women leaders we apparently need to avoid

gender inequality cartoon by nakedpastor david hayward

(click on the image to see David’s art)

I want to comment on an article on Charisma Magazine’s website. It is called Six Women Leaders To Avoid written by Lee Grady. Grady has his own website, The Mordecai Project, a site for his Christian ministry devoted to healing, protecting and empowering women around the world. He calls himself an advocate for women and desires to see them set free into Christian leadership. His mission is clearly summed up in this sentence:

“… I am not giving up in my resolve to see an army of gifted, trained women who will serve as pastors, missionaries, evangelists, CEOs, government leaders and social reformers.”

I appreciate Grady’s efforts and I do hope he is contributing to the necessary change in gender roles in Christianity. I do hope that he is effective in his mission to see more women involved in leadership and teaching roles in the world and in the church. Charisma has a circulation of over 275,000, and its website probably has much more than that. So Grady’s article probably has no small influence. A lot of women will have read that article and perhaps may feel empowered by it.

But perhaps many women read the article and felt something else. I know I did. I’m not a woman, but I felt frustrated. In the article Grady lists the six women leaders to avoid. They are 1. the diva; 2. the control freak; 3. the flirt; 4. the flake; 5. the feminist; 6. the victim. Grady feels that if we are going to have women leaders, these are some of the kinds of women to avoid. These are the kinds of women that you do not want in leadership. Don’t have anything to do with these kind of women leaders. I have a few problems with the way Grady said what I think he means.

First of all, he can’t help it, but he is a male speaking from a privileged position. Men need to be careful giving advice on what kind of woman to look out for. He is a man telling Christians what kind of woman leader to avoid. It’s okay to have woman leaders, but men seem to get to decide which women will be acceptable. It’s that old fallacy that men allow women to do what men do but under certain restrictions and expectations. Our club has been dominated by men for centuries but we’re going to now allow women to join. Now these are the rules.

Secondly, even though he grants that a lot of these characteristics can be attributed to men, he uses words that are typically used to describe women, like “diva”, “flake” and “flirt”. I wonder if he wanted to use the word “bitch” but settled for “control freak” because of the magazine he was writing for. We all know that what is commonly criticized in women is often praised in men. My cartoon tries to communicate this double-standard. For example, an expensive suit on a man is first considered professional but a suit is highly sexualized in what it communicates about male attraction. A woman dressed in expensive women’s clothing is first of all considered sexually attractive and then judged on whether or not it is professional. Our sexual mores and dress codes are rich with layers of unconscious sexual fantasies and impulses. If you didn’t know that it is because it is unconscious.

Finally, the different descriptions of women are stereotypical. There are as many different types of women as there are women. They come in all shapes and sizes and personality types and demeanors and styles. Strong, assertive men would say to rejection, “If you don’t like me, I’ll go elsewhere!” Strong and assertive women also say to rejection, “If you don’t like me, I’ll go elsewhere!” I think we will see an increasing number of women excel in leadership. But the burden isn’t on women to measure up to the specific expectations of a male dominated institution but upon the institution itself to recognize that the playing field is now even and to respond accordingly and change policies.

If I were a woman, but since I am a male feminist, I wish Grady would have communicated what I hope he means. I think he means that these are the types of leaders to look out for, whether they are men or women:

By “divas” he means that the ministry is all about them. They are the star. They know how to work a crowd. And they live well with nice cars, hotels and personal assistants. Full of self-importance, when they minister they just do their part, making a grand entrance and exiting as soon as possible under the protection of their entourage.

By “control freaks” he means people who rule with an iron fist and leave wounded people in their wake. They dominate people rather than serve them. They are not team players but one-person shows. They rule with anger and are unapproachable because they are surrounded by yes-people. Their ministries experience a high turn-over rate of employees due to the harsh work conditions, unreasonable demands and long hours.

By “flirts” he means people who disregard sexual boundaries. They dress to kill, wearing immodest and expensive clothes that betray their unresolved sexual issues. Sometimes there’s vulgar undertones in their messages that are sexually charged. They also put themselves in compromising situations with members of the opposite sex and are often unaccountable. Some even get into serious sexual trouble.

By “flakes” he means people who take the gifts of the Spirit, especially prophecy, to an abusive extreme. Although they might have genuine experiences with God, they elevate themselves to a place of singular status where no one can legitimately challenge the genuineness of their revelations. They abandon scripture for the sake of revelation and end up in heresy. We can sometimes suspect these people have unresolved emotional issues, prone to depression, and therefore employ the highly charged supernatural life rather than the life of a normal human being.

By “feminists” he means sexists. These are people who have a bitter, vengeful attitude that pit men against women and even elevates their sex to a higher position rather than on equal ground. They may be gifted communicators but because of not forgiving the people of the opposite sex who hurt them in the past, they intend to punish any member of that sex who gets in their way. They might speak gender equality but they have consistently unhealthy relationships with the opposite sex.

By “victims” he means leaders who make you feel sorry for them. They are hurting and they want you to feel their pain. They are suspicious of everybody and trust no one. Their lives are full of drama and surrounded by turmoil. In fact, their negative outlook on life actually causes a lot of their suffering, but they are unwilling and even unable to see that or admit it. They suck their followers into their emotional dysfunction and create unhealthy codependencies to feed their own egos.

I’m sure this is what Grady means. But what Grady has done is targeted women in a way men are rarely targeted. All male leaders carry traces of at least one of these attributes but they are tolerated for the sake of their obvious anointing for ministry. Now that Grady has applied these same attributes to women and said they are to be avoided, what kind of woman leader is going to make the cut? What if every male leader who was controlling was banned? It would be a ministerial genocide! Grady’s article might have that very adverse effect that he didn’t intend upon women leaders. Men working for gender equality need to work extra hard to ensure their language is in keeping with their agenda. As a man it is absolutely critical to remember that we speak and write from an entitled position and are often blinded by our male privilege that we have enjoyed forever. Our perspective is hopelessly prone to being sexist because of our unconscious male drives, fantasies and paradigms that are all deeply enmeshed in our DNA. If I were Grady I would have run his article past a female feminist friend first. It might have helped his article avoid the pit we men typically fall into.

About David Hayward

David Hayward runs the blog nakedpastor as a graffiti artist on the walls of religion where he critiques religion… specifically Christianity and the church. He also runs the online community The Lasting Supper where people can help themselves discover, explore and live in spiritual freedom.

  • thirza

    dankjewel x 100. ;)

  • A Different Michelle

    Thank you so much for bringing this to our attention! I am surprised he would write something like this. I guess he somehow misses the link between singling out women leaders as particularly flawed and supporting the exclusion of women from leadership. Because the way his article is written, that’s what it does. Because apparently, if you choose a man as a leader, you won’t have to worry about any of this stuff. Right?

    So I wrote to him through one of his organizations. I hope he receives it and responds.

  • http://nakedpastor.com David Hayward

    cool michelle. thanks!

