I am not doing enough

woman silhouetteThe pictures haunt my dreams. The stories tear at my heart.

Acid attacks in India. Sexual violence in Syria. Human trafficking in Nicaragua…

…not to mention the nightly local news.

Beauty robbed. Life scarred forever. Families anguished.

Pain. Hatred. Fear. Injustice. Shame. Evil.

Report after report of misogyny, disrespect, violation, and cruelty. Attacked because of a commitment to go to school or a refusal to marry at puberty. Coerced because of lust and greed. Abused by strangers, lovers, family members.

I cannot comprehend these things. They shake me to the core. They disrupt my thoughts; they upset my stomach; they burden my heart.

“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil
is for good men to do nothing.”

credited to Edmund Burke

What can I do? What do you do?

I live in comfort and safety, surrounded by love. I have freedom, choices, protection. My everyday life is not threatened as are the lives of so many women.

I have education, influence, money, discretionary time…

I have responsibility. I have hope.

I know I can pray more. I am asking God to show me what else I can do…

What injustice are you passionate about changing? What are you doing?

(**If you have helpful information, sites, or organizations that you help, please leave the links in your comment, so we can learn from each other!)

moving towards advocacy

This past semester I learned a lot about cross-cultural leadership, and I gained greater appreciation for the benefit and blessing of diversity in ministry and teams. Our experience in Mexico has confirmed that multi-“cultural” teams (culture = age, gender, nationality, stage-of-life, experience, etc) are the most fruitful, both in terms of ministry goals and for personal character and emotional/spiritual growth.

I believe that the prayer needed, grace extended, and ego submission necessary for unity greatly outweighs the misunderstandings and time challenges involved in these “mixed” teams.  I believe that God blesses our efforts to overcome “cultural” barriers and work together for His glory.

This is especially true in the gender area – maybe because unity in this area is such a personal challenge, especially for families and husbands and wives. My professor encouraged me to further study the many issues surrounding women in leadership… and, although I was hesitant at first, I learned a lot. I am grateful for his “push”.  I do not want to enter a theological or cultural “battleground”, but I do want to actively pursue willingness to hear from God in this area.

I am convinced that our perspective and treatment of women has huge ramifications for our personal relationships, our fruitfulness as a ministry, and our participation in the battle against violence and human trafficking.  The chart below is a summary of some of my study. I offer it as a resource for prayerful consideration of your personal or organizational view of women.

Please let me know what you think. I have the sense that I am just scratching the surface of all that God would have me learn and do in this area. I’d love to learn from you also.

Moving Towards Advocacy-2What does God say to you as you review this chart?

What steps can you take to move towards advocacy?