How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. They cannot be numbered! I can’t even count them; they outnumber the grains of sand! And when I wake up, you are still with me! Psalm 139:17,18
On Wednesday, July 8th, during the General Conference Session, a friend approached me and said “What about me? I am a middle-age woman, I am not married, and I can not have children. Am I of no use for God? Will I never be able to attain the highest position a woman can have?” Hearing her express her pain, questioning her own worth, broke my heart and all I could do was hug her and tell her I loved her.
In trying to understand where she was coming from, I realized she was referring to a comment made that afternoon by a female delegate claiming that more recognition and dignity should be given to wives and mothers for that is a higher position than being a minster of the gospel and a king on his throne.
I assured my friend that the delegate did not speak for me, and many people in the Adventist church, and that surely she did not speak for Jesus, whom would have never said something like that for He is well known for valuing people for who they are regardless of what they have achieved.
I also mentioned to her that she did not need a husband or children to be complete for God created male and female in His image, in Him we are complete. The highest position a woman can ever attain is not that of being a mother but being the daughter of the Most High. The greatest calling has nothing to do with planning a wedding, having kids, or doing well in the kitchen, but by being a compassionate son or daughter of God who loves people like Jesus did; that’s dignity.
Yes, it is a blessing to be married and to have children and I thank God for my husband and boys everyday, but these blessings will never lead me to underestimate, mistreat, and put down other women. Who am I to say that this makes me more valuable, or that I have more virtue than a woman that has not been given the opportunity to marry or have a child? Who am I to consider myself worthy of more honor?
You see, I believe in a God that sees beyond our gender. A God so loving, and so great, that He desires for ALL of his children, male and female to attain their God-given talents and gifts to their fullest and highest potential. A God that will not be limited, boxed in, or confined to a check list of gender roles which are created by culture, but a God that desires ALL of his children to fulfill the great commission of spreading the good news of Jesus Christ.
I believe in a God that treasures, adores, and gives highest value and dignity to ALL of His children, whether male or female, Jew or Gentile, black, yellow, red or white. A God that does not need His children to conform to human made traditions and ‘roles’ which change with geographic locations and time, in order for Him to bless them, love them, and honor them because He is a God that gives without differentiating and discriminating.
If you are a woman, you are not married, and/or do not have children, remember God loves you. God has already placed value, dignity, and respect upon you. No one can tell you that you will never achieve the highest position a woman can have because you have already achieved that position by being a daughter of the Most High.
I love you! I admire your strength! and I pray the Holy Spirit pours out an abundance of blessings upon you! You are a woman of grace and poise for your value is not found in the opinions of humans but of an awesome God that cherishes you with all of His heart!
If you are hurt by the insensitive comments made by people who perhaps have the right intentions but ignore scripture, and God’s calling for your life, remember some women in the Bible that were used by God. Some were not married, some were widows, and some were childless, yet they were fulfilled for they accepted God’s call in their lives. They made a difference.
Miriam, the Bible does not mention that she had children, but she was the protecter of her baby brother Moses when he was placed in a basket in the river Nile, and then helped him lead the Israelites out of Egypt. (See Exodus 2, 15, Numbers 12, 20, 26 and Micah 6:4)
Jehosheba, the doting Aunt of King Joash did not have children but gave her life to protect her nephew and help bring godliness back to the kingdom of Judah. (See 2 Kings 11:1-21; 2 Chronicles 22:10-24:1.)
Huldah, a prophetess used by God to interpret scripture and speak truth to King Josiah is not mentioned to have had children. (See 2 Kings 22-24 and 2 Chronicles 34.)
Dorcas/Tabitha, is not mentioned to have been married or have any children but she allowed God to use her to show compassion to those in need. (See Acts 9:36-42.)
Anna, the prophetess at the temple who witnessed and had a significant role in the dedication of baby Jesus. The Bible mentions she was married for seven years and then became a widow for the rest of her life. (See Luke 2:36-38.)
Joanna, a follower and financial supporter of the ministry of Jesus. The Bible does not indicate she had children but does mention she followed Jesus together with the disciples. (See Luke 8:1-3, 23:55-24:12.)
Remember that the offering of the widow with 2 mites was accepted by God, while the offering of the majority who thought they owned the church was not (See Mark 12:41-44, Luke 21:1-4.)
Lord, please help me to see how valuable and worthy people are regardless of the gender roles society has placed on us. Please help me to respect the calling You have placed on others and to remind myself that You are bigger than my thoughts, greater than my fears, and Your love, compassion, and gifts are limitless.
For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. Jeremiah 29:11