Monday, January 2, 2012

Thoughts on Biblical Feminity - Pt. 3


This post is the third in a series. The first one was very foundational, so please read that one. And if you'd like to read the second, I won't complain.

I'm going to wrap up my posts on this theme with this third post, at least for now.

This is really an open-ended series. It can't end. It's an exploration of different ways to please our King. He is infinite. There's always more to be learned.

But I'm finite, so this is the last post in this particular series. :-D

A godly woman whom I would like to spend my life with:
  1. Is about her Father's business and her father's business. And she isn't waiting for me. I will explain.
  2. Is very intelligent- and not just in a sharp, high-IQ, witty way, but especially in a studious and wise way.
  3. Is prepared to learn, to change, to repent, to forgive, and to submit to my leadership.
  4. Is striving to be like Christ. Not because it makes guys like me pay attention, but because it's right.
  5. Presents a unified front to our children and others.
  6. Is honoring to the men in her life.
  7. Is interested in theology and philosophy. Like, really interested. Like, I can discuss eschatology and utilitarianism with her. And she loves it.
  8. Loves kids and knows how to handle/raise/teach them.
  9. Dresses modestly. And that doesn't mean in a burlap sack or a burka, either.
  10. Can cook a mean dinner, and, in general, run a home like a captain runs a ship.
  11. Can talk to me like a friend and a brother- like another person.
  12. Is joyful. Really, downright joyful- rejoicing where God has placed her. And is happy to be a woman- with all that that entails.
  13. Can look at a dilapidated home or an unpleasant situation and has the vision to see what it could be and what needs to be done to get it there.
  14. Is frugal and joyfully content.
  15. Is hospitable.
  16. Is physically disciplined.
  17. Is musically talented/inclined/knowledgeable/etc. This one is much more personal, but I think I can broaden this principle to apply to all of my sisters in Christ, not just those who might end up marrying a musician sometime down the road.
This post covers points 9-17.

Point 9

A godly woman whom I would want to spend my life with dresses modestly. And that doesn't mean in a burlap sack or a burka, either.


Ah, to find Biblical and God-pleasing balance in all things. I am one to err more on the side of functionality- I have my T-shirt and jeans (with the shirt tucked in for professionalism ;-)- what more could I need? I have one sister who is more prone to this error and another sister who swings to the other extreme.

Fashion isn't inherently bad. I've been convicted to take a little more time to make sure that I look (and smell) nice. It's polite, and it affects my testimony to others.

Modesty doesn't just mean not showing inordinate amounts of skin and/or shape- though it is very much that. It also means adorning yourself in such a way as not to draw attention to yourself. And, perhaps primarily, it means acting in this way.

So dressing in a burlap sack is not modest at all. It's distracting. Same thing with wearing prairie dresses all the time. They may be beautiful dresses which hide all the naughty-thought-inducing curves, but they make you stand out like a sore thumb.

Yes, we should be different from the world. We should look different, too- distinctly masculine/feminine, pure, modest, discreet, disciplined.

That doesn't mean that it's a bad thing to look nice- and to look stylish.

So girls- take care of yourselves. It's not a bad thing to make yourself presentable, modern-looking, and attractive.

But saying that opens the door to a hefty danger on the other side.

It really boils down to the question: who are you trying to please? God or man? If you are dressing to attract guys' eyes (or, as I hear is often the case, to look better than other girls... o.O), then you are striving to please man. That's sin.

To be practical, once we've pressed past the heart-issue of being a man-pleaser, we get into a grayer area. There's a difference between being attractive and lust-inducing. There's a point where you are putting a stumbling block before your brothers.

Note to guys- man up. I firmly believe that ladies have the responsibility to be considerate and Godly in their clothing choices. But we have a responsibility as well. The message of modesty should be preached to the girls, but we men need to keep our minds and eyes in check as well. Take every thought captive. It's not all their fault. Maybe God has given them different convictions. Or maybe He is just waiting to address their clothing because He is working on them in an area that is more important. My brothers. Please. Love your sisters in Christ. Take responsibility. Be the man.

Ladies, I'm not going to draw the lines for you. You must dress in such a way that is feminine and modest. That's what Scripture says. How that looks is between you, your father/family, and your Father in heaven.

I thought this quote was worth sharing:

"Your dresses should be tight enough to show you're a woman and loose enough to show you're a lady." - Edith Head

Something else to take into consideration is time stewardship. To the stereotypical woman who spends hours in the mirror daily, I ask you- is that really how God would have you invest His time?

To be real practical (speaking from my preference, here, not from Scripture- my sister says that she likes this kind of feedback), I hope the women in my family are able to wear feminine pants in a feminine way, and also an occasional pair of blue jeans when the occasion necessitates, but that they are usually found in dresses or skirts. And that they like it that way- I don't want to be the clothes police. For now, that's how I'll be leading my household, and that is something that I like to see in other young women as well.

