Tuesday, December 30, 2014

She Reads Truth, IF:Gathering, and women bible teachers. Part 2

This is part two of a four-part series. I'm examining the website, teachings, and women of "She Reads Truth" in 2 parts (What They Say, and What They Do). Part 3 will take a look at the conference known as the "IF:Gathering" in which many of the She Reads Truth women are involved. In part 4 I will discuss women teachers in general from a biblical perspective, and provide a list of solid teachers (men and women) of the Word.

This is part 2, looking at the teachers at She Reads Truth and their lifestyles, "What They Do," to see if how they live lines up with scripture. In Part 1 I looked at "What They Say", meaning, their teachings.

She Reads Truth, IF:Gathering, and women bible teachers. Part 1

She Reads Truth, IF:Gathering, and women bible teachers. Part 3

She Reads Truth, IF:Gathering, and women bible teachers. Part 4

In being a Berean, (Acts 17:11) which means examining the scriptures to see if what we are being taught is so, there is a second part to that examination to determine if a teacher is credible. If examining the scriptures is the "What They Say" part, then the second part is just as important to look at. It's looking at their lives, or, "What They Do."

In the verses speaking to qualifications for pastors, teachers and elders, there is only one that is of the gifts. "Able to teach." (2 Timothy 2:24). The rest are character qualifications, which speak to how the potential pastor, elder, or teacher lives his or her life. In addition, teachers should not be young, but be tested first. (1 Timothy 3:10-11).

In 1 Timothy 3:6 it is said that overseers (pastors) must not be new converts, lest they become puffed up with conceit and fall into the condemnation of the devil. This is practical advice and I would hold that it also applies to teachers, male and female.

So looking at the lives our teachers lead makes sense and is biblical. Do they live what they preach? Please excuse me for making this long. There are 6 women who write for the She Reads Truth (SRT) site. That's a lot of lives to examine. Please bear with me.




The women of She Reads Truth, "What They Do"

Raechel Myers is CEO and founder of She Reads Truth. She is 32 and married to Ryan, with whom she has 2 children. Myers states She Reads Truth's purpose, that Myers along "with an amazing team of writers, write in response to the scriptures we’re reading to create daily devotionals for the community to enjoy and discuss together."

So please bear in mind that these ladies are not writing what the scriptures mean, but are writing emotional and personal responses to them. What you are 'devoting' yourself to when you read their reading plans are their thoughts and emotions, not necessarily biblical truth. FYI.

Myers' bio is a fresh, American cornucopia of motherly mundanity. "Raechel is learning what a daily diet of the Bread of Life looks like in the “in between” – on laundry day, grocery day and Tuesday."

Sounds normal and mundane...except ... it's not. Raechel is "Crazy busy and super happy" as a sewist, writer, photographer, designer, author, CEO of a Limited Liability Company, Conference Fundraiser, Conference speaker, and world traveling Justice Activist. Oh, And mom. And wife.

From her website
As for her project regarding "Style for Justice" travel to Rwanda in July 2014, "We journeyed with an influential group of storytellers and introduced them to Rwandan women who have overcome injustice and have been empowered through economic opportunity."

Myers high-fiving over successful fabric selection
with Rwandan women to overcome injustice in Sub-Sahara Africa
She stated up front that the Rwanda journey wasn’t a mission trip, but a social justice trip. I wrote at length of the biblical and the unbiblical notions of social justice, here. Myers' is the unbiblical interpretation. Her trip, she said, had nothing to do with planting churches or handing out bibles, she wrote. It had everything to do with helping women in Africa sell jewelry. (Myers: The second half of this trip is taking a very “Project Runway” turn and I think it’s sort of awesome and redemptive and exciting!) That's why she was leaving her children and her husband to travel halfway around the world? Let me find that in my bible.

If you ask God for justice, you are asking for hell. Ask for mercy. ~Steven J. Lawson

In an Instagram photo Raechel Myers published of her two young children perched on a chair and on a table watching a laptop playing a video of their mother being interviewed at If:Gathering, with this caption, My husband just texted me this photo of the kids watching our @shereadstruth interview at the @ifgathering. Seeing my baby girl perched on the table watching her mommy talk about her Jesus- so blessed!!!!

