Personal Struggles
November 1, 2017
The Modern Woman’s Struggle with Sexual Sin

WATCH VIDEO  Sexual sin has often received the label of being a “male problem.” However, lust isn’t a male problem — it’s a human problem, and women are desperately struggling too. If you struggle to be open and honest about your own sexual sin,  see if any of these lies are at the root of your struggle: 1. I’m the only female who struggles with sexual sin and temptation. 2. Sexual sin is supposed to be a “guy issue,” so I must be weird. 3. My family and friends would be shocked if they knew what I struggled with. 4. Everybody views me as the “good Christian girl” soFull Post

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October 27, 2017
Overcoming the Fear of What Other People Think About You

I couldn’t fall asleep. My heart was heavy and my mind was spinning with one thought – my imperfections. The day hadn’t gone very well. I thought of all the people who seemed better than me and I was overwhelmed by emotions. Eventually, I fell asleep. But mere sleep cannot remedy a struggle. Our culture today has a very loud voice and it wastes no time in telling us what they think we should be. In grocery store checkout lines and on billboard advertisements we see what the world claims to be “perfection.” Not to mention, friends, family members, peers and even people in the church throw expectations uponFull Post

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September 29, 2017
6 Ways to Make Your Journaling More Meaningful

I love journaling. In fact, I started journaling when I was 12 years old and didn’t miss a single day until I got married. That means I journaled for 12 years straight – every single day. I journaled everything and anything. I wrote about my most intimate thoughts, to what I did that day, to who my latest crush was. Shortly after I married Zack, I thought it would be fun to look back through my journals with him and read all of the entries that he was mentioned in. I traced it back to the year 2006, when I first met him as a teenage girl. Reading thoseFull Post

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September 25, 2017
How I Overcame Being Shy, Selfish, and Seriously Awkward

I was 15 years old, had a mouth full of braces and was desperately shy and awkward. Our whole family was involved in the AWANA program at our church and I had just started attending the high school program. The first week came and I sat by myself. I walked to game time by myself. I left by myself. The next week, the same thing happened. This went on for several months. I hated going. I hated feeling shy and uncomfortable. I hated not having any friends and feeling desperately alone. After several more weeks, I thought up a “brilliant” plan. Since, there was no getting out of going,Full Post

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September 15, 2017
5 Reasons Girls Aren’t Honest About their Sexual Struggles

Being honest about my past struggles with sexual sin and masturbation wasn’t easy. In fact, I didn’t want to be honest about it. I didn’t want to confess it. I wanted to shove those sins into the deepest darkest corner never to be seen again. But I knew that wouldn’t work. Sin always has a way of making its way to the light. As a “good christian girl,” I felt so ashamed and embarrassed inside that I struggled with lust. I was positive that I was the only Christian girl in the entire world who struggled with masturbation. Sexual sins like that were supposed to be guy issues…not girlFull Post

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August 11, 2017
4 Verses to Help Christian Girls Conquer Temptation

I’m married to an amazingly godly and kind man. But like any human, Zack might occasionally say something or do something that I don’t view as particularly “sweet and thoughtful.” Instead of giving him the benefit of the doubt, my natural tendency is to assume the worst. Instead of lovingly asking him about it, I often cater to my sinful frustration. This happened recently. I felt the temptation of anger come on me. Instead of resisting it, I allowed my emotions to overtake me. I allowed my feelings to rule my thinking. Once again I found myself giving into temptation. Several hours went by of me pouting and grumbling in myFull Post

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July 21, 2017
Choosing to Pursue Radical Purity in Your Own Life

Talking about God’s radical design for love, sex, and purity with 400 girls and women isn’t a normal occurrence in this day and age. But that’s exactly what happened this past weekend at the Radical Purity Conference in San Antonio, TX. We courageously, unashamedly, and tactfully unpacked God’s good plan for our sexuality as women. We talked openly about some of the not-so-often-talked-about areas, and allowed God’s Word to shed light and truth into these relevant topics. We asked the hard questions, and looked into God’s Word for solid answers. We quickly discovered that God’s design for purity is radical. It’s completely counter-cultural. It’s unlike anything you see inFull Post

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July 12, 2017
Be a Girl Who Lives with Vision, Passion, and Purpose

When Kristen and I launched our very first blog (long before GirlDefined existed) we didn’t have a very clear plan of what we were doing. Due to our serious lack of vision for the blog, it didn’t take long for our interests to diminish. Let’s just say that our original blog didn’t last very long. Through that experience, the two of us realized our serious need for vision, passion, and purpose. Once the two of us established our vision for GirlDefined, that drove our passion, which in turn fueled our purpose on a daily basis. We want to challenge you to be a girl who lives with a visionFull Post

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June 23, 2017
How to Get Your Spiritual Life Out of the Drive-Thru Lane

Another day was over and I had done it again. With sleepy eyes, I reached for the lamp on my nightstand and turned off the light. I fell asleep to the familiar feelings of guilt and regret. I had intended to spend some quality time with God that morning. I had pulled my Bible out and found a nice comfy spot to sit on the couch. I intentionally made coffee ahead of time…so I already had that in hand. I even set an alarm to remind me to get started. So what in the world happened?   Sadly, what happened this morning was what happened to me many mornings.Full Post

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June 9, 2017
Modern Female Heroes Needed for Battle

The guard slapped her across the face and yelled, “keep moving!” Her tiny frame and malnourished figure stumbled forward. On the brinks of starvation and freezing to death, she was doing everything possible to simply survive. Ripped away from her family and friends, she had nothing left but her faith. The days and months wore on as Corrie Ten Boom endured the horrendous evil inside a Nazi concentration camp. She was in the midst of a monstrous battle. As the days and weeks wore on, she watched her precious sister die from sickness. Fighting the rage of anger inside her heart, Corrie knew that there was only one weaponFull Post

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May 26, 2017
7 Truths for Overcoming Worry in Your Life

As a single girl (before I married Zack) I had so many fears and worries running through my head. “What if I never get married?!” “What if no guy likes me?!” “What if don’t get married until I’m 40?!” Fear. Worry. Lack of trust. All of my worries were completely in vain. Around 3 years later Zack (my now amazing husband), asked me to be his wife. Since I was no longer worried about “getting married,” I figured I was in the clear of my worry issues. Ha! Not even close. Little did I know how much hard work and money it took to plan a wedding (much less a reallyFull Post

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May 12, 2017
4 Signs You’re Being a Christian Gossip Girl

As soon as I saw her text message, I instantly felt the twinge of guilt. This friend was following up with me about a conversation the two of us had shared earlier that day. We had been innocently chatting about a recent challenge in her life regarding a certain relationship. Without even realizing it, our conversation headed south and begin to borderline on gossip. The details we hashed out about that particular person went too far and were not necessary. So in this text message, my friend asked me to forgive her for gossiping about that particular friend. I knew I was guilty as well, so I asked askedFull Post

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April 28, 2017
5 Signs You’re Obsessed with Social Media

My alarm goes off. I rub my tired eyes not wanting to wake up. I roll over in bed and reach toward my nightstand in the dark. It’s here somewhere….oh — got it. I grab my phone and unplug it from the annoyingly short charger cord. The bright light from my phone half blinds my sleepy eyes. But I’m determined. I must…check…my…social media. Half asleep, I begin scanning the latest posts and comments. Like a robot set on repeat, this routine becomes the default for my mornings. Sound familiar to you? I am embarrassed to say that this pitiful scene has been the default method for many of my mornings. CheckingFull Post

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April 14, 2017
Jesus Died So We Could Be Freed from Our Secret Sins

After months of pure misery, Natasha couldn’t keep the secrets to herself any longer. They were tearing her life apart piece by piece. Every secret she kept only made it harder for her to reveal what was really going on in her life. Natasha was a friend of mine. She called me one night on the phone and couldn’t hold back the tears as she shared what had been going on. She had been secretly watching online porn and engaging in sexual conversations with several different guys. She was so ashamed and embarrassed. She could barely speak the words. “I just need to tell someone! I don’t want to live like thisFull Post

