Monday, November 30, 2009

A Proverb's Woman Break

Something Jane said made me think of something.

Those who have been with me for a long time know my view of SOS and the Proverbs 31 woman.

Essentially, I feel, that many parts of the church have it all wrong in teaching the Proverb's 31 woman. They use it as a box to confine women when really it is a proclamation of what all women can do when their husband's trust and uphold them. And it is a proclamation to husbands to learn to trust godly women.

Some churches use the Proverbs 31 Woman to heap shame upon women who don't measure up. Many women feel beat down by life and sometimes even by the church. Then to add scathing preaching on how women don't measure up with Pr 31 as the proof text is an improper use of the Word of God.

My belief is that before anyone can really accept the words of Proverbs 31, they need to be healed and delivered. This applies to both men and women.
Men who have issues and wounded areas concerning women really need to get healed. And preachers who have these issues need to refrain from preaching Pr 31 until they get healed. Otherwise they will preach condemnation and shame, taking out their woundedness on women who don't deserve it. May God pour healing on all such men.

The Song of Solomon is the perfect healing book to prepare the heart of a woman to become a Pr 31 woman. Eventually, once going all the way through SOS, I was going to go through Proverbs 31:10-31.

But Jane brings up the point that women who are called to be relief workers need to be release, upheld, and sent out, by the church. And if they are not, these women need to turn to God alone who can release, uphold, and send them out (not her words, but my best paraphrase of what I think she is saying.).

This is in keeping with the words concerning the P 31 Woman. She is defined as one who extends her hand to the poor.

And who are the poorest of the poor?

Oppressed women from ravaged, war torn nations receiving the brunt of the hatred of men.

The church is called to reach those women with healing, deliverance, and whatever protection we can muster up.

If the men will not rise up and do it, this does not mean the women can't. They need to be sent out. And nobody has to wait until I get done with my series on SOS before they act on Proverbs 31.

As a side note. I look upon Proverbs 31 in a similar way as I do SOS. I see that the Pr 31 woman can be an individual woman, all the women of the church, or even the Bride of Christ including the men of the church. Each of us must do with these passages in the Bible as we feel the leading of the spirit.
Paul calls us the Body of Christ, one may be a hand, another an eye, etc. In the church, some are called as relief workers. Not all of us, but definitely some of us. And it is not just men who are called to it. More women than the wives of men called to relief word are call to it. Single women can be called to it. Married women who have husbands that don't feel called to it, and/or aren't even Christian can be called to it.
It is a crime that parts of the Church have worked long and hard to dissuade women from pursuing relief work and other things God has called them to.
For those women who have been prevented from pursuing the call of God in their lives, may they first receive healing and forgiveness. May they forgive themselves. And may they work to get into a position to receive God's call again and act upon it, know that God's blessing rests upon it.


JaneDoeThreads said...

Just wanted to let you know, Thank you for posting this, it was an answer to many prayers of mine...a confirmation, that is.

And I'm in prayer about this now, because I am going to go into relief work, of some kind, not sure where, but I'm leaning towards it...starting here in my community. I'm not waiting for the 'church' or for my husband anymore,

the needs are just too great and I'm tired of putting up with the enemy using all sorts of obstacles and hindrances [including the church]. Bottom line for me right now is over resources--

but God is able and that is what I am standing on, so I picked up where I left off on starting my business [which was to pay my loans plus assist in aiding women and NGOs that work with women]. For several years my husband has done a lot to 'sabatoge' any efforts on my part but I am not going to give up--I know its the enemy, always has been, and I am learning to just 'close my ears' to the patriarchal bunk and set my face like a flint, so to speak.

It was fighting the 'internalizations' too that was hard but the more I read the Word, the more I see, that we are Called, to do good works in Love, not the opposite, living in a closed Rapunzel world.

And if doors are closed, I'll look for windows, and will Keep knocking.

Love, Jane

JaneDoeThreads said...



