Revive Our Hearts Podcast

Leslie Basham: Author and speaker Mary Kassian asks . . .

Mary Kassian: So many of our young women today are idle for the kingdom. They are wasting kingdom time. Just their whole purpose is to be out there catching a guy because they think that’s what will fulfill them. There is no guy on the face of the earth that will fulfill your needs—not a one.

Leslie: This if Revive Our Hearts with Nancy Leigh DeMoss for Monday, July 15.

Nancy Leigh DeMoss: Women have always faced temptation, and that goes back to Genesis chapter 3, the Garden of Eden. In many ways, I think the temptations that women face today are different than those faced by their mothers or their grandmothers.

Today, my friend Mary Kassian is going to describe some of the challenges women face in today's world. She’s going to point us to a timeless solution. Mary’s been a regular guest here on Revive Our Hearts

Today we'll listen to a message that she gave at the first True Woman Conference in 2008. I'm delighted to let you know that Mary will be joining us again for the next True Woman Conference in 2014.

Mary is also the author of the book, Girls Gone Wise in a World Gone Wild. Let’s listen to Mary’s message, contrasting a wild woman with a wise one.

Mary Kassian: Most of you have heard of the "girls gone wild" phenomena. The buses that go around the country to various beaches—particularly when there is spring break. For the price of a T-shirt, the young women are asked to do all sorts of things. Say, "If I give you a T-shirt, would you bare your breasts for me?" And these women do it. They do things that are a lot more vulgar and crude.

I remember the time when such things would be shameful, and you wouldn't even think of it. It would be a disgusting thing to ask of a woman. But times have changed, and women have changed, and the girls have gone wild.

Have you noticed how aggressive girls have gotten? (for you women who are a little bit older) For you women who are younger, you've been raised in a society that teaches you to be very aggressive, and go for it, and if there's something you, go for it.

So we’re going to going to be talking about some passages of Scripture. I’m going to be doing a contrast between what the Lord teaches us what we should be as women. His Word gives us some directions about what that means for our behavior.

Nancy loves to teach from this passage as well. I do it a little bit differently, but it is a very telling, revealing passage in Proverbs chapter 7 that I would like you to turn to right now.

Now in this passage there is a father talking to his son about how to be smart and how to live wisely. He gives a warning about a certain kind of woman. This passage paints a picture of the wild woman, of the type of woman that the father wants the son to be wary of, the son to avoid this type of woman.

So by taking this passage and a little bit out of the chapter just before it and contrasting it to some other passages, we can paint this contrasting picture. We will see it developing—twenty-one contrasts between the wild and the wise.

So I'm going to start reading chapter 7, and we are going to read the entire chapter.

My son, keep my words and treasure up my commandments with you; keep my commandments and live; keep my teaching as the apple of your eye; bind them on your fingers; write them on the tablet of your heart.

Say to wisdom, “You are my sister,” and call insight your intimate friend, to keep you from the forbidden woman, from the adulteress with her smooth words.

For at the window of my house I have looked out through my lattice, and I have seen among the simple, I have perceived among the youths, a young man lacking sense, passing along the street near her corner, taking the road to her house in the twilight, in the evening, at the time of night and darkness.

And behold, the woman meets him, dressed as a prostitute, wily of heart. She is loud and wayward; her feet do not stay at home; now in the street, now in the market, and at every corner she lies in wait. 

She seizes him and kisses him, and with bold face she says to him, “I had to offer sacrifices, and today I have paid my vows; so now I have come out to meet you, to seek you eagerly, and I have found you. I have spread my couch with coverings, colored linens from Egyptian linen; I have perfumed my bed with myrrh, aloes, and cinnamon. Come, let us take our fill of love till morning; let us delight ourselves with love. For my husband is not at home; he has gone on a long journey; he took a bag of money with him; at full moon he will come home.”

With much seductive speech she persuades him; with her smooth talk she compels him.

All at once he follows her,
 as an ox goes to the slaughter, or as a stag is caught fast till an arrow pierces its liver; as a bird rushes into a snare; he does not know that it will cost him his life.

And now, O sons, listen to me, and be attentive to the words of my mouth. Let not your heart turn aside to her ways; do not stray into her paths, for many a victim has she laid low, and all her slain are a mighty throng. Her house is the way to Sheol, going down to the chambers of death. (ESV)

Let's flip back to Proverbs chapter 6 and read verses 23–26.

For the commandment is a lamp and the teaching a light, and the reproofs of discipline are the way of life, to preserve you from the evil woman, from the smooth tongue of the adulteress. Do not desire her beauty in your heart, and do not let her capture you with her eyelashes; for the price of a prostitute is only a loaf of bread, but a married woman hunts down a precious life. (ESV)

This passage paints the picture of a certain type of woman. This woman is not a woman of God's heart. She's the type of woman that men need to be careful of.

I think as you’ll see, as we unpack this passage, this is the type of woman that our society says we should be. 

The first point of difference between a wild woman and a wise woman is perspective—perspective.

