I would just like to say that your ‘test’ is an absolute disgrace. [Referring to “The Good Person Test” available at Way of the Master]
Could you imagine a child looking up his or her favorite “Full House” actress, taking that test, and being frightened to her soul that she will suffer in Hell?
Children don’t understand the terminology used in this horrid test, Candace. You were a child star; you must understand that your fans are children. Children are still seeing reruns of your sitcom on television; you are still 13 years old to them. These are the people searching for your website, not grown adults looking for holy answers on DJ Tanner’s website.
I would appreciate a response for my daughter’s sake.
Thanks for visiting my website. I’m sorry “The Good Person Test” offends you. I admit, it offended me too, until I understood God’s grace and mercy. It was a tool that helped me get right with God, and I have it on my website because it has encouraged others to do so as well. I do understand that not everyone agrees or sees eye to eye on the Bible, but there’s no question as to the God I serve. I’m very upfront about it as it’s the first thing talked about on my home page.
I do have a lot of young fans but even more adult fans, who grew up with the show and follow me through my ministry career. (I know this by the amount of emails I receive and whom they’re written from.)
I’m not D.J. Tanner, but Candace–a wife, mother, speaker and actress. My website is not a fan site for Full House, but a website about my life today, and one that I hope reflects my relationship with Jesus Christ.
As for children not understanding terminology–I beg to differ. My children are 5, 7, and 9 years old. They know well the words of the Bible, who Jesus is, sin and its consequences, heaven and hell, grace, mercy and His unconditional love.
I hope that any children who are of a young age surfing the internet would not be doing it alone. If you are concerned about your daughter seeing the test, hopefully you will filter the things in which you don’t want her to see and will be alongside her while she surfs the net.
Again, the “Good Person Test” is on there because I see value in it, and have had some amazing testimonies from people who have read it, are thankful for it and have sought out God because of it. I hope this has shed some light on your concerns.
(Visit www.wayofthemaster.com if you’d like to take “The Good Person Test”)
First off I just want to say what a true blessing you and this magazine are to me! So thank you so much for your time and great words!
Lately it seems like I have a hard time letting go of the sins I have committed in the past. I know I have been forgiven due to asking God for forgiveness and basically saying that I am sorry, but I still think about things I have done, and it brings me to tears sometimes.
I re-dedicated my life to God a few months back. I have been visiting churches in my area (I recently moved from my home town so I have been praying that God will find me a church in my area). But it’s been hard, trying to back away from “worldly” things that are out there.
I was brought up in a Christian home. My grandfather is a preacher at the church I went to in my hometown, and at age twelve I was saved, by asking God into my heart and forgiving me as a sinner. When I graduated from high school and started college, I started going down the wrong path, and then I would feel guilty and ask for forgiveness. It wasn’t till a few months ago that I realized I needed to change and start putting God first in everything I do. I know that if we ask God to forgive us, we are forgiven but how do I shake this feeling of “why did I do that?”
I have been reading my Bible and I just got the book you recommended: The Way of the Master. Any advice you have would be great!!
Thanks for your email. I’m so glad you’re enjoying this column and CWO, and it’s good that you got The Way of the Master, because that’s the book I’d recommend reading.
I suspect you’ve never come to a place of Godly sorrow–I’m talking in tears, on your knees, over the sin in your life. It’s a place so deep inside of you, where you understand how offensive you’ve been toward God. Then understanding what He did for you on the cross and His grace.
I know you know “all the words” and what they mean, but I don’t know that you’ve been affected by it in your soul. It didn’t happen for me until after I read The Way of the Master. Maybe this will trigger it for you too, or maybe it will be something else.
In any case, once you’ve experienced Godly sorrow, you can come to a place of true repentance. Asking God to forgive you, and turning from your sin. See, it’s not just about feeling guilty over it and confessing it, but feeling so sorrowful that you don’t want to do it anymore. When you’ve asked for that forgiveness, it’s been given to you. There’s no reason to wallow in the guilt, that’s not going to do anything. You have to trust that once you’re forgiven, you’re forgiven.
“Therefore, my brothers, I want you to know that through Jesus the forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you.” – Acts 13:38
Move on, and move into a right relationship with God. Dig into the Word to better know Him, and what He wants to do with your life.
I just started a Bible study group (women only) at my home. I read that you are in a weekly Bible study group, so I wondered if you could give me some suggestions on what materials would be good to use with our Bible study?
How does your bible study group work? This is new for me and I kind of lead it, so I didn’t know if I should get a Bible study book to go with what book of the Bible we would study, or if there is a better option.
Also, could you recommend any books of the Bible that would be good to read for our study group? I appreciate any information.
Thank you for your time and consideration.
You have amazing options, and a ton of choices in how you’d like to lead your study. Our group has done it several different ways over the years and I don’t know that one stands out for me over another. I’ve learned so much from each one, and every style had a uniqueness that made it special–it’s probably because it’s the Bible–the most interesting, exciting, and active book you’ll ever read!
I don’t know how well you know your Bible–and this may determine how you lead your study. If you’re a beginner I suggest your group studies off of a “Bible study” book. There are several choices at local Christian book stores, or online at www.lifeway.com.
You may want to start with a study on the book of John. John–not to be confused with John the Baptist–is commonly considered Jesus’ closest friend. You’ll be familiar with the new testament stories, but you’ll have a more intimate look at who Jesus is as only a best friend could share.
Each girl should purchase the Bible study book, and complete one chapter per week at home. At the start of each study, begin with prayer then go through the questions you answered from the week and discuss them. A lot of great conversation will stem from this.
If you want to jump into the BEST bible study (in my opinion), your group will have to shell out a few dollars to chip in for Beth Moore’s Daniel study. This is a DVD set along with a Bible study guide book. I love Beth Moore’s style and enthusiasm. I’ve never retained as much information as I did from this study because she’s that good! It also comes with a teacher’s guide (that’d be for you!) to help in instructing and moving the group along in a timely format.
If you don’t want any money involved to purchase books or DVD’s, you can choose a book of the Bible and go through line by line or chapter by chapter. Here are a few questions to ask yourself and look for when reading the scriptures to help dig in.
Is there an example to follow?
A command to obey?
A sin to avoid?
A promise to keep?
Currently, we are doing this style of study on 1 Peter. We chose 1 Peter, not only because it’s a great book, but also because it’s short. This type of study involves a lot of time to really dig in, look up definitions, and use a concordance to reference other scriptures. This is a wonderful way to study, but I must say it helps to have someone who’s knowledgeable and familiar with the Bible. I don’t think my group could study this way if it weren’t for our leader Debbie. She’s awesome!
