Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Perfect Woman

In our Sunday school class we are studying Proverbs 31, "The Virtuous Woman". I used to hate this chapter because I never thought that I could "measure up" to her. I believed that I had to do all the things that she does, or I wouldn't be what God wanted me to be....the "Perfect Woman". Oh how I tried. It seemed like I would be able to master one area and as soon as I tried to add another trait, I would mess up in the area that I thought I had just mastered. So, I would get really down on myself. A few months later, I would try again and it seemed like I was doing great until I tried to do something more. Then, I felt like an even bigger failure. I lived on such a huge guilt trip...a trip that I put myself on. All of that began to change in 2010 when my physical health began to get so bad. It became impossible for me to do many of the things that are contained in Proverbs 31. No matter how much I would have loved to be able to do them, I could not. There was no way that I could plant a garden. It was hard enough to take care of the garden areas that I already had. If it wasn't for the help of my husband and our daughter, there would be nothing but weeds. There was no way that I was able to make clothing and coverings for my family, let alone to sell to others. And there was no way that I would be able to stay up at night and get work done, I have to take a nap every day just to be able to function. When I had to give up doing the things that I once had no trouble doing, when I had to give up doing the things that I loved to do, when I had to give up and surrender all to the LORD, that is when He was finally able to get a hold of my heart and mind. I felt like the biggest failure in the world. I felt like God hated me and was out to punish me for some reason. I felt horrible...until the Holy Spirit was allowed to work in my thoughts. He showed me that I am nothing, but that Jesus is everything. He showed me that my attitude was the biggest hinderance to my life. God doesn't want perfection, He already has it. God doesn't want me to try to be perfect, because I already am. (And so are you, if you have accepted Jesus Christ as your personal Saviour.) As soon as I accepted Jesus, I became a new creature. Gal. 2:20, "I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me." I am in Jesus and He is in me. When God looks upon me, He does not see the old me, He sees Jesus. He is perfect! So, why is Proverbs 31 even in the Bible if we aren't suppose to try to perfect like the virtuous woman? Well, I believe that the Lord wants us women to realize that we cannot be "perfect" without Him and that once we have Him, we are perfect. There is nothing more that is needed> So, does that mean that we don't have to be virtuous? Or that we can just be whatever type of woman we want to be? NO!!! It means that we can be whatever God wants us to be. Yes, I should continue to try to be virtuous, but I don't have to be "perfect" in and of myself. As I wrote in one of my previous blogs, I have learned that I can only do what God enables me to do. That does not make me better nor does it make me worse. If I yield my all to the Lord and allow Him to use me as He desires, then He will. It may not be what I desire, but who cares, so long as it is what God desires. I was on such a pity party last year when I felt like my life was over. However, the Holy Spirit made me to realize that it's not over, it is just different. My life could be a whole lot more limited. It doesn't matter what I can and cannot do physically. It matters that I am doing all that I do in God's strength and for His glory. I think of christian women who cannot do anything but pray. Are they not virtuous? Of course they are. What truly makes a "perfect", virtuous woman??? Jesus Christ and Him only.

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