Sunday, October 19, 2008

Girl power

At church right now we're going to a Sunday School class on the role of women in the church, throughout the Bible, etc. It's being taught from a perspective that happens to be different from the one held by our prior church (egalitarian vs. complimentarian--check out those big words I learned!) Today was the first day and it was quite interesting, and the teacher did a GREAT job, even if I didn't necessarily agree with everything. (I'd heard all the standard arguments for complimentarianism before, but never for egalitarianism. So this is good. It forces me to think and helps sharpen my own views. Not that I purport to have it figured out!)

Meanwhile I started the book Mission of Motherhood by Sally Clarkson yesterday (how timely). A slightly different perspective. :)

Kevin brought up an interesting question at dinner a couple of weeks ago (yes, we do still attEMPT to have stimulating conversations around the table, in between all the milk spilling, loud giggling, and requests for more food). He wondered how we would talk to our daughters about their futures--how do you balance the subject of career and "be all you can be" with the roles of wife and mother? And are these at odds?

I guess the initial conclusion that we came to is that we will encourage them throughout their lives to pursue their God-given passions, to use their gifts, and make the most of the time and seasons God is giving them. Maybe that will mean college, career and a family later. Maybe it'll mean marrying young (utterly and totally biased here but I highly recommend this! :) ) and not fully pursuing those things. We will esteem motherhood and the blessing that it is. And I pray they lead a life that is rich and full and filled with the joy of living out God's call, whatever that is!


Joanie said...

Whoo-hoo, EXCELLENT topics. My brain is kicking into high gear just thinking about them. And I have to go look up those words now. :)

Susan said...

Hi! I came across your blog this morning. I don't have a comment for your post, but I have a couple of questions about adoption I would love to ask you. Is there a way I can contact you? I'm a bit ignorant about internet safety. If I give you my e-mail address with spaces in between, does that keep it safe? I'll check back in these comments later to see if you've responded.

Mike and Rachel said...

You have to email me the definition of those words. I think I know what the two mean, but not necessarily which one means which. :)

I love that our brains already start turning regarding these things, even though they are barely out of diapers. I pray that my daughters will chose to be home with their kiddos, and I assume that if I do my job right, they will want that too. My mom was home for the most part and I always expected to be home for the first years at the very least.

The Fearnsides said...

You always bring up such interesting topics Brianna!

I grew up in a very egalitarian church. However, Keith and I have attended mainly complimentarian churches since being married. A lot of it, for me, has boiled down to what Scripture says (although that can be confusing as well).

Love the conversation about women and roles in general too. These are things that Keith and I are trying to figure out too. I never want my daughter to feel that she is somehow deficient because she is a wife and a mother. It is our strongest hope for all of our kids that they find contentment and joy in whatever circumstances God places them in!

Hope to hear more of your thoughts.


Brianna Heldt said...

For those who asked, here is my feeble attempt to define the terms. :) The quotes are things I lifted from the handout. :)

Complimentarians believe that "women are equal to men in their being, yet unequal to men in the roles they should fill. They should not be given positions of leadership in some settings (usually restricted to the home and church) because God has reserved those roles for men."

Egalitarianism is the belief that "because men and women are equal in their being, they should both be given leadership roles alongside one another in the home, church and society based on individual merit and calling."

Whew. That is a mouthful.

Brianna Heldt said...

Hi Susan! I would love to hear from you! My email address is Looking forward to it!

joy said...

i can't wait to hear more of your thoughts about this. kaitlyn is getting so big! she looks so different. love all the pics and your book reviews and that's so awesome what your dad is doing. we miss you!

shell said...

I am with you Brianna.
I want nothing more then for my girl (and my boys!) to love the Lord with all their hearts! Who knows what that will mean and where it will take them. It may take them to working at Mc Donalds, college, missions, Harvard, Garbage men, families, maybe even the president! But NONE of that matters if they don't know the Lord!!! I many times at night when I pray for my Anna, just pray that she will be a woman of prayer who has no cares for this world and only a heart for the Lord!
It will be fun in 15-20 years to look back and all the guesses we had of where they would go.
Thanks for always sharing your heart!

oh, and i think women can do whatever men do, but in general, god made most men to be leaders. i have no ideas which of those words i fall under. :)

graceling said...

Like the other post-ers, I agree that the most important thing for my girls is that they pursue the Lord and seek his perfect will for their lives.

It's been an interesting experience to talk through the "What do you want to be when you grow up?" question with Abigail. Now that she is in first grade, it is a question she is asked a lot- and is required to respond.

One of the things I have seen is that she always seems to change her response (although it usually involves being someone who dresses "fancy" some or most of the time:) Following this lead, I have learned to help her "decide" what she wants to be by asking her questions like "what do you love the most in the whole world?" Sometimes, she then responds that she wants to be a great Olympian like Michael Philips (yes, she says Philips, not Phelps, no matter how many times I have corrected her:) Other times, she wants to be a "teacher to help children learn how to read." And sometimes she wants to be "the girls that dance for Jesus during the church" (yes, we go to one of those churches:) And sometimes, it is "I want to be a Momma just like you, and adopt all the children in Ethiopia and love them all and give them my favorite pasta and tacos."

For me, this one has fallen into the "discover your passion" category. And I pray that her passion will be for the Lord- and whatever or wherever he leads her.


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