We live in a world that tells us all are equal, but why do I feel like I’m not good enough? Why do I feel worthless to a culture that has such low standards? Why is it that I’m told that I have to be stronger, have to work harder, have to know more to be valuable? Why is it that the culture is pushing this idea of a strong, capable woman with higher knowledge and power as if women aren’t already strong and capable? Why are women encouraged to be just like men in every respect?
Are women not good enough? Am I not enough as I am? Am I not valuable as I am?
Is this sexism I smell? Is this prejudice and discrimination against me because I was born female? Is this a culture of social inequality that’s telling me I need to have a job and an education to contribute to society? Because I know a hundred years ago, the culture wouldn’t pressure me to get three different degrees and have a job that pays a million dollars a year. The world a hundred years ago wouldn’t tell me that I had to be just like a man, that I need to be stronger and more powerful.
A hundred years ago, women were valued for women. For who they were, not what they could or should be. They were good enough.
In my generation, the female role models we have are ones who worked their behinds off to get into a man’s position before they were ever noticed or valued...and the ones who sold their bodies and lives to gain fame and fortune.
In my generation, the mothers we look up to are ones who have college degrees, jobs, and a steady paycheck.
In my generation, girls are told that being a woman sucks, that your period is annoying and painful, a reminder of the antiquated idea of—gag—childbearing. You aren’t worth your salt unless you’re working, making money, reaching goals. You can’t achieve anything or be successful or make a difference unless you’re just like a man. You have to alter every aspect of you who are to be valuable—your dreams, your religion, your skin color, your social status. You have to keep striving, keep working, keep running.
Women these days are treated like their body is good for nothing but passing around to whomever wants a moment of pleasure, that reproductive organs aren’t needed for anything but sex—who said anything about kids? Women aren’t respected; rather, they’re tossed around just like men. Women aren’t valued; instead, they’re twisted and warped to fit a specific mold.
But women were given periods and uteruses and eggs for a reason. Women were given emotions and sensibilities for a reason. Women were born a certain way—into a certain family and way of life, with a certain skin color and appearance, with a special purpose and destiny—for a reason.
Are you telling me that I was born wrong? That if I come just as I am, I’m not enough? That I can’t achieve anything on my own, with my God-given strength and wisdom? That I can’t make a difference or contribute by being kind, by showing respect to my elders and authorities, by spreading love and hope, by loving my husband and children?
Are you telling me that loving is wrong? That if I want to marry a man and show him my love and respect for him, I’m being weak? That if I want to have children and raise them to be kindhearted, God-fearing individuals who know their worth, I’m throwing my life away?
We have an entire day set aside just for the celebration of women as they were created to be—mothers. Eve was called the mother of all living, and was designed so that humankind could propagate. Our culture tells me that’s sexist, that Eve was just bending to the will of a man...but a wise person once said that the hand who rocks the cradle rules the world. Millions of wise people have said that their mother was everything to them; that she was the best person they knew; that she shaped them into better people; that she was the strongest and smartest woman even though she was 4’11, never had a job, and never graduated high school.
Am I saying that women are just child-baking ovens? No, I’m saying that creating and carrying and delivering a human life is the most amazing, awe-inspired, jaw-dropping thing I’ve ever heard of. That I know of no greater honor on this earth than to be able to bear a child.
Am I saying that women who do have jobs and educations aren’t women? No, I’m saying that a culture that tells them they have to have a career and an education to be a valuable member of society isn’t feminist and certainly isn’t pro-women.
Am I saying that women can’t dream beyond their circumstances and aspire to become something greater? No, I’m saying that those dreams shouldn’t define your worth; that you’re valuable even if you’re the poorest person on the planet and have the worst homelife ever; that you should have dreams not out of discontentment or pride but out of a desire to do good, walk in love, and further the Kingdom of God.
I’m simply saying that, despite what this world tells me, I am good enough. I’m beyond good enough, because I was created exactly as God wanted me to be—in His image. And God is the most loving, most sacrificial, most creative, most holy, most powerful, most strong, most amazing Being in the enter universe...and He made me to reflect all His attributes, to be loving as He is loving, sacrificial as He is, creative as He is, holy as He is, powerful as He is, strong as He is, amazing as He is.
