Just the other day, we read in Proverbs that “a man who finds a wife finds a good thing.” But, today’s chapter tells us what type of wife is NOT so good...and it tells us twice! The various translations of verses 9 and 19 use words like quarrelsome, angry, contentious, nagging, complaining, fretful, ill-tempered, and even brawling. This woman is referred to as the Proverbs 21 woman (not to be confused with the Proverbs 31 woman whom we shall meet at the end of the month). This woman is controlling.
She must have her way. She gets upset when she doesn’t get it. And, she lashes out in many different ways. She may shout at the top of her lungs, or she may whisper sweet venom in your ear. She may manipulate you behind your back, then pretend to be innocent. She may give you the silent treatment and withhold her affection. She may “bad-mouth” you to anyone with ears to hear. She’ll try to isolate you from others, because she can’t stand the thought of you giving attention to anyone but her. She’ll undermine you in front of your own kids, taking your power away as a father. She’ll ultimately make your life miserable, and you’ll be a stranger in your own home.
Red flags! There are red flags for this sort of behavior, so young men must pay close attention. The indicators become more pronounced with the passage of time. And, unless a young woman sees these indicators within herself, while allowing the Holy Spirit to transform her, they will grow like bitter weeds and choke out whatever chance at true happiness she may ever have.