  • kathy

    By your definitions Pat Robertson meets all of these criteria with the possible exception of “victim,” although I do feel sorry for him. Not as sorry as I feel for his viewers, though.

  • Pat

    I couldn’t bear to read through all of Grady’s descriptions, but just what type of woman does he suggest for leadership, because I’ll tell you as a woman who has served in a leadership capacity, you have to be strong (which will look different for each person). and that alone will get you stereotyped as a bitch or a control freak. As a strong woman, I also feel deeply about issues and would often cry. Not cry at a drop of a hat, mind you, but more of a weeping over things I found grievous like a pastor being falsely accused of inappropriate behavior. But because I didn’t want the men around me to be uncomfortable, I learned a trick for holding my tears back lest I be pegged a drama queen.

  • A Different Michelle

    Pat,
    I couldn’t/didn’t read through them all, either. That article undermines the other work he’s doing. It reminds me of the conservative churches who work so hard against child sex trafficking, and don’t see how they contribute to it by promoting the idea that God (GOD, of all people–) created male and female to live in hierarchy, with females on bottom. By promoting that females have less value than males. Granted that sex trafficking is the extreme end of that belief, but it is the same belief, only taken to a different extent.

  • http://pickingapplesofgold.blogspot.com red

    I agree it’s a disappointing article. I mean really it’s a side issue that it’s about women, it ought to be just about anyone in Christian leadership. I can only guess maybe, that something he is trying to say is that if you’re a woman going into leadership (actually of any sort but clearly particularly so in the church) that you have to work harder to do so. Shouldn’t be this way, but sadly it still is, and to that effect all of us women in church leadership, in whatever form, have a responsibility to do so in a way that is honouring to our gender. I mean, that women in positions of leadership are representing their gender far more so than men do. We are still blazing a trail, leading the way, enabling opportunities for those that follow and so on, and to that effect we have to be so careful about how we minister and lead. The examples he gives, which are just as applicable to men, sadly are picked up more in women because we are still proving our worth.
    As a woman in church leadership I do feel this personally and I think having some humility rather than being an out and out feminist, demanding the way forward rather than achieving it on merit, makes for a far better role model to others in the church, both women and men…

  • http://sspjut.com Shawn Spjut

    I would have had more respect for the man had he made a list of ‘leaders’ – non-gender specific traits that we should avoid than for him to have targeted women. I have been in ministry for sometime and I have seen these behaviors more often in men than women. Not because I don’t think women exhibit any of the six mentioned behaviors – we do. Fact is we can be quite bitchy, immoral and down right rotten when we want or need to – it’s just that ministry is still a male dominated institution and as such there are just a lot more male ass hole to choose from than women.

  • http://nakedpastor.com David Hayward

    excellent points everyone. i think the general consensus is that had he addressed it to men and women and avoided stereotypical names for women it would have been a better article.

  • Fran

    Thank you so much for addressing head-on the paternal attitude, condescending judgment, and gender profiling that has frustrated women in the church for centuries.

  • http://nakedpastor.com David Hayward

    Thanks Fran.

  • http://abramkj.com Abram K-J

    I just remarked this to a friend on Facebook, then thought to leave it here:

    Might folks consider eschewing the nomenclature of “women leaders”/”women priests”/etc.? We don’t have “man leaders” or “man priests,” right?

    It’s maybe just semantics, but we should be talking about *female* leaders, *female* pastors, etc. Somehow “woman priest” or “woman pastor,” etc. feels to me like the person saying it doesn’t really know what to do with a *female* leader, so just puts two nouns together in a way that doesn’t really fit. Whereas men get the adjective (“male”) and noun (“leader”).

    See, gender inequity is even present in grammar/semantics/parts of speech!

    Sorry, I am a total dork, and this sounds like I’m kidding, and so now I’m even sorrier that I’m actually serious about this. But not really sorry–just sorry for the semantic silliness.

  • Anna straight

    But the burden isn’t on women to measure up to the specific expectations of a male dominated institution but upon the institution itself to recognize that the playing field is now even and to respond accordingly and change policies.

    Nice. Thank you.

  • Fran

    But, you’re absolutely right, Abram. Years ago, I read a guy posting a review of a TV show and he constantly referred to the “lady lawyers” in the show. A woman questioned him on that–”So, are you saying there are ‘real’ lawyers, and then there are ‘lady lawyers’ ? Didn’t they both have to pass the same bar exam?’

  • http://abramkj.com Abram K-J

    Fran–true! I didn’t even think about that. In other words, it’s not just an issue of “woman pastor” vs. “male pastor”… it’s that “male pastor” might just be “pastor”! (If I hear you correctly….) That’s frustrating.

  • Trevor

    Yeah, Pat Robertson is such a flirt.

  • Adam Julians

    I hear the comments made. I hear the appeal for equal opportunity for women and this to be done in an unbiased way. I also hear rampant and extreme voices in society that claim to repersent feminism which are an embarrasment to the majority of decent hard working feminists. People whose movement for equality is done in dignified and honouring ways to both women and men.

    It’s always going to be the case that the best qulified person for the position is the one deserving of it. Any resonable person would take that view. There have been attempts in the past with good intntions to use positive discrimination to have an equal number of men and women in positions of authority. this results in women feelign patronised, and in resemtment for men, when there are men that are morsuited for a position than the women who gets it. This lesson will either be learned or the consequences of it not being learned will be repeated.

    The point raised about men being the ones who detremine what qualifies someone for a position is a valid one, as it is men that are in the majortiy with making these decisions. Imperfect, as that would be, this is what is faced. So, an important way forward with this is then, that given prejucices both in those misreperesnting feminism, and in opressive forms or patriarchy exist, what is the way forward?

    Only when all are as willing to be healthily self critcal and acting with the good for all, putting aside personal prejudices will justice beserved. This is difficult to attain where all have passions and worldviews that are strongly influenced by social conditioning and personal expereinces.

    There are good and bad male leaders, there are good and bad female leaders. The UK at the moment is mouning the death of Margaret Thatcher. There are many comments being made good and bad about her in the media. But what noone can take away from her is that in a male dominated society, she became the first and only female primen minister of the country.

    Women when they are their best as leaders don’t adopt the ethos of trying to be like men. This would make them followers. Rather they value what they bring as women, and are courageous. They are comfortable in thier own skin, in what they wear, have intelligence and decision making skills. They are warm, freindly and engaging but can make hard decisons and tough calls. They are not flummoxed easily or over-react or backbite, or undermining or dishonourig to men. They are consumate professionals.

  • http://nakedpastor.com David Hayward

    You’re right Abram. Absolutely right. It is embedded in our very language.

  • http://nakedpastor.com David Hayward

    Adam. You say “Women when they are their best as leaders don’t adopt the ethos of trying to be like men”. What does a man BE like? And how is a woman if she is trying to BE LIKE a man? Are you going to accuse her of being a “follower” because she’s “like a man”? What do you mean by that? What if a man was trying to BE like a woman? You have undertones of gender stereotyping there. But I might be wrong.

