7 Ways to Raise Godly and Strong Women
Women who are faithful to God live wisely in this world and use their skills and gifts to the glory of God and the benefit of others. Here are seven ways to raise girls to become godly and strong women.
1. Teach girls to love Christ and the truth.
What is the use of being strong if it’s not for a good purpose? We want our young women to be strong for the right reasons, to fight for the right things. Young girls should be encouraged then to learn the Scriptures and see the beauty of Christ as it shines forth in the word of God. Understanding the truth of the gospel and how it impacts their lives in wonderful and glorious ways is how they will stand firm when the world buffets them.
Girls must know deeply that their Savior loves them and cares for them and that Jesus is the most important person in the world. The word of God is the standard by which God’s children live and walk in this world; so, women must know what the truth is, and how that truth is beautiful and good. Young women must be encouraged to love the One who is the source of all truth, and in loving him they will be strong to live for him.
2. Encourage girls to use all their gifts.
God has made all girls in his own image. He has given them skills, gifts, and aptitudes. Explore with your daughters their gifts, and show them that God has given them these gifts so that they might use them to his glory and the good of others.
No skill is unimportant. Whether your daughter has tendencies toward medicine, art, agriculture, music, engineering, computers, mechanics, acting, organization, or managing skills, encourage her to grow in her skills wisely and to use them to glorify God and serve others.
3. Teach girls to pray.
One of the most important things to teach young girls is that their strength comes from resting and relying in the strength of their heavenly Father. We cannot live life in our own strength but are to rely upon God. But how do you rely upon someone you don’t know or speak to? An essential part of relying on God is cultivating a relationship with him through reading his word and prayer. In reading God’s word, we hear his promises to us, and in prayer we express the reality of who God is and share with him our needs and confess our failings. In so doing, we recognize that he is with us and that only through his help can we be strong.
The Psalms are a wonderful example of prayers for strength and comfort coming from King David who was a “man after God’s own heart.” In the Psalms we have a picture of David’s relationship with God, a relationship steeped in prayer. Through prayer we see David asking for strength, comfort, and protection; and all God’s people should follow David’s example, including young girls.
4. Encourage girls to try new and difficult things.
Girls can do a lot. Sometimes they need a push in the right direction. My mother was great at placing me in situations that were initially uncomfortable, but ended up being great times for learning and confidence boosting. While fathers and mothers need to protect their children, this doesn't mean always keeping them in situations in which they are always comfortable.
Eventually, girls need to introduce themselves to strangers, share their talents and gifts, and learn to explain their ideas for themselves. Encouraging girls to explore safe but new and difficult situations will help them build confidence in their abilities, get better at problem solving, and help teach them how to deal with the inevitable challenges in life.
5. Train girls to communicate.
Young women have many great ideas. However, the adage “a child should be seen and not heard” can have disastrous effects on young girls if taken too far. I have met with girls who lacked confidence in having a simple conversation. Parents should be actively drawing out their daughters and encouraging them to express their thoughts.
Not only is this a good way of getting to know your daughter and understand her, but it helps her formulate her thoughts out loud and learn how to express herself in a way others can understand. This training will help a girl have confidence in what she believes and why she believes it, and will give her confidence in expressing herself. Strong women need to know how to communicate effectively with others.
6. Encourage girls to read good books.
My mother would often say, “Readers lead, and leaders read.” Reading good books (classics, histories, biographies, good novels, etc.) expands a young woman’s understanding of the world around her and provides alternative ways at looking at the world for her to analyze.
Reading provides a way for a girl to learn more about the world and people without having to travel the globe. She will get insight in how people think. Reading good books opens up the wisdom of others for her to grow from and also reveals the folly of some, so she doesn’t fall into the same problems. Strong women have minds that understand people and situations and can analyze the best way of interacting with them.
7. Teach girls to analyze everything in light of the word of God.
Strong women are wise women of God. “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge” (Prov. 1:7). The world will throw all sorts of ideas and lifestyles at a young woman, but all these ideas must be seen through the lens of God’s word and the desire to honor her heavenly Father. Second Timothy 3:16-17 says,
All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.
If we want women to be equipped for the tasks God has for them and to survive the confusion of the world, it is vital that they learn as girls to question the ideas the world presents through the filter of Scripture. In standing on the word of God, girls will become godly and strong women.
Ayrian Yasar is associate editor for Beautiful Christian Life.
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