When I was in junior high, my mom read, And The Bride Wore White, by Dannah Gresh. She felt a burden to share what she had learned with me and my friends, and so she began planning a purity retreat with the girls in my eighth grade class. As a thirteen year-old girl still uncomfortable saying the word, “sex”, I was definitely not ready for my mom to be talking about it with all of my friends. I didn’t speak to her for a month.
When I was in high school, my mom brought Dannah and her Pure Freedom team to our town to put on a purity event for teen girls. As a stubborn teenager myself, I was not a fan of my mom organizing a “purity talk.” After she left for the event that day, I put on my lowest-cut shirt and a scowl and sat with arms crossed through a good part of that weekend.
I say all that to give you a little taste of what my ever-patient and persevering mother had to go through during my teen years, and also to show you a bit of God’s sense of humor, because wouldn’t you know it, ten years later I am working for Dannah and helping to organize the events that I was once loathed!
And now, here’s my little plug: You don’t want to miss this event! Trust me. For all my balking and pleading and scowling as a teen, God got through to me. He used Dannah and her books and teachings to instill in my heart a passion and desire for purity. I’ve watched so many others take their purity for granted only to realize too late what a precious gift it is. What a blessing to be able to say that, by God’s grace, I have been spared that pain and heartache!
Working behind the scenes at the Pure Freedom events, I have a unique vantage point. I see a lot of girls come in at the beginning of the night who remind me of myself when I was that age. They walk in with arms crossed and scowls on their faces and plead with their mothers to let them go home. The wonderful part, though, is that I get to watch a brilliant transformation take place over the course of just a few hours. By the end of the evening those same girls are laughing, crying and praying with their moms. I get to see wounds healed and relationships restored. I get to watch God take the hardest hearts and turn them back to Him.
One of the saddest things I hear all the time from women at the end of an event is, “I wish I had known how good this was going to be! I would have invited more people. I would have made my daughter come.” Please don’t miss out on this, and don’t let your daughters miss out either! I thank God for giving me a long-suffering mother who put up with so much abuse, yet would not give up on me. One who was willing to say, “Yes”, to God no matter how much grief or heartache I put her through. Who knows where I might be if it weren’t for her firm and tender love pushing me to reach for more, to settle for nothing less than God’s best in my life. I know it can be hard, and your daughter probably has a special knack for pushing your buttons, but please don’t give up on her or let her argue her way out of this event. Take her and watch God work in each of your lives. You will be blessed!
I am especially excited to kick off this Pure Freedom tour season because our first event will be at my home church, Calvary Chapel Santa Barbara, on February 1. If you are nearby, please come out! I promise it will be a night you won’t want to miss! Click here for details.
If California is a little too far for you (although we have a mom and daughter coming to this event from Iowa, so you really have no excuse!), make sure to check out our tour schedule to find an event near you. I hope to see you there!