Since this is your first small group and you’re heading it up, I suggest you choose a Bible study book or DVD set and pick a topic of interest for your whole group. You can study a book of the Bible or a topic of interest like being a godly wife, parenting, overcoming strongholds etc. As the leader, go to your bookstore or online, and choose 3 study guides to suggest. Vote on which study the group would like to do, then have each person purchase their own book.
You’ll be blessed in your efforts to study the Bible! And don’t be surprised at your rapid growth in your walk with Christ.
I had an opportunity to see you give your testimony on this year’s Girl’s Get-A-Way Cruise. I remember that there were several questions that you asked yourself prior to accepting or rejecting a job offer. I am in a similar situation with my current position and would like to know what those questions were. Thank you for your testimony. You were such a blessing on the cruise.
The most important question I ask myself when faced with a life-changing decision is: Will this be pleasing to God?
Then ask yourself more detailed questions like:
Will the new job be pleasing to God?
Will it glorify Him?
Can I see His hand in it?
Can I see purpose in it? Or is it something to take my mind off Him?
Will it take up more hours only to distract me from Him and my family?
Weigh the benefits and the disadvantages from God’s perspective, not your own desires. Most importantly, pray about it and seek advice from the Word.
Hope this helps,
I am a mother to three kids. My daughter, age 4 and my sons, age 2 and 7 months. I know they are similar to the ages that your kids were a few years ago.
I find myself being overwhelmed with things to get done on a daily basis. Between taking care of the kids and trying to keep the house clean, I don’t feel that I ever have time to just, enjoy my family.
So, my question is, how do you get everything done? What have you done to make family time easier without falling behind on other things?
Thanks in advance!
I remember those days. I’m not that much ahead of you, but let me assure you, it does get easier!
I don’t think there’s much time to sit and enjoy everything when the kids are those ages. I don’t mean to be a bummer, but let’s face it–it’s hard. There isn’t much time for anything other than keeping up with the kids, and cleaning up their messes. It takes a lot of patience, a lot of deep breaths, a lot of prayer, and as many hot baths alone that we can get!
I did it–without a husband most of the time, because he was on the road, playing hockey. I never had a nanny, but I got a babysitter every now and then to spend some alone time with my husband, and to get that much needed deep breath.
Don’t ever feel guilty or bad about having a night out without the kids. In fact–you should! Having a date night with hubby at least once a month (once a week is even better!) will refresh you, recharge you, and help you to enjoy the time you spend with the kids.
I was always advised to involve the kids as much as possible with the daily chores. In the beginning, it will be harder; they end up making the process slower since you’re teaching and they’re learning, but in the end, it will go a lot faster when they’re able to set the table, sort laundry and wash dishes. It is good advice, but I never had the patience for it! My kids do those things now, but I have to admit it’s with moans and groans. I guess I didn’t make it “fun” from the start. Maybe you will!
I don’t have any radical advice. Take lots of pictures to remember it all. 😉 When the youngest is four, it gets easier. Everyone can walk, talk, listen and take direction–much easier!! You’ll be able to sit and enjoy your family, and hear all of the stories about school and life, that your kids will be eager to tell you.
Be brave sister, and keep on! Enjoy that laundry time–sometimes it’s the only 20 minutes you’ll spend alone during the day!
I have read that your husband is the head of your household and I agree with that, but has it always been that way? When we first got married my husband did not know how to balance a check book and stuff like that, so he wanted me to do all of it. I would like him to make more decisions and feel comfortable with them.
I want to help him understand more about Christ, and for him to be the head of our household without making him feel that I just don’t want to take care things. Please advise.
My husband was made to be a leader. There’s no getting around it for me. Because of that, it does make it easier for me to follow since he has a dominant personality. But I know several wives whose husbands are on the laid-back side, and want their moms–I mean wives–to do most everything.
Don’t worry though; he can still lead your home. Start by praying for your husband to be the spiritual leader of your household. Pray that he would come to know Christ. Pray that God would work on you to be the wife He’s called you to be. You shouldn’t be afraid to sit down and have a chat with your husband. In love, tell him that you respect him as the man of the house and you would love for him to make more decisions for the family. Just remember not to balk at him if he makes lousy ones in the beginning. This will only make him feel disrespected and he’ll eventually tell you to just keep doing everything since he never seems to do it right. He’ll need your support and encouragement. Don’t nag or get upset. If he isn’t used to leading, he’s not going to magically become a great leader overnight. It will take time, effort on your part, as well as patience and a lot of prayer.
As far as certain jobs around the house, there are some things you may do better, and that’s OK. Like paying the bills. I pay the bills in my home too. Yes, my husband knows about our finances and oversees all of it, but as for writing checks, filing and organizing, I’m the woman for the job. Val delegated that duty over to me because I’m better at it. If your husband isn’t comfortable with managing money and you’ve been gifted in that field, it’s OK to make those decisions. Just make sure you put aside time with your husband to present him any major changes in the budget and discuss new investments you may be thinking of. Make sense?
I hope this has helped.
My husband and I have been married for four years. He has never been a Christian, but I have–even though I have backslid several times. We go to church and I am very happy about that, but I was wondering, could you give me some pointers on how to get him more interested in Christ?
So you want to know how to get him more interested in Christ? Well, I’ll start by saying that when our interest in Christ is something so special and different, over time others might be drawn to it. What I mean is, that when a Christian is walking with the Lord there is usually something special about them, and if an unbeliever sees this difference in us, they may want to know what it is!
You said you’ve backslid several times. Most of us have, unless we came to Jesus for the right reason in the first place. Sadly, many churches entice us with the, “Jesus has a wonderful plan for your life…” spiel, until the going gets rough, and we wonder why we ever came to Jesus in the first place.
I was a backslider too; it wasn’t until I read The Way of the Master by Ray Comfort, that the gospel message hit me between the eyes. I’d then understood for the first time, my serious NEED for Jesus.
It’s hard to attract someone to something if the person trying to attract isn’t that excited about it in the first place. Did that sound confusing, or what? What I’m trying to say is, work on your relationship with the Lord first. Concentrate on being a godly wife. Make Christ-like changes in your own life that would make your husband wonder why he’s the luckiest man in the world to have such a wonderful wife. What made her change? Why is she so different? It’s then that you can gently tell him, “It’s Christ living in me.”
Actions speak louder than words. Let your actions lead him to Christ. I always suggest joining a small group Bible study with other women. It’s the best way to get into the Word and start understanding it.
I hope this has helped.
Thank you for introducing me to this beautiful magazine! I need something like this.
I was wondering if you have any material for middle-school-aged children on dressing modestly. I am working at a middle school, 5th-8th grades, and they are having a terrible time with teaching these kids to dress modestly. We cannot say anything about God, which is so sad. But I thought maybe you could help me out. Thank you and God bless you!
