Women’s Work

I had a few letters printed in our local newspaper during the past few weeks regarding women’s equality. 

Well, to be honest, I was comparing the attitude about women in Baptist churches to the attitude that Afghan women live with on a daily basis.  Please see my post “Why we can’t win the war in Afghanistan.”

One 80 something year old man really showed his ignorance about equality.  This is what he said.

“The issue being debated is generally a settled issue in our society. Surely, one can accept the concept that there will always be exceptions, there will always be different opinions. But, I would suggest that in today’s time, we are faced with internal and global problems that far outweigh this one issue as the man vs. woman thing has been with us since Adam & Eve.

My wife and I will be married 61 years come Sept 13. We made a blood agreement many years ago, that I would go out and kill the lions and tigers, she would do her thing, have kids and take care of the home.”

Being married 61 years means that they have not had children in the home for many years, and it also means that it is been quite a few years since he has killed any lions and tigers. 

So, does the Missus still make his sandwich?  At age 80+, it probably takes both of them to even complete a sentence, much less clean a house and cook.

Does this man realize how silly he is?  Now that he is an old man, it won’t be long before his wife is having to really take care of him.  What is it called when you shave the face of your ill husband?  I guess a women is taking over his authority when he can no longer do the task himself. Or he may have to take care of her, and really do women’s work.  The lions and tigers are dead, and he and his wife still need to be cared for and fed.

Many women and many men work in job role reversal.  Man have always cooked.  Women have always worked hard to provide shelter and food their family.

Just what is women’s work? I was dusting the dresser and could not reach the top, so I handed Don the Pledge cloth and asked him to run it over the top part.  He grinned and asked, “Is this women’s work?”  I told him that it is man’s work if he can reach it, but if I can reach it, then it is women’s work.”   Swallowing a camel and straining a gnat. 

I bring this up because of another reply to my letters.  This woman said “The feminazi movement has pushed to the point of being effective only in the creation of chaos. We have created a nation where more and more children and adults are confused about who they are, what is expected of them and what being healthy productive members in society is about.”

She also said that “the Bible lays out roles for each based on the fallen sinful natures we have. Women want to jump in and make decisions, take charge and men let us.” She went on to say that “men who push or give up their leadership responsibilities in the church off on women are self-centered, not God-centered.”

Does this lady mean that a woman has to clean house because of her fallen nature, and a man gets to preach because of his fallen nature?

(You can see what was printed to Letters to the Editors to the Baptist Standard, the Houston Chronicle, and four to my local newspaper.  They will be posted to www.FreeCWC.com soon.

Again, what did you do this week to further women’s equality?  Did you set up a meeting with your denominational leaders, pastor, or did you write to a secular newspaper to shine the light on the problem? 

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About bwebaptistwomenforequality

Shirley Taylor writes with humor and common sense, challenging the church body to reclaim equality for Christian women.
This entry was posted in Do Baptists Really Believe That?, Equality for women in Southern Baptist churches and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

17 Responses to Women’s Work

  1. Paula says:

    What I do is keep telling the churchians that denominations, clubs, businesses are worldly constructs, not the Body of Christ. I tell them to “come out of her” and be free. I tell them to take Jesus out of the tiny box they’ve been keeping Him in and let Him walk with them every day. I tell them that the Holy Spirit is their “covering”, the Bible is their “study guide”, and the only true fellowship is with people they come to know and interact with in the daily course of life, not visit weekly.

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    • Thanks, Paula. We add our voices together. We are not all called to do the same thing, but I truly believe we all must do some thing. I have been reading about the beginning of the SBC and their positions on slavery, Jim Crow laws, segregation, woman’s sufferage, and see that they were on the wrong side of all these social sins. Who was speaking up for the blacks, or for women?

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      • Paula says:

        Yes, the SBC has a way of conveniently forgetting the past at times. They also ignore the fact that Lottie Moon for example was an egalitarian, that Sarah Palin does “manly” things, and that sexual perversion is more prevalent among patriarchal societies than others.

        But they would have no power or influence without The Institution, the structure of hierarchy that exists even in the smallest congregations. That’s why my focus is on not only women’s issues but also the very nature of the Body of Christ. There will always be rifts in that Body because such rifts are sanctified as divinely ordained. But if we attack this foundation then the objections to women in leadership (church or home) will evaporate.

