Book Review: True Woman 101: Divine Design, by Kassian and DeMossBy Trillia Newbell | April 25th, 2012 | Category: Uncategorized | 1 Comment »
By Trillia Newbell
When a skilled artist paints a picture of a face each curve and shadow, wrinkle and spot are captured and delicately placed on the canvas. Skilled artists don’t take short-cuts or overlook the fine details of the subject they are drawing. When God created the world, he was detailed and thorough. But unlike an artist’s drawing, His was perfect. True Woman 101: Divine Design: an Eight-Week Study on Biblical Womanhood, by Mary A. Kassian and Nancy Leigh DeMoss, takes us through the journey of God’s design for women. What was once perfect has become tainted with sin; yet God still has a divine design.
True Woman 101: Divine Design is an eight week study on biblical womanhood. Each week begins with a theme which will be the foundation for each lesson for that week. Each day has an interactive lesson with questions. Here is the theme of each week and my take away.
Week One: Gender Matters
God created man and woman to display His glory and to put important truths about the gospel on display.
Week Two: Snips and Snails
Here we explore what it means to be a man, which is summed up by working, cherishes his own wife, leading, providing, and protecting.
Week Three: Sugar and Spice
Now we move to womanhood. DeMoss and Kassian share that women are to be soft. The Hebrew word for woman was ishshah. Scholars have determined that the meaning is soft. Other lessons in the week focus on women being relational, connectors, welcoming and nurturing, and being responsive.
Week Four: Snake in My Garden
This is where the perfection became corrupt. At this point we begin to explore the fall of man which is the reason for the “fractured unity between the sexes.”
Week Five: Battle of the Sexes
We continue to dive into the ramifications of sin. Sin has polluted our relationships with men, but women are not alone. Many women have suffered under the hand of sinful men. This pain is one reason women felt the need for liberation, thus birthing the feminist movement.
Week Six: Hear Me Roar
Feminism has laid a foundation for today’s woman, they argue. The cultures ideal and God’s plan are at odds with each other. The world is enticing and inviting women to eat the feminist culture but “smart girls” know that freedom, understanding and joy are found in Christ.
Week Seven: Total Makeover
We all get excited about a good makeover show. The most exhilarating part to me is the “reveal”, of course. God doesn’t have an ugly design for us as women. God’s design is beautiful. The prior week’s studies were the foundation for the meat and potatoes, which you begin to munch on here in week seven.
God wants us to be devoted, first to him, then to others. God desires that we have beautiful character which God lays out in his Word specifically in Titus 2:2-6, focusing on what older women are instructed to teach younger women.
They continue by looking at what it means to be gentle and quiet and lead-able. Their focus is on heart attitudes and not personality. Good news for all of us out there who are “loud”. A quiet disposition is peaceful and an amenable disposition is “lead-able”.
In the end the total makeover put true beauty on display. The beauty industry is a billion dollar money making machine. God calls us to invest in our souls and showcase His beauty in us and through us.
Week Eight: Sisterhood is Powerful
Here is where DeMoss and Kassian begin to teach us how to apply all we’ve learned in practical ways. Practical ways include: motherhood, hospitality, helping men serve where possible, and aiming to leave a legacy to the next generation.
Don’t Skip the afterword, “Different by Design”
Women are not all the same and DeMoss and Kassian recognize this. They aren’t encouraging cookie cutter Christian women, rather laying out the biblical principles and foundation for biblical womanhood. If you skip the afterword you may misapply the entire book.
In God’s design, he didn’t stop his creativity with man and woman. Each person is unique. Each woman’s application of biblical femininity may also be unique. Kassian and DeMoss call us to delight in the differences, to guard against the temptation to compare, and to be patient and gracious as women learn the beauty of God’s design.
In the end, we are reminded to marvel at the meaning and not so much the end. The meaning is the gospel on display. Think about and marvel in Christ’s great love for us that he would give up his life on a Cross.
True Woman 101: Divine Design is easy to relate to and filled with gracious undertones. It’s formatted to be a devotional and would be perfect for personal devotions or groups. The book assumes its reader is new to the concept of biblical womanhood (thus the 101) and really lays a foundation of basic truths. If you are a seasoned Christian you may find it to be a refresher and confirming.
I highly recommend True Woman 101 and believe it will be most helpful to young women and new Christians as an introduction to biblical womanhood. I also believe it would be a good book for pastors and men to gain an understanding of how God has designed women. This understanding would benefit churches and families.