"She has cast down many wounded, and all who were slain by her were strong men." (Proverbs 7:26)
The portrait of a foolish woman is painted in great detail in proverbs 7. Most presume the foolish woman presented here is the adulterous or promiscuous woman. We skip over this passage assuming it doesn't really speak to us.
However, as I was reading through this chapter I was surprised at how this verse relates to so many of us; not just the adulterous woman.
I love how God breathes a fresh word into old and familiar passages!
As was highlighted in chapter 5 of Biblical Womanhood in The Home by Nancy Demoss,
"although we may not be physically adulterous or promiscuous, most of us have unwittingly adopted some of the characteristics that ultimately could lead to the ruin and downfall of the men around us."
Nancy goes on to say:
"The Foolish woman can be an instrument of casting down many men. She may do so by means of sexual seduction (as the woman in proverbs 7), OR she may do so subtly, by means of discouragement, spiritual pride or intimidation."
Wow! What a sobering truth that:
"I could be the instrument of a man's undoing, no matter how strong he might be! Even men who are spiritually mature can be brought down, controlled, wounded, and destroyed--by a foolish woman."
As I reflect on my relationship with Tim and my role as a pastor's wife, the weight of this can be very challenging at times. There isn't a "rule book" given to Pastors' wives to know how to fulfill your pastor's wife duties, yet there is an unspoken one that exists. It can be difficult living in the tension of people's expectations of you and what the Bible calls us to.
As I think about the call God has on my husband's life as a pastor, I realize the huge part I play as his helpmate. It's sobering to think that I could intentionally or unintentionally "cast down" the mighty man God is creating and calling him to be. Not to mention, the effect I could have on his ministry and the calling he has been given. Wow! Talk about accountability! I can choose to be his cheerleader or the anchor that "cast him down."
Ultimately, it is my choice and one that I will have to give an account for.
Questions I often have to ask myself are: How do I build him up? How do I honor and respect him as the spiritual leader of our home? How do I honor him in front of others and behind closed doors? How am I at cheering him on and praying with and for him?
You may not be a pastor's wife, but you too are called to be your husband's helpmate. How are you honoring him, cheering him on and praying that God uses him in a mighty way? As you imagine yourself before the Lord one day, would you be considered a wise woman or a foolish woman?
I shudder at the thought of having to give an account for being a woman who "cast down" her husband.
Prayer: Lord, since the beginning of time, You have called us forth to be our husband's helpmate. Help us to rightly value this calling, especially as we live this out in a world that stands in direct opposition to You. Let us not underestimate the powerful role you have entrusted us with to speak life and not death into the ministry and or work of our husbands, lest we bring him down. May we always seek to be a pillar of hope and a source of encouragement to our husbands and in so doing, bring You glory and honor!
Melanie is married to Tim Barosh and they have 6 wonderful children. She also leads a homeschool community of Classical Conversations Inc in Montgomery TX. (www.Facebook.com/ClassicalConversationsMontgomery)