For a while now I have been very obsessed with the idea of the Proverbs 31 lady. She is every man’s dream, she is my dream as I’ve always wanted to settle down and spend the rest of my life with not just any pretty, nice lady with good character , but a wife, a godly wife like the bible described. And the reason for this is simple; I just think our present everyday woman – the 21st century woman is gradually drifting further from this status every passing day. Proverbs 31 has become more of an anthem to them than a guideline for living.
So out of my curiosity to know what traits I should look for in a spouse, I decided to read that chapter of the bible over and over, and found out these amazing truths.
DISCLAIMER: This post is not only about what guys should look for in a lady, it goes both ways perfectly.
A good woman is hard to find, and worth far more than diamonds. – Proverbs 31:10
The first thing King Lemuel’s mother had to tell him about a good wife is the fact that they aren’t picked on the street, met at random or found in any average woman (which I believe is true for a good husband). She said that even if you are looking for one, you’ll have to do a good, thorough and no easy job at finding one.
What should this tell us about our present dating culture? A culture where anything goes, as far as she’s well endowed in all the good places or he’s Rich, Tall, and Handsome?
SO here are the traits I picked up while in search of what should be my guiding principle to seeking for love; Traits you SHOULD Look for in a Spouse.
1. He/She must be independent and Industrious
13 She selects wool and flax, and works with eager hands. 14 She is like the merchant ships, bringing her food from afar. 15 She gets up while it is still night; she provides food for her family and portions for her female servants. 16 She considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings she plants a vineyard. 17 She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks. 18 She sees that her trading is profitable, and her lamp does not go out at night. 19 In her hand she holds the distaff and grasps the spindle with her fingers.
I know this is bunch of verses (Proverbs 31:13-19), but it struck me that The Proverbs 31 woman is an Independent and Industrious woman. She is just not lying at home bossing housemaids around waiting for her husband to make all the money and lay it at her feet, no. She’s hardworking, and note, she’s not doing all these for just herself, she’s doing it for her household.
2. He/She must have a heart for people; Kind and affectionate to others
She opens her arms to the poor and extends her hands to the needy. – Proverbs 31:20
The 21st century family model is “me and my husband”, but verse 20 of Proverbs 31 says otherwise. She’s willing to accommodate as many as are poor and in need. Of course, I am not saying a good woman is one that will allow just anybody and everybody into her home, but she will be someone who will not pose a deaf ear to those in need around her.
I have seen many great role models in this aspect- couples with two kids of their own who choose to adopt. I have seen another with ten adopted kids, some who are disabled, and the couple show love and take care of all of them.
3. He/She must possess sound wisdom
She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue – Proverbs 31:20
It is funny how some ladies (and men), don’t have any wisdom to give. I am not talking about smart, book smart, office smart…but share a challenge with them, or situation seeking their contribution, the most spiritual advice they’ll have for you is “It is well”.
4. He/She must want a family
I can go on and on, but one more thing that struck me is the fact that she actually wants a family. Not that she wants a family picture to post on social media, or one for the sake of reality TV, she actually wants a family, she wants to raise and care for a family.
I have heard questions like Is it wrong to just get married for sex? i.e. get married, have sex and no kids, Of course it’s not wrong, not everybody is meant to have kids. By that, I mean some people have terrible personalities that they are a threat to the lives and futures of the children they will birth. But if you check deep down to the motive of that question, some people are just selfish. They want to have fun and enjoy their lives or focus on their career and do not want any kids to come in to “spoil all the fun”. In this case, they need to repent and ask God to work on their heart and such evil motive.
5. He/She must fear the Lord
Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. – Proverbs 31:30
This verse always brings me back to reality when I am thinking of a choice of a spouse. Trust me, I love beautiful women, I mean the very beautiful ones, both facially and endowment-wise. However, I believe this is the summation point for Proverbs 31, to show its importance. I know it is a truth that is difficult to uphold, but it’s good to always remind oneself of what the priority is.
Beauty will fade. If you don’t think so, go and dig out the old pictures of your mum and grandma. They were drop dead divas in their youths. What will make a home is not the face (except it’s a marriage for the reality TV), but it will be the heart.
