As the main session started on Thursday night, Nancy Leigh DeMoss challenged us to a media fast for the entire duration of the conference. What a great idea! No e-mail, no Internet, no TV the entire time we were there.
You know what...I really had no idea about anything outside of those walls of the convention and it was a great way to stay focused.
John Piper began the conference with his talk: The Ultimate Meaning of True Womanhood (You can listen HERE then click on John Piper)
These are straight from my notes and my mom's notes:
- A woman on her knees sways more in this nation than hundreds of suited, Wall Street jerks!
- Wimpy theology makes wimpy women!" The opposite of a wimpy woman is not a brash, pushy, loud, controlling, uppity, arrogant, amazon. The opposite is a woman who stands strong, perseveres to the end, praising God, without bitterness and anger.
- Wimpy theology does not give a woman a God big enough, strong enough, good enough, wise enough to handle realities of life in a way that enables her to magnify Him, and His Son, all the time. It's plagued with woman-centeredness. There is no granite foundation, steel structure of a great God centered purpose...
- The solid steel structure of God's ultimate purpose in all things..."To display the Glory of God's grace in its highest expression, in His dying, to make a rebellious people, His bride!" Everything exists so that that can happen! Especially...you! He bought the rebellious Bride, by the slaughter of His Son. Unto the praise of the glory of His grace!!!! Rev. 13:8, Ephesians 1:5-6, 25-27.
- When you arrive at the Praise of the Glory of the Grace of God there is nowhere else to "arrive." There is nothing on the other side of that design! You're home, that's it, there is nothing more in the universe to do or to be!
- What does that mean for True Womanhood? It's not wimpy to say that God created the universe, and governs all things to magnify His own grace in the slaughter of His Son for an undeserving people that that people might become His everlastingly happy bride. That's steel, that's granite, there is a place to stand when everything around you gives way! God's grace shines off of our lives when we stand on that granite and steel!
- Masculinity and femininity, manhood and womanhood, belong at the center of God's ultimate purpose...they're not an afterthought of creation, or the cross, not peripheral to the design of what is being said when Jesus dies to magnify the grace of God, they're right there at the center, at Calvary!
-Be done with small thoughts about God's design for Womanhood. We have a curse on human nature called: triviality. It's banality, it's living every day as if TV mattered, here today, gone tomorrow...then eternity, and the things that are unseen matter!! Rise to the significance of what matters in the world.
- You can transform every simple diaper moment, or any other moment, into massive significance if you realize that your womanhood is here, being brought to the very center of the purposes of God in this universe...climaxing when Christ the Husband, bought His Bride.
- Gen. 1:27..."God created man in His own image, male and female, He created them." We make a mistake when we think, God created us that way, then later, He sends his son to die for sinners and created people for himself, then thought, I'd like to make this work so, Oh, look, there's marriage, that might work, I will apply marriage to the meaning of what my Son has achieved...that's not how it happened.
- When God designed in His own eternal mind, humans, male and female, when He thought about that, He had in his mind, already the cross...that's why He made us the way He made us..it wasn't an afterthought. Here is how we know that...Eph. 5:31 Paul quotes Gen. 2:24 Before the fall, the first marriage...v.32, "this mystery is profound"...man leaving, cleaving..."and I am saying it refers to Christ and the church."
- Thousands of years before there was a cross, God said about manhood and womanhood, "this is about the most important event in history, that's why I made them this way!" In marriage and in singleness, displays the most important thing in the universe...my Son, sacrificing His life for His wife!
- True womanhood is a distinctive calling of God to display the glory of God, the glory of His Son, in ways that would not be displayed if there were no womanhood.
- This means that if you try to reduce your womanhood to physical features or biological functions, and then determine your role in life purely on the basis of competencies, you not only miss the point of womanhood, you diminish the Glory of Christ in your own life.
- Your distinctive female personhood is indispensable in God's purpose to display the fullness of His glory. It's not incidental to your personhood, it exists because it's God's designed relationship to the central event in history, the death of His son.
- What does that look like for marriage and singles?
1. Wives submit to your husband...as the church submits to Christ, so wives should submit to their husbands in all things. Marriage is meant to display the covenant keeping love and grace that exists between Christ and his church. That ultimate meaning of headship is no more interchangeable than Christ and the church...men take their ques from Christ as the head, woman as the church, called to admire and stand in allegiance to Christ. Men have the greater burden and responsibility.
- Submission is the divine calling of a married woman to honor and affirm her husband's leadership and help carry it through according to her gifts.
- If we can embrace this truth, as married women, this magnificent truth, that True Womanhood ultimately means our distinctive role in marriage is meant to magnify the glory of God's grace, supremely expressed in the covenant keeping love between Christ and His church we would have a compass with which to navigate through life. It's not a small thing to believe that Ture Womanhood is meant to display the glory of God's grace in the sacrifice of God's son and purification of his bride...living out life in pure joy reverencing Him
- Singleness: brings radical freedom to serve the Lord! Why does God take some out of marriage, when marriage magnifies the covenant keeping love of Christ and the church?
- Since the fall, the natural order is not absolute as in "it's not good for man to be alone"...there is now sin in the world. In this world there are truths about Christ and his kingdom which can be more clearly displayed in manhood/womanhood in singleness. How?
1. A life of Christ exalting singleness bears witness that the family of God grows by regeneration through faith not propagation through sexual intercourse. That's the main family we're about! You magnify Christ in ways no married woman can.
2. Relations in Christ are more precious and permanent than relationships in families.
3. Bears witness that marriage is temporary and gives way in the end to the relationship of Christ and the church. Marriage is not the main thing...it's momentary! A single woman who lives with that final day in view and finds Christ to be here all in all here, says something powerful about her Savior.
- DO NOT WASTE YOUR WOMANHOOD ON WIMPY THEOLOGY.