She has a choice, let her children watch her talk about Jesus through a laptop, or let her children watch her at home living the obedient life Jesus called her to live.

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Amanda Bible Williams is 36-year-old Editorial Director for She Reads Truth. She lives in TN in a farmhouse near Nashville and is married to husband David. I believe Mr Williams runs a Chick-Fil-A. Williams says she is a work-at-home mom to three small children. In addition, she is a blogger, writer, magazine contributor, Editorial Director, Co-CEO of a Limited Liability Company, and Graduate Student (Religious Studies). Oh, and a mom, And a wife.

She considers herself an Enneagram #9, which tells us she does not have discernment. Enneagram is an occultic practice stemming from Hinduism, and is another of the pagan practices Christianity has syncretistically adopted from pagan religions. Nancy Leigh DeMoss of Reviving Our Hearts explains the occult background of Enneagram.

Mrs Williams also is a Grad Student at Vanderbilt University, working toward attaining a MS in Religion. Most colleges, certainly, and many seminaries, have become anything ranging from liberal-to-secular. Women need to take care when submitting to religious instructors because of our proclivity toward being seduced away from the solid doctrines of Jesus. (2 Tim 3:6, 2 Cor 11:3, 1 Tim 2:14). Mrs Williams has already demonstrated an undiscerning interest in the practice of Enneagram, and whatever discernment she may still retain will no doubt soon be lost under the secular, Christ-hating agenda that Vanderbilt pushes. According to Al Mohler, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary President,
Just a few decades after its founding, Vanderbilt had transformed itself into a secular university, embarrassed by its Christian founding. ... In more recent months, Vanderbilt’s administration decided to push secularism to the extreme — launching a virtual vendetta against religious organizations on campus.
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Diana Stone (age 30), is married with a child. Her husband is in the United States Army. In addition to her writing on She Reads Truth, you can also find her work on her own blog Diana Wrote, and at Babble.com, Babble Parenting, Still Standing Magazine, The New York Times, and The Huffington Post. Smaller glimpses into her day are on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and on Pinterest. Mrs Stone is busy. Nevertheless, we read that "You can find her in the mornings with a cup of coffee and her Bible flung open, preparing for the day ahead." Awww, admirable! "With a sweet daughter in tow, Diana clings to God’s Word daily." Wow, inspiring.

Is that the truth? Really? Er, only partly.

Mrs Stone relaxes with the bible "flung open" ... after she drops her daughter to daycare.

For the past two and a half years, the couple employed a part time nanny care for their daughter in their home so Mrs Stone could work as a freelance writer. After bumping along with several nannies, they eventually decided to put their child in daycare so Mrs Stone could continue to write at home.

And countless are the mothers who ignore, neglect, or abandon their children in pursuit of self-centered "fulfillment"--motherhood is an inconvenient interruption to their lifestyle.~JMacArthur
As a mother and a working mom, Mrs Stone is not sure where her priority should be. In her own words, at the journal Liberating Working Moms, Stone wrote about making the switch from nanny to daycare.
"There’s a constant tug on me to be in both worlds 100%. Work should come first. Life should come first. What is a priority? Who gets my time that day – and is choosing one over the other wrong? When I’ve committed to being a mama and being paid to write, both need my top priority."
First of all, there should be no distinction between "life" and "work." Colossians 3:23 says "Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men,"

Secondly, Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. (Psalm 127:3)

Mrs Stone's mothering gets in the way of writing about being a mom, so the mothering is outsourced. Let me find that in my bible.

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Hayley Morgan, is approximately 28, married, with 4 kids. I haven't found a name for her husband, nor a job description. Mother to 4 boys. Mrs Morgan co-founded The Influence Network and organizes the annual Influence Conference (complete with the blatantly unChristian classes in, "there's no such thing as Holy Yoga") held in Indianapolis every fall. She is author of a book to help you with the daily question of “What do I wear?!” "The wisdom in the book has helped hundreds of women get dressed with more confidence and less fuss." She blogs, writes at SRT, speaks at Influence Conference and is Editor-In-Chief of the Influence Magazine. Oh, and a mom. And a wife.