On hair (after all, if I'm gonna open up one can of worms, I may as well...). It's Biblical for women to have long hair and for men to have short (1 Cor. 11, and I'm discussing norms, not exceptions). But how long is long? How short is short? Same deal here. There's plenty of Christian liberty and beautiful options and variety within the confines given us by Scripture. It's not my job to pull out the measuring tape. But I don't think it's a good thing (for men and women alike!) if I see you from behind and am left wondering which gender-camp you hail from.

Point 10

A godly woman whom I would want to spend my life with can cook a mean dinner, and, in general, run a home like a captain runs a ship.


WHOOPS.


*phew*

Much better.

This point is pretty self-explanatory and explicitly Biblical- she's the homemaker. And "the way to a man's heart is through his stomach."

(What do you meant that's not in Proverbs? *searches madly*)

OK, well, "She rises also while it is still night, and provides food for her household..."

Pr. 31 makes it clear. This lady is on top of things. So from being able to manage the finances to being able to manage the dinner table, she is indeed the home-maker. My heart safely trusts in her- I know she is making sure the books balance and the kids don't whither away.

Point 11

A godly woman whom I would want to spend my life with can talk to me like a friend and a brother- like another person.

If we're not married and we're not blood-relatives then we're brothers and sisters in Christ. I as a guy and you as a girl need to be able to relate as such. We should love each other in beautifully platonic purity. :-)

In other words, when we meet each other we shouldn't be thinking "potential spouse!" while our heart rate exceeds that of even the most vigorous cardio-athlete.


Nor should we be thinking "cooties!" and scampering elsewhere like the two Ns on a pair of magnets.

Indeed, really we should stop thinking about ourselves. She might marry me! Does he think I'm cute? Do I really have to talk to her- a girl!?! NOOOO!!!


And we need to start thinking about others. How can I love this person, this brother or sister in The LORD, in such a way as to edify him, to encourage her, to bless him, to please God?

Because remember, there's no "I" in "friend." Or something like that.


Point 12

A godly woman whom I would want to spend my life with is joyful. Really, downright joyful- rejoicing where God has placed her. And is happy to be a woman- with all that that entails.

It's a fruit of The Spirit. :-) As such, let's pause and say that joy should characterize every child of God- not just the ladies. If you don't have joy, something's wrong- you need to repent.


(Note that there's a difference between joy and happiness. I can be mournful and yet still resting in the joyful hope of the victory of Christ. But the deep and wonderful facets of joy are not what I'm here to study right now.)

Who would want to live with an angry or miserable person (spouse or parent)? Who would want to grow up in such a house?

How much more beautiful is a household which emanates the joy of Christ?

It's also important that we are joyful about the way God made us- content. As a man, I need to rejoice that God made me as a man and gladly assume the responsibilities, duties, and so on which correspond to Biblical manliness. The same for my sisters in Christ. Enjoy being a girl! Enjoy doing Biblically feminine things. If my wife was always groaning about how she really didn't want to be a homemaker and wished she could have become a brain surgeon, you can see how that would not only damage our relationship and the atmosphere of our home but also the worldview of our kids.

Point 13

A godly woman whom I would want to spend my life with can look at a dilapidated home or an unpleasant situation and has the vision to see what it could be and what needs to be done to get it there.


My mom is a first-class example of this. Messy house? Mounds of laundry on the floor? Moldy drywall that needs replaced? Or maybe we need to rip out the flooring?

If that's where The LORD is leading and where Dad is leading- move over. And take a "before" picture. Because it's going to be awesome.

This point also means that a godly woman doesn't shy away from helping the dirty homeless kid or cleaning up the home of the old lady we're trying to help.

A Godly woman- I've said it before- is a warrioress. Not a china doll. She'll do what needs done. She "maketh her arms strong." Extreme Makeover Home Edition has nothing on her. (In fact, she does extreme makeovers without the TV show budget.)

Point 14

A godly woman whom I would want to spend my life with is frugal and joyfully content.


This kinda goes along with point 13- and my mom is a great example of this one too. She can stretch a dollar like a rubber band. She can find good deals, she can manage the finances and balance the budget. So whether you have a little side business that you run from the home (talk about a homeschooling opportunity) or maybe you just have an eye for killer deals, you can be a real asset to your husband, by making the winning of the bread take a bit less of the sweat of his brow.

A related but separate point from frugality is joyful contentment.

I'm not rich. I'm exceedingly blessed and better off than many in this world, but I'm not rolling in the dough. At least not yet.

Which means that I probably won't have a mansion to offer my bride. Nor is it likely that we'll honeymoon on a fancy ship to an exotic location and sip drinks with umbrellas in them.


I can't afford those things right now. And I certainly don't want to chain myself to 30 years of debt just to get a big house.

I'd rather be a poor, free man than a rich slave.

I need a wife who can support me in this.

