Category Archives: Faith

Proverbs 31 Woman: The Wife & Mom I Want to Be

Since starting my new position as Domestic Engineer for our family, I haven’t found my groove. I am really struggling to find purpose, meaning, and worth in this new life. While I am a home body, I have never been particularly motivated to do any (like ANY) chores, planning, or crafts outside of my own random ideas. Since I had no mom friends, I looked to mom bloggers for ideas on how to be an excellent mother and wife, while also living a fulfilling and meaningful life.

I’ve been seeing lots of posts about “Being A Proverbs 31 Woman” so I figured, I’d crack open my Bible and check out this passage (Proverbs 31:10-31). I was impressed. The description of a Godly woman in Proverbs 31 is the PERFECT woman and wife. She is a supporter of her husband, a provider for her family, charitable and loving, but also strong and empowered.

This is a woman who is a great model for not only Christian wives, but all wives and mothers. This ideal woman is a far cry from the mousey, subservient one that I’ve always envisioned when pastors and Bible study groups discuss Godly women. She is someone who I would love to know and aspire to be. This passage is truly a turning point for me on my spiritual journey.

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10 Virtues of a Proverbs 31 Woman from avirtuouswoman.org

I had avoided churches and religion since I was a teenager. I never quite felt that I fit in or that the messages taught were even applicable to my life. Understanding and believing in God, Jesus, and the Holy Ghost, and salvation through Jesus’ atoning sacrifice were easy to swallow and understand. Teachings of life-living and the dreaded “when you’re married” lessons were where they lost me. What 15-year-old wants to be submissive and silent to a hypothetical husband?

In my home growing up, my parents’ marriage was unhealthy and abusive. I had seen a wife who was combative, resentful, bitter, unforgiving, and broken. My model of marriage and family was not anything near the fantasy tales of biblical relationships. The way I had seen it, marriage and family was an “every man for himself” kind of game. My interest and enthusiasm for church and faith deteriorated as my health did, at the same time that life at home had truly become a war zone.

Here I am, 3 years into motherhood, desperately wishing that I knew how to be a loving wife, mother, and productive Keeper-of-the-Home. I’d shied away from potential mom friends since I was pregnant. All were nice, and though we shared experiences like young motherhood, breastfeeding, and locale, there was no “spark” or potential for a lasting friendship.

The few early twenties moms like myself don’t share my holistic and homesteader ideals, but at the same time “older” moms treat me like a child, a project that needs guidance and OBVIOUSLY can’t be doing a good job because of her youth. I needed to expand my horizons and seek fellowship with moms and families that I can share experiences with and seek guidance from. But where are these mystical unicorns of families? We live in rural suburbia, where people work, watch high school football, and go to church!

Here in Fallbrook, there is a whole section of town saturated with churches: Lutheran, Catholic, Episcopalian, Mormon, and 3 Baptist churches, mostly on the same street. Since joining the LDS church, I have met so many moms and wives that embody the Proverbs 31 woman. I love that the Church encourages equal partnership between husband and wife. Now, I am surrounded by families that exemplify unity, shared responsibilities, and place value on homemaking and motherhood.

Am I a Proverbs 31 woman yet? No, not really. My house is messy, I’m exhausted with pregnancy and chasing Autumn around. I am, however, more confident in my abilities in the home and more driven to be an equal partner with my husband. I still strive to be a Proverbs 31 woman, not *for* my husband or anyone else, but for myself.

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SOAP and Scripture Study

“Read your scriptures!” this statement is probably the 2nd most common admonition in the LDS Church (second to “pray always”). When I was considering baptism and a SUPER new convert, I read my scriptures nearly around the clock. One day, about halfway through 1 Nephi, I realized that even though I had read the pages, I could barely describe the events, let alone the spiritual significance of Lehi’s family fleeing Jerusalem. I knew I needed to find a better method for actually studying my scriptures; the message and personal meaning needed to break through.

SOAP

A quick Pinterest search for “Scripture Study” will reveal countless posts on flash cards, study guides, and Bible Journaling (which is awesome and totally on my list of things to try), but one suggestion pops up frequently: SOAP.

What? What does soap have to do with scriptures or studying? SOAP is an acronym: Scripture, Observation, Application, and Prayer/Ponder. SOAP is a great tool to break down important passages and verses that just stick out to you. Let’s see it in action…

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Scripture: What is the verse/passage that you are struck by?

“I will go and do the things which the Lord hath commanded.”—1 Nephi 3:7

Observation: What is happening? Why does this stick out to you?

Nephi follows Heavenly Father’s commandments, even though the task is hard and he is discouraged by his brothers

Application: How does this verse apply to my life?

The commandments given by Heavenly Father to His church and Saints can seem overwhelming and unattainable. I know that we are never asked to do more than we can; we must try to follow the commandments, even when we don’t think we can.

Prayer/Ponder: Pray on the passage, ponder-ize its meaning and how you can incorporate the scripture into your life. Get personal, honest, and on your knees before Heavenly Father

Heavenly Father,
Thank you for the blessings of your words through the scriptures. I want to be more courageous and valiant in my testimony. Help me to stand for my faith and follow your commands without hesitation. Let the Spirit flourish in my heart that I may hear your promptings and act in faith. Help me to walk in righteousness so that I may always have the companionship of the Holy Ghost. In the name of your son, Jesus Christ, amen.

Hit the (Good) Book

SOAP works for all forms of scripture study, not just in the Book of Mormon, as shown here. You don’t have to get crazy deep with it, but being true and honestly reflecting on what the verses mean to YOU will make your study more meaningful, help you memorize, and fulfill the purpose of having God’s word on Earth: to learn.

SOAP can be adapted to “normal” study as well. I don’t have a fancy acronym for secular applications, but using the basic premise of Read, Summarize, Apply, and Reflect can help make any topic (even in math!) sink in a little deeper with some critical thinking.

Do you have a study method (faith-based or not) that helps you think critically and more deeply about reading materials? Do you struggle with reading comprehension or other barriers that a study method has helped with? Share your ideas!