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March 24, 2017
Why Becoming Famous and Hot Shouldn’t be Our Goal

She was a nobody. Outside of her small circle of friends, the world didn’t even know she existed. As a music lover, she would sing songs in her room late into the night. She dreamed of becoming a famous singer. But as it was, Nashville didn’t even know she existed. Then one day, everything changed. She decided to post a few of her videos on Youtube. Little did she know what would happen next. She knew her voice was pretty good…but she had no idea how much talent she truly possessed. Within 24 hours her videos went viral. After 10 million views, she got a call from a majorFull Post

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March 6, 2017
How to Spot and Get Rid of Idols in Your Life

Ashley had grown to dread hanging out with her friends. She hated the thoughts that flooded her mind every time she met up with them. What if they don’t like my hair? What if they think my outfit looks stupid? What if they don’t get my jokes? On and on the thoughts continued. Ashley tried her best to curl her hair perfectly, paint her nails just right and wear the cutest outfits, but nothing seemed to work. Ashley’s desperate desire to be completely loved and accepted by her friends was turning her into a sad and depressed young lady. Ashley thought that if she could only gain the constantFull Post

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March 3, 2017
Emma’s Story: Opening Up About Past Sin Changed Her Life

I leaned my weight against the bathroom sink trying not to throw up. My heart was thumping so loud that my scarf was thumping up and down. I was doing all I could to keep from crying. My heart kept pounding. It felt like someone had stuck a wooden spoon inside my stomach and was stirring my insides around. I took a deep breath. Looking in the mirror, I told myself I didn’t want to do this. I had been on this mission trip for a month. I had heard each of my teammates admit to sin in their pasts when they gave their personal testimonies. But it wasFull Post

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February 26, 2017
Finding Freedom from Your Addiction to Porn

I recently read about a girl who was strolling through a local grocery store, when she felt a sudden and overwhelming urge for a chocolate candy bar. The urge became so powerful that she forgot what she was doing and headed straight for the candy aisle. She searched the options wondering which one she should choose. She spotted one she had never seen before. The label pulled at her desire with words like “Great new taste!” “Satisfaction guaranteed!” “No more hunger cravings!” The girl grabbed the candy bar and started savoring the first bite. Her entire being was enraptured in the moment. She loved the way the candy made her feel.Full Post

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January 8, 2017
Learning to Trust God When the Situation Seems Impossible

Let’s fly back in time to October of 2014. I remember it like it was yesterday. Kristen and I were standing in a hotel Starbucks waiting to meet the one and only Erin Davis. (She’s the amazing gal who runs the LYWB Blog). I’d been interacting with Erin for several years via email but had never met her in person. I was so excited to finally meet face to face and have the opportunity to pick Erin’s brain about blogging, book writing, and getting published. In my mind, she was (and still is) the pro. I was (and still feel like) the newbie who was hoping to glean any wisdomFull Post

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December 16, 2016
3 of the Most Popular Places to Misplace Your Identity

“Meet Laura Van Ryn and Whitney Cerak: one buried under the wrong name, one in a coma and being cared for by the wrong family.” Those were some of the first words I read in a gripping book called, Mistaken Identity. This true and shocking story made national news when it was discovered that the identity of two college girls was accidentally swapped after a tragic bus accident. One girl died and was accidentally buried under the identity of her friend, who was in critical condition. After weeks of mourning the death of their daughter, the family was shocked to discover that it wasn’t their daughter they had buried,Full Post

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November 22, 2016
The Quickest Way to Ruin Your Holidays

WATCH VIDEO  The holiday season is supposed to be the happiest, most joyful, and celebratory time of the year, right? Unfortunately, there have been times in the two of our lives where the holidays have been some of the most miserable. Looking back on those “miserable” holidays, we realize exactly where we went wrong. High Expectations.  Self-Centered Attitudes. Lot’s of Complaints.  We really want to help you avoid ruining your holiday season by getting rid of these three attitudes. We truly believe that the holidays can be some of the happiest and most joyful times of the year if you have a proper heart attitude and focus. WATCH VIDEO       

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November 20, 2016
Two Simple Truths that will Radically Change Your Heart and Attitude

Jennifer’s tears rolled down her cheeks as she struggled to express her thoughts. “I just don’t feel like God sees me or cares about me. He’s never answered a single one of my prayers and I never see Him working in my life. I don’t have many friends, my parents don’t give me the time of day, and my health is awful. I just can’t see any reason to live for God or praise Him. I honestly think He has forgotten about me.” The tears continued to fall and Jennifer seemed to be growing more depressed and discouraged as she thought about her life. From her perspective, life wasFull Post

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October 31, 2016
4 Creative Ways to Love and Minister to Other Girls

Have you ever been left out by a friend? Have you ever felt like a certain friend wasn’t reaching out to you enough? Unfortunately, when stuff like this happens, our natural tendency is to complain and whine about what the other person (or group of people) isn’t giving us. We complain that they aren’t loving us enough, caring about us enough, initiating conversation with us enough, etc. Instead of doing something about it, we sit back and throw ourselves an internal pity party. I know, because I’ve done it many times. However, about six to eight years ago my entire perspective took a 180 degree turn. I learned oneFull Post

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October 24, 2016
4 Tips for Maintaining a Strong Spiritual Life

My dad is a carpet cleaner—and a very fine one, at that. It’s a lovely luxury to enjoy the feeling of fluffy, soft, newly-cleaned fibers under your feet. But, just like everything else in life, carpet requires maintenance. Most people clean their carpets about once every five years. However, if carpet receives a regular maintenance cleaning (like once every five months), it stays fresh and relatively unsoiled.    The same is true about spiritual maintenance. There’s nothing like the feeling of a spiritual high. Like sensing a close fellowship with our heavenly Father, the Spirit within delighting in the things of God. However, those mountaintop seasons usually don’t happenFull Post

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September 30, 2016
Is Masturbation Wrong for Christian Girls? (Part 1)

Caution: This topic may not be appropriate for younger audiences. Without being unnecessarily graphic, my hope in writing this two part series is to offer helpful biblical counsel for the many Christian girls who are struggling in this area. It used to be that most blogs and books dealing with sexual sin issues were geared towards men. However, over the past few years many women have opened up about their own sexual sin struggles, expressing a need for help in this area as well. Praise the Lord! We, as women, are not immune to lustful sins any more than men are. Lust is not a guy problem…it’s a humanFull Post

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August 19, 2016
How to Snap Out of it When You Feel Totally Down

I went through a challenging time in my life once and had a great temptation to turn to “stuff” (shopping, food, mochas, novels, etc.) to make myself feel good in the moment. Instead of handling my sad emotions in the right way by turning to God’s word, I tried to cover them up by shopping and buying fun stuff for myself. Thankfully, at just the right time, I ran across a great podcast by Nancy Leigh DeMoss. She gave am awesome piece of advice that I found extremely helpful during my time of temptation. She told a story about how she was in a down mood and didn’t feelFull Post

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August 10, 2016
5 Powerful Truths for Overcoming Secret Sins (VIDEO)

WATCH VIDEO It is absolutely impossible to experience lasting freedom if we have ongoing, secret sin in our lives. This vlog will show you how to get rid of secret sin. WATCH VIDEO

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August 3, 2016
5 Quick Tips to Having an Awesome Quiet Time

WATCH VIDEO Personal devotions can be hard. It’s hard to know what to study. It’s hard to feel motivated when you don’t know what to do. This video will give you 5 quick tips on how to get started. WATCH VIDEO

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July 22, 2016
3 Practical Tips for Conquering Secret Sexual Thoughts

“I struggle with lustful thoughts all the time and I wish I could stop!” “I thought my sexuality was supposed to be a blessing…but I can’t seem to keep my mind pure! It doesn’t feel like a blessing anymore.” “Being single is a lot harder than I thought it would be! I battle against my sensual thoughts every night and it’s getting really old. Help!” Have you every has similar thoughts? Sexual thoughts and struggles are something that every Christian girl will battle at one time or another. Unfortunately, unlike most other struggles, this is one that can easily be kept under wraps. Many girls who struggle against lust keep it completelyFull Post

