"My heart was breaking for you and for all that your parents must feel reading this . . . ." I have been hearing, especially from women my mother’s age. They can not help but read my recently released book through a mother’s eyes.
Girl Perfect is a compilation of many pains, yes, this is true. But it is also a journey of many "freedoms." The pain came from never being able to be that "perfect girl" the world expected of me. And the freedom came from accepting my imperfections by experiencing the vast love that came beaming, then showering, then thundering down on me from the heart of God.
I remind each woman whose heart broke along with mine of the big picture – that my life is unbelievably beautiful and purposeful now and that I have been redeemed. God has used all the broken pieces of my little-girl heart to create a mosaic lantern of light and hope for the next generation of girls in search of perfect.
I get the pain. I do. In the book, I purposefully returned myself to those places of pain to speak understanding into the lives of girls suffering from sexual abuse, eating disorders, the trap of drugs and alcohol, the pain of dreams that seem to have been lost and futures that are bleak compared to the hopeful, sunshine-filled ideals of their youth.
But I went back to those places of hurt – over and over with each round of editing – in order to paint a clear picture of redemption for you, to paint a picture of how far God will go to rescue your daughter, sister, friend, mother, or you, from the darkest of nights, and how lovingly He looks upon us even in our deepest despair. I did it to say to you: I know what it is to feel trapped, violated, starved and alone.
And I know what it is to feel loved, valued, cherished and died for. I know what it is to be healed, made whole, filled and set free.So when I think about my own past, I choose redemption.
What about you? Are you choosing redemption? Are you laying it all at the foot at the cross and saying, I choose forgiveness, I choose freedom, I choose the cleansing blood that makes me white as snow, and I choose new life? Or are you holding onto the stuff that hurts, that makes you angry and bitter? Are you carrying it? Or burying it?
As one who has both "carried" and "buried," I speak from experience: lay it all at His nail-pierced feet and let Him take it for you, and choose redemption.
It will set you free!
WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING
At the age of 18, I was recovering from an eating disorder, cutting, and suicide when I read Jennifer Strickland’s book Girl Perfect and it changed my life. At the age of 33, as I travel the world reaching youth for the gospel, this is the only book I recommend to girls who are struggling. The Lord has truly anointed Jennifer’s words through her story, not only to address the struggles of today’s generation of girls, but also to walk them through the healing necessary for victory.
Jennifer is a captivating speaker. She keeps the listener hanging in wonder of what’s coming next! Her presentation is not only absorbing, it reveals the truth of God’s power to heal a wounded spirit.
Barbara Brown, Former Stonecroft Ministries Regional Representative, San Diego, CA
“The ‘P’ word [perfection] may be the heaviest burden women bear. All the misguided things we do to attain it can keep us away from what we need most – the unconditional love of God the Father. The Girl Perfect Study Guide gives you a map to the wholeness you were created for.”
Nancy Ortberg, author and former teaching pastor at Willow Creek Community Church
“The Girl Perfect Study Guide shatters the lies girls and women believe and points to the ultimate truth, which really does set us free. I am confident that this study will help thousands discover a beauty, purpose, and worth that truly lasts. Thank you Jen for exposing the ‘perfect life’ and inviting girls to experience God’s ‘perfect love.'”
Allie Marie Smith
Allie Marie Smith, Founder of Wonderfully Made
One of the best testaments to what Jennifer is doing for the young girls and women of today is a comment from my eleven-year-old granddaughter: “Grammy, I want to read this book and hear her again. She’s good and I learned a lot.” This is exactly what I experienced from a grown-up perspective when I was introduced to Jennifer Strickland’s amazing story. Read it and see if you don’t get the real story from an icon model and a powerful speaker of truth.”