  • http://lisadelay.com/blog Lisa Colón DeLay

    I’m impressed. You have a thoughtful critique and made a needed teachable moment out of Grady’s article. Bravo

  • Adam

    Great questions David, thanks for asking them. But first I will address you attempt to make out there are “undertones of stereotyping”. The is a direct assumption in that which is obvious and an implied presupposition which is less obvious in the light of what you have said above and given that in me you are addressing a male, it is someone who is in a position of privilege.

    So for clarification tell me if you will what you can say to justify wanting to make out that there has been stereotyping happen in the comment I made. And if you are unable or unwilling to do that, then why your wish to make out this has happened should be taken seriously and not as you say may be the case, that you are wrong?

    In essence I am in agreement with you with the “divas” “control freaks” etc in that in restructuring the original comments to make them gender neutral, it could apply to any gender. That then addressing an issue of equality.

    Again, I will say that you raise the valid point that there are more men than women making decisions about who fills the positions of leaders. So whatever we think about that, this is what we have to realistically engage with. I think treating such men with dignity will be more influential on them and facilitate better chances for women to have a fair crack of the whip at being leaders. I think going after men in positions of such decision making and winning the argument against them whilst at the same time treating them in an undignified manner is likely to result in a backlash form them to the detriment of women’s chances of holding positions of leadership. It might not be fair that things are like this, but the world has to be dealt with as it is and in a lot of cases fairness is not what is happening.

    As for your questions about women being like men and what it is like to “BE” a man as you put it. And then conversely what a man being like a woman would be like. These are fascinating questions, and I wouldn’t pretend to know how to go into a discussion in the short time that a comment on here allows. I think there is a lot that can be learnt about who we are as human beings with our differences and how we might come together with unity in diversity in these differences, embracing such differences where it is healthy to do so rather than using differences as excuses fro all manner of unnecessary cruelty. Seems to me there is a wide range in which an approach to bring about shalom, not peace just in the absence of conflict but in the sense of mutual edification and benefit for all could be achieved if there is he ability, the will and the actions taken to achieve that. And if lessons are learnt from history, then the mistakes of history don’t have to be repeated. Men / women Protestant / Catholic, Republican / Democrat, Conservative / Labour, Suni / Shir etc. If we get it better in one area of life where we have differences that don’t have to necessarily result in conflict, what other areas of life would it be possible. Can there ever be a time in the future where there can be a world without war for example?

    Thanks again for asking these excellent questions David. I am pretty sure if you are right about this relationship revolution and we a as human race end up doing things better as a result of such then it can have knock on affects for all manner of areas of life.

  • http://nakedpastor.com David Hayward

    Adam: I’ve removed some of your comment because you mention conversations that took place on http://thelastingsupper.com which is a private site and it was inappropriate to bring a conversation from there to here. Secondly, I’m not sure what you are trying to say. I’m not talking about a relationship revolution here but a gender revolution. Stereotyping men and women, or profiling them according to stereotypical ways of being and roles is not helpful.

  • Gary

    David…Thanks for monitoring the privacy of our comments over at The Lasting Supper. One of the great benefits of it is the safety we have there.

  • http://nakedpastor.com David Hayward

    sure thing Gary. i’m fiercely protective of the privacy promised there.

  • Adam

    OK David apologies for anything that was not respectful to the safety and privacy of TLS. The words “gender revolution” were ones used… (deleted)

    I note the request for the withdrawal of the use of the word “accuse”. Therefore I would respectfully suggest there has been a double standard in the editing done.

    This does not distract form the important issues of difference and gender as mentioned, dignified dialogue and the fascinating discovery of how we might build no ways that have worked and do things better where they have been difficulties to promote a shalom whatever those differences may be such that we may share in unity in our common humanity thriving and enabling others to thrive too in life to the fullest. History teaches us the mistakes that have happened. If we learn from history, we can learn form the mistakes that have been made. When we fail to learn form history, we are doomed to repeat the the same or similar mistakes. Gender prejudice racial prejudice, religious prejudice etc are all cruel and ugly things and a stain on humanity. Those in a position to bring about justice in this and choose not to will face the consequences of that sooner or later.

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  • http://nakedpastor.com David Hayward

    again Adam i had to delete a section of your comment because you referred to a conversation on TLS that is private and is not allowed to be mentioned here on this very public site. YOU used the words “relationship revolution” and I corrected you that I said “gender revolution”. I will not remove the word “accuse”, because you said that if a woman is “like a man” then she is a follower. That’s a false accusation.

  • Adam

    OK David I hear your choice in editing and you will have seen my apology. I note you have removed my comment about it seeming to me rightly or wrongly you have applied a double standard to that by using word which I shall not repeat here that you have used on a prior occasion on TLS.

    On to the accusation you make that a female is a follower by acting like a man is:
    1. An accusation
    2. Gender setreotyping

    First off I reject it as being an accusation. I see that as a mirror of what you are doing with the accusing you are doing and a projection of your own conduct therein.

    Secondly, if a woman is becoming like a man and contriving herself to be something she is not, then she is following, not leading. As mentioned Margaret Thatcher in the UK did things on her terms as a woman in leadership. And she was the only and first female prime minster. Debates are going on at the moment about her leadership good and bad, but none can deny the groundbreaking she did in attaining her position in a male dominated environment. This is worthy of respect. When a woman becomes like a man to gain a position in leadership, she negated the value she brings to the position as a woman. And therefore leadership is left without the needed qulities that she would have otherwise brought.

    Men and woman are not androgynous. There are some distinctions generally but not always that are common to men and the same for women. This is not gender stereotyping and it it is to the detriment of men and women to define it as gender stereotyping. A appropriate leadership will be attentive to those they oversee. A dear friend of mine has said that she knows now more than ever that she doesn’t want to be one of the guys. She wants her uniqueness as a woman to be recognised and not to have to contrive to be like a guy to be welcomed in leadership, nor should she have to!

  • http://nakedpastor.com David Hayward

    I’m trying to follow your argument Adam, but it is difficult because you keep insisting that a woman can act like a man. I have no idea what that means. No idea at all.

  • Adam

    With all due respect David, I fell that no matter how I put it that you will either not understand or try to make out what I’m saying is inappropriate in some way. From the way the conversation has gone, it seems to me that there are some common things that we are passionate about and passionate in bringing about for the good of everyone. I understand there will be differences in the way that we think things be best achieved at any point in time and that’s OK. Differences are good – different perspectives that work together ad value to life! It seems there are somethings where there are differences that no matter what we do would not work and end up in conflict about. I’m going to choose to respect the fact that there will be times like this and the freedom to be like that, taking healthy measures at such times in the interest of the shalom mentioned. In the light of that, I’m going to not give any further input rather than risk conflict. I think there have been some greeat ideas expressed in this thread. And some great possibilities that have been talked about which could, if acted on, result in things being better for both men and women, and people being served better by leadership whatever gender it happens to be that is in leadership. And I’d like to leave on a positive note :).