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July 20, 2016
How to Be Content When Your Heart’s Desire is Unfulfilled

WATCH VIDEO   Each one of us have those “If I only had” moments…  “If I only had ___________, then I’d be happy.” “If only I were married, then I’d be happy.” “If only I had a baby, then I’d be happy.” “If only I had a nicer car, then I’d be happy.” “If only I could buy more clothes, then I’d be happy.” Nobody’s life is perfect. We all have unfulfilled longings in our heart.  However, the two of us have learned (and continue to learn) how to be content even when our heart’s desire is unfulfilled. We pray that this vlog encourages you to find true contentment inFull Post

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July 11, 2016
What God Taught Me the Day I Almost Died

It was a hot summer day and I was doing the normal thing a kid would do. Swim! I was having a blast in the large pool with my family unaware of what was about to happen. I decided to take a dive under the large floating tube that my mom was sitting on. I gracefully swam underneath her and came up on the other side to take a breath…or so I thought. As I tried to surface for air, I felt my head hit something large instead. I was underneath the tube, not on the other side. I dove back down to escape the tube, but felt somethingFull Post

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July 8, 2016
When Wanting to be Accepted Turns Into an Obsession

It was a hot summer afternoon, deep in the heart of Texas. I was twenty-one years old and extremely self-conscious about looking good in front of other people. I would do almost anything to impress others. I  wanted to be liked. So imagine how I felt about driving a car as old as I was. Yeah, I wasn’t super thrilled about the idea. But the car was free (given to me by my grandparents), and it was in great working order. It was practical and got me where I needed to go. Even so, I was extremely self-conscious about driving it. When I would go hang out with myFull Post

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July 4, 2016
Why Being an Independent Woman Isn’t Always Good

“Hey honey, I really think we should go talk about this some more,” Zack said in a serious tone. We had just finished having a rather intense discussion about something that we didn’t see eye-to-eye on (at all). My emotions were completely driving the train and I was “done” discussing it. I crossed my arms like a child throwing a fit and looked up at him with a frustrated look.   “Babe, come on.” He said in a firm, but loving tone. “Let’s go finish this conversation. We need to.” He gestured for me to join him on the couch. I could feel my independent spirit rising up fromFull Post

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June 27, 2016
3 Signs You Love Looking at Yourself a Little Too Much

This mirror was like a magnet for my eyes. Every time I walked past this particular mirror in my house I looked into it. Without even realizing it, I had made it a habit to “check myself out” every time I walked by. Before I knew it, I was “checking myself out” every time I walked past any mirror. This subtle habit was rudely awakened one day during a construction project in my house. My favorite mirror had been removed from it’s normal place…but out of habit, I still looked in that same spot every time I walked by it. Instead of catching eyes with myself, a blank whiteFull Post

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June 20, 2016
15 Fun Ideas to Help You Deepen Your Relationships

Ever since Zack and I got married (5 years ago!), we have always made it a huge priority to have a special date night once a week. To keep things interesting, we’ve always taken turns planning the activity. We decided that he would plan the first and third Friday nights of the month, and I would plan the second and fourth. After several months of planning my turn for date nights, I was running low on new and exciting ideas. I had exhausted my internet research and couldn’t find anything new. There were some great Christian movies out, so I decided to rent one and keep the date night relaxing and simple.Full Post

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June 8, 2016
Strong Girls Obey God’s Word Even When it’s Hard | Vlog

WATCH VLOG If you want to be a strong girl, you must learn to obey God’s Word even when you don’t feel like it. We can’t be wimpy girls when it comes to honoring Christ with our lives. Way too many of us have given up on God’s truths when it’s hard or takes sacrifice. We’ve given into peer pressure, allowed the culture to shape our views, and have followed our emotions. We pray you will join the ranks of (truly) strong girls in today’s culture! We want to leave you with this question: What tough circumstances are you facing today that require you to be a strong girl forFull Post

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April 6, 2016
How My Selfishness in Marriage Ruined My Satisfaction

My husband and I recently celebrated two years of marriage. Yes, that’s not a long time compared to some, however God has taught me a lot. Let me just say this upfront – life doesn’t get easier when you get married. I’m sorry single friends…life doesn’t magically get easier with a man by your side (even if he’s amazing). After marriage, I realized how truly selfish and sinful I can be. I used to think it was extremely odd when I heard about people divorcing after two years. Then I got married and realized how selfishness can easily lead down a devastating road. As I allowed “my personal rights”Full Post

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March 21, 2016
Standing Strong In and Through College

Going off to college is probably one of the most trying and difficult times in a young woman’s life. The challenges, pressures, temptations and lack of experience more often than not end up taking Christian girls down. Sadly, Christian girls aren’t coming out stronger (in a biblical sense) but weakened and further away from Christ. I guess that’s why one of the GirlDefined readers e-mailed us asking us to write on this very topic. “How do I keep my faith at school because I know how challenging it will be. Please do a blog about this.” She’s right. It will be challenging…but not impossible. I love that we areFull Post

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March 14, 2016
God’s Truth Helped Me Overcome Suicidal Thoughts

Three months ago I almost took my life. I didn’t like anything about my life. I felt the best thing to do would be to leave. Thankfully, by God’s grace, some friends spoke biblical truth to me, and I am still here today. My life, just like everybody else’s, is hard. I find myself wanting things to go my way and I don’t care if anyone gets hurt in the process. I’ve lost friend after friend and have cut myself just to deal with the pain. No matter what I did, nothing would get rid of the pain. I kept trying to find something to distract myself. I’d runFull Post

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March 4, 2016
Why You Should Totally Trust God with Your Future

“It’s just so hard to trust God with my future when I have no idea what’s going to happen,” she said in a discouraged tone. “I mean…I want to trust God, but it’s just really hard for me. What if I never get married?” I listened as my friend shared her heart with me. She was single and really struggling to trust God with her love life. She was in her late twenties and was wondering if marriage would ever become a reality. Trusting God with our future can be one of the hardest things to do. There’s so much uncertainty in the unknown. “What if I never getFull Post

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February 24, 2016
How to Study Your Bible and Love it!

I’ve had so many Christian girls ask me this simple question, “How do I study my Bible?!” They’re not wanting to know how to read their Bible, they’re wanting to know how to dig in and study it. And they’re wondering if there’s a way to do it and LOVE it. The answer is YES! You can learn how to study your Bible and absolutely love it in the process! I’m going to teach you how to do that right now. But first, this question; why would a Christian girl need to “study” her Bible? Why does this even matter? Well, if you want to know what’s true, knowFull Post

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February 15, 2016
3 Ways Porn Wrecks a Girl’s View of Herself

If a female porn star showed up at Disney World, would you know who she was? Hopefully not…but sadly, that’s not the case for a lot of young women today. I read a story a while back about a family who took their daughters to Disney World for a vacation. As they made their way through the park, they noticed a long line of people waiting in front of a booth. There were a lot of couples, families, and groups of teenage girls in line, so this family walked up and asked someone what was going on. It turned out everyone was waiting in line to see some famous actress, butFull Post

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January 27, 2016
5 Easy Ways to Read Your Bible This Week

I sat down to read my Bible one morning and just stared at the cover with a glazed look. Where do I even start? What do I even read?! This book is HUGE! How in the world do I “study” it? If you’ve ever had a moment like mine, this post is for you. I’ll be totally honest. I’ve gone through seasons of my life where I wasn’t sure what to read in my Bible, or even how to read it. I’ve gone through seasons of feeling totally disinterested in God’s Word all together. As I’ve looked back on my Bible reading habits over the years, my “low” momentsFull Post

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January 24, 2016
8 Strategies to Help You Fight for Purity

