(People have asked me to write about the Proverbs 31 woman. I’m certain this isn’t what they were expecting when they asked me, but I’ve been thinking about her a lot lately and thought I’d share my random and biased thoughts…)
A Proverbs 31 Woman. The woman written about in the 31st chapter of Proverbs in the Bible isn’t all that and a bag of chips. Don’t get me wrong, she’s one amazing woman! In fact, the chapter tells us she’s priceless! Her husband thinks she rocks! She’s a hard worker, she’s like George Costanza working in importing/exporting. She gets up at the crack of dawn. She’s in real estate, not to mention, a sommelier and wine connoisseur. She’s got arms like Venus Williams, burns the midnight oil and is a fashion designer. She’s philanthropic, recognizing that the whole world doesn’t revolve around her and her alone. She pretty much invented sweaters and Pottery Barn. Her hubby is a big stinking cheese in town, revered among his colleagues. She’s got a great sense of humor, maybe even snorts when she laughs…She’s super duper smart, so smart she’s able to teach others. She doesn’t sit on her can watching soaps all day, eating bon bons. Her kids think she’s the best mom in the whole wide world and her husband is so whipped over her that he tells her, “Sweetheart, You STINKING ROCK!” Most importantly, she loves God with her whole heart and seeks to do His will, so according to the whole passage, that is why she should be known…not for all the other great things she does.
But here’s my beef: We all revere the Proverbs 31 woman, don’t get me wrong. Some of you have even had thoughts of resentment towards her, even though you don’t know her and you’ve never met her, so judging her is pretty lame. But my beef lies with verse 15. You see, most women wench about the first line which is, “she gets up early, while it is still dark”, so then they compare their lack of interest in getting up to greet the sun or use the lame excuse of not being a ‘morning person’…whatever works for you…Others get worked up about the fact that she’s up bright and early flipping pancakes and crepes for her family, making goat cheese and garbanzo bean omelets and homemade pitas and they are just trying to open the box of some lame named candy-coated boxed cereal while trying to aim the milk stream into the bowl, not to mention multi-task not burning whatever the heck is in the toaster and pack lunches at the same time.
My beef, however, lies with the third part of the verse:
“…and portions for her servant girls.” Here it is in context:
“She gets up while it is still dark;
she provides food for her family
and portions for her servant girls.”
I know that certain cultures incorporate not the kind of servant hood that once plagued early American culture, but rather helping hands, if you will. I know a girl that was a missionary in Peru and it was insulting to their culture not to hire a laundress and cook because it provided work for the locals. So, yeah, the Proverbs 31 woman was a great woman, but keep in mind that she had AT LEAST 2 young women working for her because “girls” is plural, and given her husband was a big cheese and she seemed to rock the merchandising world, I’m guessing it was more than two…
So, the next time you start feeling badly about how much you aren’t accomplishing on any one given day, because, let’s say you are a busy mom, remember that you don’t have a staff working for you. If your husband gives you crap about not being everything Mrs. Proverbs 31 is, ask him when your cook and laundress will be showing up, and nanny if you have small children. HOWEVER, if you DO indeed have a staff of two or more helpers working for you and you aren’t measuring up to the Proverbs 31 woman, then you are a slacker and you should send your helpers to help the rest of us…
One day at a time, ladies, enjoy and love your families one day at a time.