I'm an entrepreneur. I don't have a steady paycheck.
Let me pause to address a mindset with which I heartily disagree- that the $50-a-day job is a "real job" and jobs without a steady paycheck aren't. In both cases, God is the One who provides. (That random bit of insight was free.) Ooh, another random bit of insight- guys, "entrepreneur" is a label that's easy to slap on to just about anything. If you're planning on supporting a family, make sure that you aren't slapping that label on an idea you have or something you might do one day. We must pray for God's provision- but we must faithfully invest and work hard as well. "In all labor, there is profit, but mere talk leads only to poverty."
If the clients just aren't coming in, I need a helper who can joyfully rest in the hand of God and trust in His provision. (Another note to guys- if the clients aren't coming in, I shouldn't be so stuck to "pursuing my dream" that I can't do what it takes to provide for my family- whether that means lawn care or serving milkshakes at Chick-fil-a.)

If my wife is always pining for the big house, the fancy cruise, if we see the rich guy come in with his wife decked out in expensive jewelry and she looks longingly, then that shows a lack of vision on her part.

And it hurts, on my part.

Not because I believe that God has called me to be a millionaire- He may give and take as He sees fit- but because I really really want my girl to be happy.

And when her happiness is contingent upon me acquiring something which God has not called me to acquire, we have a problem.

An admirable example of this is Mary from It's a Wonderful Life.


She didn't need George Bailey to see the world or design skyscrapers or become a millionaire so that she could love him wholeheartedly. She took a broken-down (like, really broken-down) old house and turned it into a palace. She supported him by giving away their honeymoon money to keep the Building and Loan running. She was joyfully there by his side, supporting him through whatever he was going through.

I as the husband want to provide for my wife and family in the best way that I can (as God leads). But I don't know where God will take me or what trials we may have to endure. A wife who can support her husband through all the financial worries and troubles of life and who can find a way to make things work is a very valuable companion indeed.

So are you ready to rest in the hand of God and be joyfully content where He puts you, whether that's a trailer or a mansion?

Can you take them both with equal joy and say "The LORD giveth, The LORD taketh away, blessed be the name of The LORD?"

Because it's all His anyway.

Point 15

A godly woman whom I would want to spend my life with is hospitable.


I might be an elder in the local church someday. One of the requirements for being an elder is hospitality. I need a wife who can help me with that. I, living with her in an understanding way, want to help her by working with her needs in this area. She needs to support me by being able to throw a feast for our guests, making our house presentable, and so on.

I remember the story that Dad tells of when ours was one of the host-homes for a Christmas event at a church. One of the older men of the church walked into the house, looked around, and said "Rob is going to go far- he has a good wife."

What amazing insight by him! And what a testimony to the character of my mother!

While some may not be able to vocalize what this man saw, everyone feels it. A woman can truly make a house a home- it's not just a trite saying.

Point 16

A godly woman whom I would want to spend my life with is physically disciplined.

Now we're really getting into some practical stuff that's more what I would like than what God commands.

But there are nevertheless Biblical principles to be brought to bear here. Let's explore.

I'm into physical fitness. I like to work out, I try to eat right- so on. And I'd like to have a wife who can go on a run or a hike with me.


I also would like her to be able to make healthy meals, made-from-scratch foods, and so on.

These are preferences. Maybe God will give me a wife like this- maybe His plan is different. (Whatever it is, it's best.)

But everyone needs to deal with Biblical principles like good stewardship and self-control.

I realize that some people are overweight because of disease or other conditions over which they have no control.

But if you are overweight because you don't have the self-control to say "no" or the discipline to take a walk now and again, then this is a problem. This isn't just an issue of not looking nice- it's a character problem.

If you constantly eat garbage and drink poison (you know what they are!) then you need to consider whether that is being a good steward of the amazing body that God gave you. And if you're feeding garbage and poison to our kids- even worse.

Again, there's a balance here. I, for one, am prone to fall on the other side of that balance to the point where I can't enjoy a cup of hot chocolate because I'm too busy reading the ingredients list. That's not good either. It goes back to joyful contentment.

If God provides this non-free-range chicken or Christmas candy with unpronounceable ingredients, let us eat it and give thanks!

But I'd love to be able to wrestle with my great-grandchildren. And I'd love it even more if my wife was right there tickling Johnny alongside me.


I think eating right and staying in shape might just help us get there.

Even more importantly (to varying degrees for different believers), it's Biblical.

Hopefully I've navigated that minefield with some semblance of success. I look forward to hearing your comments. I firmly don't mean to say that all Christians should be P90X grads. But the Biblical principles do need to be dealt with. How you deal with them is between you and our Maker.

Point 17

A godly woman whom I would want to spend my life with is musically talented/inclined/knowledgeable/etc.



