Here are a few questions a journalist recently posed to us, with our answers.
Interviewer: When and how did you start your blog? What role did you think you needed to fill with it, what purpose does it serve?
A&E: We began “Visionary Daughters” three years ago, upon finishing our book So Much More, as a way to inspire and encourage other young women to think and live biblically. We want to see young women break free from the smothering expectations of society, to be visionary, to think outside the box, to educate themselves more widely, and to focus on constructive family relationships. We want girls to have an attitude of victory, rather than survival, and to understand the glory and vastness of the role God created for unmarried women.
We see a particular need for girls to build better relationships with their fathers, as the effects of this relationship spill over into so many other areas of their lives — they way they view God, the way they relate to men, the way they view themselves, the decisions they make regarding family, and more. In our generation, we are seeing a fundamental disconnect between fathers and children, and daughters are suffering from this lack of fatherly guidance, involvement, affection, affirmation, and protection. We’ve also seen committed daughters win the hearts of their indifferent fathers and build a wonderful relationship that transformed the entire family. In Malachi 4:6, the Bible instructs us in the importance of “turn[ing] the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers,” and that is one of the greatest goals of our ministry.
Interviewer: Who exactly are you trying to reach?
A&E: Although we’ve received overwhelming feedback from almost every demographic — young and elderly, men and women alike — our audience has always been other young women in the same stage of life as we (single). These women come from all different backgrounds, financial situations, and nationalities, but we are united in our commitment to being biblically faithful, intellectually honest, and consistent.
For those who have heard about “stay-at-home” daughterhood and are curious, we want to give an open, honest picture of how we believe and live.
Interviewer: Do you agree with other Christians who say devout, Christian womanhood and feminism are not mutually exclusive? Do you consider yourselves feminists?
A&E: Some define feminism as the belief that women have rights. We absolutely agree that women have rights — we also recognize that all rights must be bestowed by some Higher Source. Feminism is not the source of our rights — God is the author of our rights, as our founders recognized, and it was He who gave women property rights, marital rights, and divorce rights (for example), as well as laws that protect women from abuse and neglect. The feminist movement declared woman able to author her own, new rights — to be like God, determining right and wrong for herself. We stand for men’s and women’s original, biblical rights — we stand against the selfish autonomy of either.
Some define feminism as the belief that women and men are of equal value. We believe they are also. The Bible declares men’s and women’s equal standing and value before God, and teaches this more consistently than any other religious or secular doctrine. In Scripture, man’s work and woman’s work are equally valid — wifehood, motherhood, homemaking and femininity are not belittled, and women are not guilt-manipulated to live and act like men. On the contrary; woman’s distinctiveness from man is praised and honored, and her unique role is held vital.
Speaking historically as well as theologically, Christianity is the only social, spiritual and political force that gives women true freedom and power. It is the anti-Christian religions (including Marxism, Islam, and feminism) that demean, undervalue, and exploit women; throughout history, it was the Christian societies that truly valued women, protected women and honored women (insofar as those societies were faithful to the Bible’s actual teachings).
One major antithesis between us and the feminists is their insistence on egalitarianism. God is a God of order, not of anarchy, and He created spheres of sovereignty and hierarchies of authority. Thus we would define feminism as rebellion against God and His created order; a pursuit of autonomy; a fight for the right to get our own way. This is why we see feminism and Christian womanhood as mutually exclusive, and “Christian” feminism as an oxymoron.
More questions and answers coming up soon…