Comparison is often a natural part of growing up, but that doesn’t mean it’s healthy. Getting value by feeling better than others is dangerous to our hearts, as well as to our relationships and mental health. In todays’ conversation Kristen Clark of Girl Defined walks us through her journey with the Lord from a place of comparison to one of contentment, and gives us powerful insights into how we can guide and love our daughters as they live out the Gospel in a digital world.
0:45: What is Girl Defined?
2:30: Kristine’s testimony
6:15: What motivates your ministry to women and young women?
7:50: What does comparison look like in the digital age?
11:25: What can we do to help our daughters with comparison?
15:00: How can parents begin conversations about self-image, beauty, and the digital world with our children?
21:15: What advice would you give to your 12-14 y/o self?
25:00: What are some positive social media accounts and follows for young women?
30:15: What other resources can our families utilize for these important conversations?
37:00: Review & Closing
Purposely. Your life. God’s purpose. Listen at onpurposely.com.
Nathan Sutherland: Welcome to the Gospel Tech Podcast, a resource for parents who feel overwhelmed and outpaced as they raise healthy youth and a tech world. As an educator, parent and tech user, I want to equip parents with the tools, resources, and confidence they need to raise kids who love God and use tech.
Hello everyone and welcome to the Gospel Tech podcast. My name is Nathan Sutherland and this podcast is dedicated to helping families love God and use tech. Today we are joined by Kristin Clark of Girl Defined. She’s a writer, an author, a speaker. Started this ministry with her sister back in 2014 and is joining us today to talk.
Some pretty specific topics about how we can gain encouragement and help our [00:01:00] daughters and our young people in our lives with comparison and specifically the focus of their ministry is to help women of all ages recognize who they are in Christ and to see God’s incredible design for women.
So Kristen, thank you for joining us today.
Kristen Clark: Hey, thanks so much for having me. I am excited for this conversation.
Nathan Sutherland: Oh my goodness. I’m excited to have you here. And I know that there are listeners who are excited because my wife Anna, is an amazing addition to this podcast, but it’s right now in this season, it’s few and far between for when we can get her here.
So they want a woman’s perspective and they want to hear this this content that you have got. So can you tell us a little bit more about Girl Defined.
Kristen Clark: Yeah, so like you said, we founded it in 2014 and really the passion my sister and I had then, which is still our passion today, is just to help women and young women everywhere understand what it means to be a girl defined by God and not a girl defined by the world, the culture, her feelings, her emotions, you know, her peers, everything else.
Because as I’ve experienced in my own life and my own personal growing up as a Christian, but then [00:02:00] really having to make that choice when I was, you know, young adult, Am I going to follow Jesus for myself or is this just my, my parents’ faith that I’m piggybacking on and coming to that place of, yes, I want to follow Jesus.
But then, you know, not realizing that I was often following the world in so many things regarding my, what it meant to be successful where I found my approval, my worth, my value. And I just realized, you know, following Jesus is one thing, but really digging into his word and learning what he has to say about all of these crucial areas of our lives.
And that’s the only way we’re gonna know what, truth is really. And as we do that, we will define our lives according to his truth and not the world or our emotions or our peers. And as I learned some of those lessons the hard way, I discovered that God’s design is truly so freeing, so beautiful, offers us the most worth and value, more than anything we could find anywhere on this earth or within ourselves.
And as I learned that and grew in that I just found so much fulfillment and purpose in Christ in my life and so many of the struggles and insecurities that I had been battling for years, through Christ, I was able to really [00:03:00] overcome those as I look to him for my truth and to be my guide. And so that’s my passion is to help women and young women everywhere do the same.
Nathan Sutherland: Yeah, that’s a well, that’s amazing. Where do you, I guess, oh man, so many questions coming up. Walk me through in your life then, what did that look like? So you said you were walking in faith and you kind of had to own, I think we all have this as part of our testimonies, a spot where we, we have been believing, and then it comes to this really clear, like, decision point of like, Oh, like I need to make this my own and I’ve gotta do some legwork.
What pushed you to that point? Or what was one of the life conflicts or, or situations that brought you to that point in your life?
Kristen Clark: Yeah, it comes right to mind. And for me it was actually becoming a model. And so when I was 18 or 19, I, so for years I had, I’m, I’m really tall, six one . So for years when I was younger, that was hard.
I was insecure. I didn’t like being taller than especially all the boys and all the girls. And so constantly struggling with comparison and why did God make me this way? And I’m way too tall . But then as I, you know, grew a [00:04:00] little older, I was getting all these offers from random modeling agencies. They would just, you know, random, like I’d be in the mall with my mom and they’d walk up and say, Hey, we’re we’re an agency and we want you to model for us.
And they would give me their card. And this kept happening until I was finally like, Oh, I guess maybe being tall has some benefit. You know, some people think it’s cool. And so I never really entered the modeling scene at all though. My parents, especially when I was younger, they were like you know, they just saw the pitfalls and they were encouraging me in a different direction.