  • http://nakedpastor.com David Hayward

    With all due respect Adam… it’s your terminology “act like a man”. It’s no longer useful if it ever was. In fact I think it’s harmful to the discussion. It’s stereotyping. We can leave it if you want.

  • Adam

    I appreciate the respect David, at the same time what you express is your opinion that you want to make out is of there having been stereotyping happen. I would refer you to me earlier comment about that. Your last comment does kinda give validity to what I have said about you not understanding or wanting to make out that I am being inappropriate in some way doesn’t it? Seems to me there is an end to a healthy dialogue at this point in time. I hope to have future conversations that can end on a positive note with mutual respect and dignity. For now, this will be my last comment on this thread. Thanks for your input David, I always find I have things to lean from reading and engaging with what you write. All the best, I wish you well with your endeavours for justice for all in this particular important subject. Kind Regards.

  • James

    Im not really sure what you mean by women acting like men either honestly. I understand the concept, but Im just not really sure what that looks like in real life.

    My opinion on this is that just because we allow so many men to be leaders that shouldnt doesnt mean we should allow women who shouldnt too. I also believe that men are given more natural leadership ability than women. Every man is required by God to be the spiritual leader of his household. It is in our DNA from birth to do this. This doesnt mean that women shouldnt be leaders, but it does mean that there should be more male leaders. Im not really interested in having the same amount of women in leadership as men. I think the minute u start counting, youve lost. I feel threatened by feminists because I know they want everything to be equal. Its like we are headed towards affirmative action. We need to ignore gender and hire the best person for the job, and women need to understand that doing this will result in more men in leadership than women, and because of this, need to learn how to work with men in a respectful way. My church has 2 female leaders, and they are respected and appreciated. Sometimes, they would fit the “control freak” criteria, but all leaders do. The article is pretty unfair to women in its descriptions.

  • Aura Kaine

    I liked the article. I am a woman. I am a leader in certain areas in my life. I know that I’m equal to a man, especially on a spiritual level. I appreciate this article mostly because it is a man defending his stance that women should be considered equal, which is the definition of feminism. We are humans, too, just like men, and wanted to be treated as such. I think it is high time that women are appreciated for their contributions to the human race and not have to stand in the shadow of men who “allow” women to be who they are, and honor them for these contributions. By honoring women, they honor themselves. We need to submit and serve one another, not continually try to jockey for who needs to be in charge. :)

  • Caryn LeMur

    James wrote, “I also believe that men are given more natural leadership ability than women. Every man is required by God to be the spiritual leader of his household. It is in our DNA from birth to do this. ”

    May I offer that you need to first define ‘leadership’, James? If leadership means knowning when to take up the sword and cut off an ear, then Peter was an outstanding leader in the garden. After all, he was willing to lead in battle to defend the truth, even against horrific odds.

    But Jesus then healed the ear of the servant. And it is Jesus, not Peter, that is our example of a godly leader.

    When I personally look for a good leader, I look at the qualities shown in Jesus. At that moment in the garden, Jesus knew the heavenly priorities, and yielded to those priorities. Jesus was able to hear the ‘wind of the Spirit’ and to follow that changing direction. The ability to change direction, to heal, and to suffer for the sake of others are included in the ‘DNA’ of Jesus, the leader that truly matters for all time.

    Since ‘God has given us all over to disobedience, so that He might have mercy upon us all’ – I therefore offer that men and women are equally inept and disobedient leaders. It is in our DNA to fail as Christ-like leaders.

    Your thoughts? How do you define leadership?

    Much love in Christ always and unconditionally; Caryn

  • Gary

    “Every man is required by God to be the spiritual leader of his household. ”

    James, I flatly disagree with this statement. It is a sexist comment written by a (apparently) very sexist man in a time and culture where such thinking was universal. But just because Paul declared this in the context of a society that tolerated nothing else does not imply that it is relevant for today. And it most certainly does not mean that sexism is God’s preferred choice or requirement upon us.

  • A Different Michelle

    Where in scripture are men told to be any sort of leader of their household?

  • Gary

    Michelle, this theme (the headship of the husband) is fairly common in Paul’s writings showing up in several of his letters to one church or another. Paul very much supported the notion of the male dominated hierarchy. But this is directly contradictory to Jesus teaching of male/female equality. Male headship was of course nearly universal culturally. But the fundamental belief that this sexist teaching is somehow to be the universal standard for all time is both naive and very destructive in modern society where gender equality is the standard. I choose to take Paul’s words as the result of a man (not God) steeped in his culture and speaking for his time. Of course Paul was sexist…as was normal. Jesus presented a better way.

  • A Different Michelle

    I’m sorry, I should have been more specific: My question was for James…I’d like to see citation of chapter and verse where this, “Every man is required by God to be the spiritual leader of his household,” is explicitly stated/commanded.
    Thanks, though!

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  • James

    You are right, you do have to consider the bias of the writers in the Bible. It was a male dominated society, so you are going to see that bleed through. Peter, for example, was pretty blatantly sexist. However, if you go back to Genesis 3:16…..I will make your pains in childbearing very severe; with painful labor you will give birth to children. Your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you. But, I refuse to believe that this means women cannot serve in leadership. I think this verse was more for family dynamic than corporate structure. I am totally comfortable following a woman’s lead. This is very different in the home though, but the whole home system breaks down if men do not follow the command of “husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church. Our new testament writers who wrote about women not leading in the church I would agree that it was simply cultural, and should not be followed today in the way they wrote.

    Its clear to me that men are to be responsible for their households. This responsibility includes loving their wives so selflessly, that they earn the woman’s devotion. Now this next part I have no biblical proof of, I just believe it based on other things I have read in the Bible and observed. I dont think God is going to require something of someone without giving them a little help. This is why I believe that men are endowed with a little bit of natural leadership ability. This does not mean that a woman cannot learn to be a better leader than a man, but for a starting point, I believe men get a little bit of a head start. This is why I believe that there will end up being more men in leadership than women. I think if you polled 1000 men and 1000 women, you would find more men would say they want to be a leader than women. I am in no way saying that women are not capable leaders; I love female leaders and I would gladly follow them, as I do right now in my church.

  • James

    To answer the other question, how do I define leadership, I define is as the willingness to take responsibility. You are right, as leaders, men and women would be equally inept in their ability to be a Christlike leader, but what Im talking about is the initiative to carry the weight of a decision. When I say the word leadership, I am talking about the willingness more than the ability. And part of being a good leader is having the confidence and self esteem to stand in leadership, and I think in our natural state with no outside help or training, men have an advantage there.

  • Fran

    So James, you think all women would need a lot of “outside help or training” to be good leaders, but it just comes to naturally to all men? Have you met many men? I just haven’t seen that clearly-cut difference based on gender alone. I don’t see your presumed natural advantage there, unless you’re including the weight of tradition, prejudice, and lack of opportunity, which of course, has limited women for ages.

