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Monday, January 20, 2014

Captivating Women

Going through some old documents, I found something that you, my readers, will find inspiring. Today I would like to share a book review I wrote in college.
Captivating, written by John and Stasi Eldredge in 2005, has been an inspiration to women around the world. In the book, the authors discuss a variety of issues women face through the course of their lives, bringing to light how these issues have drug us down and made us feel devalued. They have brought us away from how God originally created women to be … captivating. For example, a little girl twirling in a poufy skirt is showing the world she can be captivating and wishes for her father, who is sitting in his favorite chair, to notice her. Through this small action, she feels lovely and wants her father to notice her. But does he? Women often ask others if they are worthy of love and truly beautiful, whether with words or actions. Sometimes these answers are yes. Other times they are no, and the girl in the example is left disappointed and possibly scarred, thinking that she is not worthy.
In the chapter “What Eve Alone Can Tell,” it mentions that by looking at the story of creation, women can understand how they are supposed to be. As segments of Genesis chapters one and two are dissected for us by the authors, we see the progression of creation. From the beginning of the book, I was enchanted at the truths the authors were revealing. According to the feminist movement, women are not some fragile, kitchen-dwelling creature, they are equal with men. Although a woman can hold any position a man can, there is something the creation story reveals that shows why woman is called the "weaker vessel". Adam was created n the wilds, not the softness and beauty of the garden. 
Within every man is a desire for "roughing it," as well as leading and providing for his family. Adam was a man's man. He gathered and provided, he was given the daunting task of naming all the animals. Eve was blessed to be created within the garden where she never had to gather and provide. She just had to walk up to the nearest tree and eat the fruit. God wanted Adam to keep her safe and protected to fulfill his roles as a man.Women are not supposed to carry the weight of responsibility that men do. The Bible is very clear on the roles of men and women. Man is the head of the house, in which he will face consequences if he leads his family astray. Women are supposed to be caretakers, but not simple housewives that are only supposed to cook, clean, and have babies. That role isn't for everyone. For a further example of women's roles, see Proverbs 31.

So women were created to be emotional, soft, and strong? Yes, they are! Women are actually created to be the most delicate, beautiful, and captivating part of creation. If one were to look at the elevation of intricacy within creation, one would discover that as time goes on, the creature becomes more intricate, more beautiful, and at the pinnacle of it all was woman. All my life I had been put down by other people, both male and female. As a result I had acquired the idea that I am ugly, unaccepted, and worthless, but when I began reading this book I started seeing myself in a different light. Could I really be beautiful, loved, and pricelessAt first I couldn't grasp these ideas, but as the book went on I began to see myself differently. I was noticing all the scars life had given meStill there was something that still ached inside of me. I wanted to know that I am beautiful. To heal that ache I would have to look at the oldest story known: the story of creation. 
The scene begins with the Holy Spirit hovering over the waters in darkness. According to the Bible, the earth was without form. It was the perfect blank canvas, a new lump of clay waiting to be molded. It was the breathless moment before the first line of a play is presented. Then God spoke and created light. Next he made land, a great divide to separate the waters, and he brought the water into one place. The first brush strokes have been made. God next adds detail, designs, and color. Grass, flowers, plants, and trees appear in every direction. God then creates the heavens. Numerous stars began to appear in the void above, and so did the sun and the moon. 
Next are the animals both small and large – land, sea, and air alike. In everything, creation is ascending in its beauty and complexity. It seems like God is becoming more creative as he goes along. Each creature is more intricate than the one before it. All led up to the moment where God places his own image on earth. God created man. Still something was missing. God couldn't fit all his personality into one human being. There had to be a balance to man’s rough and rugged nature. There needed to be woman. 
Imagine the first time Adam saw Eve. I could imagine it resembling the painting of the birth of Venus. Eve’s hair gently caressing her soft skin as all nature stops to watch her. She is the most beautiful of all God’s creation. Eve is the pinnacle of God’s masterpiece, the one thing that completes the world. She holds the loving heart of God in her chest.
As the book continues, it speaks about God being harsh and loving, rugged and delicate at the same time. God’s heart is so big that he had to divide these emotions and needs into two different human beingsThe emotions and needs of the genders are separated so that, when brought together, they complete each other. An example of this is how a husband and wife are said to balance each other. Women were created as the more delicate vessel, and the Bible states that it is the man’s job to protect woman. Think about the games kids play. The boys are tackling each other, or fighting with stick-swords to show they are worthy of whatever they are fighting for, while girls are playing princess or some other game that involves them being rescued. They want a knight in shining armor to rescue them from their predicament, whether it is a dragon or, as women grow up, their own broken heart. 
There is a purpose for everything God creates. As Psalms states God knew us from the time we were in our mother’s womb. He created us with a purpose. He created us with needs and wants, as well as the need and desire to be loved. God made woman to be loving, compassionate, emotional, and beautiful. He saved woman for last so she could be the final touch of creation. Without her, creation isn't complete. Eve was God’s piece de resistance. She was the last brushstroke that completed God’s work of artShe saw everything it its entirety, because after her creation God saw that it was good, and he rested.

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