You will succeed! You can handle it!

The description of a virtuous wife in Proverbs 31 ch. may seem like a job posting with very high demands. I felt like I couldn’t fit that description until…You will succeed! You can handle it!

Until 1870, after marriage, all the money and property of women became the property of her husband. After the wedding, she could no longer manage her things. Until 1970, women in England had to write the name of their father or husband in a bank, because they themselves could not buy a house or get a loan.

In many cases, the cause of this dependence on men was the distortion of the words of the Old Testament. Instead of standing shoulder to shoulder with a man, women have become servants for their husbands, losing their rights.

The Old Testament words about a virtuous wife are often mistakenly used to call a woman to submission. Verses written in Proverbs. 31:10-31 has been used by religious people as a standard for what women should achieve, and has often become a sort of criteria for women to qualify for a job they could never get.

A virtuous wife is not only kind, she works late at night, gets up early and willingly works with her hands, she spins, she gets a field, and she is also wise and merciful.

As I read these verses, I have mixed feelings. I want to be a student, but I do not understand how I can achieve all these qualities. I felt pressure, and it seemed to me that I often did not meet all these requirements. At the same time, as I read other parts of Scripture, I didn’t feel the same way.

I discovered two things that changed my perception and made me look at these verses as the most inspiring verses for women in the entire Bible.

  1. These words were never meant as a description of the qualities for the position of a wife or a list of things that a woman must achieve in order to become a “virtuous wife.” It is a song of praise for a woman written by her husband to honor her.
  2. The word translated as “kind” or “virtuous” would most likely be more accurately translated as “courageous”, because it meant a brave woman. The Hebrew expression used in this verse, Eschet chayil, is used to mean “to stand firm like a soldier in war.”

In the Bible, this expression is used about another woman – about Ruth.

“So, my daughter, do not be afraid, I will do to you everything that you said; for all the gates of my people know that you are a virtuous woman; Ruth 3:11.

This verse uses the Hebrew expression Eschet chayil. At the same time, no one could describe Ruth as a successful entrepreneur who bought a field or weaved expensive clothes, or had a wealthy husband. At the time this verse was written, Ruth was a very poor widow who had to beg in order to survive. Why was the expression Eschet chayil used in this case? To describe her bravery as she fought in her daily circumstances.

I think that this expression is still used by Jewish women as an encouragement, something like: “You will succeed! You can do it!”

These words, which were relevant to Ruth in her time, have not lost their relevance to us who aspire to be disciples of Jesus in our time. This is how we prepare for war, fight in our daily circumstances, and guard the walls of Jerusalem instead of leaving it to men.

God gives us strength and courage so that we can live and fulfill the daily tasks entrusted to us, making our way here on earth. Thus we can stand firm in our home. And when the spirit of despondency and indifference sets in, we enter into a struggle against the forces of these spirits. We pray for other members of the body of Christ, our eyes and ears are open when we meet each other, and in the end, we can give God an account for all that we have said and done.

The works we do are our spiritual victories as we overcome our natural inclinations and act on the Word of God. This does not mean that we have to iron all the clothes before Friday …

I don’t want Jesus to find me too light when He comes back and weighs me in His balances. I don’t want to hide behind the backs of men when the fight starts, on the contrary, I want to be brave and courageous in the fight. God tells me: “You will succeed! You can do it!” Then at the end of the road I can hear these words:

“Give her of the fruit of her hands, and let her works be glorified at the gate!” Proverbs 31:31.

Source: У тебя всё получится! Ты справишься! (


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