We all want to be the P31 woman. Proverbs 31:10-31 is the epitome of what a Christian woman should look like. It’s kind of the Christian woman’s guideline for living. I had two amazing years to be a stay at home mom and wife, and during that time I looked as close to the P31 woman as I’ve ever looked. It was easier then because my focus was 100% on my husband, kids, and home. I didn’t have outside stressors taking away my energy and focus.
But you know what?
I still was not a P31 woman.
You know what else?
I constantly beat myself up for it. Now that I’m working full time, I beat myself up for it even more because I fall short even more than I did before.
But It’s Okay
God has really been speaking to me about this a lot lately. Every time I’m hard on myself for not fitting into what I consider to be the definition of a Christian woman, he reminds me that’s why I need him. And I didn’t just need him once when I prayed the prayer for salvation; I need him every day.
The P31 woman is pretty perfect in every way. I’ve wasted so much time being depressed and down on myself for not being the definition of a Christian woman according to this scripture, but during those times, Jesus gently whispers to me,
“It’s alright, my daughter. I came because your flesh doesn’t allow you to be perfect. I gave my life so that your Daddy God can see you through a different lens, and that lens allows him to see you just as he sees me – as perfection. Don’t let the enemy steal your joy. Don’t let him condemn you for your flaws and imperfections. The blood I shed takes that all away. I want you to strive to be your best, but that doesn’t mean you in your own strength are going to be the perfect P31 woman. You are still a wife of noble character.”
Praise God for Jesus coming to take my place and making me righteous in God’s eyes even when I fail!
One thing I’ve learned is that if my focus is on what all characteristics of the P31 woman I can check off for myself, then I’m going to quickly see where I fail, and my focus will have been taken from the important pieces of my life – my family.
I urge you, dear friends, not to place your focus on those areas where you miss the mark. You may find some days (or most days) that you don’t match up with any of those Proverbs 31 characteristics. You know what? That is completely okay. It has taken me so long to learn that, and I still struggle with it sometimes because I feel like I’m failing at being a wife, mom, and Christian. . . most days.
Our God is a good and gracious God. He looks at our hearts, and he is so loving and patient despite how badly we miss the mark. He knows we’re trying. He knows we want to be the wife of noble character. He knows the desires of our hearts, and he gives us grace when we don’t fit that definition. It doesn’t mean we aren’t wives of noble character. It doesn’t make us any less of a Christian woman. It means we serve a mighty God who is full of mercy and grace and loves us unconditionally.
My children may not rise up and call me blessed every morning (especially when it’s basically a fight-to-the-death grudge match just to get them up and off to school most days), but I can assure you that they view me as someone who is very close to the same woman of noble character that Proverbs 31 describes. I’m willing to bet your kids see you the same. Stop beating yourself up, and please PLEASE stop comparing yourself to the women you think are the perfect woman. Newsflash – they’re not either.
God loves you. Don’t spend your days trying to be the P31 woman and beating yourself up when you miss the mark. You’ll miss out on some great things if you do that. Be your best. Just as we strive to walk as closely with Jesus as we can, we will never walk in perfect step with him. It doesn’t stop us from trying. Look at Proverbs 31 the same way, and give yourself grace.