  • http://nakedpastor.com David Hayward

    James, you say “you would find more men would say they want to be a leader than women”. But why is that? I believe you are looking at it too simply. It’s almost as simple as someone saying, “There aren’t as man women leaders. They obviously are unable or don’t want to be.” Then they say, “They don’t want to be because they’re inclined to domestic chores.” If it is true that more men want to be leaders, couldn’t it be because they have a green light whereas many women see an amber light or even a red one?

  • Gary

    Well I guess we have seen that the need (or rather desire) to defend sexism is still very present in the church.

    sigh

  • Gary

    And James, you still have provided no support for the statement…

    “Every man is required by God to be the spiritual leader of his household. ”

  • http://sspjut.com Shawn Spjut

    James: If you read Genesis 3:16 in light of the gospel of Christ I think a better picture would be that what God was telling Eve was: “Look, this is the result of your rebellion. Even though you and Adam shared co-representation of Me (made in Our image, in Our likeness) before, he will no longer be able to see or know you that way or you him; and child bearing will now cause you incredible pain. And even though your husband can no longer see My glory in you and will ultimately cause you great pain, you will continue to seek him out and be drawn to him over and over again – regardless of the outcome.”

    That was post Eden>Pre-Cross. But in Christ the image of God in mankind was restored, the relationship between men and women, Jew and Greek, brought back together into One Body – Christ. So this is no longer a separation in glory between men and women, Jew or Greek. The glory of God been restored in us through Christ – our present hope of glory.

    Should husbands love their wives as Christ loves the Church – if they are truly the glory of God – yes. Should wives honor their husbands as they honor Christ – if they are truly the glory of God – yes. But love and honor have nothing to do with titles or leadership – we are simply the people of God demonstrating the law of the kingdom by loving and honoring each other as Christ loves and honors us. If we are to be known by our love and not our titles, than its not gender that demonstrates the kingdom of God – but our demonstrations of love.

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  • Naomi

    The MASSIVE error that is being made here is that every single one of you is looking at this from a worldly, my rights point of view instead of the Bible and God. The world shouts women are unequal because they can’t do such and such. Let me make this very clear, men and women are equal but God designed us to do different jobs. He did not design women to lead men, ever! All through out the Bible God placed Men as the leaders. The husband is the head and leader of his home, the leader of a church should be a man. Why? Ask God, personally I believe it’s because men are much more practically minded and less controlled by their emotions than women. Open your Bible and Read it. Instead of listening to the world’s ideal!

    I have a deep hatred for this empowering women movement, it goes against everything that God says, and it completely demoralizes men. Men are designed by God to be the strong ones, to be the leaders. Women are designed to serve, to be strong for their children with the support of their husband, women are designed to lead other women. Just open your Bible and you will see that, only on one occasion did God put a woman in charge, and that was because there were no men to be found in Israel who were of God. So unless you’re saying on God’s behalf that there are no men godly enough then you have absolutely no place whatsoever to say that women should be in leadership over men simply because the world says it makes women unequal.

    You’re in the world, don’t try to be of it too.

  • Naomi

    @Gary

    Ephesians 5:22-33

    22 Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. 23 For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. 24 Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.

    25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, 26 that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, 27 that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish. 28 So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself. 29 For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church. 30 For we are members of His body,[a] of His flesh and of His bones. 31 “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.”[b] 32 This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church. 33 Nevertheless let each one of you in particular so love his own wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.

    The bottom line is that the husband is the head, natural and spiritual leader. Rebellion against that is a huge part of so many screwed up home!

  • Adam

    Naomi, that is a genral statement you made about everyone here being wordly and in error. That is not true for every comment made here.

    Having said that, I appreciate your courage in being willing to make a stand for what, in this blog would be an upopular view to hold. I think you have raised some important points about men leading, being strong and women being stong and leading other women. And with aspects of a movement that is demoralising to men. It is important to note that this is just as dangerous as aspects of partiarcalism that is damaging to women.

    You rightly highlight the problem with the world saying that it makes women unequal to not have women in leadership over men. Equality is not dependent on roles.

    I am glad you speak here with such views Naomi and it’s important you are a woman expressing such views. To say such thigns as a man risks being falsely accused of sexism, gender stereotyping and being damaging.

    I think it important at the same time to recognise that there are women gifted with leadership and not to be legalistic about this but afford women with such gifting, every opportunity to exericise such gifting as would be afforded for a similarly gifted man, including leading men.

  • Naomi

    “You rightly highlight the problem with the world saying that it makes women unequal to not have women in leadership over men. Equality is not dependent on roles.”

    Equality is entirely dependant on roles. I’m no less equal to my husband just because I stay at home and raise our children. The world has this warped view that because I stay at home it makes me a lesser woman, or unequal to my husband. This is not so in the slightest, I am raising up the next generation. Educating them in godliness at home, while he teaches them a good work ethic, how to be godly men, and how to love their future wives.

    A real woman of God submits to her husband, a real man of God loves his wife. A real woman of God knows she is just as equal at home doing her God-given job as her husband is out working, a real man of God values the worth of his wife raising their children. A real woman is happy at home, a real man is happy working to provide for his family. This is the way that God designed family, and in the families that adhere to and obey God’s plan for families there is no divorce, no jealousy or envy, no emptiness, no feeling of guilt. Why? Because when we follow God’s plan we receive all that He has.

    The only reason any of you sit there saying women are unequal because they can’t be in leadership blah, blah, blah. You only come out with this God hating, worldly rubbish because you choose to listen to what you were taught in school (schools which hate God), and now instead of reading His Word and retraining yourselves to have the mindset of God, you choose to analyse His Word by what you have been taught. Harsh, but true.

  • Adam

    Hey Naomi,

    You are not understanding what I had written about equality in the way I intended. Either I have not communicated that clearly or you have misunderstood.

    By talking about equality in this respect, what I mean is that we as men and women are equal. A woman does not have to be a leader of men to be equal with a man. She has that equality without needing to be such a leader. Perhaps the world needs to value women more in this regard and not get hung up so much on needing to have as many female leaders to signify equality. I agree with you about your role as someone who stays at home and raises children to be equal in importance to your husband’s role with his work eithic and how to be a godly man. This is the kind of point I was making in my statment about equality!

    Perhaps women who make the kind of choice you do need to be held in higher regard for doing so by society. And this be given every bit of respect as say, a high profile bisiness woman for your (in principle) equal contribution as hers to society. We would be in a better place if we focussed in things such as this rather than an unhealthy fixation on who gets to be the leader.

  • Naomi

    Hey Adam,

    Yes you’re right I did misunderstand what you were saying, thank you for clarifying.

  • Adam Julians

    Hey Naomi – no worries, you are welcome :)

  • Gun Nordström

    A good leader, man or woman, in church, at home, in politics, in business etc., is one who wants to have no authority over the other. The good leader is a person with ability to listen, to communicate with love, with willingness to include all parts (incl. the younger) into discussions preceeding desiscions that concerns resp. community, group, family etc.