Likewise, a man who fears the Lord, will love you, seek for your best all the time, and withhold nothing in showing you love and giving you the best you deserve, he will love your kids, love your parents and family, will support your dreams and on and on.
For more on this, read this [wp-svg-icons icon=”point-right” wrap=”i”] THE FOUNDATION OF A PURPOSEFUL RELATIONSHIP
I know I can stop here, but I won’t without sharing an article I saw on Desiring God website, an article by Ben Reaoch, where he took out 6 traits to look out for in a spouse from the same Proverbs 31.
1. Does this person follow through on his word?
Verse 11: “The heart of her husband trusts in her.” He is never worried about her faithfulness to him. He never has to wonder if she is using their money in dishonest or foolish ways.
As you are getting to know someone who would be a potential spouse, consider if the person is honest and trustworthy. Does he have a track record of following through on his word?
2. Does this person make you stronger?
Verse 12: “She does him good, and not harm, all the days of her life.” Verse 23: “Her husband is known in the gates when he sits among the elders of the land.” It seems odd that right in the middle of this passage about the woman who fears the Lord, there’s a verse about the husband. But it makes a point about the woman’s commitment to her husband. Her work at home and service to her husband benefits his reputation and success. He is a better man because he is married to her.
Look for a person to marry who is going to encourage you and work alongside you in a complementary manner. A married couple should be stronger together than they would be apart.
3. Is this person hard-working?
Verses 13–16: She seeks wool and flax, and works with willing hands. She is like the ships of the merchant; she brings her food from afar. She rises while it is yet night and provides food for her maidens. She considers a field and buys it; with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.
Look for someone who is disciplined and diligent, who has goals and works toward them, who starts projects and finishes them.
4. Is this person generous and hospitable?
Verse 20: “She opens her hand to the poor and reaches out her hands to the needy.”
This woman looks to the needs of her family, but she also looks to other needs around her. She is generous and hospitable and helpful.
5. Is this person wise and eager to help others?
Verse 26: “She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.” She looks for ways to help others — both in practical, tangible ways, and also in emotional and spiritual ways. She is a sage, and others will seek out her wise counsel and benefit from it.
You want to marry a person like that — someone who is not consumed with his own selfish activities and entertainments, but delights to help others and has the wisdom to be truly helpful.
6. Does this person truly trust Jesus?
She is not overcome by worry, because she is trusting in her Lord. Verse 25: “She laughs at the time to come.” This woman fears God, and out of such healthy fear flows wisdom and kindness and hard work. The virtuous, godly woman will trust in God and in his providential plans for her. Therefore, she won’t be consumed with fretting over the details of the future.
This question gets at the core characteristic to look for in a spouse: Does this person fear the Lord? Is this person a believer? Don’t compromise on this point. Don’t become “unequally yoked” with someone who doesn’t share your most fundamental identity in life. Christ must be the foundation of the relationship, with both of you looking to him, trusting in him, and laughing together at the days to come.
Here is Ben Reaoch‘s advice in the same post.
Dream and pray and seek counsel about the characteristics you should be looking for in a potential spouse, and then resolve not to settle for less. Don’t let your dating search be driven by appearances. “Like a gold ring in a pig’s snout is a beautiful woman without discretion” (Proverbs 11:22).
The world’s way of dating is a path of folly and pain. Search for a person with biblical discretion, a characteristic that is rare and rewarding. As you rest in God’s plan, in his timing, pray for a spouse who is trustworthy, helpful, hard-working, compassionate, wise, and trusts Jesus.
Let the wisdom of Scripture guide your dating decisions, not superficiality.
Read the full article here; www.desiringgod.org/articles/six-traits-to-look-for-in-a-spouse
So you have read it all, I believe on this page is more than enough wisdom to make a wise choice on who is fitting to be by your side for the rest of your life. Choose well and God will help you.
I’m hoping to read a comment from you ??.
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Is there a question you will like to ask about the married life, especially from a newly wed? Send it to firstname.lastname@example.org and the answer will be published in a future post.