January 30, 2023
The First Step to Smiling Without Fear
A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies (Proverbs 31:10 NIV).
Friend to Friend
It’s as though the worn-out piece of wood can tell the future. Years of use have literally left their mark on the old stick, and each time it appears, anticipation swirls in the hearts of my little people.
During the days of my husband’s youth, as he and his siblings grew in age and size, Luke’s mom took a wooden board and made it a measuring stick. Year after year, Luke and his brothers and sister would scoot their heels all the way to the wall, stretch their necks, and wait anxiously to see the new line that marked how much they had grown.
Now, decades later, my children like to measure themselves on this same old piece of wood. Mostly because my husband and his brothers now stand over six feet tall ... and possibly because two of them played more than ten years of professional football.
So when my boys scoot their heels all the way to the wall and stretch their necks, they wait anxiously to find out if their line today matches the line of their daddy or uncles all those years ago. Because if it does, then their dreams of being tall or perhaps even of being a professional athlete seem more likely to come true.
We all have a tool by which we measure ourselves — that one person or thing that makes us believe what we’ve done, how we look, or how we live is a success or a failure. But Today’s Truth shows us another place to find our value.
I don’t willingly bring up grade school math class, but for a minute, let’s go back there. Do you remember the > and < signs? They are used for comparing numbers and expressions. They show when something is more than or less than something else. For example, 10 is more than 2, so we write 10 > 2. Whew! Glad that’s over.
Today’s Truth also makes a comparison, “A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies” (Proverbs 31:10). Did you catch the comparison? Based on our math lesson, it’s saying, her worth > rubies. It actually says her worth is far more than rubies, but I don’t think we have a sign for that.
In Scripture, the particular precious stone translated “rubies” in Proverbs 31:10 is compared with wisdom (Job 28:18; Proverbs 3:15; 8:11), and it was possibly one of the precious stones in the high priest’s breastplate (Exodus 28:17).
God Himself has defined our value.
Our value is not based on ever-changing earthly measurements and comparisons. Our value does not have to be defined by our place on the corporate ladder, the number of likes on our social media posts, or the cleanliness of our kitchen counters.
Instead, our value is rooted in the unshakable, unchanging name of God. By faith in Jesus, God extends to us the right to freely receive His grace and become co heirs to His kingdom (Titus 3:7). Jesus even talked about the connection between value and security (Matthew 6:25-34).
When we look around at anyone or anything else to determine whether we measure up, we will live exhausted, confused, and afraid—constantly adjusting our efforts to match what we see around us and hoping we don’t take a wrong turn that proves disastrous.
As Jesus pointed out to His followers, our value to God is the catalyst to stop worrying and start seeking Him (Matthew 6:33).
When we truly believe that Jesus has defeated death and sin once and for all, we can trade the chains of performance-based acceptance for the free gift of God’s grace and take the first step to smiling without fear of the future.
What is one thing you can do today to turn your attention away from the measuring sticks of the world and focus on God’s grace to you and His love for you?
Dear God, I’m tired of trying to measure up and keep up with the ever-changing opinions of the world. Help me understand Your grace in a new way today. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Now It’s Your Turn
In what ways do you compare yourself with others? Spend a few minutes considering the measuring sticks you’ve set up in your life. How does your value to God change your perspective on the things you’ve been measuring yourself against?
Make a list of Scriptures that remind you of your worth to God. Keep them in an accessible place and read them often.
More from the Girlfriends
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© 2022 by Katy McCown. All rights reserved.
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Did you know that Girlfriends in God relies solely on the ongoing generosity of friends like you? As a global nonprofit ministry, financial support from sisters all over the world fuels our efforts to produce biblical devotions with the goal of equipping women to apply the gospel to all of life. Would you consider making a small gift, or becoming a monthly partner, to help sustain the GiG’s ministry? To make a donation please go to https://girlfriendsingod.com/donate/
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Originally published Monday, 30 January 2023.