Overarching themes such as identity, relationships, faith, and destiny provide readers a fresh approach to finding their way in this world. Author, speaker and mentor Suzie Eller offers young women an honest and faith-filled look at the journey to completeness. In The Woman I Am Becoming: Embracing the Chase for Identity, Faith, and Destiny, she acknowledges the pressures to look and act a certain way, and helps women explore key questions:
- What is a real woman?
- Where do I fit?
- What should I look like?
- Who should I be with?
- Where am I going?
- What about my faith?
Suzie shares her own story teamed up with life applications, as well as real-life advice from women further along in the journey who are still in the process of becoming. Concluding questions help readers assimilate what they've read into their own lives. As twenty-somethings absorb the book by owning their emotions and meet God in a new way, they'll begin to understand the woman they're becoming.
What Others Are Saying
"Wow, is this a much-needed book! Since I, like most women, ventured into my twentysomething and married years far from home and the influence of older women who had been around the block, I so appreciate Suzanne's heart to create a way for young women to gather and receive that sort of input and counsel."
~ Shaunti Feldhahn, Author of For Women Only and Coauthor For Young Women Only
"Real. Raw. Relatable. For women from all backgrounds trying to figure out this thing called life."
~ Kerri Pomarolli, nationally known comedian and author
The Woman I Am Becoming Interview
Describe the passion or burden behind writing The Woman I Am Becoming.
I've worked with teens in different ways for nearly two decades. I'm lucky, because that means I now have a lot of connections and friendships with twentysomethings and even those in their early thirties. I don't have all the answers, and that is not what this book is about, but I have had the privilege to come along side these amazing young women as they ask tough questions.
We're encouraged scripturally as older women (that's me!) to teach the younger women. For me, the definition of teaching is to talk about the issues that matter to them. First, I need to know exactly what that is, rather than assume that I know. Second, I need to be open to a dialogue, a conversation between women at different stages of life, and I love that part of this book. I also love that in real life. It's not a one-sided relationship, but I learn from them and perhaps I can share insight gained through experience, or through bumps (or crashes into brick walls) and thus we all are stronger.
I receive e-mails from all over the nation, and even from as far away as Nigeria or South Africa or West Africa and other parts of the world from young women who say, "I read your book today and it answered a question I have been praying over." That's priceless to me. Many have become Facebook friends and we continue to stay in touch.
You made sure to gather the input of several young women (twentysomethings) for the book. What was the common thread or theme in their stories?
Transition. They were making every critical decision in their lives: who to love, where to live, what to do, wondering what God expected or wanted from them at this stage. This was true, regardless of whether they were 21 and in college or 28 and a wife and mom to two. It was just different in intensity.
If you could give sort of a coming-of-age speech to women in their twenties who are just now finding their way in this world, what would be your three main points?
- You are a work in progress - be patient with the process. Learn from it.
- You fit - we are not all alike and aren't meant to be, and there is a niche for you. I can't take your place, you aren't meant to take mine, but together we can make a difference
- Your "calling" is to love and know God daily - we make it too complex. We are looking at the five-year or ten-year plan, and many times we miss the opportunities all around us--right where we are right now.
This age probably has the hardest time fitting in at church. The women's groups seem to be more for married women with children, and the college and career class is starting to feel too immature. What do you recommend for women who want to be involved at church, but don't feel like they fit in?
Margaret Feinberg, author of Twentysomething, says, "What makes a difference for twentysomethings who grow in their faith and one who grows stagnant or falls away? Without fail, relationships and community are most often cited as the determining factors for growth."
Community is a word that is strong among twentysomethings. They have left or are leaving the familiar world of family. Even if they are still close to family (distance or otherwise), the way their family perceives them may remain the same, but the reality is that they are changing. They are no longer the rebellious 16-year-old or the really smart cheerleader or the screw-up or the good daughter. Labels have fallen away as they are educated, make new friends, attempt to find a spiritual community, make relationship choices or face heartbreak, live financially on their own, work their way up the career ladder, have babies or wait to have babies, etc. They have moved from child to adult. Family is just as important to them, but they are looking for new sources of strength and encouragement.
The same difficulties arise in finding a church. Where do you find your niche? It's like a black hole in ministry among many churches. The twentysomething comes home and finds out that the youth group is mostly 13-year-olds and definitely not a good fit, or the singles group is comprised of mostly divorced men and women in their 40's with very different needs. Where do they fit?
So, I ask twentysomethings to redefine community as becoming a part of something larger. You contribute. You take. These people matter to you.
I encourage them to create community right where they are. For some, the biological family remains the primary community. Others find community in small groups or their community becomes four or five couples who meet in their home or at Starbucks, or four or five close friends who remain connected and close. The secret is that one community does not take away from the other. But it's still vital.
Author/Speaker Available for Interviews
1. During this blog tour, any reader who responds to Twila Belk at email@example.com with the name of a church or organization that is interested in having Suzie in as a guest speaker, will receive all three of Suzie's books (up to 10 sets will be given away on a first come first serve basis).
2. If any of your readers contact Twila regarding a Bible study group or book club wanting to use Suzie's materials, their groups will receive conference calls from Suzie to kick off or conclude their studies.
3. All readers who post a comment regarding Suzie's books will be placed in a grand prize drawing on August 2, 2008, for a delightful gift basket (see description below).
Gift Basket Giveaway
Real Issues, Real Teens: What Every Parent Needs to Know
The Mom I Want to Be: Rising Above Your Past to Give Your Kids a Great Future
Real Teens, Real Stories, Real Life Making It Real: Whose Faith Is It Anyway?
The Woman I Am Becoming: Embrace the Chase for Identity, Faith and Destiny
and. . .
A sleek coffee cup filled with Dove Caramel chocolates
A tootsie roll bouquet
A Dove Almond Chocolate bar