And so when I hit, you know, when I became a young adult, I was like, you know, I kind of wanna explore this for myself. And, you know, without even realizing it, I, I realized that I was searching for some sort of worth or identity or value or purpose that I thought I could find by becoming a model. I thought if I had this title, You know, Wow.
I’m not gonna have any more insecurities. I’m not gonna struggle with comparing myself to any other women because I’m gonna be a model like right. That’s as high as you can go. You know.
Nathan Sutherland: I get paid for being pretty.
Kristen Clark: Yes. Like, this is gonna be awesome. And so I found an agency that they said they were [00:05:00] family friendly, cuz I still, you know, had some values I wanted to hold onto as a Christian.
And they said, yes, yes, no problem. We’re not gonna pressure you, blah, blah, blah. And so I signed a one year contract, and during that year, it was the most eye opening experience for me. Mainly because all of those lies I had believed like this was going to be the answer. This was gonna fill all of those struggles in my heart.
It actually worsened them. I became more insecure, more hyper focused on myself, more critical of my outward, appearance. I was comparing myself to women, especially the women I worked with more and more to the point that I was just spiraling down. And by the end of that one year, oh, and the agency did not hold up to their promise.
They were pressuring a lot by the end and basically saying, Hey, if you don’t start taking more jobs, if you don’t stop being so picky and become more flexible, you’re never gonna make it anywhere and you’re not doing our agency any favors. And so you just need to basically not be so picky. And for me, that was a red flag of, okay.
You know, they claimed one thing, but that’s not really true once you get into it. And then just what I was experiencing in my own heart, my own struggles, I just knew, [00:06:00] I was like, I can’t do this. This isn’t good for me. This isn’t healthy. This isn’t helping me at all move toward Christ. In fact, it’s doing the opposite.
And so I had a hard choice to make, like, which path was I gonna pursue? And God gave me the grace to really see the wisdom of just dropping that like after one year, I said, I’m done, and I, I didn’t sign another contract. And I just decided at that point in my life that I was gonna pursue the Lord. I wanted to know, what does God say about womanhood specifically? What does he define as true beauty?
What does he say is valuable? You know, what characteristics does God uphold as beautiful and good? And I just dug into the scriptures. And for me, that really began a journey for myself of pursuing the Lord wholeheartedly. And like I shared a little while ago, that is when I really found so much freedom as I started to look to the Lord for my identity, my worth and purpose, rather than trying to find that in.
Nathan Sutherland: Would you, I mean, what is kind of one key takeaway that you came away from this modeling experience to diving into the word and the Lord just really, I guess, buried deep [00:07:00] into your heart as something you come back to. I mean, since you were 18, 19, and now continues to fuel that fire for women and for young women as you do this ministry.
Kristen Clark: Yeah, you know the verse, and it’s a very popular one, the one in Psalm 1 39 that talks all about being fearfully and wonderfully made. Most people are pretty familiar with that. And for me, that verse really became it just became alive to me and not so much in the sense of reading it like I am fearfully, wonderfully made.
You know, my soul knows it very well. Not so much in like a self focused way, but more of an outward focused of God. You have created me, you have created me, you have knit me together. I am fearfully. I am fearfully and wonderfully made because of you. And so allow me to use this body, this life as an offering poured back out for you, my creator.
And you know, that was a huge lesson that God taught me. Sticks with me to this day because, you know, even to this day I’m not struggling with maybe all of those same struggles, but still tendencies for selfishness and self focusness. And you know, even today [00:08:00] struggles of comparison or still wanting to fall into some of those beauty traps.
I’m reminded that my purpose, that God created me, I’m fearfully and wonderfully made because he is an awesome creator and, my purpose with this body and life he’s given me is to serve him to love others and pour my life back out for his glory. And as I’m focused on that, there really is, there’s no room or really time for a lot of those struggles cuz my heart posture, my focus is in the right place.
Nathan Sutherland: Yeah. Well, and, And unfortunately, right, we could believe that exact same thing. I mean, right now you’re running a successful ministry and you could very much tell yourself like, Well, I’m a mentor for young girls and I’m a successful business person, and I’m right. I’m doing all, I’ve written multiple books, like I’ve done these great career things, like now I matter.
And then you’re like, No, because there’s always someone else out there that I can go compare myself to, right?
Kristen Clark: Yes, Yes.
Nathan Sutherland: Some other internet account where I’m like, But they have more followers, or they have more conventions or they have like, like there’s always that next thing, right? Yes. And it doesn’t [00:09:00] just go away.
Which brings us to, I mean, this digital age of comparison is nutty. Like, we shouldn’t know about the number of people who are doing better than us at life like we do, right? Like I, I know, you know, thousands and thousands of people on the internet that are making more money and driving better cars and like, “Better lives”, or at least doing a better job filtering it.
So what does comparison look like now in the digital age for our young ladies?
