The other day I sat in a course on sexual dysfunction. The instructor was teaching about the harmful effects of birth control on our hormones, and it was super informative. But then she said something that made me pause. She said that she was SO glad she didn’t have any daughters. She’d hate to have to decide whether to put them on birth control or not, because she knew the harmful effects, but wouldn’t want them to get pregnant if they were sexually active as teenagers.
And my heart dropped a little. Have you heard a similar narrative before? “I’m so glad I don’t have girls b/c I hate my own body and I don’t know how I’d navigate that with them.” OR “I’m so thankful I am just raising boys b/c I don’t want to mess with fighting them over clothes and modesty.”
I’ve heard it. And you know what, I do get where they’re coming from. As a woman who struggled a good chunk of her life with body image disorder and a couple of years of disordered eating, I truly do get it. But guess what, I think we’re looking at it wrong. We see the issues in the world that our girls will face and we feel disheartened. “I don’t want to have girls and have to deal with that.” Let’s take a step backward and start from the beginning.
God created males AND females in His image. In the image of God HE created them. In HIS OWN IMAGE. Different – yes. But created from God, In HIS design, for HIS glory.
God’s original design was GOOD.
And then the fall happened. Eve fell to temptation, and so did her husband. The serpent deceived her with his lies, twisting truth in his cunning ways, and making her doubt the goodness of her God. He made her believe that God was holding out on them. Perhaps He wasn’t as good as He seemed. And so she ate, and her eyes were opened.
And everything changed.
We could stop there, and I think we often do. Sin is in the world and in us. The world is fallen and scary and sad and unfair. Truth is twisted and certainly, darkness penetrates every ounce of goodness God declared. What God made good, Satan will no doubt twist to make evil.
But is that where God stopped? No. He didn’t. He had a plan all along. He knew that this man and woman who He created in His likeness would fall, and though they sinned, His love for them never stopped. And so from the beginning, He knew He’d need a redemption plan, and He sent His Son Jesus at the perfect time, to be the ultimate sacrifice for our sin. He died for your freedom and mine – for every single man and woman, girl and boy, who calls Him Lord!
Our GOOD GOD is not holding out on us – because of this redemption, He is in the process of redeeming and restoring ALL things, and we can trust that He’ll do it in us. We can trust that He wants to restore us to our original design in the garden and teach us how to walk in freedom each day. That’s not a sinless life, but it IS a life learning how to walk with the Spirit, claim the Promises of the Father, and see His redemptive work here on this earth!
So how do we apply that practically, and what does this have to do with raising girls? When we live as if girls are so difficult to raise because of what they face in their design, we live as if God isn’t truly good. If we can declare that He made goodness in the garden, then we can declare that the design of females is good now as well. Though the world may be sinful, God is STILL good, reigns sovereign, and HE wants to make His glory known through the role of females on this earth by continuing to redeem and restore all things. This includes feminine character and design, sex, the female role in marriage, body image, and so much more.
I consider it a privilege to raise girls because I GET to be a part of that redemptive work here on this earth! I GET to raise girls who understand who they are in Christ and who HE created them to be in HIS fullness! I GET to raise girls that know they aren’t just objects to be prized, stared at, abused, or neglected. I GET to raise girls that know JESUS is the ultimate prize, and as reflectors of HIM, their value is beyond compare, far more than skin deep, and the King of kings has called them His own. Love changes everything.
You guys…this is the message that will change the world. This is the message that will change our culture. This is the message that will break the chains of body image, eating disorders, immodesty, striving, sex to buy love, and looking for worth in the eyes of a man. When THIS is the message we give our daughters, we do not need to fear. Will they still struggle? Yes, they might. But if we are CONSTANTLY sharing this Truth with them, praying daily for them, and speaking wise counsel over them, we can trust GOD with their hearts – that He is going to continue to make His beauty known in them and bring them to a life of freedom.
How I LONG to see the next generation set free. How I long to see the next generation live differently because they’ve been raised by women who have already been set free. I’m so thankful I get to raise daughters – because these daughters are going to change culture and change the world.