Monday, August 15, 2016

Femininity vs. Feminism: Explained

Hi, everyone!

     How has your summer been? I feel like I've barely talked to any of you over these past few months!! I miss our heart-to-hearts!! Today, I just want to get something out there that has been on my heart for almost a year now, but I never could think of a good angle to take with it. Let's just take this time to pour our hearts onto the table and be honest with each other, and with ourselves, shall we?

     Well... in the process of being a blogger + writing a lot + having to explain what I write about + having to explain who I am, I ended up falling into the deep end of labels. It was kind of a panic/claw for the surface/I can't breathe moment when I realized that to be a real-deal blogger, I was going to have to box myself in. I was supposed to find one niche, and be able to communicate said niche so the people that belonged to my blog would find me.

     Why did this scare me?, you might be wondering. Well, it probably goes back to the fact that I've always been kind of peculiar. Titling my personal blog with that exact adjective was even my idea. I'm super unique and odd and set-apart, and not only am I okay with that, but I love it!! But now I have a blog. So I can only be like five adjectives. I can only have like three hobbies, and one of them should be photography. Boxed in.

     In the semi-organized chaos of it all, I've not only learned several new descriptive phrasing techniques, but I've also discovered who I am. Not that it wasn't always there; I just know how to communicate it to everybody else, now. Included in my extra-large box with about a bazillion other little things that make me who I am, I now feel comfortable proclaiming:

     I am a feminine anti-feminist.

     Wait. Did you just catch that? Yeah, that's what I thought. You might need to read it twice.

     ... feminine anti-feminist? What on earth?

     I can see your gears turning.

     But it's true!!

     Care to dig into the why with me?

Femininity: The quality of being female; womanliness.¹

     God made me a woman. A female. Distinctly not man. God created two genders in the beginning of time, and those are the only two still in existence today.

     I'm honored that God created me at all, and doubly honored to be female!

     Story time... I know I've mentioned a few times that I haven't always been strictly a skirts and dresses girl. In fact, there was an entire season (a year or two) of my childhood when I really detested skirts. And dresses. And pink.

     Obviously, God has worked on me since then. I now manage a modest fashion blog with a pink header. While it's true that it took a while for my heart to be completely turned towards the attire I now feel most comfortable/modest/feminine in, that entire process was jumpstarted in one shopping trip.

     I remember the whole day very clearly. I was 11 years old and we lived in Missouri. My dad was off for the weekend. Belk's was having a big sale. We were going to check it out. I was wearing blue jeans (yes, gasp, indeed), and probably a t-shirt, but it was cold and there was still snow on the ground, so I wore one of my favorite jackets, a bright orange thing with rainbow sleeve cuffs and collar. Probably tennis shoes (or maybe Heelys; who remembers that fad?). My hair up in a ponytail, and a baseball cap, which is not unusual for me, even today. Maybe some silly bands. Yep. I was that kid.

     My mom bought my Easter dress at Belk's that day. Long story short, the cashier, a nice older lady, possibly going blind, thought I was a boy. It changed my life. Probably for the better, but still. She called me a "young man" and didn't catch my mom's gentle correction, and proceeded to feel sorry for me, one boy with all those little sisters. My mom really turned red, and corrected a bit more clearly. The lady apologized to me. She said the baseball cap must have confused her.

     I'm not bitter. In fact, wherever you are, thank you, ma'am! That one incident made me stop and think about what I was wearing. Not because looking like a boy makes me less of a female, but because I am thankful and honored to be the gender God chose for me, and I want to be distinctly set-apart both as His and as He made me!

     I know I've said this before, too, but pants can totally be modest. They just can, okay? But that's only half of my mission, here.

     Covered and modest, yes, but also distinctly feminine, as God created me to be!

     And the world-wide symbol for female restrooms is not a girl in a dress just by coincidence.

     If you're on the fence about the issue, please stop worrying about convenience or others' judgments. When you have a conviction on your heart to just try to honor God even more, in another area of your life, He will give you immeasurable grace to handle the few obstacles that might be in your way. We're here for you!