The Influence Network and its attendant magazine have nebulous mission statements, other than for women to "make their online life mean something". The Magazine's mission statement reads,
"This Magazine is the physical embodiment of what I'd imagine a woman of influence being. It's bright and vibrant, it's stylish and smart, it has a lot to say about a lot of things. It has a lot of white space and margin. It's also going to grow in front of you, equal parts wobbly and beautiful. We're going to try new things and we're going to push a lot of doors wide open..."

Turning biblical womanhood in its head
in pursuit of barely cloaked self-fulfillment
For a woman who communicates for a living Mrs Morgan is very good at hiding the meaning in her intent and mission. That was about as clear as, "Let's leverage our core competencies so we can think out of the box while the paradigm shifts during our journey."

As for the mission statement, her declaration of the magazine's purpose contained lots of buzz words that mean nothing and isn't clear. Except for the overall tone ... that was very clear. It was unbiblical. I invite you to read the session topic synopses at the Influence Network (and a biblical definition of influence is never given, though it purports to be a Christian conference). At this "Christian" conference you will learn to throw out the "shoulds" and "not live by the rules", to be "intentionally leaning in to what might feel imperfect", to "use God’s gift of work to transform the lives of the poor," and "how to use life’s valleys to build momentum for your journey." Because, it's all about us. Being disobedient.

Yet the woman lauded in the bible are humble mothers, wives, widows, honest and submissive, not having a lot to say and not being pushy with doors. (1 Timothy 2:11)

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Rebecca Faires, married, four children, lives in TN. Sister of SRT CEO Raechel Myers. "Loves the idea of international justice" and for that reason tries "not to be an oppressor at home."

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Debbie Eaton, wife for 27 years, mom to teenage son. Worked at Rick Warren's Saddleback church as woman ministry leader, which should say all there is to say about her discernment level. On Twitter Mrs Eaton describes herself as "Christ Follower, Wife, Mom, Women's Ministry Leader, grateful for life and the influence we have to one another."

With these women it is all about influence. Yet Jesus calls us to service in humility. He who has the most influence of any person ever born or who will be born, humbled Himself to the point of the cross, and commands us to be the same. (Philippians 2:3)

The overall tone of these women's lives is to be influential in the world, leading corporations, being the generation to solve injustice and poverty, living strong and bold (and stylish and trendy).

Do the women of She Reads Truth and the Influence Conferences seem like a Titus kind of woman to you? Titus 2:3-5 says,

Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled. (Titus 2:3-5)

Sisters, the women of She Reads Truth and their friends (Shauna Niequist, daughter of Bill Hybels of Willow Creek Church), Ann Voskamp, Christine Caine and etc, are not living a life submitted to the word. In Part 1 I mentioned a good article at The Gospel Coalition titled "Is Your Church Functionally Liberal?" in which the author says there are doctrinal statements, and then there is how the church lives it out. Many churches have a conservative doctrinal statement but are in fact "functionally liberal." I apply the same concept to individual lives. Anyone can set up a blog, publish a faith statement, but is what they DO matching with what they say? Or are they doctrinally conservative but functionally liberal?

This matters, because the bible consistently curses the succeeding generations of idolaters. God does so many times in the OT and in the NT. Jesus tells the Pharisees they were making sons of hell twice as bad as they were. He curses the church at Thyatira, saying that their tolerance of the false prophetess 'Jezebel' made spiritual daughters who needed either to repent or He was going to kill them. Sin always gets worse from one generation to the next unless it is corrected through repentance.

Comparing the Titus verses with today's spiritual mentors to these young women, the older women failed to teach the younger to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, because they weren't. Beth Moore (age 57) began this erm, "journey", into Christian feminism with her lifestyle. She speaks a good doctrine, but she does not live it. Other spiritual daughters coming up quickly noted the tolerance evangelical Christianity had for Moore's calling-all-the-shots, CEO leadership, wide-traveling, park the kids with hubby, look at me celebrity, bring in the bacon kind of lifestyle. Tolerated ... as long she gave a wink and a nod to the party line of certain doctrines and cloaked the lifestyle feminism in words like giftings for corporate talent and ministry rather than work or career.

