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Recently, a young female celebrity who was once a sweet-faced child star was in trouble (again) for being drunk. Magazines displayed photos of her passed out in a car after a night of hard partying. Her fans quickly came to her defense. One wrote:

People really need to ease up on the girl. If every twenty-year-old were thrown into rehab for drinking and partying, the colleges would be empty. It’s a rite of passage for many people. [She] will be just fine.

That mentality pervades our culture. It says, “What you do now doesn’t affect the future.” Here’s how we see it impacting young women. They said things to us like:

 

“I’ll settle down when I get older / graduate / get a job.”

“I won’t have this freedom forever, so I might as well enjoy it now.”

“I’m only seventeen. I don’t need to worry about _____  yet.”


Believing this lie feeds so many others. A great example of this is how so many we spoke to say they intended to marry a Christian, but since they weren’t looking for a marriage partner yet, they could go out with non-Christians. This thinking is so dangerous.

What you choose to do now will either form habits you have to break in the future or habits that are helpful to you. Galatians 6:7 says, “Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap.” If you plant corn, you’re not going to soon have turnips tumbling out of your garden. In the same way, every action has results. If you plant to please your own desires, you’ll reap a crop of consequences. If you plant to please God, you’ll reap joy, peace, and everlasting life.

Habits are a result of seemingly insignificant individual choices and acts that you sow when you’re twelve, fifteen, or twenty. They can be good or bad. You’ll reap what you sow. You’re sowing seeds now. What you do with your time, your eating habits, your exercise habits, the way you talk, the way you talk to your parents, the way you treat your friends, the way you spend your money, the way you work, your sleep habits . . . These are habits you are developing today.

I (Nancy) made a lot of unwise choices about what to eat when I was a teenager and in my twenties. I ate more meals than you can imagine at a fast-food chain that shall remain unnamed—actually I would order a hamburger (make that a double burger with cheese, ketchup, and pickles) and fries at the drive-through and inhale them in my car on my way to wherever I was headed next. To this day, it has been a major challenge in my life to develop healthy eating habits.

Choices matter:

  • the books you read
  • the magazines you read
  • the television programs you watch
  • the music you listen to
  • the conversations you have
  • the friends you choose
  • what time you go to bed
  • what time you get up in the morning

Little things matter a lot.

There’s one habit that was emphasized more than any other in my (Nancy’s) home as I was growing up. I don’t think there is any more important habit you could possibly develop as a teen. It is the practice of spending consistent time getting to know God through His Word. Every aspect of your life, short term and long term, will be affected by this one habit.

I am so grateful that my parents modeled this practice and encouraged me to develop a consistent devotional life as a young girl. I cannot adequately express what a huge difference this habit has made in my life.

I’m not saying it’s easy—as much as I value my time with the Lord, there have been plenty of mornings when I’ve allowed the pillow, my laptop, or other distractions to win out and ended up spending only a few hurried moments with Him. But I know that I can’t be the woman God made me to be apart from having an intimate relationship with Him. And that requires spending time on a regular basis listening to Him speak through His Word and responding to Him in worship and prayer.

Over the years, I have challenged women to get started in this area by making a commitment to spend at least some time with the Lord in His Word every day for the next thirty days. Thousands of women have taken that challenge, and many have written back and told me what a difference it has made in their lives. Would you be willing to take that same “thirty-day challenge”? I can’t think of a single habit that will have a greater impact on your life over the long haul.

Once you start to experience the blessings of meditating on God’s Word and spending time alone in His presence, we believe this is a habit you will want to maintain for the rest of your life!

If this resonated with you, I would encourage you to check out the updated version of Lies Young Women Believe, available now! In it, Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth and I share the most common lies young women believe—along with the Truth that helps you battle them. We hope this book encourages and equips you on your journey to freedom. You can find it for 25% off using the code LIES25 HERE.

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A young girl enrolled in a Christian middle school gave voice to the great loneliness many of us feel in our quest for purity. She said:

I think that at my school, having sex is normal. Everybody has either had sex or they are really close to it. That is something I struggle with a lot. I wonder if I am going to wait. It is all about the moment for me. I struggle with waiting.

An overwhelming number of young women admitted they felt lonely in their quest to live a pure life. It’s easy to dwell on the loneliness when you are trying to honor the gift of sex and wait until marriage. But, I (Dannah) know that the worst loneliness lies in the aftermath of compromise. When I was fifteen, I was attending a Christian high school. I was active in my youth group and was even earmarked as a leader and invited to teach the three-to-four-year-old Sunday school class at my church. I was in a dating relationship in which there was great pressure to be sexual. Oh, not to have “sex.” But to be sexual. And with each secret act of sin I convinced myself that it “wasn’t really sex.” I just knew that could never happen to me. After all, I was a Christian girl who believed in purity.

The pressure increased, and things escalated. I knew I needed to break up with this guy, but I couldn’t get myself to do it. In crept the lie that “I could not endure the loneliness of purity.” So, I gave away the gift that God meant me to give to my husband on my wedding night.