Like I said in the longer version of the point- this doesn't apply to all of you. :-) Indeed, it doesn't necessarily apply to my future spouse- that's in God's hands. This, like being able to run with me, is a much less important thing then whether she has right doctrine or honors her parents. I'm being brutally practical in hopes that it will edify some of you.

But let me get to the point of which "the point" above is just a practical example.

I have been called to a certain mission, a certain facet of dominion-taking by God. All men have. Mine, at least for now, is music. God has given me this to conquer for His Glory. I would like to have a wife that can help me in this specific area.

Now please, don't start piano lessons. (Well, do start piano lessons, but for different reasons. Like because they're awesome.)

This goes back to how I began this series of posts- applying yourself to real-world pursuits. If you have practical skills that you can use to help your husband in- well, whatever it is he does, then you are all the more prepared to be a helper to him.

(And don't take that to mean that you need to figure out what kind of man you want to marry and what kind of woman he would want and... this is just a practical outplay of what I said at the very beginning of this series. Invest your time wisely, and pursue what God wants you to. Let Him worry about matching skill-sets.)

Leftovers

Here are some other things that I'm not going to spend a lot of time on, but which are quite important:

- The way she treats her family/siblings. That will speak volumes about how she will treat me and our kids.
- The way she takes- or doesn't take- responsibility. Is it always because of something or someone else? Or does she take responsibility for her actions and character? Is she trustworthy? (Pr. 20:6)
- Does she not only "let boys be boys" (in the righteous, dignified, un-barbaric and Biblical sense), but love and cultivate their daring, bravery, strength, and manliness? Does she prevent little brother Johnny from ever doing something that might end up giving him a black eye or bloody nose? Or does she encourage him to be brave, praise him when he comes in with a "war-wound," bandage him up and send him back out into the fray?

Purity

You may notice that purity wasn't on my list. Is it important? Very much so. Indeed, it is on my list. Just not the list that I posted here.

But physical purity is the milk. Let us press into the meat. I can find an army of virgins, not one of whom is a warrioress for The Kingdom of Heaven. I want more than just a girl who hasn't done drugs or kissed five previous boyfriends. I want a girl who has done and is set on doing great things for The Kingdom of God. I want more than a girl who never gave her heart to Edward Cullen- I want a girl who has given her heart to Christ.


I would rather have a harlot who sold her body for years but has now sold her soul to Christ than a girl who checked all the boxes and is a whitewashed tomb.

Just sayin'.


On Perfection

I realize that this is a long list and that no one is going to be perfect. Also that this list isn't perfect, or exhaustive. My list isn't the standard- God's Word is. I don't expect perfection of my spouse, and I hope she doesn't expect perfection of me ('cuz she ain't gonna get it).

I don't expect her to be like Christ in everything.

But I do expect her to desire to be like Christ in everything.

And really, that's where it starts.

If she strives to please Him, the rest will come in His good time.

One More Time

I also wish to re-state that some things I talked about are objective truths that apply to all women- or all Christians! Others are more specific and practical, and will apply at different levels to different people, and perhaps not at all to some. Some of them are even things that might not apply to anyone beyond my own household, being my own personal desires and convictions.

That's All, Folks!

Like I said, this is an open-ended list- it's not a checklist, but rather a list of things to think about and discuss in the light of God's Word. It is an attempt to give my sisters in Christ a bit of a better picture of just what guys like me think a "godly woman" is. There's where those practical parts come in handy.

More importantly, it is an exploration of what God thinks a "godly woman" is- not because I know what pleases Him, but because I want to know what pleases Him. He tells us in His Word. May He open our eyes more and more to see His Truth!

Sisters, hopefully this gives you some ideas, not of what this one guy wants you to become, but of what Christ wants you to become. Brothers, let us encourage our sisters to godliness, and let us ourselves strive to admire that which God finds admirable.

This concludes my thoughts on Biblical femininity. For now, at least. Thanks for reading and for interacting!

(Oh, wait! Did I list that she absolutely must be drop-dead gorgeous. ;-) Actually, she doesn't have to be- and I could go into the whole inner/outer beauty thing, but I'm just going to stop this article. Now.)

39 comments:

Kaitlyn said...

Thanks for posting all three parts! It was great to read your thoughts on biblical femininity. :o)

Gabriel Hudelson said...

Hey Kaitlyn. Thanks for reading! Glad you enjoyed it. :-)

(And I'm enjoying the Pride & Prejudice piece on your blog right now. That film had a beautiful score.)

Racheal said...

Bravo!

I only want to pick on one part--point 16. Now, I don't think that being physically in shape and eating healthy is a bad thing (not at all), so don't get me wrong. I just wanted to point out that a lot of women may not want to go for a run with you simply because women are built different and running is an activity more suited to the male build. (If you've ever lived on/around a military base and watched the troops do PT, you'd soon understand where that comment comes from. You can tell from a distance which are women :) )

As for me personally, I like to get my exercise through hard work (or horse riding since my Aunt bought me a horse--that's a long story...) Running gives me shin-splints so I only run once in a while and no long distances :)

Overall though, these are great points that any young woman ought to at least consider! Keep up the good work! I get both amusement and edification reading your blog.

