A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies… She selects wool and flax and works with eager hands…She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks. She sees that her trading is profitable, and her lamp does not go out at night…She opens her arms to the poor and extends er hands to the needy…She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come. She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue…Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
There are many places sprinkled in the Bible that speaks to the topic of womanhood and a woman’s relationship with her husband. This passage in Proverbs is one of the most detailed descriptions of what a woman of noble character looks like. It starts off by emphasizing how worthy and important it is for a woman to have good character, both for her husband’s sake and for the Lord’s glory. Then it highlights virtues through giving several examples: hardworking, physical strength, servant-minded, caring for family, savvy investor, gracious to the poor, giving wisdom to those around her, God-fearing.
I don’t know about you, but I was honestly surprised when I derived this list of virtues. Normally, you would think of a woman’s place in the Bible, especially the Old Testament, to be subservient to men and to be more of a backstage kind of role. I had assumed that the definition of a godly woman was to be faithful and obey your husband, and the rest seemed to fade into the background. But this passage actually celebrates the strength of a noble woman. Everything from having strong arms literally, be business savvy at making profits for the family trade and being a source of wise words to others, are mind-blowing to me.
Yet, it’s all so beautiful. A beautiful image of a woman rooted in the Lord, a woman who takes pride in caring for the various needs of her family, and frankly, a woman who is fabulous at doing it!
All the more, my mind is churning with so many practical implications for my life from this passage! First of all, I need to hit the gym more and literally pump some iron to strengthen my puny arms. I should waste less time on Facebook and Pinterest and be more eager in my medical studies. I can learn a bit of finance and investing to prepare for the distant future when I’ll have a positive income. But most importantly, I need to grow closer to God and yearn for His wisdom in my life. After all, He is the source of all love, strength and wisdom.