"i just feel like i'm one of the guys" and other subtleties working against equality

blog i'm just one of the guys

last week i read a post on a friend’s facebook page about the emergence christianity gathering in memphis. i wasn’t there so i can’t speak into anything that happened there, but she made an interesting observation that caught my eye.  when addressed with a question about gender inequality in emergence christianity, several of the female speakers responded with “well, i don’t feel unequal, i feel like i’m just one of the guys.”

i know some women who have made it very far in their craft and passion and are sought after as female speakers and leaders in certain circles. i have deep respect for how far they have come and love that their voice is being heard.

but this kind of statement makes me feel really sad because it tells a story that reflects reality for so many–the guys have the power and for the women to play they must learn how to blend into them.

it also reflects that when women have “made it” they sometimes forget there are a lot of others who haven’t.  and really won’t unless there is deep healing in the roots of many of our systems and structures.

i know how to hang with the guys and have said the exact same statement before. i have been on many teams over time where i am the only woman, far before i was involved in christian ministry. when i graduated from college i was an engineer for the phone company as part of a management fast-track (yes, imagine me, the one who never had a math class in college or graduate school trying to design engineering plans for phone cables in new neighborhoods & buildings). i was the only woman on a team of good old phone company boys, and they treated me so well and i did feel part in a lot of ways. but i was kind of like their daughter, not their equal.  later, after i had kids & got more involved as a lay leader at several churches, i intersected all the time with the guys. and as much as they wanted what i had to bring, they were the ones who controlled the table; no women were part of the real inner circle. years later, when i finally made it to senior leadership in a big church and ended up being the only female pastor on a team of men, i learned how to be more comfortable in my own skin with them.

but the reality was that to play, i’d have to adjust to them, pick up on their cues, listen to their jokes, blend into their culture.

yeah, i am more clear than ever that i don’t want to “just feel like one of the guys.”

i want to feel connected fully & freely as people trying to work together, dream together, collaborate together, live together, learn together, love together, as equals and as friends.

i know so many guys are working so hard at creating greater inclusivity when it comes to gender & race & sexuality & a whole bunch of other things. i am grateful, and i know it’s so easy to have white men in a double bind; no matter what they do it’s not good enough.  and i know so many women are doing the best to step up to the plate and can’t be held to every word they share or don’t share.

but part of our responsibility is to never dismiss gender inequality (or any other kind) for others.  even if it’s not an issue for some, it is an incredibly painful and real issue for countless others. being dismissive about it and saying “well, i just don’t feel it” is a way of making it seem like it doesn’t exist.

and it does.

but it’s easier to pretend it doesn’t and that we’ve come further than we really have and play with people who won’t rock the boat too much.

what it often boils down is power continuing to attract the same kind of power with a different twist of a few strong women who know how to be “one of the guys.”

i think our best hope is to be brave enough to create completely new wineskins.

we keep trying to pour new wine into old wineskins and that’s why it all tastes so bad.

instead, we need flatter structures, shared leadership, teams of equals–men & women & black & white & rich & poor & gay & straight & liberal & conservative & married & single & educated & uneducated & extroverts & introverts–around bigger tables, in living rooms & coffee shops (instead of golf courses & seminaries), who are planning events, cultivating communities, and leading initiatives together side-by-side in all kinds of creative ways.

we need to throw away the old template of a bunch of guys with power inviting a select few into their select group to maintain their select culture and start creating a new story together.

a story of innovation, where we don’t rely on the way it’s always been and start making something new.

a story of equality, where we learn how to be together as friends and partners and teammates, not commodities.

a story of healing, where we are actively restoring the brokenness so many have as it relates to being included & valued.

a story of dignity, where we are participating in stepping into the full image of God in us and calling it out in others.

a story of humility, where our goals aren’t centered on money or success in the world’s eyes but on caring for others, relationships, and fanning others freedom into flame.

a story of justice, where we bring a little taste of heaven to earth, here, now.

please, let’s stop saying “we let women lead” and “i just feel like one of the guys” and start living out a new story, together.

it’s time.

