Proverbs 31:30 Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;
but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
This truth is more obvious than ever in the modern world, with not only cosmetics but cosmetic surgery, not to mention Photoshop. There are countless women with, at times, striking physical beauty who are paraded before us by various media, but the sad impression is that for the majority it is no more than a shell. Interestingly, I know some women who do fear the Lord who have steadily gotten more beautiful with age. I can think of one off hand who is currently beautiful indeed, but I saw a picture of her as a young mother and I almost had to wonder what her husband saw in her! However, he too is someone who fears the Lord, and he also has gotten better looking with age! This is a reminder of something the Lord told Samuel long ago: “The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” (1 Samuel 16:7) Peter (a married man) put it this way: “Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.” (1 Peter 3:3-4) It can be very difficult to gain independence from the world’s standards, and self-image problems are a major issue today. However when by the help of the Holy Spirit we switch over to God’s standards, everyone benefits.
I had a student show up for an exam last year wearing a remarkably perceptive T-shirt. It said, “Men fall in love through their eyes, but women fall in love through their ears.” There is a lot of truth in that! Whereas anyone can make poor decisions, I’d say that women have the advantage when it comes to choosing a good partner. I personally was blessed incredibly in that area. I’ll concede that my wife first “caught my eye,” as the saying goes, but it was the depth that I found in her through talking about a wide variety of things that convinced me this was the one with whom I wanted to spend my life. Good decision! She has never been big on makeup, and her skin has benefited to the point that she is the envy of many of her lady friends. However, the inner beauty Peter spoke of radiates from her to the point that many are drawn to her. She is careful of her appearance but that is not her top priority, and she certainly doesn’t have much to worry about. I am blessed beyond measure, and I give God praise and thanks.
Father, I’ve thought for a long time that this chapter was talking about Cathy. Thank You for Your incredible grace. She’s been going through a lot physically/medically, and there’s more on the immediate horizon. I pray Your full healing for her, but more than that, I pray Your anointing, the full assurance of Your presence, so that Your peace may fill her and radiate from her, drawing all who see her to You, for their salvation and Your glory. Thank You. Hallelujah!