Monday, November 05, 2007

The Gender Divide

Today I find myself struggling with many issues, mostly ones that aren't so much unresolved as they are yet unknown to me. It's one thing to trust God, to know that He's working for me in ways I couldn't possibly see, as life has taught me much more in hindsight than it seems to teach me in real time. As per Pastor Jim's instructions yesterday, I've decided to daily commit my will to God and trust that He knows how best my life might be led, but, again, that sometimes means trusting in the unknown or unseen. For the sake of sheer clarity, I don't refer to my willingness to serve God or my trust in His authority, but, being a person who is very susceptible to stray thoughts and mental fabrications, it would certainly comfort me to know what invisible things God is doing. I know that all things have their times, but I'm presently stuck in a state of limbo where it concerns my immediate future at work. While I trust that something would replace it, should everything crumble, it's very challenging for me to not worry about it. What if I'm supposed to play a role in these coming changes? If so, does it make sense for me to sit on my hands and simply trust? Is there to be a serendipitous knock at the door or phone call that will reveal new steps to me?

All this has weighed on me over the past few days, and I've been probably leaning too heavily on Strobel's books. So I sat down a few moments ago to continue reading my Bible from where I left off a few weeks ago. For some strange reason, I decided to skip backward a few chapters in Genesis to review portions that I probably read very quickly during the wee hours. As such, I came across this passage:

Genesis 6: 4 "...when the sons of God came unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown."

I find several issues of contention in this, and I can't say how much of it is a reflection of God's will, Christ's will, or merely a sign of old times. I have long held the belief that women are the stronger gender, a point which will be rampant throughout my novels. Not only are my strongest characters all female--with the exception of God--but the strongest people I've met in life are indeed female. Now, let us emphasize the point of character. To me, a person's character is the strength of his or her will, i.e. the conviction with which one represents his or her principles. While it's true that men are generally possessed of greater physical strength, women embody the underappreciated (and much more powerful) elements of compassion, nurturing, so on and so forth, but I'd be remiss if I didn't also mention child birth.

Biblically, Eve is the first human to deceive God, but, if we are to apply gender roles to angels, Satan is the absolute first to sin. Satan is male. This is the great irony of human nature: we are widely regarded as sinners, but we were created with the freedom to sin. Angels are supposedly proponents of God's will, and that is precisely the level on which sin originates. On the odd occasion when I suggest to a Christian that God invented evil, they seem a little too eager to fire back at me as if I were suggesting God is evil. Quite the contrary: evil and sin are requisite tools for testing the faith of the free. To wrap this into a bow, I think it would be much more inherent on any judge, especially a spiritual one, to hold character above gender, which is the opposite we read in the above passage. The men, regardless of their character, for nothing is mentioned of their character but that men of renown can grow from baser seeds, and their are unilaterally referred to as the "sons of God". Women, in contrast, are portrayed as the "children of men", even though no man has ever produced a woman. God created the first woman, and if that makes her any less a daughter than Adam is a son, I am very simply going to trust in the teachings of Christ as superseding what I read in Genesis. Christ was not a bigot on any level, and I don't consider the above passage a reflection of His will.

All this hearkens back to the last time I saw my Grand-mère (French for grandmother) alive. We knew things were day-to-day with her, but at the time she was nearing or recently passing six months in the hospital. It was pancreatic cancer that ultimately claimed her physical life, and there was no question that her strength was razor thin. And yet, she spent the greater part of her conscious days praying, as much as telling me that she would continue to do so on behalf of my family and I until she expired. Now, with all due respect to every single one of us who visited her or loved her, I couldn't honestly tell you that anyone in my entourage, in spite of our comparative health, demonstrated any strength when compared to her. She was a soldier for God and a guardian to us until she could do nothing more. That is, for me, the most compelling example I can think of, but far from the only one. She was, in a time where physical strength would fade to all humans, regardless of gender, stronger than she was when her health was at its peak.

Now, I don't mean to blaspheme or stir up any cosmic dust, but I absolutely refuse to condescend to women anywhere. I'm not trying to score brownie points with the fairer sex, but I just don't see Christ reflected in the way the above passage is written. Remember, I might not be the world's greatest writer, and I certainly lack sufficient editorial experience to boast any kind of credentials, but some words are very self-explanatory, and, when they seem to disagree with my Saviour, in spite of their association with Him, I get a little argumentative. If Christ is the proverbial bridge to salvation, and I trust that He is, then I must post these thoughts so that He or someone else can enlighten, if I'm wrong. As history tells us, Christ did bury a fair bit of rules and rituals when He came to die for our sins. I trust the above, if only subtly, is one of them.

Hmm... once again, I'm strangely at peace. I recommend it.


Post a Comment

<< Home