Kathy Escobar

Kathy Escobar co-pastors at The Refuge, a Christian community and mission center in North Denver and is the author of Faith Shift: Finding Your Way Forward When Everything You Believe is Coming Apart and several other books.

37 Comments

  • Thank you for this, Kathy. I recall during one particularly painful time in my ecclesial history, when I was in a position of speaking truth to power in a church I had helped plant. After several months of trying to restore the lines of communication between me & the founding pastor – accepting his invitations to conversation, only to be spoken at – I found myself in my living room (I lived in community at the time) having a conversation with the church’s associate pastor who had been a friend & mentor. I poured out my heart & asked honestly – how am I supposed to receive teaching from someone I no longer respect or trust? (I had watched many families & staff members be driven away by the pastor’s controlling behavior.) The only advice I was given was that I had to be as aggressive as he was – I had to mirror his behavior and give it right back to him. Then I would gain his respect. I knew I was not willing to do that, but it wasn’t until I later read “Introverts in the Church” that I realized just how ridiculous that request had been. Besides, it wasn’t that I wanted to regain his respect, it was that he had lost mine. Whether it’s gender, race, culture, sexuality, personality type… we should not ask one another to give up who we are in order to be a vital part of the body. We should look for ways to affirm, honor & lift up one another’s unique giftings & contributions – even if that makes community a little less uniform, a little less organized, a little more messy. At least it will be a beautiful mess, reflecting the body as it is – not as one person or group would have it to be.

    Reply
    • Hello Kimberley,

      And thank you for sharing the expereince that was painful for you as you describe. I hope that for you, you would find fellowship that honours you when you speak truth in love with leadership which chooses ro serve and you can enjoy mutual submission and edification in such environments.

      What you describe when you mention “how am I supposed to receive teaching from someone I no longer respect or trust” was very simlar to the occasion I had with the female leader practicing false prophecy and misguidingly claiming she was being “bold” in the face of male opression. On the occasion of the two of us meeting with the pastor, I did explain that I had lost respect for her for this, which she didn’t like and the way the pastro put it was that he couldn’t have me not respecting her.

      Althought very dissapointing at the time and difficult to expereince with the rejection of being told the church was not fro me by the pastor, on reflection i realise thart his actions worked for my benefit. A female friend spoke into this powerfully and said that I was being rejected just as Christ had been. (I think I needed it to be a female for my own affirmation as the initiall difficulty had been with a female). Also what worked powerfully was a conversation with a respected member of that chutch who said he had been praying for 3 weeks to know what to say to me. We talked of the prophetic and how that particular church wasn’t ready to hear the prophetic. So again powerful words being spoken to me, this time of affirmation of this gifting for my edification. And the result of that conversation helped me with the exercising of gifting, and what to be aware of with the consequences within church for wisdom in similar situations.

      I am at peace, and have found creative environments in which to have fulfillment in place of the frustration I was expereincing with Church and church culture as it is.

      I did a stand up comedy gig last night. Amazingly, a respected leader in the Christian community here in Scotland has stated “I didn’t really mean to do it but it just seemed to happen – I watched some GodTV. After flicking through the Australian, UK and USA channels the thought struck me that there has been a role reversal in the Western world – stand-up comedians have become the prophets of our generation, and preachers have become stand-up comedians.”

      What I think he meant to assert by that was that comedians have filled a role that prophets are meant to. And that pastors have done more to entertain than pastor.

      Well, does this hardship mean that God has a plan for me in what has been happening. You bet! It may not be as grand as prophecying throught comedy or it might but I have been strengthened in the Lord, am more at peace and more full of joy throught the expereinces I have had and how i have chosen to engage with them.

