Monday, January 16, 2012

Strength & Dignity Are Her Clothing; She Smiles at the Future

I will be honest with you, I've been wanting to blog for a few weeks now but it goes without saying  the Lord continues to work in my heart.
A few weeks ago a friend of mine shared  the Pinterest website with me.  I will tell you I've been hooked ever since.  I love the new recipes, DIY projects and home decor shared on that site, but one day I came across this the posting of Proverbs 31:25, "She is clothed in strength & dignity, and she laughs without fear of the future."  I began to really think about what that meant in my life.  Do I reflect that attitude in my heart? To be frankly honest with you, I came up short. I was struggling with being a woman who "laughs without fear of the future."  New American Standard translates it, "she smiles at the future." English Standard Version translates it, "she laughs at the time to come."
I began a word study on "strength" & "dignity" in the Scriptures and I was digging away and looking up verses. 
Prov 118:14 "The Lord is my strength and song"

Psalm 18:32 "The God who girds me with strength & makes my way blameless"

Psalm 37:39 "But salvation of the righteous is from the Lord;
He is their strength in time of trouble.."

Psalm 84:5 " How blessed is the man who strength is in You,
in whose heart are highways to Zion"

Psalm 73:26 "But God is the strength of my heart & portion forever"

Dignity; Dignified means "quality or state of worthy of"
"esteem or respect"

I Tim 3:11 "Women must likewise be dignified"
Titus 2:3 "Older women likewise are to be reverent ( also means dignified) in their behavior"
I will be honest... it has been hard to smile or even laugh at the future lately.  Doesn't take much to start to worry.  Listen to talk radio.  Watch the nightly news and it will put you in a complete outrage of what's happening to this country or the world we live in. For some all you have to do is look at your bank account when your monthly bills are due and "smiling at the future" isn't the emotion that stirs up inside of you. 
How do I become this woman who is filled with "strength and dignity" and "smiles at the future." Do I conjure up this strength from my own might? How do I begin to be dignified? These qualities are not anything I can produce. I can try but you will come up short.  These qualities are given to me by faith and by the grace of God who works in my heart and in my life.  I am strong because Christ gives me His strength.  I am dignified because HE gives me the desire to be dignified and the wisdom of His words.  I am nothing without Christ.  It's His righteousness that I am clothed with not with anything I can produce or fabricate.  The main ingredient of this Proverbs 31 woman is that she trusts in her Eternal Groom. She can trust Him because He is Sovereign and He is good.  No matter what the balance is in my checking account, whether my children believe or my loved one has cancer doesn't change the character of my good and caring God who is for my good and His glory.  I am clothed with HIS STRENGH and I am drenched in HIS DIGNITY so that I can SMILE AT THE FUTURE and rest in His grace.

"I will rejoice greatly in the Lord,
My soul will exult in my God;
For He has clothed me with garments of salvation,
He has wrapped me with a robe of righteousness,
As a bridegroom decks himself with a garland,
And as a bride adorns herself with her jewels."
Isaiah 61:10