Monday, October 31, 2005

Captivating Chapter 3: Haunted by a Question

We've been worn down to the point that we don't believe we're part of a great adventure and we don't believe we're beautiful.

How do women, creatures who need to know they're beautiful, deal with the idea of not believing they're beautiful? They either strive to obtain beauty (think diets, surgery, hoochie clothes) or give up on it (or pretend they don't care).

We are aware that things aren't as they should be. We are more aware of our physical shortcomings than anyone--many of the things we perceive as shortcomings in ourselves, nobody else notices. Maybe they're not shortcomings at all--maybe they're just things the devil plants in our minds to cripple us.

Little boys and little girls both have important questions they need answered. For boys it's, "Do I have what it takes?" For girls it's, "Am I lovely?"

That's because boys were made in the image of God--as a warrior. Girls were made in the image of God's beauty.

Nearly all a man does is fueled by his search for a validation, that
longing he carries for an answer to his question.

Nearly all a woman does in her adult life is fueled by her longing to be
delighted in, her longing to be beautiful, to be irreplaceable, to have her
question answered, "Yes!" page 46

In the beginning we were all innocent and beautiful. We had nothing to be ashamed of. Then Eve was deceived in the garden. Adam became passive-- not only did he not stop Eve from eating the fruit, but he took some from her and ate. Where was his "warrior spirit" in that moment?

Adam's sin was passivity. Eve's sin was thinking she couldn't trust God-- that she needed to take matters into her own hands.

As a result, man was cursed with futility and failure. Woman was cursed
with loneliness, the need to control, and the dominance of men. Page

After the fall, women have come to hate our vulnerability. If we didn't, we wouldn't have the mindset of "I'll do anything a man can do or die trying!" It drives us crazy when things aren't under our control.

When a man goes bad, he either becomes passive and weak or violent and driven. Women become dominating and controlling or desolate and needy.

It is possible for a woman to be strong and feminine at the same time.

Desolate women are so desperate for love that they will accept whatever comes along. They hide their true selves. They're afraid to speak up for fear that someone won't like their opinion (or like them as a person or won't think they're captivating). They hide in order to remain safe and that is just another effort to control.

No matter whether we're desolate or dominating, something still isn't quite right. To ease the ache we may indulge (shopping, eating, fantasy, etc.) which can easily lead to addiction.

A woman's worst fear is abandonment. As I read that, I thought about how many women have had this nightmare come true. In a world of absentee dads (or distant dads) and divorces, of friends who aren't there when you need them, one act of abandonment can do a lot of damage. The fear was already there before it happened, but once it happens, it just gets worse. It's not just a "silly fear" anymore. It's a painful reality. Thank goodness God can heal all of our hurts!

When we were young, we knew nothing about Eve and what she did and how it
affected us all. We do not first bring our heart's question to God,
and too often, before we can, we are given answers in a very painful way.
We are wounded into believing horrid things about ourselves. And so every
woman comes into the world set up for terrible heartbreak. Page 59.

1 comment:

jasonandjennyt said...

Women's fear for abandonment is so real. I don't think I've ever shared this with you, but after my wedding, Jason and I had to drive back to Texas from Georgia. One of the stops we made along the way was for dinner at Cracker Barrel somewhere- I think we were in Alabama or Mississipi. After dinner I went to the restaurant's restroom without my purse (Jason had it). And, all of sudden, I began to fear...what happens if Jason just leaves me here in the middle of nowhere? like all of sudden, he realizes he made a mistake marrying me a weekend ago and just abandons me?! Weird, but I actually felt such strong fear that I rushed out of the restroom to make sure he was out there waiting for me. And, OF COURSE he was...I told him the thoughts I'd been having, and that was the first time I realized I had a serious issue/fear of abandonment....sort of like, "if people knew the real me, they're gonna leave me."