      I pray that you will know God’s will for you at this time. And I hope you will make choices that will use the pain you have expreinced as a springboard to alchemy into somethign beautiful.

      Thank you againg for sharing and God bless.

      Adam

      Reply
    • oh kimberly, when i read your story i can just feel that moment and how those are the kinds of answers we so often get instead of addressing all of the stuff underneath that is worth hacking at to really get to a new place. yes, i’ll take a beautiful mess anyday. it’s so much work to shift power and share and figure out how to do this together but in the end we learn something that i think we’re supposed to be learning. bringing who we are fully to the table is so rare. and that’s sad! thanks for reading and sharing and all the goodness you always bring to the conversations out here.

      Reply
  • Hello Kathy,

    I do feel angry on reading your lastest posting. Angry becuase I have been in situations where this patriarchal opression has occured and i hve seen this kind of thin that you speak against happen. There are valid cases where “the guys have the power”
    as you say, and I agree with what you say in that “it is an incredibly painful and real issue” for many people.

    What you have shared about being a pstor in a mega church and the inequality you have struggled with tells one story of such.

    What I am also angry about Kathy, (and this in no way is to disregard the valid and real poitns you are making) is the repeated lack of empathy, and inability and unwillingness that comes across to see things fro the other perspective of gender. Are you willin to listen as much as you want to be listent to about this, really?

    I may have menteioned this before but I wllsy this again a female leader ibn my last church tried to excuse her own conduct of false prophecy which had for me was “incredibly panful” with regard to a personal issue. Using the very excuse that it is the “men that have the power” and trying to make me out to be the one who had ben the perpetrator of difficulty rathert than having been the one who was mistreated. Continuing in the same manner for some time she asserted that “men have not listened to women, have been demeaning to them and have caused them to have low self streem”. This supported in a meeting with the pastor with the pastor’s support. Leading to a proble I had with the pastor, resulting in him saying that the church was “not for you”. this is just one instance among many.

    In your recent posting, you talked about “a lot of people have reasons to be mad at God, and i believe it’s a natural part of any relationship.”

    As mentioned, I have had anger for a couple of reesons on reading your posting partily out of empathy with women that you talk of, partly because, frankly I don’t feel listened by you on this issue in spite of what you say about equality and integrity. There are many men out there with similar issues towards women abusing their power over them, but society doesn’t give a voice to such, wheres women have feminism. I wonder also if you have anger that you neeed to talk to God about and get soem help with. I will move on from the anger I have expereinced by forgiving, prying for and wanting to see the best for others who I have had anger towards. What you do is your choice.

    May I wish you all the wll the best with your dream trip with your mum to Isael / Palestine. I pray that it will be a fruitful time for you and an exprience you will never forget.

    Yours (temporarily angry)

    Adam

    Reply
    • hey adam, the online environment is sometimes really hard to process some of these things in and there is so much room for misunderstanding. i know you are passionate about equality, too, and that you struggle sometimes here with some of the things that i say about women’s equality. i am not sure what would help you feel more listened to? i know you have a strong story of oppression by a female pastor and that is so painful in the exact same way as others feeling oppressed and no one is trying to minimize that. i am not quite sure what you are looking for in response but i respect our differences on how we intersect with this. i do not long for women to be over men in any way. that’s the last thing i want. my hope is equality, side by side, teammates, friends, brothers & sisters, alongside one another living the ways of love. i am not sure i can say it any more clear. i appreciate you processing here and it’s just so important to hear others’ perspectives but there’s never a need to agree or see it the exact same way. my role is just to tell what’s on my heart and let it stir what it does.

      Reply
      • Thanks Kathy,

        I do feel listened to from what you have written above. And it is true that ther is room for misunderstanding.

        I guess where we are coming from with the equality / dignity side of things is to have this aim of mutual submission and mutually edification. The brothers sisters beside each other in love thing. With this in mind, I am equally angry about patriarchal opression as I am about rampant feminist rhetoric.

