Is being a financially wise wife a controversial statement?
I often think of my twenties as one big lesson in the art of becoming a woman. I have been very fortunate to have wonderful examples in the community in which I live, varying from successful single women to talented wives and mothers. My mother, mother-in-love, grandmas, aunts & cousins on both sides of my family are also dynamic women and role models for me. In this, I am blessed.
When I read Proverbs 31 and stop to pray and think about what I am reading, I see a picture of a woman who is authentic, close to the Lord, and shrewd. In the history of the world, women have not always been looked at as shrewd financial gurus. They haven’t been seen as strong. It is just a real fact that many times, women were provided for by the men in their lives, or they struggled on their own, sometimes not really making it in their prospective societies. At least not with dignity and honor.
In my own mind and heart, I think I grew up somewhat with a picture of a woman that looks like this: silly, frivolous, enjoying spending money on the latest fashions no matter what her husband’s income was, and teaching her daughters to live this way, pushing the men in their lives, their providers, to the limit. With little understanding of how finances work. This has little to do with my own mother and the women in my life; they were the opposite. I think it has to do with perceptions from society. Many times, I have heard a story of a woman who was married for 50 years and never even knew how to pay her utility bill when her dear husband passed away. That woman probably was very capable in many other areas. And very cared for in the area of finances by her husband. That is a good thing.
What does scripture say here, though? Is it an impossible picture of a woman, put here to make us all feel less than and like we could never measure up? Or is scripture truly God-breathed, useful for building us up and equipping us for every good work? I believe that we may have put our own ways of thinking from our societies upon these verses, not just reading them on their own. And as I have tried to throw my lens out, and just read and pray over these verses, I have actually found something incredible.
I’ve found that I am encouraged like nothing else by reading these verses, memorizing little bits that shine and stand out to me in different seasons of life. I am uplifted by these verses! And I feel the Lord’s heart towards women, seen all throughout the Scriptures, as the God who calls forth a woman into all that she could be. Who sees hidden seeds of all that she can become, and waters these seeds, keeping them alive, and cultivating her into a fruitful tree in due season. God is the Gardener, after all. (John 15:1, Genesis 1)
Maybe we as women are specifically gifted in a way that blesses our families, husbands, or coworkers & friends, that men are not. We are not less than them, we do not have to be equal to men. We are different and we are gifted and we are relational, and we are smart. We are strong! And that is beautiful.
So, let’s use these brains of ours and that stunningly beautiful, relational heart to build up our families, spheres of influence & men around us. Use those fashion skills to teach your children how to present themselves to a dark world in a way that makes them shine in modesty and style! Use all your talents, or your few talents to be financially shrewd. And I will, too. Let’s do what we can to support our husband’s role as a provider if we are wives or stay-at-home mamas. Knowing that our inner strength shines in the way we care for our home & families and isn’t diminished here. Whether that means a full-time career in the professional world, or whether that means leading a quiet life, pouring into those around you, or some unique mixture of both that is all yours…
Be who you are, all that you are, in bright beauty. It’s who you are, godly woman. You are smart, sensitive, self-controlled, authentic, persevering, strong, weak, emotional, loved…just…beautiful. You. are. beautiful. And your family, and the whole world, needs that beauty that only you can offer. 💖