Kristen Clark: Mm. Oh my goodness. So it’s, it’s not just the young ladies, like you said, It’s all of us, but young ladies in particular, I think find just an enormous weight that they are bearing without even realizing it because it is so normal to just be on social media to follow, you know, all these different accounts, all different people from different backgrounds and to just every single day without even realize they’re realizing they’re doing it just to be comparing.
Looking at the highlight reels, you know, we’ve heard that phrase like everyone’s putting their highlight reels out and we’re all watching each other’s [00:10:00] highlights, and going, Wow. Comparing our, our low valleys, like our low lights to their highlights. And that’s really what so many of us are doing. And so I think that it’s, it’s hard when something like social media becomes an invention and I think there’s a lot of good, you know, we use it in our ministry every day and it’s one of the primary ways that we connect with our community, with our sisterhood is through social media.
So it’s hard for me cuz like, I don’t wanna bash it, but at the same time, there is, there is good and evil that can be found in it. And I just think it was something that was thrown at this next generation with basically zero training, zero tools, zero equipping. You know, parents didn’t have this. And so parents are like, I don’t even know how to navigate this.
I barely even know what’s out there. And their daughters are just, spiralling down in these traps of comparison of all sorts of jealousy, envy just struggling with so many things in their hearts because of what they’re being exposed to, what they’re seeing on social media. And I think parents are kind of at a loss to know what to even do.
And so I wish that there was more tools, like, I love what you are doing cuz you are equipping. And I think that’s something [00:11:00] that parents before, you know, if they have younger kids who are coming up before they even get on social media, equip them, teach them, help them learn how to navigate these tools. Get on them yourself so you know what is even happening out there.
And then I know we might talk about this a little later, but just being really intentional about who you follow on social media. It is so common for girls, and I see this all the time. You know when I struggle with this, when I first got on, you just kind of follow everyone and any anyone. Like, oh, they’re a famous, you know, superstar, a movie star, supermodel, whoever, and you just follow cuz it’s what everyone else is doing.
Not realizing that every account you follow is either like, is it edifying you as a Christian, as a believer, as a person, or is it kind of pulling you toward the world? And I think we have to be so careful and be willing to say, You know what? That’s not helpful for me. That’s not helping me, That is not edifying me.
That’s. good for me at this current season of my life. And so being willing to unfollow and then be intentional with who you follow so that your experience on social media is one that can be more edifying versus one that’s tearing you down all the time.
Nathan Sutherland: Yeah. Right. And that, I guess [00:12:00] that’s so encouraging. How, how then do we do that? Because as a parent, so I have a three year old daughter who this is as someone who works in this field, research researches, that taught in a middle school for a decade, right? Like this is, I don’t look forward to the teenage years and age. So how do we help young women and women? But I mean, we can say don’t compare, but we know we’re already doing that.
That happened before the internet. And now we live in this age where, I mean just months ago, Meta was in front of the US Senate answering questions on what are they doing with Instagram and Facebook about the mental health crisis they’re causing from the way algorithms work, and from the content that’s getting posted, and specifically the research we know about mental health for young women.
What can we do then to help our daughters with comparison? Obviously you mentioned bringing gospel truths and biblical truths like Psalm 139 and, let’s reorient our focus so that we’re not staring at our belly buttons, but instead we’re staring at , his goodness. So what, what can we do in that?[00:13:00]
Kristen Clark: Yeah. So there’s some questions that I would really- like whether your daughter’s already on social media or she’s begging for it, right. Cause I think most young women- parents are like, I think a lot of parents don’t necessarily even love that their children are on there. But it’s what all the cool kids are doing, right?
Or pretty much every kid. And so they feel that pressure on their child’s behalf of like, okay, they’re, they wanna be on this. But one, I have seen a lot of parents just say, You know what? We’re not gonna go there. We’re just not gonna go there. Here are the reasons why. And they just share and say, We’re just not gonna do social media, at least for a while.
And I know some parents might be hearing that and thinking, Okay, that’s terrifying. My child’s gonna hate me, but some parents just take that step and the child, you know, yes, they’re disappointed, you know, they might resent you for a while, but I think at the end of things, they’re gonna look back and go, You know what?
That was actually probably healthy for me at that stage of my life. So one, don’t be scared as a parent to say, we’re gonna push pause on this. Even if they’re on it and you feel like it is not good for them. You can, you can pull the plug or at least take a sabbatical, take a break, take some time. But here are some questions that I think could be really good.[00:14:00]
Just some discipleship. And that is, that’s such a key word here, because I think parents need to be stepping in and discipling their children regarding social media. So just asking some simple questions to your child, like, why do you want to be on social media? You know, why? What, what is your motivation or what is your, your heart motivation?
What’s your heart posture in what you post, whether pictures or videos? What are you after here? So not just like the yes and no’s of social media, but really trying to have conversations. If your child’s on it, you know, do you ever talk about it and not just in an accusatory, like, don’t do this and don’t do that, or, why are you doing that?
But really trying to get to the heart. You know, what is your heart motivation for why you’re posting or even pushing them like, Hey, how can. Use your account in a God honoring way? How can you use it in a way to encourage others? You know, there’s so many things out there that are discouraging and hard.
