Apr 4, 2011

Purity: A Lesson from the Water Lily (Guest author Jordyn Wilson!)

 “If you would earnestly seek God and make your supplication to the Almighty, if you were pure and upright, surely now He would awake for you, and prosper your rightful dwelling place.”  Job 8:5-7
 
A few years ago my sisters and I decided to write a book on purity and what it means to be pure in our culture today. When we first started writing it, the Lord gave us this verse from Job which answered our question, what does the Lord promise to those who are pure? This verse gives me all the answer I need. The Lord says He will awaken for you! He will awaken your desires, your dreams, your longings and He will bless and “prosper your rightful dwelling place.” In other words I like to interpret this as the Lord allowing you to prosper in everything you do in the place He has you in, the place He’s given you a right to!
 
So what does purity look like in our culture today? First, purity not only means keeping our bodies pure before marriage but it also means living in integrity before God. Purity means full strength! When you choose to live in purity and walk with the Lord, your strength is untouchable! The Lord has so much reward for you because you have chosen purity. Psalm 84:11 is one of my all time favorite verses. It says, “No good thing does He withhold from those who walk uprightly.” He will not hold back His goodness from those who walk in purity before Him. What a promise!
 
My sisters and I studied the beautiful water lily because we were curious why such a beautiful flower would thrive in such a murky, gross place. Ever wondered that? Here’s what we found out.
 
The water lily is a symbol of purity. This subtle plant lives in ponds and still water, and although it looks delicate, it’s very sturdy and well anchored to the nourishing soil beneath the surface. As the water lily grows up from the muddy bottom in the pond, its slender stalks reduces wave action, making the surrounding water calm. The sweet-smelling flower that blooms from the plant rises out of the water, ever reaching toward the sun.
 
But the most interesting thing about the water lily is that it’s used to purify the water from poisonous heavy metals. It can also serve as a mini-waste-treatment plant for wastewater from household or industrial sources. God’s miraculous design for this flower is a striking picture of our call to purity as women.
 
How amazingly profound is the design of this flower! It’s a symbol of the purity to which God has called us—a reflection of His power and beauty. As the water lily reaches toward the light, so we lift our hands to glorify our Lord and reflect His light in the darkness. Just as the lily looks delicate and yet is well anchored in the soil, so we as women are called to express our strength in a delicate way as we anchor ourselves in the Lord. Just as the water lily is a calming presence in its environment, so we are called to bring the calming presence of our Lord to the culture. Just as the water lily grows up from the muddy, murky bottom if the pond to bring beauty to our natural world, so God raises us out of the muddy, murky soil of our culture to bring a supernatural beauty and grace to the world. And, most importantly, just as the water lily helps to purify the water from deadly toxins, so God brings healing to our culture through us and purifies ut from the poisons that threaten to destroy it. As we fix our eyes on Jesus, He flows through us from the root system of His word to bring healing, beauty, and wholeness to our world.
 
There are so many ways we can live in purity today.
1. Pure Gaze
We must choose what we gaze upon. Psalm 119: 37 is a beautiful prayer we should pray on a daily basis as we strive for a pure gaze. “Turn my eyes away from worthless things; preserve my life according to your word.” Ask the Lord to keep your eyes from dwelling on those worthless things like some books, movies, or magazines.  We must guard our eyes and keep our gaze fixed on Him as Mary did in Luke 10:38-42.

2. Pure Choices
Choice demands discipline. We can’t just flippantly make a choice to serve others, to spend time with the Lord in the mornings, to obey our parents and follow their lead. No, choice takes a lot of effort! That is why it is so important to spend time with the Lord and ask Him for the strength to choose well every day. Ask Him to help you live purely in the area of your choices. Choices can either bring order or chaos. Look at what Eve’s choice to eat the apple brought (Gen. 3:6-19). Her choice brought the curse. But then we see the incredible power of redemption the Christ brought when He chose to obey the Father’s will (Philippians 2:5-11). His choice brought miraculous redemption! What kinds of choices do you want to make?

3. Pure Thoughts.
Oh how crucial it is to guard our thoughts today! How do we do this? Well I think Philippians 4:8 gives a beautiful answer to this question. “Finally brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.” Once we get in that habit of meditating on “these things,” then we’ll find contentment, peace, and much joy!

So, dear maiden, I encourage you to strive for a life of purity before the Lord. Remember the promise we have in Psalm 84:11. He withholds no good thing from those who walk uprightly. His goodness for you is overflowing! Ask Him for it! Be encouraged that this kind of life is blessed by our Lord. I’ve seen it with my own eyes! (for more in-depth teaching on this topic, see Lauren, Khrystian, and Jordyn’s book Purely Woman—Awakening the Hear of God Through Pure Living in Our Generation, available at purelywoman.com)

Jordyn & her friends run The Virtuous Maiden Magazine : Go check it out!
Used by permission. No one may transfer this from this blog without permission given by author.

1 comment:

  1. Awesome post! It really spoke to me, thank you!

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