Woman Enough

When you speak as much as I do, you end up saying some stupid things, particularly if you’re tongue-prone to shoot off from your notes like a bike into a briar patch. Nothing can run amok like a mouth. Sometimes you catch errant words as fast as you say them and you snatch them back before they land. No harm, no foul.

Other times, if you’re like me, on more than a rare occasion you start the second day of a conference apologizing for something you said on the first day. I am happy to report that in 3 decades of speaking and teaching, I’ve found groups to be refreshingly forgiving and gracious and lighthearted when you own up to something misspoken, particularly if it happened to have been funny. You get a fair amount of leash with funny, I’ve found, as long as you don’t cross a line. Of course, sometimes you don’t know you’ve crossed a line until you do it. Thankfully, most people give you the benefit of the doubt and, frankly, feel sorry for you for frying your own self up like a chicken.

In the words of Solomon, when there are many words, sin is unavoidable. (Proverbs 10:19 HCSB) Translation: talk less, sin less.

A few years ago I said something to a group that haunts me. I’m writing this article because I want to take it back. I’d like to blame the group because they were vocal and hilarious and egged me on. But I won’t. It was my own big mouth. As usual, it wasn’t in my notes. I’d do better with my messages if I wouldn’t look up from the podium but that’s no fun. I love faces; round ones, square ones, white ones, brown ones. I love faces. Anyway, spontaneity can be a lovely thing and sometimes the Spirit of God speaks most clearly through a word that comes to the speaker completely unscripted. This wasn’t one of those times.

I was talking about how territorial women can be. The group was all riled up in the subject matter with me, amening and nodding so I just kept prodding. “Not all territorialism is inappropriate, mind you,” I said, the bike now wobbling to the left. “For instance, if a woman lays a flirtatious hand on my husband, I’m liable to take her arm off at the neck.”

That’s a near-enough truth or I might die trying.

And that’s when my mind suddenly leapt from the sacred page of Scripture to the 1966 lyrics of that legendary queen of country music, Loretta Lynn. So, I just went with it and said…

Cause you ain’t woman enough to take my man.

Since some of your parents were still in diapers when this feisty ballad blew up the AM radio dial, I’ll bless you with the rest of the song. Come on, now. Pat your foot. A country song doesn’t get better than this.


You’ve come to tell me something you say I ought to know
That he don’t love me anymore and I’ll have to let him go
You say you’re gonna take him oh but I don’t think you can
Cause you ain’t woman enough to take my man
Women like you they’re a dime a dozen you can buy ’em anywhere
For you to get to him I’d have to move over and I’m gonna stand right here
It’ll be over my dead body so get out while you can
Cause you ain’t woman enough to take my man

Sometimes a man start lookin’ at things that he don’t need
He took a second look at you but he’s in love with me
Well I don’t know where they leave you oh but I know where I’ll stand
And you ain’t woman enough to take my man
Women like you they’re a dime…
No you ain’t woman enough to take my man


The first time I sang that chorus word-for-word, I wasn’t even woman enough to shave my legs. But, here I am full-grown and I can still spit those words out with sparks coming off my tongue.

Which is precisely what got me into this mess.

And that’s when I pedaled that bike in a blur of feet straight through the bushes:

And if she IS woman enough to take your man, you better woman-up! 

The crowd went wild. We hooted and hollered and howled. We came dang near to throwing our shoes. We nearly drowned in our own estrogen.

Say to somebody beside you, “You better woman-up!”

And they did. Nice and loud.

We were women copping an attitude. Shaking our index fingers and wagging our heads. Women back-talking other women who’d had the gall to swish their petticoats into our territory. Girlfriend better step back because she doesn’t know who she’s messing with. It was hilarious.

And stupid.

Listen. You’re woman enough even if some other girl did take your man.

You’re woman enough even if you’ve been ditched by a man for nobody but himself.

You’re woman enough even if you’ve been thrown out and rejected.




You’re woman enough even if you’ve never had a man.

You’re woman enough even if you’ve never put on a stitch of make-up or darkened the door of a nail salon.

You’re woman enough even if you couldn’t care less about what purse you pick up.

If you’ve lost both breasts to cancer and don’t have a hair on your head, you’re still 100% woman enough.

None of those things make you a woman. Your Creator makes you a woman.

It’s not just men who can make us feel like we don’t measure up. It’s other women. We’ve got enough voices in this world telling us that we’re not enough. God forbid that we who are called to serve women echo the charge. Let’s watch our mouths out there. I’m talking to myself first.