Let’s be real. Maintaining purity in our modern culture is not an easy thing to do. Unless we as Christian girls are vigilant in fighting for purity from the inside out, we will fail. We will give into temptation. We will succumb to our sinful hearts. We (me included) desperately need Jesus and we desperately need His strength to help us focus on truth and resist temptation. I soooo want to fight for purity and I pray each and every one of you do as well. My hope and prayer is that this blog post will challenge, encourage, and give you the tools you need to continue your fightFull Post

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December 23, 2015
What a Scandalous Teenage Pregnancy Taught Me About God

She was the good girl. Everybody knew it. She had a great reputation with her family and friends. She was respected and held up as a great example for younger girls to look up to. Then, the unimaginable happened. After visiting some relatives in a far away city, she arrived back home with some unexpected news. Some shocking news. She was pregnant. Just imagine the rumors and gossip that spread like wildfire across her town. “SHE is pregnant?!” “How could SHE, the purest girl of all, get pregnant?!” “Who’s the father…?” “Why would SHE do this?!” Shock. Scandal. Sin. I’m sure those were the feelings and thoughts that many ofFull Post

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December 18, 2015
12 Wishes for Having the Best Christmas Ever

I don’t know about you, but the Christmas season has a way of bringing out my best and worst. In the midst of a joyous party with family, I have found myself thinking self-centered thoughts. Rather than focusing on the true Reason for the season…I subtly begin to view myself as the reason for the season. Everything is about my happiness and joy, right? Wrong. While wish lists, Christmas parties, and traditions are all fine and fun, I am realizing this year (more than ever before) that my heart needs a focus shift. My “wish list” needs a makeover. Instead of focusing on my desires and my wishes andFull Post

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December 9, 2015
How Would You Respond if Your Wedding Got Canceled?

“With a sorrowful heart and deep pain, I must announce that my wedding has been canceled.” Those were the shocking words I read on my soon-to-be-married friend’s Facebook status. What was going on?! I went to her wedding shower less than a week before I read this post…and her actual wedding day was scheduled to take place in three weeks! How could this be possible? Was this a joke? I immediately pulled out my phone and contacted this girl friend of mine. She informed me that the message was true and that her fiance had called of the wedding and the engagement. Everything was over. Her heart was filledFull Post

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December 4, 2015
How to Handle Your Sexual Desires as a Single Girl

I may be married now, but I was single for 24 years and I know exactly what it’s like to have unfulfilled sexual desires. In fact, I have a really embarrassing story to confess to you. When I was a young teenager, I thought it would be a good idea to “practice” kissing before I met my husband. So…I “practiced” by smooching a designated kissing spot on my wall inside my closet. Since I wasn’t going to kiss a real guy until marriage, I thought a little practice wouldn’t hurt. Yeah…awkward. I know. Not to mention it didn’t really help. I share that embarrassing story with you to showFull Post

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November 30, 2015
The Quickest Way to Become an Unattractive Girl

Have you ever met someone and thought they were really attractive at first glance, but the more you got to know them the less attractive they appeared? What happened? Their physical looks didn’t change…what changed was the “revealing” of their true character. The more you got to know them, the more their true self shined through and the less attractive they appeared. Our culture trains us to believe that outward beauty is the only beauty worth chasing after. Yet,  how ironic that a highly attractive person can suddenly become “ugly” in our eyes if they’re mean, rude, angry, and self-focused. Who would you rather spend the rest of yourFull Post

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November 25, 2015
20 Amazing Reasons to be Grateful Today

Life on earth is a far cry from perfect and it can feel overwhelmingly negative at times. In my own life, I’m tempted to focus on the things that go wrong more than the things that go right. I find myself zeroing in on the negative stuff until my sight turns into tunnel vision. I can’t see anything good anymore because I’m so zoomed in on the bad. Ever done that? Honestly, it’s a terrible way to live. It’s nothing but depressing! There’s no joy in tunnel vision, yet we all do it regularly. Since this is supposed to be the month for giving thanks I thought it wouldFull Post

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October 12, 2015
What to do When Life Doesn’t Serve You What You Feel Like Eating

The day was miserably hot. The sun glared through my window, and everything outside seemed to be dancing in a ripple of heat waves.   It was definitely summer, and it was here in full force. I looked down at the dried inmates of my once thriving window box. The marigolds were nothing but brown stalks sticking their heads sadly out of the ground. The dirt was dry and cracked, and everything seemed to be completely hopeless. But then I noticed one plant that didn’t resemble the rest.   It was a stem with two or three green leaves still clinging to it, and from the stem, in allFull Post

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October 9, 2015
Can the Bible Help with Depression, Eating Disorders, and Porn Addictions?

Jenna was your average high school girl. From the outside, she seemed happy and excited about life. What most people didn’t know about Jenna, was that her doctor diagnosed her with depression. Jenna has been taking antidepressants for over a year now and seeing a counselor on a weekly basis. Deep down, she sees very little improvement in her life. She feels hopeless and lost on the inside.  Melanie is similar to Jenna, only she’s in college. She’s cute, skinny and all the guys seem to like her. From the outside she’s the girl that all the other girls are jealous of.  What nobody knows though, is that MelanieFull Post

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September 28, 2015
How I Found Purpose During My Boring Teenage Years

It was another typical Monday morning and I was not looking forward to waking up early. The alarm went off and I was dreading the start of another day. Life was just not that exciting. In fact, it felt a little boring. As a 16 year old girl life is very much the same old, same old. Lot’s of school, cooking, cleaning, spending time with family, and trying to figure out what I want to do when I grow up. I really don’t have a schedule full of exciting adventures or thrilling opportunities. Because of my “same old, same old” schedule, I’ve struggled to believe that my life mattersFull Post

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September 23, 2015
Having Courage When the Bathing Suit is Way Too Small

My eyes grew twice the size as I watched my swim coach pull my new bathing suit from the box. “Ummm are you sure that’s her bathing suit? It looks a little small.” My mom asked with a questioning voice. My swim coach chuckled a little and then replied, “I’m positive this is her bathing suit. We order them extra small so that they will fit tight. We don’t want anything slowing her down when she’s in the water.” With hesitation my mom paid for the swimsuit and then handed it to me. I was only ten years old when this bathing suit fiasco went down, but I rememberFull Post

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September 21, 2015
6 Signs You’re Looking for Happiness in the Wrong Places

Have you ever rolled out of bed and thought, “I hope I have a terrible day today?” Probably not. I never have. Not many people have. Why? Because we all want to be happy. We all want to have great days. We live in a world where happiness is the end goal of almost every person’s life. Everyone wants to be happy. Everybody is searching, hoping, and longing to find that “one thing” that will make them permanently happy. Sadly, very few people find lasting, permanent happiness. That’s why many famous, rich celebrities bounce from relationship to relationship, mansion to mansion, car to car…they’re hoping the “next thing” willFull Post

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September 16, 2015
Porn: What Every Christian Girl Needs to Know

If you’ve believed the lie that pornography is something hidden in the deepest corners of the internet, you’ve been duped. Whether you’ve been exposed to porn or not, you have probably already gone through years of soft porn grooming without even realizing it. If you’re like I was, you probably think of porn as being some form of intense adult content only targeted at men…but it’s not. Listen carefully to how the dictionary describes porn: “Sexually explicit videos, photographs, writings, or the like, produced to elicit sexual arousal.” Did you catch that last part? “Produced to elicit sexual arousal.” How many mainstream movies, songs, books, TV shows, and magazinesFull Post

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September 9, 2015
5 Tips to Help You Strengthen Your Bible Time

“I just love my personal devotion time. I get in my closet, fall on my knees, and praise the Lord. I treasure that time with Him. Me and God all alone. It’s the best part of my day. I couldn’t survive without it.” As this sweet, older woman shared her heart about her personal devotions, I stood there wondering why I felt like she was speaking a foreign language. I was sixteen years old. I had been a Christian for many years, memorized tons of Scripture, and read my Bible on a daily basis. Despite these “Christian credentials,” my personal devotions felt nothing like this sweet lady’s description ofFull Post

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August 31, 2015
How to Show Love Towards Prostitutes, Homosexuals, and Muslims

If there was one conversation I’d never prepared for it was this one – randomly talking with a young woman at Starbucks and then finding out she was a prostitute. Caught off guard and totally unprepared would be an understatement for how I was feeling when she told me what she did for a living. I’ll never forget that day or that young woman. My feelings of pity and sorrow went through the roof when she told me why she had recently moved to San Antonio. I wanted to reach out my arms, give her a big hug and help her get a new start. The conversation ended beforeFull Post

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August 28, 2015
Are You Playing Footsie with Sexual Temptation?

