Stasi Eldredge has been in ministry since her junior year in college at San Diego State University more than thirty years ago, but she is best known for co-authoring, with her husband John, the bestselling books Captivating and Love and War. Her new book, Becoming Myself: Embracing God's Dream of You (David C. Cook, Aug.) is a conversational and confessional guide for women looking to heal old wounds.
Where does your passion for women's ministry come from?
I definitely have a heart for women and I think I always have, in part because I am a woman and also from coming to learn what women are facing not just in our country, but around the world. As a believer, I want women to know how loved they are. When we get that, when we increasingly get that, we're more free to offer who we are to the world, to our neighbors, to our communities.
You tell women it’s important to write things down and to pray in order to become themselves. Why?
The power expressed in our written words and in our spoken words, the power to bless and to curse, is real. We bless our own lives, our work, and our families by saying that they're good, versus the more negative things that can come out. As we awaken to God and invite him into every place in our lives, that’s a step toward our dreams, where God speaks to us. It's the planting of the seed and the fruition of owning it. I write in the book that people who actually do that, they're the ones whose dreams are coming true.
Why is naming things is important?
We don't live in a world that is friendly to us; we're barraged by negative talk and words. You can tell a person 100 good things and one bad thing, and it's the bad thing that will have all of the weight. Naming things correctly is coming into alignment with the word of the God. It's coming out of agreement with everything that hates us and coming into agreement with what God, the King of Love, says about us, even if we don't believe it. Stepping into alignment in truth is a spiritual discipline. Sometimes before we believe what we say, we name it and the effects come later.
You write really personal insights about weight gain. What have you learned about women's relationship with food?
Addictions are so messy. When we take our aching heart and our pain and hand it over to anything but the heart of God, it gets really messy. In the story of Adam and Eve, she reaches for a forbidden fruit and eats it. I wonder if there isn't some connection there, of falling out of believing that God will care for our deepest needs, and instead eating something.