Eve: The Nature of Womankind & Life-Giving Mother [Women of the Word Series: 1]

Women of the Word Series: 1

Introduction:

Let’s go back to the beginning, where did we come from? Where did as we as WOMEN come from? We see in the world and society today, women standing up everywhere raising their voices for something they believe in. Women, who are we? What do we stand for? But more importantly, WHO do you belong to? I don’t care what political party, agenda, belief of left or right, I just want women everywhere regardless of their background to know that before anything or anyone else YOU ARE A DAUGHTER OF THE KING! That’s why we are going back to basics. The origin of humanity is simple, to say the least: mankind (Adam) came from dust, womankind (Eve) came from his rib. But yet, as simple as it sounds it is also complex and intricate in detail. The human body is made up of cells, fibers, tendons, ligaments, bones, muscles, tissues, organs, blood, and organs. We can taste, smell, see, hear, touch and feel. Each part of the body functions separately but works together as one. We were created to move, breathe, walk and talk; but so much more we were created to live, think, have emotions and feelings, to love, to be all that He made us to be, and to have a relationship with Him. Humans are unlike any other creation of God’s; we are His masterpieces. Let’s go back to Eden…

Perspective:

{Portion told from Adam’s perspective} “The moment I felt the breath of Life, come into my lungs I felt such a powerful awakening purpose. I was dust and dirt. Then suddenly every fiber in my being came to life by the One who created me. I knew to think, to feel, and I knew Him instantly. He gave me the most beautiful home to live and take care of. All of the plants and animals, I was given to name and take stewardship of. But yet, although I knew and loved my Creator; something was missing. He knew and I knew. I remember Him saying *“It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.” Then all I remember is feeling at peace, and falling into a deep sleep. When I woke up, I couldn’t believe what a beautiful gift I’d been blessed with…” She was beautiful beyond words, **”This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.” I called her by name, ***Eve…the mother of all living. And my Eve; she was made for me and she was and is the woman of my dreams… (*Gen. 2:18, **Gen. 2:23, ***Gen. 3:20)

So let’s take a moment to pretend we are taking our very first breath as the first woman created: “Mrs. Eve”.

Her Story:

{Told from Eve’s perspective} “I was crafted and molded from him, my beloved. From his bone, I became flesh. Not from his head to be above him or superior, not from his heel to be walked over or inferior, but right by his side-a rib, under his loving, strong arms to be protected and held, but close to his heart to be loved. We are equal; we are fully made and sculpted by our Creator. I felt the Giver, the breath from Him bring an invigorating, life-giving passion and purpose. It was a surreal feeling, because immediately I knew who I was because He created me, and I had a purpose. Every cell and fiber in my being came to life by one single breath from God; the same way my husband , my Adam was made. We were and are crafted to be like Him, in His image. I couldn’t believe my eyes when I looked at the beauty of my home, Eden was literally paradise. Made just for me and my beloved husband to live, to grow, and raise our family one day…but even more beautiful was the idea that we could walk and talk with our Creator. I was made to be a helpmate and companion of my husband; he is the head of our home, the leader and keeper of my heart. I am his and he is mine. I heard Adam’s love in his voice when he said, *”This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.”* He was talking about me, the love of his life.

One day, I was just strolling through the garden admiring the beauty that God created; Adam was strolling not too far behind. Then, along came slithering a snake through the grass and up the tree that I was standing by; the most beautiful tree in the garden. This tree wasn’t just any tree; it was the Tree of Life…the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. God said to never eat of this tree, or Adam and I would die. Die? The fruit of this tree was not poisonous, it was forbidden. If we ate from it, we would know the difference between good and evil? I know what is good; everything around me in this beautiful place was good! It was beautiful, God made it! But what is evil? I’d never heard of or experienced, let alone seen such a thing. Could evil be that bad? Will it hurt me and my husband? Then this snake started talking to me, saying some interesting things, “Did God really tell you that you couldn’t eat from this tree?” I thought about it: It was a command, it was dangerous. But then, that sneaky serpent said “You would know everything and be like God.” Well, what was I missing? If we were made in God’s image, are we supposed to be like Him? I’m not sure that’s what God wants, but my curiosity got the best of me I tried the fruit from the tree. Immediately I saw everything differently, I was naked. I was vulnerable. I was confused. What just happened? Did I do something wrong? Something didn’t feel right. Everything didn’t seem quite as beautiful as before, it was tainted. Adam then ate of the fruit to see what was happening. Immediately he felt the same way I did. He was naked too. We were both confused and vulnerable. We went to make clothes from leaves. God saw that we were confused and trying to cover our shame. He knew what happened. The most cunning creature of all had found the upper hand. I was so ashamed. I was scared. I now knew what evil was, I met it face to face that day….

