Act like a lady. Land a career. Find a man. Learn how to cook. Rear amazing kids. Oh! And be sure you stay thin.
Pressure to perform and conform starts early in a woman's life and never stops. In attempts to compensate and keep up appearances, we lose our ability to keep in touch with the truest parts of ourselves. We put on masks and hide the painful parts of our stories. If we get a quiet moment, we are ambushed with doubts: Who am I?
This book serves as a companion as we find ourselves, our sense of community and our identity in God. Designed to take you deeper with God on your own or with a group of sisters, journey alongside experienced ministers Adele Ahlberg Calhoun and Tracey Bianchi into some of the places where women struggle—no matter what their age or life-stage. Personal resources like journaling questions and a small group guide help women support each other on the way. These pages offer a reminder that there is a beloved, "true you" waiting to be known in each of us and that a world in need awaits the unique stories that each of us were made to tell.
Will you use your voice?
Adele Ahlberg Calhoun (MA, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary) has worked in Christian ministry for over forty years and is currently copastor, with her husband, Doug, of Redeemer Community Church in Needham, Massachusetts. She was formerly pastor of spiritual formation at Christ Church in Oak Brook, Illinois. She is the author of Spiritual Disciplines Handbook, Invitations from God and the coauthor of True You and Women & Identity.
A retreat speaker and trained spiritual director, she has taught courses at Wheaton College and Northern Baptist Theological Seminary. In the early 1970s she helped pioneer student work with the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students in Southeast Asia and the Middle East. She has also worked with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship in New England and Canada and with the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students in the West Indies and South Africa.
Tracey D. Bianchi (MDiv, Denver Seminary) is a freelance writer, speaker and pastor. She serves as Pastor for Worship and Women at Christ Church of Oak Brook, where she leads a team that creates contemporary worship each week. She is the author of Mom Connection: Creating Vibrant Relationships in the Midst of Motherhood, the featured MOPS International book of the year, and Green Mama: The Guilt-Free Guide to Saving the Planet .
Tracey has been serving in ministry ever since college and is a featured author and speaker for MOPS International and a member of the Editorial Advisory Board at Christianity Today’s Gifted for Leadership. Her work has appeared in a wide variety of publications including Leadership Journal, The Washington Post, MOPS International's MomSense, Proverbs 31 Magazine, FullFill Magazine and more. In 2012, Christianity Today noted Tracey as one of "50 Women to Watch, Those Most Shaping the Church and Culture."
An active participant in faith-based environmental conversations, Tracey serves on the Synergy National Advisory Council as well as the Board of Directors for the Evangelical Environmental Network. Her hope is to engage in the hard but good conversations about grace, peace and all that is possible if we let God lead the way. She lives in Chicago with her husband and three kids.