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  2. Lydia says:

    It is amazing how the responses are based upon works. Their works based beliefs are really based more upon a notion of society that is either Victorian or Ozzie and Harriet.

    Women have always worked. Poor women have always carried a very hard load. Some women had babies in the back of wagons crossing the prairie and worked to plant and harvest crops. Some had babies while picking cotton in the fields. Some worked in factories while living in city slums.

    There is something really cynical about the view of roles and what is women’s work. This was not a threat until secular society decided women should be paid equal to men. Then it became a sinful feminist position. There were many of the same reactions to women voting! Some women were against women voting!

    What we should pay attention to is how successful this notion of the evil feminist has become. The propaganda worked. They successfully tied the bra burners to any woman who dares disagree with their notion of “roles”.

    the problem is, when I ask them to give me specific non biological roles in the NC that are for all time, they try very hard to stay general and never get specific. All they say is that there are roles. Well, what are they? Because if they get specific, do you realize those women working in the factories to help feed their family were in sin?

    Their notion of specific roles only work if there is no tragedy, no sickness, no accidents and the family is middle class. So, perhaps their notion of roles has more to do with the wealth and health Gospel.

    BTW: Note in Luke 8 that Joanna was certainly not in her ‘role” while she left her husband and was following Jesus around even supporting Him.

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  3. Personally, I wrote recently about how they never address the concerns we bring up. They divert with their parroting what they have been taught.

    Good “leadership” should be able to back their opinions/views up with substance. They never think that far ahead I guess, because I haven’t seen the substance yet. Parroting doctrine, Fear Mongering, and shame based lectures doesn’t prove squat. It just shows their points aren’t as strong as they claim.

    They are good at diverting, but true substance of their message? I have yet to see it.

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    • Thank you so much for posting that. You are absolutely right about the Divert! Thank you for not letting this die.

      I do want to point out that in my letter as you printed it, it has some words that shouldn’t be in there. In the second paragraph it says Texas Baptist Forum and that shouldn’t be there.

      I had a supporter email me and said she saw this on the Baptist Forum and she couldn’t believe that I called men pigs. I told her that I didn’t. I never use that kind of language in writing or speaking. (well, I do like the word Equal-buts, and might call them that sometimes).

      I will send her her a link to your post so she can read it. She really is a great supporter.

      Thanks for your good words and your comments on my posts. It is deeply appreciated.

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  4. territippins says:

    I would like to know who invented the word *feminazi*. I have been visiting some home making sites and all I see is pretty flowers, little girls dressed like Laura on ‘Little House on the Prarie’ and victorian fluff. One woman said this was what her husband wanted: ‘A kitty cat in the parlor/living room, a magician in the kitchen, and a tiger in the bedroom,’ that was his expectations of a wife. Quiet when company is around. Create wonderful, tasty creations like a professional chef. And have no inhibitions in the bedroom. The bedroom was the only place where a woman is given a blank check (in sexual expression), how convenient for men!

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    • Rush Limbaugh invented the word feminazi.

      As to the rest, have you read the book Quiverfull? Some of these women even ask their husbands what clothes to wear. I have a husband and 2 sons, and I can guarantee you that they do not want to have to make a decision as to what a woman wears. Talk about feminization of the men! If tis doesn’t feminize them, I don’t know what does. Actually what I told the group at the conferende in Orlando was that I wrote to Dr. James Merritt and told him that they want the women to be Stepford wives. Bake cookies, be beautiful, be sexy, and not know anything.

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  5. territippins says:

    I have also tried to submit articles to local papers but, they will not print them. As a matter of fact I could not get my articles back. How do you deal with these sort of issues?

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    • The article I had printed in the Houston Chronicle was in response to their story “Two Cups of Tea.” That is one way. To respond to one of their articles, and bring it around to the woman’s equality isssue. I created the need for the other articles by a catchy headline “Why we can’t win the war in Afghanistan” and then explained that people in the US believe about women in a patriachial way the same way they do.