The next generation of these Christian feminists were such as Christine Caine (age 48) who leapt onto the liberation mantra of 'stepping into giftings' and went global with boldness and joy. The third generation is this crop of twenty and early thirty something women mentioned here on this blog, are even more bold about their feminist lifestyle, actually thinking they are unleashing it all and pushing open closed doors for the benefit of the world, and have learned how to use technology to their severe advantage. More on this technological savvy in part 3, where I also explain further why I am being so hard on women who promote this lifestyle

The women at She Reads Truth do not have discernment enough to teach, do not know what it is to live out lives as Christian women. They do not have the wherewithal to teach you anything close to what Jesus would have for His women to know.

And yes if you detect a tone in which I am upset, I am. I am offended by Christian feminists who re-define the biblical word for "gifts" and "ministry" just so they can live lives as usurpers, who promote a different Gospel, ("our story is the Good News"), commercially trade on their motherhood while stowing the kids at daycare or leaving them and husband behind while they travel for unbiblical but worldly reasons, yes I am offended. I'm offended by Christian feminists presenting a disingenuous bio while teaching wrongly interpreted doctrines and disobeying the doctrines that are there, and who are poor role models for younger generations. When those two toddlers grow up watching Raechel Myers be a mom through the laptop, what will they have been taught by their mother's and their father's lifestyle?

One of the women wrote that she was reading Charles Spurgeon, Myers I think it was. These women who thirst for influence and boldness and a place in the world, fail to see the greatest gift of all. Spurgeon had a mother. She bore 17 children. Nine of them died. Phil Johnson wrote in his essay "How Childhood influences shaped a great preacher",
Spurgeon's mother was the one whose influence first awakened him to the claims of Christ on his life. Her exhortations to her children, as well as her prayers on their behalf, made an indelible impact on Charles as a young boy.
Does Mrs Myers think for one moment that she would even be reading works by Spurgeon if his mom had been consumed with personal glory influence and trotted off to Africa to help natives pick out scarves instead of grieving her nine lost children and raising the eight others? Praying, living, worshiping, doing laundry, and gasp, submitting to the womanly life Jesus commands? Mrs Eliza Spurgeon's influence lasts to this day and Myers is a beneficiary of it. What will Myers' influence and legacy be for her children? Will they have a biblical worldview?

Do any of these women live a life that is starkly different from any other woman of the world? (1 Peter 2:9).

Feminist Gloria Steinem & activist
Dorothy Pitman Hughes on civil rights and social justice.
"What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done,
and there is nothing new under the sun." Ecclesiastes 1:9
I am offended by women who say all the previous generations got it wrong and now, finally now that WE are here, we will unleash proper womanhood onto the world. I am offended by all of that. None of it honors Jesus.

It's up to you, my young Sisters, to decide what kind of mother/woman you want to be. Influential according to the world, unleashed, living out loud? Or Godly. Because you cannot be both. (Luke 16:13)
For better or worse, mothers are the makers of men; they are the architects of the next generation. That's why the goal of becoming a godly mother is the highest and most noble pursuit of womanhood. ~John MacArthur
Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. (1 John 2:15)

She Reads Truth, IF:Gathering, and women bible teachers. Part 1

She Reads Truth, IF:Gathering, and women bible teachers. Part 3

She Reads Truth, IF:Gathering, and women bible teachers. Part 4

----------------------------

Further reading


Six months after the conclusion of this series, Lighthouse Trails researched the IF:Gathering also. Please read their extensive research here


Interview with JD Greear about new 7-week study: Jesus-centered Parenting in a Child-centered World

LifeWay resource: Ready to Launch: Jesus-Centered Parenting in a Child-Centered World

Profile of a Godly Mother

What does the Bible say about Christian Mothers?

The Secret Christian Feminists

Motherhood Is a Calling (And Where Your Children Rank)

A Biblical Theology of Motherhood




18 comments :

  1. I had never heard of this group or their devotions until yesterday's post on this blog. But I thank you nonetheless for reviewing them, as there are probably many young women out there who have heard of them. I made it a practice several years ago to avoid anything that was popular or "celebra-christian.". That would be my advice to other readers of this blog.
    As a 36 year old, stay at home mother of 2, I cannot tell you how often I rub against this post-modern expectation for womanhood. It is sad and disgusting to me that it has thoroughly saturated the evangelical world, and we are now telling our girls and women what the world dictates women should be. Up is down, and down is up and right is wrong and wrong is right.
    So, as a lifelong stay at home mom, I am used to being tennis shoes in the dryer with everyone around me, and having even other Christians puzzled with me that I don't work outside the home or see myself doing so when my kids are grown. "What do you do all day?" they ask. It is bewildering how our society has forgotten the essential role of wife/mother and how much work it is. I am happy to do it, and I am also blessed now that my kids are in their teen years to have many hours in the day to devote to study of His Word!
    ~Jennifer

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    Replies
    1. Thank you for your honorable service tot he kingdom as a mom!!