Aubrey Hansen said...

A very enjoyable and thought-provoking read, as usual. I don't have anything to add this time except to reiterate my appreciation for your writing style - you do a very good job of mixing a jab of humor to make the heavy thinking easily swallowable. :) (I think that's the first time I've ever seen you use the o.O smilie...) Thanks for taking the time to write this from your convictions!

Gabriel Hudelson said...

Racheal- totally agree. Like I said, that's something that is totally preferential and not necessary. It's the principle that's necessary.

Aubrey- I love that smilie.

~Miss Raquel said...

Hey Gabriel!

Just got your comment on my blog...thanks for stopping by! I am now a follower of yours :)

I didn't have too much time to read all your 'Thoughts on Biblical Femininity', so I'm copying and pasting them to a document to read later...if you don't mind. I'll be back to comment with my thoughts ;)

Many blessings! It's always so awesome to find a young, Christian man who is blogging! I have a few friends who do...you may be interested in some of their blogs. My friend, Daniel, blogs at: www.wilsonftw.blogspot.com. You maybe find his blog amusing ;)

Blessings to you, sir!
~Miss Raquel

www.God-sDaughter.blogsot.com

Gabriel Hudelson said...

Hello and welcome, Miss Raquel!

I don't mind at all, and I shall indeed look forward to hearing back from you in the future. :-)

Gabriel Hudelson said...

(Indeed, Racheal- and all my other lady readers- I've been posting things that are more practical and more my opinion along with things that are more Scriptural and less opinion-based. I try to make that distinction in-post, but I'm curious as to whether you find those bits helpful or irritating/frustrating/hindering?)

Racheal said...

To answer your question Gabriel, I like hearing your opinion as well as the solely Scriptural stuff.

By the way, I was wondering if you mind if I put a link to your blog on mine?(http://rachealsramblings.weebly.com)I know at least a couple of the people who read my blog would enjoy yours.

Gabriel Hudelson said...

Naw, I wouldn't mind. I'd be honored. :-)

Bailey said...

You made me laugh. Which is good, because I'm just about to tackle consumer math.

In addressing your most recent question in the comments, I have mixed feelings. I don't really disagree with any of your points, as I do see them as practical, if not essential, and Biblical. (Yay for talking eschatology!) My Marine brother tells me he's going to make me run with him: I'm thinking up excuses.

It's strange, though, to read this list. We girls usually do it, and it's hard to swallow my own medicine! As I'm reading and being an oversensitive female, it doesn't seem to leave room for individuality or the girl's personal preferences and dreams. We do have dreams and talents beyond hospitality and children, though it's a rare woman who does not acknowledge those homemaking dreams.

That's a bad way of saying it. What I mean is that I personally believe that a match made in heaven is more than two people who share almost everything in common. I think there's something deeper...a connection and an affection that loves a girl/guy even she isn't the best cook or he doesn't dress the sharpest. To me, there must be something deeper and far more essential -- because I've seen in my own parents' marriage how their convictions and even theological beliefs have gone in polar opposites. I mean, I hope I don't marry based on things like making a mean macaroni and cheese, wearing skirts and dress size.

Not that I'm saying you have these expectations or haven't thought of my above diatribe -- I'm not really criticizing this post, which I enjoyed, so much as just thinking aloud.

One thing to note (sorry, I'm a rambler) is that parent/sibling relationships aren't always an indicator of how devoted a girl can be. It takes two to tango, and sometimes the girl in question can be mostly innocent in family spats. I know of girls who have been practically forced to leave their homes due to oppressive parents who still made beautiful, faithful and honoring brides. The girls, I mean. Not the parents.

In short, it amazes me that anyone gets married at all. :P

Gabriel Hudelson said...

"We do have dreams and talents beyond hospitality and children"

I thought I was encouraging the development of those talents... if not in so many words.

At any rate, if I wasn't, I am!

"I think there's something deeper...a connection and an affection that loves a girl/guy even she isn't the best cook or he doesn't dress the sharpest."

I believe it's called love.

:-)

As far as parent/sibling relationships go, the overall status of the relationship may indeed be a bad indicator of either side, but how the young woman handles the overall status of the relationship will make a huge statement as to the content of her character- or lack thereof.

Thanks for the comment. I enjoy discussing with you.

Bailey said...

Ha! Forgive me while I pat myself on the back for looking stupid. It's a special talent of mine.

After figuring out the breakeven point for selling soccer balls, I realized what I was trying to ask.

