27 She watches over the affairs of her household
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
VIGILANT: While she is intentional about making time for rest and refreshment, she is not lazy or self-entitled. Rather, she manages her household with vigilant care.
28 Her children arise and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
29 “Many women do noble things,
but you surpass them all.”
BELOVED: In the eyes of her husband and children, she is the best wife and mother in the world. This is how it should be: each family member overjoyed with the other. Unfortunately, this is often not the case because of our own sin and selfishness. Rather than finding fault with those around us, Proverbs instructs us how we can become people transformed by God’s wisdom and truth. Once we begin to change, we, in turn, become agents of transformation in our families and communities.
30 Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;
but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
GODLY: In these closing verses of the Book of Proverbs, God’s Word reveals the secret to life and love. It is found neither in charm nor beauty, for both are ephemeral. Rather, the praiseworthy life is based—first and foremost—on the reverent worship of God. This proverb returns us to the foundational principles presented at the very outset.
31 Honor her for all that her hands have done,
and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.
CELEBRATED: Proverbs calls us to acknowledge and appreciate the godly wife for everything she does both inside her home and outside in the community. We can be grateful for blessings great and small. In doing so, we encourage godliness in one another and acknowledge the Lord as the source of every good and perfect gift (James 1:17).
The Book of Proverbs begins with an invitation to understand what constitutes the “good life” and ends with a picture of the godly family: virtuous wife, noble husband, and godly children. In a very real sense, Proverbs 31 fulfills the promise made in Proverbs 1.
But, as Solomon will later reflect in Ecclesiastes, it’s much easier to see a goal than to achieve it. And even if you end up getting everything you think you want, success and wisdom are meaningless until we find our ultimate satisfaction in God himself. For there is no wisdom or success apart from him; and only by and through him can we become all he has meant for us to be.
The Book of Proverbs, is first and finally a road sign pointing us to the Gospel:
- We see the mark.
- We see how we miss the mark.
- We see how God’s Son makes the mark.
- We receive Jesus’ work on our behalf.
- We live empowered by his Spirit to make the mark.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank you for being as generous
with your grace and you are with your wisdom.
I pray that both of these things would overflow from my life into the lives of those around me. Convict me when I miss the mark.
Consecrate me in Christ.
Convince me that—through your Spirit—I can live a life that is praiseworthy by and for you.