  • Caryn LeMur

    Naomi wrote, “You only come out with this God hating, worldly rubbish because you choose to listen to what you were taught in school (schools which hate God), and now instead of reading His Word and retraining yourselves to have the mindset of God, you choose to analyse His Word by what you have been taught. Harsh, but true.”

    May I ask the name of the prophet that was sought out during the reign of King Josiah? Josiah was a great male leader; and Hilkiah the high priest a great male leader; yet they sought out a female lead prophet for that nation’s insight. Strong men needed to acknowledge strong women that served God … not as just a wife, but as the most reknown prophet of Jerusalem. [II Kings 22:14]

    Isaiah’s wife was a prophetess. When the author of the Book of Isaiah used that term, the author was trying to convey that the wife was much more than just a wife. [Is 8:3]

    I noticed you did not cite Galatians, “… nor is there male or female in Christ Jesus…” [Gal 3:28]. Was there a reason you wished to not cite this verse? This verse strongly implies that a man or woman can have any spiritual gift or spiritual office within the Body of Christ. Thus, there are scriptures to support your view of roles within the home… but, there are scriptures that do not constrain roles within the invisible and spiritual church.

    I noticed that you did not cite Paul’s exhortation to the male and females of the Roman church to submit to the female deacon, “our sister Phoebe,” to ‘give her any help she may need’. Paul did not tell Phoebe to return to her godly role at home; but rather applauded her work in the church. [Romans 16:1-2] Paul did not tell her that she was deceived by her schooling….

    Therefore, there are exceptions to your filter of the Bible’s role for women. While I rejoice with you that you find peace in your path of leading-at-home, with your husband leading-at-work, we should remember that God honors and accepts ‘exceptions’ to the rule-of-thumb that you propose in both the OT and the NT.

    Much love in Christ always and unconditionally; Caryn

  • http://sspjut.com Shawn Spjut

    Caryn – that was wonderfully and graciously put. I don’t think it’s an ‘either’ ‘or’, but both. The kingdom is ‘all of life’ and it is ‘in all of us’. We demonstrate it wherever we are, doing whatever it is we are doing – be it home or business or ministry. And it is manifested in male and female, who together demonstrate the ‘totality’ of God; who is neither male nor female. Some find their greatest expression of God in home and family, others in business and leadership. Both are right, both are the kingdom.

    And yet even this really sidesteps what I believe David was trying to get across: Are woman leaders the only ones who behave badly? And of course the answer is NO! Bad leader’s are not gender specific – bad leadership is just bad leadership and should be addressed regardless of whether your ‘male’ or ‘female’ Unfortunately, when women leaders behave badly is seems to be so much more socially unacceptable than when male leaders do. Maybe it’s because our gender is so much more flamboyant about it than men are. Or maybe it’s because even 2000 years after the teachings of Paul, we still don’t believe that Jesus really did destroy the gender inequality that Eve’s deception loosed on mankind (Genesis 3;16). “Eve, the result of your deception is that Adam will no longer see or treat you as his equal and cause you pain. But darlin…you won’t be able to help yourself, cause you’ll just keep going back for more.”

    Funny that men teach that it was Eve who caused mankind’s downfall, when in reality, she acted out of deception – whereas Adam flat out rebelled. Maybe bad women leader’s begin with bad male leadership? If Adam had led differently, would Eve have still been deceived? If men treated woman as equal’s instead of as alien life forms, out to steal their jobs or their manhood’s, would they behave differently? Just a thought.

  • Adam

    Shawn – agree with what you say about it not being an either or and the kingdom about being life, the totality of God which is in all of us. I’m glad you mentioned that. We are saying similar things with regard to the equal value in principle for the woman in business as the woman that stays at home.

    Interesting with what you say about the teaching of Eve being accused of mankinds downfall. That would be taken from 1 tim 2:14 “And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner”. It is obvious that both were equally culpbable. I hear what you wish to assert about Eve acting out of deception and Adam flat our rebelling did but then that would be an overcompensation. It is neither appropriate to attribute the fall of mankind solely to Eve or dispropritionately to Adam. Both were equally deceived and equally rebellious.

    So when it comes to women leaders behaving badly with it being treated as more socially unacceptable then that would tie in with those that would adhere to the same worldview that would through false teaching blame of Eve for mankinds downfall. It is also possible that when such happens in any particular instance that the leader is overcompensating and being rightfully criticised. One of the criticisms of the late Margaret Thatcher whas that she had a queen bee syndrome. That is she wanted the cambinet to be male apart from her. Therefore with this view there was an irony. By having her as prime minister, those that argue for this view rightly or wrongly say that things were made worse for the possibility for women to be in leadership positions than it would have been if there had been a male prime minister. It is possible that they are right, and it is possible that they were wrongfully making that assertion because she was female.

    Caryn – I’m glad you mentioned the “exception” to what Naomi talks of. Just as Carol mentioned in another post that resarch has shown that men are inclined to be alpha ore leaders and women beta or nurturers but there are differences to the “norm” and “exceptions” that we both mentioned at the time. You mentioned prophetesses, and deacon there is also a teaching role with Pricilla explaining the ways of God to Apollus in Acts 18:26.

    The textual context of Gal 3:28 it is in the light of living according to faith and Christt as opposed to the Law and being a chronological descendent of Abraham. In effect, in Christ, everyone is a child of God thorugh faith, not dependent on being a Jew of Abrahamic descent. Or, put another way, there is no exclusion to being a child of God on the basis of religious origin, gender or position in society. Gal 3:28 is sometimes intepreted, as you have, to mean scripture to that “anythign a man can do a woman can do”. That is to take it out of context.

    I join in with you in rejoycing about Naomi’s choice to be at home and affirm what you say about there being “exceptions”.

  • Naomi

    Caryn,

    I have read your post and am horrified by your rebellious attitude towards men being the head. A woman can be a strong woman and submit to her husband. Myself and my mother are both very strong women but we submit to our husbands as God calls us to.

    Isaiah’s wife no matter how strong she was she would have still submitted to Isaiah, as her God-given authority and respected what he asked of her. God uses women without a doubt, and to act as though I have said He doesn’t is a gross misinterpretation of what I said. God has used many women through out history for His will and purposes, Rahab, Deborah, Mary Magdalene, Elizabeth Elliot, Corrie Ten Boom, Heidi Baker, Nancy Campbell to name but a few.

    “Just a wife?!” You listen up and you listen good rebellious woman. A wife is the MOST IMPORTANT ROLE OF A WOMEN IN THE HISTORY OF MANKIND. A wife and mother raises up the next generation. Without wives and mothers none of us would exist, Jesus would never have existed. You watch your words VERY carefully. It is rebellious women like you who are constantly making mothers feel like they should be working, in places of leadership, and neglecting their families. It is women like you who make mothers feel guilty for doing the most important job in the world.