His heart beat faster as he purposely walked down the dark street. It was nighttime, and nobody else was out. He knew she lived in this area. He was hoping she would come out to meet him. He glanced around to make sure no one saw him. He continued walking when she suddenly appeared in front of him. Without saying a word, she wrapped her arms around his neck and brazenly kissed him. “My husband is gone,” she said in a seductive whisper. “Come with me and let’s have our fill of love until the morning!” Like an ox being led to the slaughter, he immediately followed the seductressFull Post

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August 26, 2015
Smart Girls Predetermine to Follow God no Matter How Difficult

A life changing decision needed to be made and I was the only person who could make the final call. Deep in my heart I knew there were only two options: God’s way or my own way. I remember sitting with my Bible open to the book of Proverbs trying to fill my mind with Biblical insight. The more I read the more confirmed the answer became. There was a problem though. I didn’t like the truth. Choosing to accept the insight and wisdom I was gleaning from the Bible meant I had to make a really hard decision. One I wasn’t interested in making. Although I was veryFull Post

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August 24, 2015
5 Ways to Beat Back-to-School Temptations

The summer is almost over which means the beginning of the new school year is lurking right around the corner. You can tell it’s the end of summer because every store is advertising their back-to-school gear and accessories. For some of you this is an exciting time of new beginnings and a fresh start. For others, it’s a dreaded time of tests, peer pressure, and waking up at the crack of dawn. Whatever your school year may look like, there’s one thing it has in common with everyone else’s – a little thing called sneaky temptations. The buzz of a new school year is always accompanied by a buzzFull Post

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August 5, 2015
What to do When “Loving Your Selfie” is all the Rage

“You have got to be kidding me?!” I said to Bethany in a mildly shocked tone as she showed me a photo on her phone. “Did you really see that shirt in the store?” “Oh, yeah,” she replied while raising her eyebrows and smirking. “Welcome to the twenty-first century!” A popular store in town was selling a t-shirt with bold words on the front that said, “I Heart My Selfie.” I immediately did some research online to see if this “trend” was actually popular. To my astonishment, I found an entire line of “selfie” products. You can purchase any of the following items with the words “I Heart MyFull Post

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July 27, 2015
When Guys Become More Exciting Than God

“He just texted me again!” Abby said with a girlish squeal. She and her two sisters were hanging out in her bedroom chatting about guy stuff. Abby was nineteen years old and secretly hoping that Clay was “the one.” She woke up every morning wondering if he had texted her. If he hadn’t texted her, she would instantly think, “I wonder if he’ll text me today!” Or “Should I shoot him a text?” Or “Should I try and casually sit by him when we hang out in groups?” Or “Maybe I should suggest going on a date…?” Thoughts like these consumed her mind morning until night for several months.Full Post

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July 24, 2015
How I Handled the Hardest Day of My Entire Life

I sat there in the hospital room holding my dying baby brother in my arms. Prior to this moment in time I was a happy, outgoing, carefree 16 year old girl. Everything in my life seemed perfect…until I got the dreaded phone call. I was on my way home from a week long summer camp and was laughing over the weeks memories with my friends in the car. My mom was 8 months pregnant and from my perspective seemed to be doing great. Little did I know that tragedy struck home while I was away. “Mom’s in the hospital. The doctor says something is terribly wrong with the baby. TheyFull Post

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July 22, 2015
My All-Time Favorite Tip on How to Have a Consistent Prayer Life

Girl 1: “Hey girl, I’m going through a really hard time right now.” Girl 2: “Oh, really? I’m so sorry. What’s going on?” Girl 1: “Well…I’m just really struggling with some worry and fear in my life. I don’t know what to do.” Girl 2: “Oh man…that sounds really hard. I’ll definitely be praying for you. Girl 1: “Thank you so much. I need it.” Several weeks go by and Girl 2 has never prayed for Girl 1 even a single time. She meant to. She wanted to. She intended to. But it just slipped her mind. She completely forgot about her promise. Have you ever told someone youFull Post

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July 20, 2015
5 Truths to Help You Destroy Secret Sexual Sin

I wouldn’t be surprised if nearly every one of you reading this post has struggled with, or is currently struggling with, secret sexual sin. Why do I assume that so many of you struggle (or have struggled) with secret sexual sin? Because (at times) I’ve struggled with this in my own life and I’ve received enough emails through GirlDefined to know this is a big problem for many of you. I want you to know upfront that today can be a turning point in your life! I hate the thought of you feeling alone, helpless, or hopeless in your struggle. I’m writing about this topic today to offer youFull Post

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July 13, 2015
3 Quick Tips to Instantly Improve Your Personal Devotions

Do you feel like your personal devotional time is… A. Vibrant and really consistent. B. Pretty good, but could get better. C. Okay, but in need of some passion and consistency. D. Pretty irregular. And honestly, quite boring. E. It basically never happens. If you picked B or below, this post is for you. Keep reading. And guess what – this post is written for me too. I usually fall under the letter B. I’m forever striving to improve my quiet time. Since we’re in this boat together, I’m going to share 3 quick tips that have helped me instantly improve my personal devotion time over the years. They’reFull Post

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July 10, 2015
Where Will You Be 100 Million Years From Today?

I recently saw an image on facebook that I did not want to see. The image was graphic, heartbreaking, and extremely thought provoking. The image pictured several men only moments before they were brutally put to death by the wicked hands of ISIS. When I saw that picture my mind went wild. What if I were in their shoes? What if I were being put to death? Would I be ready? Although I didn’t want to see that image of those men preparing for death, I’m grateful I did. That image was a huge reminder of how short and shockingly fast life truly is. I realize this blog postFull Post

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July 3, 2015
How I Overcame Being Shy, Selfish, and Desperately Awkward

I was 15 years old, had a mouth full of braces and was desperately shy and awkward. Our whole family was involved in the AWANA program at our church and I had just started attending the high school program. The first week came and I sat by myself. I walked to game time by myself. I left by myself. The next week, the same thing happened. This went on for several months. I hated going. I hated feeling shy and uncomfortable. I hated not having any friends and feeling desperately alone. After several more weeks, I thought up a “brilliant” plan. Since, there was no getting out of going,Full Post

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July 1, 2015
You Don’t Have to be a Victim to Your Crazy Girl Emotions

During the past couple of months my life has been busy, busy, busy. My days have been filled with long hours of manuscript revisions, traveling, speaking, working in my dad’s office, visiting with relatives, and so much more. During all of this busyness, I’ve also been facing an emotionally confusing issue in a certain area of my life. Due to the combination of tiredness and busyness, I’ve been struggling to keep my thoughts and emotions under control. Typically, I can focus my mind on Scripture (or prayer) and my thoughts and emotions get in check pretty quickly. Not this time though. For some reason, I’ve been in need ofFull Post

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June 8, 2015
A Sure Fire Sign That You are a Foolish Girl

A few years ago, I was a foolish girl. I didn’t think I was at the time, but looking back I realize I was a fool with a capital F. There was season in my life when I lived out the “fool” part of this verse, “The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but a wise man listens to advice” (Proverbs 12:15). I wasn’t a fool in every area of life, but there was a particular area where I very strongly rejected any advice that did not line up with my own opinion. Here is how that verse looks on a twenty first century girl,Full Post

