Proverbs 31 Woman: Problem or Paradise?

(I really don’t want to publish this post. I want to write all encouraging messages and be likable. But the Lord is laying on my heart to say this, so I am being obedient. Please don’t hate me at the end!) 


Have you ever heard someone be critical of the Proverbs 31 woman? What do we do with measuring up to her attributes? How does God’s grace enter the picture? #ThrivingInChrist #proverbs #proverbs31woman #grace #Godsgrace #bible #biblicaltruths

Have you ever heard someone be critical of the Proverbs 31 woman?

“I cannot, nor will not measure up to the attributes of this fictitious woman! God’s grace is enough for me!”

I’ve never heard of someone accomplishing all that the Proverbs 31 woman entails; that’s quite a list! But that isn’t the point. The true objective is to not quench the Spirit.

If we are embracing our human qualities with such a tight grip that we never allow God to work in us, then there something wrong. If the Holy Spirit comes knocking on the door of your heart, and says I want you to clean your home, or prompts you to take on a new skill, be careful that you do not quench the Spirit.

Quench not the Spirit. 1 Thessalonians 5:19

The Holy Spirit is often represented with the symbol of fire. If you have lit a candle, and blow it out, then you have quenched the flame. In the same way, if you feel that prompting from the Holy Spirit, and you say, “No, I’m not going to do that because God’s grace covers my messy areas; I have no need to improve,” then you have quenched the Spirit.

The Principle of the Proverbs 31 Woman is Repeated

Although the Proverbs 31 woman is figurative in nature, we can still look at her example of diligence to responsibilities. We can see that she doesn’t adopt the “it’s good enough” mindset (Proverbs 31:10-31).

I love it when God reveals new revelation or truth from a familiar story. At the same time, the principles of God aren’t a buffet. 😉 Let’s be a good “Berean” (Acts 17:10-11) to see if what I’m saying truly lines up with the Word of God.

Here are other examples:

  • Daniel is one who was known for having an excellent spirit (Daniel 5:12, 6:3). His life was able to be used for God’s glory. After studying, I discovered the biblical benefits of having an excellent spirit.
  • The rich ruler. Jesus didn’t say to him, “My grace is sufficient for you. There’s nothing more you need to do.” See, the rich ruler had it right in all areas except for one. He still lacked one thing, and Jesus pointed it out to him (Luke 18:18-23).
  • The Bride of Christ is being made spotless and without wrinkle before Jesus comes back. (Ephesians 5:27; 2 Peter 3:14)

Have you ever heard someone be critical of the Proverbs 31 woman? What do we do with measuring up to her attributes? How does God’s grace enter the picture?

Where God’s Grace Enters

Am I saying that if we don’t do everything that the Proverbs 31 woman does then we won’t go to heaven? Not at all.

I’m not an advocate of the bondage of perfectionism. Instead, I want to be driven by loving God. An important motivator in this process, is that I know His grace backs me.

As far as the Proverbs 31 woman goes, for example, she is able to sew. I tried taking lessons for that when I was in school, and couldn’t really make a go of it. Also, she is able to have a garden. I have been known to kill many, many plants.

If one day, the Holy Spirit impresses upon me to take up the skill again, or another one, then I know I would need to do so. It would be at that moment His grace would come in and be sufficient for me. I would be able to master the skill because of His grace.

Let’s choose not to measure ourselves against attaining perfectionism, but obeying God because we love Him and want to give Him our best.

Let's choose not to measure ourselves against attaining perfectionism, but obeying God because we love Him and want to give Him our best. #ThrivingInChrist Click To Tweet

Is there an area you have ever quenched the Spirit? Tell us about it in the comments below. Where do you see God’s grace at work in your life now?


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8 Comments

  1. Johannes Lourens says:

    To stop smoking….I know I can do anything through Christ who strengthens me …but I’m still reluctant but NOW I am really going to stop. Thanks for this God sent message.

  2. Challenging words here today, Kelly! Thanks for this!! Blessings!

    1. kellyrbaker says:

      Great to see you here, Liz! Blessings to you!

  3. Why didn’t you want to hit publish?
    For me, the Proverbs 31 Woman is a great example of what’s possible if I choose to follow her excellent lead.
    Great examples on how not to quench the spirit. I’m reminded of a time God put something on my heart to do and I didn’t do it because I did not want to deal with the inevitable accusatory push back. Everyday I wish I obeyed. Could’ve stopped someone very close to me from making a bad decision.

  4. Like you, I shy away from controversy in my writing, but I really appreciate this post in which you gently remind us of the great power that is available to us to effect in us the holy living that God desires. We don’t obey to earn our salvation, but instead, we obey because we belong to the King and we want to live up to His glorious standards of righteous living out of love and gratitude.

  5. Hi, Kelly! I recently created a Bible study course on the Proverbs 31 woman and as I dug deeper into Scripture, I started to see her with different eyes. Often, we don’t let ourselves get passed what we initially read in that passage, maybe out of fear, and likely a lot from bad teaching on this passage. But as I studied her, I started to see that my life resembles the Proverbs 31 woman much more than I thought it did – and it has nothing to do with grinding my own flax or sewing my own clothes! Because this is a topic close to my heart right now, I chose your post as my G & T feature this week. Obeying the word of God means studying it and digging deeper than the surface – and then being pleasantly surprised at what we uncover. Thanks for sharing on Grace & Truth.

    1. kellyrbaker says:

      Amen, Aimee! I hope people can find freedom when they think of this figurative woman. Thanks for the feature! Many blessings on your ministry!

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