But even now, (yes for you who are single too) another Groom eagerly awaits His Father’s word to come and receive you–His Bride. Jesus Christ Himself is your Beloved Groom. Just as a man anticipates the day when he can finally receive you as his wife, Jesus is waiting for the day when He may finally take you into His Kingdom. The day you committed your life to the Lord, you entered into an engagement. You do belong to Christ. Did you know that although He has given His desire on certain things for your outward appearance–He has also allowed us to know what the character, heart and mind of His Love –His beloved Bride–should be.
So what does this Bride actually look like? Let’s take care of the “outside” first in one simple point:
1) She is Modest
Don’t skip this one, even if you have heard this “a million times”! It is the truth. “Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body,” and in what you wear (1 Corinthians 6:19-20 ). I am going to shoot straight with you –modesty is important. It is not merely a length of skirt or a certain way to do your hair, but a heart attitude. It is an overflow of what is going on inside your heart. To be “modest” merely means that you do not draw unnecessary attention to yourself. In other words, shirts, skirts, tank tops, shorts, skinny jeans, bohemian pants, leggings, jeggings, (the list scrolls) are to not distract people by mere physical appearances. When we are not walking close with the Lord, the more prone we are to wanting people to see us (and approve of us) not HIM. However, the closer we walk with the Lord, the more we do not want anything we do or wear to distract people from Him! I don’t know about you, but I want people to be redirected to God by what I do, not distracted by what I wear and applaud my physical form.
What It Looks Like: First off, ask the Lord to grant you the humility to dress in a way that honors Him. Imagine Jesus looking at you and saying “Oh! Look at my daughter! Isn’t she lovely? Not only does she value my thoughts on her outward apparel, but even more her heart is for me!” Pretty sweet, huh? 🙂 Secondly, take a moment to think about what your wardrobe looks like. Is there anything right off the top of your head that would be distracting to the person behind you in church (really short “skater” dresses, shirts that show a little bit of your stomach)? When you bend over, do your pants ride low or shirt neckline show unnecessary skin? Camisoles easily fix neckline issues, plus a splash of color looks great underneath that cute shirt. There are also some really neat Skirt Extenders (a slip with shabby chic lace) that are AWESOME and actually make wearing those cute little dresses possible, but also are not distracting. Remember, if you are dressing with a certain person in mind, make sure the person you have in mind is the person you have committed to–to Jesus.[If you need more advice or even some suggestions about how to piece together a great, but also God-honoring wardrobe, join the forums on our new website to ask the Unshakable Girl staff and other girls just like you!]
2 ) She is Willfully Pure
What on earth does THAT mean? The word “pure” you’ve heard–possibly quite frequently– but…willfully? It is simple. Despite what has happened to you in your past, physically or emotionally, you want to be different. You want to be pure. Purity is not overrated, nor is it unattractive! What would you think if you saw a girl walking beside her fiance, but double taking at every shirtless ad, every attractive guy, snickering over innapropriate inuendos, sighing wistfully over steamy fiction novels? You would think that maybe her heart was not actually won or that she actually did not give her whole heart to her groom. “Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish” (Eph. 5:25-27). Purity is not only a physical form, but also a willing decision to not have a mind consumed with lust (girls, this is an issue for us, too), dirty jokes or even really intimate scenes in books.
What It Looks Like: Jesus knows our past. He knows what we have done, or what has happened to us. Did you know that despite the fact that you may not be “physically” pure in the world’s eyes, the Lord can make you pure again? When we ask Him, He begins to craft into us a thirst for the innocent things–the simple, sweet things. But we have to be ready to let go of the things we secretly (or not so secretly) like. We can only let go by the strength of the Holy Spirit, and by spending time with the One who is completely without spot or blemish–Jesus Christ. It is crucial. We have to make time for the Lord, girls. It’s not a pretty option or a good “staged picture” for Instagram. If we want to see God, we have to be pure in heart (Matthew 5).
3) She is Lacking in Arrogance
Also known as humble. I have been to a lot of weddings. By “been to” I mean in, throwing showers for, baking cakes for, cleaning up after, directing, pointing, assisting, decorating, bride prepping–you name it. In doing so, I have seen a variety of attitudes as brides get dressed in their waiting room. I have seen “I’m attractive, so of course he wants to marry me” brides, as well as the sweetest brides which glow from exquisite joy because they cannot believe the man God is allowing them to marry. They truly are still astonished at the great blessing that God has bestowed upon them–a man that loves the Lord with his entire heart. May I just state that it is the brides which do not think much (“I’m attractive, obviously” attitude) of themselves which cause me to be continually praising the name of the Lord?