I’m glad you’re enjoying CWO Magazine!
It’s crazy and shocking how some kids dress today. What’s even sadder is that parents allow it. It’s an uphill battle when God is not part of the equation; nevertheless, it’s still one to be addressed. Thanks for having the courage to do so!
There is actually a GREAT book written for young women on this very issue. It’s called For Young Women Only by Shaunti Feldhahn and Lisa A. Rice. I had the pleasure of endorsing the book. Of course it’s Christian based, but you could pull some great things from it without talking about God at school.
The original one they wrote was For Women Only and was such a hit, they addressed one for younger girls. It talks about what guys are thinking, and what goes through their brains when it comes to looking at girls and how guys think in general. Perhaps you could purchase a copy and share it with the class.
Hi Candace, I’m a 29-year-old wife, and mother of three beautiful children. I have been raised in church all my life. We never missed a service. Every time the doors were open my family was present. Not only did we stay in church, but the life my parents and grandparents live are Christ-like, they have set the very BEST example anyone could for me, and still yet I struggle. I don’t understand it.
I have the desire so much to follow Christ with all my heart and to seek what it is that He has for me. I want to be an example for my children to follow as they grow up. I know that kids are more likely to do, as they see done, and not as they’re told. I feel as though I’ve lost my fire. I want to love the Lord with all my heart, and with all my soul and with all my mind. I just feel lost sometimes.
I feel as if I don’t recognize myself anymore from the young girl I once was. When I was in Bible College I was on fire. I read my Bible every day, and I had the desire to sit down and sup with the Lord. I feel I’ve lost that fire, or I feel as a mom that I just can’t find the alone time with Him. It’s so hard for me to let others take care of my kids and help me with things so I can fellowship with the Lord.
We’re new to the church that we are attending now, and my husband and I don’t agree 100% on the style of church we should attend. I want so badly for us both to be involved in church, but he doesn’t see it exactly the way I do. Please can you give me any advice on my rambling? 🙂
I’m just a normal everyday country girl, and so I’m not really good at writing a story, but I know where I need help and I saw your website and thought I’d ask you. You and your brother are an inspiration to me. I grew up with watching you on T.V. and it’s so exciting that now we can share the same faith. Thank you for your advice in advance.
Thanks so much for your email. I too have times in my life where my walk with the Lord is on fire only to have the heat turned down for a few months. I wonder why this happens myself. But rest assured, it happens to most of us. I don’t ever lose my love for the Lord, but my zeal…yes. I get caught up with Val, the kids, summer plans, school, traveling, speaking–all the things that are important, but only to take my attention off God for a while. And I hate when I allow everything else to take priority over my time with God.
It’s like Paul said in Romans 7:15 “For what I am doing, I do not understand. For what I will to do, that I do not practice; but what I hate, that I do.” (I encourage you to read Romans 7:13-25).
I too have not spent the time I wanted to and should have this summer with the Lord. And I’ve felt my flame get dim. My dear friend lovingly tells us in our Bible study group every so often to keep our eyes fixed on the Lord so we don’t get off track. She relates it to swimming in the ocean. If you ever have, you’ll know that the current will continually push you left or right. You have to keep your eyes focused on your spot at shore (where your towel is- or in our kids case–mom and dad) or else you’ll lose site of where you are as the current sweeps you away. It’s never intentional, but nevertheless, it happens.
We need to do that with God. Keep our eyes fixed on Him, because with our every day activities we get swept up in our tasks and lose site of our place with Him. Getting that flame lit? Well, if you’re anything like me, I start praying about it every day when I realize I’m slipping. And when I get to the point I don’t think I’ll get revved up again, the Lord tugs at my heart. He often takes me to a place of emptiness for me to know that only He can fill me up. And there’s nothing like a good gut wrenching sermon to give me a humbling kick in the butt to remember what Christ did for me.
Most importantly, you HAVE to schedule time with the Lord. If it means waking up a half hour early before you get the kids up, then that’s what you do. I know I have to hit my knees as soon as I roll out of bed each morning or my day just won’t be right. I don’t always read the Word first thing, but I make sure I put aside time every day for it. There’s no way around it. If your kids are napping or entertaining themselves for a few minutes, you have to take that opportunity to read God’s Word or pray. The laundry will still be there in 15 minutes; it’s not going to run away. 🙂
Also, I think summer time is hardest for me because that’s when my Bible study group takes a break. All of us travel, so we resume when school starts. I realize how important my small group is, meeting each week at my home. They help keep me accountable and focused.
So I would encourage you to find a small group Bible study through your church, or if you know 4 or 5 women that would be interested in meeting at one of your homes each week. Fellowship and study with other believers is something I believe God intended for us to do.
Church styles? Try to find a church you’re both happy with. I’ll tell you to lean towards your husband’s style if it doesn’t kill you. Better to go to church together with a style you’re not as impressed with than not go at all. But I cautiously warn you to make sure it’s a solid Bible teaching church. If it doesn’t hold true to the Bible, then I would continue looking for a church. You can find an article on how to find a good church on my website.
I hope this helps and is an encouragement to you. 🙂
I know you don’t usually get email from guys, but I have a problem that perhaps you can give me some insight over. A couple of years ago–about a month after my dad passed away–I went back to college. Not knowing anyone there, I prayed that God would bless me by giving me a friend to talk to. On the second day of class, He answered my prayer when I met this nice girl. We soon became great friends, and she was like a sister to me. We would talk about everything. I was so grateful that God had blessed me with such a special friend. I even went to her wedding, which was a huge honor.
My problem is this: last winter, I had a misunderstanding with my friend. It’s resolved now–I hope, but I still feel bad about it because the last thing I had ever wanted to do was cause trouble in our friendship. I worry a lot that although it is resolved, our friendship will never be as close as it was.
We don’t email each other as much as we used to, and I really miss her friendship. Please don’t misunderstand, I only think of her as a friend and as a sister. God blessed me with her friendship when I needed it the most, but since our misunderstanding, I feel like I’ve let her down and failed her as a friend. I’m not sure if our friendship will ever be the same.
Do you have any advice for me to first-not feel so guilty about the misunderstanding, and second-not to worry so much about our friendship. Thank you so much for listening. May God bless you!
Thanks for your email. You were right, I don’t a lot of emails from guys–it’s nice to receive a question from you.
I don’t know that the advice I’ll offer will be much different from some you’ve probably received. While the details of the misunderstanding are irrelevant, you’ll have to be at peace with it if you’ve talked about it from your heart and apologized. There’s not much more you can do unless there is still something that wasn’t discussed that is nagging at you. Only you know that answer.
