Bethany of Girl Defined is Problematic (and Greedy)

Which isn’t sound very God-honoring.

I’ve been wanting to do a critique on Girl Defined in the style of Brittany Dawn for a while but alas, just don’t have the time while trying to 100% complete Forbidden West.

That said, Bethany Beal of Girl Defined is not very Christ-like. She’s currently complaining about free gifts people have sent her.

“Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.” — 1 Thessalonians 5:18. While I’m certain Paul was probably talking about Christians being imprisoned, burned at the stake, and chopped in half for preaching the gospel here, this verse could easily apply to someone attempting to give you a backpack listed on your own registry. For free.

Furthermore, she’s fighting with people online who (rightfully) point out that saying she’d rather roast herself like a hot dog than work 9-5 is stupid.

Lying is one of the 7 deadly sins. I doubt if given the option between being grilled for cannibal meat and working a normal job, she would choose to roast. Secondly, doubling down rather than either turning the other cheek, or apologizing for making it seem like working is a bad thing (because there’s no reason to degrade someone else’s profession just to uplift your own), is deliberately stirring strife. Something Christians ought not to do. The Bible say, “[t]hey were filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness. They are gossips, slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless.” Does she really look at behavior and thinks it’s honoring God? Especially when this behavior is right up there with murder?

Despite Girl Defined building their brand on being Godly, Bethany is nothing but. Her family is relatively wealthy, and she runs an Instagram account called sheworkssmart selling 3k courses and boasting about how much money she makes.

Yes, she’s not only begging her followers for gifts instead of throwing a baby shower, but also bragging about having added things for her current son to her unborn child’s registry. If she’s making as much money as she’s claiming to be, why does she need other people to buy her gifts? Charity is a tenet of Christianity, so if anything she ought to bless her followers with her abundance of wealth. And while she’d no doubt say something like “oh these people just blessed me out of the goodness of their heart”, she wouldn’t have posted her registry publicly if she didn’t want to guilt her followers into buying her stuff.

Hebrews says, “[k]eep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have…” and Proverbs says “[b]etter is a poor man who walks in his integrity than a rich man who is crooked in his ways.” Sure, while there aren’t any explicit Bible verses saying don’t exploit the people who support you into funding your own lifestyle, it goes without saying her behavior is shady and selfish at best, downright sinful at worst.

Christians shouldn’t be known for their grifting but for their generosity. Yet, in all my time following Bethany, I don’t recall ever seeing her even do like a $20 Starbucks gift card giveaway. It’s quite telling that at nearly every opportunity to be generous Bethany (and the rest of Girl Defined) choose to focus only on themselves and their needs. Time and time again, they’ve had opportunities to show true, sacrificial charity like Jesus did and yet, they not only fail but are smug and boastful about it.

For all Bethany’s poetic waxing about not finding your identity in gender and how we’re not the king of our lives, perhaps she should read the Bible a bit more closely. After all, it’s not the love of self that’s the root of all evil but the love of money.

Rating Girl Defined’s Conference Session Titles

Girl Defined are having a conference…

While I should blog about something of substance, I’m going to rate Girl Defined’s conference session titles and determine whether I’d go to them (or not) based on title alone.

Disclaimer: ratings are based 100% on my personal, irrelevant opinions.

  • Who is Liza Proch? What makes her an authority on social media? Does she work in social media?
  • Why Christian Girls and not Christian Women?
  • Why not just Christians in general?
  • Why Christian at all? That’s a given since it’s a Christian conference…
  • She looks confident
  • Name sounds like a worship leader
  • Flowers in the background are pretty
  • Relevant topic as there are different struggles for women on social media, particularly girls

Would I go? Maybe.

