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Top 10 Takeaways from Proverbs 31 PART 2

Top 10 Takeaways from Proverbs 31 PART 2

 6. She has an entrepreneurial spirit

We see over and over again in Proverbs 31 that a Virtuous Woman has an entrepreneurial spirit. In verse 16 she considers a field and buys it, plants a vineyard, and then in verse 18 makes a profit. I love this illustration because we can see the mind of the virtuous woman working and get a little bit of insight as to how she thinks about things. We know from the passage that she is obviously skilled (she works with her hands, she plants a vineyard, she makes her own clothes and bed-coverings, etc.). Her abundant skills are not what stands out to me, though. I feel that even if this woman had no real tactical skills, her mind would still be turning about how she could make something of herself. She has a business mind about her, it doesn't matter what she is doing or how she is making profit for her family, she is always thinking one step ahead of how she can work and use what she has for good. We don't have to have a huge successful business or a huge successful career, but we should have a mind that is always exploring and always wanting to find ways to hustle or create good out of what we have. 

7. She is strong (in spirit and physically) takes care of appearance

The Virtuous Woman is a STRONG woman, period. We see in verse 17 and again in verse 25 that she dresses herself in strength and is clothed in strength. Strength is such an integral part of her character that it is literally like clothing to her. Not only is she strong in character and conduct, this woman is physically strong. Verse 17 says that she makes her arms strong. We don't have to be out here with Michelle Obama arms, but we do need to take care of ourselves physically. The virtuous woman has to have strong arms, she is out planting fields and working. Our bodies are our temple for God, and we should maintain it and be able to use it for His good. 

8. She is prepared

We already know that we should not fear for the future but that doesn't mean we should't prepare for it. Pretty much the entire passage of Proverbs 31 shows preparation and excellent execution of various thing by the Virtuous Woman. Verse 18 says that, "Her lamp does not go out by night". I love this snippet of chapter 31 because if combined with verse 15 ("she rises while it is yet night"), it appears that the Virtuous Woman never sleeps at all! That is taken quite literally though, and to me, the fact that her lamp does not go out by night shows how prepared she is for whatever may come. Remember the Parable of the Ten Virgins? Five of the Virgins brought enough oil for their lamps to last the wait. That is what verse 18 in Proverbs 31 speaks to me. The Virtuous Woman is always prepared, her lamp has enough oil to last the entire night and thensome for when she rises and starts her day. She is ready for whatever meets her at whatever hour. I can only hope someday achieve the organized and prepared manner of this woman!

9. She is generous

In other areas of the Bible we are told over and over again to give and to be generous. We are given so many examples of the Christ-like generosity we ought to have, and the Virtuous Woman is yet another. Not only in verse 15 does she humble herself before her maidservants by serving them food, further down in verse 20 she "opens her hand to the poor and reaches out her hands to the needy". She acts with a true servant's heart to help and give to those in need. Though she is successful and well to do, she doesn't boast her accomplishments or have a proud attitude. The Virtuous Woman humbly gives and shows generosity to all. What a fantastic example of the way we should be!

10. She is kind and wise

Do you remember the old saying, "if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all"? I feel like as I get older I revert to this concept more and more, especially in the era of Facebook arguments. Proverbs 31 provides a great example of not only acting in kindness, but a gentle reminder of how a Virtuous Woman opens her mouth with wisdom. Verse 26 also says that "the teaching of kindness is on her tongue". Not only has she displayed kindness to her maidservants, her family, and others she has been generous to; she goes further than those acts of kindness and teaches it. The Virtuous Woman thinks before she speaks and uses wisdom and kindness in practice as well as teaching. There is no air of hypocrisy here, she truly practices what she preaches. 

11. (because I couldn't narrow down my favorites) She is respected, blessed, and praised

These three qualities are less things that the Virtuous Woman possesses, and more so the ways she is regarded because of all her other characteristics. She is such a hard-working, fair, and kind woman that people seem to have no option but to respect her, praise her, and call her blessed. I don't even need to elaborate, verses 28-31 say it best: 
"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 the fruit of her hands, and let her works praise her in the gates."
Wow. No one is perfect, but the Virtuous Woman has so many redeeming qualities that even on the days she messes up, her children and husband still know who she is and praise her and call her blessed. If we act in ways that shine our light onto others, it will only make it easier for the people in our life to speak praise over us in ways that propel us to be even better. When we walk with the Lord and in ways of righteousness, our works will be praised.

I challenge you!

There are 11 items on this list and 12 months in a year. I challenge you to practice one trait each month and encourage others around you in this area. It won't be easy, and you won't be perfect, but even just keeping that trait on the forefront of your mind throughout the day can be life-changing. I'm starting now through September and will update you on how my Virtuous Woman challenge is going each month. For example, trait #1 (from my previous blog post) is She is Valued. The entire month I will focus on what God says about me and reminding myself that I have value. I also focus extend this to those around me and recognizing how others have value. Trait #9 is She is Generous, so maybe on that month I do acts of kindness for others or volunteer each weekend and encourage or recognize generous acts around me. I have a feeling that by this time next year, I will feel like the best version of myself and will be able to act in ways that more easily allow God's light to shine through me. The idea is you get so used to showing these qualities month by month that it is now so integral to who you are. Some of these traits aren't easy and you will have to brainstorm what it looks like in your life to show these characteristics. Who's in?! I would love to follow your journeys as well! The complete list is below so you don't have to toggle between blog posts!
#1. She is valuable- August/September
#2. She Hustles (is a hard-worker)- October
#3. She does not settle- November
#4. She is not lazy and wasteful- December
#5. She is a provider- January 
#6. She has an entrepreneurial spirit- February 
#7. She is not lazy/wasteful- March
#8. She is prepared- April
#9. She is generous- May
#10. She is kind and wise- June
#11. She is respected, blessed, and praised- July

BONUS

I will be giving away a gift each month to anyone coming on this adventure with me! You get 1 entry by letting me know you are joining the challenge (commenting below)! You get another entry by posting your nomination for someone who has the character trait of the month on social media, tagging SHE WHO IS, and using #virtuouswomanchallenge. You get TWO entries if someone nominates you as a woman who shows this trait! I can't wait to see how many incredible women are out there! September's give away winner will be announced October 1st! If you're getting here late just join in on which month we are on!
xoxo, 

Shelby

Continue reading

Top 10 Takeaways from Proverbs 31 PART 1

Top 10 Takeaways from Proverbs 31 PART 1

September AND October Virtuous Woman Challenge Reflection

September AND October Virtuous Woman Challenge Reflection

Grace upon Grace

Grace upon Grace

Comments

Sarah

I’m in for sure! Love this

Teresa

I’m in!

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