The Gender Debate

The following is a response to http://www.patheos.com/blogs/tonyjones/2013/11/29/field-notes-from-the-schism/.

The gender debate is a whole lot of malarkey. Any calm, rational observer looking at a complementarian vs egalitarian will note the amount of misrepresentation.

What egalitarians say they want: men and women to be socially permitted equal opportunity.
What complementarians hear: we have to have every man share his pulpit with a woman.
What complementarians think egalitarians REALLY say: no men in the pulpits, because they are all chauvinist pigs. Women are to rule forever with an iron fist.

What complementarians say they want: different roles for men and women, to suit their differing capabilities.
What egalitarians hear: a woman cannot ever hold a job if it has been deemed suitable for only a man.
What egalitarians think complementarians REALLY say: a woman don’t need no umbrella, ’cause it don’t rain between the bedroom and the kitchen.

You see the level of prejudice each side has for the other. Each side represents the other as something they are not.

Egalitarians, complementarians have many good reasons for their beliefs. Complementarians, egalitarians have many good reasons for their beliefs. Can we all put the blowtorches and axes down now?

It’s fine for men to poke a little fun at women and it’s fine for women to poke a little fun at men. We’re human and we do these things. It’s fine for Americans to poke fun at the French and the French to poke fun at the Americans. So long as nobody loses their head, we’ll all be fine. Good-natured teasing is allowed. (But you do have to be super-careful about things on the internet. Tone of voice and facial expressions do not come across.)

Good grief. Everybody takes themselves so seriously. Chill.

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Forgiveness

Jesus says to forgive, but this doesn’t change my desire to do otherwise. I had a person in a position of authority over me make an unethical demand of me. When I balked at the idea, he demanded I comply or he would ensure I lost my job. I should have terminated the relationship right then and there, but I let myself be intimidated.

His actions were hurtful and unethical, no question about it. I knew I must forgive him for this incident and other ones as well. But, how does that happen?

Not easily. Does it help to list the ways in which I was hurt? Yes, to a degree. Right now, I can’t forgive everything he did . . . but maybe I could forgive his usurpation of authority. And, maybe, I could forgive his abuse of authority. As long as I identify but do not meditate on his sins, I am engaging in the process of forgiveness.

That’s what forgiveness is — it’s a process. A decision. An action. An attitude.

Forgiveness is difficult, but through the power of Christ, it is possible. I am no “Super Christian.” I tell you this story hoping Christ will give you hope and strength for your own trials of forgiveness. Please feel free to share your own story.

I’m screwed, I’ve been screwed, and I’m sick of it

May I have permission to have a minor meltdown right now? Please feel free to ignore this post if you don’t want to see it.

I’m sick of life screwing me over financially. We just found out our child’s birth is going to be TWO FREAKING THOUSAND DOLLARS MORE than we anticipated. We have been LOSING SEVERAL HUNDRED DOLLARS A MONTH for SEVERAL MONTHS STRAIGHT, and I am getting sick of being screwed over by life in general. Pretty soon, we are not going to even have two thousand dollars to our name, so how we are going to pay for this? I guess I get to be the cruel taskmaster and tell my wife that even though we have already put over a thousand dollars into the birthing center, we’ll just have to write that off and she gets to give birth at home with no support.

It doesn’t matter what I do, I get screwed over and lose money. At every turn, I make the best decision possible, and I lose money. Money I just don’t have to spare.

Our society’s financial system is designed in such a way that if you are poor, you are kept poor. I wish I could tell you all the ways this happens, but right now I’m so furious and frustrated about it, I don’t think I could make sense.

I’m done. Back to your regularly scheduled programming.