I love to read, especially when a book moves me. A few years ago, I was browsing our local used book store when I came across a copy of Wild at Heart by John Eldredge. Even though this book was written for men, I read it. I got a kick out of some of his descriptions of the male personality, thinking of my boyfriend (now husband), brother or dad. It also gave me wonderful perspective on who God created my husband to be and I longed to read a comparable book written for women.
So, I was thrilled this past Christmas to open a gift from my husband and find the book,Captivating, by John and Stasi Eldredge. Written for women (maybe specifically for me) this book has opened my heart to what God had in mind when he made me.
I've been reading it slowly, trying to soak it all in. In an effort to make the most of this book, I'll be journaling here each week, by chapter, the thoughts that stand out to me. If you don't already own this book, order a copy today and read along with me.
Chapter 1 - The Heart of a Woman
*words in italics are direct quotes from the book
Every woman I've ever met feels it... "I am not enough", and "I am too much" at the same time. Not pretty enough, not thin enough, not kind enough, not gracious enough, not disciplined enough. But too emotional, too needy, too sensitive, too strong, too opinionated, too messy... We feel unseen... unsought... uncertain. (pg 7)
Wow. This is tough to digest, because it's so true of how I feel and how I've felt. And yet, I know it's not right. God did not make me a woman to be striving. Striving is not living. And in all of my striving, I seem to fall further from God's design. God calls me to find rest in Him (Matthew 11:28-30).
A few years ago, Eric introduced me to Tom Petty, by way of a song "Wildflower". By the final chorus, I had silent tears streaming down my face. I felt so connected to the lyrics and could hardly explain to Eric why I found the song so beautiful. John and Stasi list a few lines in the opening of this chapter:
You belong among the wildflowers
You belong in a boat out at sea
You belong with your love on your arm
You belong somewhere you feel free
-Tom Petty (pg 1)
Listen to a sample and read the full lyrics here. What does this song mean to you?
Aren't we all longing for something more? To be a woman full of passion and life? To feel free to be all that God created us to be?
Every woman in her heart of hearts longs for three things: to be romanced, to play an irreplaceable role in a great adventure and to unveil beauty. That's what makes a woman come alive. (pg 8)