Number 1: A wild woman is preoccupied with outward appearance. So either what she looks like, her physical appearance—dressing in a way that’s alluring; dressing in a way that’s attractive, whatever. She spends a lot of time, as Sex in the City girls do, on those designer shoes. Now, I like shoes. We’re girls; we like shoes. But this is just a preoccupation with externals, with external things, with appearances.

When you contrast that in the other passages, the wise woman knows that physical appearance is secondary to spiritual heart condition, that man looks at the outward appearance, but God really looks at the heart. She concerns herself with her heart. She has “noble character.” She is “clothed with strength and dignity” instead of just the latest Prada fashion. So that’s point number one—perspective.

Number 2: Modesty factor. We see that this woman, the wild woman, is one who flaunts her body like a prostitute, it says, in verse 10. Modesty has gone out the window, hasn’t it? Young women are taught, and sometimes older women also . . . You see them dressing, and you’re going, “What are you thinking?”

I have three sons. Now my sons are almost . . . some of them are grown men; some of them are just on the cusp of being grown. My oldest son is twenty-four; he just married the most beautiful girl in the world. My middle son is ready to turn twenty-two, and my youngest is nineteen. So I have these three boys in my house, and I remember one day being out with one of my sons, and there was a woman who walked past.

A young girl walked past, and she was dressed very, very seductively. She was spilling out everywhere. She walked past, and it wasn’t just what she was wearing, it was the way she was walking. She kind of gave my son the eye. So I asked him, “What do you think, and what do you feel? Like, what do you think when you see a woman like that?” That’s a pretty daring question. I thought he might avoid it.

And he said to me, “Mom, to be perfectly honest, she arouses the male in me, but she does not appeal to the man in me.”

“That’s a good answer, sweetheart.”

But it’s true, and we need to watch how we dress. Women now are taught to use their sexuality as power, that if you dress in a way where you can seduce a man, where you can be sexual, it’s powerful. It’s the sexual women who have the power. That’s a lie from the pit of hell. It is.

A woman who is wise dresses modestly. The words in the passages . . . “modest,” “temperate,” “decency.” How about this: the femininity factor. This is almost the opposite.

Now I need to tell you, I was raised in a family; I had five brothers. I was the only girl. As the story goes, my mom was praying and praying for a girl, and after four boys, she was praying and praying for a girl. One night she woke up and an angel whispered in her ear, “If you want a girl, tonight’s the night,” so she woke up my dad . . . and nine months later I was born on Remembrance Day. What’s the point of that?

The point of that is that I grew up in an all-male environment. I was the only girl. My mom wanted desperately to have me be a girlie-girl, and that was the last thing I was going to be. I was not a girlie-girl. These ruffles almost give me palpitations to put these on. Pink is not a word in my wardrobe, and I would just be happy not to wear the makeup and do the cute girlie . . . I never understood it. Girls were scary to me. They scared me.

But the Lord convicted me that He made women, and He made women beautiful, and He wants us to enjoy our femininity (number 3). So many of us run around sloppy, and we don’t care, and we don’t wear makeup, and I’m that way half the time. I need to be very intentional often about being feminine. I have to think, Okay, my husband has looked at ugly enough days in a row.

Let me read a verse for you that may startle you. It startled me when I found it. It’s in Deuteronomy 22, verse 5. It says this:

A woman must not wear men’s clothing nor a man wear women’s clothing, for the Lord your God detests anyone who does this.

Wow! That’s kind of startling, isn’t it? That’s very interesting to me, and I think the point of it is not so much, “Oh, women shouldn’t wear pants.” We can’t make hard and fast rules because I think it will look different from culture to culture.

But I think the point of it is this: God created us, men and women, and He wants His men to be men and His women to be women. So for some of us who have grown up in this culture, that’s going to take a little bit of work, and a little bit of intentionality. Some are drawn to dress immodestly and to dress in a way that’s just sexual, and others just love that sweatshirt and sweatpants and will not part with it. Right?

So the Lord has to challenge our hearts to correct us and bring us into balance one way or the other—the femininity factor. To begin saying, “Yes, there’s something that is important about femininity.” I’m very competent in a lot of things, very independent, but there’s something that God values about femininity, about that softness that He has made a woman to be—femininity factor.

Number 4: Body language. We see here that the wild woman is flirtatious; she’s physically forward and suggestive; she’s shameless. In the passage it uses the word “brazen,” so she’s the one that comes up, grabs the guy, and kisses him. Body language—she’s very flirtatious and suggestive.

The wise woman guards her dignity; she doesn’t resort to deceptive charm. We see words in the passages of Scripture like “purity,” “decency,” “worthy of respect,” “doesn’t use deceptive charm.” Women do have power, just in terms of alluring men. We all know what that’s like to try and be brazen, to try and be forward, to be the one that stands oh so close.

Number 5: Time and energy. The wild woman hangs out in places where she might attract men. She lurks. We’re told in the passage that she’s out in the streets squares; she hangs out at every corner—the public places, the places where she’s going to hang herself out like bait to look and to pursue and to catch men.

The wise woman, on the other hand, is busy with personal mission, not with catching menShe’s busy with good deeds. She does not eat the bread of idleness. Her arms are to the poor, hands to the needy.

