always mindful that her words are a reflection on her husband, her family, but more importantly, her God. She will say nothing to bring shame on her family nor her God.
The bible is filled with verses regarding the tongue. The one that has always stood out the most to me is Matthew 12:34, “You brood of snakes! How could evil men like you speak what is good and right? For whatever is in your heart determines what you say.” (NLT)
Whatever you speak is indicative of what is in your heart. My friend and I often joke, “be careful, your crazy is showing.” The truth of the matter is that when we speak, our heart is showing. I am serious. Think about it for a moment. When was the last time you said something you shouldn’t have. What was going on in your heart? I know that when I took a look at my own life, I found this to be very applicable. Just last night I was speaking on the harsh side to my daughter. I was giving instructions, but I was very short and my tone was harsher than need be. At that moment, I was rushing her to her boyfriend’s house in another town, but in doing so, my other daughter was late for gymnastics (in another town). I hate being late. On top of that, I had to go to yet another town to pick up her homecoming dress (which we would later discover the alterations were not done at all) and would not be able to watch my daughter’s gymnastics. The busy life of a mom, right? Well, on closer inspection, I was speaking out of frustration because my heart was frustrated. I was go, go, go, problem, problem, problem, and I desperately wanted and needed some God time. On top of it all my heart was hurt and frustrated over a completely unrelated issue and it all spilled out of my mouth. Nothing serious, but anything but kind and wise. Ouch!
Our speech can be an indicator of trouble in our hearts. I am sure we have seen our friends or fellow Christians struggle in their walks with the Lord, and often times the first indicator of a problem are their own words. I encourage your all to check yourself. If you find yourself speaking in ways that you ought not, take a closer look at your heart and see what is going on.
Remember, a virtuous woman can speak words of wisdom because she is filled with his word. Yah, I like that one. 🙂 Spending time with God and reading the Bible are an absolute necessity if we are to be wise.
Now, I didn’t really want to go here, but I feel I must. Please notice it says “WHEN she speaks.” Matthew Henry’s commentary says, “she opens her mouth with wisdom when she does speak.” I venture to say that as virtuous women, we not only have to be careful with what we say, but how much we say. I know that doesn’t sit well with many of us. To be honest, I don’t like many aspects of it myself, but I honestly believe this interpretation may be true.
The men are to lead the household, but in most households today, the women seem to be doing all the leading. Why? My personal opinion is that men are tired of fighting bossy, opinionated, and controlling women. I have often said that I cannot follow someone who is not leading. My husband then says, “ I am tired of fighting to get a word in edge wise to lead, and I can’t lead someone who doesn’t want to be led.”
I will admit that I am one who gives my opinions a lot. I do get mad when my husband contradicts me or does something in direct contrast to something I have suggested. I think the whole “when” part of this verse is trying to caution us women to not be so quick with our opinions so that men would be more apt to listen when we do speak. When we give our opinions about everything, men often quit listening; however, if we give our opinions/advise/suggestions less often and on issues that are important to us, I believe our men would be more likely to listen.
I know this may seem extreme to some, but I want you to take a quick look at some popular Bible stories. Read the stories on Adam and Eve, Abraham and Sarah, Rebekah and her son Jacob.
Adam and Eve- In this story, Eve convinced Adam to eat the forbidden fruit, or rather she was the one who gave Adam the fruit to eat.
Abraham and Sarah-God told Abraham he would make him the father of many nations. After years of waiting and old age, Sarah got tired of waiting and talked Abraham into taking her servant as his wife and she would provide him a child.
Rebekah and Jacob-Isaac and Rebekah had two sons. Isaac loved his first son more than his second son, Jacob, while Rebekah preferred Jacob. As custom, the first son was to receive the birth right, but Rebekah convinced her son Jacob to deceive Isaac into giving the birth right to him instead. Rebekah was actually instrumental in coming up with the plan.
In all these stories, the women were the ones who convinced the men to do something that they may not have done otherwise. And in all three cases, disaster struck. My point is that as women, we have great influence over the men in our lives and, as Godly women, we must be careful what we do with said power.
“She Gives Instructions with Kindness”
The scripture that went to my head and heart immediately was Proverbs 15:1, “A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.”
Oh this verse is so true. How many times have you seen this with your very own eyes. When correction or instruction comes from a place of kindness it is much better received. Why? Often it is because there is no malice or ill intent behind it. The person trusts that the one giving correction or instruction has their best interest at heart and is open to their advise. On the contrary, when correction our instruction is done so through an attack or insult, defenses go up immediately and nothing said or done is going to register because they do not trust the motives behind it. Furthermore, it often causes hurt and resentment towards God which pushes the person further and further away.
Remember, out of the mouth the heart speaks. Therefore, if you have a kind heart, love others, and love the Lord, then your words will also. If we are walking in the ways of the Lord, then we will have the same characteristics of Christ. Christ was wise. Christ was kind. It is true he got angry, but if you look, he got angry with the Pharisees because they were making a mockery of the Temple and driving people away from God. Unfortunately, there have been times I have acted like a Pharisee and my words have hurt the cause of Christ. Lord, forgive me and help me to more mindful of my words.
I know there is so much more we could cover, but I am out of time. Please feel free to share what you got from the verse today. After all, God speaks to us all differently. I know God does not change, but we do. As we grow, God reveals more and more to us. I would love to hear what God is telling you!
Until next time, stay safe and God bless,