        Can I suggest a few things in answer to what you say in what you have mentioned about what yuo can say so I feel “listened to” and what I am “looking for in response”.

        Firstly, (and from studting feminist theology I speak with some awareness of how this works) is this issue with power. Please ackowlege in principle in your postings that it could be women having power ove men as much as men having power over women. What I know from my studies that feminist theology is mostly driven by power. That is with a hermeutic of suspicion towards the bible having written by men i.e. treating the bible as if ti “condons ab use of women” (someone on one of my courses with a feminist appoach strongtly asserted that – shocking I know!) and a hermeneutic od actualisation i.e. the empowerment of women.

        We also see a worldview which is common in it being seen to be good to treat women as victims and to put men in fear, presumably wiht the assumption that women would be mistreated in smoe way otherwise. I strongly belive that this is not dignified for women or men to take such approach. I see women who have been throught mistreatment as survivors. I see churches where men are absent and the men that are there are disempowered and afriad of their wives often. I actually have more respect for women who have survived and keep thier dignity than men who frankly are cowardly and fearful. I think worthy men need women to be nurturing, graceful and understanding.

        When we get into power stuggles we lose the mutual submission and mutual edification. When I read Kathy you talk about women being mistreated and about male power, I hear a victim narrative. And then it becomes about cricicism of men (hermenoutic of suspicion) as in the comment about about the man who just wants to be one of the guys. It portays such man as weak, unable to think for himself and driven by appeasment to his peers. Not what I would think is dignifying. Again, I see such women as survivors and a need for such a guy to be nurtured, strengthened and understood for the sake of dignity etc.

        When it comes to a power stuggle – the risk is alienating men who would be on your side with what you wish to achieve. As you claim men to be in positions of power, don’t you think you would want to be winning men over rather so that such power can be used in your favour?

        Kimberly wrote about not wanting to be “as aggressive as he was”, but isn’t this what rampant feminism does? Two wrongs don’t make a right, I hope you would agree.

        If I were to read you wirting equally about such things i.e. with a balance with respect to men having been mistreated by women as much as you write about women having been opressed by men, then I would feel that you have been listening to men and I wouldn’t feel under pressure to voice things as assertively and angrily as I have. With such postings that you have made above, it is very difficult for me to see how it meets your aim of equally treatign men and women and of dignity for both genders. Again I don’t think this victim narrative about women and the assumption that men are in power and are opressors is either accurate or treating either gender with dignity.

        I hope you find that helpful.

        Adam

        Reply
        • Unfortunately, it is a fact that men are and have been in power, whether you choose to acknowledge it or not. That’s not to say that you and other men haven’t experienced oppression as well.

          What you are saying sounds a lot like, “Because I and other whites I know have been oppressed, oppression of blacks hasn’t happened. We’re all equally oppressed so black people should stop writing about how things are just from their perspective and write about how hard it’s been for both of us.” When in reality, whites had and often still have, more power than black people. My acknowledging that power imbalance doesn’t in anyway invalidate my own experiences with oppression. Does that make sense?

          Also, talking about one’s experiences with oppression, i.e, Kathy’s posts about hers and others struggles with power imbalances, does not equal a victim mentality. In fact quite the opposite, it is acknowledging the way things are, yet remaining hopeful that things can change if we all work together.

          Reply
          • Hi Tamara and thanky for your reply to my posting.

            If I have failed to be conciderate by not acknowledging the truth that men have been in power in most cases then I apologise, please forgive me. Theank you for acnowledging that men have also expereinced opression from women who are in positions of power.

            I see what you are writing about me saying that opression of blacks hasn’t happened. But, with all due respect I thing that is misrepresentative of what I have written and doing me a disservice.

            Yes, of course your expereinces with opression are not invalidated. What you say makes perfect sense about that. This is also true for mine or Kathy’s. It is good that Kathy has created an environment with the principles of equality, musutal submission, dignity etc.