Feminism: The advocacy of women's rights on the grounds of political, social, and economic equality to men.¹

     I am not a feminist. I think most people view the whole "feminist" thing as Mrs. Banks parading around with 'Votes for Women' signs. Or is that just me?

     As far as voting is concerned, because it is my right to vote, I vote. In fact, for anybody that is a United States citizen (legally, I'm talking about, mind you), I encourage you to educate yourself and vote! It's the least you can do after all of those soldiers gave their lives just to secure you said right!

     But, I'm no feminist.

     "The advocacy of women's... equality to men."

     That's where you lose me. Because, while I don't advocate the "doormat philosophy", where women get stomped around on and traded like livestock, I don't support the idea of equality, or especially superiority, either. But who cares what I think? What does God say?

     Why did God make women?

And the LORD God said, [It is] not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help[,] meet for him.
-Genesis 2:18

     In this verse, above, we see why God made women: only for the cause of helping and being a companion to man! Not for bossing him around, advising him on his next career move, or nosing around in his bank account. Helping. Because it wasn't good that he should be alone.

   And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man. And Adam said, This [is] now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.
-Genesis 2:22-23

     Women were made from man! Isn't that amazing?! Also, she was made from his rib. We all know where those are located, right? She wasn't made from the soles of his feet, that he should always be above her, nor was she made from his temple, that she should be a head over him, but she was made from his rib, that she might walk along side him. (Notice how that's different than running ahead of him in educational and career pursuits, and also quite different compared to trudging along behind him as a slave.)

     Genesis 2, then, tells us quite clearly the entire purpose God made our gender! To be a help and companion, as we walk by his side.

     That wasn't too bad, was it?

     One more thing.

     As we've now looked at the purpose and origin of woman-kind, and seen that she is in some ways inferior, I want to remind you all that in God's eyes we are equal, and all have equal portions of His love. (Galatians 3:28)

     And also:

But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman [is] the man; and the head of Christ [is] God.
-1 Corinthians 11:3

     The ideas of modesty and such are sometimes grey within the Word of God, but this issue of feminism is black and white.

     We are not made to be the head of man. It is not our God-given position. And when we step outside of the boundaries (or "fence") God has put in place for us, we lose the protection He provides freely for those within the fence. And you don't know that there's a cliff on the other side of that fence until you're already careening over the edge towards the jagged rocks at the bottom. Stay safe. Stay within the fence. Follow the black and white principles God has set up to govern this mortal world with.

     Food for thought.

~ ~ ~

     Anyways! That's all I have for this post. I hope it's a blessing, encouragement, or edification to someone out there! I'm just trying to help; I'm just trying to shine a little truth in a world full of darkness.

     So. Are you a feminist? Or are you feminine? If you made it all the way to the end of this post without scanning over anything, not only should you know which you are, but you should also leave me a comment so I can thank you personally! My readers are my favorite people.

     Have a fantastic week, ladies!!



  1. Elizabeth WilliamsAugust 15, 2016 at 1:48 PM

    I've never been a tomboy, but ever since I've been really growing in my faith, I have come to LOVE being feminine! It's such an honor and a privilege!

    1. I admit that I used to be a tomboy. Rather reluctantly, but I do. And as much as I completely agree with you (now) about the honor and privilege of being wholly feminine, I think I appreciate it that much more because I discovered the conviction myself, through a deeper study of God's Word and a true desire to be set-apart as His. I think if I had been in a very strict family (dress-wise), I would have lost the meaning of the practice, and might never have found the meaning of a fruitful modest heart. Praise God for His all-perfect planning in the lives of His children!!

  2. This was great, Kimberly!! I was a full-fledged tomboy growing up and I still have problems with it still today....I'm naturally a very loud and boisterous and non-girly person, and I've definitely been trying to work on it! Well done!

  3. While I don't consider myself to be a today feminist I think you are wrong in your reasoning for not being one. From what I gathered you are not a feminist because you feel that it would make you greater then man. The scriptures you have never said that women can't be equal. They simple said that women was made from man and was made to be a companion to man. Why can't women give advice or help run a house? Also without the first feminist women wouldn't be able to vote.
    I think it is okay that you only wear skirts and dresses but you can be very feminine in pants and shorts just like you can be unfinine in skirts and dresses. It all depends on how you wear them.

