Theme of the Week: Family: We All Have One
Bible Verse: “Her children rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her.” Proverbs 31:28 ESV
Scripture Reading: Proverbs 31:10-31
The climax of the book of Proverbs is a poem in praise of the ideal woman (Proverbs 31:10–31). She is a role model. The phrase “an excellent wife” in Proverbs 31:10 is, translated more literally, “a woman of strength.” The ideal woman is strong. How so? This poem goes on to say that she works hard, she makes money, she is kind to the poor, she is fearless about the future, she enhances her husband’s reputation, she speaks with wisdom—all this and more.
No wonder her husband trusts her. He feels honored to be her husband. This woman that God gave him is his greatest earthly treasure. In fact, there is only one person this husband trusts more than his wife, and that is Jesus Christ himself. She has won a deep place in his heart. She is “an excellent wife,” and her husband cherishes her.
Some of us men might be feeling, “I haven’t trusted and valued and affirmed my wife as she deserves.” Let’s think about that, because the primary message here in the book of Proverbs is for us husbands and husbands-to-be, which is nearly all of us men. If you are a husband, here is your job: to cultivate and nurture your wife.
Your lifetime impact on your wife should be that her life opens up more and more, and she is enabled to become all that God wants her to be. God is calling you, as her husband, so to care for her that in her latter years she will be thinking, “What a great life I’ve had! My husband understood me. He cared for me. He inspired me to grow in Christ.”
How does a husband do that? Not by browbeating his wife—God doesn’t treat us that way—but by encouraging her. It’s here in Proverbs 31. Her children rise up, they stand up, and they speak respectfully to their mom. They tell her why they esteem her, why they admire her as a woman of God. Where did the kids learn that? From dad: “… he praises her” (Proverbs 31:28). The key word in these verses is “praise.” It appears three times in these verses. A husband cultivates his wife by setting a high tone of praise in their home. No putdowns. No fault-finding. No insults. Not even neutral silence. But rather bright, positive, life-giving praise.
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