You know, how could you use your account to be a light for others? And then just training them in discernment, like I said. Not just allowing it to be some sort of free for all, but really helping them discern and think through what they’re doing [00:15:00] on there, who they’re following. Is this helpful? Is this edifying?
Because we are called to follow the Lord in all areas of our lives, right? To pursue true. Pursue goodness. To take our thoughts captive to pursue a heart of purity that comes from the inside out. And if we aren’t discipling our children and asking these hard questions and taking these to the realm of social media, you know, this includes social media, then I think we’re missing a huge piece of our child’s life for those who are on an area that they desperately need guidance in.
Nathan Sutherland: Yeah, really taking those super practical, right, biblical standards for our hearts and our lives and our thoughts and all of those, and then say those also apply digitally, daughter of mine. Like this is, this is really key. I, I love that idea of disciple, of discipleship being digital. That’s so practical.
First I bring up a lot is the Proverbs 22:6, right? That we need to raise up our children in the way they should go. And that being on there, like, why, do you wanna be on there? What’s your motivation for these posts? How can you use this account in a god [00:16:00] honoring way? Like those are awesome questions to help with comparison. Are there major, I guess flags? Like if I’m a parent and I, maybe I gave my kid a smartphone or whatever. They, they have a smartphone and they have social media, maybe even just through a public account, which is one of the things we encourage them to do is, Hey, let use it on your phone or on a public device.
Chris McKenna. Is from a group called Protect Young Eyes, and he has the, the phrase, a delay is the way, and that it’s not, no tech, it’s slow tech. Right. And that, that’s this, I love his phrasing on that. And I just like, it runs in my head all day. So what are some things parents can look for when they’re, I guess how do you broach this conversation of like, like, I don’t know, do you go and be like, So do you think anyone’s prettier than you?
Like, what, what does it look like to begin trying to get in? Cuz this is sensitive area anyway. And one of the main things that happens, I have found in my teaching and ministry time is when shame comes in, they clam up and they shut down. And so if they’re already experiencing shame about their body or about their [00:17:00] experiences about what’s going on online ,comparison what, how can we break into that?
What’s, what are some steps to like help? Maybe, maybe you already answered that. I guess in just what you just said there is like asking the why’s behind it, but are there any other tips or tricks we can have as parents to kind of, reach that gap?
Kristen Clark: Yeah. You know, I would say don’t wonder if it’s happening, like comparison. Assume it’s happening.
Nathan Sutherland: Okay.
Kristen Clark: It is almost impossible for it to not be happening. You know, I think about when I first got social media, and this was Facebook back in the dark ages
I know these ages.
When there was nothing else right. Like I remember, and even then, like there was only so much you can do. It did not have all the bells and whistles like we have today.
It was very simple in, you know, in comparison. And I just remember getting on and I, my sister and I actually write about this story and our first book Girl Defined how we had Facebook and you know, we would see all of these women on there, you know, these girls and these celebrities that we would follow and we’d see the magazines at the grocery store, these things that were [00:18:00] influencing us about what true beauty was.
You know, and it’s this version of womanhood that’s seductive and sexy. And we’re like, Oh, we want that because that’s what’s cool. Like, that’s what, that’s what turns heads. That’s what you know, gets the attention. And so in our hearts, you know, we didn’t even realize that’s what we were after, you know, trying to get the approval of others and trying to get the likes and comments even then in the dark ages.
And, we literally bought, you know, a camera and it wasn’t a digital camera, it was like, I don’t even know what it was. And we got up on the roof of our house, recruited our younger sister. We were great role models, and she was probably like eight or nine at the time and we’re just like, Okay, sis.
You know, just start snapping the pictures. We loaded our faces with makeup and we’re like, probably like mid teens at this point. We like decked out with the jewelry and like tried to put on some you fashionable outfits and she just did this our sister just started snapping and we had the wind blown look with the wind literally on the roof?
Nathan Sutherland: The photoshoot on the roof.
Kristen Clark: Yes, on the roof of our house. I’m sure the neighbors were like what? They already thought we were crazy, like, what is wrong with that family? And so, you know, then we got the pictures and we, so I guess it was a digital camera, but definitely not a phone. And we [00:19:00] uploaded them onto our computer and we literally put all these filters, you know, the filters we had available and we just put like uploaded an entire album.
And just as soon as we uploaded it, we just kind of sat back and waited for the comments and likes to come in. You know, we were just, we were after it. Yeah, we were after, you know, and we were struggling with comparison. We saw what we. It was beautiful, attractive, what was getting the applause. Getting the likes and comments on social.
And we wanted to do the same. And so you know, for parents, if you’re seeing your daughter really wholeheartedly chased after certain trends or certain things, and you’re like, Wow, where’d that come from? Trust me, it’s probably coming from social media, it’s probably something that she saw on there and she’s chasing after it hardcore.