    1. Hi there.

      Next time, I would greatly appreciate it if you'd read the entire post before you fire false presumptions which I already covered in the post, itself.

      I will quote myself from the post: "Feminism: The advocacy of women's rights on the grounds of political, social, and economic equality to men." - which means I don't want to place myself at the level designated for men in these social areas. " God's eyes we are equal, and all have equal portions of His love. (Galatians 3:28)" - which means I agree with you about God not holding one gender above another. And, finally, "I will make him an help[,] meet for him. -Genesis 2:18" - which says that I *do* believe a woman can and should help her husband run the house; I just disagree that she should be in charge, or, "wear the pants" in the family, if you will.

      As to voting, I said "As far as voting is concerned, because it is my right to vote, I vote." If it was not my died-for right to vote, I wouldn't, and I wouldn't make a fuss about it, either.

      I agree that it's all in the attitude and spirit in which you wear your clothes that makes them modest or not- this is one of the main points we emphasize her at Modest on Purpose. It all starts with the heart.

      However, this post is certainly not written in defense of my clothing habits- how shallow and self-insecure do you take me as?! This post was written for encouragement and edification for those young ladies out there who are interested or invested in becoming more modest (at the heart *and* in the outward fruit) for God's Glory and Christ's Kingdom. This is not a cult of pant-haters or men-worshipers; this is just us. Trying to shine a light in the wicked darkness of the world.

      I thank you for commenting, but as I already alluded to, most of the answers to your problems with the post were in the post. As much as I like comments, I more appreciate those who will read the post, and not take little details out of context.

      Have a great day!!

    2. I did read your article I was just looking for clarification. I still don't understand why in your eyes men and women can't be equal. If we are equal in gods eyes why can't we be equal in others eyes? If you marry and your husband passes will you move back home because you don't feel a women should run a household? I'm not trying to argue or start something I am merely just courious.

    3. Hi again, Lauren.

      I'm sorry for jumping to the conclusion of you not having read the post. That was unfair of me, and I hope you'll forgive me. It's not your fault that I didn't make myself as clear as I thought I did in my writings.

      Okay. We are equal in God's love and extension of Salvation, according to Galatians 3:18. But we are not to be our own head and only in special circumstances are we to be directly accountable to God, according to 1 Corinthians 11:3 (not that there aren't exceptions we can all mention, but it's not the designed order God wants for us). Notice that I'm not saying women aren't capable; I'm saying placing ourselves in leadership positions (esp. Spiritual leadership) over men is simply defying the order God has set for us.

      If my husband passed, I actually would strongly consider moving back under the leadership and protection of my Father's house. Not because I am incapable, but because I should be under the head of a man (husband or father), if at all possible, just as a Bible lines out for me. Does that make better sense? It's not really "what I feel is right", but what the Bible states is right, that I hold as my guidelines for life.

      Hope that helps! I've appreciated this exchange.

  4. Hi there! I love your enthusiasm about your blog! I know I'm a bit late to the post, but I can't help but wonder why you believe that women shouldn't hold leadership positions. You say that women should not get ahead of men, as that would defy God's plan for us. By "men", do you mean specific men, or the gender as a whole? Because if speaking about either, there would not be an accurate way to measure our (female's) way of "getting ahead" that you talk about. Also, I don't understand why anyone couldn't get ahead of anyone, regardless of gender.
    Additionally, I 100% agree with you on why the Bible should be followed, however I don't understand the way you follow it, and would greatly appreciate it if you could explain. The Bible was created in Biblical times (obviously��) which was very long ago. Back then, a patriarchy was established. The author of Genesis may have been a product of his times, following the patriarchy. Fast forward to you, quoting these lines directly. Who is to say that there is a "level dedicated to men" in social areas, or that you should follow it. I guess what I'm trying to say is that I don't understand why you quote these lines directly, without outside context, as the Bible had been translated from its original language, and it's possible that you are not understanding the Word fully by taking single quotes with no other evidence.
    Sorry if this sounded unclear or mean in any way! I don't mean to offend you or anything like that, I am merely curious about your beliefs. Thanks!!


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