Her Hope:

Adam and Eve were created from the dust of the earth, by the hand of God. They lived in pure paradise, full of laughter and filled with light and joy. They were with their Creator. No discontent, no dysfunction, no discord or corruption. No shadows or fear. However, that joy was sharply diminished. Order gave way to chaos. Harmony gave way to discord. Craving and yearning to know more, created a hunger pang of deep despair and misery that could never be satisfied. Sin drove a wedge in the relationship between God and humankind. Sin planted seeds of confusion. Sin had bitten a piece of their mind and heart, just as they bit into the forbidden fruit.

Despair and hope are total opposites, they can’t really coexist much like peace and fear. But out of one springs forth the other…hope springs from despair. Her sorrow was deep. Her guilt was deeper. God knew exactly what happened and whom was to blame. Revenge belongs to the Lord. Scripture says in Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Sin came with a high price: death. But life is still full of hope hinged on a specific and prophetic promise found in Genesis 3:15, “I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring ; He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel.” Let’s expand on the two surrounding verses 14 & 16. To the serpent, God said “Because you have done this, cursed are you above all livestock and above all beasts of the field; on your belly you shall go, and dust you shall eat all the days of your life.” (v.14) and to Eve, the woman He said “I will surely multiply your pain in childbearing; in pain you shall bring forth children. Your desire shall be for your husband, and He shall rule over you.” Eve’s decision affected others besides herself. (Thanks Eve for mother nature’s visit and childbirth pain!) Any woman who is a mother, you know that childbirth is the most painful thing you will endure. But, out of pain comes the beauty of new birth. Adam wasn’t left out either, God said to him “Because you have listened to the voice of your wife and have eaten of the tree of which I commanded you, You shall not eat of it, cursed is the ground because of you; in pain you shall eat of it all the days of your life; thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you; and you shall eat the plants of the field. By the sweat of your face you shall eat bread till you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; for you are dust, and to dust you shall return.” Each character in this story in history were impacted, therefore impacting their children and the rest of us who long came after. Her hope came from Genesis 3:15 that one day the offspring of her children’s children-her ancestry would defeat this cunning serpent once and for all. Her life did go on. God still used her and her family.

Her Prayer:

Eve later on experienced the pain of childbirth and joy of motherhood. They had two sons Cain and Abel. Sadly, we know how the pain of sin affected their family…jealously crept in just like the serpent had before; Cain murdered his brother Abel. I can’t imagine a mother’s heartbreak and grief. Later on her and Adam had Seth, and many other sons and daughters as scripture says. Eve was called the mother of all living. She was the first of many. She birthed humanity into flesh and bone. She was the first woman, therefore she experienced every emotion we face as women. She felt beautiful and alive, full of joy and awestruck wonder. She felt curiosity which led to the life-altering decision, then shame and guilt quickly followed. She was the one who cried the first tears, and yet God still collected them in a bottle, wiped her cheek and called her His own. She felt sorrow, after being deceived. She experienced self-doubt and humiliation. She experienced repentance and forgiveness. She was able to laugh and smile, love life again with her husband. She experienced grief, motherhood struggles, worry, and being a “boy mom”. She experienced life. I imagine she told Adam how she felt from time to time. I imagined she prayed to God through all of her emotions, through laughter and tears. A woman who loved her husband and children. She took pride in exactly who God created her to be A woman who made a mistake but was and is still God’s beloved daughter. Her purpose was not overshadowed by that huge world-changing decision although it tells her story, it’s not her whole life.