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June 3, 2015
A Love Story in the Mind

She was thirteen years old when she was noticed for the first time by a guy. Butterflies swarmed inside of her making her feel as if she was the most special thing in the world. She felt beautiful for the first time in her life, because no one had ever treated her like Austin did. Her parents were very Godly people and always tried their best to raise their kids the right way. However, they came from a worldly background before they came to know the Lord, so they were well aware of what the world and Satan had to offer for their children. Her parents warned her ofFull Post

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May 15, 2015
One Must-Have Recipe for Overcoming Sadness

In 1967, after graduating from high school, Joni had her fateful accident that would change her life forever. It was a hot July day so she decided to meet her sister Kathy and some friends at the beach in Chesapeake Bay to swim. They unloaded their stuff and settled down for a fun day of swimming. They didn’t waste any time getting into the water. Laughing and smiling, Joni took a big jump and dove into the sparkling fresh water. She immediately knew something was wrong. She couldn’t move her body. Everything went numb. Without realizing it, Joni dove head first onto a large rock that was hidden justFull Post

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May 13, 2015
Lust: A Christian Girl’s Problem Too

I have an honest confession. As a young high school girl, my heart was full of lust and I did very little to fight against it. One night, God got ahold of my heart and everything changed. I came across a little hardback book that blasted truth into my heart like never before. It’s the little book written by Josh Harris called, Sex is Not the Problem, Lust Is. Tears streamed down my face as I realized how wrong and sinful I had been. I felt dirty before a Holy and perfect God. I confessed my sin and asked Christ to forgive me. Was life perfect after that? NotFull Post

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May 1, 2015
How to Find Happiness When Your Heart’s Desire is Unfulfilled

“Rachel was a real knockout. Rachel undoubtedly knew that when it came to feminine charms, she had her sister Leah beat hands down. She must have relished the favor that was hers. She was so beautiful that when Jacob first laid eyes on her, he knew she was the one for him. In their first meeting she captured his heart, and he served her father fourteen years for her. In fact, he loved her so much that the years he spent working to secure her for himself ‘seemed to him but a few days’ (Gen. 29:20). That’s real devotion! With a beginning like this, you would think that theFull Post

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April 27, 2015
Letting Go of Pain and Suffering

When we look around at the circumstances of people in the world today, we discover that there is a vast amount of suffering and pain being endured. Many different people struggle with many different types of suffering. Hospitals are full of horrible diseases and injuries, parents are getting divorces, babies are being aborted, war is raging, people are being sold into slavery, drug abuse and alcoholism is affecting more and more people and the list goes ever on and on. People are hurting. Everyone is affected by suffering or pain at one point in their life. Iit may not be physical but everyone goes through tragedy. And when theyFull Post

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April 24, 2015
Why I Quit Trying to Make Everyone Like Me

A few weeks ago I did an online personality test with my younger sister Ellissa and a good friend of ours. Ellissa randomly came across a free online site and thought it would be fun to try it out. The website nailed each of our personalities. Mine was “entertainer.” Apparently I’m a total extrovert and thrive on being the life of the party. I think my family and most of my friends would agree with that. What struck me most during the survey was a hidden piece of my personality that came to light. The survey asked a question along the lines of, “do you worry about what peopleFull Post

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March 27, 2015
Do You Ever Feel Like God is a Cosmic Killjoy?

I can only imagine what pop culture would say if they read the GirlDefined blog. They would probably request that we be sent to the insane asylum for crazy thinking. In fact, some of you might think we are at the top of the crazy meter, too. Let me offer you some words of encouragement. We understand that the message of God Defined womanhood is not the norm. It’s not popular or cool, and it’s totally counter cultural. So what’s up with us being so counter cultural? Why are we so passionate about a message that is totally uncool?  Maybe this story will help you understand. “The story isFull Post

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March 11, 2015
Why Watching People Make Out Should be Awkward

The tension was building. Something big was about to happen. Everyone felt it. The romantic story had been a roller coaster of ups and downs, sorrows and joys. But something was about to change. As the young couple finally realized their passion for one another, it happened. They embraced one another and engaged in a full blown make out session. I sat there watching this climactic scene unfold. And…after about three seconds, I began to feel awkward. I glanced around the room to see if anybody else looked uncomfortable. Nothing. All eyes were locked on the screen. After what felt like an hour, the kissing finally stopped. I’ll beFull Post

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February 16, 2015
When Life is Tough Cling to This Truth

Every morning after my yawning, stretching, and rubbing of the eyes, I hop out of bed to see the carefully painted wood sign sitting atop my dresser. “It is well with my soul.” Those words to the familiar hymn stare back at me. As I read those piercing words, I feel a little tug at my heart as if they are reminding me to cling to the truth of their powerful message as I try to stay afloat during the craziness of the day. I love that familiar hymn, but all too often I am ashamed to say I struggle to believe those convicting lyrics. Let’s all be honest.Full Post

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February 11, 2015
When Romantic Fantasies Get the Best of You

I was at a major league baseball game recently with my grandparents when the strangest thing happened. As the game reached the ninth inning, an entire flock of teen and college age girls began swarming towards my section. They quickly formed a line right across the aisle from where I was sitting. Apparently they were lining up to get photos with some guy. I couldn’t figure out what was so special about this guy, so I asked one of the girls rushing past. She looked at me in slight shock and said. “It’s Juan Pablo Galavis!” I stared blankly back. “Who’s that?” I asked. She looked even more shocked. “He’sFull Post

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February 2, 2015
One Girl’s Journey from Brokenness to Beauty

Have you ever looked in the mirror and not liked what you saw? No matter how hard you tried your outfit, makeup, hair, etc. just didn’t look “good?” That’s me. I’m the girl who everyone thinks is confident, carefree, and knows God loves me. Mainly because I’m the pastor’s daughter (any PK’s out there?). I’m sure most of you have had this struggle too. It’s probably the most popular of all the “teenage-girl problems.” My hair is plain brown, no volume. My eyes are dull blue-ish grey, no pop. I’m short with absolutely NO curves whatsoever. For the past four years I’ve struggled with the fact that I’m notFull Post

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January 30, 2015
Getting God Off the Back Burner

I looked my husband in the eyes and told him how much I loved him. I said, “You are the most important person to me. I can’t imagine loving you any more than I already do. You are so valuable and special to me.” After my little time of sharing He said, “I love you too! Let’s get a cup of coffee and sit down and talk. I’d love to share my heart with you and hear what’s on your heart.” As much as I love Him, I looked back and said, “I am really busy . . . I just don’t have any time. I love you soFull Post

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January 19, 2015
6 Signs You’re Addicted to Instagram

Do you love Instagram or other photo sharing apps? Are you addicted to them? Let’s find out! Insert your favorite photo sharing app in the context below and see how you measure you. 1. You check Instagram first thing in the morning. You wake up from a good night’s sleep. Another great day. Before you even roll out of bed you glance over to your nightstand. There it is. You get your morning stretch in by reaching for your fully charged phone. Without even thinking you open up Instagram. You catch up on latest since you went to bed last night. You browse every photo until you’re completely caughtFull Post

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January 2, 2015
A Goal You Can’t Live Without

I pulled up to a coffee shop several days ago with my sister, Ellissa, for our weekly mentoring meeting. She graciously asked me to be her mentor earlier this year and we’ve had some incredible meetings over the past 6 months. As we prepared to get out of the car she began telling me about a really interesting New Years fact she heard about. She went on to tell me about the shocking difference someone discovered when they compared the top 3 New Year’s goals of the 1940’s to the top 3 New Year’s goals of today. Here’s what they look like: 2015: 1. Lose weight 2. Get moreFull Post

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December 22, 2014
What an Amish Guy Taught Me About Christmas

I was driving down the road the other day listening to one of our local Christian radio stations. The DJ asked people to call in and share something that helps them keep Christmas in its proper place. As I was listening, this lady called in from Pennsylvania and said she has several Amish friends in the area (she is not Amish). One evening during a Christmas party she was talking to one of the Amish guys and asked him how his family celebrates Christmas. He shared with her many of his favorite family traditions and how special each one was to him. She went on to ask if hisFull Post

