Angela Chininin Buele
How The Dream Might Have Actually Been Inception
I am naturally strong-willed, and just about anyone who knows me has the battle scars to prove it. I have a persuasive (OK, more like bossy) bent, and I almost always have the impulse to lead others when I observe a leadership void though I suspect it’s more out of pride and/or impatience than out of a desire to benefit others. I have been fired and nearly fired for my resistance to authority, and those are times that I can now look back on with gratitude for God’s sovereignty despite my arrogance. Yet I lived them in great turmoil.
I always thought feminism was about being a fighter and demonstrating some of the qualities listed above. However, a quick check of the dictionary reveals that feminism is simply the advocacy for women being treated in a manner that establishes that they are equal to men. That seems quite different to me. You see, while I’m all for people who have the same skills and do the same job getting the same pay and I’m glad women can vote, own land, attend school, etc., it seems to me that a lot of what goes on in the fight to advance women’s rights is less about putting women in equal esteem as a man and is more about putting women in a position of greater importance than men. And, quite honestly I find this to be quite ugly – from both points of view.
It’s as if, instead of women wanting to work with men to demonstrate comparable skill in a certain field without fanfare, there seems to be this common drive to specifically chip away at jobs that men have traditionally held and that have long been widely recognized as jobs done to serve and bless women by caring for them. When women aggressively pursue careers in certain fields, some even challenging any resistance to her hiring with lawsuits claiming gender discrimination, how can that be understood as anything but a claim that the woman believes she would be a more suitable candidate because she is a woman, not because she happens to be a woman? And so the lordship tide shifts instead of equalizing.
Please don’t misunderstand. Moms (single or married) that have to work as a matter of survival are working to keep family members cared for – clothed, fed, and sheltered. However, a woman who accepts a job in order to secure some sort of status (title, authority, money) in exchange for (an often significant) decrease in family involvement has made a profound statement concerning the value of her role in the home.
Then, to make matters worse, when a woman gets that coveted job that supposedly proves she is just good as a man in her field, she will probably still work like crazy to have a fashionable presentation for the office, to mother the kids and maintain the house in just-above-state-of-emergency condition, and feed the family appropriate quantities of at least most of the food groups. So, while some of these poor women spread themselves as thin as phyllo dough, they may insist they are fulfilled and have it all together. The problem is that no recipe ever calls for a single layer of phyllo dough. You either need one generously distributed crust or multiple phyllo sheets. A woman who wants to prove herself in her career and still juggle other roles in the family and social realms is fighting a losing battle because just as a single layer of phyllo betrays the filling, the lowest ranked priority –be it the husband, the kids, the house, or personal reading– will be left out.
In short, more work and more sacrifice is often required of a woman than a man as she climbs the corporate ladder, and what I don’t understand is why this is still viewed by women as appealing? As I said, more work at the office means less time with family, or in some cases, neglect to marry and/or have children in order to nurture the career. And that sacrifice for the pride of having a non-domestic role, or having others recognize you as more accomplished, or being the bread-winner (or maybe the vacation or college fund) might thrill for a moment, but it does not a loving legacy make because, though you might think you love your job, it will never love you back.
Key Question: What is freedom?
Unshakable Truth: “Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. Give her of the fruit of her hands, and let her works praise her in the gates” (Proverbs 31:30-31).
A woman’s works bring her praise when she fears the Lord.
The Real Choice: Is the work of your hands dedicated to proving you are fruitful, or is it dedicated to actually being fruitful?