Hopscotch through the Scriptures and you’ll watch God get a hold of one woman after another who didn’t seem to be woman-enough in her world.

As it turned out…

Hagar was woman enough. (Genesis 16)


Sarai was woman enough. (Genesis 17:15-19)


Rahab was woman enough. (Joshua 2)


Ruth was woman enough. (Ruth 1-4)


Naomi was woman enough. (Ruth 1-4)


Hannah was woman enough. (1 Samuel 1)


Elizabeth was woman enough. (Luke 1:5-25)


Anna was woman enough. (Luke 2:36-38)


The Samaritan woman was woman enough. (John 4)

For crying out loud, Jesus even saw to it that the sinful woman in Luke 7 was woman enough.  We’d assume Mary was woman enough from the start because she was handpicked by God but I’m asking you whether or not you think you’re woman enough. God handpicked you, too.

This is what makes a woman enough. And a man enough.


So God created man in His own image,

in the image of God He created him;

male and female He created them. (Genesis 1:27 ESV)

We are worthy of mutual honor and esteem because God granted such graces to humankind when He fashioned us in the palm of His hands.


When I look up at the heavens, which Your fingers made,

and see the moon and the stars, which You set in place,

Of what importance is the human race, that You should notice them?

Of what importance is mankind, that You should pay attention to them,

and make them a little less than the heavenly beings?

You grant mankind honor and majesty.  (Psalm 8:3-5 The NET Bible)


Several months ago a very dear brother in Christ asked me if I might know a young woman he could set up on a date with a Christian young man he loved and esteemed. Nothing wrong with that but I have lived long enough to break out in hives at the prospect of matchmaking.

Me: Well, what kind of taste does he have? What’s he looking for?

Him: A Christian.

Me: Yep, I get that. Of course.

My friend told me a few other things like high hopes for good looks then slipped this one in as an endnote: And he’d like her to be a virgin.

Dead silence.

Don’t get me wrong. I teach abstinence outside of marriage. I beg girls to wait. I wouldn’t have a woman deal with all the issues of my past for anything. Barreling off the plan of God can bruise a person up. I have a tremendously high regard for both men and women who hang onto their virginity until marriage. Still, something hit me sideways even though I wouldn’t argue for a second about the young man’s right to choose. Each person must know what he or she is capable of handling in the past relationships of a prospective mate.

Is he a virgin? I inquired. Women my age can ask that kind of thing in a context like this and get away with it. I tapped my fingers and waited for an answer.

Him: Well, I think so but, if not, he’s a reconstituted one.

And I went off like a bottle rocket.

What he meant was this: if the young man wasn’t a virgin, he’d repented since then and been forgiven and restored by God.

Amen to that.

Me: But the girl couldn’t be reconstituted??

Him: “Yes. Of course. That’s not what I meant.”

And, to be fair, it wasn’t. He’s a great guy. But the persisting double standard that still lurks out there like smog in the smug nearly threw me into a coughing fit. Needless to say, it’s not just male-imposed. We women do it to ourselves. Somewhere way down deep in our souls, we honestly believe that a sinful woman is worse than a sinful man. We so wanted to live up to the woman we planned.

Jesus lived up to the plan. That’s what we need to know.

The righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God and are justified by His grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus. Romans 3:22-24

For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male or female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. Galatians 3:27-28

My grandmother might have said it like this: what’s grace for the goose is grace for the gander.

Jesus has done more than reconstitute us regardless of our gender anyway. He’s forgiven us, completely purified us, and made us new creations. Men and women alike stood at the foot of the Cross that dark afternoon. Men and women alike stand at the foot of it today.

Incidentally, I still believe in womaning-up when we need to, as long as it’s the kind we find in the folds of Mark 1:29-33.

And immediately [Jesus] left the synagogue and entered the house of Simon and Andrew, with James and John. Now Simon’s mother-in-law lay ill with a fever, and immediately they told Him about her. And He came and took her by the hand and lifted her up, and the fever left her, and she began to serve them. That evening at sundown they brought to Him all who were sick or oppressed by demons. And the whole city was gathered together at the door.

No matter what has you down, your back to the ground, reach out your hand and put it in the palm of Jesus.

Woman, up.




PS. Because you’ve gotta love her and you might need to grin.


138 Responses to “Woman Enough”

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  1. 1
    Fuzzytop says:


    This post is one of the many reasons you are so loved and appreciated. Yes, it’s funny but there are some mighty powerful truths in here too.

