10. The truly capable woman — who can find her? She is far beyond the price of pearls.
11. Her husband’s heart has confidence in her, from her he will derive no little profit.
12. Advantage and not hurt she brings him all the days of her life.
13. She selects wool and flax, she does her work with eager hands.
14. She is like those merchant vessels, bringing her food from far away.
15. She gets up while it is still dark giving her household their food, giving orders to her serving girls.
16. She sets her mind on a field, then she buys it; with what her hands have earned she plants a vineyard.
17. She puts her back into her work and shows how strong her arms can be.
18. She knows that her affairs are going well; her lamp does not go out at night.
19. She sets her hands to the distaff, her fingers grasp the spindle.
20. She holds out her hands to the poor, she opens her arms to the needy.
21. Snow may come, she has no fears for her household, with all her servants warmly clothed.
22. She makes her own quilts, she is dressed in fine linen and purple.
23. Her husband is respected at the city gates, taking his seat among the elders of the land.
24. She weaves materials and sells them, she supplies the merchant with sashes.
25. She is clothed in strength and dignity, she can laugh at the day to come.
26. When she opens her mouth, she does so wisely; on her tongue is kindly instruction.
27. She keeps good watch on the conduct of her household, no bread of idleness for her.
28. Her children stand up and proclaim her blessed, her husband, too, sings her praises:
29. ‘Many women have done admirable things, but you surpass them all!’
30. Charm is deceitful, and beauty empty; the woman who fears the Lord is the one to praise.
31. Give her a share in what her hands have worked for, and let her works tell her praises at the city gates.
While I’m far from a straight-laced Catholic, though I do partake in many of the “stereotypes” that have come to be associated with Catholicism (not disgusting ones, mind y’all), this passage from the Bible ..warms my heart, you could say. Obviously everyone translate the Bible in their own way, but someone very special to me asked if I would explain it to him. Honestly I could have easily said “The perfect wife is a hostess in the living room, a cook in a kitchen, and a whore in the bedroom”, but that’s doesn’t exactly cover all of the bases found in Proverbs 31:10-31. So here goes nothing.
[Side note: I'm no expert in this whole analyzing thing, so don't think I'm trying to deface the word of our Lord. I'm not doing that at all. If your opinions differ from my own, I ask you to please comment below and tell me what you think this means.]
I like to think that the beginning of this passage is basically saying that while sure there are many women out in the world, only a few are actually “gems”. Perfect, wonderful, everything a wife should be. This woman will do everything in her power to please her husband, and give him beautiful and healthy children as well as a happy home to come home to. She’ll do her best to keep him content and satisfied. She wakes early and goes to sleep late so the house is clean, and there’s food on the table. She’s a hard worker. Any dream she so desires will become her goal, and she will succeed. She’s not afraid to get dirty to get where she wants. She cares for everyone, even those whom are not her family. Her husband is an important man, so her being perfect as a wife is always the talk of the town, but that’s no matter, for that’s exactly what she wants to be. She is strong and confident in herself and isn’t afraid to let that be known. She’s the best of the best of the best. She is God fearing, and she deserves just as much, if not more, than she has given.
This is something I strive to live up to, and will continue to do so long after I’m married. I firmly believe that every man should consider his wife to be a Proverbs 31 woman, but that isn’t always the easiest thing to do for a man. It’s the woman’s job to ensure her husband’s happiness. And maybe I’m old fashioned, but I truly believe that in my own heart.