This post by a woman named Lisa Harris is making the rounds of social media. A dear sister posted it to my FB page and I quote it here to explain my lengthy response:
THIS HIT ME HARD.Have you ever noticed how in the scriptures men are always going up into the mountains to commune with the Lord?
Yet in the scriptures we hardly everhear of women going to the mountains.But we know why — right?Because the women were too busykeeping life going;they couldn’t abandon babies,meals,homes,fires,gardens,and a thousand responsibilities to make the climb into the mountains!I was talking to a friend the other day,saying that as modern womanI feel like I’m never “free” enoughfrom my responsibilities,never in a quiet enough spaceI want with God.Her response floored me,“That is why God comes to women. Men have to climb the mountain to meet God, but God comes to women where ever they are.”I have been pondering on her words for weeks and have searched my scripturesto see that what she said is true.God does in deed come to womenwhere they are,when they are doing their ordinary,everyday work.He meets them at the wellswhere they draw water for their families,in their homes,in their kitchens,in their gardens.He comes to themas they sit beside sickbeds,as they give birth,care for the elderly,and perform necessary mourning and burial rites.Even at the empty tomb,Mary was the first to witness Christ’s resurrection,She was there because she was doing the womanly chore of properly preparing Christ’s body for burial.In these seemingly mundaneand ordinary tasks,these women of the scriptures found themselves face to face with divinity.So if — like me — you ever start to bemoan the fact that you don’t have as much time to spend in the mountains with God as you would like.Remember, God comes to women. He knows where we are and the burdens we carry. He sees us, and if we open our eyes and our hearts we will see Him, even in the most ordinary places and in the most ordinary things.He lives. And he’s using a time such as this to speak to women around the world.
Been thinking about this and a couple comments. First, God comes to women and men both in the middle of the mundane responsibilities of their lives. He called the Twelve when they were working. He appeared to Peter and the others as they were fishing. He spoke to Moses while he was shepherding. Truthfully, I don’t think one can make any claim that God comes to men while they’re off doing their own thing but women while they’re bearing the weight of the world. To say so sounds sort of like humble-bragging.
What is true is that Moses and Jesus went off into the wilderness for a time of concentrated fasting and prayer. Likely the Apostle Paul, also. There are other similar seasons among the prophets—all male, and not female.
But it is such a rare thing that I would not want to make a worldview distinction with this as its basis, partly because Moses, some prophets, Jesus, the Apostle Paul are God’s prophets and shepherds of His people, and He always shepherds His people through men. Women are the one-in-a-thousand exception to the rule.
This is the meaning of male being created first, then female. Leadership and responsibility flow from the male of the species bearing His Father Image, as He decreed and created them to do.
There have always been women who resent this and complain that they are put upon to have to bear the weight of the world while men (say, for instance) get to go off and talk to one another, acting like they’re doing “something.” Or get to go off and talk to God. These women are well-represented by Ibsen’s play, A Doll’s House, and Virginia Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own. Woolf does, in fact, come close to saying what the above post says, but not concerning God speaking to woman. Not at all.
Really, the question for Christian women is whether you will content yourselves and grow in your love for the sex God made you, recognizing that the high privilege of your sex is childbearing. You were lovingly named in Genesis “life-giver,” and in what universe is this inferior or demeaning to the one gifted by God this way Who Himself decreed you would be woman—not man—at the moment of your conception?
Comparisons are odious, particularly when they are used to make out woman as good and man as bad (which is everywhere today). From the time of the Fall, both man and woman have been corrupted by Adam’s evil (not Eve’s) called “Original Sin.” There’s more than enough evil to go around concerning each sex.
What we all need to focus on is why the Resurrection gives us such great hope?
It is because we have so much evil which rightly condemns us to death now and eternally. But hallelujah, our Lord lived sinless, as a man, died, was buried, and now is resurrected so that we who put our sins on Him, by faith, are also raised from the dead and seated with Him in the Heavenly places.
Keep in mind that we are not saved as “persons.” We are saved as men or women, and we must observe and learn to love the weaknesses and strengths, the indignities and dignities, the prohibitions and duties that God has assigned to each of our sexes.
And yes, I know some would say this is all that the above post is saying, but I think not. This is why it took me some time to respond to it. I felt uneasy with the underlying possibility of it encouraging resentment among wives, sisters, and mothers.
Finally, reading the original post, I found myself thinking about the Apostle Paul’s statement of promise:
But women will be preserved through the bearing of children if they continue in faith and love and sanctity with self-restraint. (1Timothy 2:15).
In such discussions about the burden women bear, always keep this promise in mind. Who would want to despise the very duties Scripture promises that God uses to save our souls?
If you find the text confusing, listen to John Calvin’s explanation:
To censorious men it might appear absurd, for an Apostle of Christ not only to exhort women to give attention to the birth of offspring, but to press this work as religious and holy to such an extent as to represent it in the light of the means of procuring salvation. Nay, we even see with what reproaches the conjugal bed has been slandered by hypocrites, who wished to be thought more holy than all other men. But there is no difficulty in replying to these sneers of the ungodly.
First, here the Apostle does not speak merely about having children, but about enduring all the distresses, which are manifold and severe, both in the birth and in the rearing of children.
Secondly, whatever hypocrites or wise men of the world may think of it, when a woman, considering to what she has been called, submits to the condition which God has assigned to her, and does not refuse to endure the pains, or rather the fearful anguish, of parturition, or anxiety about her offspring, or anything else that belongs to her duty, God values this obedience more highly than if, in some other manner, she made a great display of heroic virtues, while she refused to obey the calling of God.
…Even “child-bearing” is obedience acceptable to God, only so far as it proceeds from faith and love.
May God bless us and our children with godly women who love their life-giving nature in all its torments and blessings, who will give themselves to this femininity as their husbands give themselves to the masculinity of their leadership and authority in all its torments and blessings, also. By faith.