I can’t even begin to tell you how lonely my life became. Eventually, I broke up with that guy, but I didn’t think there was a single person I could talk to about what had happened—what I had done. Everyone in church seemed so picture perfect. Certainly they never knew the depths of sin that I had. I didn’t tell anyone for ten years.

I know what loneliness is.
Maybe you do too.

I’m happy to say that by God’s grace I fully confessed my sin, and in time the Lord graciously healed up my heart. He gave me a great Christian husband who was a virgin on our wedding night and has extended much forgiveness to me. No, he’s lavished forgiveness on me. Just like my Savior. And today God is using me to encourage young women like you to choose the pathway of purity. (Our God is so merciful and creative in His restoration of our broken hearts.) If you have known this loneliness, I want you to see the healing in my life and know that God wants this for you too.

Yes, a commitment to purity challenges you to safeguard your heart it until it is the right time to “awaken” love. Yes, this often feels painful and even lonely, but the pain of self-denial is far better than the pain of self-destruction.

Trust God! Trust him with this difficult task of self-control and self-denial and waiting. We are told in the Proverbs 3:5-6 to trust Him with our whole heart. One of the hardest things to trust Him with is our love lives, but even this belongs to Him.

I (Nancy) want to add a word for those who struggle with the thought, What if God doesn’t ever give me a husband? Having lived as a single woman until my late fifties (when God totally surprised me by bringing an amazing husband into my life), I can assure you that if God’s plan is for you to remain single longer than you expected—or even for a lifetime—your life can be as meaningful and blessed as that of any married woman. Yes, there will be challenges (as every married woman faces), but He really will give you daily grace for whatever you may encounter.

The fact is, loneliness is an inescapable reality in a fallen, broken world—whether you’re single or married! But if you will set your heart to seek God and His will above anything and anyone else, we can promise that you will never be truly alone, and you will never lack true joy.

Can we encourage you to press into trusting God with your purity and future marriage?

If this resonated with you, I would encourage you to check out the updated version of Lies Young Women Believe, available now! In it, Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth and I share the most common lies young women believe—along with the Truth that helps you battle them. We hope this book encourages and equips you on your journey to freedom. You can find it for 25% off using the code LIES25 HERE.

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Have you ever believed this lie: “God is not enough?”

You might not think that you believe God is not enough. We talked to over 1,000 teen girls about the lies that were making them feel depressed, lonely, angry, stressed, hopeless and a lot of other terrible emotions. Most of them knew that God should be enough, but they found themselves holding out for something more:

If I just had a friend I could count on, that would be enough.
If my parents let me stay out late, that would be enough.
If I got into my dream college, that would be enough.
If I had a boyfriend, that would be enough.

In the end, 88% of them agreed that they believed the lie: “God is not enough.” In fact, it was the most commonly believed lie young women were struggling to overcome.

We have struggled with this lie, too! I, Nancy, went through a hard time when a close friend and mentor died; another moved away, and a third friend was removed from my life through a tragic circumstance. I was devastated. For the next several months, I struggled with feelings of disappointment with God and battled some intense doubts about my faith.

Finally, as I began to cry out to the Lord, He showed me that I had been looking to my friends to meet my needs and to fill the deepest places of my heart. I discovered that by putting people in the place of God, they had become idols in my life. I began to realize that there was no human (or anything else) on the planet that could truly satisfy my unfulfilled longings. I discovered that I was insecure because I was placing my trust in people, who could be taken away from me, rather than in the One who never changes and who will never leave me.

That desperate season proved to be a huge turning point in my life. I repented of my idolatry and asked God to show me when I was expecting others to meet needs that only He could meet. He brought me to the place where I could honestly say:

Whom have I in heaven but you?
And there is nothing on earth that I desire
besides you. (Psalm 73:25)

God is enough; He will meet your needs and wants to be your closest confidant. His Word promises: “And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19).

  • He is the One who can heal your heart when it is broken (Psalm 147:3).
  • He is the One who can encourage, guide, and protect you. (Psalm 121:7)
  • He is the One who can make you feel safe when others fail you. (Psalm 27:10)
  • He is the One who can make you feel valued no matter what you can or cannot do. (Matthew 10:29–21)

We get to know our friends better as we spend time with them. The same is true about having a friendship with God. As we spend time reading and thinking about what He’s saying to us in His Word, or as we pray or meet with others to worship Him or study the Bible together, our relationship with Him grows deeper. The more you get to know God, the more you see that He is the only one who can meet your deepest needs.

If this resonated with you, I would encourage you to check out the updated version of Lies Young Women Believe, available now! In it, Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth and I share the most common lies young women believe—along with the Truth that helps you battle them. We hope this book encourages and equips you on your journey to freedom. You can find it for 25% off using the code LIES25 HERE.

