Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Of a Dear New Friend, a Thoughtful Interview, and a Tea Cozy Giveaway!

“A friend loveth at all times…”
~Proverbs 17:17a

“Use hospitality one to another without grudging.”
~1 Peter 4:9

Friends are so very dear, are they not? Time and again, I have been so blessed through the kind words, comforting hugs, and warm encouragement brought to me by my dear friends. It is a tremendous blessing when the Lord brings into our lives new friends to comfort and encourage us, to serve Christ alongside us, and to, in turn, be a strength and encouragement to them, as well. Part of the joy of understanding that it is, in fact the dear Lord Who brings dear friends into our lives, is the thought that we never know when it will be that He will bless us with a new friend. Such was the case for me these past couple months.

Back in August of last year, I, through my home business Cozy Tea Treasures, became a sponsor for the delightful Jane Austen tour that the wonderful site Feelin’ Feminine was hosting. In so doing, I offered up one of my tea cozies for a giveaway to be held during the tour. The winner of the cozy was a dear young woman named Grace, who has a delightful blog called Grace’s Garden Walk. I was so blessed my her sweet thankfulness and warm heart that was so evident in everything she said. To make a long story short, we have kept up correspondence from time to time since then, and a couple months ago I discovered that she so graciously offers advertising and giveaways on her blog for Etsy shop owners. I asked her about possibly advertising Cozy Tea Treasures through hosting a tea cozy giveaway on her blog. With the sweet spirit that is so characteristic of Grace, she enthusiastically agreed and e-mailed me a wonderful list of interview questions to go along with the giveaway, as part of the blog post. Well, in the past couple weeks I have prayed about the interview, answered the questions, sent the answers to Grace, and been so delighted by how she put so much work, detail, and love into the wonderful giveaway post. The way she put it together is truly beautiful, so I want you all to go check out the post, read the interview, and enter the giveaway!! I pray that you will be as blessed by Grace’s work as I am. And may the interview be a blessing, as well!

So, hurry on over to the calming, beautiful, whimsical Grace’s Garden Walk blog and enter the giveaway, which ends Tuesday, April 5th!

And, thank you, dear Grace, for your sweet friendship! May the Lord bless.

Friday, March 18, 2011

A Response to a Reader: Views on Feminism and Inborn Gender Traits

I recently received the following questions from one of my readers:

“I am curious if (1) you have tried studying or thinking about feminism from another point of view, and (2) if you have considered the sociological aspect of femininity (i.e. that gender traits come primarily from being raised in a certain environment, or studies that show male babies tend to be more emotive, etc.)?”


Hi, Anonymous! First let me say welcome to my blog, and thank you for taking the time to ask these questions. I appreciate the opportunity to hear from one of my readers as well as the opportunity to better clarify where I’m coming from.

In response to your first question, I think many people have the idea that the only way I know anything about feminism is solely by reading the points of view of ladies who hold to Titus 2 and try to live out its teachings as closely as possible day to day. The common thought may be that I have only studied feminism through the reading of books and the watching of DVDs produced by those who are criticizing feminism. However, this is not the case. So, in answer to your first question, I have studied feminism from the point of view of those who were instrumental in beginning the movement as an organized agenda, as well as through the eyes of those who are modern-day feminists. For example, I have read books such as The Feminine Mystique by Betty Friedan; The Woman Question, which contains writings by Karl Marx, Frederich Engels, Joseph Stalin, and Vladimir Ilyich Lenin; and On the Emancipation of Women by Vladimir Ilyich Lenin. I have also read articles here and there written from the feminist point of view, as well. Quotes from some of these works have been included in various articles of mine.

In regards to your second question, this topic has been raised quite a bit, not just to me but to others, as well. I have stated in articles before that girls grow up loving to play with dolls, toy vacuums, toy kitchen sets, and doll houses, but that, something that is unfair about feminism, is that as little girls grow up, they are increasingly told that caring for babies, cleaning homes, cooking and baking, and being homemakers is not good enough. They may like all those things with a passion, but they have to actually do something with their lives, implying that to simply care for their homes and children is unacceptable-that they must go out and do as men do in the workforce, going through life as strong leaders who get their way and embark on their own paths. I have received comments stating that my sentiments are erroneous, because there are certain studies that seem to suggest that some girls would rather play with trucks, toy police sets, and the like, and that it’s the boys in all actuality that sometimes would rather play with dolls and kitchen sets. However, I believe there are several things we should take into consideration before we consider viewing these studies as absolute truth.