    My MIL sings Loretta Lynn songs so I have kinda grown up with them too. *grin*

    Much love and hugs,

  2. 2

    This woman is up and giving you a standing ovation for this, Miss Beth. Thank *you*.

    And Loretta Lynn forever! Amen. 🙂

  3. 3
    Melanie Brady says:

    Dear Beth: Thank you! Well said. I remember feeling very inadequate when I heard you say that. Thank you for the retraction. All glory to God the Father, through His Son, my Savior, Jesus, with the help of His Holy Spirit.

  4. 4
    vanessa says:

    Unfortunately, I fall into the category of women who have a “past” and in my recent experience of now only dating Christian men after having dated primarily non-Christians. I have found them to be extremely judgmental (more so than non-Christian men) and wanting to know many details of my past that quite frankly are none of their business. I know I am forgiven (and worthy) and I know there is a good man out there for me but the “double standard” is disheartening at times. Thank you for this post Beth.

    • 4.1
      Andrea says:

      Sweet Vanessa,
      Praying for Gods truth of who you are in HIS sight to be forever upon you. I too come from a very jaded past, and have struggled to take hold of the freedom in Gods forgiveness and love for me. I am also praying for the man God has for you, that he will see just hoe precious, beautiful and worthy you are!

      In Him dear sister,

  5. 5
    Tara G. says:

    I just love your heart. That’s all.

  6. 6
    Gina Husted says:

    Beth, you never cease to amaze me with your words of wisdom. Somehow you are able to reach inside my soul and show me exactly what I needed to see or hear at that moment in my life. This message was no different. Thank you for reminding us all that we can be woman enough no matter our past as long as we have our faith and are strong in it. Bless you for your willingness to share your wisdom and give us all the hope we so desperately need in such a bad messed up world we live in today. Looking forward to your next message.

  7. 7
    Marie Burcham says:

    I love you Beth. Thank you for these wonderful words especially the one about breast cancer. My sister is a double mastectomy breast cancer survivor who is defiantly woman enough to beat cancer almost one year out and counting….with your sweet words you have encouraged me to encourage her and tell her she is so worthy of Gods loving grace and no less of a woman now to continue to receive it…

  8. 8
    Casey says:

    I worked my way through the Esther study a few years ago and learned SO MUCH about being a woman in that study. Because our culture doesn’t teach it. Not the right, Biblical way anyway.
    It’s awesome that you make teachings right that you may have viewed as wrong…we could all learn from that….more specifically ME.

    We do have to keep watch over women and our man. Praying I’m woman enough to do it with Grace

  9. 9
    DG says:

    This was quite perfect.

  10. 10
    Kimberly says:

    And wow! I think that this is a lie that the enemy uses entirely way too often. A lie that hits you in the gut and leaves you doubled over. Reading through this entry, I felt the pang in my stomach…. because many of those lines are lines that the enemy throws at me as I am sure he does for 99.9% of women all over the world and through all of time. And just as the pang is there there is an equal pang of frustration that even when I know he’s throwing the lie at me… I still ponder it… embrace it… accept it. And by His grace… He is showing me how to see the lie, refute it, and resist it… all with varying success (and failure) but nonetheless with increasing hope and trust in Him. That He is present…and active. And so with a heart that feels more frozen/numb in this season than broken and wounded, I reach up my hand and grab onto HIS hand. Reaching up…

  11. 11
    Taria says:

    Thank you for this….. These were words spoken to my hurting heart this morning. Because He made me, I am indeed “enough”. God bless you richly as you speak and share words with us!

  12. 12
    Bethany says:

    My favorite post. Oh how I needed this today! I love you Beth

  13. 13
    Kim says:

    This could not have come at a better time! Just 24 hours ago, I shoved my whole foot in my mouth and didn’t notice that both feet were actually missing until an hour or so later.

    I literally ran back to find the woman I needed to apologize to and correct what I meant by my overly tacky comment. While she said she understood, it was clear that I had crossed a line that I didn’t even see coming.

    Kept thinking about LESS WORDS – less sin. In fact, I have tried to keep that thought at the very forefront of my mind all day so as to avoid choking to death on my own feet.

    And yes, somewhere in the many thoughts of my mind, I honestly thought “I wonder if Beth Moore ever does this kind of thing”. Yes, yes I did.

    And then I wondered how you handled it and recovered from it. 🙂

    I asked the lady’s forgiveness. I asked God’s forgiveness. And I pray that I truly learned from it so as not to repeat it.

