Based on the response yesterday, we all love to hate the Proverbs 31 woman.
One person on Twitter said, “How many of us like to be compared to an ideal,” which is so true. No one likes to come up short. Comparison isn’t so bad when we know we’re doing well. However, when we feel like the loser in the race, we don’t want it highlighted for all.
Is this just a case of the Proverbs 31 woman being the popular girl that we all want to emulate, but hate because she seems perfect? Are those feelings of guilt, failure and shame what God intended for us in including chapters like this in Scripture? That is what I want to explore today.
Let’s take a look at guilt…
Picture a lush tropical paradise. Birds flit overhead, a warm breeze whips the hair around your face, and sweet smells of pineapples and mangos waft through the air. A newlywed couple walk arm in arm under palm spread archways — you know where I’m going with this.
Guilt accompanies sin.
The God of grace, love, unity and compassion is now separated from His creation. Yet still, He seeks out those who are lost to Him. He rejoices over the prodigal. He removes our sins from us and frees us from our chains of bondage. He sent His only Son to die on the cross for our guilt, setting us free to spend eternity with Him.
God is not the source of guilt, He is not the cause of guilt. Guilt is a consequence of the Fall.
I loved the comments that were written in response to yesterday’s post! It was so good to hear your thoughts on this topic, and many of them ministered to me. I wanted to highlight them again here, so they could minister to you as well.
Guilt is a useless emotion. It is a form of self deception that makes me look at myself and not at what God is saying to me or what people around me are going through. When I become so focused on myself and how I think I am doing, I loose sight of things that really matter…. I do things for the wrong reasons. – Jess
We are much harder on ourselves than our children, husbands, and friends ever are. – Gretchen
In talking specifically about the Proverbs 31 passage, Haley said that she realized in studying it that she “did need to improve, but I didn’t need to feel the guilt.”
Brittany added that, “We have to make the choice to use it (Proverbs 31) as encouragement and not a guilt provoker.”
And Jason provided a manly perspective by sharing that, “any scripture has the ability to make us feel guilty if we aren’t relying on grace.”
Paul says the purpose of the Law (Scripture) is to alert us to the presence of sin:
I would not have come to know sin except through the Law. Romans 7:7
The sin that we inherited through the actions of the first man and woman turned the holy commandments of God from producers of life to producers of death.
The words of King Lemuel highlight the good works and kind deeds of a virtuous woman. We see condemnation and judgment because we do not feel we measure up. Paul instructs Timothy on the life that an elder or deacon should aspire to. Those same words are tools in the hand of the enemy to tear down a present day ministry leader.
Guilt causes us to avoid scriptures, people, and situations God intended for life in us. The thing we’re avoiding isn’t what’s condemning us, it’s our own sin rising up against the truth of God.
Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. Romans 8:1-2
Therefore there is now no condemnation.
Is there an area of your life where God has spoken life, and yet you still feel death?
Join me tomorrow as I look at how we can shake off those feelings of guilt.