What it means to be a woman

Heidi Charalambous

“Which Sex in the City character are you?”

“Which Pretty Little Liar are you?”

These are real quizzes you can take (or, like me, probably already have taken). Quizzes are fun, but if we’re looking to the women around us to tell us who we are, we’ll never discover who we were meant to be.

Made in God's Image

Womanhood is not defined in the examples we see on TV, but in the story of our creation. After making the heavens and the earth, Adam and all the animals, God looked around and said “It is not good for man to be alone. I will make a suitable helper for him” (Genesis 2:18). Don't miss this: Creation was not complete until God made women! God didn’t rest until after He made Eve, which means us ladies are essential and not just for childbearing (Genesis 1:31, Genesis 2:1-3).

At first, the idea of being a “helper” or “helpmate” seems as antiquated as not dating until after the debutante ball. But the word most Bibles translate as “helper” is ezer-kenegdo. Every other time this word appears in the Bible, it’s describing God coming through for us in a major way. In the book, Captivating, John and Stasi Eldredge, describe an ezer-kenegdo this way:

“[Ezer-kenegdo] means something far more powerful than just ‘helper’; it means ’lifesaver’ … Eve is a life giver; she is Adam's ally. It is to both of them that the charter for adventure is given. It will take both of them to sustain life. And they will both need to fight together.”

Women and men hold equal value and dignity in God's eyes. When God talks about women as helpers, He’s describing a strategic partner and fellow warrior — not a piece of eye candy.  

You Are Unique

God made each of us with different gifts and abilities, so each woman fulfills her calling as a helper/life-giver in her own special way.

Our individuality is a reflection of God’s totality. Like pieces of a puzzle, we were each specially made to show the world something special about God’s character. In a letter to the church in Rome, the apostle Paul describes our individuality like this:

“We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith; if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead, do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully” (Romans 12:6-8).

As long as we’re trying to fit a stereotype, we will never be comfortable in our own skin. Just like God is too awesome, too powerful to be labeled, we are so much more than the tomboy, the girly girl, the flirt, the brains. So do what God has made you to do and do it all out. That’s how we’ll discover it what means to be a woman.

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