Last year, during one of those miraculously divine appointments that only our great God can arrange, a beautiful, bright-eyed college student walked into my life. As I’ve gotten to know this young lady, I’ve discovered that God has blessed her with a multitude of gifts. She’s smart, sensitive and compassionate. She possesses a heart for God and other people. She has a mega-watt smile that can light up any sized room!
However, like so many young women who are struggling to survive their teenage years and transition into adulthood, she finds it difficult to acknowledge and celebrate the many positive qualities that others see in her. More often than not, she’s desperately trying to drown out a constant cacophony of negative voices inside her head. These voices lie to her, telling her terrible things like:
- You’re not good enough…
- You’re not pretty enough…
- You’re not talented enough…
- You’re not smart enough…
- You are not enough.
I’m intimately familiar with these voices. They erode our sense of self-confidence and self-worth by making us believe we will never measure up. They cause us to withdraw and isolate from our loved ones. They make us feel that we will never be loved and accepted for who we are.
Perhaps you and your daughters have heard these voices, too?
Getting us to unfavorably compare ourselves to others and draw false conclusions about who we are is one of Satan’s most powerful weapons, so it’s no wonder he works this tactic non-stop. He is the father of lies and comparison is his favorite strategy!
If he can distort our true identities in Christ, he can sideline us and make us ineffectual for God’s Kingdom!
But, here’s the good news. God has provided us with a way to spiritually fight back. As we pray, study God’s Word, and apply Holy Scripture to our lives, we can learn how to silence the voice of the enemy in our heads and walk with God in ever-increasing confidence, freedom and faith! And, we can walk alongside our girls and teach them to do the same.
Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free. – John 8:32
Let’s prepare for battle by using these particularly powerful passages from God’s Word to combat the ungodly voices we sometimes hear in our heads. Then, when we’re armed, let’s teach these verses to our daughters as well!
- For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. – Ephesians 2:10The enemy wants us to focus on our inadequacies by telling us that we are not good enough to do the things that God wants us to do, but Ephesians 2:10 tells us that God has already prepared and equipped us to do specific good works to advance His kingdom. We are God’s handiwork. Who God calls, He also equips and empowers.
- You are altogether beautiful, my darling; there is no flaw in you. – Song Of Solomon 4:7Our society places unrealistic, unachievable “beauty” standards on young girls and women by surrounding them with Barbie dolls and images of photo-shopped models from birth, but the Lord measures beauty by a different standard. He looks at our heart and our deeds (1 Samuel 16:7, 1 Timothy 2:9-10). He emphasizes the cultivation of our inner selves and the development of a quiet and gentle spirit (1 Peter 3:3-4). He sees the image of Himself reflected in us (Genesis 1:27) and declares us beautiful in His sight.
- Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. – 1 Peter 4:10The devil wants us to believe that we are not talented enough to serve God or make an impact in His kingdom, but the Bible says that God has gifted us to serve others in specific ways. It’s crucial that we use our gifts wisely because if we do not do the things that God has specifically called and uniquely equipped us to do, who will fill our shoes?
- I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. – Psalm 139:14Has anyone ever made you or your daughter feel like, no matter what you do, you will never measure up to their standards? Well, this verse takes our focus off of the hurtful people in our lives and diminishes the power of their harmful words by placing our attention on God! As we acknowledge the wondrous things that God has done and praise Him for His deeds, we begin to walk in God’s power and weaken the enemy’s hold over our lives.
- Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is — His good, pleasing and perfect will. – Romans 12:2The college student I’ve been meeting with is living proof that God’s Word never returns void (Isaiah 55:11)! As she faithfully battles against the voices in her head by applying biblical principles, God is bearing abundant fruit in her life. She’s more confident and open than she was a few months ago. She’s stepping outside of her comfort zone and signing up for activities she never would have dreamed of participating in before. She’s learning how to take chances and trust God for the outcomes!
Another way to help young women quell the negative voices in their heads is to reinforce Scripture through inspirational Christian books like Show Up For Your Life: What The Girl You’ll Be Tomorrow Wants You To Know About Today. Written by gifted writer, speaker, and worship leader Chrystal Evans Hurst, this book focuses on helping young women ages 13 and up stop worrying about the small stuff and start embracing who they are in God’s eyes.
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What positive, life-affirming message does your daughter need to hear? Can you think of a Bible verse you’d like to share that encapsulates these thoughts? Please share them with us as well!