In 2 Corinthians 6:14 (KJV), Paul the apostle warned believers to avoid being “unequally yoked” with nonbelievers. He used the image of two oxen—one strong, the other weak—harnessed together to pull a plow. Every farmer at the time knew what the outcome would be: the weaker animal invariably set the pace. The stronger animal, trying to remain in step with its partner, will not pull to its full potential.
Issues of salvation aside, the same is true of married partners: inequality of character will limit both people. A lazy husband will tax an industrious woman to destruction. An untrustworthy wife keeps an honest man from finding success. The excellent woman must have an excellent man at her side. He must be incredibly secure and truly generous. He is not only willing to let her find fulfillment beyond him, but he encourages and affirms her doing so. He praises her, openly declaring, “Many daughters have done nobly, but you excel them all” (31:29).
This man is worth a second look, fellow husbands. Maybe it is just male ego on my part, but I am convinced that a significant reason this “excellent wife,” who was worth more than precious jewels, found fulfillment in her role as wife, mother, business-woman, investor, hostess, and friend of the needy was that her husband supported and affirmed those qualities in her. He found delight in her activities. He encouraged her to be the best mother possible, to reach out to others, to become all that God created her to be.
For women who are blessed with a partner like that, motherhood is a glory, not a grind.
From Living the Proverbs by Charles R. Swindoll, copyright © 2012. Reprinted by permission of Worthy Inspired., an imprint of Hachette Book Group, Inc.
Used with permission. All rights reserved.