Breaking my silence…with this.

no-girls-allowedi guess it’s about time to break my silence.

there were no problems.  my schedule has been packed.  my thoughts have been random.  my brain has been tired.  the rest of my body has been, also.  every morning and evening when i have sat down to write, the results have been incomplete.  i’ve heard of this thing called writer’s block.  maybe that’s what i have…

but i’m going to plow through tonight.  true to form, it’s random…but it’s what i’ve been thinking about this evening.

i grew up being taught that men were to be the leaders…in the home…in society…in marriage…in the church.  i’m pretty sure it was based on a combination of physics, anthropology, cultural tradition, and in my case, some bible interpretation.

i guarantee you there are very few people who have digested the male-female debate more than yours truly.  i’ve read so many books on the subject, i’ve lost count.  i’ve studied…and re-studied…every passage of relevance in the bible.  i’ve gone to conferences where the topic was front and center.  i’ve listened to those i know and respect and to those who came with only a recommendation.

i worked in a mission organization whose co-founder and CEO is a woman.  she was my boss and still continues to be a close, trusted friend.  she is an author, a speaker, a visionary, a seminary professor, and one of the best preachers i have ever heard.  her life and words have taught and inspired thousands.

she was raised in a church that taught that women were to be silent in the church and to be quietly submissive in their marriages and in society.  i’m grateful she heard other voices along the way…voices that gave her a broader interpretation of scripture and the confidence to use her talents and gifts to the fullest for the good of the kingdom.

this past tuesday, i sat outside the door to our children’s worship room and listened to angela, our children’s pastor, preach the good news about jesus to a room full of kids…with passion and clarity and boldness.  some would say that was where she needed to be teaching…in front of children and their moms.  i say she can…and should…do it in front of anyone.   she suffers no shortcomings because of her gender.  she’s an amazing leader and motivator and communicator.

last wednesday evening, i attended a dinner to promote the family mentoring program for the chin refugee ministry, held at a huge church in our community.  after nearly two hours and five or six presentations, a lady got up to close the meeting.  she was the host church’s volunteer coordinator for family mentoring.

she’s a forty-something mom of kids and a wife of a teacher.  on the outside, she was stereotypically conservative…a perfect match for the traditional church family she was representing.  but then she opened her mouth.

she spoke with power and conviction.  she was articulate and convincing.  the room hung on the words of this simple housewife, as if she had the calling of a pastor.  she gave a passionate, biblical appeal to live our lives the way jesus would…to care for those in need and to seek the lost.  to say that we were inspired would be an epic understatement.

afterward, i went up to her and told her how moved i was and asked her how often she gets to speak to her whole church family.  they really need to hear her.  she chuckled and embarrassingly said that probably wasn’t ever going to happen.

i told her i was going to have her come and speak to us at north point.  we need some of what she’s got.

we need to carefully rethink and restudy the women-in-leadership-issue.  soon.

there are simply too many women’s voices being left behind.

just what i’m thinking tonight.


5 thoughts on “Breaking my silence…with this.

  1. Man’s (and by that I mean “man,” not “human”) desire for power is inextricably linked to fear. The fear comes from a lack of peace, which is the result of the inability to relinquish our sense of control. Lack of preparation and performance shortcomings are often exposed during this process, and clearly no man wants that to happen.

  2. And right behind you in thinking through that matter would be myself. After growing up at FCCHB and receiving and education at PCC, I never came up with a good explanation related to the hierarchy of men vs women in leadership. I mean Jesus spoke to and about certain populations- women, slaves- doesnt tell me that he condoned the hierarchy- but speaking within a cultura. Jesus was radical! Now, we go to a Methodist church with a woman senior pastor, and a whole new world is out there. The traditional evangelical churches and more liberal denominations should not be so quick to write each other off. In other countries we would all be lumped into one group- Christians- and these differences in theology would seem smaller than they do here. It’s how we Love others that shows the world who Jesus is- that’s what I was taught 🙂

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