“As a man thinks in his heart, so he is.” Proverbs 23:7
“Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life.” Proverbs 4:23
Addressing Gender Questions with Faith
All through my early years, I wanted to be a boy. I never played with dolls, wore skirts, or liked the girly-girls. I traipsed through the woods with my grandpa, hunting for mushrooms, lizards, and adventure. Dragons fascinated me—I would rarely be caught without some sort of tail pinned onto my pants, or wings attached to my back. Even with the few girlfriends I had, our games of choice involved secret agents, explorers, or warring empires. Today, I have a second-degree black belt, high scores in shoot-em-up games, a love for science fiction and rock music, and a degree in computer science. What would culture say to that?
Most likely, the gender “experts” of our day would recommend that I be “transitioned” from a girl to a boy. After all, I clearly should have been born one—in fact, if you had asked me from age 4-10 if I wanted to be a boy, I probably would have said yes! But luckily for me, in my early years, such a question never crossed anyone’s minds. And today, I glory in my femininity, happily married to my husband.
But alas, the children of this day face confusion, a struggle with issues that should never even enter our minds as a viable possibility. I believe that we lost the battle as soon as we accepted the idea that people could be born the “wrong” gender. As we open this door, we start looking at situations much differently.
We watch 7-year-old Christie, stomping around the yard with wings and a tail claiming to be the dragon named “King Ghidora,” and instead of seeing her as a silly little girl playing a game, we now see her as a gender-confused girl stuck in the wrong body. The innocent game of pretend suddenly carries heavy significance. The parents’ hushed conversations, overheard by the little girl, strike her with confusion and anxiety.
Thoughts that should never be taken seriously now haunt her through her already-confusing teen years. And thus, we have the gender crisis we face today.
Moms, if you have a child who fits the description I gave of my younger self, fear not. Whatever you do, do not listen to the demonic voices of culture as they plant seeds of doubt in your heart. Your child is normal.
Little boys don’t have to play cowboys and Indians—they can do crafts and play “house” instead. Little girls don’t need dolls or makeup or dresses to be secure in their femininity. The greatest gift you can give them is acceptance and protection from the insidious lies about what their likes and dislikes “mean.”
Even if your child doesn’t fit the mold I’ve described here, I’m sure you can think of a place in your parenting where you struggle trusting God. Pray and ask God to show you these areas and write them in your journal. Then write down 5 of your child’s strengths and pray for God to help you to encourage these qualities in your child.
Remember that your words to your children carry incredible power–they will internalize the words you speak over them, and they will pick up on any doubting or fearful undertones. This week set a reminder on your phone to help you remember to intentionally speak life to your child. Ask God to give you the right words to help you to speak words of faith, and prophesy truth and godliness over them.
Some examples might be: “I’m so thankful God gave me a daughter like you!” or “God is making you into a man of strength and integrity!”
Shut out the voices and press on in faith and joy—this is the greatest gift you can give your child.
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I am a musician, a reader, a thinker, and a software engineer. I love few things more in life than curling up with a cup of coffee and reading my Bible in the mornings.
If I could achieve one feat in my life, it would be to inspire everyone around me to see God as so much bigger than our boxes, more beautiful than our wildest dreams. I want to inspire awe of God in others, an awe that leads to adoration, worship, and lifelong devotion, even as I come to know him myself more every day.