      Thanks for your good comment. I had not heard of them either till a friend with 5 kids asked me to review them. Their influence is huge and their techno-savvy is not to be taken lightly. These are women who grew up entirely in the digital age.

      For example- Their conference called the IF:Gathering, sold out in 42 minutes. It was ONLY marketed online. These women are the 3rd generation of women from the seminal generation of Beth Moore, who have seen the women they admire drift further from a life that has a biblical worldview and an honest submission. And it is impacting Christianity in serious ways.

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    2. In response to "what do you do all day?" you can say, without being misleading of course,

      that you're an
      Economist
      Household Administrator
      in Property Management
      Home Equity Overseer

      and of course Child Care Provider, Educator, Private Professional etc.

      But the tongue in cheek with the first four is that the word from which Economy derives is the Greek word "oikonomia," (that's the feminine form of it) and it means the management of a household, or administration of a household, etc. Managing one's affairs.

      It might be a fun Bible word-study to use the Biblehub website to look up the places where it's used in the NT. It would undoubtedly be encouraging, as it emphasizes that the role of mother is an important one, by association. Not "just staying at home" or anything like it.

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  2. Oh, my, Elizabeth. This is all so informative and I appreciated the encouragement at the end.
    Melissa (wife to David, 6 kids, CEO of nothing)

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  3. Melissa: "CEO of nothing" ~ LOL!! Can relate!!

    And yet, why is it when we read about these DO-IT-ALL, HAVE-IT-ALL ladies.... I come up feeling short?? Like I can't possibly hold a candle!!
    Have to remind myself ~ in the end, all their "work", all their "social justice" is going to be for naught if they do not know the Lord, more importantly if the Lord does not know them!! (Matt 5)

    And too..... I have to remind myself of Mary-Martha -- Martha was the one clanging the pots & pans, making dinner, not doing anything "bad".... but was just OVERLY BUSY just being busy.... and then got whiney telling Jesus to order Mary to come & help!! {been there....}
    Wouldn't we all love to have seen Martha's face when instead (big surprise!) she was rebuked by our Lord & Mary was given honor as the one who desired the good thing.

    Listen, we never had kids (3 miscarriages... so ours will be in heaven).... yet I am a stay at home "wife" ... by desire!! Fortunately I do not have to help bring home the bacon.... would if I had to, but since I don't have to, I actually ENJOY being a homemaker!! And most days I'm left to wonder how women can possibly do both.
    Something Hillary Clinton & even Sarah Palin would utterly despise (in case you all do not remember, Sarah also poo-poo'd those who stay home to take care of the husbands, family, house....). Oh yes, Jennifer, "WHAT DO YOU DO ALL DAY??" And do you get the chronic requests to babysit, take care of dogs, run errands, etc...... only because you "do NOT WORK"?? Is that mind-set a gigantic pet peeve for other ladies as it for me?? My MIL, honest abe, once asked me if I sat at home all day & watched TV with the dog!!!! Reva ROLLS EYES majorly!!!!! Good thing I have a sense of humor.... otherwise, would GRRRR.....be very tempted to get catty & say/think some very unchristian responses!!....

    Never mind that women of other generations stayed home & took care of the house.... but we are NOT SUPPOSED TO!!! {according to them; according to society}

    From Titus 2:4,5 that they admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, 5 to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be blasphemed.

    Elizabeth quote: I am offended by women who say all the previous generations got it wrong and now, finally now that WE are here, we will unleash proper womanhood onto the world. I am offended by all of that. None of it honors Jesus. /end

    Soooo very true!!!! Wow, none of us could have said it better.

