What place does femininity have in modern society? If you look at what the media says, there's not much room for it.
The other day while watching Doc McStuffins for the millionth time, there was an episode where a toy princess has something caught in her hair. She needed help getting it out, but the toy prince misinterpreted her dilemma as needing to be rescued. Seeing as that's what he did best, he went about rescuing her. But she was highly offended at this act. She didn't need to be rescued and told him as much. Furthermore, she added that she could do anything a prince could do...and better. She then challenged him to a contest to prove her "equalness." Turns out, she proved she was better and had to rescue him. The show ended with him apologizing for doubting her ability to do anything a male could do.
Whoa, that's not the message I want to send to my little girl. Sure, I want her to know that the sky is the limit and not to let anyone box her in when she's well capable. But I don't want her thinking that she has to match a man's ability toe to toe.
It seems to be a forgotten fact that we were created male and female by God. Each sex has a specific purpose and strength. And each complements the other. The older I get, the less patient I am with women who want to do everything men can do and better. Seems like the perfect recipe to emasculate a man.
My strengths as a woman are vastly different from a man's strengths. I don't see many men running to compete with woman on what they are best designed to do. It's ludicrous for us to do the same. But all we have to do is take a look back at the Garden of Eden to see where things took a turn. Satan came along and made Eve believe that she needed to take something that wasn't hers. And so began the struggle for dominion over a man.
When Even took that fruit, she was also taking authority and dominance (the things she wasn't created to take). And ever since women have been grabbing for dominance, grabbing to be just like men when we were created to be women, which is a beautiful thing by itself. Women are grabbing to take authority over their husbands and taking matters into their own hands just like Eve.
I don't want that for my daughter. I don't want her grabbing for what's not hers to take. I want her to learn the beauty of accepting what's given like Mary, the mother of Jesus. She gladly accepted the will of God for her life and the fruit of that was a submission that is admirable. She said, "Behold, the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word."
Women, we are naturally designed to receive (even our bodies are designed that way). Taking is outside of our nature and we've got to teach our daughters that they don't have to go through life taking, grasping and groping. When we gladly accept the gift of femininity, we are free to be who God created us to be. And really, why would you want to be anything else?
When Eve took that fruit what she was saying in essence was, “Be it unto me according to my word."
"And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat; and she gave also unto her husband with her, and he did eat."
Taking and giving: innocent gestures right? Not when we look at them in the light of how God designed women.
There's nothing wrong with stepping up when the situation warrants it, but women, let's not be aggressive or pushy outside of our nature. And lest you think I'm an anti-feminist, on most points I'm not. I believe in the suffrage movement which brought about women's right to vote and I'm all for equality in pay. What I'm not for is women thinking they need to be like men as they make their way through this world. Sure, women can be leaders. But women don't need to lead like men to be effective.
“It is a naive sort of feminism that insists that women prove their ability to do all the things that men do. This is a distortion and a travesty. Men have never sought to prove that they can do all the things women do. Why subject women to purely masculine criteria? Women can and ought to be judged by the criteria of femininity, for it is in their femininity that they participate in the human race. And femininity has its limitations. So has masculinity." - Elisabeth Elliot
There's a strength and beauty in femininity that can only come when we accept God's design for women. Ladies, we don't have to take a man, a job or authority. God will give it to us just like He did for Esther and Ruth and Elizabeth.
Esther was given her petition.
Ruth received Boaz as her husband.
Elizabeth was given a baby in her old age.
They all received what was given. Don't believe the lie that just because you are a woman that you have to take and push for what you want.
Bottom line: I pray for my daughter that she will discover the wonder of being a woman. And once she does that she learns to walk in womanhood with grace and confidence just the way God designed her to.