Proverbs 31: Week 30 | The Wolfe Notes

Welcome to week thirty of our Proverbs 31 journey. This week we're studying what it means to look well to the ways of the household. If you'd like to return to one of our previous stops, let our "Wolfe Notes" guide you. 

  • In January we examined our value with the help of Proverbs 31 verses 10 and 29.
  • In February we learned what uplifting means by looking at Proverbs 31:11 and 23.
  • In March, we considered the virtue of respect by studying Proverbs 31:12 and 28.
  • In April, we trained to be hardworking with Proverbs 31:13 and 19 as our instructors.
  • In May, we saw what it takes to be resourceful by examining Proverbs 31:14 and 21. 
  • In June, we developed our caring muscle by exercising Proverbs 31:15 and 22.
  • In July, we'll practice being savvy with help from Proverbs 31:16 and 27.
If you're ready to travel with us, welcome! Grab your July calendar with daily activities, the lamp for your feet (the Bible), and let's get going! We're journeying through the concluding poem of Proverbs and we're so glad you decided to walk along this road with us! Imagine that as we walk, we're talking about the daily activities. Our side of the discussion is outlined below. What would you add? How would you challenge us? (Ideas that are our thoughts alone are designated with an *.)

A wheat field with text overlay quoting a Hope Darst song.

Contents:
*A Look at Roles from a Proverbs 31:27 perspective.
*Godly Wisdom Sharing something we learn about God from this verse.
*Application of Proverbs 31:27 in the past, present, and hopes for the future.
Cross References of Proverbs 31:27
*Worship with Hope Darst.
*Activity Compliment a savvy decision you witnessed.
*Connections between Proverbs 31:16 and 31:27

*A Look at Roles

 from a Proverbs 31:27 perspective.

  • Leads his wife by paying attention to her, directing her in making godly choices, providing for her daily needs, intervening as necessary, and connecting her with godly companions.
  • Loves his wife by diligently working to sustain her emotional, physical, relational, and spiritual needs with life-giving words and deeds that are sourced in the Father's love. 
In response, a helper:
  • Submits to her husband by making choices that align with his expectations, accepting his correction and guidance, finding contentment in his provision, and by being open to presented opportunities that lead to godliness.
  • Respects her husband by confidently supporting his goals with the labor of her own hands, and joyfully regards his life-giving sustaining efforts toward her.

*Godly Wisdom

Sharing something we learn about God from this verse
  • He watches over us always.
  • He never stops working.


*Application

Of Proverbs 31:27 in the past, present, and hopes for the future.
  • In the past, I UPHELD this verse as my motto. Everything was my responsibility, and any failure was my failure. Failure happened when I didn't work hard enough. If I just put in more effort, more time, more complexity, then I would know success. This mindset caused a lot of trouble. I focused on things that didn't matter and worked endlessly to get nowhere. I remember feeling like I was constantly running but never achieving. Even though I was busy and alert, it was for the wrong reasons. Unwittingly, I dined on the bread of idleness.
  • Presently, I am ENCOURAGED. This verse is encouraging, not belittling. Because God watches over me and never rests, I can do all things according to the purposes for which He made me by resting in His ongoing strength. I can accomplish good things when I follow His leadership. I can rest when I trust in His provision. I now realize the only bread there is to eat is the bread of life. If you're not running your life on food of God's provision, you are running your life into a wall.
  • In the future, I hope to PERSIST in this understanding: It's not about my effort or my control; it's about obedience and surrender.

Cross References

Of Proverbs 31:27

Proverbs 14:1 KJV: Every wise woman buildeth her house: but the foolish plucketh it down with her hands.

