"Choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.” Joshua 24:15

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Grace for the Good Girl in All of Us

Ah…Grace for the Good Girl. That’s the book I’m reading. It’s written by Emily Freeman, and gosh, does it resonate with me. Not the, ‘I need to be a good girl in order to get into heaven,’ kind of resonate. And not the, ‘I’m a worrier with fears and anxieties that my ‘good girl’ image is not controlling’ kind of resonate. Rather, the ‘let’s let grace pour out boundless acceptance into my worn out heart and totally undo me,’ kind of resonate. The, ‘releasing my tight hold on that familiar, try hard life, leaning my weight heavy into the love of Jesus,’ kind of resonate.  It totally reminds me of Stasi Eldredge’s book, Captivating, whose Bible Study I taught for many years. Tapping into the deep mysteries of the feminine soul in order to recapture the heart. It reminds me that every woman desires to romanced, to play an irreplaceable role in a heroic adventure and to have a beauty all her own to unveil.  When I look at the movies I love and remember the games I played as a little girl, I need to remember that these heart-felt desires are God-given and are telling me the truth about who I am as a woman and  the role I am meant to play and, most importantly, I should not feel guilty for having them.

Wow! That’s a lot of femininity wrapped up in the last paragraph. Kind of deep, I know. But it’s true.  Even down to the last syllable.  Give me a woman who doesn’t want to be romanced, to play an irreplaceable role in a heroic adventure and have a beauty all her own, and I’ll give you a great price on some swamp land in Florida. I mean, they just don’t exist. There may be a woman, somewhere in another galaxy of this great universe, that doesn’t resonate with those wants, but I know that God created all woman alike (to some degree), with virtually the same wants, desires and needs. So….as long as we are human, we females have a lot to discover about ourselves.

I think my generation is virtually the last generation who really feels the need to tap into their femininity.  I mean, Gloria Steinhem (uggh—I don’t like even writing her name), the pro-abortion movement (out to kill unborn woman), Planned Parenthood (run by woman not supporting other woman), the burn your bra and wave the flag, anti Vietnam woman----definitely not my generation. Thank God. Nope, I was technically the generation before that. Yes, I am that old. I’ve tried to teach my tomboy daughters how to tap into their feminine spirit, how to get that ‘grace for the good girl,’ without always having to be a good girl. To their credit, they always want to change the definition of good girl, and by doing so, they are always playing with my mind. Geesh!

I mean, I thought good girls didn’t get tattoos.  Boy, was I mistaken.  I mean, I’m a good girl, and so are my daughters, and yet……guess, who led the line with that experience?  It was definitely a freeing moment.  Back to my thoughts.  I thought good girls didn’t get body piercings.  Again, I was mistaken. I thought good girls didn’t speak out of turn, didn’t get involved in controversial topics, were always nice and polite, and the list goes on. Whew! Have I ever been mistaken. Apparently, I have not extended God’s fully imparted grace to myself for being a self proclaimed ‘good girl.’ I’ve realized I’m turning 50 in just 3 months, so I have begun to extend myself grace all the more—that grace that God had intended for me to have and accept all along—that grace that allows me to break the molds that I have placed myself into—that grace that allows me disagree with people and not feel guilty and to actually feel right.  I have to admit, I love that last one. J  Grace to sit around in the evenings, laying on a hammock, watching endless movies—all while the housework waits and the dinner is served late. Grace to, yes, get a tattoo with my daughters, to get a third ear piercing, to become controversially involved in politics and the pro-life debate, to speak against injustice and to actually confront. Yikes. Confront. Yep. Confrontation doesn’t have to always been a bad girl thing.

Wow! There’s a lot of freedom in grace. Especially when you’re a good girl, like me.  I’ll take it.  I hope you have not only accepted God’s freely given grace-card and that you are living in that freedom. If not, consider it. I’m sure you’ll be glad you did.

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