Muslim girl, in USA, converted to Christianity, being held hostage by Child Protective Services/Foster Care, being denied visitation from pastors, etc., to not 'offend' Islam,


SCROLL DOWN, A BIT, TO WHERE IT SAYS, Rifqa Bary In Solitary Confinement
The vise is tightening further on Rifqa Bary, the teenage girl who converted to Christianity from Islam and then fled to Florida from her Ohio home in fear for her life. Now she is in foster care in Ohio, in imminent danger of being returned to her family, and the Ohio authorities, at the command of the Barys’ lawyer, continue to isolate her.

Rifqa Bary has been in Ohio for well over a month and still there is no “approved visitation” list of friends who are allowed to see her. How can this be? How can it be that friends who request a visit, and whom Rifqa requests to visit, are repeatedly told that “there is no approved visitation list”? Is it not the very mission by objective of children’s services to protect the health and welfare of a child? Why has this one child in particular been denied visits from friends?


JaneDoeThreads said...





see story here as well:


"Some churches use the Proverbs 31 Woman to heap shame upon women who don't measure up. Many women feel beat down by life and sometimes even by the church. Then to add scathing preaching on how women don't measure up with Pr 31 as the proof text is an improper use of the Word of God.

My belief is that before anyone can really accept the words of Proverbs 31, they need to be healed and delivered. This applies to both men and women."

I think the healing will come when people interpret the scripture correctly.

Something Christians seem to have missed is that the Proverbs 31 woman had servents, either hired or owned servants. Verse 15 calls them "maidens." Church folk are comparing the work of a small business that is complete with employees to a lone housewife. And housewives have been running hard, trying to do the work of 3 or more people. From all they accomplished in a day when their was no electricity nor washing machines, sewing machines, etc. I would guess she had 5 household servants and another 5 employees in her business at a minimum. How sad that Christian women should be pressured and shamed into performing the work of 10 people! !

When we see that the Proverbs 31 woman clearly had help, it changes the whole meaning of the passage. She was an enterprising woman, whose husband treated her as an adult instead of as an ignorant child, like the husband authority doctrine encourages husbands to do today. Reading the passage correctly adds shades of meaning we wouldn't otherwise see, and also takes away the oppressive shades of meaning we have been taught. Getting it correct will free woemn to be all God has purposed them to be--including career women and women with ministries.

-Waneta Dawn

Mara Reid said...

You will get no arguement from me on that one, Waneta.

The Proverbs woman was the MANAGER. She WAS NOT the one being MANAGED.
As a side note, neither did she manage her husband. Neither husband or wife managed the other according to Pr 31. They partnered together and managed their own affairs.

Proverbs 31:10-31 contains a lot, a lot, a lot of information. And very little of it lines up with the way some preachers preach it.
I was only taking a break with this post and addressing something Jane said.

In addition, you may or may not know this, but in chapter one of Song of Solomon (SOS), the Beloved is oppressed by her brothers and made to work in their vineyard to the neglect of her own.
In the last chapter, her own vineyard is at her disposal and she has hired workers she pays. It also mentions Solomon's vineyard. But guess what. Solomon doesn't call on the Beloved to work in his vineyard. He also has hired laborers.

This is one of the reasons I look at SOS as a book of healing, stepping stones from oppression to becoming Proverbs 31 woman material.

If you have time to read my June 10th 2009 post, you'll see those scriptures laid out from the first and last chapters and an explanation of how I come to the above conclusion.

Just as many men don't know how to preach Pr 31 right, neither do they know how to preach SOS.

(A word of caution.
If you are offended by open talk about sex, don't bother reading posts from June 25th to August 13.
Many men believe SOS is ONLY about sex. And there are preachers out there who give R to X rated sermons on what they think SOS is about. I counter some of those teachings in many of the posts between June 25 and August 13. And just as they pull no punches, neither do I. I was, admittedly, angry at those male fantasy sex teachings so those posts are a bit of a venting. Thus this warning.)

Mara Reid said...

My June 10th post is called "First and Last Overview, SOS.