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Tuesday, January 31, 2012

What Has God to Do with Gender War

A recent Facebook discussion about women's place in marriage, leadership, and religion struck me as extremely relevant to our subject, Gender War. Jesus was born into a strong patriarchal culture and yet in his three years of ministry he did wonders in setting women free without distracting people from his message of redemption. That was huge.

Women who believe the Bible must be interpreted literally sometimes struggle with accepting their own God given leadership talents. Men who insist on control miss the joy and maturity of learning from women's wisdom and special gifts. For those people I highly recommend Patricia Gundry's book, "Women Be Free--The Clear Message of Scripture". Years ago when my first book, "How to Keep the Family That Prays Together from Falling Apart" was published, I could hardly wait for my pastor to read it. He never did. His wife read my books. President Carter's brother was quoted as saying, "I never read a book written by a woman." What a shame!

In my counseling practice I have seen terrible "Christian" and "Muslim" marriages in which dominance has become abusive. I am absolutely convinced that soul mate relationship can never be achieved in a relationship where partners need to control each other. I love the advice given by long time soul mates, Evelyn and Leonard Lauder. Their advice to having a great marriage is to learn each other's rhythms and how to read them (see past post). The Lauders agreed they were hardly ever on the same emotional wave length, but they were smart in taking turns between willfulness and acquiescence.

Most of us believe that God is neither male or female. He is Spirit beyond anything we can comprehend. We use the male "he" because we have no pronoun to describe God. Hopefully, we come to know God better through a soul mate who loves and accepts us for who we are and not because of what we do or do not do. GOD IS Love!

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