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December 19, 2014
When Good Girls Do Dumb Things

It was a hot summer day a little over ten years ago, when Kristen and I decided to do a really dumb thing. Back in those days, we were known as the “good girls” and we thought we did a good job of measuring up to that reputation. In a way, we almost felt immune to doing bad things and never really imagined ourselves making any dumb decisions. We grew up in a Christian family, attended church regularly, were homeschooled, didn’t date around and actually liked our parents. We figured life was good, we were good and   we weren’t really capable of doing dumb things. Wrong!  Let’s getFull Post

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December 17, 2014
7 Deadly Sins You Should Run From

There are some things in life that are extremely tempting for me. There’s a Starbucks Coffee shop right down the street from where Zack and I live and their grande, decaf, no-whip mocha seems to call my name every time I drive by. If there was some way to justify it as “healthy” and budget friendly, I would probably drink several cups a day. Zack asked me a funny, but true question the other day. “Why do all the unhealthy food and drinks have to taste so good?! Why can’t a carrot or a piece of celery have the same taste-bud-explosion experience? It would be so much easier toFull Post

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December 15, 2014
Six Verses on Purity That Every Girl Should Know

I recently received an email from a girl asking me to send her Bible verses on the topic of purity. The girl said she vaguely knew that the Bible promoted purity and holiness, but that she wasn’t exactly sure where to find the passages. After I emailed her back with a list of verses I wondered if there were more girls out there like her. Girls who know that the Bible “promotes purity” but aren’t exactly sure where to find the passages in the Bible. If you are one of those girls who wants to fight for purity, keep reading. This blog post is written for you! Let’s beFull Post

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December 12, 2014
Why Christian Girls Should Be Beautiful but Not Seductive

Several months ago I wrote a controversial blog post that went viral and picked up a lot of positive and negative attention. It currently has over 730 comments and has reached over a million people. It’s called “Why Christian Girls Post Seductive Selfies.” If you’re interested, you can read it here. My main point was to bring up the question of why so many Christian girls post provocative, sensual and seductive selfies online. I challenged Christian girls to reevaluate their online images and ask themselves if what they’re posting is honoring to God. After reading through several hundred of the comments I began noticing a theme. People were makingFull Post

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December 8, 2014
When God Doesn’t Give You What You Desperately Want

Three and half years ago I stood at the altar of a beautiful church with a handsome groom across from me beaming from ear to ear. I was getting married (read more on that here) and everything in my life seemed absolutely perfect. I had a loving, wonderful, supportive family and was marrying into an equally awesome family. My soon-to-be husband had a great job with no fear or concern for financial struggles. I was experiencing top notch health and didn’t have a single ache or pain to be burdened by. My relationship with God was really good and I had an exciting future ahead of me. I actuallyFull Post

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December 5, 2014
It Takes a Tough Girl to Say These Words

I remember three very distinct times in my life that I had to be a tough girl. Once at age seventeen, twenty and twenty-four. When I was seventeen I’d been offered multiple full basketball scholarships to division one universities. Basketball was my passion and I loved playing. When I wasn’t playing basketball I was either talking about it, thinking about it or dreaming about it. In my junior year of high school the university basketball coaches needed an answer from me and I had to give them my final decision. After many hours of prayer and long discussions with my parents, the answer was crystal clear. I didn’t acceptFull Post

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December 3, 2014
Is it Wrong to Be Angry at God?

I held her little furry body in one hand as she licked my face. This tiny puppy had me at “ruh-roh.” She was so small and yet so full of life. I looked at my husband, Zack, and he knew I was sold. “I guess this means we’re taking the puppy.” He said to the owner. We exchanged money and paperwork and before I knew it I was holding a 1 lb., 8 week old Maltipoo puppy on my lap as we drove home. She was my early Christmas present. “I just love her!” I said with a huge smile as her big black eyes looked into mine. “SheFull Post

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November 26, 2014
Are You a Whiner or a Worshiper? {Free Book Giveaway}

I quietly walked up the stairs and peeked inside my friends bedroom. The lights were dimmed and she was asleep. I tip-toed over to her bed and whispered, “surprise” as I held up her favorite Starbucks drink in my hand. She smiled up at me and then slowly sat up. From the outside, she looked as sweet, beautiful and joyful as I always remembered, but on the inside she is in terrible pain. The doctors have exhausted their level of knowledge and have told her multiple times that “we don’t know what else to do.”  Despite the doctors’ words of hopelessness and lack of answers, my friend, Grace, hasFull Post

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November 17, 2014
5 Truths to Combat “Out-of-Control” Emotions

Sarah checked her outfit in the mirror, grabbed her purse and headed out the door. She had been planning and preparing for homecoming night for months and couldn’t wait to meet up with her friends. She arrived at school only to find Jake, her crush, laughing and chatting it up with some of the most popular girls in school. Sarah’s emotions ran wild with jealousy and she found herself sulking the entire night. She couldn’t help but wonder if Jake “liked” one of those girls and would soon forget that she existed. Sarah’s emotions were out-of-control when it came to guys. When guys noticed her she was happy, whenFull Post

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September 24, 2014
Confessions of a Skinny Obsessed Girl

There I was, waking up every morning with a new resolve to not eat as much as I did the day before. I was determined to eat less so I didnʼt gain weight, but every day it seemed like I failed. My thoughts as I stood in front of the mirror went something like this: “Why can’t I just be skinny? I would be so much happier if I was as thin as a Gap model. I’m not going to eat anything till dinner, and when it comes, I’m going to have bird size portions.” I hated thinking this way, but I felt helpless. I would remind myself thatFull Post

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September 17, 2014
Why Peer Pressure will Make or Break You

I was fifteen years old and surrounded by my girl friends at a sleepover party. The birthday girl stands up and announces that we’re all going to watch a movie. She says the name of the movie and my heart immediately sinks. This movie was bad news. What’s worse, I knew specifically that my parents did not want me to see it. All the girls cheered as my friend popped it into her VHS player. I didn’t want to look dumb by leaving the room or worse, announcing that “my parents wouldn’t approve.” Instead, I caved into peer pressure like a little mute mouse and silently watched the film.Full Post

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September 12, 2014
How to Not Have an Abortion Some Day

Rachel was a Christian girl from a conservative family. She grew up in church and went to all the Christian conferences. As she grew older, she decided she didn’t like the straight and narrow path of the Christian life, so she ventured out to try some worldly “fun.” After several bad friendships, parties, and guys, she woke up one morning and found herself pregnant. Shocked and embarrassed, she didn’t know what to do. Becoming a single mother had never been in her plans…but here she was. Her life came to a fork in the road and she had to make a choice.  Rachel hated the idea of getting anFull Post

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September 5, 2014
The Secret that Tormented Me

Long long ago when Kristen and I were just young girls, living at home, enjoying life and building tree forts, we stumbled upon a secret that kept us tormented for weeks. Kristen asked my mom to type in the internet passcode on our big old desktop computer (laptops weren’t really a thing back in those dinosaur days). It just so happened that my moms fingers were greasy from the food that she was eating and the grease left marks on each key she pressed. Kristen was a smart little whip and wrote down the letters on each greasy key and called me over to help decipher the code. OurFull Post

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September 3, 2014
3 Side Effects of Loving Yourself

I was driving down the road the other day when I suddenly hit a bunch of traffic. I was in a hurry and not in the mood to be generous to any intruding cars trying to merge into my lane. As one car tried to squeeze their way in front of me, I reluctantly slowed down and let them over out of sheer Christian obligation. I wasn’t excited about it. Ever been there? Not too long before that I was with a large group of people and pulled out my pack of gum to grab a quick piece. Instead of offering a piece to everyone in the group, IFull Post

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August 29, 2014
Mind-Virgin: Saving More than Just Your Body

