**Note from the Pastor: Despite this sermon concentrating on the traits of Godly women, there are important points that could affect men and women, alike. So, read and reflect, whether man or woman.**
Proverbs 31:10-31 provides, perhaps the best, insight on the characteristics of a Godly woman, in the entire Bible. But women will often ask, “How can I possibly live up to the expectations of a Godly woman as presented in Proverbs 31?” Well, not every one of these qualities and traits may be true for each woman, but they should all at least be taken seriously.
Almost immediately in this passage we read, “The heart of her husband trusts in her, and he will not lack anything good. She rewards him with good, not evil, all the days of her life.” Sometimes, women don’t speak life over their husbands. This may come from the emasculating of men by women which stems from oppression of the female sex throughout history. Nonetheless, women should not have reaction to his action without first seeking God. They are always to be Godly women, no matter the circumstances. Matthew 18:18 tells us that we have the ability to bind things on Earth and in Heaven, or to loose them on Earth and in Heaven. This specifically refers to the grudges/burdens we hold on to, but with that we gain the understanding that our words have power, too. The things we forgive, or don’t forgive, others for, have the ability to bind or loose the individual and ourselves. By loosening someone, or forgiving them, we free our own hearts by ridding ourselves of the grudge/burden. Throughout history, women were being bound by the words spoken over them. Because of this, women decided to fight back in a feminist movement. Women weren’t wrong to fight for their rights because their rights shouldn’t have been taken to begin with. But, it has caused us to become a divided society; men vs. women. Now, society is in a cultural movement where we are trying to come out of the feminist movement, but still have women trying to be right and prove a point. What we must understand is, we are actually equal in the eyes of God. The world is creating a culture where men are more important. So, women tend to belittle them to feel better about themselves. But, if a woman is talking bad about her husband, putting him down, and emasculating him, how is he supposed to trust her?
Women are feelers, if they are in a fight, the first thing they want to do is call someone to talk about it. On the other hand, men don’t usually work that way, if they have a problem, and they want to talk about it, they usually talk with their wife about it. Proverbs 21:9 says that it is better to live outside of the home than in a home with a quarrelsome wife. A man should know he can trust his wife. Men want to feel like men and they feel fulfilled when they know that their wives are honoring them. By talking to others about their husband, a woman can change others’ opinions and views about her husband. So, who do we go to when we have problems in our marriage? The first person is God. He can take whatever we have to cry out to Him. Our husbands should be able to trust us no matter what that we have their back and are not putting them down. When a man feels like a man, a woman gets to feel like a woman and they will each be happy in the relationship. A man will value and cherish a wife who is capable of recognizing that she cares for him in spite of his weaknesses.
Further along in Proverbs 31: 13-16 we read, “She selects wool and flax and works with willing hands. She is like the merchant ships, bringing her food from far away. She rises while it is still night and provides food for her household and portions for her female servants. She evaluates a field and buys it; she plants a vineyard with her earnings.” This demonstrates to us that women are allowed and may even be expected to work outside the home. In fact, scripture tells us that Miriam, Deborah, Anna and many other women of the Bible were prophets. So, it’s obvious that God has important work for women. However, when women try to take over leadership in the house, they aren’t walking in their rightful place as God created them; man and woman, side-by-side. This doesn’t mean that women can’t do anything, but God has chosen men to be leaders of the household and each gender was created to compliment the other in this way. Men were designed to lead. When we allow them to be the spiritual leaders and head of the household, we are building their confidence. By building their confidence they are more likely to step into that role of being the leader.
Furthermore, the question is raised, what if my husband isn’t a believer? 1 Peter 3:1-2 tells us, “In the same way wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands so that, even if some disobey the Christian message, they may be won over without a message by the way their wives live when they observe your pure, reverent lives.” Many times, if a man isn’t a believer but his wife is, she will try to force God, and religion on him, but God has a plan and we must trust Him. No matter what he does, her actions will speak loudly to him. So, it is important for women to show love and demonstrate godliness.
And, for those women who have the control, how do they give the control back to the men? The best way is by slowly filtering things back their way and giving them responsibility, by encouraging them to do it and trusting them to do it even though it may be different from the way a woman would do it. The Bible says in 1 Peter 3:4 that women have gentle and quiet spirits. Even if she thinks that that isn’t who she is, if God has it written then it must be possible for every woman by His spirit. Gentleness in scripture refers to a “load lifter,” someone who can help relieve some burdens off of others so it is important to ask, what can I do to lighten his load each day?
So women, you have been given the task of giving back the position of leadership to your husband. It may not be easy, but it’ll be worth it.
Ask the Pastor:
Q: How is it that people who have not been saved or invited the Holy Spirit into their lives can still get conviction?
A: “I believe God imparted something in us that wants us to do good, it is probably something that was given to us at the time God formed us. I believe we call it our conscience until we become believers, then the Holy Spirit takes over. I think that even when we do not know our biological parents, we still have their traits and with God being our Father, we probably inherit some of His traits. This is a tricky question, because another thing that comes to mind is maybe the teaching we are raised in. Imagine if we grew up in an upbringing where murdering people to have food was the norm, then would they believe that it was wrong or not?”