    I suggest you get off the internet open your Bible and ask God what a woman’s role is because you sure as hell haven’t the first clue. I did not quote Galatians because it has ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with roles of leadership (as Adam already pointed out). Stop justifying your rebellion and refusal to obey God by misusing scripture to your purpose and desires. This is the last and final thing I will waste my time on your saying, the Bible is the ultimate “filter” for our lives and if you choose to ignore it then you choose to ignore God and may as well not bother opening your Bible.

    Whether you reply or not is your choice, but I won’t be reading it or wasting my time on it. I have said my piece and that is it. I don’t give time to rebellious selfish people who choose to put others down to justify their rebellion. You’re not a strong woman love, you’re a rebellious attempted bully.

  • http://nakedpastor.com David Hayward

    Naomi: did you know “naomi” means ‘Beautiful, pleasant, delightful’?

  • http://sspjut.com Shawn Spjut

    Reading through the comments, I can’t for the life of me see where Naomi got the impression that anyone has actually made a verbal attack on women who stay at home with their children, by suggesting that they are less of a leader than women who have made other choices? Fact is, if I remember correctly, this is (or was) a discussion about women leader’s behaving badly,Grady’s omission of male leadership when giving examples of leader’s we shouldn’t follow, and David’s rendition of what he though Grady should have said instead. Obviously the amount of heat this discussion has drawn would suggest that for some of us there might be a few areas of gender identity that still need healing.

    As for ‘worldly’ thinking, that is an old record that needs to be put to rest. Life is life, whether ‘in’ the church or ‘out’ of it and the quality of leadership across the board isn’t about maleness or femaleness but rather there are good leaders and there are bad leaders and lets not cloudy the issue with what sex they are. As I said before. I’ve seen bad in both – some are just more flamboyant with their badness than others. But let’s not make the mistake that one gender is better able to lead than the other, because each has it strengths and each has its weaknesses – no matter what side the pants zip up on.

  • Naomi

    Thank you David that’s very sweet of you :).

    Shawn, you can thank Caryn for that. Any person that makes the statement, “just a wife.” Needs to have it explained to them that effectively they are utterly clueless. Tough luck if you don’t like it.

  • Pat

    Naomi, you stated,

    “Let me make this very clear, men and women are equal but God designed us to do different jobs. He did not design women to lead men, ever! All through out the Bible God placed Men as the leaders. The husband is the head and leader of his home, the leader of a church should be a man. Why? Ask God, personally I believe it’s because men are much more practically minded and less controlled by their emotions than women.”

    You go on to point to scriptures to prove your point and tell others not to be of the world and that we should open the Bible and read it, however, in the above statement you yourself said, “I believe” and go on to state your PERSONAL opinion. So, just as you have read scripture and have an interpretation of it, so have others. Let’s not assume that anyone’s interpretation different from ours is a misreading of scripture or somehow a compromise to the world’s standards. I BELIEVE, there is room in the God’s kingdom for all of us and only HE will have the final say on this and many other issues.

  • http://sspjut.com Shawn Spjut

    Naomi; I’ve enjoyed both and have offended by neither.

  • http://nakedpastor.com David Hayward

    Naomi… i know this because that’s our daughter’s middle name. but i really can’t see the justification behind your response to caryn.

  • Adam

    Naomi – again, I would applaud you holding to your views in spite of then being different to others. I worte eariler “I appreciate your courage in being willing to make a stand for what, in this blog would be an upopular view to hold”.

    The comments you have received here are as I would have predicted. I think it perfectly understandable how you fell the way you do that comes across in your postings. I hear specifically the thoughtlesness in the phrase “just a wife”. Whe I ask a woman what she does and she says she is “just a housewife” I see what social conditioning had done to make someone feel less about what they do when their contribution to society is every bit as important in principle as say, a prominent business woman.

    Again, I am glad to read your vies and it important it comes form a woman as, if same views were expressed by a man, I would predict there being accusations of sexism, steroetyping, opression.

    David says he doesn’t see any justification in you expressing horror, saying Caryn has a rebellious attitude and is a rebellious woman. Yet, when someone is marginalised by society sometimes they sometimes feel they need to go to extremes in order to get their point across. Again, your view is unlikely to be popular in this blog, you have an important voice that needs to be heard.. In some respects, I envy you because I woudl love to express similar views to yours but, coming from a man I cannot do that because of the double standards in society that would treat me as sexist, opressive and would even treat me ans needing to be demonised.

    Bieing on the margins of society is never easy – the prophets were like that in scripture oftenr being rejected, stoned and withhout honour. I believe you have an important voice Naimi that society needs to hear. For me, personally you are like a breath of fresh air. Please don’t let anyone scare you or make you feel under obligation to be silent.

  • http://nakedpastor.com David Hayward

    If I might step in here on behalf of Caryn, I don’t believe when she says “just a wife” she means it pejoratively. I believe what she means is “only a wife”. No wife is only a wife. They are much more than just defined by their marital status. That’s what I believe Caryn means.

    And Adam, a woman can be sexist too you know. A woman can have misogynist views of women as well. I believe Naomi’s views of women aren’t the best, but she’s allowed to have them and live by them if she wants. And you can be sexist too if you want. I just think it’s not helpful towards women and even damaging.

  • Adam

    And right on cue there you are David. I’m laughing LOL. Sexist – really? Interesting that the “s” word hasn’t come out when Naomi expressed herself, but comes out when a man affirms her. Thank you for confrirming what I said earlier about Naomin being able to express here view without being acuused of being sexist at the time she expressed them, but it being different when a man says similar things.

    My comment was made generally, yet you took it pwersonally as referring to Caryn. You presume I was referring to Caryn personally and yuo presume to speak on Caryn’s behalf.

    At a more profound level, you are not commenting because of this being an issue of gender David. You are commenting because someone has expressed a worldview that is different to your own and has been affirmed in this. Comments made have been no more forcefully put or any les inaaporpriate than other comnents made in favour of the worldview you adhere to or the worldview you oppose. You exhibit double standards in your judgement. And in doing so you have marginalised people those that hold such views while claiming to be a champion of the marginalised. How can you see clearly to remove the speck in your brothers and sisters eye when there is a log in yours? First of all remove your double standards and then you will be able to see clearly to remove the speck in others eyes.

    The issues we talk of abuot roles are debatable. It is incumbant on those in Christ to not judege their brither or their sister on t choose the debatable issues, but choose the path of love.

    Now – go for it – I’m sure those that have the herding instinct and worship at the throne of David will come out in his support. When you do or when David affirms his position of “right” to my “wrong” then what happens is that I rejoyce! It show that me i am going something for the sake of the kingdom and my reward will be in heaven. I laugh and I belive wholeheartedly God laughs too.

    Thanks for that comment David – it has made my day!

  • Adam

    Some more things for consideration, written by WOMEN, just in case anyone else wants that have a stab at the “s” word having heards comments wrtten by a man.

