Monday, April 28, 2008

Captivating, Chapter 1

I am currently reading and reviewing the book Captivating, by John and Stasi Eldredge. Each Monday morning I am posting my thoughts on a chapter. This week is chapter one...

The Heart of a Woman

This chapter was a little difficult for me to get through. To be honest, I was not really looking forward to working through any issues this book might bring up. I found myself starting and stopping a lot until I came to this paragraph...

"I am not enough and too much at the same time. Not pretty enough, not thin enough, not kind enough… But too emotional, too needy, too opinionated… The result is Shame, the universal companion of woman. It haunts us…” (pg. 7)

How true that is for me! Do you know what a huge sigh of relief I gave in finding that someone else had put into words the crazy feelings I have been having? This passage alone hooked me on this book. I realized that I needed to take a hard look at what my idea of being a woman was. I needed to tweak my thoughts about true beauty.

This chapter also serves as an introduction for the main theme of the book; the 3 things most women long for in their heart of hearts. Here they are, with a quote from each section that captured my attention;

To be romanced:
The book quotes a line from the movie The Last of the Mohican's, “I will find you. No matter how long it takes, no matter how far- I will find you.”

My heart resonated with this so deeply. It was as if my “mail” was being read.

To play an irreplaceable role in a great adventure.
“There is something fierce in the heart of a woman. Simply insult her children, her man, or her best friend and you’ll get a taste of it. A woman is a warrior too. But she is meant to be a warrior in a uniquely feminine way.” (pg. 11)

I loved this. I am not a “sit back and watch” kind of girl. The idea of being dainty and soft is foreign to me. I love that the warrior side of woman is acknowledged in such a balanced way. Warrior, yet feminine. Perfect!

To unveil beauty.
On page 16 this sums it all up, “In spite of all the pain and distress that beauty has caused us as women, the desire remains… A desire to be captivating in the depths of who you are.”

That’s what I long for. This hit home.

After reading the chapter (I made it through unscathed) I turned to the “Guided Journal” where I realized I wasn’t going to get away so easily. The authors asked some really tough questions. The kind of questions that made my mind wander down dark paths full of cobwebs and spooky shadows. Guess it’s time to turn on the lights and clean house.

In closing, I will leave you with a few of those questions to ponder yourself… and feel free to share any insight or questions they might bring up.

  • What expectations have been laid upon you, as a woman? What do you feel the pressure to be?
  • What have you been taught that a mature, godly woman should look like?
  • Do you feel like you know what it means to be a true woman? Do you feel like you are?
  • Who in your life is beautiful to you? Why?

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