Blog Archive

Monday, October 25, 2010

All the Single Ladies…

It has been on my heart for a while to write about being both a woman and being single.  Of course, it also requires me to place myself in a rather vulnerable position and be honest about some things.  Everyone loves being brutally honest on a blog that anyone (especially people that know said person) could easily read.

As a single woman in her thirties, I often get asked about my intentions for marriage.  “Do you want to get married?” is a frequent statement.  It is to the point that small children ask me why I am not married on a fairly consistent basis.  There is a few ways to take these inquiries, but only one that truly is honoring to God.

Response #1
  • I could respond with a flustered “Yes, of course I want to get married!”  Outwardly, I express enthusiasm for the idea of meeting someone and being married, but inwardly it is a different tale.  I chastise myself for obviously doing something wrong all these years.  There must be some flaw that is preventing me from meeting anyone (this is a lie I constantly struggle with).  I must be incomplete and can never be happy if I am not married.
  • I could start to lay out a plan to catch me a man!  Change the way I look and act until I become another person entirely.  Maybe I will pay $50-$100 to sign up for an online dating service (casting a larger net in hopes of finding the elusive “one”).
  • Side note:  I am not saying online dating is wrong, but I (and a few of my friends) would agree that it affects women differently than men.  For me, it is like prostituting myself in front of men I do not know, that may or may not be men of God and are most likely more concerned about satisfying their desires.  There is an excellent article by Carolyn McCulley on her blog; Radical Womanhood that I would encourage all to read about looking at your motivations for participating in online dating.
  • In this response, I have tried to make myself sovereign over my life and find my identity in another person.  Even if I were to become married, under the above assumptions, it would be a disastrous marriage.  My husband would let me down and suddenly my entire world that I had built around the alter of our marriage would crumble.
Response #2

  • I could respond, “If God wanted me married, then I would be.”  (I have never said this aloud, but it has been in my thoughts.)  Taking offense to this inquiry leads me down a dark road.  I begin to resent the people that ask it and then take offense with the idea of marriage and of men.  Soon I am turned off to the idea of marriage and determine to live my life out alone because it gives me the freedom to live my life the way I want.  I do not have to answer to anyone!
  • Or, I could put a godly spin on my bad attitude and state that God has made me single and that it is wrong of me to desire something like marriage as it is obvious that is not something He has planned for me.
  • In this response, I have taken the gift of marriage that God freely gives to those He chooses and spat on it.  I have decided that marriage is the worst thing that could happen to me and looked to find worth within what I do, what I want, etc.  My life is about me.  This harsh response is actually a mask to cover my real response.  I am not worthy to be married.  God looks at me and sees this wretched sinner that has no business being in a relationship.  I cannot even manage a regular quiet time with God; how could I handle a thing like marriage that is supposed to be a reflection of Jesus and the church!
Response #3
  • I could respond honestly.  “You know, I do desire to get married, if it is God’s will for me and sometimes it is a struggle that I am not.”  I could be honest about my tendency to not always respond in this manner.  I could ask for prayer and tell people how they could help me keep my heart from stumbling headlong into sin regarding this area.

  • Instead of looking at marriage as something that completes me, I could see it as one a many ways God could bless me and stretch me.  I focus on what God has already done; how He has provided for me and realize that I am well cared for and loved.  Married or not, I lack nothing.  I do not need to change myself because God has uniquely crafted me (I wish I believed this more).  Though I struggle with sin, I am clothed in the righteousness of another.
  • This response requires me to see myself as God sees me.  I am His child, His heir, a forgiven sinner whose greatest need has been met.  If God were to withhold any more blessings the rest of my life; I would have to declare with joy that He has blessed me richly beyond measure because He has!  Marriage is a wonderful and special gift, but it is not my everything.  Jesus is my everything.  It is not wrong to desire a gift, but I do not want to love a gift more than the gift-bearer.
So, I think it is easy to fall into one of these three responses, my hope is to be like Response #3 always, but the other two show up in my life all the time.  Marriage will not make or break me, why do I worry about it so?  All I can do is pray, confess and look to my savior to show me the truth.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Just Pondering

So, I have not updated in a while and I bet a few of you are wondering if I will ever finish my book review.