I walked down the long aisle in my beautiful silk dress. My heart pounded with excitement as I locked eyes with my handsome husband-to-be. He beamed from ear to ear as I slowly approached him. This was the day, the moment we had been anticipating for the past eight months. We were both raised in Christian homes and were taught from a young age that saving sex for marriage was the Biblical and right thing to do. The anticipation of giving the gift of virginity to one another was overwhelmingly exciting. There we stood on our wedding day – both virgins and looking as pure and as perfect asFull Post

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August 6, 2014
Self-Esteem: Why Christian Girls Don’t Need it

Meet Jenny. She’s a tall and lanky high school girl who wishes she was shorter and prettier. Jenny hates the way she looks. She’s never had a boyfriend and blames it on the fact that she’s too tall and too ugly. Years of bitterness and anger turn Jenny into a depressed young woman. Her parents decide to take her to a counselor. After hearing about her problems, the counselor explained to Jenny that she suffered from having low self-esteem. The counselor said that the solution to this problem is to simply love and accept herself more. Like Jenny, millions of girls around the world are struggling with similar feelingsFull Post

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July 25, 2014
Chocolate Covered Sin

The lights were off and we could hear our dad making his way to bed. Bethany and I pretended like we were asleep as he poked his head into our bedroom. After several minutes of lying there, I leaned over to Bethany and whispered, “the coast is clear.” We slowly opened our bedroom door and looked to the right and left. Our parents’ door was shut for the night and all of our siblings were fast asleep. We tiptoed quietly to the kitchen and gently pulled the freezer door open. This was it – the moment we had been planning for all night. I reached inside and carefully grabbedFull Post

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July 23, 2014
Bored, Single and Still Living at Home

This goes out to all the single girls still living at home! I sat down on a lawn chair on our pool deck. The summer wind blew in my hair and the sun shined warm rays on my face. I took a deep breath and a sip of my sweet tea. I stretched my legs out and wiggled my toes. Everything was quiet and peaceful. This was the beginning of a beautiful lazy afternoon and a perfect time to finish my book. I guess my mom had other plans. She loudly pushed open the screen door disrupting the fantasy world of my book. “Lisa! I’m gonna need your helpFull Post

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July 7, 2014
God, Please Don’t Mess Up My Dreams

Three years ago I sat in a doughnut shop with some friends and had a conversation that  I will never forget. I ended up in a heated debate over the topic of marriage and motherhood. My responses during that debate would mostly likely have been a shock to you considering what this GirlDefined: Getting Back to God’s Design blog is all about. As surprising as this may sound, I (in so many words) told this person that marriage and motherhood wasn’t enough for my future. I said that I could not be happy unless I was heavily involved in this ministry or something similar. Although I didn’t say theseFull Post

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July 4, 2014
Are You a Bratty American?

From the time they were born their families despised them. Their parents hated them and hoped they would die. These two feeble sisters were born into a poverty stricken home with barely enough food to survive. Not only were they starving, but they lived in a world of scary darkness. Both sisters were born completely blind. These two Cambodian girls endured years of physical and verbal abuse from their parents. Having an incurable disability immediately classified them as “trash” in their country. Nobody loved them. Nobody wanted them. At one point during their youth, their parents took them to the center of the jungle and left them there to die.Full Post

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June 23, 2014
Don’t You Have a Life?

Hi! I guess I should introduce myself to you beautiful people. My name is Lisa Hallahan, I am the daughter to two wonderful parents and the oldest sister (but second born) to 6 amazing siblings! We live on a 20 acre ranch in Montana and have plenty of animals, plenty of laughs, and like everyone else, we have had our share of trials as well. We own and operate a web design business from home and our finances are never stable.  My dad is mentally disabled, but loved and cared for by my mom and loving kids. Mom is the CEO, Sales Manager, Home-school Teacher, Counselor, Chef, Ranch operator, andFull Post

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April 3, 2014
Candace Made the Choice

Earlier this year I told you a story about a girl named Candace. She was born without any limbs. That’s right, no arms and no legs. Shockingly enough, Candace was able to give thanks to God for her life despite the fact that she was limbless. Read the full story here: Candace – The Girl Without Limbs. The story of Candace still amazes me even to this day. I often put myself in Candace’s place and imagine having her life. What would life be like without arms and legs? Could I give thanks to God if I were limbless like Candace? Although Candace is limbless, I think each oneFull Post

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August 16, 2013
God, I don’t Understand

“God, I don’t understand why my parents got divorced.” “God, I don’t understand why I’m still single.” “God, I don’t understand why we had to move across the country.” “God, I don’t understand why my parents have such strict rules for me.” “God, I don’t understand why my family is on such a tight budget.” I vividly remember a time in my life when I had my very own “I don’t understand why” moment. I was nineteen going on twenty when God allowed a guy to enter the scene of my life. I met this guy (let’s call him Nate) at my church’s young adult Bible study. Slowly butFull Post

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August 9, 2013
10 Signs Your Phone is an Idol

Have you ever had one of those moments where you wish you could rewind the time and do things differently? I had one of those moments several weeks ago. I was running late and needed to grab a quick birthday present for my little sister. I zoomed to Old Navy and found a few cute shirts for her and then hurried home to get to the party on time. I set my bags down and reached into my purse to grab my phone. It wasn’t there. I ran outside and checked in the car, but it wasn’t there either. I had a sinking feeling in my stomach. I mustFull Post

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February 24, 2013
Candice – The Girl Without Limbs

Candace is a beautiful and vibrant young lady. She is well known in her church for her contagious smile and joyful attitude. One Sunday as Candace was sitting in the back row of her church, her pastor asked the small congregation to share one thing for which they were grateful. Candace leaned forward and caught the attention of her pastor. He looked at her and asked her what she was grateful for. She looked back with a big smile and said “I am so grateful that God has given me a really great nose.” Everyone in the congregation knew exactly why Candace was thanking God for her nose. TheyFull Post

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January 23, 2013
Emily’s Enticing Temptation

Emily tightly gripped the folded piece of paper in her hand as she sat down at her desk. Her history class was starting and the big mid-term test was haunting her. The teacher gave a few opening words for the day and then passed out the mid-terms to each student. Emily’s mouth went dry as she flipped her paper over and scanned the first ten questions. She slowly unfolded the small piece of paper in her hand while glancing around to make sure she was unnoticed. Her heart rate doubled and her palms started to sweat as her eyes scanned the secret paper. One of her friends had handedFull Post

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June 25, 2012
Help! I’m a Facebook addict.

With over 500 million users, Facebook is now used by 1 in every 13 people on earth, with over 250 million of them (over 50%) who log in every single day. Over 700 billion minutes are spent on Facebook every month. With statistics like that, you probably have a facebook page of your own. How much time do you spend on Facebook every hour – day – week – month? What exactly are you doing on your Facebook page each time you log in? Have you ever thought about it? Maybe you’re updating your status, posting a comment, uploading pictures from your vacation or chatting with friends. The bottomFull Post

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April 19, 2012
Find out if You’re a Slave to Your Phone

Julie and I hadn’t seen each other in several months. She was back in town and we were headed to dinner. We got our food and sat down at a booth and I asked her what she had been up to the past few months. She was excited to fill me in on all of the latest updates about family, friends, guys, school and church. I listened intently as she told me about her life. She finished all of her updates and asked me to fill her in on my latest. She was looking at her phone while I was talking to her.  I started talking about my friendshipsFull Post

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April 2, 2012
The Latest Movie Fads

The Hunger Games, Twilight, Harry Potter… All of your friends are talking about the latest movies and books. You don’t want to feel left out so you read the books and hit up the theater. You’re not sure if they’re the best things to read and watch… but everyone is doing! It must be okay, right? As young Christian women, how do we evaluate whether certain books and movies are honoring to Christ? What about popular movies like Harry Potter, Twilight and now The Hunger Games? Is there a way to determine if these books and movies are something we should devote our time to? God cares a lotFull Post

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