Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Feminine or Feminist?

~Erin Blair

Our society today, especially with the feminist movement, has taught a skewed version of how a woman should be.  She should be a strong and independent woman “who don’t need no man.”  But is this Biblical?  Is society’s teaching of a brash and prideful woman what God had in mind when he created woman (Gen. 2:22)?  Are women in the Lord’s church to be callous and degrading of their brothers?

I overheard one day a woman telling her friend, “Yeah, he’s just another paycheck coming in.”  She was saying this about her husband! I was appalled at her poor outlook on her husband.  I have also heard the saying, “A husband is a person who, after having taken out the trash, gives the impression of cleaning the whole house.”  We laugh at these antics and brush them off, not giving them a second thought.  But this is what the society we live in is molding our daughter’s minds into thinking that women are the rulers of the house and we have to keep men under our thumb?  But what about what God has to say about how women are to be?

It pains me when I hear of and see women who say thing like, “I will never get married and have children. Instead I will do what I want when I want to do it and spend my money on myself.”  Or when people joke about the wife being the “boss” of the husband.  We could then continue this article in the direction of the roles of the wife and the husband.  But I want to take it another direction – is God’s woman to be feminine or feminist?

We read of many good and bad examples of women in the Bible, such as Jezebel (1 Kings 18) and the lovely Hannah (1 Samuel 1&2).  How does God want his women?  In 1 Peter 5:5 we read, “Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble.”  Also, in the Sermon on the Mount, our Lord tells us, “Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.” (Matt. 5:5)  We are commanded to be humble and meek.  Does this mean we are to be a doormat, allowing others to walk on us?  Does this mean that we are commanded to have a low self-esteem, to think that we are nobody, that we are unimportant?  Not at all!  We are commanded to be meek, yes, but what does this mean? After all, it is not a word I use hardly ever! The best illustration I can think of to describe meekness is a huge draft horse such as a Clysdale or a Shire.  Those horses are huge and can very easily weigh a ton.  They could easily kill a man with one kick or stampede, but do they? No, they are under control, they are meek.  Meekness is power under control.  Just like that draft horse pulling the large tree stump out of the ground or pulling the plow, we are to have power (1 Cor. 1:18, Eph. 3:20, 2 Tim. 1:7) but we are to be gentle, or under control.  The feminist movement wants to empower women, which is all good and great until you question, power over what? Over men. Over the church. Over other women. 
God also wants his women kind.  In Ephesians 5:32 we read, “And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.”    The key word there is kind.  I know many women who are not kind, who do not have that beautiful agape love for one another, even sadly in the church.  Being kind is a trait that is worked at, a skill that we must acquire.  In Acts 9 we read of a very kind lady – Dorcas, “Now there was at Joppa a certain disciple named Tabitha, which by interpretation is called Dorcas: this woman was full of good works and almsdeeds which she did.”  When we see someone in need, do we approach them offering our help and love?  The world would say “No, look out for yourself.  Look out for number 1.” 

Along the same lines as looking out for yourself, the Bible tells us of a beautiful woman who did the exact opposite.  We do not know her name, or what she looked like, but she was beautiful indeed.  In Proverbs 31:10-31 we read of a lady known only as the virtuous woman.  We read of her taking care of her family and her house, sacrificing perhaps much needed, or wanted, sleep (Prov. 31:15).  She goes and buys items her family needs and provides for her children and husband – she was not lazy! (Prov. 31:13,14, 16, 21, & 27)  Not only does she provide for her house, but she makes her husband look good (Prov. 31:11,12, & 23)!  How often do we make our husband look good to others? Do we build him up in front of others, recognizing his hard work for the Lord?  Are we a wife that he is proud to be the husband of (Prov. 31:28-29)?  What about our children?  The woman of God takes care of her children and loves them dearly, looking after their spiritual welfare (Prov. 31:26; 1 Sam. 1:11, 28).  She does not see her children as a burden, but as a blessing (Psalm 127:3)!  God’s woman also sees to those in need, providing for others who have nothing (Prov. 31:19-20).  I can almost guarantee you that this lovely woman would have been laughed at in our day and age for her feminine qualities, her gracious and kind spirit. 

So as we continue on in the corporate jobs and meet women who are brash and callous, let us remember the beautiful women of God listed in the Bible and model ourselves after them.  After all, the world has plenty of women who are harsh, callous, rude, and overbearing.  The world needs more women who are kind, gentle, soft, loving, and meek (1 Peter 3:4).

Erin resides in Ben Wheeler Tx with her husband who preaches for the Ben Wheeler congregation. Erin has been involved with preparing and organizing the work of the church since she was a teenager by teaching all ages of Bibles classes, helping prepare and organize Ladies Days, Prom Alternatives, Youth Rallies and VBS.  She is currently works as a paralegal for a law firm. She and her husband also spend their time enjoying their sweet dog, chickens, ducks, quail…etc.  Life is never dull at her house.

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