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  4. 1. The cryptic phrase "leaning in" in the description of one of their conferences above wouldn't make much sense if it weren't for the book published just last year, "Lean In," by Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg. It's basically a "climbing the corporate ladder for women" self help book and I think it's been widely consumed among female academics and yuppies (in other words, people with ambitions outside of domesticity).

    In case you weren't aware of the book, I think you might appreciate the connection. I'm almost certain that odd phrase above was influenced by an acceptance of everything in said book.

    2. On my blog, I'm about 1/5 of the way through an endeavor to elaborate on 1000 independent thoughts about romance, marriage, being a husband, the wedding, what I look for in a wife, etc. ('AWPATT' - A Woman Provokes A Thousand Thoughts). And in the section to be posted mid-January, I'm posting an A-Z list (inspired in part by the acrostic in Proverbs 31) of "I want a woman who is ___" statements.

    This whole article is perfect as an illustration of part H (the first few sentences copied here):

    "I want a woman who is humble. She needs to know the difference between passion, and ambition for its own sake. The latter begs the question as to why it should be pursued. A woman whose dream it is to have a prominent, “successful” career is not a woman who is preparing herself for marriage. " [more to come Jan 16]

    And with your in-depth expose of these mothers' priorities, you've given a lot of concrete support for my suspicion/aversion to women who seem obsessed with a superhero trajectory to their career. I know a very soundly Biblical reformed friend from college, who is pretty impressive in her academic accomplishments, and is taking a 2-year period of work in exchange for financial aid from the same place that she was interning at. But her desire is to be married and be a mom. She's working hard now, to be faithful and redeem the time, and also because she can't make any assumptions about when a godly man will pursue her, but her end goal is not to be the #1 such-and-such in the country. She's just being dutiful to God in one area of her life before marriage, and willing to change her personal behavior completely in pursuit of motherhood afterwards.

    There's something wrong with a "Christian" woman who is ambitious professionally, *and* married. It's not that ambition is wrong, but ambition at the expense of your family is. Either remain unmarried and pursue your dreams, or marry and pursue your children's welfare. These women are glory-hogs who simply don't care about their children or husbands--or God--as much as they do their own name.

    Life is a series of choices. Do you want to raise children, or do you want to *outsource* (as you said) your responsibilities as a parent in order to pursue *what you -really- want to do*? Marriage isn't for every woman. And I know to evaluate a woman as wife and mother material based on their priorities for their careers and hobbies prior to said marriage.

    There's a lot of self-absorption in this world. Really obedient daughters of God in my age group must be one in a thousand. In summary, thanks for the exhaustive analysis you provided.

    ~ 'Hakam'

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    1. Hakam thanks for the connection to leaning in. Makes perfect sense now.

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    2. Brother Hakam,

      Kindly, from an older, happily, and long-married (to a wonderful, godly man) sister in Christ... I've taken a gander at your "AWPATT". I've struggled with how to say this gently, but dear brother, that list alone is enough to scare off 99.44% of godly Christian ladies out there. I am afraid that if any eligible young ladies met you and then came across your blog, they'd be terrified that they'd never be able to meet your criteria!

      Example, point 50-52, my husband and I are not even remotely matched in height, and that has not affected our marriage one whit. If he had even considered that as important (which it is not), we'd never have married.

      I won't even address #46 and similar ones, and the reality of what happens to a woman's body with age (even if she is physically fit in her 20s... and of course a devastating accident or serious illness can end that pursuit quickly, dear brother), let alone how a woman's body changes after child bearing...

      My husband had no list, he just loves me. Time has only deepened our love, for as the outward man fails (and fail it will, in many and every way), the only thing that has increased in both of us is Christlikeness. Hence why Scripture often admonishes us to grow in godliness, it is the one thing that never fades nor fails.

      Ephesians 5, and the pastoral epistles, have been sufficient to guide him in our marriage.

      I shall say no more... Prov 10:19

      -Carolyn

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    3. I'm sorry if you saw it as mainly a qualification list, e.g. 'agree with every single point here or you're out' :P. Definitely not the intention. I can understand the concern about having too many specific ideas about what you expect, but from my own experience and anecdotal observation of others, I'm firmly persuaded that a bare minimum interpersonal engagement prior to marriage will not work for me. I'm far too analytical -- many of the thoughts I've posted are simply elaborations on very innocuous or subliminal thoughts and feelings, not at all a list of criteria that a hypothetical wife must check off. Let me reassure you of that.