  • In another version: A woman's family is held together by her wisdom, but it can be destroyed by her foolishness. (CEV)
  • Cross References: 
    • Proverbs 9:13-15: A foolish woman is clamorous (brash/reckless): she is simple (senseless/naive/does not understand), and knoweth nothing (is ignorant). For she sitteth at the door of her house, on a seat in the high places of the city, to call passengers who go right on their ways. (*She labors to distract people from righteousness.)
    • Proverbs 21:9 & 19: It is better to dwell alone in a corner of the housetop (or desert), than with a brawling (nagging, quarreling, contentious) woman in a wide (lovely, large, common) house.
  • Commentaries: (Pulpit & Gill)
    • "A good wife is the saving of a house." 
    • Servian proverb: "The husband should labor; the wife should save."
    • EARTHLY WIFE: by good housewifery, prudent economy, and maintained awareness of what her family is doing, she discretely guides family affairs, maintains good decorum, and raises virtuous, God-fearing children. 
    • CHRIST: AKA the wise woman of Proverbs, builds His house upon Himself - The Rock - by ministration of His word and administration of His ordinances, He guides, governs, cares, and provides for His church.
    • MINISTERS: lay Christ's foundation through ministry and build souls on it by speaking truths that edify the church to build them up in holy faith.
    • BUT THE FOOLISH: By idleness, laziness, and lavishness tear apart whatever might have been as false ministers through lies, false doctrines, and idol worship defile God and subvert the faith of many.
I Thessalonians 4:11 KJV: And that ye study to be quiet, and to do your own business and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you.
  • Cross References
    • Proverbs 17:1: Better is a dry morsel (crust, bread) with quietness (peace, tranquility), than a house full of feasting with strife (conflict, arguing).
    • I Corinthians 4:12-13: And we labor, working with our own hands. Being reviled (cursed, abused, vilified), we bless (wish them well); being persecuted, we endure (suffer it, bear it patiently); being defamed (slandered, spoken of evilly, insulted), we entreat (answer kindly, respond gently, reply as friends, seek reconciliation). We have been made as the filth of the world, the offscouring of all things (nothing more than the trash and garbage of this world) until now.
  • Commentaries: (Pulpit and Gill)
    • Study to be quiet: Make it your ambition to mind your own affairs; avoid unrest, live in peace; be ambitious to not be ambitious. 
    • Avoid the impassioned excitement that often leads to disagreement by focusing on your own affairs.
*Conclusions: Wisdom manages her household well when she 1) builds a firm foundation in Christ, 2) uplifts others in His truth, 3) commits to living in peace, 4) diligently attends to the work set before her.

*Worship

With Hope Darst.

The process described in this song (as I understand it):
  1. We try to build ourselves up in our own strength. ("I built up my own name")
  2. It fails. ("But the walls couldn't stand")
  3. Eventually, we decide to let God be in control. ("So, I put my ruins into your hands")
  4. When trials come, we witness that God is able to hold everything together. ("And watch you restore them like only you can," "If the Lord builds the house nobody can tear it down," "Bricks weathered through the storm and fire," "What God holds together stands firm every time," "My heart is anchored on this solid truth, whatever God's building, it can't be moved.")
  5. So, we surrender all. ("As for me and my house, we're gonna serve you, Lord. So here's the keys. Come on in. Everything we have is Yours.")

*Activity

Compliment a savvy decision you witnessed.
  • I witnessed someone sharing an honest but difficult opinion out of care for the long-term outcome of another person.
  • I witnessed someone surrendering a relationship-ending event into the hands of Jesus and choosing to fight by trusting that "if the Lord builds the ‘house’ nobody can tear it down."
  • I witnessed someone following God's will over their own, even though it meant a life change and increased exposure to spiritual battles.

*Connections

 Between Proverbs 31:16 and 31:27
 
Proverbs 31:16: She considereth a field, and buyeth it: with the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard. 

Proverbs 31:27: She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness.
  • She considereth / looketh: She takes her time gathering intel. She does not jump right in.
  • And buyeth it / well: When she commits, she commits completely.
  • With the fruit of her hands / eateth not the bread of idleness: She is a hard worker for godly causes.
  •  She planteth a vineyard / ways of her household: nurtures, grows, tends, oversees her investment.
*Conclusions: A virtuous woman (Wisdom) makes well-informed decisions and wholeheartedly commits to them by exerting persistent, purposeful labor to nurture good from her investments.

Final Thoughts

Because He watches over me, I can make savvy decisions, commit to them fully, and diligently work to bring them life. What He does in me, I can do for others. This is ministry.

Father God, I rest in Your caring embrace. You chose me, committed to me, and diligently work to bring me life. Guide me in doing the same for others.

Growing with You,

Ready for week 31?

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