There’s not much mention of the word today from a positive or cultivating perspective. Feminism…yes. But femininity…not so much. Seems like more and more it is treated like a blight on a budding flower.
I don’t know why femininity should be associated with weakness. Women should be free to express who they are without thinking, ‘I need to act like a man, or I need to tone it down to be successful.’ That’s a very good way to keep women down. ~ Zooey Deschanel
There is a lot of strength and power in the Godly gift of femininity. And it is indeed a gift which as any gift, needs to be directed and developed by God. Elizabeth Elliot wrote…
I find myself in the sometimes quite uncomfortable position of having to belabor the obvious, and hold up examples of femininity to women who almost feel apologetic for being feminine or being womanly. I would remind you that femininity is not a curse. It is not even a triviality. It is a gift, a divine gift, to be accepted with both hands, and to thank God for. Because remember, it was His idea…
Women need to stop being apologetic for their femininity, embrace it and allow God to mold it.
[Calpurnia] seemed glad to see me when I appeared in the kitchen, and by watching her I began to think there was some skill involved in being a girl. ~ To Kill A Mockingbird Chapter 12
“Some skill involved in being a girl”. How rich is that?!?!
I was at the bank some time ago. I looked around at the customers waiting and noticed there were 13 females and 10 males inside waiting to complete their transactions. I did a quick study of everyone and then it hit me…you could not tell the difference between the men and the women. They way they dress, their stance, posture, etc…the same. I was the only one with a dress on. Now…I wasn’t “dressed to the hilt”. I had on a sundress and a cute pair of strappy sandals. I received looks from both men and women, though their eyes sent an opposite message. This is depressing. And it’s not just this small snippet of secular society. It’s the same thing in the church which is even more depressing.
Something I’ve noticed…when I do see a woman in a dress, she carries herself differently…more…feminine. And men treat a feminine woman differently…more caring, protective.
It’s not femininity in and of itself that causes a problem. It’s the misuse of femininity by some women combined with the lack of practiced discernment by men. Farrah Fawcett once said “And, used properly, that combination (intuition and femininity) easily jumbles the brain of any man I’ve ever met.” The use of femininity in this manner is nothing short of emotional abuse…and sinful. Femininity without Godly direction is a powerful weapon indeed. However, to discard femininity is like throwing the baby out with the bath water.
In a post on Submission (here), Ms. Bytes wrote…
It’s no great secret that most men tend to respond protectively, helpfully, kindly, to what they perceive as feminine.
Do I hear an Amen?!?
I watched a video about some research that was done on bikinis. While the topic is different, the revelations from the research apply. In a study, they monitored men’s brains while showing them a series of photos. When men were shown a photo of a girl in a bikini, the section of their brains that showed activity was the same section that activated when shown tools. IOW…the object in the photo was something to be “used”. In contrast, when the same men were shown a woman modestly dressed (I’m not talking frumpy here but feminine), the area of the brain which showed activity was the same area that kicks in to signal “protection”.
Women were created different than men, not lesser than. We need to reclaim our Biblical womanhood with all the glorious gifts it contains. And we need to “rightly divide the word of truth” in the process. Meekness does not mean mousey, gentleness does not mean living life as an after thought or accessory and submission does not mean being a doormat for dirty boots.
We need to stop allowing the world to force feed us, through movies, advertising, books, soap operas, etc, their version of womanhood.
Romans 12:2(Phillips) Don’t let the world around you squeeze you into its own mold, but let God re-make you so that your whole attitude of mind is changed
All I know is after…um…well……many years, Mr. Gypsy still opens my car door for me…even when I’m the one driving!
Remember…To gloss over these profundities is to deprive women of the central answer to the cry of their hearts, “Who am I?” No one but the Author of the Story can answer that cry. ~ Elizabeth Elliot