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yes, i am.

I am a woman. I can roar louder than most, but I’d rather you hear my pumping heart, beating loudly with life and love that runs deep & thick through each vein.

I’m intelligent but not always logical.

I carry the weight of my hips & the weight of the world; I’m stronger than I look & I’m stronger than I feel.

I see theology in the laundry piles and I build altars with dirty dishes. I live a faith that's brittle around the edges but I'm not as easily moved as you'd think.

I am made in the image of God and I am emotional. I don’t want to keep my feelings bound up in the bars of my ribcage. My heart bleeds and cries with the broken things of the world and I am not ashamed.

Stop telling me it’s not okay to feel.

I am a relentless woman.

I am a mother.

I have given birth. I have labored and pushed out life into this world with my own body and I am a partner in creations new.

I am a fearsome thing to behold.

And even on the hardest days, I hold a fierce love that could set a forest on fire with the smallest kindling.

I am a survivor.

I have clawed my way through the valley of death and I did fear evil because it reigned in my mind. I continue to walk the hills of depression but I know that the hurt means I’m alive and isn’t that a gift?

My skin has been sliced and diced by words and knives alike and the scar tissue doesn’t numb the remembering but it makes me stronger than I was when I started.

Yes, I am a relentless woman.

We are relentless women.

We are feminists.

We're told to step out of the pulpit, to stop teaching and ask permission. Go ahead, keep talking behind your closed doors. We'll just keep living our lives like they're the greatest sermons we could preach. The Holy Spirit poured out through us will always be the beautiful symphony to your clanging symbols of oppressive commentary.

When a woman walks into a room full of men, you can feel the air shift into balance and that is how it should be.

We have a seat at the table. You just choose not to see it.

We are your equal.

Jesus told us to make disciples, so we're not going to stop pointing to Him just because we're women. We have come from dust and to dust we shall return, but right now? This moment? We stand here with skin and a mouth and lungs that breathe wild air and we're going to spend our time shepherding, leading, guiding and teaching those that are entrusted to our care.

We pray for you, brother.

We pray that the scales of your eyes would be peeled back so you can see that we're the piece you've been missing. We finish the painting. We are half of the whole. We pray that you begin to see that empty seat at the table - and when a woman fills that seat, there is finally an accurate representation of the character of God among those who shepherd His Church.

We know it's a big shift - that we're asking you to move in a direction counter to what you've always known. We understand that it might take a while for that change to happen - to realize that our views are biblical, too.

That's okay.

We'll wait.

But in the meantime, a fair warning: We will not be silent. 

 

(an edited & reworked post from the archives)