Rating: 6.2/10

  • Again, no clue who this lady is and what makes her think she can tell me how to date. The Bible barely mentions romantic relationships, so anything on this topic is going to be purely subjective
  • Her hat is cute tho
  • Her hair is fabulous
  • Her pose is oddly similar to the first lady’s
  • The “in a Christ-centered way” is redundant. It’s literally a Christian conference hosted by Christians. By it’s very definition, everything is going to be Christ-centered there

Would I go? No.

Rating: 4.8/10

  • W h a t?
  • Why only 5?
  • Dempsey Warren is an awesome name
  • I really like her top
  • Nice, nature-ish background
  • Doesn’t have the word “Christian” in it
  • Why the emphasis on being single? Isn’t hospitality something all Christians should display?
  • How is being hospitable as a married woman any different from being hospitable as a single? The Bible instructs us to all serve one another in love and makes no mention of marital status, or gender, so like… there’s the entire session right there

Would I go? No.

Rating: 3.5/10

  • Finally some diversity
  • She has a morning person smile
  • Topic’s not about dating or how to serve others
  • Doesn’t include the word “Christian”, “Christ-centered,” or “God-honoring,”
  • Not sure what gives her any authority on friendships though – does she have a lot of friends?
  • “Deep” and “Meaningful” seems wordy; one or the other would suffice

Would I go? Probably not. I’m trying to avoid making friends at the moment.

Rating: 8/10

  • It’s Bethany!
  • I like the color of her top
  • Includes the word Christian. Sis, it’s a Christian conference led by Christians, everything is from a Christian pov
  • Lust and sexual desire – I have trouble seeing how she can address both in a single session, given that sexual desire is perfectly natural and healthy; it’s lust that’s sinful and I don’t vibe with how they’re lumped together as it sends girls/young women the wrong message
  • Good topic, since the church loves pretending women have no sex drive and don’t struggle with lust
  • I want to come at her for not being an authority, but I know neither her, nor her personal struggles with lust, and this is pretty subjective.

Would I go? Yeah, sure.

Rating: 7.5/10

  • It’s Kristen!
  • She wearing mustard yellow, which is one of my favorite colors
  • Not about marriage, sexuality, or relationships in general
  • Doesn’t include “Christian, God-honoring, Christ-like, etc.”
  • Doesn’t include “girl” or “women”
  • Good topic for Christians in general
  • Why only 3?
  • The wording is funky – I’d have written, “3 truths to overcome fear, anxiety, and worry”

Would I go? Ya.

Rating: 9.8/10

  • Some more melanin
  • Her make-up is on point
  • Appreciate that it says God’s good design as the church often acts like women were created as an afterthought to men, which isn’t true
  • Probably revolves around marriage and motherhood though
  • Also I’d have just written “Biblical Womanhood 101: God’s Good Design”

Would I go? Nope!

Rating: 8.1/10

  • Why girl and not woman? The goal is to grow up
  • Her hair is nice
  • She has a nice smile
  • She looks like a morning person
  • This seems like a no brainer though; if your faith isn’t changing you, something is wrong

Would I go? Eh…. no.

Rating: 8.7/10

  • If by practical steps, she means learning how to cook, manage a budget, and household duties. Yes. Everyone, women and men, should live on their own (whether with roommates or solo) for at least one year before getting married because essentially all the skills one needs for marriage will be learned in that year. And everyone should know how to cook, clean, budget, etc. These are basic life skills any adults should be able to do.
  • If by practical steps, she means wasting away for years waiting on some man. No.
  • Single girl? So single women just don’t exist?
  • Is she related to Kristen (or her husband)
  • Great hair
  • Title is a bit vague
  • Doesn’t mention Christian

Would I go? No. Believe it or not, some of us single gals are content to stay that way.

Rating: 6.5/10

  • It’s my girl Portia, again
  • Guess they couldn’t find a third, POC to speak on this topic
  • Genuinely shocked they’re even going to address anything race-related so kudos???
  • I’d actually be interested in this. Ultimately, in Christ there is unity. At the same time, Jesus was all about social justice, and uplifting and defending those who were oppressed, so ignoring racial inequality isn’t a good look for Christians. God in general is all about social justice and taking care of the poor/oppressed.
  • Not about romantic relationships, serving others, or sexuality

Would I go. Absolutely. Even if it’s a mess, I’m all about that schadenfreude.

