That Woman

You know what I do when opening this page up and writing feels too scary to face? It’s a little trick I learned from Julia Cameron…author of The Artist’s Way.  I talk to myself like I am a little three year old: “It’s okay Abi!  Let’s just have fuuuuun! Oh look you opened the page – that’s GREAT!  Now what does having fun feel like to you?  Words are fun and talking is fun!  Let’s have fun.”

I encourage the heck out of my little self over the least step forward and it brings a smile to my face.  And it works!

Thank you for reading my last post.  I think that’s been one of the biggest, scariest gremlins in my thoughts: not wanting to waste people’s time.  There’s a blogger everywhere we look.  There’s a helpful article at every click of the mouse.  There’s a funny post to go with each day of the week. And in the spiritual space, there are ‘good’ pieces of spiritual advice/encouragement a plenty.  Enough to keep us reading from the time we wake up until we hit the pillow at night.  Do you take yourself seriously?  I take myself seriously some days and others I feel like I’m the world’s biggest joke on two legs.  Of course that’s an exaggeration but I know you can relate.  It’s that voice that tells you ‘Ha! You want to take up people’s time?! Like an expert or something??  Like a writer or something?! Ha!’

That voice and its darn ‘ha!’.  Well, ‘ha!’ to you voice.  Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.  Do you hear me cackling?  Because that’s what I am doing right in your face voice: laughing and laughing and laughing.  I’m not an expert!  I’m not a writer!  But maybe I’m on my way.  And the thought of it makes my heart lurch forward….so I’m going to follow the lurch instead of your critical voicy self.

Having said all of that, it really does mean something to me that you read the last post.  Your time is a gift.  Your ears and your heart are an honor.  You were made with such craftsmanship and such exacting design by a Creator who values you more than you can wrap your mind around.  You have immense value to Him….so the fact that you gave me your time is humbling.  And thrilling!  And very humbling.

Last time I mentioned that I’m paying attention to the deep thinking.  It seems like that is the place in us that He is present and He is at work.  Sure, He springs big and quick thoughts into our blatant path, too.  But the low and rumbling part of you where thinking and being and listening blend together – that seems like the spot we can take a step back from and observe what He is doing in us….if we want to.  Sometimes I don’t want to!  But often it’s well worth the time and journey.

Out of all the things I listed that I’ve been deep thinking about, the one that has swirled the most since then is this topic of womanhood.  What a mountain.  As I’ve pondered, my thoughts have been trying to gravitate towards a top ten list.  Like what are the top ten things a woman should be.  What are the top ten things that make a woman great.  What are the top ten things that make womanhood womanhood.  Gag.  First, gag because I don’t have such lists.  And don’t lists feel dead?  Like ‘do these ten things to achieve awesome in womanhood.’

I know some amazing women though.  Whew.  I can’t think of a single one who is the total package because, uh I know them!  I know their imperfections.  But the areas of beauty and strength in womanhood that shine through their imperfections make the strengths even more powerful.  I’m going to attempt a deep sea dive into this arena and I’m wondering if you would help me.  I want to host conversations with some of the women who have caught my eye and focus in on the strengths they display that are whoa level.  Would you have a conversation with me about this?  Don’t feel the need to comment publicly if you’d rather whisper your short thought to me.  Just message me.

I’d like to know:

What is the thing that trips you up the most in womanhood?
What is one of your dreams as it relates to being the woman you were created to be?
What is something you tend to admire in other women, again and again?
What has God taught you about womanhood?

I REALLY TRULY ACTUALLY would love to have your help.  This isn’t a huge incentive, but if you contribute, I’ll list you with me when I sign my ‘Love, Abi’ at the end.  But I won’t indicate what part you played so as to keep it safe for your honesty.

To be a woman is something so beautiful.  It can be painful.  But that’s what makes Salvation, Salvation. Saving from pain…sometimes the saving comes through the pain so that the pain ceases to be our identity and instead it’s a badge of beauty that opens up story after story. I am so excited to delve in.  Delve with me.

Abi (See right here!  Your name could be right here!)

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  1. Hey Abi. Great article and good thoughts. I mean blog, not article. Even though I am a man, I am going to post two thoughts from what you said.

    First, fun is way more important than I ever thought as a young man. It was really important as a kid, but then I grew up. After being older/old, I think fun is something I should have never left behind or grown out of. So good on you for that!

    Second, some thoughts on a woman as a wife. I have a wife and two daughters and a few years ago, I think I finally learned something about the way we are supposed to relate as man/wife. I grew up with lots of talk about the man is the head and the woman needs to submit, etc. And I think that is true. But when I read that God created the woman to be the helper, I don't think I ever understood it. I am not saying I understand it now, but I understand it better. A few years ago, I realized that some of the things that frustrated me about my wife (and her about me) were the things that we were different in. And I realized that she is gifted in things I am deficient in. She makes up for a loss in me to make the both of us a whole.

    And I saw that I NEED what she has that used to frustrate me. I don't have it. I am less without that. And so maybe helper is more about making up for what I am missing and not so much about other stereotypes.

    Anyway, I am still learning about all that, but loved your blog and what you had to say so thought I would jump in. Have a great weekend!

  2. Hey Abi! I LOVE your writings-and consider them. As it relates to being a Woman, what God has shown me is that it is OKAY. I love being one! For a long time I thought that being a woman meant being less than or second-hand so I didn't aspire towards or reach for much. But one day the Lord showed me that I, with all my imperfections and 'jackedupness'that I was fearfully and tailor made. What I really love is the ability to give confidence. I think that is innate in my womanhood. I believe womanhood has the ability to inspire people to take on the world. Oh, and that "ha ha ha" in your blog pushed an involuntary Yeah! out of me. 🙂

  3. In an attempt to keep it simple, I am going to say that my favorite thing about women is that we are NURTURING. We enable things to grow! Sometimes figuratively and often literally! Motherhood gave me a chance to experience that. The opportunities to give of myself to help these little ones thrive. To get up in the middle of the night to tend to their needs. To feed them, clothe them, shelter them and provide them with the love and safety that they need to flourish. When I think of these traits in women that I admire, I automatically think of the friends that are deep in the work of fostering babies and children. Possibly those that need the most nurturing of all. THAT is one of the most powerful and inspiring examples of womanhood to me. (Wish I could add more, but my own baby just woke up, so I'll end my thoughts there.) Hope I was able to contribute something! Looking forward to hearing more from you!

  4. for the past 3 months I have been exploring feminine power. What does that look like? I feel like we have been shown the feminine in a distorted lens (through the patriarchal powers and societal expectations which are very contradicting in messages- be sexy and show your tits while wearing a bathingsuit- but don't show your tits when breastfeeding. Be all mother- be successful in career at the same time be the pinterest maven and housekeeper cook ect)
    Now I want to know what the true feminine is.
    My hunch is boiled down to this- Be glue (connectivity, affection, nurture) Be creative (life affirming, imaginative, inventive) Be still (go with the flow, stop trying to control, peace)
    We shall see where this leads

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