Safe Place with Ruth Graham

In recent years there has been discussion about a “war on women”. I am not sure what that means. Perhaps it started with a woman’s right over her own body, her right to choose. Or equal pay for equal work, though I see that as a human rights issue.  The glass ceiling, which seems to me to be shattered. So I am not clear on what the “war on women” is over. Who is at war with us and what are the issues? If men are at war with women that seems foolish since so many men are looking for a woman and vise versa.  If it is a political agenda by one party or the other, then it is far from altruistic. It is manipulative.  And I think women are smarter than that! Frankly, I don’t think there is a war on women! It’s been made up and talked about so often and so loudly that it’s made folks think there is a war on women. Back in the 60s and 70s there was “women’s lib”. We were told that we were oppressed and need to burn our bras and go to work in a man’s world. Fine with me if that is what you want to do…why make such a stink about it? We were told we had to be equal to men. I don’t think that is true. I have always felt women were stronger, smarter, more creative than men. And I believe God made men and women different. A look at our anatomy tells us that!! Each has a distinct role to play – not one better or greater or more significant than the other. Just different from each other and, I for one, am glad. I like my differences. I celebrate the differences. I like being a woman – always have. Someone once asked me on a panel if, as a woman, it was hard to be a minister. I don’t look at it that way. My ministry is to both men and women – it is not gender specific. Ministry takes barriers down; St. Paul said “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” What was Jesus’ view of women? Jesus associated freely with women. Women traveled with his band of disciples as He taught throughout Israel. They sat under His teaching. He did miracles on their behelf. He listened to them, comforted them, loved them, healed them, talked with them, touched  them publicly and was touched by them. No doubt He laughed with them in the day to day discourse as He was a man of joy and attended parties. He cared about the things they cared  about and sought to calm their fears. It was through a woman that Jesus entered the world; He was cradled in her arms, receiving nourishment from her breasts. Women were quick to understand grace and forgiveness; they were the first to declare He was the Son of God, the first to understand His mission and the first to carry the news that He was alive on the Resurrection morning. Women were the last at the Cross and the first at the tomb. He was gentle and kind. He didn’t patronize or make jokes at a woman’s expense. He loved women. When we are in Christ as a woman we need not “fight” for our place or position. It is bestowed upon us with love and gentleness. We are tenderly loved, cared for, enjoyed, honored and gifted. He doesn’t hold us back…He wants us to reach our full potential in every way. In Him we are free to do that – even better – we are empowered!

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