Finding Myself Among 50 “Women to Watch” in Christianity Today

photo credit to Chris Cappozziello

This month’s cover story for Christianity Today profiles 50 evangelical women who “are profoundly shaping the evangelical church and North American society.” And somehow, I made the list, along with 49 other women who pretty much all seem far more noteworthy than I do (say, Ann Voskamp, Rachel Held Evans, Sara Groves, Joni Earekson Tada…). So I was surprised, and humbled, and grateful.

The news came in the midst of this challenging season, in which I haven’t written nearly as frequently or as much as I would like to do, in which I have been second guessing my decision to cut down my working hours in order to provide some stability for our kids, in which I have questioned my role as a wife, mother, and writer more than ever before. CT asked Gabe Lyons, founder of Q, to write a profile of me. You can read the whole piece here (click the link and then scroll down to the bottom of the page), and here are a few excerpts:

At 34, Amy Julia Becker has stirred one of the great philosophical conversations of our time: “What does it really mean to be perfect?”

In 2011, she authored A Good and Perfect Gift (Bethany House), highlighting her struggles with perfectionism as she chronicled the months before and the years after learning that her firstborn daughter, Penny, has Down syndrome.

. . . Becker is widely admired for balancing her various callings and responsibilities as mother, wife, and writer. “Being fully human implies understanding ourselves as creatures,” she wrote. “A major aspect of recognizing my humanity meant recognizing that I am vulnerable, needy, dependent, and limited. Just like my daughter.”

I read those words out loud to Peter a few weeks back, and he said, “And now she’s living the philosophy. She can talk the talk but can she walk the walk?” Most days I’m not sure that I’m balancing my various callings all that well, but I have been encouraged by the thought that even in the midst of a season of slowing down professionally in order to serve my family, I might be learning more about what it means to follow God’s call on my life and perhaps even encourage others as they do the same.

So, thanks to CT– in the midst of this season of not-so-much writing and lots of mother and wife responsibilities–for reminding me that God is present in it all, and that my limitations are a part of who I am as God’s child.

 

About Amy Julia Becker

Amy Julia Becker writes and speaks about family, faith, disability, and culture. A graduate of Princeton University and Princeton Theological Seminary, she is the author of Penelope Ayers: A Memoir, A Good and Perfect Gift (Bethany House), and Why I Am Both Spiritual and Religious (Patheos Press).

Comments

  1. Nancy Huggett says:

    Congratulations Amy!!! I presume you have read Jean Vanier? I love his book Being Human, so kindred to your thoughts.

  2. “God is present in it all, and that my limitations are a part of who I am as God’s child”
    Beautiful conclusion, AJ. And yes, you certainly should be listed among those who are influencing the church in America today. (I’d have preferred they left a few of the others off the list, but I’ll resist the urge to name names.) I am so glad that CT ran that article, and that you were included.
    In fact, that issue had three of my blogging buds in it: you made the list of 50, Karen Swallow Prior wrote the inaugural her.meneutics article, and Rachel Stone interviewed that food guy. It felt like old home week to me as I read through the magazine!
    Tim

  3. Rajinie Dixit says:

    I just discovered your blog and your writings after reading the Christianity Today article. I was inspired by your words and when I read about all you do “balancing” I wondered why I couldn’t do it all too. I’m a full-time mother of 3. I’m a part-time Speech-Language Pathologist. I also have the rolls of pastor’s wife, runner, volunteer, wanna be artist, chef, and I have so many other plans and aspirations for my life. Now as I read your blog, I realize none of us can do it all, all the time. Thanks for sharing your struggles balancing all of the callings in your life. God gives us seasons for everything. It is my goal to enjoy this season of mothering, while dabbling in my other hobbies and interests.
    http://angrypastorswives.blogspot.com

  4. Amy Julia. I’ve known you 5 minutes and already find you inspiring and worthy of emulation. As I ponder the great question of perfection (and the issues of balance as a mother, friend and professional), I find both peace and encouragement in the assumption that perfection is but an allusive opportunity to constantly strive to be better while remaining fully present and appreciative of the imperfection along the way. Life and lessons and love exist in the imperfection – ie along the path. I still find the destination worthy of pursuit, but I’m enjoying the journey more every day. Here’s to the next leg of your journey! The kids and I look forward to whatever small role we might play.

  5. I include you in my top 25 influences for me. And for your influence in my girls through your time at FOCUS. Writing transparently about the trying moments as well as the highlight moments remind me of God’s presence in each. He has carried me “thus far”, transforming me best at my lowest point. I pray for you, your family and your work. Sometimes the experiences we ponder change us most. Keep writing as able.

  6. Ronda Wagner says:

    It was a lovely article written about a lovely person. Blessings AJ!

  7. Congratulations, Amy! A well-deserved recognition. You stand alongside many amazing women of God! I look forward to continuing to follow your journey via your blog and hopefully upcoming book Thank you for sharing your story with us!!


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