Throughout history, women have played vital, sometimes surprising, roles in God’s incredible plans. God has used women as well as men to accomplish His purposes-women who were flawed, imperfect, and very human.
In a time when women generally had a background role in life, the Bible lifts up their importance. In his Gospel, Matthew identifies five extraordinary women in Christ’s lineage-Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, Bathsheba, and Mary. Some of these women we would choose as role models. Others seem as unlikely-and unworthy-as most of us feel. Yet through God’s grace and power, each woman left an inspiring legacy of courage and strength.
Here are their stories, told in rich narrative form, with insights gained from their lives applied to ours today. Now, perhaps more than ever, we need their strength-a different kind of strength-to be women God can use to touch our world.
We look to other women-entertainers, civic leaders, professional and businesswomen-as role models to understand what it means to be a woman of strength in today’s society. But what about the Bible? Has God given us a blueprint for becoming a woman of real strength and virtue?
In A Different Kind of Strength, Beverly LaHaye and Janice Crouse highlight the lives of five very different women of the Bible to illustrate that every woman, regardless of her human failures or ordinary background and circumstances, has the potential to make a difference for Christ and His kingdom.
Creative and imaginative storytelling, solid biblical teaching, and insightful, practical advice give you help and inspiration to increase your strength as a woman, a friend, a daughter, a wife, a mother, a nurturer, a leader, a professional, and a helping member of your church and community.
“This is a book of encouragement and hope to women having doubts or despairs about their failures, life’s difficulties, hurts, and struggles. It is a refreshing change from the many books that focus on women’s ‘wants and needs,’ ‘woe is me mentality,’ or ‘blame it on the action of others.’
“The fictionalized accounts of these biblical women remind us that each day, each challenge, and each uncertain circumstance has value as she chooses to look to God for His purpose and not look through the eyes of her understanding and logic. This format helps women to refocus on God’s plan, wisdom, and ways.
“The uniqueness of the book is in the character development and discussions of the women after each of their stories are told. It is easy reading for individuals but also can be used in group discussions as they read and interact with scriptural references.
“I especially appreciated the many scriptural quotes and references directing the reader to the Word of God for guidance and wisdom.”
Campus Crusade for Christ
“Whether with fiction or Bible Study or a blending of the two, women are blessed by the inspirational pen of Janice Crouse and Beverly LaHaye. They encourage, instruct, and challenge in a winsome way.”
Dorothy Kelley Patterson
Professor of Women’s Studies,
Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary
“The stories of the five biblical women are vibrantly retold in this account which offers a deeply religious perspective on women’s quest for strength and power. Those women who today question the pervasive feminist ideology which disdains women’s devotion to home and family and advocates their quest for personal fulfillment through achievement in the marketplace can find support and inspiration in the ‘different kind of strength’ exhibited by the five biblical women portrayed here.”
F. Carolyn Graglia
Author, Domestic Tranquility
A Brief Against Feminism
“Finally, a book for thinking, competent women that shows the ‘real’ feminine mystique; real power and authentic impact. Not just another formula for ladder-climbing, heralding victimization, men-bashing or even searching within without God’s help. Beverly LaHaye and Janice Crouse introduce us to biblical women much like ourselves. We can easily identify with ones who are sometimes frail and sometimes strong. We are encouraged with the bold, yet timid, the ‘have-it-all-togethers’ yet sometimes ‘unglued.’ Real life. Real problems. And, a real God with real power. Hurrah! At last! An expose of bona fide, balanced female strength.”
“Beverly LaHaye and Janice Shaw Crouse are Christian women who speak eloquently in behalf of women’s issues and to women within today’s culture. Their new book, A Different Kind of Strength: Rediscovering the Power of Being a Woman, is a creative and dynamic medium through which they share the foundation of their own belief in a great and good God who is ‘for us’ in the midst of any circumstances life can send our way. Through the stories of five Biblical women, and the examination of what those stories say to us, they challenge us to be powerful women of God.”
L. Faye Short
President RENEW Network
“A Different Kind of Strength: Rediscovering the Power of Being a Woman, is fascinating and inspirational reading that goes beyond the scriptures to bring five women of the Bible to life. You will thoroughly enjoy reading about Rahab, Tamar, Bathsheba, Ruth and Mary as you gain new insights into their lives. Once you have read A Different Kind of Strength, you will be inspired to see how God can use each of us regardless of our own weaknesses. I highly recommend this book by two talented writers, Beverly LaHaye and Janice Shaw Crouse.”
Indiana State Senator
Executive Director The Confessing Movement
“A Different Kind of Strength is a different-and wonderful-kind of book. In a novel and powerful way, it retells the stories of five biblical heroines, and shows how God worked through the strengths and weaknesses of each one. From these unforgettable women, we learn the power-not of perfection-but of faith, hope, obedience, courage and wisdom.”
Senior Fellow for Cultural Studies
Center of the American Experiment
“A Different Kind of Strength reminds us of truth often lost in our daily routines: that life “in Christ” is a life transformed, filled with strength, peace, and joy very different from what the world can give. These stories of five strong biblical women will inspire readers and encourage them to reach out for the gift of this strength.”
Author “The Illumined Heart”
“I am happy to endorse this helpful and very interesting book which will benefit many women who are looking for inner strength received only through the power of God witnessed in the lives of the women portrayed in this book.”
“We all face uncertainty from time to time in our lives, but regardless of our situation, God can use us as His instrument to fulfill His kingdom when we allow Him to work through us for His honor and glory.”
“May God bless the ministry of this book and the impact it is going to make on God’s women.”
Commissioner Elsie L. Busby
National President, Women’s Organizations
The Salvation Army
“A Different Kind of Strength is a different kind of book. It is not another feel-good, self-help primer on being an ‘all you can be’ woman. I have long been intrigued by the seeming paradoxical inclusion of these five fatally flawed (aren’t we all!) women into the genealogy of Christ-the One who knew no sin. Mrs. Crouse and Mrs. LaHaye in a most insightful and imaginative way have made such sense of it all-revealing the amazing truth-they are as we. Therein lies hope and help for all!”
Melanie Wood Cavanaugh
Free Methodist World Headquarters
“LaHaye and Crouse combine masterful storytelling and Biblical insight to reveal where the real strength of a woman lies-in being created in the image of God. The authors weave together a marvelous tapestry of the lives of the five women mentioned in the genealogy of Christ to show us the height and depth and width of God’s redemptive power for all women. The foundation has been laid, the cornerstone set. Modern culture disdains the search for truth. A beacon shines, illuminating the darkness. In a time and culture without bearing or anchor, this book serves as a clarion call for women everywhere. As Christian women, we must answer that call.”
Dr. Vicki Sheafer
Chair, Dept. of Psychology, Assoc. Prof. Psychology
“A Different Kind of Strength is a current must read book for all modern day Marys who have prayed the prayer, ‘Here am I, a servant of the Lord, let it be done unto me according to Thy Word.’
“The authors are excellent teachers and storytellers of God’s word. The book holds appeal for Pentecostals, Evangelicals, and those of the historic liturgical churches. The linking of Old Testament to New Testament verses, the sound theological presentations, the honest depiction of life’s difficulties, and the uplifting challenge to trust God in all circumstances places this book on Tapestry’s Recommended Reading List 2001.”
Mrs. T. Gordon Shannonhouse (Bonnie)
Founder & President
Tapestry International, Inc.