First of all, personalities are different. And just because there may be some girl who prefer to play with fire trucks and there are certain boys who like to play with dolls, this does not change the fact that by and large, this is not the norm

Second, while there may be some studies that imply that boys prefer dolls and girls prefer toy guns, there are a myriad of studies (and personal experience from parents themselves!) which prove just the opposite. This is why I don’t lend as much credence to simple studies. Studies have to be so carefully controlled in order to produce true facts. The girls in the study, for example, may come from families where they have just boy siblings, and so they are used to playing with them and their toys. I know of a large family where one of the daughters is surrounded by boys in the age line of the family, and so she tends to play more with boy toys than girly toys. So, again, we cannot simply go by studies alone and take what they say as absolute truth, because we all know that after one study comes out, it seems that the next day another study comes out which says something totally different and is in stark contrast to the first study. As another example, you mentioned studies that show that male babies tend to be more emotive. For the particular boys in the study, this may well be the case. But that does not mean that most boy babies are like that. Again, it all goes back to having somewhat different personalities. There are some men who are more sensitive and emotional than other men. But that emotion in no way lessens their masculine traits (and, I would say that if a man is sensitive, he tends to be a better husband and father than one who is more hard-hearted!).

Third, you mentioned gender traits coming primarily from being raised in a certain environment. To this, I would simply say that while there may indeed be certain traits here or there that come more from America or more from Egypt, for example, as cultures are different, by and large gender traits tend to be the same from country to country. This seems to go back to the fact that ingrained in girls is the desire to care for the family and home, while ingrained in the nature of boys is the desire to go out and provide for their families, protect them, etc. Down through the ages in all different countries, we see women being mainly responsible for caring for the home, preparing food for the family, caring for the children, reaching out to neighbors and others in the community, etc., while we see men primarily farming, working to provide for their families, fighting in armies and other spheres to protect their families, etc. So, regardless of what a certain environment may be like or what a certain study may say, it seems apparent that gender traits are actually ingrained, I believe by God, into girls and boys.

I hope this has been helpful to you, anonymous, and that these answer will prove helpful to my other readers, as well. Thank you again for your questions!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Biblical Daughterhood Interview Part 2

Hello, ladies! A couple months or so ago, I posted part 1 of an interview a dear friend, Miss Elizabeth over at Joyful Jewels 4 Jesus conducted with me. I hope you enjoyed that! Here, today, is part 2. Praying that it will be a blessing.

JJ4J: What are some books that have been encouraging to you as a daughter?

Rebekah: I love this question, because one of my very favorite things to do is read; I’m always on the lookout for more great books. It is through reading a fantastic book for daughters that the Lord showed me His will for my life as a Christian girl. I received So Much More by Anna Sofia and Elizabeth Botkin for Christmas in 2006, and it forever changed my life. Through reading it, I first became introduced to the concept of stay-at-home daughterhood and came to realize the calling on my life from the Lord. I had never realized how feministic I was in some of my thinking until I read that book. It is an absolute must read for every Christian woman. I cannot recommend it enough! Other outstanding books that have been a blessing to me include Raising Maidens of Virtue by Stacy MacDonald, The Basket of Flowers by Cristoph Von Scmhid (this is a delightful treasure from Lamplighter Publishing), and In My Father’s House: A Vision for Daughters, selected and edited by Tamara and Naomi Joy Valine. In My Father’s House is a must-read collection of essays from the 1800s on topics such as what daughters should spend their time on following graduation, what sort of things they should learn, how they can be a blessing to their families, how to prepare to be a godly wife, how to be fruitful while single, and more. It truly is a treasure! I also just received Miss Jasmine Baucham’s new book, Joyfully at Home. It, too, is proving to be a delightful encouragement.

To read the rest of the interview, go here!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Just Popping in to Say.....

...I'm working on a few new articles that are in response to some interesting questions I have received lately from readers. I'm currently taking a short break from the stay-at-home daughterhood article series in order to focus more time on actually answering the questions and concerns voiced by those who view this topic from a much different viewpoint than my own. I feel like this is the best way for me to serve my readers at this time. As I'm working on formulating my responses, I would encourage you to join in the discussion by sending me your own questions or comments, as well! After sifting through these questions I've received, then I will get back to regularly posting new articles in the series!