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      • territippins says:

        I replied to an article that was helping women of DV to find help in thier local communities. I think what really doomed my piece was that I linked DV/abuse to not just alcoholics but also stating that the second indication of DV was a very religious (fundamentalist) husband………I believe they frowned on that and set it aside, even though I showed where the information came from. Our little community has a church on every corner, and like most wants to believe that so-called christian men would never abuse thier wives. When you give them statistics/proof they choose to ignore it then bury it.

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      • It is possible that one of the people who is screening the letters to the editor is fundamentalist. That will make it much harder. Let me give this some thought.

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    • You might also sign up with American Towns. It is free. You can post any news item you want to, and if they approve it, then it goes up. The following is a link where you can see me signed up as bWe Baptist Women for Equality, and also the Demand for an Apology on it. Lots of churches love this because it is free. I don’t know how many actually go in and look at it later after they have signed up. Not a whole lot, but I am hoping that every little bit counts. If all our viewers would sign up for their home town and post something it would help. They are located in almost all cities. Just type in http://www.americantowns and choose your state and then city. http://www.americantowns.com/tx/conroe

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      • territippins says:

        I am going to add this to my facebook page. I have never heard of this site before. If you have anymore great ideas just bring em on! Thanks Sis. Shirley!

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  6. territippins says:

    Why we can’t win the war in Afghanistan” and then explained that people in the US believe about women in a patriachial way the same way they do.

    It is just amazing to me that people cannot see the comparison between the way Muslims treat women and the way Evangelical Patriarchs/Comps want women to be treated. This is the one issue where most religions meet and agree (subjection of women) even Christianity. They all teach the domination of women, it is just the degree of subjection that differs. Some treat women better some treat them worse. The scope is only limited by men’s imaginations and what they deem appropriate. And that not only changes from church to church but, from husband to husband.

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  7. Lydia says:

    Feminazi’s are women who want special affirmative action because they are women and not because they happen to be competent. That is exactly what our Patriarchal male peers do. They want special treatment because they are men.

    Why would we want to act like them?

    I do not want special treatment or even affirmative action where token women are hired because they are female and a quota has to be filled. That is Hillary Clinton style feminists. She got her position THROUGH her husband!

    I want the Margaret Thatcher kind. The kind that is earned from competence and hard work coming up through the ranks.

    I do not want a woman president. I want a competent president who believes in less government in my life. If that person happens to be female then that is great. If not, the ok, too.

    This might not be popular on this blog but we cannot demand equality then insist on women being given responsiblity they are not equipped for or for being expected to vote for a woman if we totally disagree with her positions.

    In the Body of Christ, we had best be seeking the Holy Spirit and developing the spiritual gifts
    He bestows in us. And we exercise those in our day to day walk no matter what any human has to say about it. We answer to Him. Alone.

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    • Mara says:

      Lydia, I have no problem with this.

      I heard Rush define the term, once. He didn’t mean women who were interested in equal rights with men, or strong women in leadership. He meant women who hated men, thought fathers were expendable (sperm donors, only), and want as many abortions as possible, looking upon abortion as something sacred that somehow liberates women, the reason he incorperated ‘nazi’ in the term.

      People who use it now to describe what Shirley and all are doing do not understand the original reason the word was coined. They aren’t using it right. They show their utter and unreasonable ignorance by using it against the women here as a fearmongering tactic.

      Don’t let the word trip you up. It’s misapplied and should roll off you like water off a duck’s back because it has no sticking power over you.
      What it means is not what you are.

      And yes, there ARE women out there so angry that they DO hate men, fatherhood, pregnancy etc with a ridiculous hatred. We need to reach those women with the true gospel. Jesus died just as much for those women as for anyone else. Those women are not less deserving of God’s love because people come up with nasty names to call them, like feminazi.

      Often the male-ruled church looks at these women as throw-away women, not worthy of salvation. But men base this view on how they value women and on what they think women are for.

      Are these women (feminazis) willing to serve men?
      No?
      Well, since these women refuse to serve men… drive the jezebels out. They are not worthy to know Christ…
      (at least according to the misguided individuals who think they speak for God when they soooo don’t.)

      The false gospel of male-rule will never reach these wounded and broken women.
      That’s why we work to present a gospel more in keeping with the heart of Christ, one that doesn’t call women to a lower place than men. One that doesn’t give women value based on their willingness to serve men.

      Anyway, my $.02.

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