'Cause I'm just a girl
I'd rather not be
'Cause they won't let me drive
Late at night
Oh I'm just a girl
Guess I'm some kind of freak
'Cause they all sit and stare
With their eyes
Oh I'm just a girl
Take a good look at me
Just your typical prototype
Oh, I've had it up to here!
Gwen Stefani's ode to girls was a breath of fresh air back in 1995, expressing frustration over female stereotypes and resonating with girls everywhere.
More than twenty years later, the frustration over what it means to be a girl seems to continue. Despite advancements for women in all areas of life – whether in STEAM fields, corporate America or global politics – there is still confusion. Despite the sexual revolution and the women's liberation movement in the 1960s-70s, there is still perceived inequality among the genders.
What's going on? Why do women continue to be so unsatisfied that they're marching in Washington and all over the United States? What are they seeking to placate their anger, soothe their longings and fulfill their dreams?
I have a feeling that we're chasing the wrong dream.
The world tells us what it should mean to be a girl – and it's constantly changing according to the whims of culture, society and the media. It's hard to keep up, and it's caused a lot of damage. The Bible, however, gives us a true blueprint and definition of womanhood. Kristen Clark and Bethany Baird break down the differences in their new book, Girl Defined.
Clark and Baird, sisters who grew up in a Christian home with six siblings, are tall and blond and once had dreams to make it in the modeling industry. They quickly learned that this dream was not all they thought it would be. The reality of the expectations placed on them quickly shattered their glamorous ambitions and awakened them to their true identities in Christ.
In easy terms and with many personal anecdotes, Clark and Baird share their three pillars of counterfeit femininity: Liberation, Independence and Sexual Freedom. They counter these false pillars with the three pillars of biblical womanhood: She Helps Others, She Produces Life and She Nurtures Relationships.
Each point they make is backed up with Scripture and each chapter includes a study guide with questions for further reflection. What I appreciated most about their writing is that you can see these women's hearts for the Lord and for the girls and women they are addressing. They have struggled and had to face hard truths in their own lives, and they care deeply for others. Clark and Baird are not afraid to share their personal stories, such as facing unrealized dreams of motherhood and marriage on their own timelines.
This book is counterculture. Its ideas are counterculture because Jesus is counterculture. But He is the Truth. If we want to understand our womanhood, and what it means to be a girl in 2017, we need to go back to the beginning and understand why and how we were created. When we begin to understand God's design in creating us, we can begin to understand His purpose for us. It may not fit neatly in the world we live in, but how has that been working for us, anyway?
Check out Girl Defined and let me know what you think. Whether you agree or disagree, it will definitely give you something to think about. But it will take courage to drown out the noise of this world and what it tells you a girl should be and really listen to what God – our Creator and Perfecter – is telling us. I hope you have the guts to face His word so you can find your true identity in Him.