Rating: 10/10

  • Did she go to seminary? Get a doctorate in theological studies? What education does she have that allows her to teach anyone how to study the Bible
  • Her scarf is nice
  • Her last name seems cool but I literally can’t read it because of this font – Marciag?
  • She looks old enough to have some actual knowledge
  • It’s a good topic
  • Love that it’s encouraging women to enjoy the Bible

Would I go. No. Look, I’m all about the Holy Spirit and whatnot but given how insistent a lot of particularly conservative Christians are that the KJV is the most accurate version of the Bible (lol!!!), I don’t want anyone who hasn’t had some sort of formal education on this topic to teach me or anyone else how to study the Bible.

Rating: 2/10

  • A good topic
  • Not about marriage or relationships
  • Nice glasses
  • Nothing dumb like “Christian” worship
  • Hope it focuses on something besides music though, because you can worship God doing anything
  • She looks old enough to have some actual experience in what she’s talking about

Would I go? Probably.

Rating: 9/10

Would I go to Girl Defined’s conference based on these titles (as a young, Christian woman)?


These topics are somewhat shallow and easy for anyone to give their personal “convictions” on, which isn’t something that interests me (if it can’t be backed by Scripture, in context, it’s nonsense). Much of the discourse surrounding Biblical womanhood and femininity is somehow still rooted in culture (which is largely based off the pagan, ancient Greek society most of the NT challenged), not Scripture.

Where’s a session or two on awesome women in the Bible, like Esther, Miriam, Deborah, and Ruth, and what they teach us about Biblical womanhood? Why not tackle some hard topics, such as does God allow women to preach to/teach men, do women literally have to be silent in the church, or what Paul meant when he said women will be saved by childbirth. Even in terms of marriage, what about not settling for Mr. Good Enough because you’re in a rush to have God-honoring sex. Or having higher expectations for husbands than wives (since they’re the ones leading)?

Nevertheless, the topics are very on-point for their target audience (Christian girls wanting to be get married).

God-Honoring Hypocrisy: Sex, Purity, and Girl Defined

Both the ladies of Girl Defined are well into their 30s and married, yet their brand is still called Girl Defined and all they talk about is singleness and purity, of which it rings a bit hollow to wax poetic about waiting for marriage while getting laid by your husbands regularly.

They’d benefit rom rebranding themselves as Woman Defined/aging with their fanbase, and talk about something else. Literally anything else. Even if they don’t want to talk about motherhood and marriage, there are hundreds of topics in the Bible they could be schooling young women on besides singleness and purity (any of the fruits of the spirit, how to know what God’s will is for your life (not always marriage/motherhood); talking about the various, awesome women in the Bible, etc), but I digress. Preying on young women’s insecurities about not finding a partner is lucrative/

Girl Defined largely built their platform around modesty standards they no longer adhere to. Nearly, all their videos are some iteration on modesty or purity.

How people dress and date is up to them. However, Girl Defined’s modesty standards have clearly changed as the years have progresses. Bethany of Girl Defined has a thrift store online in which she sells the same sort of clothes she claims are immodest (booty shorts, mini skirts, etc.)

Not knocking any of those things, I will die with my mini-skirts clasped between my cold, dead fingers, but it rings hypocritical to build an entire platform around modest is hottest, only to toss those standards out the window for a quick buck. And then remain mum about it.

Furthermore, Bethany’s notoriously called shorteralls immodest in their book, Project Modesty, yet one scroll through her Instagram reveals she has indeed worn shorteralls several times…

 A picture of a young, blonde woman wearing short overalls while pushing a stroller down a sidewalk. Image credit: fundie snark.