And you know, the thing that was really helpful for us the most wasn’t our parents just coming in and saying, you know, girls, what are you doing? This is crazy. You know, stop doing that. Yeah. But rather, our mom really intentionally started discipling us in what it meant to be a woman of God, you know, at a young, at a teen age.
I mean, she had already been doing this for years, but of course we struggled like any teens. And so I think so often we wanna make the focus just about social you know, [00:20:00] about the comparison happening on social, But like you said earlier, it really is a life thing. It’s not just the digital age. It’s a, it’s a struggle, it’s a heart struggle.
And whether it’s happening on social and really being just like a pressure cooker on there because it’s so intense, it’s really something that’s also gonna be happening if she is, you know, at the grocery. Need those magazines of the celebrities or at school or where, wherever her, you know, she’s going in her life, there’s gonna be comparison.
And so I think taking, just like, okay, we’re gonna, we’re gonna focus on some discipleship. It’s not just gonna be on comparison, but truly on what it means to be a woman of God, to be a young woman of God. What it means to find our identity in him, to find our worth and value in him to live, to please him.
And you know, rather than man, rather than our peers. How do we live a life that is pleasing to God? And how do we have that heart focus And so, I remember as my mom was just discipling us in this, and really it can be simple resources like Girl Defined is our first book. I mentioned it a minute ago. It is all about this.
It’s literally the subtitle is God’s Radical Design for Beauty, Femininity, and [00:21:00] Identity. And it’s all about this comparison, social media, real life, beauty, identity. How do we help young women understand God’s beautiful and compelling design? So even a mom just saying, Hey, let’s read this book together.
Let’s do a chapter a week. You know, it has a study guide at the end of each chapter. You don’t have to make the focus all about social, cuz I know for some moms they feel like that’s such a clashing point and their relationship with their daughter and they’re like, Oh, I just wanna build a bridge, but I don’t know how.
I think you can take these, this discipleship away from this central theme of social media and just make it about just regular discipleship, just life on life. Let’s learn about God’s design. And that is going to impact how she sees views interact with social media because it’s impacting her heart, right?
And so I would just encourage parents to start there and get a resource, whether it’s our book or there are so many fabulous books out there where you can start just having those heart to heart, conversations.
Nathan Sutherland: I love that. Yeah, that’s awesome. Because it isn’t, Yeah, this is a hard issue. It’s not just a social media issue, and it turns out social media puts it right in front of ’em and directs ’em towards content that can [00:22:00] be- right like there’s, there are still algorithms and modern technology and digital age and you can make mistakes faster kind of thing. But yeah, it is, it does at the end of the day come down to discipleships and yes, Girl Defined. Maybe I’ll ask you more about your other resources here in a little bit, but yes, that’d be an awesome spot to start. Thank you for pointing us towards that. I think to kind of transition from this thought to what you’d mentioned earlier about some positives of social media, which I would love to get into. Cuz, I will- speaking from my own perspective, I have a very hard time thinking positively about social media, , and when I, when I use it for my own work I do it.
Hmm. I, I do it because I believe the Lord’s asking me to, let’s put it that way. But, so I want to get there. What would you say to that, you know, 12 to 14 year old self on the roof, looking back with the experience you have and what the Lord’s done in your life and the people you’ve been able to minister to what advice would you give to that young lady?[00:23:00]
Kristen Clark: Mm. Yeah, I would give myself the advice of, of looking to the Lord. I, Okay. I would say . I’m trying to think of how would I, what would I tell myself? What did I need in that moment? Cuz I know my heart and I know what I was chasing after, and it really was the approval of others. And I would tell myself that it doesn’t matter how many people, like, how many people approve, Those applause will always fade.
They will always end, and they will never be enough. The only place where you’re gonna find true worth and value, that never fades, that never ends true purpose, true hope, is in your relationship with the Lord in finding your identity in your creator and living your life, not from a place of always needs, like, I need these people, I need this approval, I need this attention, but from a place of fullness, which can only be found in Christ like because he created me, because he gives me my identity, because I have worth and value from him. Because I’m fearfully and wonderfully made because of that I am whole in Christ and therefore I am filled and I can use my life [00:24:00] to pour back out to love others.
To serve others, to encourage others. And it really, for me, I just so, so wish that I had that heart posture, that understanding, that really embracing and digging into my own relationship with the Lord, because the other, the other route, it really just leads to constant emptiness. It’s an endless cycle.
I remember that after my sister and I posted that album of those rooftop pictures, you know, the, you know, the applauds and the likes and the comments. Yes. They were there and it was almost like this little, high this little buzz. But then guess what happened? The next day then, you know, two days later they were gone.
It’s like, okay, forgotten into the abyss. We’re moving on. Right? And so there was that feeling of like, Oh, well what are we gonna do next? Like, now we’re empty again. But when you truly follow Christ and you, you live your life from a place of being filled in him, satisfied in him walking in his truth then, and you’re pouring out.
