Our year of spending time with the Proverbs 31 woman is almost over, but before we wrap things up next month, I’d like to peek into her heart around the holidays.
There’s so much to say here.
Should I take the angle that she’s ready to flour up the kitchen and host a spontaneous family dance party, regardless of the mess? Maybe how she keeps her spirit calm and bright? Or sends love to those who need it most? How looking well to the ways of her household could mean both spectacular decorations and snuggling around the fire in a season of scaling back from commercialism?
The truth is that Ms. P looks as different as we do, and that’s the whole point. As convenient as it would be to stuff her into a one-size-fits-all shoebox, that’s not how the Spirit prompted her to be written for us. She’s more like those frozen fractals Elsa sings of: beauty created by her infinitely complex variances, each version unique and captivating.
Every woman who has fallen in love with her Savior is the Proverbs 31 woman. And we all show Him off together, a flurried snowstorm of His glory.
I would like to make one point in particular, though, if that’s okay.
Christ is obviously the best gift ever given. His mama carried Him around for nine long months until He was delivered to deliver us. In a way, we are all called to be Mary—carrying around hope until He decides to come out in His timing and change the world as we know it. He grows in us as we grow in His presence one day at a time, a long-term reality of mercies new every morning and kingdom expansion.
We are now the gift, bearing Jesus to the people around us. Yes, we can give thoughtful packages tied up with strings to our loved ones, but God decided those loved ones needed us in their lives for a purpose. You’ve been handmade and given to all who are in your circle of influence with the intent that you show off Love in a way that only you can.*
So the P31 girl comes in all shapes and sizes, tucked into dark corners or under bright lights, prettily packaged or marked by simplicity, always always always meant to be shared with others. The gift tag reads the same as it did way back on the first Christmas: To the world, From God.
Are you ready for the point?
We are presents who enjoy the presence of Christ and then present presents of our presence to everyone present.
(It’s okay if you need to read it again.)
Basically, we do because we are. We do love because we are loved. We do forgiveness because we are forgiven. We do grace because we are recipients of grace. We do this moment with these people because we are what God thought this moment with these people should look like.
What does it mean for you to live as the gift this holiday season?
*This doesn’t mean that you are absolutely perfect just the way you are. Let’s face it—we’re sinners saved by grace. When you get to one of those moments where showing off Love is the farthest thing from your mind, give the gift of emptying yourself. It might be emptying yourself of the need to look strong or of the perfect comeback or of your right to voice an opinion. Often, emptying ourselves is the best way to show off who Jesus is. We decrease, and He increases. When we empty ourselves, it’s a Mary moment; Christ is poured out into the world.