Yet, she’s failed to address this despite being called out on it.

Now, it’s normal as we age and encounter various perspectives, beliefs, and individuals that our opinions shift, so them realizing their modesty standards were stupid isn’t the issue. It’s the building a platform using standards you no longer adhere too and not admitting that to your viewers for me. Christians ought to be transparent (Proverbs 11:3); when we’re not it casts doubt on everything else we say and weakens the message of the Gospel (Luke 16: 10). Particularly when you’re being dishonest about something so silly as wearing shorteralls – like who even cares? But if they’re not willing to be honest over something that meaningliess, what else are they being dishonest about?

Girl Defined also generally spew a lot of general nonsense about God-honoring make-up and God’s perfect design for clothing of which the Bible says, “work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.” (Philippians 2:12) aka mind your own business. Furthermore, God made us without make-up so if we literally take His preferences into mind, we’d wear no make-up at all. There’s no catch all for what God considers honoring and it’s not up to Girl Defined (or anyone) to tell you how to dress.

God’s “original purpose for clothing” is nudity (Read Genesis). God didn’t cover Adam and Eve because of sin, but because they felt ashamed, were hiding from God, and they literally wanted clothing. The human body isn’t immodest or sexual, neither is the female form. The onus of lusting is put on the luster, not the person being lusted after (Mark 9:47). I’ve always found it interesting that the men who seem to struggle the most with lusting after knees and elbows are usually those claiming to be Christians (isn’t self-control a fruit of the Spirit? And didn’t Jesus say they’ll know us by our fruit?). Seems like the church is doing something wrong if non-Christian men are able to exhibit more self-control around exposed thighs than those claiming to be Christians…

Modesty standards vary from culture to culture and have changed over time. That’s not to say there isn’t something to adhering to cultural modesty standards in order to be “set apart”, but frankly that’s between you and God, and more than likely God probably could care less about what you wear and more about why you wear it.  Modern modesty culture is rooted in a superiority, I’m-not-like-other-girls attitude that’s vain and self-serving and has nothing to do with honoring God. Modesty isn’t just about clothing; you can walk around in sackcloth and ashes, yet be immodest in other areas such as flaunting your wealth, bragging about your ability to pop out kids, or even talking about how holy you are compared to “the World.”

Lastly, Girl Defined has many, many blog posts rehashing the same, tired content mixed in with some unusually ridiculous (deleted) ones (How to Show Love Towards Prostitutes, Homosexuals, and Muslims for one lol). The church has zero problem embracing cheaters, pedophiles, gluttons, liars, and abusers, even going so far as to elect them as pastors and politicians, all of which the Bible condemns. So if you really need to learn how to love these folks, you’re the one that needs Jesus).

One of the biggest issues with Girl-Defined’s brand of Christianity is their willingness to dismiss or outright ignore certain sins (exploiting the poor, treating immigrants/orphans badly, violence, slander/dishonesty/gossip, cheating, abuse, etc.), while frothing at the mouth over others (abortion, sex outside of marriage, etc.). But you can’t claim to have some moral high-ground on certain things while entirely ignoring others the Bible equally (if not more so) condemns and then act *surprise pikachu face* when folks call you out on your hypocrisy.  If you can’t even be consistent in condemning the very things your worldview condemns, no duh you’re gonna be the subject of derision. Anyone can pick up a Bible, read it, and see that “God-Honoring” hypocrisy  for themselves.

It’d be nice if Girl Defined ever addressed this hypocrisy and just admitted their perspectives have changed (or maybe they were never theirs to begin with, judging by some of their earlier blog posts). Even the Bible calls the “double minded” “unstable in all [their] ways” (James 1:8). 

Girl Defined, don’t be unstable in all your ways and don’t just honor God with your hair and make-up. Rather in “…whatever you do, do all to the Glory of God.” (Corinthians 10:31).  And dishonesty and hate aren’t very God honoring.