Saturday, August 07, 2010

No More Christian Nice Girl

A week ago I was enjoying the best camping trip ever! My family, my mom, stepdad, and brother all went up for our annual trip to Shaky Lakes in Stephenson, Michigan. We reserved a new site this year, two all the way at the end of a peninsula, so we were surrounded on three sides by water and had plenty of privacy. This year we finally figured out the best way to cook and every meal was awesome. I ate better there than we often do at home. Plus, we didn't worry about a schedule and just enjoyed the day as it came, eating when hungry, swimming or fishing when the desire hit. Most of the time I had no idea what time it was, and I even turned my cell phone off. We all look forward each summer to this trip as the pinnacle of our vacation, and this year truly lived up to expectations. I wish we could go back up again. Over the next few weeks, I'll be posting some of my favorite pictures of the trip, including our visit to the DeYoung Family Zoo in Wallace.

No More Christian Nice Girl by Paul Coughlin & Jennifer D. Degler is the companion volume to No More Christian Nice Guy for men. Christian girls and women are raised to always be kind, quiet, and modest. There is an expectation that they never show anger or strong emotion, because they are supposed to be perfect. The authors explain that the perfect woman is occasionally angry, and that while we are to model our lives on Jesus', he wasn't always nice. Jesus was often angry and spoke harsh words to people, but only when they had it coming. Coughlin and Degler use Jesus' life on earth as their model for women to speak up for themselves, stop swallowing their angry and avoiding conflict and becoming doormats. I read a lot of devotionals over the course of a year, and while they are often encouraging, it is the rare book that actually inspires me to begin changing me life AND leaves a lasting impact long after I've finished reading it. Just like many Christian women, I have kept quiet when my feelings were hurt, took on co-worker's workloads to "help" out, said yes when I really meant no, and allowed people to walk all over me in order to avoid hurting someone's feelings, all because I wanted to be a good Christian woman. What I discovered in this book is that I haven't been a good Christian woman at all. A good Christian woman allows others to take responsibility for their own actions and addresses the issue when someone hurts them, even if it does create conflict. Jesus didn't avoid speaking the truth to the Pharisees to keep from hurting their feelings, and neither should we! A quiz is included that will help readers determine what areas of their life they are too nice in, and chapters are broken up into sections like work, family, marriage, and even sex for easy reference. It's written with a lightly humorous touch to keep it from becoming too heavy, and is endlessly encouraging. Since reading it, I've been making a lot of changes in my life in how I interact with people and I anticipate that will truly bring about long-term change. I also plan on passing it on to a few women in my life who I know need it just as much I as do!

Thank you to Bethany House Publishing for providing me with a copy of this book for review.

The top picture is my mom with Molly. The second one is Mom's dog Sophie; she LOVES catching bubbles!


Christian Romance said...

She is really beautiful.