by John Croyle
So forget about mattresses and peas. Here are the signs of a true princess – eight virtues that spell out the word PRINCESS:
- Praiseworthiness. A princess understands that she is worthy of praise simply because she is made in the image of God. The more she understands that she is innately praiseworthy, the more she lives in a praiseworthy manner. She becomes what she already is: praiseworthy.
- Righteousness. Though she lives in a fallen world, where everybody walks with a limp, a princess stands straight and walks tall. She lives according to God’s normal, not the world’s normal. A righteous person isn’t simply a person who has to be right all the time; she’s a person who is aligned with the right ways that God intended us to live.
- Initiative. Because she understands her praiseworthiness, and because her righteousness aligns her with God’s best, a princess takes initiative in doing good in the world. A princess makes good things happen.
- Nurture. God built into girls and women an instinct for nurture that boys and men simply don’t have in the same way. As you nurture your princess, you will equip her to nurture others. And by practicing nurture, she grows toward godly womanhood and will pass that along to her daughters.
- Character. A girl of character knows what her deepest desires are and chooses accordingly, ignoring all the short-term and temporary desires and pleasures that might throw her off the trail of her deepest joy. Raising your princess to be a woman of character means helping her get in touch with her truest desires so that she can resist her lesser ones.
- Empowerment. A princess possesses great power. Your princess needs to understand that life isn’t just something that happens to her. She has the power to choose, the power to make a big difference not only in her own life, but in the lives of others.
by John Croyle
Each of the following chapters will discuss one of these eight virtues, providing a self-evaluation so you can check how well you are instilling that virtue in your daughter, followed by stories and examples, practical helps and suggestions, and an examination of what the Bible—and especially Proverbs 31—has to say about that virtue.
John Croyle was an All-American defensive end at the University of Alabama during a renowned title run under Coach Paul “Bear” Bryant. Croyle declined a career in the NFL and instead went on to found and develop the Big Oak Ranch for Boys. Over the next few decades they worked to start the Girls’ Ranch as well as the Westbrook Christian School. He and his wife, Tee, together have raised hundreds of young men and women, including their daughter and Big Oak child care director, Reagan Croyle Phillips, as well as their son and former NFL quarterback Brodie Croyle. For more information, please visit www.bigoak.org.