First, in honor of Elizabeth’s past Bachelor shout outs, I will admit that I watched most of the finale. The lesson I took away: you will never fully know someone when your entire courtship takes place on camera. Anyone can be sweet and charming on vacation in Costa Rica and South Africa. The one on one dates should include mundane activities such as grocery shopping, driving in traffic or finding parking in the city. Let those true colors shine through! Additionally, the girl who is “runner up” will be scarred for life. Anyway, I promise I’m not cynical about love. Just realistic?
Speaking of relationships, Scott and I just finished up a small group series on relationships where we read through “Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus.” The book generated great discussion and, supplemented with scripture, made for a worthwhile study. Throughout the past several weeks I have reflected on not only our marriage relationship but also my relationships with the other men in my life- my dad and my two brothers. I am incredibly grateful for my family and recently have seen in a new way how God used each of them to love and shape me. They all demonstrate characteristics of Christ, characteristics that I need to be conscious of and praise Him for.
This would be too much for one post, so I’ll split it up, ending with mi esposo. Lets start with God as Father.
In our small group study we looked at 1 Peter 3, addressing wives (and women in general):
Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, 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.
This does NOT say that you can’t style your hair or accessorize. I think God enjoys the expression of creativity in our personal style. What the passage does address is the source of a woman’s beauty: “Inner Beauty”
The reason I relate this passage to my father is because the confidence in my inner beauty started with him. I knew I was of great worth to him because he told me and showed me how much he loved me. He sang to me that I was his princess. Not everyone had that reaffirming father-figure, but we all have a loving Father now who rejoices over us with singing. (Zephaniah 3:17) I need to be reminded of how beautiful He thinks I am. As Elizabeth wrote yesterday, we are deeply loved and cherished by God.
My beauty comes from submitting to Christ my Lord. A gentle spirit is not equivalent to a doormat. It takes a truly strong woman to die to herself and let God work in her life. Outer beauty is fleeting, but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised. (Proverbs 31:30)
God, I know my identity is in you. I know that you love me passionately as a precious daughter. I pray that I could be confident of that love. And living in that assurance will surely be noticed by those around me. For it is your love that compels me to share about you. (2 Corinthians 5)
Heavenly Father, thank you for loving me unconditionally.
I can’t say enough about how I’ve been impacted by my mama, aunts and grandmothers… but this one is for the boys.