Alright. After our break, it’s time to get back to work. Our next verse is Proverbs 31:18.
This verse seems out of place with what we have been talking about. Is she full of herself in noticing that she is doing well with the products she is selling?
I believe that this verse is showing us that she is a woman with a calculated, organized plan. Just as we learned from verse 16, she does not make decisions based on her emotions. She has considered a strategy. So, when she “perceives that her merchandise is profitable”, it is evidence that she is a good business woman.
The woman works hard through the whole process of her business, including the end result. She does not work to pass the time frivolously. Her investments yield fruit and she keeps a watchful eye on them.
This is also more evidence that she does not only start a project and leave it for someone else to finish. The second half of verse 18 talks about her lamp not going out at night. The woman does not lose focus!
Even after the sun goes down, the woman is still working. Now, some might read this and want to scream, “She’s a slave! She never relaxes! It’s nighttime! Give the woman a break!” Scripture is not saying that the woman should never rest (in fact, just the opposite – I believe that God demands that His people take a Sabbath!). God is not saying, “Woman, work all day and then come home and do the chores.”
I believe that God is saying, “Woman of virtue, I see your hard work. I notice how you take care of things, even as others sleep. I know that the reason why you are still awake is because you love Me and you want to care for your family.” Take note that the verses are not commands, per say. Take a look at other places in Scripture like 1 Corinthians 7 or 1 Peter 3. These are commands directed toward Christian women.
The verses in Proverbs 31 draw us a picture of a woman that all women should want to emulate. The bottom line here is the woman’s heart. She stays up, not because she is ordered to, not because she has to, but because her life is not her own. Jesus Christ has called her to Him. Her sinful self has been crucified with Him. Matthew 10:39 says “Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it” (ESV).
As John 12:26 says, she has been called to follow Jesus and that is why she serves Him the way she does. God has been honoring her through the scriptures for thousands of years because of her service.
God, please teach the women who are Yours to serve in Your name. I pray that You will draw to Yourself those who still own their own life and only work to serve themselves. Please show us how to follow the example of this woman of virtue.