Well, I have had my doubts as well, but I think that I will finish it.  Why have I not been posting?  I have been thinking about posting a lot, but I am more concerned about what I post than when I post.  Now I know that I do not have a million readers (heck, I probably barely have ten), but I want to be intentional about what I write.

I still want to do fun updates and post pictures, but it seems that if a person is posting something on to the world wide web then it ought to mean something.  I'm not talking about every post being a life changing experience, but I would like a little more depth and thought to go into what I write.

So that is where I am at the moment, stuck in my head.  In fact this very post has been running through my thoughts for about six weeks.  It feels good to get it out of my head and onto my computer screen.  What will be posted in the coming weeks?  I have no idea, but I hope that it is something worthy of being read and something that makes you think.  It might make you laugh (because I like to laugh), I doubt it will make you cry (because I am lousy at writing sad things) and who knows it might make you rethink the way you look at the world.

If not, well, I tried.

One last thing!  If you like to write or want to write and need some motivation, next month is NaNoWriMo, aka National Novel Writing Month.  The challenge is to write a 50,000 word novel.  Don't stop to edit or make sure your storyline is accurate, just write until you can write no more!  Several friends of mine are participating and I am giving it serious thought as well.  You can learn more at:

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Updates and Camping...

So, it has been awhile since I updated. I promise that the next installment of my review of Voices will be coming soon, but I thought a fun update was in order. I wanted to post some pictures of a few of the trips I took this summer. I actually traveled to Virginia twice and went camping twice: once at the Southern Oregon coast and one in Cougar, WA.

Now I realize many of you may have had to stop and re-read the previous system. Yes, I actually went camping and no, I didn't die...but it was close. ;-)

So first off, I traveled to Virginia for my dear friend Sandy's wedding!
Sandy & Me

What a lovely bride!

Sandy & Jim
 There was a forecast for rain, but the weather held out and Sandy and Jim had a beautiful beach wedding!

The following month, I traveled to Sunset Bay, OR with my friends Holly and Karen.  It was a great time and that was in part because we camped in a yurt, which is way better than a tent!  I took so many great photos that I cannot post them all so here is a link.  Karen was awesome in the face of adversity and refused to let the Coleman stove get the better of her.  I even started a fire with corn chips!

On a side note, it is interesting that people out here refer to the beach as the coast.  I guess it is because the water is so cold that they don't do much swimming (or course I could be totally wrong!).

Finally, this past weekend I went camping with my church.  In a tent.  It was cold.  I survived.  I also fried enough bacon to feed a small army!  We spent about three days in Cougar, which is fairly close to Mt. St. Helens.  On Sunday, we got to enjoy the outdoors, worship and listen to one of our members deliver a sermon.  So what did this trip look like?  Let me show you!

Susan & Holly enjoying refreshments!
The men doing manly things like chopping wood and starting fires.
Yale Lake
You can see Mt. St. Helen's in the background!
So that is my fun update!  I always enjoy sharing pictures of my little adventures!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Voices of the True Woman Movement: Part Two

Welcome to Part Two of the Voices of the True Woman Movement book! I am going to depart a bit from my usual overview of key chapter points this week as just the theme for this section has significantly impacted me. Part Two is entitled, The Battle for True Womanhood.

A battle.

When is the last time you engaged in a battle? Now ladies, beating out ten other women to get a pair of shoes in a sample sale does not qualify. Nor does Mafia Wars or Medieval Battleplex or whatever the games are called these days on Facebook (I just block these applications anymore).

