We have a chocolate Labrador wannabe named Sugar. Sugar used to frequently go AWOL to terrorize the local cat population. Our yard is fenced, and we have an automatic gate. Sugar used to lie in wait for a car to open the gate and would make her dash for freedom as the gate was within inches of closing.
We decided to put a stop to this behavior and installed an invisible fence across the gate. Sugar is not normally known as a fast learner, but after a couple of, shall we say, shocking experiences, she learned not to cross the invisible line. In fact, she would sit gazing longingly out of an open gate long after the battery in her collar had died.
Today, at least within the simple church movement, there are no theological barriers to women moving into their destiny in the Kingdom of God. But comparatively few are taking this privilege seriously. Why? Because, like Sugar, we have become accustomed to our lack of freedom. We are content to sit on the sidelines, even as we gaze longingly at what other women are doing around the world. We wait for a man to follow, rather than daring to step out to follow the Lord. We need the Lord to help us break out of our inertia so that we can move into our calling as women of the Kingdom.
There are women who function apostolically and prophetically. There are those who pastor and teach. The Lord is releasing women again to co-labor alongside the men; men and women together are working towards this end. Increasingly there are regional initiatives within the simple/organic church movement that provide training and encouragement for all the churches. Frequently women are responsible for these initiatives.
Subscribe to Get Simply Church Updates
Join our mailing list to get occasional updates from me!
6 replies on “Setting Women Free”
‘Today, at least within the simple church movement, there are no theological barriers to women moving into their destiny in the Kingdom of God.’
I have been studying the simple/organic church movement. From the get go, this has totally been my understanding, since in most simple/organic church models, they go out of their way to eliminate authoritative spiritual headship. Instead, we are told leadership is done from the ‘bottom up,’, leading by example, and using relationships in God to equip the saints. Since this is totally organic, and not done through some appointment by an organization with bi-laws against women, any woman could certainly do this.
That’s why I find it most curious that you write so much about woman’s equality. Certainly it is an issue in institutional churches where centuries of traditions provide much of the inspiration for their rule books. If I were to write about challenges and concerns from that mindset, I could write about men who don’t go to seminary. Since, after all, a man who has not gone to seminary school does not have many more opportunities are ‘church leadership’ as a woman does.
In discussing ‘organic leadership’ opportunities with multiple people, I honestly do not often find that cultural bias towards gender, or one’s self image based on such, to be the largest hindrance. In fact, I can hardly remember it being brought up at all. Instead, the largest hurdles are usually a lack of faith and empowerment brought on through years of living in an institutional society.
Of course, that’s just my opinion and hardly scientific. And with so many blogs already on simple churches and ways to empower people, I imagine it’s an eventuality that someone will hit on this point (whether gender concerns slow down true church growth and movements). Personally, I would like to continue talk about simple/organic church continue to grow since it really addresses many of these issues right from the get-go. We can certainly discuss concerns about women’s roles, like any other aspect (such as the role of children, old people and teenagers). I would just hate for any one aspect to become too much of a focus.
I agree with you that they should not be an issue, but sadly, in many situations it still is. Like you say, this is mostly when people from an institutional church get involved in simple church. When starting churches with new believers, it is never a problem.
I have nearly finished with this topic now. Just a couple more posts and then it will probably not be mentioned again for a while.
I really don’t want to come across on the negative here. Just to clarify, I’m not I disagree with your viewpoint. Just ask my wife 🙂 I’m just can’t wait to see more of your blogs on other organic church topics. I guess I’m biased 🙂
thanks Felicity…it’s good that root/foundational issues are being tackled, for those who still hold back – then the walls can be built more strongly..
for me this issue goes back to the Garden, so is foundational to many other things [of understanding and the Kingdom], as it is part of what the new Covenant restored
I rekon it does need to be dealt with, and proably repeatedly, in a very thoroughgoing way. (I like Gordon Fee BTW). Keep up the good work on all topics!
Just one thing, I dont rekon ‘the Lord is releasing women again’, He doesn’t need to! we just got ourselves deluded there for awhile …. ; )
If there is no need to address this subject in simple church settings, then why has the army of women spoken about in prophetic scripture not taken their roles in leading the spread of the gospel in our nation?
The influence of the institutional church and its bondage is still prevalent in our thinking concerning women. The result is a passivity and lack of action in picking up the word of the Lord and the presence of God and impacting the the world with the kingdom of God.
Women are at grass roots level, working to bring life in its many forms. We should be changing the world as quickly and as easily as we change diapers. But we are waiting, assuming that the direction we should go is indicated to by others. Women have the right and the responsibility to know what needs changing and to know where God has begun to move.
This dialog has been awakening to many as to the depth of lassitude imposed by religious ideas concerning women. Men may now take the opportunity to raise women up to fullfill the plan that Satan has hindered in so many ways for so very long. In doing so, Christ may be formed in each of us, taking the place, by going low, and being raised, that Jesus has prepared ahead of us. Isn’t this the time to become like him?