I’ll have to say that as soon as I read she got married, I thought–that’s it. Even though what you have is only a friendship, once a girl gets married, even her best friendships with men will never be the same. Her husband is her man above all now. She can’t and shouldn’t tell you all the details, intimate thoughts, dreams or goals you may have once shared. Even hanging out and just chillin’ together doesn’t happen so much because that’s what her husband is for. Her husband should be her new best friend. It’s hard; I understand. It’s probably not as easy for her either. I know because had a guy for a best friend and it had to change once I got married. It simply isn’t fair to her husband. You would never want to be a source of jealousy in their relationship.
While the friendship is super important to you, I’m sure things will change for you too when you meet your wife. You’ll want to spend all of your time with her. Be patient and just let your friend know that you’re there, but give her space to care and nurture her relationship with her husband. And above all, don’t drown in guilt over things of the past. Your guilt won’t do anything but simply bring you heartache. If you have a clear conscience before God, move on.
“Anxiety in the heart of man causes depression, But a good word makes it glad.” Proverbs 12:25
I am a 24-year-old wife and mother. While I have always had faith in God, I was not raised in a religious home. I have recently started to feel my heart being called to the Lord, although I’m not sure what direction I should be going in or how I should begin my path.
I was baptized in the Methodist faith as a baby, but my family was not practicing while I was growing up. My husband and I have started attending church on Sundays with our baby since I started feeling this calling, but I’m confused about finding the right faith within Christianity.
Is it as simple as being a Christian, finding Jesus and letting Him fill your heart, or should I be seeking a specific denomination? And how will I know it when I find it? Since I know He is reaching out to me, how can I best serve Him as merely an average wife and mother?
Thank you for any advice you may offer.
I’m so happy to hear the Lord is drawing you close. Praise Him!
Finding the right faith…it sounds confusing, but it’s not as hard as it seems. Being a Christian isn’t about finding the right sect of Christianity or denomination, but it is about knowing the Lord God, repenting of sin, surrendering to self and living your life for God–giving all glory to Him.
Yes, different denominations hold different rules, traditions and even interpretations of the Bible. So how do you know what’s right? The more time you spend with Him–in prayer and reading the Bible–the more you’ll know Him. If you are attending a church that doesn’t teach the Bible, you’re in the wrong place. Sadly, so many churches are about tradition and works, and that’s not what Jesus preached.
You’d better believe you can serve God in the biggest way by being a godly wife and mother!! Don’t think for a minute there is anything average about that. It’s exactly where God wants you to be, serving your family and training your children up in His way so they’ll know the God who gave them life–the God who suffered on the cross for their sin, so they too can be in Heaven if they live a surrendered life to Christ.
I’ve posted an article at my website, written by Todd Friel on the topic of how to find a good church:
I hope this article will help you find the right church. And I’d encourage you to read The Way of the Master by Ray Comfort. You can purchase it at a local Christian bookstore or online at www.livingwaters.com
First of all, I’d like to thank you for your incredible example as a contemporary woman who puts Christ first in her life. Your role as a wife and mother, and strong morality in regards to your acting choices, are truly incredible. Your story is a beautiful example of the glory of devotion to Christ.
I ask for your advice on an issue that I’ve been struggling with for almost a year. I’ve prayed on it, and feel that your kindness and knowledge of the Word would be a great attribute to solving this issue I have.
I’m a 20 year old, Pre-Law student at the University of Iowa. A year ago I began talking to the man I want to spend the rest of my life with. John is currently in his first year of study at the Irish Bible Institute, working on earning his degree in Applied Theology, and hopes to attend seminary in the relatively near future.
A few weeks ago, I went to your website, and after reading your advice column regarding submission, truly feel that my life has changed.
At the time, I was dealing with a great deal of strife over financial matters regarding my university studies and felt tremendous anxiety. After reading your words, I began to re-read a book that John gave me by Rob Bell titled Sex God: Exploring the Endless Connections Between Sexuality And Spirituality, and within a few hours, I finally realized that the Lord will take care of me and that my life belongs to Him–I am here to serve Him and spread His word. I can’t even express how much joy I’ve felt as I gave my biggest worry up to the Lord. I now read the Word every day in devotional format, as well as from inspiration from books by authors like Don Miller, and in my constant conversations with John about his studies.
Your complete openness in expressing your faith, combined with the expressions from other devout Christians, has made such a difference in my journey with God. I still have so much to learn, but I look forward to growing with
God and hope to make as much of a difference in others’ lives as you’ve made in mine.
My question actually regards John. I’m sure you’ve been asked this before, but I’d really love to get your take on it. John and I–thanks to our 4000-mile separation–rarely get to spend time together in the same place. As a result, when we are together, we struggle with the physical side of our relationship. I know what the Bible says, and I don’t disagree in the least, but I still struggle with keeping purity before marriage.
Thanks to our educational commitments on opposite sides of the Atlantic, John and I won’t be able to get married for at least three years. This makes our struggle even greater at times as we have such a long road before we can be joined before God and our friends and family. Culture seems to be so intolerant of virginity. When the subject of sex is brought up by one of my friends, and I tell them that John and I are waiting until we’re married, the reaction is typically “…Sex is healthy and meant to be enjoyed–you’ll regret only being with one person.”
When I try to explain it, I can never really explain why this choice is so important. I’m frequently asked if my fiancé is gay and doesn’t want to admit it, and if I engage in other sexual behavior. I’m so frustrated with defending my virginity, and this makes my struggle even greater. My question is this: how do I express that my decision is an important and willing one in a world that is so insistent upon making sex as insignificant as a broken crayon? What are some practical ways to spread the message of purity without alienating people to the point of them not listening?
Thank you so much for listening to my story and question. I feel so blessed to have stumbled back to your website, as it has been the catalyst to re-dedicating myself to the Lord. I pray every day that your personal ministry, and that of your family, be strengthened and continue to flourish.
Thank you again, sister!
Thank you so much for encouraging me in my ministry, and thank you for all of your prayers. I hope that I can offer you words of encouragement as well.
I can’t imagine how difficult it is to “wait” 3 years with the man you want to marry, and I applaud you for doing so. I don’t mean to sound old, but peer pressure stinks.
My advice… why do you have to defend yourself to them? When I know someone isn’t willing to listen, but only give their worldly opinion to me, I don’t bother fighting back. I don’t think it’s being weak, but being wise. The only thing that comes from it is unbiblical advice creeping into your head. Don’t bother.
On the other hand, if someone is genuinely interested in knowing why you’re waiting till marriage, tell them. It shouldn’t be a difficult answer. It should be because you want to do it God’s way.
