“She is clothed with strength and dignity;
she can laugh at the days to come.
She speaks with wisdom,
and faithful instruction is on her tongue.
She watches over the affairs of her household
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
Her children arise and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
“Many women do noble things,
but you surpass them all.”
Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;
but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
Honor her for all that her hands have done,
and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.”
Proverbs 31: 25-31, The Wife of Noble Character
We’ve all heard the Wife of Noble character passage from the sayings of King Lemuel, we’ve heard of amazing women who are a part of Proverbs 31 ministries, we are told as women, we are to aspire to become this type of women and eventual wife. But what exactly does it mean? What does it mean to be clothed in strength and dignity? What does it mean to laugh at the days to come and speak with wisdom? As women, it’s as if in every area of life we have a particular role to fill or mold to fit.
I believe being clothed in strength and dignity is not one thing. I don’t think it’s being a pastor’s wife and raising six children and baking the best apple pie in town. I don’t think it’s dressing a certain way, or praying a certain way, or appearing a certain way. I don’t believe it’s a career or a school or a ministry. I don’t believe you have to be at a certain point in your walk with Christ, know the Bible verse by verse, or have any qualifications — you don’t need to be perfect to be loved by Christ.
I believe being clothed in STRENGTH means each and every day armoring yourself with the love of the Lord and meditating on His word or in prayer to prepare yourself for anything that may come your way. Every day that we’re on this earth, there is a war being waged for your heart and soul, and CLOTHING yourself in STRENGTH is intentionally preparing yourself for said battle. Whether it’s a relationship, family struggles, finances or school, or even feeling distant from God — whatever your battle may be, know that God is your STRENGTH, so clothe yourself with His love and protection.
Being clothed in DIGNITY means waking up with an intentional and deliberate desire to be honest and open with the Lord no matter the circumstance. God sees and hears your every thought, every desire, and every weakness and loves you anyway. If you are struggling, tell Him. Seek Him! Don’t be afraid, for your Lord works in your favor. He always works for your good (Romans 8:28). Clothing yourself in dignity is being confident in your relationship with God, knowing that He is all you need, and knowing He is the one who provides all things. Dignity is knowing that you are not perfect, that you make mistakes, that you sin, and that you fall short BUT through Christ Jesus you are loved, forgiven, and made new anyway (2 Corinthians 5:17). Dignity is being able to hold your head high, walk in the light of the Lord, and be confident in the woman He made you to be.
You don’t have to have the white picket fence, the picturesque family, and the Pinterest life to be a wife of noble character. You don’t even need to be a wife! This passage is about so much more than the type of woman you should be once you get married. The Song of Songs depicts the beautiful union we can have not just with our spouse but with our Creator. Jesus is our bridegroom, so rejoice my fellow women! “For your Maker is your husband, the Lord of hosts is his name; and the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer, the God of the whole earth he is called” (Isaiah 54:7). Find your joy and hope and peace and love in the Lord. Know that you never have to look or act or be a certain way for the love of Christ. No matter the miry pit you may be facing today, know that your true love, your Lord Jesus, loves you and wants your heart more than anything.
I used to think that in order to lead ministry I had to look and act a certain way. I had to look and act and pray just like all the other women who’ve been raised in the church and have gone to Bible Study and Christian camps their whole lives. I began to doubt myself and doubt my ability to be a leader in the eyes of Christ. I didn’t believe I could ever be like those women. I had made too many mistakes, my list of sins was too long, and I could never live up to the standards of them. After praying and praying and diving into the word, I realized something. I didn’t need to be as pretty, or wear as nice of clothes, or pray as fluently, or have as flawless a story as anyone else to be loved by Jesus. I am loved. And so are you. So proclaim it today, sister! You are a dearly beloved! And you my darling, you are clothed in strength and dignity. You can speak wisdom and you can be a wife of noble character. You are enough and you are loved.
God bless you beauties!