Scripture: 1 Peter 3:3-4
Do you remember how old you were when you started to care about being pretty? As little girls, it seems like the first insecurity we pick up revolves around our looks. Then we grow a little older and worry about our talents. Then our jobs. Then our husbands. Then our kids. Then our houses. Then our success. Overall, our worth.
We’re constantly asking ourselves if we’re good enough. From the time we were little girls until now, our culture has been feeding us messages of what womanhood is all about. We each took note of what sounded good to us. We internalized a running identity checklist. Oh, I’m supposed to be that skinny? Got it. Check. Oh, I’m supposed to have a successful career? Got it. Check. Oh, I’m supposed to get married when I’m young . . . older . . . never? Um, got it. Check. I think.
As we wonder whether we measure up, our big bad identity checklist is always growing. But what makes things even more complicated is that the rules are always changing. One year our culture strongly encourages us to get married by a certain age. Then five years later the age has changed! One year we are considered successful if we graduate with an undergrad degree. Then several years later we need a master’s degree to be deemed truly successful. One year culture says we should have babies younger. Then five years later we’re supposed to wait until we’re older—or skip having babies altogether.
The list is endless. When are we, as women, good enough? What does it take to become a “complete” woman? What is true femininity supposed to look like? What does it mean to be successful? How pretty is pretty enough? Are happiness and fulfillment a reality or only a dream?
Millions of women just like you, just like us, have been asking these questions for a long time. We’ve tried everything we know how to do, but it isn’t working. We’re not satisfied. We’re not happy. We’re not peaceful.
Is this all there is for women? Is what we see as good as it gets?
In short, absolutely not. No way. Our culture’s version of womanhood is a far cry from who God designed us to be. He has something radically better.
How would you define womanhood?