As I was reading about the Proverbs 31 wife, I began reflecting on the virtuous and capable woman. There’s so much to learn from this wise and hardworking wife. But today, I couldn’t get past the first verse of that section: “Who can find a virtuous and capable wife? She is more precious than rubies.” (v. 10, NLT). It left me wanting to know everything I could about that precious stone. Yes, I know they are beautiful and of great value but what else is there to learn about rubies?
I took my question to google and the first thing that popped up was that its quality is determined by three main components: color, clarity, and carat weight. Immediately, I got this picture of how that could be translated into our lives as women. How could we be women of high quality?
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This deals with the external, how we appear to others, those who know us and those who may not. Can a stranger look at me and see/feel Jesus? Are the vibes I’m putting down positive, peaceful, and encouraging? Or, do I have that “resting witch face” that says, “Back up and stay in your lane!” I must be honest, that used to be me 100%. It wasn’t that I was upset or had an attitude, it’s just that growing up in a big city, you tend to be more focused on where you’re going and how fast you can get there. At least for me, there was no time to stop and smell the roses.
So many times, I heard people say, “Oh wow. You’re so sweet and helpful. I thought you had an attitude when I first saw you.” Well, one day it finally hit me. If I am called to be a light on a hilltop, I should be attracting people to me, not away from me. They shouldn’t be surprised by my heart when speaking to me, they should expect it by the joy and happiness I am radiating. What are you radiating? Is it an overflow of the love of Christ, is it worry and anxiety, or just an unapproachable demeanor?
Am I living a life of integrity and transparency? Am I standing on the truth? Do my actions match my words or am I a different person around different people? Sometimes, as women who are seeking God and striving to be more Christ-like each day, it can seem that we are not who we claim to be. For example, something that I would’ve been okay with 5 years ago, may not sit well with me today. In that case, people who knew me then may not think I’m being honest or real. And I’m okay with that because it can be confusing to others who don’t understand.
But those who stick around or keep watching, will eventually realize that I am following my God-given convictions and will continue to change for the better.What’s more important to me is that everyone around me today gets the same picture of who I am now. Are you being transparent about your shortcomings or putting on different masks? Would you feel comfortable if three separate friends had a conversation about you? Would their description of you sound similar or very different?
This is not to be confused with size, dimensions or cut. This pertains to the physical weight of the ruby. Depending on the cut or how the ruby is mounted, it may look bigger or smaller. However, the weight would not change. It deals with the internal. What are you made of? What do you carry inside? It has to do with the real you. What do you bring to the table or have to offer? People may not be aware of your gifts, unless you share it with them. Are you a giver, an encourager, a teacher? Do you pour into others or are you so wrapped up in your own life that there’s no room for anything else?
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Altered by fire
The next part that grabbed my attention were two common alterations made to rubies.In order to be acceptable for commercial use, rubies have to be treated and altered in some way to enhance its beauty. The most common treatment is the application of heat. I’m sure this is something we can all relate to! How many times have you felt unbearable pressure or as though you were being put through the fire? What’s beautiful about this is that it eradicates impurities in the ruby. This is the same for us! If we are truly following Christ, we will be able to clearly see him working amid our trials.
Did he cause these trials? Maybe or maybe not. Perhaps they’re consequences of our actions or they are the result of people having free will. But either way, he allowed it and will use it for good. Every time we feel like we’re under the fire, we can have hope because if we fix our eyes on what is good and endure until the end, we will come out better than before. Take a minute to reflect on the trials you have endured and try to find at least one good thing that resulted from it. If you cannot, you may need some more time to see it play out or you may need to change your attitude about the situation.
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Filling the Fractures
The next form of treatment which is gaining more and more popularity is filling the fractures in the ruby with lead glass. I get chills just thinking about this.No matter what brokenness we may have, God can fill that void and make us better than ever. All we have to do is accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior and ask him to heal what is broken in us. He is so merciful and loving, he will never leave us or abandon us.
Have you accepted Jesus into your heart? If not, I would love to pray for you via phone or email at [email protected]