Dear Female Pastor (or the Woman Called to Pastor),
Chances are you are reading this wounded by the World and wounded by members of the body of Christ. Chances are you have been thrown these verses when it comes to the call God has set before you...
"I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet" -1 Timothy 2:12.
"The women are to keep silent in the churches; for they are not permitted to speak, but are to subject themselves, just as the Law also says" (1 Corinthians 14:34).
Chances are you have heard them just as I have. Chances are each time someone tells them to you you are either deflated or filled with anger. You can fight back with the culture and context and try to inform them of the gender inequality that occurred during the time the scriptures were written. But people are not easily persuaded because their whole lives they have been taught these verses at face value instead of asking "why?", why should women be quiet? It does say that women should be silent but why? It says it because in the times of the biblical audience women could not enter further than the women's court. They did not receive the same education. But we are fighting a teaching that has also been taught that God's Word doesn't change, it doesn't but our Lord came and pushed for women. We see it through Jesus' teachings and those He reached for. You see God could see how His girls were being treated and He also knew change would not occur culturally for a long time. It is not good for any pastor/teacher to teach without first being taught. That still stands and will forevermore.
I have my Bachelors of Science in Religion with a focus in Biblical and Theological Studies and a minor in Biblical Studies. In two weeks I start my Masters program in Theology with a focus in Biblical Studies and yet even though we wrote the same papers, paid the same tuition rates (well, we get a military discount...), we read the same information, took the same tests a man will be lifted higher simply because of his gender. Not because of what he produces. I can say that a man with fewer qualifications has been chosen over me... and I can't lie, IT HURTS.
The church is so quick to cling to these verses like 1 Timothy and 1 Corinthians and hate it because they can't make Judges 4 disappear where a woman name Deborah leads Israel... "But she was directly called by God", that was an excuse someone gave me once. But I can stand now on my two feet and declare the God of Deborah that called her... is calling me. And when people reject my call they are not just rejecting this woman but they are rejecting God's judgement on who He calls. So which is the greater sin, teaching when called by the Most High or rejecting God's choice?
So fellow called sister, here is what I am writing for today; "I have a dream", I have a dream that through seeing us teach and preach the church stops seeing and starts hearing. I pray that don't realize our gender as much as they realize HIS message that He has through us. I pray that God goes before us and with us in everything we do and His anointing on our lives is evident. I pray we baptize the masses and those "haters" who once threw us verses to try and stop us are silenced by the sound of more feet entering the Kingdom because of God moving through us.
You will see younger girls that are just starting to answer the call get slammed on social media or in person. I am making my goal to not "fight" with the one who is pushing the 1st Timothy verse or the 1st Corinthians verse but instead I am going to type or look her in the eyes and say, "Your teaching has blessed me! Thank you for being obedient to the Christ and allowing Him to work though you". Let's encourage each other, sisters. The world/ the church is harsh. When I am having moments of doubt if it is worth being slammed and less because God made me a wife and mother... because He made me a woman, I am terribly blessed that my God reminds me of all the people who have accepted Him because I chose to answer the call daily. And I am brought to tears when He whispers, "Thank you for fighting for them. Thank you for walking with me". How many have I not fought for because I was a woman... and I should have? Well not anymore.... I will fight.
And when it hurts... because it will, God is there and His heart hurts for you too. You see, He called you and knows your job and He knows the people that He will bring to you. Those people are worth pushing through the ones who don't think a woman should be teaching. FLIP TABLES, sister. The Christ cleared the temple and threw tables because it was blocking "the least of these" from getting as close as they could... FLIP TABLES. We have The Mighty Ones approval we do not need anyone else's approval. And the Mighty One can take you coming to Him in tears and anger in prayer because it is frustrating. Family members do not support me, some brothers and sisters in Christ do not support me... but God does. And if He can take people rejecting His Lordship and crucifying Him than I can take these remarks because they are nothing compared to His Cross.
Encourage each other! A word of encouragement is sometimes the best medicine to rejection. Keep Answering His Call, DAILY. Speak and Preach boldly and passionately. GIVE PEOPLE JESUS WITH NO HESITATION.
Because He Lives,