I read an article blaming the unpreparedness of young women for the dearth of godly marriages occurring. I got the impression that the authors felt that a godly man would not want a woman who wasn't accomplished enough -- couldn't fry chicken without burning them or didn't pass her consumer math course with straight A's. It seemed like a simple equation: godly girl + godly boy = marriage, no questions asked. Their idea of a godly young woman, of strong femininity, was much like yours. Do you believe it's more an issue of compatibility or more something that you'll just know if she's the right one, apart from the preference list?

I'm just wondering how essential these things are for you and what would be the bottom line thing for you that would decide The One, Female Version. I mean, would it be possible for you, as you, to love a girl enough even if she wasn't proficient in homemaking skills or was currently working or at college or whatever? Not a ranting, raving feminist but a girl who doesn't exactly match this list but would be happy to follow your lead?

That's what I meant about something deeper than mere compatibility. Because obviously, love's a choice, but we don't marry everyone we love. I'm just confused a bit -- the title's "Thoughts on Biblical Femininity" but you openly admit that it's a mixture of your preferences for what you're looking for in a wife. And I'll be honest -- I don't measure up at all. ;o)

Does this make any sense? (And don't answer in the negative. I will be offended.) Thanks!

Bush Maid said...

So I left a comment and blogger ate it. >.< Now I have to write it all over again... (sorry for its lengthiness. :P)

*applauds long and loudly* Bravo, Gabriel! I very much enjoyed the last installment of this series. :) It made me laugh aloud, nod in agreement, and frown in thought. I especially liked your thoughts on modesty. I don't come across many people that share my view on that aspect. It was a pleasant surprise to see that you do. :)

I found your opinions most helpful, actually. Personally, I have no doubt that there is such a young woman out there that God is preparing to become the wife you need and have described here. (I believe this for everyone who is living in God's perfect will, actually) Though some of your points don't specifically apply to most young women, they do give us something to think about, and also (for me) something to pursue. (even if my only reason is simply that I love to learn how to do new things! :D)

Practicality is something I am big on, so the practical points you have listed are something I agree with highly. A wife that follows the saying, "use it up, wear it out, make do, or do without" would be a HUGE asset to her husband, much more so than a china doll figure.

Whilst we're on personal opinions, there is one point that - for me - would be high on my own list: and that is a healthy sense of humour. :) If I had to live with someone who never understood a joke, could never see the funny side, and could never laugh at themselves, I just might go crazy--er. o.O I think good humour is from our awesome God, and it is something I hold precious. So for me, it is a must for someone I would be going to spend my life with! :D A person who you can laugh with makes tough times a lot easier to bear.

(You know, I'd almost suggest making this series its own blog page and buttons for your readers to share. :D Anyone would get something - even if small! - out of reading it.)

In closing, I want to thank you for taking the time and the effort to share your thoughts on such a vast subject for your sisters in Christ, Gabriel. I know this sister got a *lot* out of it! So thankyou very much. :)


(P.S. Well... he IS *Captain* Jack Sparrow after all... ;D)

Gabriel Hudelson said...

"I mean, would it be possible for you, as you, to love a girl enough even if she wasn't proficient in homemaking skills or was currently working or at college or whatever? Not a ranting, raving feminist but a girl who doesn't exactly match this list but would be happy to follow your lead?"

Yes. By God's Grace, subject to His leading, I think so. But it will weigh into my thought process.

"I'm just wondering how essential these things are for you and what would be the bottom line thing for you that would decide The One, Female Version."

The bottom line is that there should be a stamp across her forehead (figuratively) which says "SOLD- to Jesus Christ."

I trust God to open my eyes to "the one" as He sees fit. I'll be looking for the blessing of my parents, her parents, our siblings, and the elders of our churches.

Would I say "I can't marry her, she went to college! GASP!"

No. :-D

Maybe she's not into running, or can't carry a tune in a bucket, or uses fire alarms to tell her when dinner is done. But if she's sold out for Christ then all of that is just secondary.

Which, by the way, isn't to say that it can't/shouldn't be learned.

"Do you believe it's more an issue of compatibility or more something that you'll just know if she's the right one, apart from the preference list?"

I believe that godly guy + godly girl = godly marriage.

Even if we don't hit it off, or have the same interests- if we are both wholly interested in Christ then all that fades away.

Really, I'm not sure I understand this question. Please don't be offended.

Do I think I'll just get the feeling- "this is the one!" I don't know. I've had that feeling before and don't have it anymore towards the same person. (Otherwise known as a "crush!")

So if by "just know" you mean that I'll "feel" that she's the right one? I hope that I will feel that, but I hope that there will be much more to my decision than just that feeling. I want to base my decision off of God's Word and how well she measures up to it.

I hope she requires the same of me.

It's scary, but I think it's Biblical.

To address your confusion: I am much more willing to marry a girl who doesn't measure up to my preferences than I am to marry a girl who doesn't measure up to the Scriptural principles (or at least strive to measure up to them) that I tried to represent in my list.

I need to get on to other things, so I hope that some of that was coherent, and I look forward to continuing our discussion.