I’m saying that I want to be a wife and mother, not because I think I “have to” or I’m being forced to, but because it’s so beautiful. Being a wife...loving a man and being loved by him in return, being his chosen one, his only one, living with him as his partner and lover and helpmate...is such a beautiful thing. To think, I can enrich his life, I can love him as God loves us, I can help him through his struggles, I can come alongside him in his endeavors, I can remind him of God’s blessings and grace. And being a mother? What can I say? My mind cannot even comprehend the fact that God can take the most painful parts of womanhood—menstrual cramps, back pain from carrying a ten-pound person inside you, hours upon hours of hard labor—and create life from them. Not just life, as a flower is alive, but another person, another soul, another reflection of His greatness.
My body is the house of Lord knows how many people, people who will change lives, work miracles, change the world. Whether you believe in God or not, I know you can agree that a woman’s body and the ability to have children is a wonderful thing. Just imagine if the mother of the doctor who saved your loved one’s life hadn’t had her baby, or if your best friend’s mother never had them, or if that person who made your day brighter had never been born.
Not only that, but God has given women a heart for children, for other people. Not just our own children, but other women’s as well. God has equipped us with the tenderness and the love and the patience (if you don’t think you have it, start asking God for it and walking in the fruit of the Spirit) needed to raise children, whether biological or adopted, and to touch the hearts of everyone we come in contact with.
It sounds like I have everything I need, that I can make a difference in people’s lives and in this world just by knowing my worth as a woman.
You, my sister, have everything you need. You have worth. You are valuable. You are good enough. You are worthy of respect and honor, just because you’re a woman. Isn’t that something? People often see other cultures’ treatment of women, whether that’s covering their head or holding the door open for them, as sexism or mistreatment...but it’s honor. It’s respect. It’s out of love for women and a desire to help them (not saying we’re helpless, but if we’re to help men, oughtn’t they help us? That’s equality, isn’t it?) that they treat them like that.
And even though our culture wants to scorn you—scorn us—and tell us we need to be different, “better,” in fact, I want to you know that you’re worthy of respect. You’re worthy of love. And you need to be told more often—I know you do—that you are enough, that you are good, and that you are beautiful. You’re strong and intelligent and important and full of purpose, just because you’re a woman, on top of every other aspect of yourself!
So whenever you think you’re the only woman who wants to be a wife and mother above being like a man, you’re not alone. I’ve wanted that all my life, not just because God has called me to it, but because it’s the most glorious calling I can personally imagine.
So whenever you need to be reminded of your worth, remember that God said His creation (that would be you, sister) was good; remember that God chose a girl (multiple women, actually, throughout the course of time) to bring His salvation into this world; and remember that God gave you an amazing destiny.
So whenever you want to curse your period or take birth control, remember that your period is there for a reason. Remember that your period is a symbol of your amazing capabilities—capabilities that men don’t have—and that God creates life within your body.
So whenever you want to give yourself up, lose your virginity, or sleep with someone who ain’t your husband (or forget it all and become a nun), remember that YOU ARE WORTH MORE. YOU ARE WORTH A LIFE AND DEATH COMMITMENT, WOMAN. You are worth the most beautiful and tender loving ever. You are worth respect and honor. You are worth a man who puts you above his own needs, who chooses you above every other woman, who waited just for you. You are worth a man who loves you more than life itself and would give you the world if he could. You are worth a man who would dedicate his entire earthly existence to you, who would vow to love you no matter what, to give you all his worldly goods, and to worship you with his body. You are loved by God Most High, and no man’s love can come close to that, so you wait until you find a man who loves you through Christ and with His love. Your virginity is a precious gift, so don’t “lose” it; give it to the man who stood before you and vowed before God and man to choose you and only you until the day he died. You’re worth that. Your virginity and your body is worth that.
So whenever someone—your parents, your friends, your teachers, somebody on social media or the news—tells you that being a woman isn’t good enough, that you’ve got to try for something bigger and better, you just smile to yourself and keep on doin’ your thing, girl, because you are good enough. You are valuable. You are a woman, for crying out loud, and that is a blessing from God. You are the one who was needed on this earth and created to fill that need, to make all God’s creation worth it. Don’t forget it. Don’t you dare forget it, sister.
God loves you, girl, and I love you too.