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My Proverbs 31 Reflection… Dare to be different…

I sat on my ten year old’s bed and felt the heaviness in his heart.  Moms feel every bit of that, you know.  It had hit sooner than I had hoped, and hurt deeper than I could have ever imagined.

Sometimes you just don’t fit in.

He may have known it before then, but the hot tears streaming down his face confirmed that the blow was a good one this time.  His ears stuck out too much, he wasn’t athletic in the least, and that was just the beginning.  Forget his inquisitive mind and compassionate heart.  Those things don’t feel cool when you’re ten.

I waited until just the right time, then I told him the story of when I was his age.  I shared just the highlights: being invited to the birthday party of the year (all of the most popular girls would be there…), me scrounging up all of my spare change to buy the birthday girl the most hideous (but oh so cool at the time!) Pepto-Bismol-pink purse, packing my bag for the overnight bash, only to be uninvited at the exact moment the other eight giggling girls piled into the bus after school to catch a ride to the party.  Oh, I remember it like it was yesterday, and I empathized with my struggling boy.  My advice to him that night?

The world will always tug at us to fit in.  But God has called us to something greater.

I love to read the scriptures out loud.  There’s just something about hearing the Word audibly spoken that helps it sink into my heart.  So for this Proverbs 31 study, I always looked forward to when Courtney or Angela would quote our verses on their Monday videos.  And these words got me every time:

A wife of noble character who can find?” ~ Proverbs 31:10

Only eight short words, but life changing for me.  God really challenged my heart throughout this study in one key area:

Dare to be different than the world.

The world tells us to compromise.  The Word tells us to keep doing right.

The world tells us that we deserve better.  The Word calls us to be faithful.

The world tries to talk us into cutting corners.  The Word speaks of diligence and discipline in our work.

The world tells us to be takers.  The Word talks about satisfaction in giving to others.

The world encourages worry.  The Word speaks of confidence in Christ.

The world elevates physical beauty.  The Word elevates a heart that fears God.

You see, leading a Proverbs 31 life allows for much influence for God.  Getting up early, working hard, being creative and profitable, serving others, etc. should not JUST be in an effort to make life run more smoothly (though it is often a wonderful by-product!).  Instead, when I am committed and efficient in dealing with my family and in other areas of my life, it makes room for even MORE serving, more loving, more generosity, more time to show God’s love to all around me.

The world says “Look to your own interests.”  The Word says, “Point people to Jesus by how you live.”

Sometimes it’s a good thing to not fit in.  Will you dare to be different with me?

At His feet,

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  1. What a tender moment with your son – it’s so hard to see them hurting. :(

    I am taking the dare Whitney! I will dare to be different to the glory of God :)!
    Thanks for the challenge!

  2. I,too,have a son that doesn’t fit it. His heart is as big as Texas and you are right that isn’t always “cool” with the world.But I know that it is “cool” with God and that is all that matters. I know that God has a plan for my son…and your son.We just have to point them in that direction. I will be praying for your son.

  3. Beautiful and inspiring words! Thank you for this wonderful challenge to live differently than what the world says is right.


  4. Wonderful post Whitney…all I can say is a great big AMEN!! This particularly strikes home for me because of the recent season I’ve been in…the world DOES try to get us to conform, break down our faith, mock our beliefs.

    The good Lord knows our poor children feel it even more than we do. Thank God that we are always covered by His Grace and His promise to never abandon us. Praying for strength for all of us mothers who have to train our children to ‘dare to be different’ and comfort them when they are hurt by it.

  5. Whitney,
    I just want to say thank you. Your reflection this morning really moved me and gives me much to think about and be challenged by. One thing is clear: the Word is the way I want to go!
    Blessings to you and yours,

  6. Whitney- I feel like I identify with you so much! I have always felt different, but I see that being different for God is what I want! What a sweet way you have with your son. I will remember that when my children come to me in that situation.

  7. I had a VERY similar moment with my 9 year old daughter last night! She’s very tall for her age and is already developing quickly. She’s isn’t very athletic. She doesn’t fit in with other girls her age either. She is very sensitive to others and has such a heart for God. She’s already decided she wants to work with orphans in China when she grows up. Anyway last night I prayed with her and we talked a while about my experiences growing up too. (I’m wheelchair bound and have been my whole life.) I told her that perhaps Jesus wants to be more real to her during this time and to keep trusting Him for the right friend at the right time. (I did not come to Jesus until my late teens. I had no idea what to tell her.) This morning as I prayed for her again and then I read your post. Thank God for it! Now I have more to share. Thank you so much.

  8. OMG! This was so powerful and inspiring!! I am up for the dare!! Thank you for sharing this beautiful story Whitney! :)

  9. Oh wow. Thank you for a window into good mothering at that moment. And thanks for the challenge. I, too, will take that challenge. And to the best of my ability, with God as my strength and song, I will be different. I will choose NOT to think like the world. Thank you.

  10. It is so hard to see our beloved children go through the hurts in life. He is so blessed to have you to listen and understand. We can hope that this situation will make him stronger and be a life lesson as he gets older. But for now, it’s hard to take away the hurt and the desire to fit in.
    BTW…I love pepto pink! She missed out on a great purse and friend.
    And it was great to run in to you on Sunday ; )

  11. Yes, I will dare to be different with you! (Your story made my heart hurt; how could they be so mean?)

  12. Thank you so much for sharing!!! I take the challenge and I will strive to be different with you!

  13. I love this! I have never heard it taught quite like this, but such a beautiful teaching, accurate, and true! Thank you for sharing!! Blessings to you!

  14. This is so powerful and true! I needed this today, thank you!

  15. I have experienced the feeling of not fitting in all of my life up until I knew I was saved. Praise God for He is the perfect fit and I am thankful to be different. Thank you for sharing.

  16. There is much in the Bible about having courage. And these verses might apply too. John 15:18 “If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. 19 If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.”

    It has taken me decades to embrace my not-of-this-world uniqueness!

  17. Wonderful reminder! Reading this brought tears to my eyes. Such a hopeful message amidst RL cares.

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