Gabriel Hudelson said...

Aussie- amen and amen. I'm glad you enjoyed it! Thanks for the comment, and I agree- a good sense of humor is quite a plus.

:-D

Bailey said...

For someone who allegedly didn't understand the question, you answered it very well. I was just interested into more of your thought processes behind it, as this is something I'm thinking through myself. Thanks for keeping up the discussion with me. I will go bother somebody else now.

Lisa said...

Let me start by saying that I kept checking you blog yesterday and waiting for this post! I was so thrilled to see it up this morning. Thank you so much for these posts.

I have to admit that I started reading your point on modesty with a very skeptical outlook. So many people have a "skirts only" attitude, and I was pleasantly surprised to read your opinion. My convictions are that modest pants/jeans and a feminine shirt are as modest as a skirt/dress. And, I have seen many dresses (even conservatively long and overall modest dresses) be more immodest than pants in some situations. I know others don't share this conviction, and I understand, but, for myself, I have done a good amount of thinking and reading on this, and....well, maybe I'll just do a blog post on modesty one day :) I agree that it comes down to an issue of the heart, and I really appreciated your post.

My two favorite things were Point 11 and the part where you talk about contentment in Point 12. I am SO GRATEFUL that my parents have taught us that before you are married, girls and boys are just brothers and sisters "with all purity." And, touching on contentment, Phil. 4:11 has been the most encouraging and convicting verse for me..."for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content." Wow.

"Now please, don't start piano lessons. (Well, do start piano lessons, but for different reasons. Like because they're awesome.)"

LOVED this!!!!!!!

Thanks so much. You have encouraged me to start writing a post on what my thoughts on Biblical femininity and masculinity are. I don't know how long it will take me to finish, but..... :D

Gabriel Hudelson said...

Bailey, you're no bother. I enjoy discussing things with you.

:-)

Glad your question was answered. Thanks for the discussion!

Lisa, glad you enjoyed it!

Bush Maid said...

Two thumbs up for your thoughts on modesty, Lisa! :D I'll be looking forward to reading your blog posts on those topics. :)

Grace Pennington said...

First, Gabriel, I want to thank you for your honesty. :D I know you're really putting yourself out there to be picked on and verbally abused, and you're doing it because you love us in Christ and want to lend a helping hand. :) That means a lot to me. So thank you. :)

Really, I don't know that I have any quibbles with your list. It was all thought-provoking and enjoyable to read. I think I need to chew on it for awhile. ;)

One thing that did come to me has already been discussed. I believe strongly that any marriage between any man and any woman can work with the grace of God, no matter how "compatible" they are. That said, there's nothing wrong with using some wisdom when making your choice. Since you know that your wife will be the homemaker in your household, it's reasonable to look for someone who is proficient in those areas, even if you wouldn't exclude someone because of that.

The value I see in lists such as this is grounding. When you start to care about someone, it's oh-so-easy to get your head in the clouds and just do what feels right. Having a list to refer back to can help ground you in reality -- is this really the best idea? Is this person really a wise choice? Even if you don't end up going with every item on the list.

I hope that makes sense. It's something I've been pondering since you started this series.

Ultimately, God's wisdom is where it's at, and we need to pray for that when choosing our life partner.

Thank you again, Gabriel. :) As with all my brothers-in-Christ, I pray for your wife often, and I'll look forward to seeing what God does in your life. :)

God bless you!
~ Grace

Gabriel Hudelson said...

Thanks so much for the comment, Grace. And for the prayer I thank you both on my behalf and on behalf of my future spouse. :-D

I love what you had to say about the list concept, too. Very true.

Rachel said...

Hi, I just found your blog and I am really enjoying it!
I really liked the post :Thoughts on Biblical Femininity - Pt. 1

where you said about the girl you want to marry not wait for you, to be busy doing work for her father ( or something like that)
and I really agree with that! I think a lot of girls in this age are fantisizing about the "guy they marry'' and Marriage isn't the end all.

thanks for posting that!
--Rachel

Gabriel Hudelson said...

And thank you for reading, Rachel! I'm glad it was encouraging for you!

amy said...

Great post once again! It was nice to hear what the final points to your series consisted of.

I like point 16 a lot. You did a fine job walking through that one ;) This is actually something I’m hoping to work on in 2012. The Biblical principles are important. I want to be intentional about obeying them and simply staying in shape for the glory of God. Food/exercise might seem like a small area to show self-control in, but I think small things are the training grounds for big ones.