There’s just such a joy and a fullness and you don’t have to be on that cycle of endless chasing. And I just wish I had learned that sooner. I, you know, and to this day, there’s still sin struggles and I have to fight against it. Like you said, [00:25:00] even in ministry, it’s like, oh, that comparison. But I know the truth and I’ve learned it, and I know the truth that I come back to and I see in my own life now that when I am walking in my relationship with Christ, I’m satisfied in him. I am full and I’m not, I I’m not bothered, like, yeah, am I the prettiest person on the planet? No way. But even if I was, I know it wouldn’t be enough because it can only be found in Christ. And so I just want young women to understand that so much. And to save, I wanna save them from some of the heartache that I had to walk through.
Nathan Sutherland: Yeah, well, which is amazing. And there are some positive resources on the internet to actually do that, right? That there are people who are like yourself, constantly reminding young women and women of the truths of Christ and the promises in the gospel, and of who their, who their identity is in and what that means.
So let’s, let’s transition to that idea of like, what are some social media accounts or some social media outlets that are positive, that are even beneficial?
Kristen Clark: Yeah, so I will say that we as a ministry have chosen not to be on TikTok, and this has been a [00:26:00] big discussion that we regularly have with our team because I just really struggle with TikTok.
I struggle with the type of content the demographic just, it just feels to me like it can often be a black hole where once you get in it, you’re just like into the abyss. And so, we’ve decided not to one, because we, we don’t want to encourage other young women to get on if they’re not like, Oh, well I gotta get on to follow girls.
Fine. And two, we just, yeah, we’re not huge fans of the way things go over there. I just feel like it’s more pitfalls than good. And so personally, we’ve just avoided, So we’re, we’re primarily on Instagram. That’s where we do a lot of our connecting and interacting. And so yeah, our account is a great one. If any young woman, you know, whether she’s a teen, twenties, even up to 30, we have content that is just so encouraging, relevant, pushing women toward finding their identity in Christ.
Young women and older women like, like myself now in my thirties. And then some other accounts and you know, I don’t, I know for sure these are all on Instagram and they might have other platforms as well, but Her True Worth [00:27:00] is another one. And it is a beautiful account, mostly filled with just beautiful quotes and scripture and prayers.
And so it’s just an account where any, anytime they post anything, you’re gonna find some sort of encouraging word, something that’s pointing you back to the Lord, back to the gospel, back to true hope. Just kind of back to that bullseye. And so that’s a beautiful account. Her True Worth. We love them. We know the people who run it.
Another one, an account we’re also friends with is Wholehearted Quiet Time. And this is an account that is geared toward women, and it’s all about helping you grow in, your personal quiet time. They have resources for it. They have all sorts of adorable, beautiful, quiet time journals, companions that help you even as you’re digging through God’s word, how to learn and grow from the word with this journal.
And then they just have all sorts of beautiful videos and quotes, and I’ve been so encouraged by them as well. So Wholehearted Quiet Time. And then another account, so I’m just flying through. There’s a few I have two more.
Nathan Sutherland: Do it. Yeah, that’s great. And we’ll, we’ll link these all in the in the notes so that people can find ’em if they
Kristen Clark: Oh, perfect.
Nathan Sutherland: Wanna learn more about ’em that’s [00:28:00] great.
Kristen Clark: Yeah, another account. And so a lot of these, we didn’t know them. We connected with these women through social media and now we’re friends. So right there, you know, something positive that we’re seeing happen through social media. But another account that we love to follow and have become friends since is a woman named Tara Sun. And she is just an incredible godly woman. She’s young, you know, I think she’s like twenties, just, you know, newly married and actually just had her first baby. But her account is just a beautiful, encouraging place where she also posts a lot of things about just defining every part of our lives according to the gospel, according to God’s word.
And so she has beautiful quotes, and she’s an artist, and so it’s just really aesthetically pleasing. But she also jumps on regularly and just shares you know, you see her a lot and she’s just sharing short videos, encouragements from the word. But she tackles all sorts of topics as well from like social media to beauty, identity and now kind of getting a little bit more into like some marriage stuff.
But Tara Sun is a great account, really encouraging Christian woman. And then the last one I’ll share is an account called She Lives Purposely and you just write it, type it in, all this one word. She Lives Purposely. And [00:29:00] again, it’s just another account of a godly woman who’s a little bit younger as well.
And she just shares, it’s just all about living purposely, you know, how do we live on purpose for Christ? And so any woman who’s like, Yes, I need more. Her account also is just really inspirational, really encouraging. So I just rattled off five different ones and you know, starting with Girl Defined and then a whole bunch of others and, you know, I could keep going, but I think those are some great places to start.
If there is, you know, a mom listening, like, Ooh, write these down. Get your daughter, you know, if she’s on social, encourage her to follow these take inventory. You know, I always tell girls like, take inventory. As time goes on, sometimes you find yourself following more and more of the accounts that aren’t encouraging you and less and less of the ones that are, because sadly worldly things can be very entertaining.
