Her Presence Presents Possibilities
This past Sunday, August 25th, I preached at a church in Rochester NY. After Sunday service a mother brought her 4-year-old daughter over to meet me. Lily wanted to say hi because we both have long curly hair AND because she was fascinated by seeing a woman preach. Her mother shared that she plays "preacher" at home.
"Having a woman to look up to has proven to be a crucial part of girls’ development. A woman in a position of power allows girls to envision themselves in the same position and to create goals for their own success."
Once again I was reminded of how crucial it is for men, women, boys, and girls to see a woman preach Scripture in her female body from her female perspective. I am aware that my very presence becomes a constructive disruptor.
Lily wasn't the only one who was disrupted by my female presence. Inline, waiting patiently, was a young adult woman who recently moved to Rochester from Colorado. Upon inquiry, I learned she had recently graduated from the Air Force Academy and was currently in pursuit of further education. I knew then what it is she wanted to ask. "How did I navigate my journey to becoming a female pastor and preacher?" Oh, there are SO many questions behind that question.
How did you come to be Biblically okay with what you are doing? What was that journey like? How do I take that journey? How did you manage in male spaces? How have you held up under the opposition from your very own?
So many questions behind the question. I know.
There's no way, while a line stands behind her waiting to greet me, that I can answer all her questions. So I give her my card. Ask her to contact me.
We will slowly have the conversations she needs to come to an understanding of Scripture and Jesus' heart for his women. Slowly she will deconstruct and reconstruct. In the name Jesus, by his power and for his glory she will come to embrace who she is and the rightness of what she does.
"Jesus, continue to create spaces where your women can flourish and where our female presence (and skills) create new wines skins for your Church." (Matthew 9:14-17)