“I’ve had enough!” The thought that stirred in my heart and then traveled out of my mouth as I spoke to the reflection staring back at me in the bathroom mirror.
I’ve had enough of this world, or should I say the “prince of this world” telling me what I should look like! I’m done listening to the lies!!! There are no perfect people; only people in progress to become more like Jesus. I sound like I am convinced of this, but to be honest I wrestle with that truth daily.
Everyday for the past 10 years (yes, you heard correct-10 years), I’ve struggled with trying to look like an image that is unattainable-only to be miserable…depleted and defeated at the end of everyday!
What is wrong with this world that a woman can’t age gracefully, sport her well-earned wrinkles, and appear in public make-up free-without being judged as an un-kept woman?!!! I have had enough of this futile thinking. Paul said it best-“The Wisdom of this world is foolishness in God’s sight.” (1 Corinthians 3:19)
Where are all the Proverbs 31 women? Might I suggest that they are hiding behind a hat, scarf, and a pair of sunglasses for fear someone might see them in all their natural glory. Or might they be a lot like me-hiding behind the wall built of lies that Satan sold and I accepted, for fear I couldn’t walk out the truth with true conviction.
Before I utter one more word, I want to make myself understood. I am in no way speaking out against women wearing make-up. Who doesn’t love a good shade of Bobbi Brown lipstick or the perfect black eye-liner cat eye! This goes much deeper than outward appearance. I am speaking out against the devil from Hell who spends countless hours whispering his good for nothing lies into the ears of God’s girls. It’s time we as God-fearing women (and girls) take our rightful and righteous stand-putting our armor on before we ever put on our air-brushed look.
I know first-hand that Satan has one too many women (and even far more teenage girls) in a choke hold gasping for air-suffocating under the pressure of striving for perfection that will never be attained in this imperfect world.
I’m still trying to understand why the conviction was so thick this morning as I stood gazing into mirror-it’s not like this is a new struggle for me. Truth be told, I’ve become accustomed to the struggle and accepted it as my norm. To many that may sound ridiculous-even ungodly, but for some that will sound extremely familiar.
Whatever the reason, God’s presence was way too real for me to ignore the prompting to stop what I was doing and go grab my Bible. I turned first to Proverbs 31:10-31; you’ve read the words and I am most certain you know the context, but is it possible we don’t know the lady with whom it refers? Is is possible that the lady in this text was intended to mirror the image of the lady that stands looking back at each and every one of us?
As I read the above passage, the words, “she laughs without fear of the future” seemed to rise off the page. For the first time, this woman became real to me. All this time I read this passage from the view point that this woman was the example of what I should be striving to become. I have spent the majority of my life striving to become, rather than resting and receiving. Don’t misunderstand, we need to have role models that speak and mirror the image of God. The Bible clearly states that we are to be imitators of Christ. But in this particular passage, there is a truth tucked within those verses that make it possible to imitate Christ.
It’s in the resting that we receive our true identity; one not defined by appearance, performance, or the world’s perception. True identity denies the foolishness of this world and rests in the faithfulness of the Creator. And that is how I believe that a Proverbs 31 woman can laugh without fear of the future! She laughs because she is less consumed with herself, and more consumed with loving those around her-thus imitating Christ.
I can’t remember the last time I laughed one of those “belly” laughs. Come to think of it, I can’t remember a time that I wasn’t spending valuable time trying to figure things out, instead of trusting that God already had it figured out. Maybe that’s the mystery that God tucked in between those pages for me this morning. The secret to true laughter starts with total trust-not in my ability, but in HIS Omniscience.
I want to laugh without fear of the future, to believe that I am fearfully and wonderfully made with or without make-up, and stand with true conviction that this world will one day pass away…Every knee will bow and confess that Jesus is Lord!
So, the next time I start to open the door to the enemy’s lies and invite him in, PLEASE remind me of these very words-“Charm is deceptive, and beauty if fleeting, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.”