I am so relived to have finally completed this study. If you have been following this study from the beginning, you could probably see that I had no idea where this was going to go. I honestly thought it would be a five part series; I didn’t realize it would take us over 3 months. But I count it all good as I have personally grown during the course of this study.
Before I began, I was not sure if it was possible to be a Proverbs 31 woman in today’s world. I assumed these verses were outdated for our culture and therefore, no longer applied. I was wrong. It is not only possible, but God is still calling us to become virtuous women.
One of the first things I learned is that a working woman is not a new concept. Proverbs 31 clearly shows that women have always worked (makes her own goods and sell them; buys real estate; plants a vineyard). Some of us have bought into the lie that a good virtuous woman does not work outside the home, but that is simply not true. We can work outside our home, but we must be careful that our work does not become our priority or override the needs of our families.
The second thing that really stood out to me was that no only should I be taking care of my family, but I should enjoy doing so. I spend too many years looking at some of my family obligations as just that obligations or chores. I failed to see the good my efforts were bringing to my family and failed to see I was pleasing the Lord by doing so. You see, I bought into the lie that “women’s work” was demeaning. I bought into the lie that I should be living to please myself. I have adapted a new household chore system in my house the last month and I am loving it (posted previously in series). I feel accomplished; my house is a lot cleaner every day; and my children are taking on new responsibilities. [I would also like to point out that I did not add chores for my husband, which is a big step for me. ] At the end of the day I feel good about myself as a wife and a mother and I believe it is because I know I am trying to do the right things. Before I made these changes, I used to feel guilty at the end of the day because I knew I had not done my best and I knew there were needs not met. I no longer have those regrets. Yeah!
Another issue God brought to my attention was the way I treated and viewed my husband. I hate to admit it, but I was very selfish in my marriage. I wanted my husband to do, do, do for me, but I didn’t spend a whole lot of time doing anything for him. I kept telling myself that when he fulfilled my needs then I would be able to fulfill his. I failed to see and accept God’s role for me in my marriage. You see, Ladies, we are designed to be our husbands helper. It clearly says so in Genesis. We were designed to come alongside and support our husbands. I failed miserably in this department. I was often my husband worst critic instead of his biggest supporter. Don’t get me wrong, I loved and love my husband, I was just terribly selfish.
I am not yet the women I want to be or the woman God has called me to be, but I am a lot closer now then I was before I did this study. It took me a long time to complete this study because I was learning as I was writing and I did not want to move on until I truly grasped what God was trying to show me. I am not trying to pat myself on the back, I am trying to encourage you all to step up. I want to encourage you all to accept God’s design for our marriages because if I learned anything in the last few months it is this: it works so much better when we do it God’s way than our way. I have to make a conscience effort every day to apply the things of Proverbs 31. Every day I have to ask God, “help me love my husband today the way he needs to be loved.” I am honestly happier than I ever have been in my marriage and that is saying something because we are in a very,very rough spot right now. I am happier because I know I am in the will of God. I am happier because when I am in the will of God I am content and I have a peace that surpasses all understanding (truly I do).
God has changed my heart. God is helping me put my husbands needs before my own. It is not easy. There are many, many days I want to quit. I often want to quit because my husband is not behaving the way I think he should. I want to quit when my husband hurts my feelings. I want to quit about every day, but I keep going because in the long run I am not doing this for my husband or my family, I am doing this because I love God and I want to follow him.
It is my prayer that you walk away from this study at least believing that you are called to be a virtuous woman. After all, you must believe it before you can start walking it. If you already believe it, it is my prayer that you start applying what you have learned. Remember, Rome wasn’t built in a day and it may take some time, but don’t give up.
Have a great weekend and God bless,