You may not remember a time that you passionately fought for something you truly believed in and you are not alone. I think the issue has to do partly with apathy. Many of us look at the battle and decide there is little we can do to change the situation and really, who wants to make waves? Instead, we will just quietly go along and let biblical standards be altered. This may be a reason behind the success of the feminist movement. Here was a group of women that were fervent in their desire to reshape womanhood. How hard have we fought against this movement? In the end, their passion was rewarded as womanhood today is a far cry from the biblical model God provided us.

Why did we allow this to happen? I think part of it has to do with shame. We are ashamed of the gospel.

You read that right; we are ashamed of the gospel. Now some of you might say, “Christina, I love the gospel! Jesus died for my sins and I live for him now!” I agree that you love Jesus, but secretly you are ashamed to be set apart from the world. The world says womanhood should look differently than God intended. The issue is not with the world, it is with us. We long to be more like the world than we do God because we live in the world and want to be accepted by it more. It causes us to modify our faith in that it is okay to love Jesus as long as we do not look like crazed fanatics.

That doesn't sound very biblical does it?

To love the gospel means we are to do battle with the world. Now I am not saying we are to go out and beat people down in the name of Christ. We are not fighting against people, we are fighting against sin. John Piper once referred to this in a sermon I heard at a New Attitude conference. He stated that “the fight for faith is a fight to the death.” In other words, we can never stop fighting, as long as we live on this side of heaven, we will face temptation to be like the world.

Several years ago, I was publicly ridiculed for my beliefs. I was talking privately with co-workers about my understanding of biblical womanhood and marriage. Even the self-declaring Christians in the group looked at me as if I had grown two extra heads. They quickly spread the account of our conversation to everyone in the work place. This resulted in men constantly approaching me and asking me really inappropriate questions. The women would stand off in the distance and laugh. Having integrity and being willing to stand for what you believe in is going to result in being ridiculed, put down and possibly persecuted. Battles are not meant to be easy. You will break a sweat; you will feel anguish and heartache.

Remember what Paul stated in the book of Romans:

“For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes…” (Romans 1:16)

To the world, biblical womanhood is folly. We women must be crazy to subjugate ourselves before men! That is what the world sees. What I see is women subjugating themselves before a holy and awesome God. Just as men do. God has assigned us roles. Our Creator has said to us, “I created you and want to see you serve in this role as it glorifies Me.” Our role as women, glorifies God. The world’s version of womanhood glorifies ourselves. Who are we to worship ourselves?

Do not be ashamed that God has set you apart from the world, for He has made you to be a light in the darkness. Embrace this amazing gift!

My next post will be on Part Three: The Refining of True Womanhood.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Voices of the True Woman Movement: Part One

I believe some of you may be wondering why it has taken me so long to write the next installment of this book review. According to the timeline I provided you on June 3rd, I should have written this section by June 17th. However, here we are nearly a month after that self-imposed deadline and I am only just now writing this post.

June was a difficult month for me. My grandfather passed away and I had to return to Virginia for his funeral. Death is never easy for those left to live. I did much to occupy myself last month and did not feel inclined to read much of anything, to include Voices of the True Woman Movement. I tried to exist in my own strength for a time, but it can never last. In fact, as I picked up the book to read part one, the first two chapters told me that. It is a shame I did not read it sooner.

Part One contains the Foundations of True Womanhood. The contributors are John Piper and Nancy Leigh DeMoss. Their objective: to help women look at themselves rightly.

What do I mean by that, look at themselves rightly?

Well, our culture (particularly Western culture) tells us that everything is relative and the world should be interpreted through our own eyes as our experiences make our perspectives unique. My world may not look like your world, so if I view womanhood differently it is because it is different in my world. This is an inaccurate view.

