Friday, October 3, 2014

|31 Days| More Precious Than Jewels

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An excellent wife who can find? She is far more precious than jewels. Proverbs 31:10 

The above photo was something I taped in my Bible as a high school girl. I loved that the image provided a contrast between the beauty of a woman versus the beauty of jewels and worldly treasures. One thing that you may not know about this special passage of Scripture that we now refer to as the Proverbs 31 woman is that it is an acrostic. This part of the Bible was written in Hebrew, and my footnotes say that it was most likely written as an alphabet acrostic in order to "show that this woman's character runs the whole range of excellence." {ESV Study Bible} The successive use of the alphabet's letters would have been something that the original readers would immediately notice. They understood the Scriptures and knew that each word was intentional and useful for teaching. 

As a single woman, a natural temptation would be to read this verse and think that it does not apply to me. I mean, it says an excellent wife. And I'm not even a girlfriend. Huh. But the thing is that this verse is, in fact, meant for all women. When we read this verse, we are not to become frustrated, thinking that we cannot live up to this woman, but rather encouraged to pursue the virtues of one incredible gal.

As a self-proclaimed grammar nerd, the adjectives are what jump out to me here. Excellent means outstanding, a cut above the rest. Precious describes something that is of great value. Another definition states that it is a "term of address used to a beloved person." Sisters, regardless of our marital status, we are precious in the sight of the Lord. He made us and loves us. Every day He is in the process of redeeming us. And He wants us to know that when we seek Him above all else, we are made more and more like Him. In being made like Him, we are ascribed greater value to His kingdom. 

In this you rejoice, though now for a while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith-more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire-may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 
- 1 Peter 1:6-7

For my single and married friends alike, know that whatever you are going through right now is of use to the Father. He can use anything to make us precious like jewels. He gives treasures out of darkness and works to redeem even the ugliest of paths. So whether you feel excellent or precious, know that He is working on your behalf to do what only He can do-bring good out of the mess. We often do not feel excellent or precious, because when life takes a different turn, we doubt the goodness of who God is. But His path is always better-even when it is full of fire. A genuine gold is only proved genuine when the fire strips away the impurities and reveals the true beauty of the metal. So our faith is only proved genuine when the Lord takes away all things that keep us from Him. 

So, friends, are we willing to go through the fire and be proved genuine before Him? Do we have what it takes to be made into that excellent and precious woman? Lord, let it be so.

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