Thursday, June 12, 2014

If I Have a Daughter

Girls. Now that's something I know about. For years I was the oldest of four, close little girls. One of those girls was my sister and two were my cousins. Now, we weren't always your typical Barbie doll and glamorous jewelry type of girls. We had some ragged spunk which involved long, dirty afternoons outside making large, fun messes.

My family adopted Clara when I was 12 years old. Daddy and Mama were pretty convinced that God wanted our family to be all daughters and no sons... until He laid Andrew in our laps and on our hearts. But for many years, it was just us girls. 

Though most of my friends and family doubt this baby I am going to have in a few months is a girl, I still wouldn't be too surprised if this baby were to be daughter. There is a 50/50 chance after all! 

How do you raise a girl? How do you guide her in the path of the Truth?

Just like with boys, I believe that raising daughters these days is harder than it may have been years ago. There is such a propaganda fed to women. Lies from the feminist community. These lies have been around since the beginning of time... ever since Satan whispered to Eve, "You can be in charge. You can be God." Certainly women shouldn't be treated like servants and treated poorly. There is a powerful truth much deeper. Women have a great and powerful role. 

If I have a daughter, I want her to know how valuable she is. A precious gift. Too many girls are seeking approval from others, but all in the wrong places. I want my daughter to know that she doesn't need countless "selfies" and hundreds of FaceBook "likes" to be special. She doesn't need a boyfriend when she is young and immature. I pray that she and I are close, but also importantly, I pray that she and her daddy are close. A girl who feels protected and loved by her father is usually satisfied with him being the one guarding her heart until she is given away in marriage to a man who is capable and trusted to protect and love her as strongly as her daddy has for years.

It's quite possible for my list to drag on for miles of all the things I want her to know, but what's most important to me is that she comes to Jesus and accepts Him as her Lord and Savior and seeks to serve Him daily. I want to be an example of what she should be, though I know I'm very imperfect.

I'm convinced that a woman can be strong and tough and still be gentle and meek. She can be opinionated without being a feminist. She can be beautiful without looking cheap and gaudy. She can be unique and still be admired.

If our baby is a girl, I pray God would help us teach her these things.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

So Long Selfies

So Long Selfies, by Kandace Brown (guest blogger)

We are living in a generation of young people that is all about taking and uploading selfies for the world to see. For those who might not know what a selfie is here is the dictionary meaning of the word, "A photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically one taken with a smartphone or webcam and uploaded to a social media website". 

I have come to realize over the last few months how "selfish" selfies truly can be... It's almost like we are saying "Look at me. I look good today so I want everyone on Facebook or Instagram to see it." I am not pointing fingers because I have taken and uploaded selfies before. This is something that I have recently felt convicted about. 

If you think about it selfies can be very narcissistic and prideful. I know girls who post two or three a day. What is this saying? What are we trying to say or show off? Why should we find value in ourselves by how many people like our picture? Why should we feel upset when we don't get as many likes as we hoped for? These are questions that I have recently asked myself. 

Selfies are mostly a girl thing (although I do know a few guys who post them)... Coming from personal experiences I know that we girls will take dozens of pictures of ourselves when we feel that we look good or we like our outfit. When we finally take one that we think looks good enough we will then doctor it up (with an Instagram filter or an editing app or whatever we choose to use) and then we post it. Then we wait.... We wait to see who will like it and how many likes we will end up getting. It can easily set up jealousy in a girl's heart. She could see that her friend got 80 likes for her selfie and that she only got 25 for hers. She could start wondering why people liked her friend's picture more than hers or think that she just isn't as pretty or stylish as her friend. As silly as it may sound it can begin stirring feelings of bitterness or consternation in a girl's heart. It will start to make her self value deflate rapidly and that can lead to many problems... 

There are also girls who can develop the opposite problem. When they get many likes and comments about how beautiful they are it can be the beginning of a pride issue. They can begin thinking they are better than other girls and start posting more and more pictures because they get addicted to that feeling of being "liked". All girls need a flattering comment every once in a while and when you can post a picture of yourself and get dozens of likes and flattering comments then girls will naturally be drawn to that. Pride is very hard to break once it has been set in the heart of someone. It is so important that we don't become obsessed with the comments and likes of something as seemingly harmless as a picture we took of ourselves. 

I feel that selfies are hurting our generation more than we know. They can become a sign of vanity and as we all know vanity can lead to many bad things. (Proverbs 16:18) So as the title says, I have decided to say so long to selfies. Yes, I have taken them and posted them before, but my eyes have been opened to how very harmful and pointless they can be. This will, of course, sound strange coming from a 16 year old girl, but this is my heart and I wanted to share my recent conviction on the matter. Just thoughts to ponder. :)

Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight. 1 Peter 3:3-4