I love sitting at the feet of the Proverbs 31 woman. Pondering and listening. Learning and receiving. There is a desire set deep within me to know her – to understand her heart. Each time I read over the scriptures defining her character, my heart is enveloped in a fervent longing. A longing to become. To embrace. To understand more fully.
One of the things I admire most is her clothing..
Strength and dignity are her clothing… ~Proverb 31:25
When I consider our literal clothing – I think of what we choose to wear. What we choose to go about our day in. What we choose to live in. And how we choose to present ourselves. In fact our clothing can reveal a lot about our preferences and character.
There’s the hipster look..
..and so on.
All of these styles have the ability to make a statement. To give forth an image that we choose to present. They can help us to define some of the edges of the person we are choosing to be.
Her clothing is strength and dignity.
“Dignity is a strong, chosen, deliberate way of life, the result of the totality of a person’s choices and worldview.” – Rosalie de Rosset.
Just like our literal clothing, I believe we also choose our spiritual garments. When we became followers of Christ, we were baptized into Him. We were clothed in Him.
For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. ~Galatians 3:26
Therefore, we have already been given the garments of strength and dignity, of godliness and purity – but I believe we must choose daily to put them on and walk in them.
We must make the choice to present the image of Christ.
As I’ve been praying about this and asking for wisdom and revelation, God has laid some practical things on my heart for how I am to daily clothe myself in this way…
1. Understand my value in Christ
My value lies in the very fact that I am a daughter of the living God; the Creator of the heavens and the earth.
Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God. ~John 1:12
I am His child. My reflection in His eyes is one of great worth. This is key. If I don’t take hold of this, the rest is obsolete.
Remember who I am and who He is as I walk through the daily motions of life – then choose to walk in that identity He has given me.
Remember His truth.
Much of Israel’s defeat in the Old Testament was due to their lack of remembrance. They forgot God; forgot truth; forgot His miracles; forgot His loving-kindness.
But you shall remember the Lord your God…, that He may confirm His covenant which He swore to your fathers, as it is this day. It shall come about if you ever forget the Lord your God and go after other gods and serve them and worship them, I testify against you today that you will surely perish. (Deuteronomy 8:18-19)
3. Make my choices according to my convictions rather than my feelings
My feelings are about as consistent as my 2 year old’s sleeping habbits. They can’t be trusted. If I make decisions based on what I feel, my choices and consequently my character will become inconsistent, unpredictable and unstable.
However, the word of God is unchanging. If I resolve to make my choices based on the truth in God’s Word, my character will remain steady and pure.
How can a young man keep his way pure? By keeping it according to Your word. (Psalm 119:9)
4. Do not look to culture (Christian or the world) to define morality
Culture is advancing in it’s corruption. Morality will decline if it is measured it.
The only tool necessary to measure my own right standing is Jesus.
5. Do not be ignorant of the enemy
I need to be aware of his schemes. I need to be able to discern when he is attempting to penetrate my thoughts so I may take them captive to the obedience of Christ and not be led into sin through his temptations.
Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.
6. Be careful how I choose to spend my time
I can choose to spend my time in ways to cultivate dignity or cultivate distraction. I can choose to waste it or embrace it.
Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil. ~Ephesians 5:16
7. Maintain a healthy and reverent fear of God
Unfortunately, a healthy fear for God is missing from many of today’s churches and christian culture. Reverent fear of Him leads us to pursue more knowledge of Him. To be better acquainted with who He is that we may live, love, serve and obey Him according to truth.
“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.” (Proverb 1:7)
This then leads us further into godliness.
“seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence” (2 Peter 1:3)
These are the garments that I am choosing, learning and longing to walk in.