We try to see who God is through the lens of ourselves, but we are going about it backwards. We need to see who we are through the lens of God! John Piper believes that when our worldview is self-centered, it results in wimpy theology. Piper is not a fan of wimpy theology and his belief is that wimpy theology leads to wimpy women. I agree with him. The Bible tells us time and again that our strength comes from God. If we look to ourselves for the source of our strength, we will indeed be a wimpy people. My strength fails me constantly. There is little I can do on my own, though I am often deluded to believe otherwise.

So how are we to understand who we are in God? Nancy Leigh DeMoss used a scripture that I believe is most helpful:

“Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! “For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who has been his counselor?” “Or who has given a gift to him that he might be repaid?” For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen.” (Romans 11:33-36 ESV)

In her chapter, DeMoss breaks down each part of this verse. It tells us a lot about who God is and conversely who we are. God is in control, we are not. God is limitless, we are limited. There is nothing God cannot know and our minds are finite, able only to scratch the surface of things. She quotes John Piper in regards to the contrast between God and man: “In every situation and circumstance of your life, God is always doing a thousand different things that you cannot see and you do not know.”

To begin to look at what it means to be a woman of God means to begin to look at God first. Our foundation is in Him and through Him we will find our purpose.

Please join me in a week to learn about Part Two, The Battle for True Womanhood.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Voices of the True Woman Movement: Overview and Introduction

The book has arrived!

This past weekend I received Voices of the True Woman Movement in the mail. As mentioned in an earlier blog posting, I have the opportunity to review this book for the True Woman Movement. Before I begin though, I thought I should answer some questions that might be floating around in your minds…

1. What this book is about?
This book is a collection of messages that were given at the True Women Movement Conference in 2008. This book will have messages from Nancy Leigh DeMoss, John Piper, Mary Kassian, Joni Eareckson Tada and Janet Parshall. They are calling for women to hold tight to the Word of God and find their purpose and identity in Jesus Christ.

2. Who should read my reviews?
Everyone! If you are a woman, this book is for you. If you are a man, surely you have women in your life (mother, sister, wife, daughter, etc.) that you could share this with. There are no “special secrets” for women’s eyes only that are going to be shared here, just plain biblical truths.

3. How is this going to work?
The book itself is broken down into four parts, two chapters per part plus some additional materials at the end. My intention is to post every two weeks, beginning today and ending the last week in August. I will cover two chapters every post and I hope to include thoughts from other women in my church.

As a side note, I know that not everyone who sees my blog is a Christian or holds to the same views I do regarding biblical womanhood. I hope that you will take time to read these reviews and I encourage open and honest dialogue about any areas you may struggle with.

Now, an introduction to the book!

The book begins by reminding us how we are bombarded by voices. Voices in the media, our families and our churches. Some purpose to degrade us, others to deceive or lead us astray from the truth. We need to listen for THE VOICE who never lies. Once we are able to hear how God desires for us to live, we must spread the word. For we should never keep the truth hidden. Jesus asked the disciples a pointed question,”… do people light a lamp and put it under a basket,[no,] but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house” (Matthew 5:15, ESV). This question almost deserves a “duh” response. Of course you wouldn’t put a lamp under a basket, it defeats the whole purpose! However, we often hide our Christianity from the world in order to assimilate with the culture. It is time to take a stand for the truth.

The overarching scripture reference for this book is

“Who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” (Esther 4:14, NKJV).

God does not place us haphazardly in this world. We are part of His intricate plan, NOW is the time for us to spread the truth and love of God to others!

I look forward to walking with you through this book!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Book Review Coming...Maybe

Hi all!

Right now I am in Virginia visiting family and friends. I just wanted to update you about some possible new blog posts that could appear this summer. On Facebook, I am a fan of the True Women Movement and they offered to send bloggers a copy of this book:

Voices of the True Woman Movement

Once we read it, we are to blog about it by September 1st. I put my name in the pot, so hopefully it will be in the mail soon. I am looking forward to sharing it all with you!

I will be uploading pics of my trip once I get back to Washington (it helps if you have a computer that takes SD cards!).