There are a number of places in the Bible that tell us to wait. The biggest one being the 7th of the 10 commandments, “You shall not commit adultery.” You can read what Jesus says about it in Matthew 5:27. I would also encourage you to read through Proverbs. There are many wise sayings that will keep you encouraged and strengthened each day.
I think it’s incredible that you have a man who wants to wait. That’s hard to come by! Hold on tight because he sounds like a man of the Word and one that you’d want to lead your home. I know you will both be blessed if you do.
Although I haven’t read her story, I know that Rebecca St. James talks about abstinence, and maybe her book would be helpful. I also read Tammy Trent’s book Learning to Breath Again that is very powerful.
Don’t let your peers get the best of you. That’s exactly what the enemy wants. There are reasons why God designed sex and marriage the way He did. Satan got a hold of it and has twisted it over the years–keep reminding yourself of that.
As far as spreading the message of purity… let your actions–or lack of–talk. Your testimony of staying true to God’s ways will speak louder than words. You won’t be sorry. There is so much pain that comes from sex before marriage that not many people share or even make the connection to. God will bring both of you through it, and what a party He’ll have for you when you’ve reached it in His time!
Lastly… if you’re hanging out with all sexually active friends, you also need to have a few that hold the same principles as you do, and keep each other in check. I’m not saying to only have Christian friends… but you need a few strong ones around you that will hold you accountable. That’s what friends are for.
I just read about your brothers website on Yahoo–a ministry of some kind. I read it, out of curiosity and then decided to see if you also believed as Kirk does.
I was wondering–and excuse my stupidity here–but what makes you desire to live the way you are now, compared to the riches of your TV status? What does God give you, in life, that’s better than what you have with television and movies and such?
As I was watching on the Internet of your brothers website, I had to hang my head, thinking whatever he believes, and lives has to be totally unconforming to the way you both were as actors. What could be more than that for you guys?
I know this is quite the odd question, but I’m trying to figure out what draws you guys to God, especially being so successful in life, the way you were.
I just don’t know that “draw” I suppose, and can’t see the lure in it.
Thanks for your question. Not to sound like a Hallmark card, but there is so much more to life than success and wealth, fame and riches. The “draw” for me is my eternity. Life is short. All of us will eventually die. So the question becomes where do I want to spend my everlasting eternity: Heaven or Hell?
Being a Christian and living a life that’s pleasing to God doesn’t mean it’s a drag. I haven’t lost out on anything–I’ve only gained perspective on life, peace, joy, fulfillment and purpose. It is God who gives me all those things.
It’s something the world can never fulfill because it constantly begs you to get more, reach a higher level and keep acquiring more… and more… and more. It never satisfies. It keeps you focused on what you don’t have, what you should have and how you can get it. Everything to take your eyes off the fact that there is a Holy God to whom you’ll be accountable to on Judgment Day.
The peace and joy in my life? It’s not because God makes my world perfect. I still go through some of the same struggles and hardships that I have in the past. But my peace and joy is in knowing that God is with me always and I can rely on His strength to bring me through it. It also means that no matter what happens now, no matter how bad it is–it won’t compare to what’s to come in Heaven. I have that joy to look forward to.
I know that this may sound silly to you, or like a fairy tale that comforts me if life isn’t as good as I was hoping it would be, but it isn’t. I know that I know that I know, the Bible is the written Word of God. It’s worth your eternity to look at it and read what it says.
Hi Candace! I just wanted to ask you for suggestions. I have a 13-year-old daughter that I think refuses to get saved. The rest of our family–being a 16-year-old sister, a 14-year-old sister, a 12-year-old brother, mom and myself–all profess CHRIST as our savior. We all go to church and all the kids are active in youth group.
My oldest daughter and my wife try to talk to my 13-year-old about being saved, and she won’t say anything. Youth leaders and other teens in the youth group witness to her, but she still won’t say anything and she won’t even talk to me about this issue. My oldest daughter has your brother’s movie, “Left Behind,” and the 13-year-old will not watch it. Even though we’ve tried to get her to watch it several times, she goes into the other room.
She loved watching you in “Full House,” along with the other girls. Do you have any suggestions? I am hoping that hearing from a role model such as you, might show her the need of being saved. If you have time to write her a letter that would be awesome or if you could send an e-mail of encouragement that would be great also. I am looking forward from hearing from you.
Thanks for your question.
I know in raising my children, the very core of my efforts is to see them come to Christ. I’m sure it’s difficult to see one of your children unwilling to have a relationship with Him. It’s wonderful that your other children already love the Lord, but don’t lose hope.
The first thing I want to encourage you and your wife to do is not to pressure your daughter. While it’s our responsibility to show them Christ, it’s not our duty to get them to make the commitment. That must be the work of the Holy Spirit in them. I’m sure the pressure from mom and dad, and brother and sister may be causing her take a few steps back.
I think it’s actually a good thing at this point that she doesn’t give into the pressure. Don’t get me wrong; I want to see her soul saved as much as you do. But God says in Rev 3:15-16 “I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot. So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot I will vomit you out of My mouth.” Better that she’s cold now and doesn’t make a decision for Christ just to get her family off her back, only to go running in the opposite direction once she’s 18; or worse, becoming a lukewarm Christian for the rest of her life. The best thing you can do is to continue to pray for her salvation daily, and live a life pleasing to God, being an example. Continue going to church and make her go as she’s 13 years old and is still under your authority. Let her know that the door is always open and you’ll be there to talk with her about God when she’s ready. Love on her; don’t be frustrated with her. I know your love and commitment to her as a father and from her mother will go farther than any pressured words.
Also, if she is a Full House fan, you can purchase my testimony CD at www.livingwaters.com or DVD at www.worldviewweekend.com. You could give this to her as something to think about, but again, let the Holy Spirit work in her. Don’t ask her 20 questions after she’s listened to it. It’s all in God’s timing, not ours.
Hi Candace! I just read the weight-loss question you answered, and wondered, what did you mean by “giving your food issues up to God”?
I am a married mother of four and I am having such a hard time! (I am on Weight Watchers)
By “food issues” I meant some unhealthy eating habits I’d acquired in the past. For me, the only way to get past my abuse with food was getting serious about it with God. I needed to constantly pray that I’d stay away from unhealthy alternatives, and that I’d eat right, and exercise instead.
This sin was one that I loved and didn’t want to give up. I was scared. I constantly wrestled with it. And I knew it was keeping me from a closer relationship with God, and that I had to give it over to Him.
I said to Him, “I can’t do this on my own. I’m willing to take a step in faith to stop doing it the wrong way, knowing with all my heart that You will provide me the willpower to say ‘NO’ or give me a way out”.
