Christian Women and the Industry | Faith

There have been a lot of things on my mind recently.

Israel.
Academically studying the Bible [aka, let’s-bust-out-the-commentaries kinda thing].
Hospitality.
Extended prayer and God time in the morning [complete with homemade lattes].
Growing a few close friendships instead of many acquaintances.
Sculpting.
Throwing pottery on the wheel.
Practicing Sabbath.
Reading the Old Testament.
Attempting to get my finances in order.
Overcoming irrational fears.
Minimalism.

The list goes on and on. Recently, though, I’ve found myself really frustrated by what the Christian industry considers the market for “Christian women.” I recently attended the inaugural Belong Tour in Columbus, Ohio, and I was initially pretty excited about it. With big named Christian women like Jen Hatmaker, Shauna Niequiest, and Nichole Nordeman, I thought it would be fantastic.

Parts of it were good. I really loved Angela Davis – I can’t wait till she releases her AMDIO Method DVD. That woman could motivate a rock to come to life and start working out. And I thought Jen Hatmaker was hilarious to watch in the background, and she told humorous stories. But I had zero moments over the weekend where I thought, yes, this is pertinent to my life and I can take something away from this. It was all “women are strong! we can do this!” and “we can think for ourselves!” “God is love!” which is true but that is only part of His character. Why do we (as Christians in general – not just women) always talk about the fluffy, “God and Jesus are love” and never discuss the challenging writings in the Old Testament?

blogchristanwomen

Like, hello, God wipes out entire cities for disobeying Him. And there is a story in the Bible where a Levite priest marries a prostitute, who is literally raped to death by a group of men in the city, and then the priest chops her up into twelve pieces and ships one piece to each of the twelve tribes in Israel (Judges 19 if you want to read it for yourself). Why aren’t we talking about Jael, the badass woman in Judges 4 who sneaks into Sisera’s (the military commander of the king of Canaan’s army) tent while he is asleep and drives a tent peg through his skull?! Why do we spend so much time talking about Ruth and how she is so obedient and patient and listened to what everyone told her? Why not talk about Ruth from the perspective that she chose to defy the norm and remain a single woman who supported her MIL when culture would tell her to remarry and have babies? She was a rebel! What about when God revokes His promise to Eli the priest because of his sons’ sins, saying that his family line will basically die out?:

“Therefore the Lord, the God of Israel, declares: ‘I promised that members of your family would minister before me forever.’ But now the Lord declares: ‘Far be it from me! Those who honor me I will honor, but those who despise me will be disdained.  The time is coming when I will cut short your strength and the strength of your priestly house, so that no one in it will reach old age,  and you will see distress in my dwelling. Although good will be done to Israel, no one in your family line will ever reach old age.  Every one of you that I do not cut off from serving at my altar I will spare only to destroy your sight and sap your strength, and all your descendants will die in the prime of life. And what happens to your two sons, Hophni and Phinehas, will be a sign to you—they will both die on the same day.– 1 Samuel 2:30-34

Ouch. Why aren’t we wrestling with these stories?!

Yes, there is a time and a place to work through our emotions and pass the Kleenex. There have been times where that is exactly what I needed. But literally everything on the market for Christian women is this way. To be honest, I think most stuff for Christian women is designed for either new believers or women who have zero confidence in themselves. What about the mature Christian women? I have yet to find something that encourages women to break out a commentary, study the cultural and historical significance of a passage, and wrestle with it when it challenges and shakes the literal core of our faith.

How strong am I really if I can’t face something that shakes what I believe? 

I will be the first to tell you that I am probably the least “feminist” person I know and almost never find myself pushing for more women’s rights or really women specific anything. But this stereotype of the passive Christian woman who needs encouragement and self-confidence needs to be changed. I’m so over the emphasis on sitting around and just waiting for a guy to fall into our lap so we can get married. How about we live life as an awesome single woman instead and help bring the Kingdom of God by living our passions and teaching others about prayer and Scripture?

Maybe I am alone in feeling this way. But, based on the reactions I got to a similar post on Facebook, I think this is a huge desire for a lot of Christian women.

So.

What would you like to see created and developed for Christian women? What do we need to bring to the market? How can we change the culture?

I’m looking forward to hearing your thoughts!

loverae1

Advertisements

4 thoughts on “Christian Women and the Industry | Faith

  1. I totally agree! If I have to hear one more person talk about how we should all be like Ruth…Ugh. There are so many other awesome women in the Bible, why do we never hear about them?! I’m also tired of all the fluff, and all the romantic, cheesy, unrealistic Christian Fiction. I could go on and on haha. Thank you for writing this, I’m glad someone else has noticed. Hopefully things will start to change.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Totally agree! I attended Belong this weekend and wondered why all the secular music played? Yes there was also beautiful worship music but there was also lots of other ( which was “fun” not offensive but just made me go Hmmm?? The first night not one prayer was said and not one bible opened. Again lots of “fun” and positivity but not a lot of Jesus.
    Parts were Awesome and yes loved Angela Davis too!
    The Life Reimagned program offered I have found is put on by AARP NOT a Christian organization actually quite liberal and Dr. Phil is on the site. I’m sure there are tools and help there to be gleened from but what’s the source??
    Enough ranting!
    I CAN highly recommend Beth Moore teaching and conferences!!! All bible based and challenging. If you haven’t done one of her bible studies or attended one of her conferences, check her out!! She just wrote her first fiction book I haven’t read but all of her studies are so good!!
    Just had to weigh in on this.
    And yes, it was good to see that others kinda felt the same way about the lack of depth.
    Please let me know more thoughts if you like
    Thanks for your insights!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Susanne! Thanks so much for your thoughts! I’m glad I’m not alone in thinking that about the Belong Tour. I was curious about the secular music too, although I do like that they threw it in to mix it up – my church will play secular songs now and then too, though not often – although I’m not sure what the point of it really was. I didn’t even think about no prayers and no Bibles – you’re totally right! That makes me even more confused and disheartened by the weekend. I haven’t heard about Life ReImagined so I can’t speak to that. I’ll have to try Beth Moore, people keep telling me to check her out! I really like the If: Gathering ministry as well, led by Jennie Allen and Angie Smith. Generally they are a great resource. They host gatherings around the country so you could look for one in your area! The Seamless study by Angie Smith was pretty good too. Here is the link for IF: Gathering…https://ifgathering.com/

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s