Thursday, October 2, 2014

|31 Days| The Proverbs 31 Woman

Trustworthy, kind, good, hardworking, smart, business-minded, proactive, fit, generous, confident, prepared, crafty, compassionate, wise, caring, godly, diligent, gentle, meek, strong, faithful, and blessed. These are the adjectives that I have written in my Bible next to the passage of Scripture we will be diving into this month. Overwhelmed yet?!

When I lived in Mexico, I attended a Calvary Chapel church. Before I moved to Chihuahua, I had never heard of Calvary Chapel. However, I soon grew to love them. Calvary Chapel churches study the Bible verse by verse. There is something powerful about when we allow Scripture to just be Scripture and ask the Holy Spirit to speak to us through His word. This month, we will be looking at Proverbs 31:10-31 verse by verse. I hope and pray that the Lord uses His word to encourage you and to challenge you. It is living and active, and when you ask Him to use it to sharpen you, He will most assuredly do so.

There are a lot of myths about the Proverbs 31 woman that we hear all the time. Many of us grew up thinking that she was the perfect woman and had it all, so we might as well not try. Does this sound like an attitude the Lord wants us to have? May it not be so. The Proverbs 31 woman is "an ideal: a particular example of full-scale virtue and wisdom toward which the faithful are willing to be molded. It is not expected that any one woman will look exactly like this in every respect." {ESV Study Bible footnotes} Sisters, the Lord does not desire for us to strive for an unattainable ideal, but rather to learn from the characteristics of a woman who sought the Lord with every fiber of her being.

The first time I studied the Proverbs 31 woman was about ten years ago. I was a sophomore in high school, and our D-Group (I think that's what we called it back then) went through a study called Virtuous Reality by Vicki Courtney that was intended for college women. I remember being so fascinated with this Proverbs 31 woman, desiring to be made like her and imagining ideals of my future self while completing the Bible study homework each week. As I've grown in the last ten years, the Lord has shown me just how important it is to seek to be found faithful to Him. The Scripture passage in Proverbs 31 is not a checklist for the woman who wants to be found worthy, but rather a set of characteristics to embody and strive for through the power of the Holy Spirit. Let's seek to be known as women who love Him and not women who take pride in checking off a list of to-do's. He's worthy of our worship in spite of, and perhaps because of, our weaknesses.

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