the advocacy of women's rights on the basis of the equality of the sexes. (Merriam Webster)
Fear. Justification. Backtracking. Explaining. Arguing.
What is the issue? What are we so afraid of with this term?
Back story: This past weekend, I had the joyful privilege of celebrating my birthday with my dearest friends at my home for karaoke, food, and fun. The theme of a 28 year old woman's self-thrown birthday party? FEMALE ICONS! The likes of Frida Kahlo, Oprah, Shania Twain, Jennifer Gardner, Hailey Bieber, Elle Woods, and more made their appearance through the creativity of my dear girlfriends, and it was truly a care-free night of zero judgement while a lifelong friend belted "Goodbye Earl." Not only was zero judgment the standard, but I'll go as far as to say it was an expectation that everyone sing along (dancing encouraged).
I had purchased some fun "female" themed stickers for my besties, and instantly felt a slight hesitation in putting them out, as some read "feminist."
Let's review here: equality, awareness, and fair treatment. What is there to be afraid of? If you're like me, you're afraid to mention this new "F" word around fellow believers in fear of judgment or assumptions. Like a lot of things we avoid, the avoidance is rooted in fear of approval or judgment.
My mission here isn't to make everyone a passionate feminist. My mission, rather, through my experience of dealing with this word (and huge, world-wide issue), is to bring awareness to the conditions of our hearts...and our hands...(stay with me here!)
I love Bob Goff. If you've read his books, or even better, listened to his self-narrated audiobooks, you have experienced a perspective of love and life like no other. I'm so thankful for his wisdom and words, which have led my husband, Hunter, and I to adopt the term "open hands" as our Collins Family Mantra: open to receive what is for me, and open to release what is not. I've asked the Lord to help me realize when I'm not open to His plans or ways, big or small, and lately...OOF. I've been convicted to how closed off my mind can be to certain callings, thoughts, or even people. Yep. My heart can be U G L Y.
I feel like as believers, its easy to build walls of "yes" and "no," "good" or "bad" when it comes to terms like this. But do we know the truth behind what we harshly reject?
This week I challenge you to ask yourself some questions about the things that make you afraid or "shut down" mentally. Close you hands, if you will.
- Why do I feel the way I feel?
- What does the WORD say about the issue at hand?
- What is my role?
- How can I lovingly a) disagree or b) show my support?
- Should I post hateful things about this on social media? (I'll answer this one for you: NO.)
I may be naive, but...wasn't that easy? We don't have all of the answers to life's issues, but one thing we can have is open hands.