You want to boldly live out the life you were designed to have, right?
But something keeps holding you back!
That was the same experience this woman shared with me. I just stopped over at a shop to see someone and as I was about leaving, a woman called my attention and requested she ask me some questions. With all pleasure, I said, yes!
Then she went on to ask about my conviction on some things regarding women’s appearance. Prayerfully, I from the bible gave her suitable answers while she listened attentively. After my short sermon, she thanked me and then made a startling comment along these lines – “well, the Spirit of God has spoken to me in line with what you just said, but I’ve not been able to start doing it. You see, I work in such a place, and don’t know how I will feel, and what my colleagues will say or think if I start appearing that way”.
I further encouraged her to obey the Spirit of God and not be so mindful of what people will say and think – she obliged and was grateful.
As I walked away from that discussion, my mind ran through a lot of thoughts. One was how fear could hold us back from being who we are and living out the true life we were created to live.
Femininity, which can be said to be the sum of all attributes that convey womanhood, have got various parties attempting to define what it is and what it is not – the world with its trendy version, and the feminists with their twisted version.
True femininity can however be only defined and explained to us by the God who designed femininity, and who is Truth Himself (“Jesus said unto Him, I am the way the truth and the life…” John 14:6). The definitions and assertions of the world (trendy and twisted) will keep changing, but “the truth of the Lord endureth forever” (Psalm 117:2). So if you want really understand and live out true femininity, then you must fully embrace God’s design – biblical femininity.
But just like the case of the woman in the story above, there is a monster that always want to hold us back from living out biblical femininity. It is called FEAR…
Analysis of fear
Things that induce fear are presented to us in various ways…
- Misrepresentation and attack by people against God’s standard for modesty, purity, and other factors that characterize biblical femininity, and God’s plan for your life.
- Even your own mind could be screaming negative words into your head…It’s impossible! You’re not smart enough! What would people say/think!
But you know what, if I sum up all those things and more and spell them out in one phrase; it is simply – False Evidence Appearing Real!
Yes, that’s what they all are. When you pass them through the bible, you’ll find them all to be false. And do you know what fear does?
Fear bottles you up!
The bible says, “the fear of man bringeth a snare… (Prov 29:25). It traps and takes hold of you, stopping you from living the life God has created you to live. To better understand the enslaving effect of fear, just take some time and ponder on “what your life look like if you weren’t afraid”? You’ll be amazed at what fear holds you back from attaining.
So girls, to live out true femininity, we have to be FEARLESS!
Firm: In a world that pushes us on every angle, wanting us succumb and dance to their ideas, we must remain firm – strong and securely fixed in a place, with a resolute determination and strength of character. There is no place to remain strongly fixed than on the word of God. [1 Corinth 16:13].
Empowered: We need to possess the power, strength and confidence that will enable us take control of our lives, without yielding to the pressure mounted on us by the world. Such empowerment comes from a daily communion with God through study of His word and prayers, as well learning from other inspiring materials (books, videos, audios, bog posts, etc).
Alert: Most of these arrows thrown against true femininity come subtly, unannounced, and covered up as ‘harmless’. We must therefore be awake, on guard and very watchful so as to discern and dispel them. Guard your eyes, ears and heart as you, respectively, watch, listen to and think about things you come across daily. Filter everything through the word of God.
Redeemed: Fear and bondage are inseparable partners. When you live in fear, you are in bondage; if you are in bondage, you will be fearful. Sin keeps one in bondage. That’s the reason, Paul, when talking about his past slavery to sin said “… I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members” (Rom 7:23). Then testifying of Christ’s redemptive (saving) work, he said, “I thank God through our Lord …” (Rom 7:25), “who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem (save, rescue, deliver) us from all iniquity (sin) and purify unto Himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works” (Titus 2:14). When you ask Jesus into your heart, he redeems you from sin and liberates you from the yoke of fear.
Loving: “There is no love in fear; but perfect love casteth out fear; because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love” (1 John 4:18). If we love God completely, we’ll give ourselves to him in total obedience and hence won’t be afraid of the punishment that awaits disobedient people. If we love others unselfishly, we won’t be evil-minded and suspicious towards them even if they appear to be our enemies (knowing that our real enemy is the devil) – there will therefore be no need for fear. If we love ourselves wholly, as peculiar treasures of God, we will be confident in whom God created us to be and live it out fearlessly.
Enthusiastic: Enthusiastic persons have this excitement, life and hopeful spirit in them. Not just when everything is going on fine, but even in the dark uncertain days of life. The secret to an enthusiastic life is found right in the word – “enthusiasm.” The word “enthusiasm” comes from the Greek word en theos. En is the Greek word for the English word “in”. Theos is the Greek word for “God.” So en theos means to be “in God”. When you get in God, you will be enthusiastic. Not the kind that is affected by the storms of life, but one that lasts because it is tied to the everlasting God.
Strong: One of the bible ladies I love so much (the Proverb 31 woman) is said to have “strength and honour” as her clothing (Prov 31:25). The path of true femininity is not for wimpy and spineless girls. You’ve got to be strong: Spiritually – “be strong in the Lord… (Ephe 6:10-17); Emotionally – I used to be this person who could be so deeply touched (recoil and even cry) by people’s reaction, but I’ve learnt to overcome that. So friend, like I’ll now do – drop whatever doesn’t go down well with you, shake yourself up and keep moving… “… Quit ye like men, be strong…” (1 Corinth 16:13); Physically – laziness and indolence has nothing to do with true femininity. Get your hands to work!; Vocally – Let your yes and no be said boldly and confidently.
Set-apart: As girls who desire to live out true femininity, God calls us to live a life set apart from the world. “Wherefore come out from among them and be ye separate saith the Lord… (2 Corinth 6:17). As Elisabeth Elliot rightly said, “The fact that I am a woman does not make me a different kind of Christian, but the fact that I am a Christian makes me a different kind of woman.”
Attention! Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man (Eccl 12:13).