2 comments Written on September 4th, 2013     
Filed under: Testimonies and Stories
Submitted by
Pastor Gricel Medina (OWS)
BGE Chairperson

brokenDuring a visit with a group of women I heard many stories of brokenness that drove me to my knees in prayer.

Stories of women who have undergone extreme sorrow and emotional pain in the workplace and personally. Women trying to do it all in a world that demands us to be all in all. Men who have been intentionally and unintentionally insensitive.

Proverbs 15: 13
A joyful heart makes a cheerful face,
But when the heart is sad, the spirit is broken.

That day was an awakening for me. It was a startling revelation to see visibly the brokenness still found in women trying to juggle family and work. Women who are gifted, talented, called and unique but so broken by the circumstances of life.

Women who feel neglected, abandoned and shunned for not meeting the unrealistic expectations of their immediate families, co-workers, and even the church.

Women who suffer in silence. They are told to suck it up and that this is still a man’s world so get with the program. If Lord forbid…women share their struggles with others they are further shunned and labeled complainers or worst yet whiners.

I was once told by a male colleague that he was sick of all these whiners in his church. He was bitterly declaring that he was unwilling to hear the brokenness found in people. How sad!

My question is why are we here?
Jesus came to heal the broken hearted and to set the captive free.

Many are bleeding inside the church.
The demands placed on women are getting more and more ridiculous. I must admit that some of these demands are self-imposed. However, some are imposed by men who have become silent killers of visionary women.

Traditional roles at home still dictate that women need to be the perfect housekeeper, the perfect wife, and yes of course the perfect parent with perfect children. We need to bring home the bacon and cook it too. Why do we keep putting up with this nonsense?

Boundaries need to be part of the overall conversation for women when it comes to roles in the family and ministry.

Much of the brokenness I heard that day came from trying to do too much.
Finding no one willing to lend a hand or encourage. Thinking we needed to do it all.

Women are showing visible signs of burnout. More women are suffering heart attacks or strokes at an earlier age.

It is time we begin to address the brokenness in ways that build one another not shame or blame.

We all need help sometimes. Why is it so hard for women to say no? Why do we feel we have to do it all? Why is it difficult to speak out? Are men expecting things from women they are unwilling to do themselves? Are we allowing other women to keep putting us in these confining straight jackets? How crazy is that?

We desperately need to have the courage to speak up when our hearts are overwhelmed or shunned by others.

May we all seek out a listening ear.
May we be sensitive to the brokenness in others and ourselves.
May we pray instead of shame those who are broken….remembering that we may need prayer when we go through our own brokenness.
May we find healing instead of condemnation.
May we give hope in time of need.
May we forgive the insensitivity of others along the journey.
(I know it is hard to do)
May we find abundant grace through and in our brokenness.
If you are in a place of brokenness be encouraged. God is committed to you no matter what has been shattered in your life. If the men (or the women) that surround you are insensitive… Be willing to give them a reality check.

Celebrate who you are and where you are in life. You are called and gifted.
Broken at times but never forsaken.
Let us advocate for each other in this season of change.

May we find an anchor of hope as sisters in Christ being empowered by each other in the struggles and the victories.

I covet your prayers as BGE undergoes many changes.

Keep us and the mission of Biblical Gender Equality close to your heart. May we accelerate our progress and not digress in our fervent vision to visibly display what we proclaim.

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2 comments “Broken”

Thank you Gricel your words are much appreciated. In gathering with and listening to women in many locations, I hear so many stories that reflect what you speak of. Proverbs 15:3 and Christ prayer for us to have full measure of Joy, in close proximity, speak to the tension many many women live in every day. M any women desiring to be fully alive in ones abilities, contributing fully to caring for humanity as God has equipped us to, find ourselves living in a world foundationally grounded in patriarchal practice, literally a system of entrenched gender bias practices sometimesstrengthened further by personal gender prejudice. For women too, there is the layering of systemic oppression of gender bias, racism, singleness and classism that relentlessly crushes many of my sisters. I am thankful for men and women who are on the journey of self examination of their own positions of power and privelege and who are making decisions daily to alter injustice. And the road is very very long! In the real stories, of real women, in real time the pain of experiencing systemic injustice and personally held gender prejudice is deeply present. May our prayers be joined together by the Holy Spirit before the Lord.

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Thank you Mary. More need to join the journey of self-examination. 
Very well said. Keep praying and speaking.  

May others speak that we may hear and be convicted.
Convicted to change…

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