For the past month or so, I've been taking part in Christopher West's DVD series on Theology of the Body, called Freedom To Love. It's been quite eye opening and has made me look at things I had never thought about in my life. In fact, many of the things that I believed growing up were targeted in this series as being the wrong way to look at things. I've slowly begun to change the way that I view my faith, it's been absolutely spectacular! Here's a very small clip from one of the lectures that I would like to share with you:
This past week, we looked at part 4 of 5 in this series, and something hit me. The talk was about morality, and something that he said broke me, he said that almost every woman, by nature, has an overwhelming fear of being abandoned in life. Wow! I felt the wind knocked out of me! That was me! That's been me in every single aspect in my life for as long as I can remember. I broke down and I cried. I was shaking and I was crying and something began working within me.
After the 50 minute video lecture was finished, our young adults group discussed what the talk had been about together, like we always did. This particular week it was myself, a gentleman that I have known for years from church, and our young seminarian. Our discussions went on to point out different things that stood out to us, and allowed us to expand on the topics that spoke to each of us.
Our seminarian pointed out to me a few books that are along the lines of what I wanted. What spoke to me was about the importance of true gender roles in life, how men can be men, and women can be women. Under this topic two books were recommended to me, both written by a husband and wife team, John and Stasi Eldredge. One of them is about the true nature of a man's heart and desires called "Wild at Heart" and the other is about a woman's heart, desires and nature called "Captivating". Another important topic to me was how we need both parental roles in our lives to fully develop the way we were meant to, and so we also discussed books that are for our healing from hurts in life, and how to learn to be a well rounded person with only having one parent. Needless to say my reading list for the summer now consists of 13 new books.
Last night I bought "Wild at Heart" and "Captivating". It's apparently good to read both to not only understand how your own mind works, but also to try and help you understand how the other gender things as well. I've started to read "Captivating" already, and I'm having to force myself to read it slow so that I can reflect on it as I'm going and to try and get as much out of it as I can. I'm only in Chapter 1 right now, but there was something written in the introduction that I want to share with you:
"The mystery of a feminine heart was meant to be a good thing. By the way. A source of joy. Yet it has become a source of shame - women almost universally feel that they are 'too much' and 'not enough.' At the same time. (Which is crazy making.) And men tend to pull away from the deeper waters of a woman's soul, unsure of what they will find there or how to handle it. And so we have missed the treasure that is the heart of a woman, missed the richness femininity was meant to bring to our lives, missed the way it speaks to us of the heart of God." - Stasi
I don't know why, all my life I have desired to be delicate, to be a lady, I wanted to rebel against feminism. Yet society is telling me to be otherwise, they're telling me to be macho and tough like a man. This isn't what I want for myself! God created men to be the stern ones, and women to be the kind and compassionate ones and this is what I want for my life. Not a helpless women who can't do anything for herself, but soft in spirit. I want Mary, the mother of Jesus, to be my example! I want to be like her.
This book is going to be quite the journey for me and I know that I won't come out the other side as the same person I am now. The way I'm thinking is going to change pretty drastically, and I welcome that with open arms!