    Thank you for your honesty and for the encouragement that you just gave in so many, many ways.

    Blessed Easter to you

  14. 14
    Teri says:

    Because of that mentality is why I love Isaiah 1:18 “Though your sins are like scarlet they shall be white as snow, though they are red as crimson they shall be as white as wool”

    Fighting false ideals with scripture is the best way to woman up 🙂

  15. 15

    This was beautiful and so timely. Thank you for sharing. It unexpectedly brought tears to my eyes. I needed to read these words today. <3

  16. 16
    Shelly Elston says:

    Dearest Beth,

    Thank you for this post. You always seem to have just the right words…even when you feel you don’t. 😉 I loved what you wrote and can relate to it on so many levels.

    First of all, I can’t even count the number of times my tongue has gotten ahead of me and out has flown words that are inappropriate, careless, hurtful, or unkind. I am getting much better at controlling it the older I get but in no way has it been completely tamed. I cringe at the memories I can recollect of some things that I’ve said and shudder at the thought of knowing there are many things I’ve said that I can’t remember at all yet have probably stung someone to the core in a way that they’ll never forget.

    I have also learned that, as I age, I am much more aware of what it is that can be hurtful to another person. I guess it’s plain, old life experience and wisdom.Things that used to never cross my mind as being insensitive to say or subjects that I thought I had expert knowledge about, I am now more aware than ever that often ‘I don’t know what I don’t know’. And some of the things that I was so casual about talking about before are areas that sting me now or sting people I love.

    Due to my infertility and my inability to conceive and reproduce, I have often felt pangs of not being woman enough. Thankfully, I have a wonderful husband who has never made me feel that way and, when those feelings do crop up, I don’t sit in those feelings for long. But they are real and I have them. So I thank you for reminding all of us that God says we’re enough. In all of our brokenness and human faults, we are enough.

    May you and your beautiful family have a very blessed Easter.

    So much love and grace to you,


  17. 17
    Becca says:

    Sometimes unknown triggers arise out of the blue that you don’t expect to knock the wind out you, but they do.

    This post was the equally unexpected breath of fresh air to revive me.

    (I’m still recovering from a gut-punch that happened to me yesterday, this time via innocent TV commercial, on an unmentioned issue that regularly leaves me feeling “less than” as a woman).

    From one woman with alleged open-mouth-insert-foot syndrome to another, thanks for the CPR. Keep speaking truth. 🙂

  18. 18
    Carol says:

    Love you Beth, That was a great post.

  19. 19
    Madalyn says:

    Thank you!

  20. 20
    Amanda says:

    This!!! So good. So, so good. Thank you.

  21. 21
    Mindi Gaut says:

    You are just the most real person! I’m so thankful for the work God does through you. Your teaching on LifeToday are speaking to me so much (Naman)! Great word!! Boy do I get it.

    I doubt anyone who knows your heart knows you’d never offend. Your posts always speak to me on many levels. Gosh, being a woman is tough, but you are such an encouragement. I love how you love ‘your man’ and how you cherish him. And, I love how you love the women you minister to!

    I adore my husband too and he has lovingly, authentically and genuinely loved me for the past 24 years. I’ve never taken it for granted a moment! He loved me as a young bride and ten years ago when I had no hair due to chemotherapy and only one ‘God-given’ breast. He loved me every day in between and never made me feel less than a woman. What a gift!

    Have a blessed Easter!

  22. 22
    Renee Groff says:

    … and this is why we love you! 🙂

  23. 23
    Lynne says:

    Wow! Thank you for this. What a master you are with communicating in such a way it grips right at my heart with God’s word! True words!

    …I do love LL, too. God bless you.

  24. 24
    Sandra Mauldin says:

    SPOT. ON. Every young woman should read this post. Thank you for speaking the Truth!

  25. 25
    Sarah Marion says:

    AMEN. Thank you for your honesty, integrity and another great post.

  26. 26
    Ganise says:

    So gorgeous. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

  27. 27
    Lori says:

    I LOVE your grandmother’s quote!! Thank you for sharing.

  28. 28
    Amy says:

    Love this and needed to hear it from an older sister. Love you and so thankful for you!