Prayer & Reflection

Lord, my Father and Creator. The One who gave me life. Thank You for bringing into the world You created, for handcrafting my body, heart, mind and soul just as You did Eve. Thank for forgiveness and not allowing my mistakes and sins, to define my whole life and write my entire story and purpose because You already created my purpose. Thank You for grace and mercy. In the face of many emotions we face as women, God You created us to think, know, and feel every emotion with every fiber of our being. As women, You created us emotional by nature. We feel, and love and get upset, and cry, and sometimes doubt ourselves, and yet we nurture and care and help husbands and raise children to love You. Help us, help me Daddy to know that above all else I am Your daughter. Amen.

Questions:

1. Imagine if you were Eve, opening your eyes for the first time, drawing your first breath. The first thing you saw was your Creator and then the one who you were created for, your husband? Look around at the beautiful place you get to call home, Eden. What words and emotions would you use to describe everything?

2. The serpent told Eve, God just doesn’t want you to know everything, He’s keeping good things from you and Adam. Just eat the fruit and find out what you’re missing. What lies about yourself or about God’s truth has Satan led you to believe in your life?

3. Read Genesis 1:26-28 along Genesis 2:18-24. We are ALL made in His image, man and woman. Man was made in His image and woman made after man’s image. We are equal. But woman was created to be a helpmate and companion to man. Adam said she is bone of my bone and flesh of flesh. Basically, she’s mine and I’m hers…and together we’re His! This passage affects the basis on how each human being treats another (in his image), and the basis and foundation of marriage. How do these verses compare to our society and world today? Has society forgotten those values?

4. Think about the last paragraph “Her Prayer” talking about emotions and being a woman, as well as how Eve’s life-altering decision affected but did not define her life and purpose. How’s can you apply that to your own life?

I encourage you ladies to not only read this, but follow along in your Bible, reflect on the questions, comment and share! I would love for this to be an interactive series!

-With love, Heather

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Women of the Word: A Series of Women of the Bible and Their Stories

Have you ever wondered how it must have felt to be woman or girl living in Biblical times? Society and the world in general were much different. Customs and cultures were different. Family, your work, and your faith meant everything; much like it does today. Women however weren’t mentioned as much in ancestry and genealogy throughout the Bible because names and inheritance were passed down through fathers to sons. Women’s opinions and leadership weren’t discussed near as much, but that doesn’t mean that they didn’t have a voice or leadership. There are many women in the Bible mentioned by name for their role they play in important, life-changing, historical events in the Bible. After all, without mothers who gave birth how would any of us be here?

Too many times throughout history, there’s a common misconception of the past that women were “to be seen and not heard”. In my humble opinion, I’ve seen numerous stories of women in the Bible and throughout the course of history worldwide that have challenged that stigma and rumor because they were called by God to make a change someway somehow. So we are going to take a little journey back through time and into the hearts and minds of women and girls who walked those same dusty roads that Jesus did. The women who walked, talked, and did life together with their husbands like Adam, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob-just to name a few! Scripture itself says God created woman to be a helpmate to man; neither inferior nor superior. Genesis 2:18 says “Then the Lord God said, ‘It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.” Ladies, we were handcrafted carefully and uniquely by God. He doesn’t make mistakes; He saw that everything He made was good. He makes beautiful things, with beautiful purposes. So in this next series we are going to explore the depths of each of these women’s hearts. To walk in her shoes, or sandals so to speak. To feel what she felt. To know her story, not just her name.

Each devotional narrative will include an introduction to the chapter/book of the Bible, such as the setting, cultural context, and character as well as characteristics and virtues in her (or that describe her), perspective-telling her story from her own point of view-her hopes, her dreams, her fears, her struggles, her lessons learned, and most importantly her faith. Each section will highlight three aspects: Her Hope, Her Story, Her Prayer, and reflection/prayer with reflection questions, Scripture based guided prayer points just for you! Get ready to dig into the Word through the eyes and hearts of women who lived it!

