Monday, April 11, 2011

A Gold Ring in a Pig's Snout

My mother in 1938

"Like a gold ring in a pig's snout
is a beautiful woman without discretion."
Proverbs 11:22

Don't you love to be surrounded by beauty? I love to have pretty things in my home, to go outside and sit in my garden on a lovely sunny day, to wear pretty clothing, and yes--I also like to wear makeup! I don't want to frighten someone when I walk out of the house! One of my mother's favorite sayings when I was young was, "If you want to be beautiful, you have to suffer a little." She was the ultimate lady in poise, grace and beauty. My retort when I was growing up was, "If I have to suffer, then I don't want to be beautiful." I like comfort, also! discretion [dɪˈskrɛʃən]: the quality of being wise or judicious in avoiding mistakes or faults; prudent; circumspect; cautious; not rash.” In other words, discretion is exercising judgment tempered with caution in order to arrive at a final decision or outcome.

I have 9 beautiful granddaughters. Physically beautiful girls.
Gorgeous. Head turners. I know, you say it's impossible for
all nine of them to be beautiful. But it's true. Just ask me! Now,
I don't want them to be like gold rings in a pig's snout.

Matthew Henry's comment on this verse is so apropos:

"1. It is taken for granted here that beauty or comeliness of body is as a jewel of gold, a thing very valuable, and, where there is wisdom and grace to guard against the temptations of it, it is a great ornament.
Virtue appears peculiarly graceful when associated with beauty
but a foolish wanton woman, of a light carriage, is fitly compared
to a swine, though she be ever so handsome, wallowing in the
mire of filthy lusts, with which the mind and conscience are defiled,
and, though washed, returning to them.

2. It is lamented that beauty should be so abused as it is by those that have not modesty with it. It seems ill-bestowed upon them; it is quite misplaced, as a jewel in a swine's snout, with which he roots in the dunghill. If beauty be not guarded by virtue, the virtue is exposed by the beauty. It may be applied to all other bodily endowments and accomplishments; it is a pity that those should have them who have not discretion to use them well."
Matthew Henry's Commentary

Mothers and grandmothers, let's teach our girls discretion. Outward beauty is an easy thing to accomplish in this day of pretty clothing and makeup, howbeit entailing a little "suffering" to get that way. But discretion, bringing about an inner beauty of the heart, is a thing to be worked on and practiced.

I started to say, "Good luck!" But it takes much more than luck.

Suffering together,


Cranberry Morning

This is a great post, Gloria!! I think my mother's generation and surely hermother's generation did actually suffer for beauty. Yikes! Keep those corsets and pointy-toed shoes away from me!

Love Matthew Henry's commentary on this. (I am always amazed by that man's insight!)

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