Pentecost +17 - Year B
A good and capable wife/woman is hard to find. This starting point makes it difficult to have any but a periodic female exemplar. It excuses much even as it is usually perceived as an accolade.
This proverb is testament to women having to work more than twice as hard to simply hold on to half the respect simply due any person.
Focus here on verses 23 and 31. Husbands/men can be counted among the public deciders simply because they are male. Wives/women show their competency and yet there is only a recommendation that they find personal praise sufficient, rather than public decision-making. Here it is recommended that she have a living wage for communal/household work (any work) and be electable/respected in the marketplace of ideas. Recommendations here are pats on the back rather than actual partnership in community affairs.
All the praises here heaped upon women turn out to be flattery, not serious participation in the decisions of life. And patriarchy, expressed today as capitalism, continues, co-opting women and children and poor men. G*D have mercy and help us see ourselves as we are seen so some modicum of hope might be held out for moving on from this stuck place.