I’ve always admired the Proverbs 31 woman. She has long been the ideal for every Christian woman because of her virtue, diligence and God-fearing qualities. There are so many things about this woman that stand out but really my favorite thing about her is found in vs. 25b “she laughs at the days to come.”
Do you know how difficult it is to laugh at the days to come? When your heart has been broken, when your kids are disobedient or when you lose your job, crying seems to be the appropriate response. Proverbs doesn’t say that the Proverbs 31 woman lived an easy life nor does it say that she was apathetic to the people or needs around her. I think that the Proverbs 31 woman has a little secret.
In verse 25a, it says that, “she is clothed in strength and dignity.” Now I love clothes and one of my favorite stores is Zara, a trendy European store that has penetrated the NY market in recent years. They sell just about everything, from dresses to shoes, t-shirts and even baby clothes, but strength and dignity? Not available in stores.
Where did she get her strength and dignity? Where do you find “strength” and “dignity” for sale? In the Greek…..ehhhh…the Dictionary defines strength as the “power to resist attack, strain or stress; durability.” Durability or rather the word durable is defined as “capable of withstanding wear and tear or decay; lasting, stable.” So this woman is not only clothed in something that is attack, strain and stress resistant but wear and tear proof! That’s some good fabric! Well what about dignity? Dignity is defined as “nobility or elevation of character; worthiness.” The definition goes on to state that dignity is the quality or state of being worthy of esteem and respect, inherent worth.” She knows she’s worthy. Her worth is ingrained in every fiber of her being. That’s her secret to laughing at the days to come, she knows that she’s worthy of esteem and respect and will accept nothing less than the best, even when facing the worst circumstances.
In the book of James it says, “Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.” (James 1:2-4 NASB)
So yes, this woman has had trials but she’s still laughing at the days to come because her faith has produced endurance or durability, that’s where she gets her strength. And she is complete, therefore not insecure, not worried or fearful, that’s where she gets her dignity.
I want to make this the 11th Commandment: “Thou shalt laugh at the days to come! There’s a really simple formula to doing so even when your past or present circumstances dictate tears instead of laughter.
Step one: Put your faith in Christ as He alone has the power to make you attack and stress resistant as well as complete, worthy of esteem and respect. That’s really all there is to it. No other steps just put your faith in Christ and not in your circumstances.
Are you ready to laugh at the days to come?
Check out the many positive health benefits of laughter.
Photo credit: Tara Nicole Dorsey (2011)