Equality is a God Idea

God created men and women equally in His likeness, equality was God’s idea, confirmed through the life of Jesus who often challenged the oppressive culture of the day.

Canadians “appear” to be progressive in gender equality and maybe in contrast to other cultures we have progressed somewhat, but I believe we have more work to do. Both men and women have to confront and take ownership of the ways they contribute to gender inequality. It’s subtle, under the surface, but it’s still present, showing up in comments like “People experience things differently” as an excuse for abusive or inappropriate behaviour.

I must confront my own bias and the things I have accepted as “that’s just the way they are” and stand up for my sisters, my daughters and myself. Being raised in a traditional home, equality and empowerment was not modelled or celebrated and this creates a barrier for me to advocate for myself and other women because I have to breakdown beliefs that are ingrained and hard wired in me.

I sit around a few tables of high level leaders, CEO’s, Pastor’s and Entrepreneurs, mostly men and I don’t usually entertain the thought that my voice could hold less weight then theirs.
Canadians don’t like to sound uneducated, archaic or intolerant but in regards to gender inequality, when push comes to shove, guess who is going down? Just turn the conversation to “Me too” and you will hear rationalization, excuses, diminishing and straight up disbelief from men who go into self-preservation mode and make comments like “it’s really hard to be a man today.” That’s not to say that women are any better in this narrative, women can be so hard on other women, they criticize, judge and blame, victims become villains as this cycle of pain and brokenness continues.

As I am preparing to launch a Women’s Conference I have had many men say to me, what about the men. What are we doing for men? So much so that I have begun to feel like I need to qualify what we are doing when I am talking with a man. Recently, a man said to me, “Men have had their turn for thousands of years, it’s time for women.” Wow, that was unexpected, imagine what it could be for men and women to live and work side by side as equals. We’ve got some work to do.

Women rising to a place of equality in the world is not a threat to men. If God’s perfect plan included both men and women to come to Him as equals, and if the curse of sin broke that perfect plan, then we have a choice to make. Do we continue to play into the broken narrative of sinfulness and inequality? Or do we live a “Kingdom now” narrative that includes an equal place for all at the table? You choose.

How Do I Hear the Voice of God?

One of the things I’m asked often is: How does God speak? It can be frustrating and discouraging when you pray and ask God for answers or when you are looking for a sign and don’t seem to hear anything. God doesn’t usually answer in our time, and often the answer is not the one we want to hear. These obstacles can make it hard to recognize his voice in our lives.

The primary way that God speaks is through the Bible. The Bible is full of truths and promises that are meant to give you hope, answers and direction. But in order for the Bible to really speak to you, you have to believe that it’s true. It takes faith to believe that the Bible is true. Believing the Bible is true does not mean that you understand everything, or agree with everything in the Bible, but it’s important that you accept it as God’s word to you, given to you for your ultimate good.

If you are looking for answers, open the Bible and God will speak to you. Ask others you trust to help you interpret what He is saying to you. God loves you more than you could ever know and He wants you to get to know him through the Bible. He gave us the Bible to help us, to set us free, to give us hope and purpose. Before you read it, ask God to speak to you and just watch what He will do!

Awakening Moments

Life is full of amazing moments. But the most amazing moments usually aren’t planned, expected, or even grandiose. Of course there is joy in working towards a big event or a party or project but the most amazing moments in life happen in the mundane, everyday rhythms. Imagine if we woke up everyday recognizing all the special, meaningful and profound moments that life presents us?

One day I was sitting on the couch with 2 of my 4 teenagers. My son said, “Mom, listen to this song with me.” I thought in my head, I should go finish the laundry or finish up some work but instead I stayed with him. As the song began I could feel something begin to shift inside of me, this was no ordinary song. He said, “Settle in, the song is 20 minutes long.”

As I layed on the couch with 2 of my teens, resting and listening to this song, tears began to stream down my face and my kids faces too. It was a moment, a moment I will never forget. It was an awakening moment that shifted something inside of me and I almost missed it for LAUNDRY???

Awakening moments have a ripple effect. A few days later I took the same song to my staff team and asked them to rest as they listened to the words. The same thing happened, we cried together, prayed together, praised and listened to God and each other and so the effects of awakening moments continue.

There are awakening moments everyday. Watch, wait, and embrace the moments that really matter in the mundane of life because those are the most important ones of all!