By; Pastor Jason Swedeen
Throughout the ages, people have fought for different rights and living in a country where freedom has been the pride has created a vast birthing place for many rights’ movements to arise. And though some have been outright destructive, most have had good intentions. But, without Jesus being the center of any movement, good intentions too quickly and easily become extreme and destructive to society. In order for most movements to gain visibility and momentum, it ends up trampling on the rights of another. There is a place for balance and only Jesus has the answer.
I want to bring to light a very close movement to us all: the women’s rights’ movement. The movement has not caused me to respect women more. It has caused me to see the ugliness of extremism. Women, despite how men in general have viewed you, you are not the underdog. God sees you as beautiful and lovely and co-equals with men. He believes in you and the potential within you. I too, share His view of you. Genesis 2:18 says, ‘And the LORD God said, "It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him."’ I love and have great respect for women. I love seeing and doing what I can to actively empower them to rise up in areas of influence and do what they are called and gifted to do. I do not want to walk alone or have one oppressing the other, but rather to walk together. After all, none of us would be here if it was not for women. Anyone, men or women, trying to oppress another are actually insecure in who they are. God did not say that He made women to be a helper as in being a slave. He said women were to be a helper that was comparable to man. Not behind him, not pushed around by him, but rather one to come alongside him as an equal partner. Our Heavenly Father promised that He would send us a Helper, the Holy Spirit, when Jesus ascended to Heaven. The Holy Spirit was to come alongside us and empower us to fulfill our God-given destiny. Women, just like men, you have been given a unique, special god-given ability to bring out the gold in people and empower them to fulfill their destiny in life. And when we empower others to fulfill their destiny, God sees to it that we are empowered to fulfill our destiny. Women, we need you. As a representative of men and society in general, please forgive us for not seeing you as the Heavenly Father sees you and created you to be.
In wrapping up this inspirational article, we do not need more laws to control people. We do not need a change in behavior, but a change and shift in our hearts. We need a shift in the way society thinks and this comes by people, including leaders, who will begin to speak the truth and make it their business to bring change into the mindsets of communities. For example, I see the war on underage drinking, physical, sexual abuse, and other issues, become more of a focus of trying to change the cultural mindsets rather than making laws. There are laws, but they in themselves do not fix the problem. How can you be a part of the solution? How can you be an example that will bring a change to the mindsets in your community? How can you empower people to be who God created them to be? Men, for those of you who are outspoken about women being as equals in life, thank you. Let your voice rise up even more. For those of you men who still may find yourself caught in culture that feels superior to women, please reconsider again. There is grace in Jesus Christ to change. Try being the one to serve women out of love and allow them to serve you out of love rather than being dominated. If you will do that, I guarantee that you will begin to possess a greater value for life. Things in life have a natural flow towards decay. It takes cultivating and maintaining in order to at least keep things in a good place, but we also ought to be seeking for that which is better, not only for our generation but for the generations still yet to come.