Vonda Skelton: Setting Women Free
By Paula Friedrichsen
CBN.com Vonda Skelton is a sought after speaker for women’s events and writer’s conferences, a children’s book author, a registered nurse, a wife, mother, and grandmother. She recently wrote Seeing Through the Lies (Regal).
On a warm Monday morning in the middle of August, I had the pleasure of interviewing Vonda about her book. I found her to be charming, exuding warmth and humor, and full of laughter. If you read my review of Seeing Through the Lies, than you know that I loved this book! So sit back, grab a cup of tea, and join me as I talk to Vonda Skelton.
Vonda, thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to talk to me. I so enjoyed reading Seeing Through the Lies and I’m wondering what motivated you to write this book?
Well, I wish I could say that I had a huge revelation from God and that I immediately knew He wanted me to write this book for women. But the truth is, I had never considered writing a women’s book! I had been speaking at ladies events around the country for years, when a well-known Christian women’s speaker asked me why I didn’t write books for women. I fumbled around with an answer that was something really profound like, “I don’t know. I guess I’ve never thought about it.” She said, “Vonda, you have something of worth to say, something women would be encouraged by. Why do you want to limit it to those you speak to?”
In Chapter 3 you address the subject of guilt. At one point you write, “Which of the 'Four Basic Guilt Groups' has consumed you today? If you’re like most women, you’re sure you’ve eaten too much, loved too little, mothered too heavily, and worked too lightly.”
My question for you is how can women effectively resist guilt, and learn to enjoy their lives in the midst of imperfection?
You might not like to hear this, but I used to hate the Proverbs 31 woman. (Well, maybe hate isn’t the word, but you know what I mean!) I imagined that superwoman of sainthood sitting on my shoulder, pointing out all my many frailties and comparing them with her endless attributes. No matter how hard I tried, I could never measure up. She was picture perfect.
And then one day while studying the scripture, I realized that the Proverbs 31 woman wasn’t a real woman! Yes, she was perfect, but she was only a picture! It would be like me saying to my girls, “Look, if you could find a man who is rich and kind, who has a great job making great money, who always gets things right and who can do it all—that’d be awesome!” But we all know that man doesn’t exist…and neither does the perfect woman. Yes, we should strive to have as many of those characteristics as we can. Yes, we should seek to honor the Lord by being the best example of womanhood we can possibly be. But failing to be her doesn’t mean we’ve failed to be the person God created us to be!
So instead of trying to do it all (and feeling like a failure because you can’t), focus on what you can do, and do it as well as you can. I had to finally accept that I’m not a home decorator; I do better with kids than teens; and my house will never pass the white glove inspection.
But I also know that our home was a fun place where kids liked to gather and they never cared if the plants were watered or the floor was polished. They knew they were loved.
Forget guilt. Remember grace.
In Seeing Through the Lies you aptly discuss the issue of “beauty.” How can women resist the unrealistic pressure toward beauty and youth?
In today’s culture, beauty is everything I’m not! Beauty is tall. Beauty is un-dimpled skin. But most of all, beauty is young. Me? I’m barely five feet tall, cushioned in cellulite, and haven’t been called young since George H. W. Bush was president!
I remember the first time I realized I was losing my youthful edge. I was driving and my teenage daughter was in the passenger’s seat. We stopped at a red light and I noticed a young man sitting in the car to my left. He smiled and waved. Of course, I didn’t wave back, but I smiled to myself, sighed deeply and thought, “Yep. I’ve still got it.” I turned to smile at my daughter and found myself in the middle of a non-verbal stoplight interlude between this young man and my teenager. It’s been an uphill battle ever since.
But if I could encourage women in their beauty, it would be to embrace who they are. Embrace who God created them to be. When we criticize ourselves about how we’re made, we’re saying God didn’t do His job right. Now, that doesn’t mean we should just become slobs who won’t do anything to take care of ourselves, but the focus needs to be on a healthy body. After all, I Corinthians 3:16 tells us that our body is the home, the temple, of the Holy Spirit.
To read more from Vonda Skelton pick up a copy of Seeing Through the Lies: Unmasking the Myths Women Believe.
Read a review of her book
Read an excerpt from the book
Visit Vonda's Web site
More book excerpts and author interviews on CBN.com
Blog: Book Bytes
Paula Friedrichsen is a writer and speaker who lives in Central California with her family. Visit her Web site at www.PFMinistries.com.
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