Monday, July 22, 2013

Thirty-one: True Beauty

(This is the 10th of ten posts in this series.)

 25 She is clothed with strength and dignity, and she laughs with no fear of the future. 26 When she speaks, her words are wise, and kindness is the rule when she gives instructions. 27 She carefully watches all that goes on in her household and does not have to bear the consequences of laziness. 28 Her children stand and bless her. Her husband praises her: 29 "There are many virtuous and capable women in the world, but you surpass them all!" 30 Charm is deceptive, and beauty does not last; but a woman who fears the LORD will be greatly praised. 31 Reward her for all she has done. Let her deeds publicly declare her praise.

Proverbs 31: 25-31 NLT

It's finished. I actually finished a writing project. This personal 'dig' into the verses of Proverbs 31 has been so important for me.  I needed to shake off some dusty, myopic teaching about this chapter from years past. But the most pressing need was to silence the annoying little voice in my head that tells me nothing I write is of any real value anyway, so why bother? I know it seems like a little thing but, believe me, this was an epic battle! It took me four months to write ten blog posts! Of course there was study and reading, but there were looooong stretches of time in between posts. (I refer you to my earlier statement about the annoying little voice in my head)  I'm no Beth Moore, but I am who God made me to be, called to share what He's given me with the women of Crossroads...and with you! 

In the last seven verses of Proverbs 31, God shows us His definition of true beauty.  It's vastly different from our culture's unattainable, airbrushed ideals. In verses 25 through 27, He tells us what is beautiful in His eyes:  strength and dignity... fearlessly facing the future... speech filled with wisdom and kindness...watchful care over our households.  Isn't it interesting that every one of the qualities He calls praiseworthy comes from His Presence in our lives? We can't manufacture virtue, He does it.  It flows out of our fear (deep reverence and respect) of the Lord.  That is so liberating! It frees us from all the box-checking and rule-following, and trying to make ourselves 'virtuous'.  I
f everything My Heavenly Father calls beautiful comes from His Presence in my life, then the only thing on my to do list is to know Him more, trusting Him to make my life...Beautiful.  

Prayer for Today: Father, thank you for this beautiful picture of a woman who makes YOU her lifetime pursuit.  Help me to zealously guard my time with You, knowing our time together gives me everything I need.  In Jesus Name, Amen. 

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