And so often we find ourselves naturally at our flesh drifting toward that. But I think it’s good to take inventory and just push pause and say, Okay, I’m gonna take inventory. Who am I following? What kind of content am I consuming? How much of it am I consuming every day? Like, how long am I actually on Instagram or on whatever [00:30:00] platform?
And really, Just take inventory and then really be prayerful and you know, go before the Lord. Like, do I need to reevaluate? Do I need to change some things? Do I need to push pause? We encourage the young women who follow us regularly, Hey, you know, if you feel like things are out of control, if you feel like social media is not helping you right now, then push, pause, take a week, take 30 days and just take a break.
We have done it. I actually do it regularly on my personal account because I just find that, I just find it to be a time waster for me in a lot of ways. So I do it for ministry, but on my personal, I will find myself just pushing pause for 30 days, sometimes even 60 days. And it is so refreshing to just have a break.
And sometimes we need that break to even gain perspective. It’s hard to see what’s true, what’s not, what’s good, what’s bad when we’re in it. But if we step back. Sometimes those things can be become really clear.
Nathan Sutherland: Yeah. And that’s, that’s absolutely huge. Yeah. One of the , one of the major ways we can’t gain that perspective is just getting some distance from it.
I often tell families when they talk about, Well, how much time should we be on social media? I’m like, [00:31:00] Well, If you can’t do it in 30 minutes, you’re doing it wrong. So like, that’s our, like, it’s just at the end of the day, we’re saying, Well, we need this to stay connected, or I need to, you know, be able to up, like, you can create a post, send the post reply to comments.
Like, you can do that in 30 minutes if you don’t get sucked into a vortex of, you know, doom scrolling or
Kristen Clark: Yes!
Nathan Sutherland: constantly, like following the hashtag, you know, rabbit holes off into the, the hinterlands of thought. So yeah, that is a great reminder of. Both heart check, how are we doing on our time use and how are we doing on comparison and our joy?
That’s, that’s amazing. So I want our families to hear a little more about, I guess your resources, cuz you’ve got a website. So if people go to girldefined.com, they’ll find it. And you have tons of resources. What resources would you like our families, our parents, our young ladies to know about?
Kristen Clark: Yes. Well, like you mentioned, our website, we have hundreds and hundreds of blog posts that we’ve written over the years targeting very specific topics. And so [00:32:00] if a mom or dad is listening and they’re like, I, I really, you know, my daughter’s struggling with you know, comparison, for example, we’ve been talking a lot about that.
Nathan Sutherland: Yeah.
Kristen Clark: Or a certain, you know, anxiety or worry, or she’s like struggling to know how to really have a quiet time and, you know, I’ve shared stuff, but she needs more or. You know, all, I mean, you name it, we’ve written on it. And so you can just go on our website. We recently redesigned the entire thing from the back end to the front end to create a website that is more of a resource.
So you can just search any topic and whether it’s a podcast, a video, or a blog post, it will come up in the search. You can categorize it by any of those different categories to really figure out, you know, the, right content for you and. Also hundreds of YouTube videos on there. And now we’re not quite to a hundred podcast episodes, but we’re close.
And so that-
Nathan Sutherland: Hey congrat-
Kristen Clark: has become another huge resource. Thank you. And so, yeah, our website, we want it to be a hub for young women and parents alike to go on to search and just find content that’s gonna be really helpful for very specific topics. And then more generically, we have our resources, our books, and so we’ve just [00:33:00] been so blessed over the years to be able to write.
I think we just published our fifth one with our publisher, so
Nathan Sutherland: Wow, congrats!
Kristen Clark: Our first book. Thank you. Yes, it’s been, I mean, writing books is so hard. It almost kills us every time, but it’s always worth it. in the end. Yeah. We’re like, Yes, cuz then we have a resource that we can just give to women and we’re like, Okay, just read this.
It has everything that we wanna say to you, but we only have five minutes, so this will do the trick. But our, but just like a quick overview. So our first book, Girl Defined, like I mentioned, all about God’s design for beauty, identity, femininity, womanhood. So that’s like our foundation. And then the next book we wrote is called Love Defined.
So the second most popular topic that we get questions about is all about love, romance, dating, singleness, pitfalls, red flags, all of that. So that love defined is all about that. And. Third book, which I think was our most challenging, is called Oh my Goodness, I’m blanking-
Nathan Sutherland: Is that the Sex Purity? Yes.
Kristen Clark: Yes. Sex Purity, oh my goodness. Sex Purity and the Longings of a Girl’s Heart. Yes. Discovering the beauty and Freedom of God Defined Sexuality. Thank you. I’ve never had that happen before. . [00:34:00] So that book is, it’s, I feel like even relevant more today than when we wrote it a few years ago. Just with everything happening in our society and in the world regarding gender and sexuality identity.
So that focus for single and married women. Just to help us understand what does God say about sexuality, about gender, about identity. Everything from lustful struggles that we may experience, whether single or married, young women, older women. How do we battle? How do we fight? How do we pursue truth?