      Without meaning any disrespect to you at all, your second to last paragraph's opening line bothers me in the same way that it bothers me when people say that they don't try to understand the Bible, and that it doesn't matter how God created or how the world will end or how sinners get forgiven, all that matters is to "have faith." If we're to study the Scriptures, to know God, it makes all the sense in the world for me to study my future spouse, and she me, to know each other better. It can only deepen our love for each other. A relationship with someone who doesn't want to grow in our love for one another through connecting intellectually would be nightmarish to say the least. And I definitely don't expect that this characterizes your relationship with your husband--your emphasis on Scriptural preeminence and Christlikeness defy that notion--it was merely your speech that set off alarm bells. I'm not posting, therefore, to argue, but to offer a nuanced perspective.

      I appreciate your emphasis on Christ and Scripture as the most important and central aspects of a good relationship, and I totally agree. Thanks for that encouragement. I simply need, for reasons of my flavor of intellect, to flesh things out in much greater detail for satisfaction and security. And as I intend to point out in the next upload, I only really need this message to be well received by that one lady who has the same needs; they aren't blanket judgments or expectations of all women, only offered for 'food for thought' for other introspective singles, mainly. I'm trying to build up people, not walls. :) Please excuse me for any worry my very open personality may have caused you.

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    4. Brother Hakam,

      I appreciate your response, and your attempt to clarify yourself. I do understand your desire to address matters such as marriage and theology with thoroughness, which is commendable.

      However, if I may, two comments.

      First, the extent to which you reveal your inner thoughts in such a public forum (ie, online) is unwise, for a variety of reasons.

      Second, in light of the context of my above comment, my statement "he just loves me" should not have set off a single alarm bell. Zeal for the truth is good. Striving about words is not.

      Take care that in your desire to be nuanced and flesh things out in great deal to your satisfaction, that you do not come across as pedantic.

      -Carolyn

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  5. Off topic I know but I thought you'd be interested, homosexuality is being put into cartoons :

    Gay kiss "edited" from Cartoon Network

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2811728/Cartoon-Network-backs-showing-onscreen-gay-kiss.html

    Though I haven't seen any news articles in another episode it implied that a boy had two mothers, having them shown multiple times on screen

    Co creators confirm Korra and Asami relationship
    http://www.vanityfair.com/vf-hollywood/2014/12/legend-of-korra-creators-confirm-korrasami-is-canon

    The show was pulled off Nick, the creators moving it online earlier this year

    "We did it for all our queer friends, family, and colleagues. It is long over due that our media (including children’s media) stops treating non-heterosexual people as nonexistent, or as something merely to be mocked. I’m only sorry it took us so long to have this kind of representation in one of our stories."-Bryan Konietzko

    Creator confirms two female characters have dated
    http://www.buzzfeed.com/skarlan/adventure-time-actor-confirms-princess-bubblegum-and-marceli#.ok3Mr0J0K

    "And I said, ‘Are they going to do it on the show at all, or can we say anything about it in the book?” And he’s like, ‘I don’t know about the book, but in some countries where the show airs, it’s sort of illegal.’ So that’s why they’re not putting it in the show."

    In a couple of years I'd imagine creators everywhere no longer being afraid.

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  6. Ladies and Hakam, about the doing-it-all, having-it-all attitude, Erin Benziger mentioned Angie Smith on her blog, Do Not Be Surprised. I'd wanted to publish some things about Angie, since she is a frequent contributor to She Reads Truth, but I just didn't have space. Smith is really a 7th She Reads Truther, IMHO. The comment regards the fallacy that women can have it all, and look good while they do it, too.

    http://www.donotbesurprised.com/2013/08/this-n-that_23.html

    'Women ministry leaders' Priscilla Shirer and Angie Smith confess that they are under a lot of pressure to not admit that they're exhausted. Well, I suppose it is exhausting to be living in disobedience to God's Word and His ordained roles for men and women."

