Shaunti Feldhahn is a former Wall Street analyst, best-selling author of the book For Women Only, national speaker, and regular commentator in the media. She has been featured on The Today Show, PBS, TNT and Fox News- to name a few. You can learn more about her many activities by visiting her website Shaunti.com or get some great mom advice from her at MomLifeToday.com. She and her husband live with their two young children in Atlanta, Georgia and enjoy every minute of living at warp speed.
Life Ready Woman has been lauded by reviewers as an essential resource for navigating all the roles women play – wife, mother, worker, co-worker, single, etc…. Follow the links below to read the reviews.
More about Life Ready Woman: Are you a ‘Doing it all’ or ‘Do what matters’ woman?
Whether a stay at home; or working mom, an airplane-hopping executive, an empty-nester caring for multiple generations or a single juggling high demands of career and personal life, today’s fast-paced modern world leaves women gasping for balance. We as modern Christian women want to look to the Bible for guidance on how to manage our lives — but because the world of women looks so different today than it did when the Bible was written, it is hard to find chapter and verse that seems to apply to our situation today.
Well worth reading,by Marilyn Johnson
I’m glad that I read this book! I found the biblical perspective on gender, marriage and family presented in Chapters 4 and 5 to be simply outstanding. The authors strike a beautiful balance that is missing in so many treatments of this material.
The authors begin by discussing equality. Citing Hebrew scholars, ezer is defined as “‘a helper who is corresponding to him’ or `equal in power and ability to him’”. With respect to the activities that we engage in, Tim Keller is quoted as emphasizing that the Bible pictures both husband and wife as working and both husband and wife as raising kids. In summary, the authors conclude that both men and women are to: a) leave and cleave; b) be fruitful and multiply; and c) subdue and rule.
Complementing the material on equality is a beautifully nuanced discussion of gender and headship. The page 76-83 treatment of femininity includes an exegesis of Titus 2 that is quite simply the best application of that Bible passage to contemporary culture that I’ve read. The authors conclude this discussion by stating (p. 78) “[obedience to Titus 2] will result in bringing beauty and order and a civilizing spirit – something God says we as women are uniquely gifted to bring to the home and family unit.” Throughout, a beautiful vision of complementarity is presented. Yet, the authors don’t try to fit all women into the same mold – differences in personality and gifting are acknowledged.
However, I was less impressed by the rest of the book. The second half contains practical advice based on applications of the biblical framework in Chapters 4 and 5 to various life stages and situations. Too much of the material consists of well-worn platitudes – younger women need to choose flexible careers that allow time for husband and children, at all stages of life women need to use their gifts and abilities to minister to others, older women need to mentor younger women, etc.
And, much of the material in the first three chapters of the book disturbed me. The authors discuss the fact that women earn 60% of bachelor’s degrees, 60% of Master’s degrees, and 50% of professional degrees (pp. 11-13). Now, I’m as concerned about the decline in male involvement in higher education as anyone, and I welcome an analysis of how the educational environment on U.S. college campuses can be made more inviting to men. (Aside: Feldhahn and Lewis don’t provide such an analysis.) However, I was angered at the positioning of those statistics in the introduction to a book whose goal is to help individual women make wise individual choices. The implicit message is that individual women can stop these alarming trends by forgoing higher education.
This theme emerged again on p. 44, when a Christian mother is applauded for helping her daughter critically reevaluate her dream of becoming a doctor. The illustration concludes with the statement, “Imagine if more mothers were helping their daughters do this sort of due diligence before they sink large sums of money and time into a career path that may leave them disillusioned in the end.” Huh?! I know of few professions that provide greater opportunities for working moms to go part-time than medicine.
Worse yet, the original presentation of statistics on women’s participation rates in higher education (pp. 11-13) was immediately followed by a discussion of the decline of Western civilization. Again, the implicit message is that there is a link between women’s participation in higher education and a variety of alarming social trends. I found this material to be disingenuous and downright harmful. I was disappointed to see these themes from Lewis’ earlier work carry over to this book.
Finally, in the end, I was left with an unanswered question. What does Shaunti make of her own journey? The public record suggests that for many years she was/is the major wage earner in her family. She is better known in the public arena than is her husband. This could not have happened without significant sacrifices by her husband. Does she explain these sacrifices by referencing the importance of each spouse submitting to the other’s Kingdom impact? Or, does she believe that she took too much time away from her husband and children to write and speak? The tension between those two positions is an undercurrent throughout the book. In that sense, the book is very much a slice of real life.original review