The Proverbs 31 Woman

An excellent wife who can find?
She is far more precious than jewels.
The heart of her husband trusts in her,
and he will have no lack of gain.
She does him good, and not harm,
all the days of her life.

She seeks wool and flax, and works with willing hands.

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She is like the ships of the merchant;
she brings her food from afar.


She rises while it is yet night
and provides food for her household
and portions for her maidens.


She considers a field and buys it;
with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.


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She dresses herself with strength
and makes her arms strong.


She perceives that her merchandise is profitable.
Her lamp does not go out at night.

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She puts her hand to the distaff,
and her hands hold the spindle.



She opens her hand to the poor
and reaches out her hands to the needy.

She is not afraid of snow for her household,
for all her household are clothed in scarlet.

She makes bed coverings for herself;
her clothing is fine linen and purple.


Her husband is known in the gates
when he sits among the elders of the land.

She makes linen garments and sells them;
she delivers sashes to merchant.

Strength and dignity are her clothing,
and she laughs at the time to come.



She opens her mouth with wisdom,
and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.
She looks well to the ways of her household 
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
Her children rise up and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
“Many women have done excellently, 
but you surpass them all.” 

Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain,
but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.

Give her of the fruit of her hands,
and let her works praise her in the gates.

Severe Mercies

She’s a planner, this child of mine. She likes to know what’s coming. She likes knowing that what she is doing now is the right thing for now as well as down the road.

Everything seems to be right there in front of her, almost within her reach. She thought she knew how the story was going to go. Or at least how the next few chapters would read. But with the turn of a page the plot changed and nothing was quite what she thought. The narrative, her narrative, suddenly became a page of letters and words with no sentence structure, line breaks or paragraphs.

And it’s not an easy place for her to be. But I watch her set her shoulders and lift her face to the Son again and again and move forward to step into this story that she doesn’t know. Trying to see a break in the letters, to find the words to read His narrative…

looking for the goodness in this new and unknown chapter and verse.

She’s being taught the lesson we all must learn.

In one hand we hold tight-fisted the things we know to be unchanging truth. Namely, the character of God; He is good and does good. He is faithful and with us always.

In the other hand we hold loosely those things we want and desire. Knowing that we only see so much and He seeks our good in far reaching corners that we cannot even imagine. Trusting that He is growing our character to suit the story He is writing.

It’s a painful lesson at times for all of us. Because sometimes we think we know best. Sometimes we just can’t envision anything better than our own imaginations. Choosing our own story over His is like declaring a comic book a Pulitzer prize winner or comparing Shakespeare to a dime store novel.

Sometimes we just can’t see the story unfolding but His story is always better so we must learn to trust His mercy in the plot twists.

Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly than
 all that we ask or think, according to the power at
 work within us, to Him be the glory in the church and 
in Jesus Christ throughout all generations, 
forever and ever. Amen.
~Ephesians 3:20