            Allow me, if you will to quote from what I recall of the classic novel “Animal Farm”. If you are familiar with the book, it tells the story of an opressive farmer, that the amimals have a revolution against, and the agreement onece the opression of the famer has been overthrown that every anminal is equal. The pigs decide that they are to be the leaders because they are the most intelligent. What good would it do, afterall for the animals, for them not to be leaders as they are the most intelligent.

            The story continues with the pigs becoming opressors, the very thing that the animlas fought against with the farmer.

            I’m sorry to disagree wiht you Tamara, but I cannot accept your assertion about there not being a victim mentality within some aspects of feminism indicated, with all due respect to Kathy, about how that is expressed at times. She recognises at least the potential for such and or other perceptions (mine and yours too) including potential or actual error in perception of men (and women) in power in her book “Down we go” when she says:

            “”downward descent means that we become courageous people, willing to reckon with our prejudices and take the radical risks to practise equality”

            and that “we are lerning to fight for (and with) each other, to serve together, to give, recieve and believe in each other and to point each other towards Jesus hope and redemption”

            Marellous stuff and Amen I say!

            Yetand I will give one example of something I take issue with in the book form her being a pastor in a mega church with a visiting feamle speaker and someone saying “Isn’t that cool”. To quote her response to that,s he said she was “incredulous”.

            I, as a follower of Jesus venturing into stand up comedy am very much in the minority. Someone said to me “a Christian comeidan, cool!” and i took it as a compliment.

            Now I am sure you and Kathy would want to come back to me and say I don’t understand because I am a man in a privelidged position of power and woudn’t know what it is like for a female in the kind of church environment. OK so then do you presume to know that you or Kathy would have a harder time with thwe powers in the church than I would do with the powers in the world?

            I think it reasonable to challenge such assertions about being “incredulous” at a victim narrative. The response that I would read from such challenges are and would reveal more about the reality of this or otherwise.

            I have spoken privately with Kathy about these issues and as a result have, in the interest of there not being difficulty and for the sake of dignity for her and women such as yourself chosen for the time being not to engage further with such postings. I have exercised the freedom afforded to me here to do that.

            I trust that answers your concerns. Your perceptions and whether you choose to agree to disagree or otherwise are your choice and your freedom to have.

            Praying for you with the concerns you have raised, for strength in the Lord Jesus for you and healing from any opression you have had in your previous expereinces with men.

            Kind Regards

            Adam

  • “i think our best hope is to be brave enough to create completely new wineskins.” yes and YES. your point about being “one of the guys” is an important one, too. you are singing my heart again.

    Reply
    • thanks suzannah for sharing and reading and your words, too. these are hard conversations and there’s just no way around being perceived negatively by some but there are far more people interested in a different way that is much more reflective of the kingdom than just the same old same old with a cooler exterior.

      Reply
  • *heartpalm* Yup. It’s time. There is no longer male nor female. There are only people with strengths and loving friends surrounding them fanning their new-found freedom into flame. It took us 2,000 years to start “getting it” but we are finally there. You fill my soul, dear friend.

    Reply
    • “there are only people with strengths and loving friends surrounding them fanning their new-found freedom into flame.” loveliness!

      Reply
  • Love this. I am so grateful for the roles that the safe and amazing guys in my life have played in my healing journey. My old “wineskin” would have no room or tolerance to even let said males in. So grateful for a level playing field, to make that even possible. It is so sad that many actually miss out on what could be restorative relastionships. Hooray for modeling what is possible. 🙂

    Reply
    • yes, it’s pretty amazing, what can happen through these kinds of restorative relationships where we’re just all equal, figuring out this crazy life together. it’s all so interesting and weird and challenging and good, it seems so like God to me.

      Reply
  • The church has a history of being a slow adapter to change. Attitudes about the role of the genders is one example. Just as with several other issues that portray some people as “less than” others, attitudes that make either gender less than are eroding our culture’s level of interest in and engagement with Christianity. Now that we’ve officially decided the equality of the races, it’s past time to agree upon the equality of the sexes.

