Her husband is known in the gates, when he sitteth among the elders of the land.
This man who is the husband of our Virtuous Example was known in the gates. He sat with [possibly was an associate of] the elders. They knew him. He had influence. respect in society.
I do not believe that this little slice of information was arbitrarily placed in Proverbs 31. This lady's virtuous efforts were not lost to those around her. The community noticed. Other woman spoke highly of her to their own husbands [perhaps even the elders' wives]. Though she did not strive to bring attention to herself, perhaps even the men noticed her when she was in the market. her kindness. generosity. gentleness. neatness. helpfulness. They knew that the man married to her had to be at least as good. Her virtue brought him respect.
If you see a lady who is truly a lady, do you not have at least a measure of respect for her husband simply because of her virtue? I do.
So, I am encouraged to realize that, though it is not voiced to me frequently, I can know that others do [indeed!] observe how I live. train my children. dress my family. treat other people. how willing I am to help. how helpful my children are. how respectful I am towards my husband as well as general authority.
But this encouragement also challenges me! to truly strive to live a virtuous life. If I hear a compliment about my husband, I can know that my life had some small part of that. If others can know and speak well of my husband, then at least part of my assignment as a woman is on the right track! and I can be reminded to pray and beg a merciful God for His hand to produce virtue in my life.
Does this encourage you? I have nothing to boast of, but knowing that certain people think highly of my husband does bring a measure of fulfillment to what can become the mundane. and also gives a resolve to my spirit to seek Him every day. to plead with the Holy God to live through me even more fully.
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Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.