I’m Christian And I Don’t Call Myself A Feminist But I Do Believe That Men And Women Are Equal, Just As It Should Be

I’m Christian And I Don’t Call Myself A Feminist But I Do Believe That Men And Women Are Equal, Just As It Should Be

I'll say it louder for the people in the back.

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Recently there was an article published called, "I'm A Christian Girl And I'm Not A Feminist, Because God Did Not Intend For Women To Be Equals." While we are all subjected to our opinions, I have mine and I want to share it to show that just because you are a Christian, doesn't mean you can't be a feminist of some sort.

I am the type of girl that does not necessarily consider myself a feminist, but I am still all for supporting women. I think that men and women should be equal. I think men and women deserve equal opportunities, equal leadership roles, and equal pay. I do not think that men are necessarily superior to women. We are all human and we should all be treated EQUALLY.

I am a strong Christian and grew up going to church and lived in a Christian church my entire life. I love the Lord with everything I have and believe that everything in the Bible is true, but here is how I perceive the creation of women.

Yes, God created man first and then woman, and he created women out of the rib of a man. He created a woman for a man to have a companion because man could not live alone. In order to reproduce, woman had to be created.

So I'll say it again for the people in the back,

Men and women should be treated as EQUALS.

As a woman in the 21st century, I believe in working for my success and reaching my goals on my own, not because a man handed it to me. I believe that women should have equal opportunities as men.

When it comes to relationships however, I have more of a traditional perspective you could say.

I believe that men should pursue women when it comes to a romantic relationship, and I do believe that men should "wear the pants in a relationship" and be the head of the household. But, with that love in a relationship, there should be mutual respect and you should lift each other up and a man should support their woman in whatever she wants to do and the goals she is trying to reach.

Women should do the same, respect their husbands and support them in everything they do, because a relationship is a partnership.

So call it what you want, feminism or not, but I support women.

Everyone is allowed to have their own opinions, but this is mine, and I think that there are many other women out there who could agree.

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Just For Clarification, It Is Possible To Be BOTH A Christian Woman And A Feminist

A clarification of God's intention for men, women, and their value.

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I read an article recently about a young Christian woman who said that she didn't believe that God intended women to be equals. Here was the Title, "I'm A Christian Girl, And I'm Not A Feminist, Because God Did Not Intend For Women To Be Equals."

I read the article, mostly because the title was a little unsettling, and understood where she was coming from. It held a great intention and standing in Scripture coupled with a passionate affection for Jesus, which I adore. However, the language and word choice could be used to reinforce the notion that Christians and God view women as lesser than men.

And so, I wanted to clarify a few things to ensure clarity. The idea that God views women as less valuable than men is truly and wholeheartedly not true. There is so much significance, value, intention, meaning, and need for women. And men, equally are as vital, so valuable, full of meaning, and so uniformly needed. And to put both of them on a scale to weigh out our equality in significance and value almost feels... completely unnecessary and out of place. Both men and women hold an equal degree of worth as persons, as they have both been made in God's image and are heirs together of eternal life.

So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. Genesis 1: 27
There is neither Jew nor Greek, thee is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. Galatians 3:38

We cannot reproduce one without the other. We depend on each other for the very carrying on of our beings. And we depend on each other in a lot of other contexts too.

I'd like to open this up to a little bit more of a dialogue because I think there's some disconnect between how feminism and equality are understood and defined as in today's context. So just to be clear on exactly what we're talking about, here are some definitions from dictionary.com of the key terms that this topic revolves around:

The definition of equal: being the same in quantity, size, degree, or value.

The definition of equality: the state of being equal, especially in status, rights, and opportunities.

The definition of feminism: the advocacy of women's rights on the basis of the equality of the sexes.

The definition of a feminist: A person who supports feminism.

Just a quick disclaimer, people have adopted various definitions of these terms in today's culture. For my purposes, I will be referring to the definitions listed above.

So, essentially a feminist is someone who supports the state of equality in status, rights, and opportunities relative to men. Under that definition I, a Christian woman, would define myself as a feminist. In a general view, I support and encourage the state of being provided the same opportunities, rights, and status as a woman, and essentially as a human being.

With that being said, however, I also believe that men and women are different, and have been given roles within the family setting to fit those differences. Here is one passage that describes a woman's particular role in a marriage.

"Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands." Ephesians 5: 22-24

I think the word submit immediately scares us as women. It scares me a bit, to be 100% honest. But after being married and realizing that leadership is so important, and us working as a team together is hugely vital to our marriage, the roots of this message are being realized and understood further in my own life and as a wife.