That was the last time I was ever going to pray it. I didn’t want that struggle for the rest of my life. And while my view of food is not problem for me anymore, it’s an area I always have to keep close at heart, and pray about. I know the enemy is lurking, waiting at the door to creep in.
I think going on a diet like Weight Watchers is GREAT to learn portion control and to retrain yourself to eat properly. Food is a hard battle for most American’s since we have such an abundance and it’s so readily available to us. Stick to a plan and keep God close by your side.
I saw you on TBN the other day (with your brother Kirk) and decided that I would see what I could find out about your acting career. I was excited when I saw you had a spot for Acting Advice, but was disappointed that it is still under construction.
As of last December (through an amazing sequence of events) it seems that God is calling our 17-year-old daughter, Heather, into acting–at least for now. We are committed to helping her pursue this training and
experience for this coming year–since the rules all change when she turns 18. She has been attending classes and has her first background opportunity at the end of this month. The hard part is that there is little information about the movie and its rating at this stage of the project.
Our concern and biggest struggle is that there is no clear
line/guideline on where to draw the line for a Christian. Did you find yourself involved in things that you later wished you had known more about, and stepped away from? We believe God has led us this far (to be salt & light), but it is just all so out of our usual comfort zone.
Any input you have would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks for visiting my website. I’m happy to share my thoughts with you on the entertainment industry as a Christian.
Working in television and movies today is very difficult as a Christian. You were right in saying it’s not clear where to draw the line. You’ll have to use your conscience and much prayer on this one. Yes, there have been a few things I’ve worked on and have regretted since becoming a Christian. There’s no turning back, but now, having a biblical worldview, my decisions are different and my options are fewer.
An agent will tell you that as someone who’s starting out, you can’t picky about what you work on if you want to establish yourself. Most agents and managers will push your daughter to audition for everything and will encourage her to take what she can get. Most will tell you to compromise on the small stuff now and if she starts working regularly and develops a name for herself, she will have more opportunity to pick and choose then.
As a Christian, you MUST be picky. You don’t want to compromise your moral standards for some time in front of the camera. And you certainly don’t want to work on something that could lead a searching soul astray. This is why it is very difficult to be a Christian in the entertainment business. Most TV and movies today don’t uphold the standards that we value as Christians.
My advice is to find an agent that is fully aware of where you stand morally, and that you’re not willing to allow your daughter to go on auditions if they compromise that in any way. Honestly, it will be hard to find an agent willing to work with you because there are so many talented actors who are willing to do anything. They may say “that’s fine” in the beginning, but eventually it will get old for them. I don’t want to sound completely discouraging…there are some good ones out there! You’re just going to have to do some research and find them. My mom was one of them, having her agency for 15 years (she’s retired now).
If an audition comes along and there isn’t much information on it, get the sides in advance. If the material is questionable, call your agent and pass on it. Keep everything in prayer. Most of all, talk to your daughter and make sure she fully understands the seduction of the entertainment industry. We can’t be salt and light if we become like everyone else.
On a positive note, studios are making more faith-based films since the success of Passion of the Christ!
As I was looking through your website, I noticed that you are a stain removal expert! Do you have a remedy for mustard stains?
My daughter, Keelie Grace had a fight with her hot dog at school last week, I guess, because she came home wearing more mustard than she ate. It was so sad though because it was the first time she had worn this new outfit, and she looked so precious in it.
But now, I cannot get all of the mustard to go away. Do you have any suggestions?
Again, thank you, you are truly an inspiration!
Mustard stains–oh, that’s tough! If the outfit is white, there’s always the bleach pen. If not, here’s what my trusted little stain remover book says: “Wash item in cold water while rubbing with laundry bar soap. Soak 12 hours in the soapy water. Or, apply rubbing alcohol and launder as usual. Glycerin applied to the stains may also do the trick.” i
My favorite stain remover is “Zout”, not to be confused with “Shout.” Spray some on and use a toothbrush to work it in. Keep washing and washing… Don’t put it in the dryer until the stain is completely out, otherwise it will set it and that will be it!
I have read some of your advice articles at CWO and was wondering if you could share some of your insights regarding my situation.
I truly embraced my heart for the Lord around age 23. I started going to an evangelical church and was surrounded by some of the most genuine people I have ever met. I met my husband there and we were constantly serving at the church or spending time in small group or worshipping. Just before we were married in 2004, we moved for work and were excited to attend my husband’s former–much larger church.
From the moment I set foot in that church, my spiritual life and my fire for the Lord started to decline. My husband had been in a relationship years before when he was in OH and still had many friends who were members of the church.
One couple was very welcoming to me, and I actually lived with them before my husband and I were married. The other people, however, were nothing but cruel, even though my husband considered them great friends at the time. Several of them tried to break up our wedding, which of course they did not succeed in doing, but they did succeed in causing a rift between both my husband and I and myself and the church.
I was only about a year into the Christian faith, when all of a sudden people at church–a people that are supposed to welcome you with open arms–were trying to stab me in the back. After a rough first 9 months of marriage, we received a letter stating that yes, they were indeed trying to break us up because it was more convenient for their lives if my husband was back together with his ex girlfriend, because they knew her and just wanted things to be the way they were before.
I am pregnant with our frist child to be born this summer. I want more than anything to raise our child in a Christian home, knowing the love of God and being able to see that love shared between us and others. I know that it will take a lot of hard work to get back to a place of trust with the Lord and other Christians, but I do not know where to start.
I try to read my Bible and cannot seem to focus on it. I used to lead worship, but cannot bring myself to pick up my guitar. I used to love to hear teachings by my husband in small group, but find myself cutting him off whenever he goes on a “religious tirade” now. I was just wondering if you had any advice on HOW to forgive these people. I know that my heart will always be guarded and closed until I forgive them, but I see their actions as purposely evil and knowing that they are not the least bit sorry for the pain and hurt they caused me makes it very difficult to even think about forgiving them and moving on with my life.
Thank you very much for your time in reading this. I don’t expect you to have all of the answers, but any new insights into how to regain my fire for the Lord would be greatly appreciated. I feel like I have exhausted every avenue I can think of and do not want the rest of my marriage or my child’s life to be without God as the center.
Thank you for writing to me and being so honest in your email.
It sounds like you were in a very difficult situation and yet I can see God’s hand in bringing you back to MD to start new. Deep wounds are hard to heal; nevertheless, “with God all things are possible!” (Matt. 19:26)
In the past when I thought about people who hurt me, I wanted to cling to my hatred and anger towards them. My flesh wanted them to feel the same pain they caused me. In my heart I knew God wanted me to forgive them. I knew it was the “right” thing to do, but why didn’t it make me feel better? My forgiveness would have only been out of obligation and not from my heart.
