IMG_6389The Amanita Muscaria is a mushroom that is beautiful to behold but can be very toxic. Not fatal but it can cause sickness. A lot of things in life we note as beautiful yet they can be dangerous and actually cause sickness. What about the things that we want that are beautiful but that are not for us.

I woke this morning and immediately read Proverbs 31. This is the passage on the virtuous woman. What is a virtuous [conforming to moral and ethical principles; morally excellent; upright] woman? What does she possess? What gives her virtue, an effective force, an influence or power? 

The Virtuous Wife

Who can find a virtuous wife?
For her worth is far above rubies.
The heart of her husband safely trusts her;
So he will have no lack of gain.
She does him good and not evil
All the days of her life.
She seeks wool and flax,
And willingly works with her hands.
She is like the merchant ships,
She brings her food from afar.
She also rises while it is yet night,
And provides food for her household,
And a portion for her maidservants.
She considers a field and buys it;
From her profits she plants a vineyard.
She girds herself with strength,
And strengthens her arms.
She perceives that her merchandise is good,
And her lamp does not go out by night.
She stretches out her hands to the distaff,
And her hand holds the spindle.
She extends her hand to the poor,
Yes, she reaches out her hands to the needy.
She is not afraid of snow for her household,
For all her household is clothed with scarlet.
She makes tapestry for herself;
Her clothing is fine linen and purple.
Her husband is known in the gates,
When he sits among the elders of the land.
She makes linen garments and sells them,
And supplies sashes for the merchants.
Strength and honor are her clothing;
She shall rejoice in time to come.
She opens her mouth with wisdom,
And on her tongue is the law of kindness.
She watches over the ways of her household,
And does not eat the bread of idleness.
Her children rise up and call her blessed;
Her husband also, and he praises her:
“Many daughters have done well,
But you excel them all.”
Charm is deceitful and beauty is passing,
But a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised.
Give her of the fruit of her hands,
And let her own works praise her in the gates.
~Proverbs 31:10-31

This sounds like the most amazing woman in the world. She has it all together. She is noted for all her good deeds. But I just love how the scripture closes because it explains the most exceptional detail about her that gives her virtue–she fears the Lord.  She has reverence for God, a respect for God, a recognition for God that is first and foremost.

Charm is deceitful and beauty is passing,
But a woman who fears the Lord,
She shall be praised.

It is not about the deeds that make you beautiful. It is not what you do on the outward appearance that make you beautiful.  It is not even things that you have or acquire that make you beautiful. For all the natural things will eventually fade away. But it is the inside that matters most of all. It is having an ever-lasting relationship with the Father that makes you beautiful. This changes your look. This makes you glow. This makes you radiate.

Everything else is just passing. Things last from moment to moment. Sometimes we even beg for the most beautiful things that we see. We look at something and we call it BEAUTIFUL.

A beautiful person
A beautiful figure
A beautiful home
A beautiful car
A beautiful bag
A beautiful dress
A beautiful pair of shoes…. etc.

Things attractive to the eyes. This is what we look for and what we gravitate to. But what about when those things fade away or when they are not as beautiful as you think. You notice someone and think they are the most beautiful person in the world based on that outward appearance.

“But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look at his appearance or at his physical stature, because I have refused him. For the Lord does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7

Meanwhile, they have bad intentions, they lie, they hurt people, they do the wrong things… that is not quite so beautiful! That is what you call toxic! Just like the mushroom. It looks so beautiful, colorful and attractive but it can get you sick inside. Why then even go near it? Why should you become enticed by something that will eventually make you sick? It is simply not worth it. Leave behind the 5 inch beauties in those heels because after 5 minutes of usage they will give you some serious blisters! Again, it is just not worth it. A cup cake is delicious but it is the kale that is nutritious.

In the book of Genesis, Eve was in the Garden of Eden with her mate. She had all that she needed. But then she came to a point to “want”. It was only until the serpent deceived her that she came to think that she needed the fruit too. The fruit became a want…and so the want became her need…until her eyes were opened and she tasted her way to the place of death. The serpent talked her so much into believing the lie–that she will not die if she ate the fruit. The truth was–she didn’t die immediately but she took the ultimate eternal plan that God had and brought death.

We have to be so careful in this life. You may have such a desire for a thing but just leave it. Ask God to help you and to stir in you healthy desires. All this can be controlled when you bring it to the place where it belongs. Under the subjection of God. He will give us what we need. Everywhere I turned I can see God shouting from the rooftops… “I know what you want…but I am giving you what you need.”

He will give you the most beautiful things. We just need to be reverent before Him.
We need to have that relationship with Him and ask when beauty will be toxic for us. The warning signs will emerge.

All things are lawful for me, but not all things are helpful; all things are lawful for me, but not all things edify. 1 Corinthians 10:23

God help us! Protect us from the things that cause us to be sick inside. And if something has made us sick – take it out! All of it! Remove anything that is not good for us. Bring us to the place of complete health and wholeness so that we can glorify Your name in all that we do.

~Amen

One thought on “When Beauty is Toxic

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