A Polaroid Family Snapshot
By Drenda Keesee
The Sixties brought us bell-bottom jeans, a new genre of music linked to the British Invasion and Motown, and the advent of color TV, but behind the scenes, a prolific amount of problems was stirring. In 1966, a TIME cover story actually asked, “Is God Dead?” The Sixties were a turning point for the standards of family and marriage, and one from which our culture still hasn’t recovered. Prayer was taken out of the school system. Racial tension resulted in outbreaks of violence. Media drifted from family-focused entertainment, and new ideals on the family were birthed. I was raised in the early ’60s in a small town in Georgia, where a fifth-grade teacher introduced me to…
…the propaganda of the feminist movement.
I grabbed ahold of that teaching and turned into a marriage-hating, man-hating, family-hating broken young woman. Men hurt me at a young age, and I channeled that hurt toward the cause. I used feminism as an excuse for revenge on the people who had hurt me. The mantra of the Sixties was to do what felt good and ignore the consequences. It may have started with intentions of love and harmony, but on its misplaced foundation, it grew from a movement to a rebellion. While people were losing themselves in the hype, the consequences mounted, and today they are boiling over into the lives of our children.
More than fifty years after prayer was removed from public schools, we are reaping major repercussions from those decisions. The family system has been flipped on its hinges, and we are facing a cultural war on marriage, resulting in unbelievable statistics of teen suicide, divorce, and domestic violence. Fewer couples are marrying and instead are just cohabiting. Many no longer feel there’s anything wrong with living together before marriage, but the facts don’t lie: “Cohabiting couples are more likely to split up. When they do, they often form new partnerships and have additional children, creating a complex web of half-siblings, stepparents, child support payments, and family visits.” Innocent children are the biggest losers of the family breakdown, but the parents lose, too. People, in general, aren’t investing in the family anymore. The culture is pushing an anti-family agenda, attacking and rebranding what God created. Because a house divided cannot stand (Mark 3:25), Satan wants to get a hand in your family so he can stop you from accomplishing your destiny.
We are on the verge of another turning point in the culture. The birthing labors of the new family have started, and the media have an epidural on hand. The culture is in a pivotal season of decision between throwing the family model out altogether, or fighting to get back to ground zero . . . the vintage family, refashioned and repurposed, by reclaiming its origin.
My children grew up in a radically different era than mine, with instant access to information and entertainment via the Internet, with moral ethics being publicly challenged by our government and education system. Will marriage still be valued ten years from now? Will families still be honored? I believe in the principles of the vintage family because I want to protect the future of all children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. I want there to be peace and joy in family life again. I want to invade the culture that is trying to twist and dilute families, and I want to bring in the strongest, clearest form of the family system—the one that works.
(An excerpt from Drenda’s book The New Vintage Family)
Listen in Now to Faith Life Church!
Drenda Keesee’s contagious zeal and humorous personal experiences help make her ministry of spiritual, emotional and relational wholeness one that will bless your life and spark a new fire in your spirit.
A wife of over 30 years and a mother of five children, Drenda has ministered at churches, seminars, and conferences, and through the mediums of television and radio, for more than 20 years.
Her books, The New Vintage Family, Better Than You Think, and She Gets It are available wherever books are sold. In these heartfelt books, Drenda shares her personal journey and the life lessons that have brought her to where she is today, as well as practical answers that all people need to live a joyful life.
Drenda and her husband Gary founded Faith Life Now, a ministry designed to spread the message of freedom in the areas of finances, faith, marriage, and family. Tune in for their weekly messages here. Faith Life Now hosts conferences worldwide, and sponsors both Fixing the Money Thing, which Drenda co-hosts with her husband Gary, and Drenda.
Through their own life experiences, the Keesees have found the principles from God’s Word to be powerful and effective. At one point, Drenda was a young, suicidal feminist with no hope of ever being “good enough” for her own standards of perfection. She never wanted the “inconvenience” of a husband or children, and she was on her own path to success. But the stress of trying to achieve perfection and perform for love left her broken and used. She had success, but it was nothing compared to the pain and loneliness it had also brought.
That’s when God got a hold of her heart. It was there—at her lowest point—that she found the One who accepted and loved her, faults and all. Since that transformation, Drenda has had a passion to reach women who find themselves where she once was.
She married Gary after attending college, and there she found herself in a personal boot camp of sorts. She says, “I cried and told God, ‘I can do anything but be a wife and mother.’” She committed to learning how to do it God’s way. Through the many years of raising their children and struggling to make ends meet, Drenda learned from their mistakes. “I didn’t know how to be a wife and mother, but God saved our marriage, taught us how to parent our children for success, showed us how to have financial success, and then irony of all ironies, He called us to ministry.” It’s truly because of these life experiences that Drenda can now share so many insightful principles for people who are now going through the same struggles.