The Garment of Womanhood
Greetings to all my dear sisters in the Lord. What a privilege to have sisters of the Spirit with whom we can share His precious dealings!
When Moses stood on holy ground, God said to him, “What is that in thine hand?” (Exodus 4:2) It was only a lowly, insignificant staff, but because Moses surrendered it, it became a symbol of God’s power, and a mighty weapon in the work Moses was called to do. What is in our hands? Our womanhood. God has called each of us, in our peculiar circumstances, to fill a beautiful, noble place that no one else can fill, and the gifts and attributes of our womanhood, if we will give them fully to God.
To “wrap the garment of womanhood about us” means to accept completely the submissive role God has given us as women. In order to be pleasing to God and effectively do His work in the world, we must be in submission, first to Him and then to our husbands. Submission means dying out to self and giving up self will and personal ambition. When we do that, the ugliness of self will be covered by the beautiful garment of womanhood. The Bible speaks of a woman’s outward beauty or profession of religion being marred by a lack of discretion of an unbridled tongue; those are the things sub mission, or the garment of womanhood, will cover, leaving only His graces to shine through us.
I’ll tell you a story about myself that illustrates this. One time my husband came home upset because his brother had called him at work making an unreasonable demand for money, and he had agreed to it. He said there was no way out of it; we would have to give his brother that money. I got upset as well, and began saying such things as, “You don’t have to do what he tells you to do,” and “We can’t afford to give him that much money,” and so on. Picture it for yourself. At once the Lord checked me, and I said, “I can’t talk about this; I need to go pray.”
Bob said, “About this situation?”
And I said, “No, for myself. My attitude is wrong.”
Even before I got on my knees the Lord was talking to me: “You owe your husband an apology. He deserves to be able to come home and tell you what’s bothering him, and get your best thinking and advice on the situation, without being reproached and made to feel worse.”
I was so sorry and repentant! I said, “Yes, Lord! Forgive me. I’ll apologize to him, and listen to him, and with Your help try to work out the best way for all of us. Thank you!”
I got up from my knees feeling happy, and as I started out of the bedroom the Lord spoke again and said, “And I’ll take care of the other problem.” What victory! What covering of my ugly self by the beautiful garment of submission! I apologized to Bob, told him I’d listen without criticism, and when I told him the Lord would take care of the problem, he wept. When my brother-in-law (who had been angry at me for weeks) came to the door, I met him with a smile and told him I loved him, and he wept! The whole situation dissolved to nothing, and the two brothers spent a congenial evening together.
Sisters, our most powerful weapon against sin and self is submission. When we submit to God and our husbands, Christ clothes us “with His perfect righteousness imputed, which as a garment doth hide the spiritual nakedness, and decks and adorns the soul with spiritual beauty” (Cruden’s Concordance). The work of women in this world is beautiful: we are the nurturers, the care-givers, the ones who bind the wounds and bear the children and make the home a place of refuge. Let’s pray for ourselves and for each other that as godly women we may not mar our “message that no one else can deliver just as we can,” and by so doing show the world the true beauty of a woman’s place.