    Ms Benziger was referring to an article from Christian Post she'd linked to that interviewed the two women. In reading that article, it strikes me as similar in nature to the discussions Gloria Steinem sparked after the Second Wave feminists began to droop from the pressure of balancing career and home.
    http://www.christianpost.com/news/women-ministry-leaders-confess-a-lot-of-pressure-to-not-admit-im-exhausted-102514/cpt

    It's the same feminist fallacy, except for "Christian" feminists, they are discovering the same thing that the Secular Feminists discovered by 1988, that stepping into leadership, ministry, or gifts, whatever you call it, IS exhausting. No, we can't do it all. And that is be design, God designed his family structure and His church structure to be complementary, not egalitarian.

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  7. Dear Elizabeth I found your blog months ago and I read it regularly. Thank you for this article, I live in the UK and before coming across this site I thought I was in the right path in trying to know Jesus more, grow closer to Him, only to realise that I was dwelling among many false teachers. The Holy Spirit has opened my eyes to the real truth which is in the Word alone. I love Jesus with my whole heart and His grace towards a sinner like me humbles me. For years I have felt I didn't have a "calling" felt inadequate whenever I heard Caine, Bobbie Houston and many others like them preaching about stepping into your "calling". I was part of a church that is steeped in talks about social justice, "calling", etc and that now walks hand in hand with Ecumenism, Rick Warren, Caine, the Houston's and the lot.
    But when my daughter was born I decided to leave work as it didn't make any sense to me to work to pay someone else to look after my baby, as financially I didn't have to. Thank you for the encouragement that my decision of being a staying at home mum looking after of my 2 children and my husband is a biblical one! Between washing up, making meals, doing the groceries etc my hearts desire is to know Jesus and be an example to my children.
    Thank you sister for your encouragement! God keep blessing you abundantly x

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    1. Dear SIster in CHrist,

      I'm overflowing with gratitude for your testimony! It is the greatest comfort for me to know any sister was even one iota refreshed by anything on this blog. Jesus honors your biblical choice, for sure, it's what He ordained and sisters who submit to it are earth's greatest blessing.

      Where would we be without mothers??? I know for other women the choices are harder due to, military deployment, widowhood, absent fathers, or simply severe economic downturn, all narrowing the choices. But overall, the Lord blesses men and women who submit. The unit you're a part of is the foundation of society, and it's a beautiful thing.

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  8. i'm hesitant to post here because i certainly know how these things can be misunderstood and taken out of context, but after reading this and clicking over to the article that quotes me at a women of faith event (a friend forwarded these to me-i honestly had no idea they existed), i really wanted to reach out and connect with you. i re-read my comments to see if they were offensive or unbiblical in any way, and i'm struggling to see exactly how me saying i was busy or that i struggled with fear (both true, and true for all of my friends, regardless of their ministries-just more of a common struggle) led to these criticisms. i'm the first one in line for discussion, and GENUINELY welcome a kind and appropriate rebuke. i am truly sickened at the thought that anything i have done/am doing/will do could grieve the heart of God. with that said, i'm not interested in stirring any kind of pot, but i would love to see the atmosphere of these conversations change, and for there to be a productive, God-honoring dialogue that would help all of us. i mean that sincerely! i imagine you might be quite surprised to know my beliefs, but as i was never asked directly, i haven't been able to speak to them. please hear my heart-i love the body of Christ and the women i share it with. my ultimate goal is to serve the Lord well, and if you would like to contact me personally, please know that i am more than willing to have that conversation.

    with love,
    angie

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  9. I love your blog I'm a new supporter I prayed for more dicernment in my life and then I found all theses blogs on sound doctrine I have unfollowed a lot of women preachers Anne voskamp, Shauna neiquist and proverbs 31 ministries.

    I think as long as we keep speaking the truth in love like the bible states if they take offense and say no love was shown etc we can rest in the knowledge that God seees all things and love was shown in the midst of warning women and exposing false teachers.

    Keep up the good women I love your heart in wanting to ensure that our spiritual lives stay healthy, that we keep abiding in the vine, and that we be discerning women of God who put God first.
    I also love that you are a women after Gods own heart you inspire me to keep chasing after God.

    Lots of love

    Becca :-)

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    1. Thank you so much Becca!! I had a low day and your kind encouragement lifted me right back up! Thank you for taking the time :)

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