I was talking to one of my sons about the woman that he would find and marry. I said, “When you find this woman, she’s there with nothing to do and putting herself in places to find you. This woman is going to be a woman of mission. She will have mission and purpose for the kingdom.”

So many of our young women today are idle for the kingdom; they are wasting kingdom time. Just their whole purpose is being out there is to catch a guy, because they think that’s what’s going to fulfill them. But as we talked about this morning, there is no guy on the face of the earth that is going to fulfill your needs. Not a one. Now if the Lord gifts you with a great relationship, that’s a wonderful and beautiful thing. Brent and I will be married twenty-five ears, and it’s the richest, most beautiful relationship I could dream of from an earthly perspective. But still, he is not the one who ultimately meets my needs. It’s the Lord Jesus Christ who gives me my identity, my surety, my confidence in who I am. I need to be about the Lord’s business, as do all of us.

Women who spend inordinate amounts of time, and I’m just going to talk to you young unmarried women at this point in time, and also women who are single or unattached. What is it with Christian women going out to bars? I don’t get that. You might call me old fashioned; you might say I’m out of touch, but in my mind, you are having that lurking street corner, every corner, out there, hanging out the sign, trolling the waters trying to catch your male kind of mentality that Scripture says you shouldn’t have.

Number 6: Pursuit. I need to make a confession. There was a girl calling my youngest son. This was the day before cell phones. She was calling and calling and calling and calling, and I just exercised my parental authority, phoned the phone company and had her number blocked.

Before I did that, I tried another tactic. I said, “I will take a message. Yes, he’s sitting right there on the couch, but I will take a message, and he will phone you back.” But girls today are taught that they can be the initiators in a relationship, that it really doesn’t matter. “You should go for what you want. If you see a guy you want, go for him, pursue him, chase him.”

Let me tell you what that does. I have seen it time and time again where women have done that; they’ve gotten the guy; they are the ones who initiated. They phone him; they pursue him; they chase him; they get the wedding running and going; they are in control of the relationship. Five, ten years down the road, they hate him because he’s a couch potato. They’re tired of doing everything and running the house and having a man who’s passive or passive aggressive.

The way that you date turns into the way that you relate when you get married. The way you relate to men overall sets patterns for your marriage. It’s important the patterns you establish and how you relate, and we are told in Scripture that the woman, the wild woman, is the woman who comes out, who takes hold of him, the woman who looks for him and preys upon him.

Whereas, the wise woman is the woman who wins him over with pure, holy behavior; she won over her husband. Sarah regarded Abraham as master. In other words, there’s a reverence and a purity, and a “I’m not going to go out and get, I’m going to be a prize worth getting. I’m going to be a woman of God, and I am worth pursuing,” because God says so.

The holiness and the relationship and the whole picture of Christ pursuing His church, remember? If we’re talking about male and female as being a mini-picture for us of the relationship between Christ and the church, and furthermore, an inter-Trinitarian relationship, we learn a lot about God because male and female were created in His image. If that’s the case, then this stuff matters. 

Godly women know how to have that sweet, gentle, spirit, that purity and that holiness that says, “I trust God. I don’t have to go and pursue and be in charge. God is in charge, and I can trust myself to Him.”

Nancy: That really is a key, foundational truth: God is in charge, and I can trust myself to Him. We’ve been listening to the first part of a message that Mary Kassian delivered at True Woman ’08. It’s been amazing to me at all the True Woman conferences to watch thousands of women come from across the United States and from other countries of the world, drawn by one common desire. They want to see God cultivate in their lives qualities of a wise woman that Mary just described.

Mary's written a terrific book called, Girls Gone Wise in a World Gone Wild. This is a great resource for women of any age. I remember the first time I read through it thinking, This is a book that I wish I had written.  It is so choke full of great insights that can be applied to every season of life. It's a book that I think is particularly valuable for college-age women, women in their twenties—young women who are grappling with some issues in our culture and in our world that are particularly difficult.

So moms, grandmoms, you may have a young adult daughter or granddaughter, this would be a great tool to give to that young woman.

We’ll send you a copy for yourself or for a young woman in your life when you support Revive Our Hearts with a gift of any size. Your support means a lot to us and will help us here in the summer when we usually see a drop in donations.

Ask for the book, Girls Gone Wise when you call us at 1-800-569-5959, or you can visit us at our website and make a donation there at ReviveOurHearts.com.

Now, that web address, ReviveOurHearts.com, is where you’ll also find information about the next True Woman Conference—True Woman ’14. It may seem like a long way off, but it’s not too early to get it on your calendar, start making plans, and start putting a group together to come from your area.

True Woman is coming to Indianapolis in October of 2014. Mary Kassian will join us, along with Joni Eareckson Tada and Janet Parshall and others. Get all the details at ReviveOurHearts.com.

The Scripture encourages us particularly as women to cultivate a gentle and quiet spirit. You might wonder, is that really possible today? Mary Kassian is going to address that question when she returns tomorrow, right here on Revive Our Hearts.

Revive Our Hearts with Nancy Leigh DeMoss is an outreach of Life Action Ministries.

*Offers available only during the broadcast of the podcast season.

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