The Wife of His Youth


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Have you ever been in a place where you felt frustrated by what you saw in the mirror?  I think just about every mom can relate to this feeling.  I know I sure can. Most moms I know struggle with feelings of insecurity about their bodies—and having children can make it even more apparent.

Some time ago, I was preparing to speak at a women’s conference in Oregon. We were talking about self-image and how we could learn to see ourselves as God saw us instead of how the world saw us. I studied some passages and I came across Proverbs 5:18. I laughed to myself as I read the verse:

“May your fountain be blessed, and may you rejoice in the wife of your youth.”

I looked at my husband and said, as sarcastically as I could, “of course you’re supposed to rejoice in the wife of your youth! Let’s be honest! In a few short years the wife of your youth will be a distant memory!  Let’s be honest! Pretty soon, things will be sagging. my hair will lose it’s youthful shine and  Oil of Olay will be the only thing I won’t be able to live without. I’ll be old and tired, so you better rejoice in the wife of your youth right now, because when I’m old there won’t be much to rejoice about!”

My husband was looking at me with one eyebrow raised (as he often does) and he said something like, “Wow, babe. You need to stop reading People Magazine. That’s now how I see that verse at all!  When I read that verse, I imagine an old man sitting on the porch with the wife of his youth … you know—the one God gave to him when he was young—as this man looks at this older woman, just remembering the wife of his youth makes him smile.”

Hearing my husband’s take on this verse made me wonder how other women might interpret the verse and so I read it at the retreat.  Wouldn’t you know it—almost all the women saw the verse like I did! Most of the women that I talk to are very self conscious about our bodies.  And why shouldn’t we be?  We live in a culture that is literally consumed with sex and body image. All you have to do is go through the checkout at the grocery store to see pictures of “fat” women on the covers of magazines.

We all know that according to our culture, “fat” is defined as anyone who is over a size 6 who might have *gasp* cellulite!  In the name of beauty, women undergo liposuction, breast augmentation, tummy tucks, facelifts, eyelifts and even chin implants!  Instead of being seen as a sign of wisdom, wrinkles send 40-somethings running for Botox injections.

Now, I’m not suggesting these things are sinful. What I am saying is that we have a serious problem in our culture.  We’re bought into the lie that People Magazine knows more about beauty than God does.  It’s just not true. God’s word is so counter to the culture!  The Bible tells us that God is not concerned about outward things. He is ultimately concerned with the condition of our hearts.

Look at what Samuel said in I Samuel 16:7

“The Lord does not look at the things that man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”

You know, my husband is always reminding me that I am the wife of his youth.  The older I get, the more I appreciate what that really means.  Busy mom, you are the wife of your husband’s youth.  And the days are fleeting.  Nourish both your body and your spirit—and then enjoy your husband with your body every chance you get.

You are the wife of his youth. Beautiful inside and out. Enjoy the body God gave you. Don’t let the world cheat you out of enjoying the gift you’ve been given.

Rejoice—you’re the wife of your husband’s youth!



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Heidi St. John
Heidi St. John has been married to her husband Jay since 1989. Together they have seven children from toddler to adult and have homeschooled all the way through high school. A favorite conference and radio speaker, Heidi approaches marriage and parenting with humor and grace. Her passion to encourage moms and set them free to be who God has created them to be will bless and encourage you.
Heidi St. John
Heidi St. John
Heidi St. John

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17 Responses to The Wife of His Youth

  1. Oh my gosh, that is so funny!!! The mirror/shower thing!!! I try to put my contacts in after I get dressed for that reason!! :)

  2. Being a homeschool mom to 6 kiddos, I can completely relate. The words we speak to ourselves privately can wreak havoc. Thank you for this sweet reminder.

  3. I used to. I still try to work on my body, but more for being healthy. My husband has reminded me time and time again that I am good looking to him. Since I am not trying to impress anyone else, that’s good enough for me. It took a long time to get over the feelings of “ugliness” my dad put on me because I was not thin enough, smart enough, etc. I don’t worry about that any more. God loves me and my husband loves me just the way I am.

  4. I’m usually ok with my post pregnancy body, until I go bra shopping. I can’t count the number of times I’ve spent crying in a dressing room surrounded by bras that don’t fit. They just don’t make bras to fit women like me.

    • Tammy says:

      Maybe you have done this already but, we went to Macy’s & they actually are very helpful in getting a true fit. They can be spendy but, well worth it. (my girls are build quite different than me and this was an issue for us as well.)

  5. I think there is a typo, Heidi! You wrote “Now I am suggesting these things are sinful…” but contextually it sounds like you meant to say NOT sinful.

  6. Adrienne says:

    Oh, Amen! As I carry our seventh child, I’ve struggled with the image of the woman who stares back at me in the mirror, and yet my husband is happy and content. God isn’t concerned with my outward appearance. Thankful.

  7. The Busy Mom says:

    Haha! That’s what I get for writing so early in the morning :)

  8. Thank you for this blog!! Its just what I needed today. Ive gained about 10 lbs since ive quite nursing and none of my jeans have been really fitting lately. Ive felt kind of down about it and felt like I need to get this weight off of me. This blog made me realize that im focusing on my weight a little to much lately and ive been focusing less on the woman/wife/mother God made me to be. Some of the most beautiful (inside and out) women I know are not size 2. The society we live in truly does distract us from being the women God created us to be. In this world We are made to feel like less of a women just because we do not meet up to the “perfect body” standards of this world. I really worry for my little girls in this superficial society they are growing up in.

  9. Dennise Colina says:

    I have had a Breast Lift & Augmentation, Tummy Tuck & Liposuction, n I dont regret. And I would do it again…. I did it for me not for him…

  10. Lisa Jack says:

    u love reading your blog dear heidi!

  11. So thankful my husband has this attitude!

  12. Jean Jones says:

    Cacique lightly lined french full coverage bra. It does miracles. I believe goes down to 36 c.

  13. Sara Jaimes says:

    I just had this conversation with my husband. More about accepting compliments from him. He made a great point. When I don’t accept his compliment and return it with a put down, I actually make myself less appealing to him. He said it’s like getting excited to eat your favorite meal, only to have the chef tell you the chicken was overcooked and the rest of the ingredients were sub par. You’ll still eat it but it just doesn’t taste as good as you thought it would. On the other hand if the chef talks up the dish, it tastes even better than he expected!
    I need to remind myself that my husband is excited over my body (even difficult to type. Lol) and that I’m lucky he doesn’t see what I do. Receiving his compliment, let’s him enjoy his dish! 😉

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