me vs. the proverbs 31 woman

medium_6148929793.jpg I'm sure this isn't something I'm supposed to admit. At least not out loud. I'm sure some would even consider it sacrilegious or something. But nonetheless, it's true.

I hate the Proverbs 31 woman.

:: looks around for lightning bolts ::

But seriously. What's not to hate?

She wakes up early. Every single day. She makes things from scratch—clothes, bedding, meals, everything. She gardens and farms and seems to rather enjoy getting dirt under her fingernails. She's a successful businesswoman, wife, mother, and leader. She despises idleness (which, I'd imagine, includes Netflix-viewing marathons). She's wise and tactful. Always. She's a domestic goddess. She laughs in the face of adversity. She's in great shape. Ugh.

And she's been held up as the bar of godly womanhood my entire life.

Maybe I would have actually tried to live up to the standard she'd set, if it weren't so laughable. Instead I've just quietly resented her, stuffing down my hostility and attempting to mask my eye rolls.

But I realize my disdain is misplaced. Because she doesn't really exist.

She's a figment of the Church's imagination—poetic symbolism transformed into a mirage of the woman that we should all strive to be. The beauty of the character traits she displays—loyalty, wisdom, diligence, servanthood, faithfulness, compassion—got lost as I measured myself against the yardstick held out for me.

I could never measure up.

Never have. Never will.

The yardstick became a weapon of shame, telling me again and again and again: You are not enough. It echoed the message I already had on repeat in my heart—one that was reiterated with each rejection, each abandonment, each failure.

My journey of the past few years has been one of moving toward understanding and accepting my enoughness, simply because God says I'm enough.

Whole. Complete. Nothing missing, nothing broken.

So it shouldn't matter what the measuring stick of this fictitious chick says about me.  It shouldn't even matter what the Church thinks of me.

He says I'm enough— even though I like to sleep in, would eat out every meal if I could, don't really enjoy the outdoors, love lazy Saturdays, and have jiggly arms.

He says I'm enough— even though I say stupid things, fail at loving others well, doubt, question, curse, don't pray or read the Bible very often, and make mistakes (big and small).

He sees me and knows me and still declares me enough. Actually, He declares me good. "God looked over all He had made, and He saw that it was very good!" (Genesis 1:31)

So it's time to let go of this grudge I've held against the Proverbs 31 woman.

I'm good just as I am...

photo credit: fiddleoak via photopin cc