Today’s post is a guest post by a single sister in Christ in her 30s. I so appreciate her willingness to share with us what God is showing her!
I have often heard of the battle of sexes. There are jokes, books, television shows, and frequent general conversations about this very topic. I am actually quite bothered by this.
I do not think men have it easier. I do not think women have it easier. Honestly, both genders have aspects that are really hard to deal with, without help from God. Sometimes we resent the opposite gender simply out of ignorance.
Ladies, have you ever stopped to truly think about the messages that we (collectively) have sent to men?
I will give you a couple of scenarios:
Jill goes to church and is walking in carrying a few bags. Matt and Mark see her come in and ask if she needs help. She thanks them and accepts the help. Mary walks over to Jill and asks why on earth she let men take her back to the 50s era, when men acted as if women are not capable of simple tasks. Jill assures Mary that while yes, she could have carried all of the stuff, it was nice to not have a large load trying to maneuver through doors and make sure her outfit doesn’t creep up, and that she is thankful they were willing to help her.
Rachel and Sarah are speaking with a group of men at church. John comments on how appreciates that Rachel is always dressed modestly and femininely. Rachel smiles warmly and thanks him sincerely for the compliment. The men walk off and Sarah says to Rachel, “Rach, I didn’t know you were in to John. Why haven’t you told me?” Rachel tells Sarah that she is not interested romantically in John. Sarah asked her why she was kind to John and not insulted, if she wasn’t interested. Rachel told her that genuinely appreciated being a blessing to her brothers in Christ by not showing off her body. Sarah became agitated and told her that she was a grown woman and could do whatever she wanted and that she was not responsible for how men reacted.
Femininity is a beautiful gift, but we (again, not all, speaking collectively) have manipulated and distorted it into something twisted. In the 1st scenario Mary is appalled that Jill would accept help from a man for a simple task. She assumed the men were trying to “keep her in her place”. The men were innocently concerned that she might be having trouble with her load. When did it become so offensive to help someone?
In the 2nd scenario Sarah is completely fine with Rachel “putting on an act” of sincerity over a compliment, since she wanted to be involved with John. Upon finding out that Rachel is not interested in John as a potential date, Sarah becomes furious that Rachel would agree with such a sexist mindset. So often, femininity is accepted when it benefits us, but offensive when it benefits our brothers.
Do we honestly not understand why our brothers have backed off?
If they offer to help with a large box, they are sexist because we can do it ourselves. If they do not offer to help with a large box, they are rude and inconsiderate. If they appreciate that you dress modestly and thank you, they are an uncivilized pig. But they are “just so welcome” if they are a potential love interest. If they don’t openly appreciate that you dress modestly, they must be worldly and putting on an act. I am not saying that our brothers have no faults. They are fallen, just as we are. I am not instructed to teach them.
We have done so much damage to our brothers over the years. I would be scared to death to speak to a lady, if I were a single man. We complain that they don’t act like men, but we are severely offended when they ask us to act like ladies. I was speaking to 2 of my male friends recently. I asked them both, how we as single ladies can bless them? Their answers shocked me.
- The first man said, “YOUR CLOTHES! I don’t think you ladies know just how much the right (wrong) clothes trigger sinful thoughts. We don’t actively seek lustful thoughts and it is such a blessing for a woman to dress modestly”. The other man agreed, and added “Yoga pants are hard on a brother.”
- The second man said, “Don’t assume that just because I believe in submission that I think you don’t have a valid opinion and that I think you are automatically always wrong because you are a woman”. He said that he values the opinion of quite a few women in his life, because he knows that godly women bring a softness and different perspective. He said that he loves discussing scripture with women and appreciates what we bring to the table.
I was astonished that such simple requests could be such a blessing. They didn’t ask we stand on one foot, sing Amazing Grace while drinking water, and do 20 backflips in a row. These 2 men (I realize they do not speak for all men) asked that we dress modestly and not make assumptions. Wow! I can definitely be guilty of making assumptions, if I am not careful. His statement was an eye opener for me. I know so many people speak about dressing modestly. It doesn’t hurt us to be mindful of our clothing. We are well aware of how our clothes hug our body. We view our outfits from every single angle. We do not dress immodestly innocently. We know what draws the eye to certain parts of our body.
I pray that we can be a blessing to our brothers and not see them as the enemy. How have you been a blessing to a brother in Christ?