    Reply
    • that is so true, we are always so behind. it is true, i know so many women who are not part of the church who think it’s crazy, the stuff that those of us inside of it often are having to deal with it. they wonder “why in the world do you care? it’s ridiculous!” and i see their point, but i also think that’s just part of what so many of us are passionate about–reflecting another way that is contrary to the culture but closer to what Jesus meant. so much inequality built in his name is pretty nuts.

      Reply
  • Thank you for this, Kathy. It’s easy for me to blame inequality on men (like, “they have the power and they’re just trying to keep me down”) but I often underestimate the role I play when I try to “be one of the guys” in order to hang. When I act like a man to get ahead, I end up stealing the value I bring to the table as a woman.

    Reply
    • thanks, ally. yeah, that is really what i am trying to make sure i keep making clear. it’s really both of our responsibilities and doesn’t fall on one or the other. bringing our uniqueness to the table, male or female, is the idea and what it means to not hold back all the time out of fear or just the cultural norm. i also love hanging out with my friends who are guys and i am very grateful to be in a circle where i don’t feel all of this power stuff all the time related to gender. i mainly only feel it when i intersect in certain circles. now, after being in a different situation for almost 7 years now, i really notice it more than ever before when i intersect with it. power is an interesting thing….

      Reply
      • Thanks Kathy. I think this is what I love so much about how you approached the conversation here. The idea that responsibility falls on both parties came through loud and clear. So many conversations don’t include that balance, so I’m really thankful.

        I grew up in a part of the country where equality wasn’t much of a discussion and, now that I live in another part of the country, it seems like the power shift and struggle is more obvious and frustrating at times. It’s good for me because it’s asking me to work through some feelings (including anger) I have and challenging me to respond in constructive ways. I’m not totally sure what that looks like yet.

        Anyway, I’m really grateful for the way you bring up the conversation, and for inviting us to join. It’s an invitation to move in the right direction.

        Reply
  • Kathy…Thanks so much for trying to make this world a better place. We are all servants of Christ and your heart for men & women to work together in love will make a difference.
    God bless you….
    “We are called to be architects of the future, not its victims.” Richard Buckminster Fuller

    Reply
  • Thanks for highlighting the discrepancies in what can seem like a positive. I love that you advocate for “teams of equals.” Much work needs to be done to flatten organizations and structures and to intentionally create new paradigms for ministry and leadership.

    Reply
    • thanks vicki. are you going to chicago in april? that team of equals thing is so underrated. it’s so wild, how few structures reflect that when it just is so much healthier (but harder to do!).

      Reply
  • I hear you on this. I have guy friends who are all for gender equality, but still, after so many years of having their way in church leadership, don’t even realize it when they run right over me and other women in our group to have things their way. My challenge is to keep speaking up because I get tired of doing so and sometimes, just think, oh they didn’t mean it, I’ll let is slide. But it doesn’t none of us any favors.

    Reply
    • it’s so interesting, that observation and how it is this weird unspoken thing that if we’re not careful, just “happens.” it really does take both sides, too, a sensitivity and also a strength of continually staying in and practicing. sometimes i have that voice in my head that just says “shut up, kathy, goodness gracious!” and every time it comes from a place of “i just want them (whoever them might be, it’s different in different contexts) to like me.” and there’s a message that strong women aren’t that likeable. i am learning to let a lot of that go and carry on but it’s interesting how i have to push down that thing that rises up and tells me to be silent and not rock the boat. thanks for taking time to share.

