Background: I frequently share some of the things my children say that I find funny. My oldest son when he was probably 2 or 3 began telling what he thought of my outfits. He would say, “don’t wear that”, or “why do you have than on?” Apparently I’m not the only one with kids that are particular about how their mommy looks. I had a friend tell me a few weeks ago that her 2 year old told her that her hair was a hot mess.
When our little ones say those things to us, we may brush it off because they are too little to know what is fashionable, and we’re grown, we know what looks good on us. But what about when our peers and those we look up to say those things about us. At what point do you take it as advice and at what point do you do you regardless of what they say?
v3 Give not your strength to [loose] women, nor your ways to those who and that which ruin and destroy kings.
This part of the passage is a mother talking to her son who is a prince. It applies to us in that we should not give our attention to the words or actions of people who’s intent is to hurt us. We know who they are because they engage in speech and activities that degrade others and themselves.
v26 She opens her mouth in skillful and godly Wisdom, and on her tongue is the law of kindness [giving counsel and instruction].
These are the kinds of people we should be listening to. Their words are skillfully delivered and are followed by instruction.
v27 She looks well to how things go in her household, and the bread of idleness (gossip, discontent, and self-pity) she will not eat.
Discontent and self-pity, she will not eat. If these are the things you feel after interacting with someone, there’s a problem. And the scripture clearly says you will not partake or participate in that. There’s also a problem if you don’t actually interact with someone awkward or self conscious. That is an internal problem. Search yourself and ask God why do you feel that way around certain people. It may simply be that you aren’t at your best at that time, it happens to all of us. We can’t be glamorous all the time. But if you consistently feel less than when around certain people, find a true P31 to counsel you, there may be deeper, unresolved issues that make you feel the way you.
v25 Strength and dignity are her clothing and her position is strong and secure;
This is what we must wear at all times. It has nothing to do with the material on your body but what you have on the inside. Strength and dignity, or confidence, makes any outfit, hairdo, shoes, whatever, look good! You have to be confident, this is where your strength and security in yourself lies. It’s not threaded into your clothing or weaved into your hair. Your strength, dignity, security in yourself, your confidence is on the inside. And like a muscle, it too must be exercised in order to get bigger, thus making you stronger.
v30 Charm and grace are deceptive, and beauty is vain [because it is not lasting], but a woman who reverently and worshipfully fears the Lord, she shall be praised!
Now, this verse is not saying that beauty is unnecessary. This is clear because the passage speaks of the fine things that the P31 makes for herself. But what it does say is not to major on it, because over time, beauty does fade and this is natural. It fades on a daily basis, think about how you look first thing in the morning and before you go to bed. Faded. So don’t major on beauty, use it wisely, but don’t depend on it, depend on God.
v22 She makes for herself coverlets, cushions, and rugs of tapestry. Her clothing is of linen, pure and fine, and of purple [such as that of which the clothing of the priests and the hallowed cloths of the temple were made].
We should wear nice things and even make our home look beautiful. And how we dress should be of good quality. How much we spend and the name on the clothing is not as important as how we look and feel in them. Now we don’t want to be that women mentioned in v3 that destroys kings, you know what I’m saying. But we want to represent ourselves in a way that would attract or keep a king.
v24 She makes fine linen garments and leads others to buy them;
If people are complimenting you or biting your style, then you’re doing alright. If they are complimenting you and saying, “I wish I could wear that”, your confidence is on a high that day cause you wore something others were too afraid or not confident enough to wear. Rock it girl!
v10 A capable, intelligent, and [b]virtuous woman—who is he who can find her? She is far more precious than jewels and her value is far above rubies or pearls.
What it all boils down to is that you are worth more than fine jewels, you are worth more than the clothes or hairstyle you wear, you are worth more than the words people try to attach to you. You are capable, intelligent, virtuous and excellent above all other women. When you settle this in your soul, you’ll know the difference between advice and an insult when it comes to how you look.
References: Proverbs 31: 3,10,22,24-27,30