    “thanks adam. i really agree with you that there is a movement that is strong right now so it can leave men in a bind … it is hard to tilt deeply rooted systems and i believe God is at work in all kinds of ways”

    “Hey Adam! I would love to sit down, face to face and have a loving conversation … Specifically, “There is a double standard in society with this in regard to men and women.” I totally agree. I also observe the double standard and grieve when men are treated poorly … My heart wants to experience a community where it is ruled by respect. Not power, not dehumanization, not ridicule, but a true honoring and respecting our humanity and loving each other because we reflect God”.

    There are .. spiritual [repercussions] … that keep us from connecting, growing, loving truly and fully, maturing in confidence, and finding personal healthy boundaries / self-ownership. There are two facets to this: false empowerment and consequences of continuing to buy into it unquestioned. … If women think about … what is true to the God who created us as … whole beings, I imagine something beautifully, magically different will happen when we finally do. And it is very much worth imagining into being. Rev Jennifer D. Crrumpton

    And of the person who has most earned my respect here apart from Naomi, Shawn who wrote:
    Adam:
    Let me just say that the deception among many abusive leaders runs so deep it takes a miracle of grace for them to recognize, let alone acknowledge, that what they are doing is in no way representative of the kingdom of God. They truly don’t see it and are, for the most part, completely blind to the reality of what it is they are doing. As a former abuser, I ask your forgiveness. I used to be one of those who abused the sheep in the name of Jesus – even thought I was the prophetic arm of the Lord.

    I make this quote of one sickness that affects society today.
    I see all this potential and I see squandering … our great war is a spiritual war, our great depression is our lives, we’ve been all raised by television to believe that one day we’d all be millionaires and movie gods and rock stars, but we won’t and we’re slowly learning that fact. and we’re very very pissed off.” ― Chuck Palahniuk, Fight Club

    And another quote:
    “I only accept and pay attention to feedback from people also in the arena. If, on the other hand, you are not helping, contributing, or wrestling with your own gremlins, I’m not at all interested in your commentary.” Brene Brown

    Just to be claer about my own position simialr to that of Brene Brown that is what I will say. I welcome views that are edifying and crituques that are constructive and helpful. I am unlikely to take seriously any comment from those who at the first sign of their worldview being challenged crawl behind the safety of their own rocks of rhetoric and derision. In the latter case you can expect to be challenged, treated with satire or ignoored.

  • http://nakedpastor.com David Hayward

    Adam: I am all for inclusion. You know that because you say I say that. But I am NOT inclusive of ideas I think are limiting and damaging to people. I would not want my wife and daughter to live in a world your mind would like to conceive, and I wouldn’t want to live in it either. You hold sexist views that are destructive. You implicitly call yourself a prophet, but you are prophesying for the wrong side, the losing side. And you are a self-fulfilling one. You predict that your views will be rejected. And they should be. You also predict that people will come to the defense of women and equality. And they should. That’s not prophecy. That’s just common sense. Your ideas about women need to change.

  • Adam

    That is what again I would expect you to write David – more fun for me. Thanks for that! I note the “s” word is consistent in your vocubulary. Needless to say i reject your accusations, I affrim Naomi and I again emplore you to take the log out of your own eye. Thank you for what you have mentioned about the prophetic with me. comeing from you that is a compliiment and a sign that I possibiliy am speaking prophetically. Awesome!

    OK I’ve had enough fun with that. Down to serious business. It puzzles me how yuo and Phyllis Mathis could come to two differnet conclusions from having simlar discussions. Oh and by the way in case you were thingknig of criticise me again for quoting Phylliss, I ask her if bothered her with me qutong her on your thread before and her answer was “not at all”. If you don’t belive me, ask Phylliss. Her views about me are:

    “You … are so gracious and tender. i wouldn’t want any of you to have to shoulder any blame for the hurt of others i think that demonizing men or dishing out retribution to certain men because of the abuses of other men is not only stupid, it’s also abusive. it just doesn’t help, and often just compounds the problem. i’m sorry that has happened to you… i sincerely appreciate your candor, adam. Thanks”. Phyills Mathis

    You, Sir are dishing out retribution for the abuses of other men. I have done nothing more than challenge your worldview as you have challenged others. By the standard that Phyllis expresses, you retribution is stupid, it is abusive, and it doesn’t help. And I agree.

    Furhtermore your comment fails to match up to the standart that you claim to aspire to. You say “I always want my critiques to be fair and done in such a way that it doesn’t prevent, damage or jeopardize my relationship with others” http://www.patheos.com/blogs/nakedpastor/2013/04/caution-christians/#comments

    I wonder how you and I can come to different viewpoints on the basis of having reflected long and hard on substantially the same world. One possibility might be that because I was brought up by parents where the father went to work and the mother stayed at home, I have views that are sexist, stereotyping and oppressive, my ability to intelligently and humorously engage has been severely compromised by an infectious malignant patriarchal virus through social conditioning. This I suspect would be the substance of your rhetoric and the caricature that you would wish to convey.

    This might be an answer, but it is not a particularly convincing one. It might appeal to die hard feminists whose unbending adherence to their worldview does not permit them to operate outside of their ideological approach. But I hope I am right in suggesting that such non-thinking dogmatists are not typical of feminism. Another answer to my question might be to repeat the same nonsense, this time applying it to you. Although in this case I suppose I would have to posit that his mind had been hijacked by some kind of feminist virus. But I have no intention of writing something so implausible. Why insult you, why insult your readers?

    The beginnings of a real answer lie in consideration of what we are in essence as men and women. Are we intrinsically the same, or are there differences? There are debates that would argue for either or both. Unless half of those involved are deluded, whatever half it applied to there could not be any other responsible way of making sense of the varied understandings of reality that have been concluded from informed and intelligent people.

  • http://nakedpastor.com David Hayward

    Adam: I am not judging you or surmising why you have views of women I consider misogynist. I am only judging your views. You could be a great guy that I could sit down and have a beer together with and talk about all kinds of things and laugh and cry and whatever. Or maybe you’re a complete jerk. I don’t know. But your views of gender are unhelpful and even harmful and I will continue to challenge those, no matter how many self-supporting quotes you bring with you. As long as you comment these sexist views on my blog I will argue against them.

  • Caryn LeMur

    All: I upgraded to IE 10, per a message from this site. However, the top shows 73 messages; the bottom shows only 45 messages… and I cannot view any other messages save in my yahoo mail. Any advice for me (it does appear others are continuing the conversation…. )
    Much love in Christ always and unconditionally; Caryn

  • Pat68

    Hi Caryn. I’ll try to help. When you look at the comment section, do you see an option under any of the comments that says, “See More”? I’m wondering if that’s maybe why it looks like you’re not seeing all of the comments–you may need to click “See More”,

    I don’t use IE, so I don’t know if your problem is related to that. I use Chrome and can view messages here and in my Yahoo Mail.

    I also wonder if it’s possible that the switch to Disqus came in the middle of this blog post so maybe that accounts for what you can’t see despite the number comments that are supposed to be here. Because now I notice that although it says there are 70 comments, I don’t see the earlier one or two that you posted about having problems posting, just this one I’m responding to. But I saw those other messages in my e-mail inbox.


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