MARK YOUR CALENDARS: JANUARY 2017, WE BEGIN OUR SERIES!

-Your Sister in Christ,
Heather

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The Truth About Mean Girls by Heather H.

84eded1c892eb4864d669211da47b0aaThe Truth about Mean Girls

The popular 2004 movie, “Mean Girls” gave everyone an inside scoop on what it’s like to be a high school girl. Although a lot of the movie was exaggerated for laughs, a lot of it can be true. Girls can be vicious, admit it. We’ve all had our heart broken by a boy probably at least once in our life, or been picked on by a guy (that’s their way of “flirting”) but let’s face it no many how tears you’ve shed of a silly boy the wounds from our fellow females can hurt worse. Why do we do that, huh ladies? Is there a reason, logic or science behind our motives? First things first, bullying is not cool. We know that girls and guys are definitely wired differently in the way we think and interact with others. We know that guys loves a healthy dose of competition to stroke their ego a little bit, but guys don’t hold on to grudges like girls do. Sometimes I’d actually rather hang out with my brothers and guy friends than some girls because the fellas are less dramatic! I love my girlfriends though! Guys will throw a few punches maybe and have a few words, then be friends again five minutes later and be all like “hey bro, I’m sorry man”. Girls on the other hand, we can be very competitive as well, but usually do not show it until that green-eyed monster comes lurking up and sneaks out of us, not quite as loudly and angrily as The Hulk, but more manipulative and cunning…you guessed it, the green-eyed monster called JEALOUSLY.

In last week’s article, I talked about body image, self-esteem and the media trend of “body shaming”. Since when did it become okay to slam someone or shame someone because of their size? We, as ladies are constantly comparing ourselves to each other! I’m just as guilty, I’m only human too my sister! Sometimes it can be comparing our weight or clothing size as we already mentioned. Sometimes, (for any of my elementary and middle school girls) it could be that little girl that sits next to us in class who has the cutest new Disney Princess or Lilly Pulitzer notebook and book bag to match and we just have plain ole wide-ruled spiral bound notebooks and a hand me down book bag and last year’s outfit while she’s sporting a new wardrobe. Or it could be that head cheerleader who’s so popular that every guy wants to date, and your crush just asked her to prom instead of even glancing in your direction. Even grown-ups deal with the same thing, the woman in the cubicle next to you-your “work bestie” got the promotion and you didn’t. Or someone is getting more hours than you while your shifts get cut back. What about the new girl who is “stealing” your friends? (Let’s be honest, she’s not “stealing your friends” she’s just trying to make friends, including YOU!) Or let’s get real, you see some girl supposedly flirting with your man! Oh no she didn’t! Ladies we all face real life situations of petty jealously! But what about the words some girls same that cut us to the core, or when your best friend lets you down, or worse…stabs you in the back? Girls don’t throw punches and fight it out like boys do, girls use words and gossip and manipulation…also the worst tactic making someone feel left out.

The question is WHY?! Girls this is not all fun and games. Words hurt, the Bible even speaks of it in James 3 saying that the tongue is hard to tame. Instead of getting jealous, or feeling better than or less than one of your sisters in Christ, celebrate each other! Instead of trying always “one up” each other, why not help each other up? Each of us face a lot of the same things, sometimes you just need another woman whether older and wiser or a girlfriend your age to share and talk with. We are all in this together ladies! We are royal daughters, not jealous nasty monsters who thrive on manipulation! Whatever things are honest and noble, full of virtue-think on these and do these things! (Philippians 4:8, Proverbs 31). One of the most important things I can leave you with is, if you have been hurt by mean girls or bullied in the past…or maybe you were or are that “mean girl”…the bottom line is grace and forgiveness. Forgive those who have hurt you, and reach out to those you have hurt…show grace to yourself and others. Love each other by lifting each other up.
-Your sister in Christ, Heather