I remember looking in the mirror and staring at my face, nearly nose-to-nose with my reflection, trying to picture what I’d look like someday as an older girl. As a young woman. An older version of me.
I remember wanting to wear certain clothes that I thought were so cool, but grappling with the fact that my parents wouldn’t let me wear some of them.
I remember being in the store, fascinated with the magazines plastered with beautiful, seductive, airbrushed women. Wondering what love and beauty and romance was really all about.
Going through those stages from little girl to preteen, and preteen to teenager is quite the process. The timing is a little different for everyone, but for me it was during those transitions that I became keenly aware of my design as a girl.
I started thinking about things like modesty and fashion, boys and crushes, beauty and my appearance, sexuality and marriage a lot more than I had ever before. My upbringing, my worldview, the culture, and friends began to help shape the perspective I had of myself as a girl.
who gets to define you and me?
We really hate the idea of being told what to do, don’t we? At least I do, maybe more so than some people. I tend to be annoyed when someone is telling me to be a certain way and do something in particular. I know myself the best, right? Let me choose.
Actually, God is the only One qualified to define us and tell us who we are–how we should live, who we’re meant to be, what’s right and wrong.
Because He made us.
Back in the Garden of Eden, Eve (the first woman) was tempted to believe something false about God, and therefore herself.
Satan’s slippery words were enticing: “Did God actually say…?” (Genesis 3:1)
Questioning God caused her to question the correct view of herself. She figured she had better authority than God to decide.
This simple act of disobedience that she and Adam committed–by eating the fruit from the tree of knowledge of good and evil, the only tree they weren’t allowed to eat from–was the first sin. And now that we know the difference between good and evil, our broken selves prefer the evil over the good.
The fruit was “a delight to the eyes” (Genesis 3:6). It was attractive. Seemed harmless. Seemed better.
That view has trickled down into our view of ourselves today. We want to choose what’s right and good for us.
I’m me and no one else is. Who can tell me any different? we think.
Well, God can. Because He’s God–He’s the Creator.
Let’s be real. We like to hear what we like to hear. It irks our flesh to be informed that we have a wrong perspective on things. But the reality of who we are isn’t based on feelings. It’s based on God-ordained facts.
One of my very favorite authors is Elisabeth Elliot. A woman devoted to God, she was widowed twice, her first husband (Jim Elliot) speared to death in the Amazonian jungle as he and four others sought to bring the Gospel to a remote tribe. She experienced the Lord’s faithfulness as He carried her through the darkest valleys. She was an incredibly wise and godly woman and had such a wonderful, biblical perspective rooted in Scripture on discipleship and womanhood.
In her book, Let Me Be a Woman, Elisabeth says with honesty and humor:
There is, no doubt, a superficial sort of consolation and reassurance to be gained from sitting around telling how you feel about things. You generally find several others who feel the same way, or (what is even more reassuring and consoling) they feel worse than you do. But it is no way to come at the truth. In order to learn what it means to be a woman we must start with the One who made her.
This comes from the chapter “Not Who Am I? But Whose Am I?” Just like the name of this series, we know that if we’ve surrendered to the Lord in repentance and faith, we are daughters of the King. We are His.
a beautiful design
God’s Word displays what biblical manhood and womanhood is meant to be, and it is truly beautiful.
As followers of Christ, we submit our dreams, desires, sexuality, and lifestyle under the Lord’s direction. It might be the opposite of what we feel is right, but feelings aren’t facts. The Creator of the universe is trustworthy and His ways are perfect.
Proverbs 31:10-31 describes a godly woman. This passage isn’t long at all. I encourage you–whether you’ve read it three billion times or not–to read it. It’s headed as “The Woman that Fears the Lord.”
1 Timothy 2:9-10 describes how this respect and fear of the Lord affects our lives as girls:
…likewise also that women should adorn themselves in respectable apparel, with modesty and self-control, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly attire, but with what is proper for women who profess godliness—with good works.
Our focus–our identity–shouldn’t be placed on outward things: our appearance, having an aesthetic Instagram, perfect grades, a planned-out career path, a relationship, or whatever else vies for top priority in our hearts. First Timothy 2:9-10 and Proverbs 31 remind us that if we claim to be daughters of the King, our lives will bear fruit by how we act and how we view everything about Him, ourselves, the world, and our womanhood.
I could go on and on about this–biblical femininity is one of the most fun and challenging topics to talk about!
In addition to reading Proverbs 31, be sure to check out girldefined.com. GirlDefined Ministries is all about reclaiming God’s beautiful design for womanhood as we seek to be girls defined by God. Their books, blog, vlogs, Mentorship Course, Instagram, and conferences have been life changing for me and hundreds, if not thousands, of other girls and young women.
As daughters of the King, we have dug into what it looks like to put our identity in the Lord as His child, what it means to be a follower of truth, a servant of God and the people He’s placed in our lives, an ambassador for the Good News of the Gospel, and finally, to be a girl defined by our good Creator.
Stay tuned for a new series starting next week!
I’d love to hear from you!
- Do you find it hard or easy to allow God to define your girlhood / womanhood? In what ways?
- Which was your favorite episode of the Daughter of the King series? Why?