Our guest poster today is Amanda who has my respect not only because she’s a woman of immense valor, but because she’s also a youth minister. ESHET CHAYIL!!!!
??Many are the women of proven worth, but you have excelled them all.?? ?? Proverbs 31:29 (NAB)
Upon reading Proverbs 31:29 I have a knee-jerk reaction to say, ??Surely I have not excelled them all. God could not be talking about me.?? Then comes the thought that not only have I not excelled other women, but that I can??t even be counted among the ??many?? women of proven worth. All at once I??ve disregarded this entire verse because I??m certain it doesn??t apply to me. Proverbs 31 must be talking about some mythical woman who doesn??t exist in my reality.
But what if, for just a second, we consider the possibility that Proverbs 31:29 could actually be referring to each and every one of us? Then what? Our worth isn??t proven because we are perfect or sinless. In fact, our worth isn??t proven by any thing we do. We can rise while it is still night and distribute food to the household (v.15), we can reach out to the poor (v.20), we can do all the things that the previous verses describe and still not have our worth proven. Our worth isn??t proved by what we do, it is proved by who we are. Our worth comes from God and shines forth in our character, by being virtuous and faithful women. When the going gets tough, we fall to our knees in prayer. We recognize that it is God who proves our worth time and time again. There are many women of proven worth because they realize their worth is not of their own doing, but God??s. When we stop trying to prove our own worth and let Him find us worthy then we join the host of women this verse refers to.
This still begs the question, ??If there are so many women of proven worth, how can I excel them all??? We excel the other women by being who God created us to be: ourselves. St. Paul spends much of 1 Corinthians 12 talking about how we are each given a different gift. No one else on earth gets to be me, nor do I get to be anyone else on earth. God has called me to be me, here, in this time and in this place for a specific person. I exceed other women of proven worth by being me, by striving to fall more deeply in love with Him. God gave me special gifts and He gave you a special gift, a unique call to build up His Kingdom and glorify His name. Are you answering that call or are you bogged down by the art of comparison? Do you have yourself convinced that other women are doing ??it?? (whatever ??it?? is) better than you? Rid yourself of those thoughts because God is calling you some place unique and meant just for you. Follow Him there.
In reality, Proverbs 31:29 is meant for each of us. God finds us all worthy and proves our worth time and time again. He renews our worth when we turn our hearts towards Him and then He sends us out to build up His Kingdom in a unique way. By following His path for our lives we exceed all other women because only we can live out God??s call for us as individuals. You are a woman of proven worth, beloved by God, and invited to serve Him like only you can.
A woman after the Eucharistic Heart of Jesus, Amanda is also a Colorado native and can hardly imagine living anywhere else. She graduated from Belmont Abbey College in North Carolina in 2009 with a Bachelor’s in Theology, as well as minors in Psychology and Philosophy. Amanda works as a youth minister, and has a heart for women’s ministry. Her personal blog can be found at worthy of Agape.