All the other points are good too…I just won’t bore you with comments on them all ;)

As far as your question regarding what we think of hearing opinion-based thoughts as well as the more Scripture based stuff, I do like a mixture of both, so long as it is clearly differentiated what you’re talking about (which you clearly did in this post). But yes, practical is helpful.
Last thing before I end this. Sometime, I’d really like to hear more on two particular topics. The first topic would be what are your views on college, specifically for girls? I noticed in your discussion with Bailey, college was mentioned several times and in a rather negative light. Perhaps you also mentioned it in the post, but I totally missed it if that’s the case. So anyway, curious on that point :)

The other thing is, in the short time I’ve been reading your blog, you have mentioned a number of times ‘dominion-taking’ (or something similar to that). This is not a term/concept I’m very familiar with (at least put into those words). I assume it comes from early in Genesis where the Lord tells Adam to have dominion over the earth, but a further explanation of that whole issue would be awesome. Basically what I just wrote is sorta my extent of knowledge on it :)

You don’t have to tackle these questions right now, unless you just want to; just wanted to let you know that in the future at least, I’d like to discuss them.

Thanks for the posts on Biblical femininity! They were helpful & I thoroughly enjoyed them!

Gabriel Hudelson said...

Thanks much (pity me, Bailey ;-) for the comment, Amy!

I don't have time to go into those right now, but those are two very important discussions. Especially the dominion one.

Thanks for asking, and I shall indeed bear those in mind!

"I think small things are the training grounds for big ones."

Amen and amen! He who is faithful with a little...

Taralyn Rose said...

I came across your blog today and was quite pleasantly surprised! Not very many young men seem to keep blogs, or write entertaining, thought provoking stuff at that!
I'm going to enjoy reading and agreeing with the things you have to say :-)

Also, it's wonderful to meet another brother in Christ (if it is only in cyber-space) ;-)

Gabriel Hudelson said...

Hi Taralyn! Nice to meet you as well. I hope you find your time on my blog edifying, and I look forward to getting to know you better, if only virtually. :-)

Taralyn Rose said...

Likewise :-D

ACR said...

Hello Gabriel-this is Andrew R., a Christian young man out of Illinois. I just seriously checked out your blog for the first time, and I have to say I am thrilled to see your consistent application of a biblical worldview and your vigorous confrontation of cultural issues for Christ. I will definitely be following your blog and joining in the conversation.

Godspeed and keep up the great blogging!

Buaidh no Bas,

Andrew R.
www.crossandresurrectionmusic.blogspot.com

ACR said...

P. S.-Oh. And your music is awesome too.

Andrew R.

Aimee said...

I was encouraged by what you said about modesty. I so agree that modesty can be beautiful and stylish. I think a lot of people go with the "it's just a heart issue" making no application for how they dress because the 'burkas' and super shapeless dresses are so foreign and unattractive, and they think there are no other options. I don't think that was God's intention; He is the Creator of beauty. I also understand that position though. It is so tempting as a girl to be obsessed with beauty (or the lack thereof) that some just try to eliminate the problem with a dress code. The problem is, one can still have an immodest heart! Hmm... this can be tricky.
Thanks, Gabe.

Gabriel Hudelson said...

Thanks to both comments, Andrew! :-) I shall look forward to future discussions with you.

Gabriel Hudelson said...

Hey Aimee! Good to hear from you. It's been some time!

Yes, that is one of my pet peeves- when people say "it's really a heart issue" and use that- true though it is- to eliminate any necessity for practical, real-world obedience.

Marjo.....B. said...

Hello! I found your blog through Daniel Swanson's.
I was excited to read this post! Thank you so much for sharing all these thoughts. It seems that we girls know just what they want for our future husbands, and we easily get caught up in plaintive thoughts such as''where ARE the godly young men''; forgetting to equip ourselves to the best of our ability to serve God, as well as those hopeful amazing future husbands in the years to come!
It was so GOOD to read your thoughts. Very inspiring.
Reading through previous comments, I see it is the norm to state our personal opinions on the points you mentioned. All I can say is: I agree with all your points! Apart from the most crucial points which I agree with of course, it was refreshing to read your points on health, fitness and frugality! Bravo. :)

Have a blessed week.

Gabriel Hudelson said...

Welcome Marjo! Glad you enjoyed it! Thanks for stopping by. :-)

Hannah said...

"I can't enjoy a cup of hot chocolate because I'm too busy reading the ingredients list."

:) That's why you make your own: 2 c. instant dry milk, 1 c. sugar, 3/4 c. cocoa powder
It's cheaper and healthier, and it tastes better!
:)

Gabriel Hudelson said...

Ha! Thanks for sharing the recipe! :-D

Anonymous said...

Gabriel,
I just stumbled onto this post and I wanted to tell you that it was so refreshing and made my heart glad!

As the mother of a daughter with strong Biblical convictions about courtship/marriage, I am so encouraged to know that there are young men out there that are also willing to wait for God's best!

I am going to begin praying for you to continue to grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord because it gives me real hope to hear a young man expressing firm, Biblical convictions!

Thank you and keep writing! But more importantly, keep seeking to know the Lord Jesus Christ more fully and stay focused on serving Him!

Mrs. Rita Rice