      Reply
      • Kathy, Tamara,

        Allow me, if you would to share a recent expreince I have had. I had been berceived as strong by a woman. The way she engagred with that as she expressed was to say that she naturally takes with someone who is strong because the person who is strong has no needs as she put it. And she wants to appear to be strong with someone who is strong. My needs were not being met int the relationship as such, and there was conflict which was epitomised with her saying “It’s all about me” but at the saem time her saying she was wanting my approval, to be liked as you express Kathy. I engaged with that by saying that she was being egocentric wiht the focus on herself, not centreed on Christ. The conversation resulted in tears for her and a resless night’s sleep for me. And with me assuring her not to be afraid and comforting her. The reuslt – she was delighting in the Lord and in what she said was a “cvenant relationship”. Sadly, thougth she fininshed the relationship with me (it was a dating relationship) as she maturely said that she wasn’t ready for a relationship. The mutual respect was kept and we are in touch with each other form time to time to see how each other is doing. We have stronger boundaries with each other and don’t expereince the conflict we used to. Perhaps someteims it’s not about being a “good woman” or a “strong woman” but about being centred in Christ whther that means being stong or submitting at any particualr point in time? Same goes for the guys by the way!

        Reply
        • Thanks for sharing your experience, Adam. You are always so vulnerable in this space and I appreciate that.

          For me, it’s not about being strong or being good, but about being me. If God made me, than me trying to be my truest self is the practical side of being centered on Christ. God gave me strengths and I try to stand in those, and he gave me intuition and I try to listen to it.

          But above all, I do try to speak up from a place of love and in relationship. These men who I referenced, I am in regular relationship with them, love and respect them and they love and respect me and we try always to speak with kindness to one another, even when we’re angry. And it’s a two way street. They call me out on my stuff too, and I don’t get to get away with it because I’m a woman.

          Reply
          • Thank you for your encourgement Tamara.

            Yes I do let myself be vulnerable – I have to be careful about the balnce with taking risks with that and with being guarded. learning some iportant lessons about when to be wise about such things at the moment!

            I like what you have said about you being you. And the place of love and relationship. that sounds great for you wiht thr relationship that you have with the men you write of.

            I hope and pray for the lady that I wort of that she finds more of the delight that she expressed in the Lord and this flows for her over into relationships wiht others, so that she expereinces the “covenant relationship” that she talks of not being able to have with others until now.

            What was beautiful about her was that she had the maturity to recognise within her as a result of awareness that she had come to from interaction with was that there were issues and that because of those issues she wasn’t ready for a relationship. and openly dmitting to that to me. Becuase of this I am able to have a relarioinship of mutual respect with her, albeit it with boundaries that means we relate more as work colleagues than anythign closer.

            The difficulty we expereince is when we get into power stuggles rather than the mutual submission either out of an unawreness or unwillingness to accept issues and manage them healthily is is not?

            Bur oh what beauty when we know the mutual submission and mutuall edification in love embrcing our differences as men and women.

            i can’t help throwing a bit of theology in here. Forgivmen if this is not your thing. There is a theological term called “perichoisis” and if you look in any theologicl dictionary, you will see the description as “the interpenetration of Father Son and Spirit”. In case you don’t like any phallic impliacation that can be taken from that (some take strong objection to the word “interpenetration perichoisis literally mens in the Greek , I am led to believe “circle of dance”.

            Isn’t tht what Jesus prayed for, for his disciples, that they would be t one with the Father just s he was, and by implication the same being true for us with Jesus interceding on out behalf to the Father?

            Ooooo I’m all warm and fuzz nowy *smile*

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  • Super well put! I attended one of the federal military academies right out of high school and quickly discovered that as a female, you were either a slut because you slept with everybody (or maybe just one person), a bitch because you didn’t, or one of the guys. Being one of the guys was always the best option. But as it turns out, I’m not a guy. I didn’t understand any of this as an 18 year old, but even now that I can see this, it’s still hard, even as an adult to not want to be one of the guys.

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    • thanks, rachel. those two choices are so jacked up but so real. you have seen this first hand in one of the hardest environments, i think, to be really free. i really appreciate your sharing.

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