How do we understand God’s bigger plan for sexual intimacy, his greater design? You know, we’re sexual beings, but how do we live in a way that honors God in every different season? So it’s a very practical, it’s very raw and honest as my sister and I share our own struggles. And kind of journey with that.
And so there’s that, and then there’s Shine Bright, our 60 day devotional, which is just 60 days to becoming a girl defined by God. That’s also a great place to start. A mom and daughter could do that together, that devotional over the summer. It is a great devotional, very easy to read each day, and just like little nuggets of truth that are great conversation starters.
[00:35:00] And then our most recent resource is called not part of the plan. And that one is just all about my sisters and my journey the past 10 years, kind of separately of really having to learn to trust God with a lot of disappointments, things in our lives that did not go at all the way we expected. Some real tragedies, just each personally and how we both-
the journey that God took us on of really learning to trust him and surrender and find hope in the story that he has for us versus the one that we’ve always imagined for ourselves. So there’s a quick nutshell. Those are some of our, our favorite resources only cuz they take a deep dive into each of those topics and really bring a biblical gospel centered just teaching and view on how to walk how to navigate each one of those topics.
So yeah, I think that’s what we have. .
Nathan Sutherland: Oh, those are amazing. And well, and then you have one more. You’ve got a course.
Kristen Clark: Oh, yes, Yes. We have a mentorship course. Ugh, I, This actually-
Nathan Sutherland: What is that?
Kristen Clark: This is probably my favorite. .
Nathan Sutherland: Ok. New favorite. This is the one.
Kristen Clark: New favorite! Okay. Our mentorship course. Yes. Speaking of the digital age, this is another thing that I love about [00:36:00] technology is, we created an eight week online mentorship course and so we’re huge fans of mentorship. We talk about it all the time, that Titus 2 model older women teaching younger women. My sister and I each have mentors of our own that we meet with regularly.
And so over the years we, because we talk about mentorship and encourage every woman, get a mentor, find a mentor, find a godly woman who can pour into you. We’ve had so many women say like, Well, can you mentor me? We’re like, Oh, I wish. Like, I wish we could mentor every single person that asks, but it’s just not possible.
We only have so much time and so we decided, you know, let’s create an eight week course walking through, you know, all of the most foundational topics of our faith from who is God? Who am I? Identity. Our quiet time prayer, Battling sin struggles in our own heart using the word, how do we fight sin using the word?
Just practical things like that. The things that we would mentor a young woman in if we were mentoring her in person. And so each week has like four to five different videos that you watch. It has downloadable homework, a guide that walks you through everything. You can go at it or walk through it at your own [00:37:00] pace, but it is probably the most in depth like mentorship, deep dive that we have available. And it’s all videos, like I said, and a little digital workbook and you can download the PDF and print it if you want. And it’s just an amazing resource for any young woman. You know, I would say from like young teen, a little bit older, even twenties, we tried to make it relevant for all age groups, like so we could connect with a wide variety of people.
But it is, yeah, it’s an eight week course and we’ve just heard incredible feedback. I think we’ve had over 500 women go through it and just say it was a turning point for them in their relationship with the Lord. So if anyone’s interested, that also is available at girldefined.com.
Nathan Sutherland: That’s amazing. Now that sounds like such a cool resource. And again, like one of those things that allows, like, that is one of the beauties of the digital world is this information can be captured and held and delivered to, you know, the waiting masses. It’s one of the ways I’ve gotten through so many Tim Keller sermons, right? Like Tim Keller is a pastor, but I can still be fed like by his wisdom and his, you know, process.
Kristen Clark: Absolutely.
Nathan Sutherland: So that is super cool that, [00:38:00] that’s out there too. Man, thank you so much for being with us and for kind of talking us through all of these huge questions, Kristen, about how do we help our daughters with doubt and comparison. What can social media be? I, I love that you, you spoke some hope into that, cuz I will tell you, our audience doesn’t get a lot of hope for social media from me but it is true that they’re like, I do it again. I feel called to use social media because people are out here and there are people that are, are hurting and need hope, and they look in this spot. And so I, I do feel called to that and I love that you and your sister are being faithful in this space as well to encourage people and to not just, I don’t know. Not just to say go, because God’s here, therefore do whatever you want. But to be intentional and to be thoughtful, much like you’re encouraging them in all areas of life. Well thank you so much for being with us today. If people need to find you, girldefined.com the resources in the links.
And is there anywhere they can send their questions, comments, or concerns?
Kristen Clark: [00:39:00] Yes. We love mostly questions. We don’t really take concerns. I’m just kidding.
Nathan Sutherland: Right. Fair enough.
Kristen Clark: Yeah. email@example.com is how they can reach us directly. We monitor our emails daily and so we love hearing from parents, young women.
We love interacting with you and just getting to connect a little more personally.
Nathan Sutherland: That’s awesome. Well, thank you again for being here today.
Kristen Clark: Thanks so much for having me. It was a great conversation. Keep up the great work. You’re doing an awesome job.
Nathan Sutherland: Oh goodness. Well, thank you. That’s awesome.