“I’ve heard enough of the Me Too movement. I’m over it.”
Anger. Sadness. Disappointment. Hurt. These words and feelings swirled in my confused and shocked mind and heart as I sat there beside him attempting to smile and yet struggling with how to even utter sentences. “You clearly don’t get the movement at all” is what formed in my brain but failed to leave my lips.
For those unfamiliar with the Me Too movement, “it is a social movement against sexual abuse and sexual harassment where people publicize allegations of sex crimes.” (Wikipedia). It sprung in 2006 but gained momentum in 2017 when many famous women spoke up through social media about sexual harassment experiences they had had in the workplace.
How does one respond to such a blatant sexist statement when it comes from a man who has authority over you? Not only is it a blow to your heart when you like and respect the man, but add that he is a leader, and in this case, a Christian and it feels absolutely futile to event attempt to correct this person. Sadly, when I think deeply about women experiencing any kind of discrimination, I’ve witnessed it happen as much inside the walls of the church as I have outside of them. I wish I could have looked him in the eyes and asked, “What if something had been done to the woman in your life? I don’t think you would be speaking so flippantly and with such lack of love about a subject that is a girl’s worst nightmare. You are a part of the problem.”
Photo by Jake Melara - @jakemelara
I want to say it's okay to have doubts, questions and not agree with everything that you have been told. I’m on a journey to understand what the Bible truly says about a woman’s role and function in the home, in the church and in her community (i.e. society). I’ve gone too much of my life just believing the messages conveyed to me in my environment and not daring to listen to other perspectives or doing my own research. I have my own personal relationship with God, I love His Word, and He has given me an intellect to dig through the sheets of the Bible for myself. He has also deposited the Holy Spirit inside of me to help guide me in deciphering what God is communicating through his Sacred Text. In other words, he speaks to me too.
Photo by Priscilla Du Preez - @priscilladupreez
Here is what jumps out of the pages of the Bible in vibrant colours to me; Jesus elevated women when He came to earth. He gave females dignity in a society that discarded them like trash. In the old Testament, God created laws to protect them. He knew their names and gave them a voice. He made space for their narratives to be depicted throughout the different books of the big Book. Many who supported Jesus financially during his ministry on earth and who followed him faithfully, were, you guessed it, women. The first people to head to the tomb after he died were females. And some of the most ardent and devoted Jesus followers in history have been and to this day, are women.
I’m proud to be a woman. I’m thankful for my gender even when it’s the sex that’s been considered the lesser one across the globe since sin made its ugly way into the garden of Eden. Regardless, of the countless challenges and discrimination that we face, I still consider it an honour that I was made in His image as a female.
What I didn't articulate that sunny day as I sat next to him is what I'm saying with my whole heart now.
I will never be over women using their voices to speak up and speak out against horrific things that have been done to them in order to create awareness and change.
I will never be over hearing what another woman has to say about any topic.
I will never be over how God created woman as the crown of his creation.
I will never be over how Jesus provides women a place at the table.
I will never be over how wildly He loves us. Jesus gets us, ladies. He truly gets us. And I’ll never get over that.
Photo by Omar Lopez - @omarlopez1
Happy International Women's Day
to all of you fierce and beautiful women! (March 8, 2021)