It wasn’t until I had a strong relationship with the Lord that I saw clearly. I now understand why forgiveness does make me feel better and why I don’t want to hold on to my bitterness. You won’t be able to forgive until you are seeking God. Only through your relationship with the Lord, will you find true healing.
I think about what God did for me on the cross: His sacrifice for me and the forgiveness He has extended to me. And when I look at the depths of God’s forgiveness, it humbles my heart to tears. I don’t deserve His forgiveness. I’ve failed over and over again in trying to measure up to His standard of the 10 commandments. I have treated my ratty old t-shirt better than God at times. How offensive is that?
Yet, God has mercy on my soul, He loves me no matter what, He promises me eternal life with Him–all of these things that I don’t deserve! Since I gave my life to Him, He’s wiped my slate clean. His forgiveness and renewal is endless. God is so gracious. If God can have that much forgiveness and mercy on me, then why shouldn’t I extend the same forgiveness towards others? Am I better than God? NO! Of course not!
Also, it seems to me that you feel God is to blame in some part of this. That He forsook you. He didn’t. It’s sad when “Christian” people give true believers a bad name. I used to be one of them. I called myself a Christian for years even though I was living in sin. And there are many people out there that simply label themselves Christian because they attend church but are not producing the fruit that true Christians are known to produce. God doesn’t want to see your marriage crumble. He’s not working against you. Don’t believe the lies of the enemy that would have you think otherwise.
I strongly encourage you to start going to church again. You aren’t going to move ahead if you don’t give this over to the Lord, ask Him to forgive you of the anger you hold towards those people, and allow God to deal with their consequences. Also, I’d hope you won’t hang it over your husband’s head that you were right and he was wrong about them. Your husband knows, and you should move on, not allowing any deep seeded bitterness to sprout up from time to time when things are tense. I have a favorite book that helped me see the kind of wife God wants me to be called Created to Be His Help Meet by Debbie Pearl. This would be a wonderful new start for you. It is so important that you and your husband build your marriage on the right foundation–God’s Word. Start with prayer.
Also, please listen to “soundly saved” at www.wayofthemaster.com or buy The Way of The Master book by Ray Comfort. This book, like the Bible is sure to ignite the flame for God.
Blessings to you on your journey.
I really enjoy reading your advice column at CWO. What a wonderful resource. Thank you for being the God-centered, Christ-loving woman that you are!
I too, am a mother of 3 young children. Between Bible study, homeschooling and caring for my home and husband, I struggle to find the time to exercise and eat properly. I wondered what your secret was to being so slim and healthy?
My secret to staying slim and healthy is (drum roll please!)…eating well and staying active.
OK, I know that was a pretty simple answer, but it’s the truth. Over years of being on a weight roller coaster, I finally got to the point where I wanted to stay fit and feel good ALL the time. I always feel healthier and prettier when my weight is lower, and of course my clothes fit better. I had to change my eating habits and lifestyle once and for all. Luckily, my husband was 100% on board and was probably the biggest encourager to our family in this area. So, eating habits changed not only for me, but for my children and my husband.
As I’ve said here before, consult your doctor before choosing any diet or fitness routine, then consider what’s best. For me, the key has been eating fresh, healthy foods and not over eating. I’d prefer to eat more of the yummy foods I enjoy in smaller quantities, rather than eating large portions of ONLY healthy foods that I don’t really enjoy. For me, eating is about the taste and not the quantity. A lot of woman I know are just the opposite, where quantity is important, rather than quality. You have to figure out what is important to you and get into a new way of eating from there.
Include your whole family. If you just try to diet on your own, it’s not going to last for very long. If you change your whole family’s eating habits and fitness/sport routine, you’ll have a better chance at sticking to it.
I take pilates about 3 times a week as well as play tennis, and I walk about 1 1/2 miles every day (around my neighborhood). The kids either walk with me or ride their bikes. This turns into family time not only to share and laugh, but also exercise. (When the kids whine about walking the circle… telling them “no desert” usually quiets them up pretty fast.) And FYI… desert is usually fresh fruit. They have ice cream or something sugary sweet once or twice a week. (And we keep that to a small portion). Trust me, this makes the once a month trip to Cold Stones–for whatever they want–all the better!
Ultimately, I had to give my “food issues” over to God. There are bad habits I’m prone to repeating, but they never make me feel good for long. That’s when I ask myself, “Is food or God more important to me?” This usually stops my bad habits as well.
I hope this helps and encourages you.
With great interest I’ve been following your website and reading your advice column here. As a young woman of the same age as you, and with a similar background in acting and upbringing, I’ve felt best able to relate to your story of seeking out a more truly Christian lifestyle and searching for greater meaning and discipline to my life.
I was just about ready to “make the leap” and seek out some of the resources you’d recommended, when I read something that made me doubt my ability to blend a Christian life with the convictions of equality I’ve been raised to believe in. Convictions that now, as an elementary school teacher, I try to pass on and stress to my students each and every day as I attempt to help them build their confidence and sense of self.
You gave advice to a woman who was trying to come to an agreement with her husband about homeschooling. You wrote that in the end, the husband is the leader of the family and should make the final decision.
I was raised to believe that men and women are equals and should act as partners when married. I also believe this demonstrates to children that women shouldn’t be submissive and that their opinions are as worthy as that of males. I know that to suddenly change my way of thinking that my partner’s opinions should be the final ones regardless of compromise would leave me feeling disrespected and unsatisfied, and I would hope through compromise my partner would never feel this way in return, either.
If it is true that it is suggested that men dominate the “power” role in the modern family, I’m not sure if my yearning to walk a similar path to your’s is right for me after all, and I feel more confused than ever. I have put acting behind me and am enjoying my career as a teacher, and look forward to marriage. Will it be possible for me to dedicate my life to Christ if I don’t feel “right” putting my partner on an uneven plane as myself?
Thanks if you are able to help me sort this out.
Many women in today’s culture struggle with this very thought and subject, so you’re not alone. It is our society that’s got it messed up and has confused us all. Just because you were raised a certain way and brought up to believe certain things, it doesn’t mean they are right. Let’s look at the Bible for answers.
Marriage is an equal partnership in that BOTH roles, husband and wife, are equally important. But, they are not designed to be the SAME role. The Bible says, “For the man is not of the woman: but the woman of the man. Neither was the man created for the woman: but the woman for the man” (1Corinthians 11:8-9). In Genesis, God created Adam and said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make a him an help meet for him”. (Gen. 2:18) See, we were CREATED to be a helper to our husbands.
“Submissive” is not a four letter word. Today’s culture would have us believe it is. That is straight from the mouth of the enemy. Being submissive to my husband in no way makes me feel disrespected or unsatisfied. I haven’t turned into a door mat that gets walked all over. Just the opposite! As a submissive wife, I have a great responsibility and role in my marriage. Yes, I’m the second in command but does that make my role less worthy? No.
