Good Wednesday morning to everyone! I pray all is well with you on this rainy day. Just a reminder that Lenten Service will be held tonight at 7:00 p.m. via ZOOM. See message below:
When I woke up this morning, I had women on my mind. Yes, I had women on my mind. The fact that yesterday, March 8, 2022 was International Women’s Day is reason to wake up with women on our minds. Women were celebrated all over the world identifying issues that continue to affect women even today. International Women’s Day is a day that commemorates the social, political, cultural and economic achievements of women. Unfortunately, women today are still fighting for equal rights and fair treatment.
According to Women Watch, the UN General Assembly cited two reasons for deciding to observe the celebration of women’s day: the first is to recognize the fact that securing peace and social progress and the full enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms require the active participation, equality and development of women. The second is to acknowledge the contribution of women to strengthening of international peace and security.
The day is also observed in support of taking action against gender inequality around the world. It just broke my heart when the United States withdrew from Afghanistan. One of the reasons was because the women had made tremendous gains in education, politics, health care, social services, business, etc. With the twinkling of an eye, it seemed to have all shattered. Taliban dominance and rule has had a devastating impact on the Afghan women and girls according to Human Rights Watch and the Human Rights Institute at San Jose State University. This is just one location where women are denied their rights. Taliban policies have rapidly turned many women and girls into prisoners in their homes, depriving the country of one of its most precious resources.
I believe that anyone who has an ounce of brains would agree that women are the most precious of all creation. The truth of the matter is, we can’t do without them. If that be the case, why so much fuss about unequal pay, gender inequality, etc.
It is true that women and girls have made tremendous gains, but there is still much work to be done regarding their plight. Women continue to be underrepresented in political leadership, and one in 5 women and girls between the ages of 15 and 49 report experiencing physical or sexual violence by an intimate partner within a twelve-month period (UN.org).
I am not sure why there is such disparity, but could it be that men are threatened by the fact that women may gain power and success at the male’s expense. Women have proven to be just as smart or smarter than men, so why the delay? If a job is suited for a woman and she has the gifts and intellect to do the job, why not give her the pay that goes with the job?
We should be giving God praises for Genesis 2:22-23: “Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib of the man, and He brought her to the man. The man said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called woman, for she was taken out of man.”
If we men were to reflect on who we are and how we got to where we are, we would have to give some women kudos for their guidance, love, support, encouragement, wisdom, etc. Somewhere along the line we were impacted positively by a woman, so again, what it wrong with payback? The truth of the matter is in many instances, women already have the power, they just have not yet, put it into action. We must remember that there are women in other countries who do not have a voice about anything. They are treated like second- and third-class citizens.
Most of us recall the biblical story about a prophetess and judge named Deborah. One of here judgments was to instruct Barak to summon 10,000 men and attack Jabin’s army. Barak responded to Deborah, “If you go with me, I will go; but if you do not go with me, I won’t go” (Judges 4:8) Read the rest of the story for yourself.
One of the widely quoted scriptures cited by Christians about gender equality and racism is, “There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus” (Galatians 3:28). In Christ, it doesn’t matter about our ethnic identity, our gender, or our station in life. If we are in Christ, we are one of God’s chosen people and we stand to inherit all that God has promised.
In an attempt to keep this within two pages, I simply ask that we search our hearts, do research and even see how COVID-19 has been set back for women. My brothers and sisters, what would God have us do? Well, may we start by respecting, honoring and celebrating women and girls today.
Not a sermon, just my thoughts!
Robert Earl Slade, Pastor