This is the second week featuring a reflection on recent sermons on biblical manhood and womanhood from members of our college staff. Click here to read the first post, “A Reflection on Manhood.”
I was raised to believe that I could do whatever I set my mind to. Growing up, I found my identity in my intelligence. I excelled in academics so that became where I found my security. I was never the prettiest or most popular or most athletic of all the girls, so I hid behind an intellectual facade, which over the years bred deep insecurity.
Fast Forward to College
When I moved into my dorm at UNC freshman year, I brought not only my belongings but also a suitcase full of lies. At this point, I didn’t love Jesus. I knew a lot of things about the gospel, but it had not changed my heart. The lie “I’m not good enough” shackled my heart. I had a deep longing to be known—a longing that could only be filled by Christ. As a freshman, the Lord began to break down barriers in my life to show me that I will never be good enough—I will never be perfect—but there is one who is perfect. Christ’s perfection covers me so that I can be deeply known.
I had no grasp of what biblical womanhood actually was. Being a woman had always been presented as some special, flowery retreat with a watered-down version of the gospel. Even women’s retreats became a place that bred comparison within me. I began to believe the lie that “my struggle isn’t important” and continued to hide. I was in community, but I wasn’t known. I fully believed that I was a burden; that I could carry other people’s burdens, but I wasn’t worthy to have anyone carry mine.
Without knowing it, I was missing one of the most beautiful aspects of the Christian walk: being fully known and loved in community. I was held back by my intellect and preconceived notion that my struggles were not worth anyone’s time.
Fast forward to the Present Day
I’ve graduated from college. I lived overseas. I transitioned back from living abroad and began a career in Greensboro. And through it all, I fell more in love with Jesus. I ache for the day my citizenship in heaven is fully realized and there is no more comparison or distorted identities. And while I am not married, I am certainly not walking through this life alone. I walk with a community of strong men and women who know me and continually push me to the truth. I’ve invited these people into my life so that I may love Jesus better. There are millions of people that face death without a heavenly marriage. May we focus on our heavenly marriage and respond in urgency to tell others.
College women, hear this: You are not a burden.
“Strength and dignity are her clothing, and she laughs at the time to come. She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.” (Proverbs 31:25-26)
The Proverbs 31 woman laughs at what is to come because she is not worried about it. We shouldn’t read this and be discouraged that we won’t ever measure up. Jesus died and took on our failure and shame. He can take it because he already has. This truth should push us to dive deeper into the gospel because it is wisdom and encouragement. Do not settle for a watered-down version to the gospel.
The mercy of God covers your past. He already knows you and loves you. He doesn’t want you to stay where you are. If you’re not in a family group or a freshman bible study—go sign up right now. This is your first step to community. We see Christ’s love tangibly when we enter into community and allow our brothers and sisters to walk alongside us.
For women who are in Christ, this is our encouragement. Daughter, behold your King. You are sister to the believers around you. You are who he says that you are. You are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14).
-Amy Overton (College Team)