I have always had personal struggles with religion, especially because I was raised by an independent women with strong opinions . When I eventually decided to explore a personal relationship with my God I soon realized that I would always have more questions than answers and that was ok. Growing into a feminist didn’t help my journey in anyway, I was constantly hit with words such as ‘submit’ and ‘obedience’, which in my mind meant that I had no freedom to exercise any form of mental capacity that will enable me to think for myself. I had to make a conscience decision to allow someone else to dictate my decisions, thoughts and actions.
However I have always thought very highly of the church, especially with regards to empowering women and openly advocating for issues that affect women, to my disappointment I have noticed that women in the church are still regarded as secondary to men whose needs and purposes seem to come before ours. The church still gives women labels of fifthly and unworthy of marriage when they are not a particular standard of Christian.
Especially with regards to sexual purity where the priority to remain a virgin is always emphasized to the women, and when women choose not too they always receive the worst of the persecution. I always wonder ,do these women have sex with themselves? Does marriage under Christian law not bind both male and female to keep their virtue until the day of the marriage, so why does it seem as if we forcefully seduce these men into our beds with our magic wands forcing them to act against their own free will? the very institution that is supposed to be at the forefront of protecting women, continues (as it always has) to demoralize and undermine women in the church.
It baffles me to understand how the church expects to draw people towards this magnificent God, if instead of a message of love they teach a message of shame and fear. Churches are detached from women’s everyday realities; I can only imagine the thoughts of an HIV+ woman who could possibly sit through a sermon seeking solace and acceptance only to find that the church is no different from the world. Realistically the church and many other institutions are still run by men who not only fear the women’s potential but realize that they too do not understand the fundamentals of what they preach or maybe I don’t fully understand Christianity in totality . I do however believe faith is a beautiful thing, to have a relationship with someone you’ve never met and never feel alone, is a powerful phenomenon which is beyond anything we can comprehend and we cannot allow any man to keep us from experiencing that.
May love,peace and grace be upon you.