Okay so I know that my addiction to Starbucks is only feeding into the "man," but I can't help myself. I love their bitter burnt tasting coffee and its now become a comfort to me in the mornings. Starbucks really does make my time going into work much better... Although, when Andrew and I were talking about my addiction we were commenting that in the beginning Starbucks was attempting to be the anti-man. Interesting how things change... :)
Anyway totally off point as to what I wanted to post about, the new slogan, "Stories are Gifts - Share." As women most of us have a gift of talking and sharing, but possibly not on subjects which push us further in our understanding of women, spirituality, leadership, growth, balance, and understanding. My best friend and I sat down over dinner a week or so ago and we just enjoyed each others company. We shared a lot of laughs and light hearted stories, but we also shared many deep and emotional struggles. She asked some questions of what I was working on and some of the subjects I have posted on this blog. Although, we don't always agree we have a mutual respect for the life each other leads. We have found balance in sharing stories, gifts on life, with each other. I may never fully understand what it means to walk in her shoes and visa verse but the insight we can speak into one another's life is priceless. The Gifts we can give to one another through our experiences are both comforting and challenging.
As women we understand the deepness of a shared story and truly embrace the gift it can be within our own lives. So then I wonder, why are we not sharing these gifts of knowledge to the next generation about the strength in being women? Why have the sexist and gender biases been allowed to continue from one generation to the next? Why as a young women in 2010 almost 2011 do I still find shame in being ambitious, outspoken, and dare I say a feminist? Why has the gift which was passed to me through cultural norms, Church expectations, and Christian leadership still focused on my "second" class citizenship through the church.
Beyond the church, why is the gift which has been passed to me from females within professional circles still about understanding your place and assisting the male ego? Why is the gift about defending my "bitchiness" as it pertains to assertiveness?
Women, we share so much with one another that challenge who we are, but why are we allowing other gifts to filter through into the psyche of the following generations? I want the "daughters" of this generation and the next to be able to look in the mirror and know they were chosen and created equal and perfect. To embrace that being different does not equate to less, but to celebrated uniqueness in the qualities and characteristics we as women present.
Women it is almost 2011 and I don't want to be ashamed anymore of being female. I don't want the underlying belief systems of the church that I love to whisper about "traditional" expectations of women. If we look through history we will find that "traditional" women as we have come to understand it is really a developed cultural phenomenon which is rooted in the late 1940s, 50s, and 60s. We are plagued by this unreal expectation of what it means to be good Christian women that is not biblically rooted but rather culturally rooted. Created to attempt to heal the ego of men returning home from WWII. The suburb, the white picket fence, marriage as a savior and identity, where overtly created by marketing ploys, and male dominated industries.
It is almost 2011 and I am trying to figure out what is my responsibility to be and do something different. To have candid conversations with the women around me about who we are and what our Lord has called us to be. To know we are more then housewives, mothers, career women, we don't have to find our identity in tradition or progressiveness, but a full identity in our Lord which says we are chosen for His great purpose!
What will be our story our gift to share to this next generation for this next New Year?