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The Bible tells us that Satan poses as an “angel of light” (2 Corinthians 11:14). Ezekiel 28 tells the story of how he asserted his claim to be like God. He is the Impostor. And his motives are malicious through and through, as Jesus Himself pointed out:

“The devil . . . was a murderer from the beginning,
and has nothing to do with the truth, because there is no
truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character,
for he is a liar and the father of lies.” (John 8:44)

Satan’s native language is lying. He speaks through different mouthpieces, sometimes using evil rulers, false religions, social media, Netflix, popular songs, or even friends to deceive us. But all lies originate with him.

Why does he lie to us? John 10:10, which refers to Satan as the thief, suggests that his ultimate goal is our destruction. The ultimate fruit of his lies is death. We begin to experience the results of this “death” before our hearts stop beating. Look at God’s words to the first man:

“Of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil
you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it
you shall surely die.” (Genesis 2:17)

What did God mean when He said they would die on the day they ate of the forbidden fruit? Eve clearly didn’t die physically the day she first sinned. However, the moment she took a bite of that fruit, she did die spiritually—she was separated from God, who is Life.

The Tree of Life was now off-limits, and she was banished from paradise. She would now be a slave to her own sinful, selfish desires and choices. She would bear the consequences of living in a fallen, broken world, rather than enjoying the eternal pleasure of life in Paradise. She and her husband would have to endure pain and hardship as they fulfilled their basic responsibilities related to family and work. With each passing year this hardship would take its toll on their bodies, and they would eventually experience physical death.

What a vivid picture this is for us.

The moment we believe and act on a lie, as Eve did, we begin to experience consequences. We become increasingly enslaved to false, destructive ways of thinking and living. This may show up with symptoms like on-going depression, unreasonable stress, or an overwhelming sense that you don’t have any friends. Satan’s ultimate goal is our destruction and death. Not just physical death some day in the future. He’d like to make you a part of his walking dead on this earth, not free to enjoy God and life as He created you to live it. You see, zombies are more than the bad guys in scary movies or on Netflix. Walking around enslaved to fear and death is a very real lifestyle for many.

There is good news. Jesus came to give you life, and He wants you to have it to the full. Let us help you experience joy, contentment, passion, energy, and life the way God designed. See you back here next week for more Truth that will set you free!

If this resonated with you, I would encourage you to check out the updated version of Lies Young Women Believe, available now! In it, Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth and I share the most common lies young women believe—along with the Truth that helps you battle them. We hope this book encourages and equips you on your journey to freedom. You can find it for 25% off using the code LIES25 HERE.

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From the time she was in junior high when her parents divorced, Erin Davis struggled with panic attacks. They came mostly at night and were spurred on by horrific nightmares. When she awoke, sometimes she could barely breathe. She dreaded going to sleep because she never knew when she’d wake up in the middle of the night and feel suffocated by fear. She went to college and married her high school sweetheart. Together, they ministered to the youth of their church, but Erin hid the fact that she was still plagued by panic and fear.
Worn down and completely exhausted, she finally asked some friends to pray with her about what might be causing these recurring, sudden bouts of paralyzing fear. The friends asked what kinds of thoughts ran through her mind during her panic attacks. As Erin shared what she felt during those times, it became obvious that her panic attacks were reactions to thoughts and underlying beliefs that simply weren’t true. Her feelings were very real, but they were based on some pretty serious—and destructive—lies. Lies like:

Lie #1: Everyone leaves.
Lie #2: I have to take care of myself.
Lie #3: I can’t wear my heart on my sleeve or it’ll be crushed.

It was easy for Erin’s friends to see that these statements were contrary to God’s Truth, but she needed to see it. As they prayed together, her friends asked her to consider what God would say to her about those things. Here’s what she concluded.

Lie #1: Everyone leaves.
Truth #1: “I will never leave you or forsake you.”

Lie #2: I have to take care of myself.
Truth #2: “Be still and know that I am God.”
(Erin realized she was trying to play the role of God in her own life.)

Lie #3: I can’t wear my heart on my sleeve or it’ll be crushed.
Truth #3: “They will know we are Christians by our love.”

In case you didn’t catch it, the truths Erin concentrated on in that prayer time are powerful Scriptures right out of the Bible. These verses became the focus of her prayer team that day. Over the next few days, she continued to meditate on those verses as she began to “reprogram” her thinking.
The results were amazing! When Erin drove home a few days later, staying in a hotel alone along the way, she slept peacefully without nightmares or panic for the first time in a long time. Her parents are still divorced. She still struggles with fear at times, but it rarely rises up as powerfully as it did night after night for almost ten years.

The lies she believed at one time put her in bondage. It was God’s Truth that set her free.

 

If this resonated with you, I would encourage you to check out the updated version of Lies Young Women Believe, available now! In it, Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth and I share the most common lies young women believe—along with the Truth that helps you battle them. We hope this book encourages and equips you on your journey to freedom. You can find it for 25% off using the code LIES25 HERE.