I truly dislike seeing bad marriages (don’t we all?) – marriages where you can tell one or both partners are unhappy… or miserable together. It’s almost painful to witness, and yet, we see it so often that it becomes the norm, or expected after you’ve lived together for so long. “You fight like a married couple!” well-meaning people will say to couple already bickering.
It’s not really intended to be that way. lol
I’ve always loved the Proverbs 31 passage of the amazing wife. Many women resent being “held” to a standard so intense – they call her Wonder Woman, or she’s passed off as one of those Super Moms that women are annoyed by because she makes them feel less than. But I admire her – aspire to be her – she is kind, trustworthy, strong, unafraid, she selects beautiful clothes for herself and her family, she makes exotic foods, she wakes up before everyone else to make sure even her servants are served. She cares for the poor and always has open arms toward them. She takes care of herself, dressing in fine purple linen (which was the symbol of royalty). She’s sensible with money, she has her own business (a fashion business? She is designing, making and selling linen garments and belts through the merchants…) with what she earns, she buys a field and plants a vineyard! She is both creative and capable. How does she accomplish so much?
I usually don’t talk about men, I’m a woman for one thing, but I also feel like men have too many pressures already – especially with our male-bashing culture, I don’t want to add to that weight that is already on many of our good men’s heavy shoulders. But to ignore the man behind this incredible woman, is just wrong! Look at the man her husband is – “Her husband has full confidence in her.” (31:11)
“The Proverbs 31 man “has full confidence” in his wife. There’s plenty of maturity – and balance – in their relationship. He doesn’t treat his wife like a child, nor does he treat her like she’s his mother. He encourages her specific gifts, and, like a plant living in a greenhouse, she blossoms in that environment.
“This is a man who trusts his wife’s judgement. He’s not threatened by her success or by her busy life…. And he gives her freedom to invest, freedom to manage the household, freedom to sell what she produces, and freedom to care for the poor and needy.”
He’s not domineering and controlling, and she’s not overly independent in her own life – excluding him from her activities. It would be hard for a husband to feel confident in his wife in either situations above.
“Her husband is respected at the city gate, where he takes his seat among the elders of the land.” (31:23) For a man to feel extremely confident, he needs his wife to respect him at home – they go hand in hand – success and respect.
“Her husband praises her… her husband and sons call her blessed.” (31:28) “Few things are more motivating to a woman than words of sincere admiration coming from her husband. The Proverbs 31 man is liberal with these expressions.” She’s successful and he acknowledges it and praises her, but the praise also encourages her to be successful, again, they go hand in hand.
Men, you have so much strength to offer women with who you are – or who you are becoming!!! Some things to think about:
- He has confidence in her
- He trusts her judgement
- He encourages her in her unique gifts
- He praises her for her accomplishments
Together they make a powerful couple – a beautiful marriage – the way it’s supposed to be.
Quotes from “The Most Important Year in a Man’s Life” Wolgemuth & Devries