Read verse 22 of Proverbs 31.
"She makes coverings for her bed; she is clothed in fine linen and purple."I talked to my Pastor's wife about this and she gave some pretty good insight about what this verse meant. She thinks that this verse means that the P31W appreciates and strives for beauty in the home. She is a homemaker and does what she can to have a gorgeous home.
I have two applications for this verse myself. Let's take the first part of it. "She makes coverings for her bed." Where do you feel at home? If you were to go to someone's house and it was dirty and not very well taken care of, would you feel as comfortable there as you would in someone's clean house who tried to make it look beautiful and inviting? I would venture to guess that you probably would not.
God created the world beautiful. He created beautiful girls and even calls them as much in the Bible. The temple was beautiful, even. Some people believe it is vain to have curtains or a beautiful home. People have gone as extreme to make sure they only have the bear necessities in their home so as not to be vain. Now, don't get me wrong. Some people have extreme convictions about this. Take Muller for example. Thousands of orphans were in his care and he had nothing. That's understandable. But, I think there is a point where you can start to be legalistic about it. Is it JUST about not being vain, or is there a part of the person that makes them feel more loved by God if they refrain from "fluff"? ...That's not an accusation, just a question.
I, on the other hand, feel like it is our job to make beauty. God speaks to us of beauty through the Bible is creation, His Son, love relationships, in women, and even (I thought this was cool) in Exodus, God tells them to make garments for the priests for glory and beauty. See, beauty is not an un-known thing to God. He understands and loves beauty. Our job as P31Ws is to take our homes and lives and decorate them. When an unbeliever comes into my home, I want her/him to think, "Wow. This woman takes care of what she has. This place is peaceful and beautiful and makes me feel relaxed." I don't want that person to think. "This is the Christian life? Whoo, she got jipped." I want people to see the blessing of the Lord in my life, and if that is through a beautiful house, then praise the Lord!
I KNOW that there are some Christians who just don't have much. Glory to God. I hope they make beautiful and pleasing whatever God has given them.
Second application is beauty in the person of the P31W. I guess, sometimes I thought of her as someone who was probably grimy from working and never dressed in anything but a plain, straight dress. I don't think that is the case though. The second half of the verse says, "she is clothed in fine linen and purple." I don't think she was hygienically run down.
Yeah, you bet. Spending long periods of time in front of a mirror is a bad habit. Sinful and wrong. But, I think God is pleased when we try to be beautiful. Not in a seductive or self-glorifying way, but in a way that points people to the creator. We are the work, the beautiful work of the creator. We should show it. Not to flaunt. Not to draw attention. But in order to point people to the amazing creator. Wearing make-up, dressing up or doing our hair isn't going to make us less cherished in the sight of God. Did you know that God planted the desire to be beautiful in women? It's natural for us to want beauty. In 1 Peter 3:3-4 it says,
"Do not let your adornment be merely outward—arranging the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel— 4 rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God."God doesn't deny that we are beautiful creatures who have a desire to be attractive. It cannot be our primary focus and control us, but we shouldn't let it slide either. Lets be beautiful and attractive! Through our outward appearance, deeds, words, our home, and our character. God created us, right? And He doesn't mess up! So lets rejoice in the creator and be the piece of art-work He created us to be!!