The Bride of Christ is engaged to the most humble man to ever walk the earth. Remember, “although (Jesus) existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped” and allowed Himself to live a life of great servanthood, laboring, but also demonstrating what LOVE is. If Jesus set the example of humility, would it not also be logical to assume that it is a desired trait within His beloved Bride? “Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive” (Col 3:12).
What it Looks Like: By spending time with the One who is actually worthy of honor and “bragging on”, we begin to understand the truth of who we are. We are created beings–we are under the mercy, grace, protection and hand of an incredible God. When we spend time with the Lord, our lenses get cleaned on our outlook of life. We do not deserve the precious gift of a relationship with the Lord, nor the mindblowing blessing of promised hope and life after we finish our time on earth. Humility comes when we spend time with Jesus.
4) She is a Servant
There are a lot of beliefs and attitudes floating around in this generation. One, I am noting, is the “no woman should ever be a ‘servant’ to anyone–especially a man” attitude. “I don’t owe anything to anyone,” is right there behind it. I have been considering these points of views. May I gently venture to say that these are not godly attitudes, my dear friends? I am also aware that the root of these opinions can grow from having been truly hurt by the men in one’s life. For that, may I actually apologize for the hurt you have received? I pray that you will allow the balm of Gilead to soothe and comfort the scars you have, as well as fully restore the Joy of serving HIM. Let me continue by first telling you what servant-hood (in the context of what I am referring to) is NOT. It is NOT a ball and chain, being at the beck and call of everyone. Servant-hood, in the context of a Christian’s life, is a JOY.
Again, going into a relationship (even a friendship) with the attitude of deserving is wrong. Hear me out. Jesus HIMSELF “did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Matthew 20:28). Jesus served men AND women–day and night. He healed a woman who had been bleeding for 12 years (Luke 8), women who were sick (Matthew 8, Luke 8), and the list scrolls. He is the only person who could actually say “Why isn’t everyone doing things for me?” Serving is NOT what the world would call slavery. It is merely letting go of pride and actually wanting to do things for others in order to show the love of Christ.
What It Looks Like: It is as simple as scrubbing down bathtubs for an overwhelmed mom, making time to pray on the spot for a person in need, or even just putting off things you want to do in order to be a blessing to someone else. If we try to do things to make people happy or just because we are free, eventually we will run out of joy and eagerness to serve. To have a heart that matches your Groom–a true servant’s heart–it has to be done for the Lord. “Lord, I may not always enjoy this task, but today I am doing this to honor You, and so that others might know Your love.” Then, dear sisters, that is when serving becomes a JOY.
4) She is His True Friend
One of the sweetest privileges about being in a relationship is that you are able to form a friendship–not just a romantic relationship. Someone to talk with, laugh with, and just enjoy being together. Did you actually know that you can sit in the Lord’s presence without speaking and just enjoy being with Him? Jesus wants to be our friend. Did you know He loves to laugh? Did you know that He can tell you, Himself, all about the things He has made? Did you know that He knows the depths of your soul? He made you. But, like any good relationship, it takes effort and care. When He comes back to receive you, don’t you want to know Him so well that you are both laughing with elation at just finally seeing each other?!
What It Looks Like: What does a relationship look like here on earth? Spend TIME with Jesus. I cannot emphasize or italicize that enough. Learn to hear His voice. Learn about the things He has made. Stand up for Him when others put Him down. Talk to others about Him–Your Groom. Read His Book, inspired by the Holy Spirit, which is still living and active. It is your weapon against the enemy who would love nothing better than to separate you from the One who loves you so much, friend. Cherish, protect, and honor Jesus. Put the Lord’s desires above your own. “It may not be easy, but it is simple”.
That is what Jesus is looking for in His Bride. She may not be perfect, but she is spotless because of what the Lord has done for her and what she let Him do for her. She is humble, radiant with joy, eager to serve others, intentionally ignorant about dirty jokes, and she clothes herself with dignity and grace–all because she loves the One who has chosen her above all others.
Today, whether you are making plans to prepare for marriage or you are still waiting on the Lord, remember that there is a Groom who is eagerly waiting to receive you. Spend time with Him, get to know Him. Delight in Him. He is the One who calms your anxious heart, who hears every thought and desire, who fights your battles for you, and who wants to use you for His glorious name.
“In many-colored robes she is led to the king, with her virgin companions following behind her. With joy and gladness they are led along as they enter the palace of the king. “ [Psalm 45:14-15]
Written by: Anna Faith