CEV: She does her own sewing and everything she wears is beautiful.
MSG: She makes her own clothing and dresses in colorful linens and silks.
AMP: She makes for herself coverlets, cushions, and rugs of tapestry. Her clothing is of linen, pure and fine, and of purple (such as that of which the clothing the priests and the hallowed cloths of the temple were made).
I have to admit, I will never fit this verse, as far as sewing goes! Sewing is not something I enjoy, although I do like to crochet afghans. To help those of you who may be plagued with guilt over not sewing your own clothing, keep in mind that during the time this woman lived, sewing was something done by most women. Times and cultures have changed drastically since then. Not to mention, it can get very costly to sew. I’ve heard many women say that you are better off financially if you watch the clearance racks, shop at resale shops, or garage sales.
In looking at the CEV verse, it mentions that everything she wears is beautiful. The world’s standard of ‘beautiful’ is anything that looks voluptuous, showing off our bosom, our legs, or fitting tightly across our backside. We will see clearly in the scriptures today that our virtuous woman could not have possibly dressed in this manner.
In Is. 61:10, it mentions how the Lord has clothed us with garments of salvation, covering us with a robe of righteousness, as a bride adorns herself with jewels. What jewels? Could this be talking, in a spiritual sense, of clothing ourselves with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control? (Gal. 5:22) In looking at the other verses which describe the Proverbs 31 lady, we see that she fit these characteristics.
In I Pet. 3:3-4, Peter tells us that our beauty shouldn’t come from outward adornment, like wearing expensive jewelry or costly clothing. Rather, our beauty should be that which comes from a gentle and quiet spirit. This kind of beauty is such that it isn’t easily disturbed by circumstances, giving in to whining, moaning, yelling, or fits of rage. It is also of such that it doesn’t allow that inner tranquility to be easily disturbed by the comments of others, feeling that we must lash out in defense of ourselves when someone else judges us unjustly.
I can picture this lady ‘stitching’ spiritual garments into place, teaching herself to walk daily in the beauty which God desires for His daughters. I can picture her teaching these truths to her children with her words and actions, since this is a very important truth for them to learn. We can learn much from her example. Are we taking the time to teach our children to dress modestly, being more concerned about our inner beauty, rather than being sucked into Hollywood’s version of beauty? Are we teaching our sons that girls who dress immodestly are girls which they should avoid like the plague? Our former pastor used to tell us to ‘pick our battles.’ THIS battle is one worth fighting!
The Amplified version mentions the color purple, which represents royalty, or the best. Are we dressing our family in the best, or only in what will get us by? I’m not referring to spending lots of money on clothing. For our family, the ‘best’ is often the best value for our dollar. My daughter always looks like I’ve spent a fortune on her clothing, but I haven’t. For instance, one year, she had a fall outfit that cost $75 originally, but my mother bought it for $5.00. It obviously looked like it cost quite a bit, but it didn’t cost me a penny!
Are you clothing your family in the best? Are you clothing them spiritually with garments of righteousness through Biblical teachings?
© 2004, Stacy R. Miller