Proverbs 31 Womans Devotional - Encouragement for Today

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Encouragement for Today - Aug. 23, 2007

August 23, 2007

The Perfect Fit By Janet Perez Eckles, She Speaks Graduate

"O Lord, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise;
you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down;
you are familiar with all my ways." Psalm 139:1-3 (NIV)

Devotion: So why wouldn’t I jump at the chance to head to the mall when a great sale is calling my name? I imagine most folks would resist a shopping trip when blindness sets in, but not me.

A while back, my dear friend Laura called. "I’ll pick you up early." Excitement splashed through her words. "There’s a great sale going on and we don’t want to miss it."

Although we both love a bargain, Laura knows unique adventure is in store when shopping with a blind friend. Some incidents make our cheeks burn with embarrassment; others spark roars of laughter. Either way, nothing prevents us from joining the army of bargain shoppers.

Anticipating great deals sure to make my budget smile, I clutched my friend’s arm and we squeezed through isles to begin our hunt. The word "sale" added to the excitement and ignited our itch to conquer.

Laura tugged at my arm. "Look…the perfect outfit for you."

"What color is it?"

"Black and red, your colors." She placed it in my hands. "And it’s on sale!"

I felt the fabric, shape, and style. Then with a clear image in my head, I smiled and added the item to the "try on" pile.

Once in the dressing room, Laura reassured me, "It has to fit you. The price is unbelievable."

I slipped it on half way and something unexpected happened. It got stuck. "Hmm… a little tight," my muffled voice begged from inside this garment. With raised arms, I struggled to squeeze my torso through.

"Keep trying. It will look great on you." Laura pulled at the sides.

My attempts to remain calm threatened to vanish with my arms locked up in the air, unable to move one inch further. "Now what do I do?"

"It’s got to fit…it’s your size!" Laura insisted. "Let me help you." She tugged as I wiggled and strained.

"I really think I need a bigger size," I pleaded, feeling worn out by the struggle. I longed to be double-jointed.

"Remember…no pain, no gain," Laura announced. And with all her might, she gave one last yank. "There…it fits perfectly!"

I stared blankly, arms limp to my sides. They stung from the fabric that scraped my skin raw. I stood motionless from fatigue. Her comments of praise eluded me. My concentration drifted and I coveted Houdini’s ability to get back out of this garment.

"It looks great, Janet. Turn around."

I felt her hand on the back. "Oh, there’s a zipper. I didn’t see it before. You have to really look for it."

"A zipper? A zipper?" I thought. What a relief!

The same painful struggle invaded my world when I faced my blindness. Feeling lost and destroyed by its horrifying grip, I had crafted my own solutions and answers, thinking they’d be a good fit.

The struggle began. I tugged, yanked and pulled to find a fitting answer for my anguish. I grew out of breath as the battle continued and anxiety squeezed at my heart and frustration left it raw. Then, when ready to give up, I stepped into the closet of my soul only to find the second hand rags of despair and frustration. But when I opened the zipper of my heart, I invited Christ into my life, and right away breathed relief from my pain.

His shining faithfulness, compassion and guidance offered a perfect garment for my soul. This gift, garnished with the accessories of His trustworthy promises, completed the wardrobe of a new life; one rich with newfound freedom. This garment with the reassurance that He created me and thus knew what will fit me. He knew the size of my pain, the color of my frustration, the fabric of my fears, and the fashion of my insecurities.

Once I opened the zipper of my heart to Him, the size of my problems and His sovereign provision were a perfect fit. No more struggling to force my own solutions. Instead, when facing difficulties, I dash to the sale rack of His faithfulness, forgiveness and provision. And to my delight, the price tag always reads "already paid for."

Heavenly Father, thank you for the gift of your love that covers all my pain. Thank you for knowing the intensity of my struggles and for having the perfect response. May I seek Your ways rather than my own. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Related Resources: Do You Know Him?


God Calling by A.J. Russell


Listen to Today's P31 Radio Show

Application Steps: Read and consider God’s promise in Isaiah 41:10.

Reflections: Consider the times you tried to bring about your own solutions. How did that work for you?

Why does He instruct us to come to Him when we’re weary and overburdened? See Matthew 11:28.

In what ways do we stand in the way of God solving our problems?

Power Verses: Mark 10:27, "Jesus looked at them and said, "With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God."

Isaiah 5:8-9, "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the LORD. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts higher than your thoughts."

Proverbs 31 Ministries

616-G, Matthews-Mint Hill Road

Matthews, NC 28105


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