I really don’t like that Proverbs 31 lady. She is just so… together. Her life is perfectly organized and well managed. She has everything figured out. And everyone just loves her. She is not a normal woman- she stands out big time.
I want to like her, really. The problem is when I look at her I see all of my inadequacies. I see the inevitable dust on the shelves and the dog hair that reappears the second I put up the broom. I see the imperfect relationships in my life. I see my inability to master anything half as well as her.
So instead of looking up to Proverbs 31 lady, I bitterly resent her. I have this vision of her in my mind. She’s totally gorgeous- no acne, skinny, flawless. She’s balancing a quiet and clean baby on the hip with one hand, sewing clothes the other, and dinner is cooking in the background (and you can bet it won’t be burned!). Ugh.
But the closer I grow with God, the more I can stop picking at my flaws and imperfections. I can start to understand that I am enough, exactly as I am. And it has nothing to do with my performance or perfection. It has everything to do with God being the utmost priority in my life. More than a clean house or an employee of the month award is my relationship with God. When He is my priority, He spills out into all of the other areas of my life.
Every single day I need God’s grace to save me, heal me, and make me perfect in His sight. It is God’s grace that gives me a purpose, not my performance or perfection.
So maybe I can find peace with my friend in Proverbs 31 when I look at her with this light. She isn’t a checklist of who I ought to be, but a reflection of who I can be when God’s love is my first priority.
God wants us to be so filled with Him that others cannot possibly look at us without seeing Him. His love should change us and make us stand out. Others should see something different about us. Just like Proverbs 31, we should stand out.
God’s love for us is what makes us stand out. Despite my shortcomings, God chooses to love me. I can extend love and grace to others because love and grace have been extended to me.
We love because He first loved us. (1 John 4:19)