  29. 29
    Bonnie Workinger says:

    Beth, We met recently at the Atlanta airport. You even took a “selfie” with me which I promptly posted on facebook and bragged to all my friends that you were my new best friend! I can so relate to this post. I have gotten caught in the moment while speaking, veered from my notes and said things I immediately wanted to take back (but everyone was laughing and saying Amen)!! Thank you for being so transparent and always speaking truth and life giving words!!! I will treasure my picture with you always!!! Till we meet again. Bonnie

  30. 30
    Dr. V says:

    That was just down-right awesome and on point! The video at the end is hilarious! I would love to have just a smidgen of your unction to teach. Love you much, Beth!

  31. 31
    Dianne Donaldson says:

    Wonderful Words Of Life!!! Thank you.

  32. 32
    Mickey says:


  33. 33
    christina says:

    What an uplifting post. Thank you for this encouraging word. Jesus is enough, and we are in Him! Hallelujah.

  34. 34
    Allison Ashton says:

    Good reminder Beth!. Reminder to me: I am important just as I am without the pats on the back, without the friends to enourage me and so on. I go back to Psalm 139.

  35. 35
    amybhill says:

    i stinkin love you.

  36. 36
    Donna says:

    Bless you Beth, for trying to put things right and for your wisdom and humor in doing so. I so feel for you about saying something you can’t take back. Been there and done that! I thank God for the Lord’s mercy. You are doing a wonderful thing. We love you and God loves you. Thank you so much for your love for Jesus and you and your team’s hard work at the Minneapolis conference–my daughter, 2 relatives and I attended and it was so marvelous. I never wanted it to end–I guess that’s what heaven is going to be like!

  37. 37
    Diana A. says:

    Happy Easter! Blessed Resurrection Day!

    Thanking Jesus Christ for His life & death & resurection!!

    Joyfully Praising the LORD for His Grace poured out on us all!!!

    Woman enough to Sing of my Redemption!

    Wise enough to keep mouth shut! 😉

  38. 38
    Linda says:

    Amen Sister! Praise God that He thinks we are woman enough. I love that He went out of His way to minister to women. Thanks for the encouragement.

    I am with you also about the double standard for men & women. I remember, during the time I was engaged to my husband, his grandmother talking about a girl we knew who had become pregnant(out of wedlock). She was talking about how bad that girl was. I just looked at her and said “It takes two to tango.”

  39. 39
    Shirlea H. Caswell says:

    Perfect post!

  40. 40
    Tara says:

    Thank you for saying what you did to that young man.

  41. 41
    Marjie Scheib says:

    Great post! I especially love the “what’s grace for the goose is grace for the gander” I can hear my own grandmother saying the same thing. Happy Easter.

  42. 42
    Sherry says:

    Thanks…much needed for me personally…

  43. 43
    2bluemom says:

    I love you.
    And I can relate (as we all can!) to saying words I wish I could take back. I love that you were willing to come back and straighten this out even a few years after the fact. I have several friends, dear to me, who are dealing with the aftermath of divorce right now and I’d like to amen this post.

  44. 44
    Tami says:

    Beth, I just spent the last half hour throwing myself one heck of a pity party in the shower cause of rejection by yet another guy. I finally clean up my face, sit down, turn on my computer and boom! Here is your blog just waiting for me. I will soon be 35 (and still single) and I am constantly filing my head with thoughts of I am not good enough, deserving, blah, blah, blah. Thank you for writing this today. I needed to hear it!

  45. 45
    Janice Pitchford says:

    Amen and amen!

  46. 46
    Cheryl says:

    What a wonderful Easter message
    Jesus died on the cross because we are ” enough”
    Love your ability to self reflect and correct .. Lessons for all of us the embrace and cherish
    And love your sense of humor ..
    But know we are grateful for your ministry .. And God has so much more in store for you and us

  47. 47
    Deanne says:

    Well said!!

  48. 48

    Amen and amen! Such a timely blog post for so many, including me! Also, I can completely identify with you Beth. I’m usually the woman in the group whose mouth is engaged before the mind approves what it is saying. Anyway, I appreciate so much what you’ve said here. I know many hurting women right now who have been lead to believe they are not enough because of x, y, or z reason. What a blessing to be so strongly reminded that they and we ARE enough because God said so and Jesus redeemed us. Love you so much!

  49. 49
    Betty M says:

    Dear Miss Beth,
    hey! Thanks for the memory jog!! Ya those danged tongues slips we all do “em”. Sometimes we all say “I really said that??”
    You’re woman enuf Mis Beth and thanks for letting me know I am woman enuf too!! Have a great Easter!!
    Love Ya to the Moon and back!!
    Betty M

  50. 50
    Jean says:

    Beth you are awesome! Happy Easter!

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