The type of submission described here is not the obedience children owe to their parents. Nor is it stating that all women should submit to all men. This submission is in a specific marital context for the work of a harmonious and healthy marriage. It goes on to command the husband to love his wife as Christ loved the Church. The husband is to be a leader that loves, cherishes, listens to, and protects his wife. We have both been given a responsibility and a role to ensure that our marriage is working toward one common goal. That we are on the same page because ultimately we are on the same team.

So although men have been granted a role of leadership within a marriage, this should in no means imply that we are not equal to them. Equal in quantity, quality, degree, or value. There are millions of angles and coatings to this subject, so please forgive me for the gaps that I haven't addressed in this small fragment of writing.

I feel like there are millions of layers to how God sees us as people, too. He has created us, putting pieces of Himself of infinite worth and value into our the heart of hearts knitted in each of us, both male and female.

I hope you know that we are valuable.

You are valuable.

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5 Ways To Be A Better Feminist

No matter if you are just dipping your toes into the waters of feminism or consider yourself to be a rather seasoned activist, there are always ways to be better allies within our communities.

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As a feminist and as a woman, there is something so magical about International Women's Day and the whole month of March in general. I am so proud to be able to champion for women's rights and gender equity in my daily life and so much of my identity is wrapped up in the label of "feminist". But as I have progressed on my journey of labeling myself a feminist, I have also realized that there is always room for improvement. Many people are content in the influence that feminism has on their daily lives but if you are looking to bring more feminism into your daily life, here are five things that make me a better feminist.

1. Be an intersectional feminist

For many of you, this is an obvious and seamless facet to your definition of feminism. When I first started learning about what it truly means to be a feminist, I was surprised to see just how far I had to go on my journey of societal enlightenment.

To me, intersectional feminism means advocating for the rights of all people, not just women. Yes, women's rights are absolutely one of the forefronts of my feminism but I would be doing my community a great disservice if I failed to recognize the great need for intersectionality in modern feminism. Intersectional feminism focuses on advocating for women, people of color, the disabled community, the LGBTQ+ community, and all other marginalized identities.

When we fight, we fight for all.

2. Support local feminist/social justice organizations

Now I realize that this is easier said than done, but I'm going to give you a few ways that you totally can support your local feminists even if you think that you can't. I know in high school, I lived in a very small town and thought that I just had to keep my feminism under wraps until I moved to a city with a more liberal presence. Supporting local change can manifest in a variety of ways. If you are able to attend marches and rallies, absolutely go for it!

But if not, support your local social justice organizations even if that is just buying a sticker and putting it on your laptop. And if you truly cannot afford to support monetarily, support via social media by being an active follower. In our digital society, an active social media presence is vital.

3. Support Women Operated + Owned

Similar to the last point, if you are able to, support women/minority operated and owned whenever possible. It is extremely hard to run a business, more so if you are already at a disadvantage because you are part of a marginalized community. By purchasing goods from their businesses, you are validating their identity and existence within your community.

I truly believe that you vote with your dollar. And every time you purchase a sticker from Culture Flock or get eco-friendly goodies at the Soap Refill Station, you are directly supporting badass, women entrepreneurs in your community. Not to mention, you are supporting your local economy and getting higher quality products than buying from large corporations!

4. Attend Local Marches/Rallies/Events

Although this one isn't very original, it's SO important. I know that when I lived in a small town, marches were nonexistent. But if you are at all able, even if you do have to travel a bit, support at these marches really does make a big difference. Especially if you live in a smaller or more conservative town.

The first rally that I ever went to made it on the news! And it was a relatively small rally that reached a little over 50 people. And I have to tell you, I was terrified when I went to my first protest. I was new to the area and knew literally nobody there.

But, I did the scary thing and I met some amazing people and was immediately welcomed with open arms. Little did I know that my nerves and mild discomfort would lead to me meeting someone who I would eventually intern for and amazing friends that will last a lifetime.

5. Educate yourself

This is one aspect of feminism that never ends. As I have become more aware of the world around me, I have realized just how much more I have to learn. And while that can seem disheartening to some, I find it more humbling than anything. There is always more to learn about the history of marginalized groups, current events, and how we can be better allies and citizens. I often encounter many people who say that they aren't into politics because they are uneducated and while that is understandable, it's not an excuse.

The thing about being a feminist is that while you don't know everything, you try to make the world a better place. I noticed this a lot with lobbying. People were not at all confident and felt ill-equipped but our politicians are not experts on every issue. And when you are talking to people with adverse opinions to you, there is a good chance that you have the upper hand with just a little bit of research.

And, to quote a beautiful woman, writer, and feminist, Maya Angelou "When we know better, we do better".

No matter where you are at on your feminist journey, I applaud you. It takes such courage to stand out in what you believe regardless of if that is putting a planned parenthood sticker on your water bottle or protesting loudly on the steps of the capitol. My dear feminists, we see you, we love you, and we need you; now perhaps more than ever.

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