Think of it in military terms. You have a commanding officer and a soldier. There is a chain of command. Does that make the soldier’s role less important? Of course it doesn’t. If everyone was a commanding officer, there would be chaos! Same thing in your household. Having two heads of authority doesn’t work by design. Once a conflict arises, you will both stand on your principles until someone compromises, or worse–not, and the other will feel defeated. Most likely it will be your husband who’ll do the compromising because it will be easier to give in than listen to his unhappy wife. This cycle will continue on in your marriage, only to have your husband feel he’s incapable of making good decisions for your family, that you don’t respect him, and ultimately find himself looking for a woman who will. I know that sounds harsh, but why do you think the divorce rate gets higher and higher every year?
I take joy in serving my husband. He does not take advantage of me. I don’t become his slave. I help him because it pleases the Lord, and ultimately, THAT is who I care about most. When I love, honor, respect and help build my husband into the man God wants him to be for our home, he has so much love for me in return. He WANTS my opinion, he trusts me, he takes my advice and asks what I think on just about every subject. This trust has been given because of my attitude when it comes to his decision making. We talk, we share, he knows what’s important to me. He ALWAYS takes that into consideration. I’ll tell you, most of the time, my husband will yield to my direction on the subject because he values it so. But, when he believes a different decision to be right, I allow him to make that final decision and not say anything more about it. I don’t let the disappointment show on my face for the next few days. I don’t whine and complain about not getting my way. And I CERTAINLY don’t rub it in his face if my way would have been the better way! I’m right there by his side to help him make a better decision the next time around. (Trust me… when things like that happen, they’ll listen to you even more next time!)
Ultimately, my husband is responsible for all the decisions made in our home before God. He’ll stand before God to give an account of our family. That’s a weight lifted from my shoulders and yet such a hefty responsibility for my husband. I want to do everything possible to see us succeed together.
“But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God” (1Cor. 11:3) Do you see the chain of command? Even Christ is subject to one higher than himself–God! Why then, should we feel that we deserve to be equal with everyone else? Are we not subject to Christ as well? Again, this is society’s view that’s got us all confused. I choose to allow my husband to lead because I want to do it God’s way. I gave up “my rights” when I gave my life over to the Lord.
I could write pages and pages on this subject, but there just isn’t enough time in the day. This answer is not complicated because scripture is abundantly clear when it comes to the role of being a wife. Read Titus 2. If you are seeking God and His ways…. you can’t pick and choose what makes you feel good or more comfortable. God is a God of Truth and has written His ways and ultimate design for our lives in the Bible. While the subject seems to be a stumbling block for you in knowing the God who created you, it’s clearly an attack to prevent another soul from being saved. Before you give up on a right relationship with God because of this subject, seek the scriptures. They are TRUTH. God can open your eyes spiritually if you’ll ask Him.
My recommended reading for you is: Created to Be His Help Meet by Debbie Pearl and Lies Women Believe and the Truth that Sets Them Free by Nancy Leigh DeMoss.
May God give you the clarity you need to know His ways.
Im a busty woman, who wants to wear cute clothes but can’t because most of them are really low cut or really tight. There’s a couple of halter top dresses I want, but I am not sure what to do as a Christian young woman.
Also, how do you stay strong in your faith? I love God with all my heart but won’t bring myself to read my Bible or pay him any attention because I’m “too tired, sick, not in the mood…” Any advice on it?
I love fashion! Because shopping is my specialty (wink wink). I know there are many choices for all body types that are trendy, classic, funky, or whatever your style is, that are still modest. The key to finding those pieces are to TRY TRY and TRY them on! I know most of us gravitate towards the styles we’ve worn before and feel comfortable in. I think it’s important to go shopping with a trusted friend who’s opinion is honest and has some sort of fashion sense. Try things on you wouldn’t normally try. You’ll be surprised at how something looks on a hanger and then on your body. Try new shapes, new colors–and go a size bigger. (Seriously, the number on the tag doesn’t matter. Only you know what it is!) Not all tops and dresses out there are tight, and going up a size may help if it’s form fitting but not meant to show every detail of your body.
Try new stores! I love department stores because the selection is usually big and varies from children, teens, women, petite and plus sizes. Step out of your comfort zone and dare to try on new styles. Don’t be bound to stay in the teen department just because you are one, or vice versa. You may be surprised at what you’ll find!
I also love shopping at boutique stores because you usually get personalized attention and they can help pick out shapes that fit you best. One more secret of mine–I’m a “Lucky Magazine” subscriber. This is a practical fashion and shopping magazine that can give you more ideas on what may fit your body the best.
As a Christian, modesty is very important. It’s something I struggle with at times because everyone’s view of modesty is different. I think a good rule of thumb is: if you wouldn’t feel comfortable wearing it at church, then don’t wear it! (Let’s not go overboard as to include bathing suits and P.J’s) But, I’m sure you understand what my point is.
The 7th commandment, “You shall not commit adultery” starts at lusting. Jesus explains this in Matthew 5:28. It’s important as women, that we don’t entice other men other than our husbands to lust over us. I know that some of this is out of our control, especially if you are an attractive woman. But there are things we can do to minimize any direct attention to our body parts by not overtly showing them off. It seems to me that you’re on the right path, as you want to stay modest and are inquiring about finding appropriate clothing.
As for halter dresses for busty women–this can be tricky. I have seen dresses in a halter style that cover all cleavage. You just have to search for it. You can always wear a halter style tank top underneath that would eliminate any cleavage showing if it’s V cut. A short jacket or wrap is also a good tool for extra coverage. Honestly, if you’re not sure and you feel even a bit uncomfortable that it may be too revealing, then don’t wear it.
A REALLY good alternative (for ANY body shape) is a wrap dress. These usually cover everything, flatter every figure and work for every age. It’s important not to wear what’s trendy if it’s immodest or doesn’t fit your body type just because it’s “in style” at the moment. Find clothes that suit you. Hope this helps!
As for staying strong in your faith, you said you love God with all your heart. Apparently not if you won’t bring yourself to read your Bible or pay him any attention. So many of us do love God in our hearts, but don’t want Him to be the Lord of our lives because it’s inconvenient. Please read The Way of the Master. You can purchase it at www.wayofthemaster.com. If this book doesn’t wake you up, I don’t know what else will. Loving the Lord isn’t just a feeling you have, it’s an act of obedience. You need to get right with God. Don’t wait. If you can’t buy The Way of the Master, then listen to a short sermon based on the book called “Soundly Saved” at their website.