Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Identity, part 2

Having previously written about how we all want to have our cake and eat it too when it comes to gender identity issues, I thought I would dig a little deeper into the internal nuances of female gender identity.

Women want relationships.  It is inherent to our creature code.  Really, it is a human condition but women seem to have it intensified.  More than anything else (under normal conditions), we want to love and be loved.  There are things that complicate that singular focus but that is the underlying desire and motivation.

Discussion recently occurred in my ladies' Bible study about what really happened to women at the Fall in the Genesis account.  In Genesis 3:16, God tells Eve that her desire shall be for her husband. We know that that curse was not just to Eve but women throughout all of time so it has always fascinated me. I had always heard that interpreted as a power struggle thing.  That women want to be in charge and so we nag and bitch and try to get men to do what we want.  I think there is reason to suspect a second aspect or interpretation here.

Desire for husband does not have to be solely about power.  As relational beings, the other cry besides "He never listens to me" is "He isn't romantic, show he loves me, talk to me, etc."  Once a relationship has begun, the individuals often forget that they were friends before they were something else.  And that intimacy is lost.  The thing that attracted you to another human's soul is gone.

But really, it isn't a matter of it being gone.  It is a matter of it being invisible, hidden.  Satan does his best work when there is a lack of relationship - between God, between spouses, parents, friends.  If we know that, how hard should we fight to keep our relationships alive?

That is hard for us, for women.  It requires us to acknowledge that at the Fall, along with Eve, we said we would rather have knowledge than safety and intimacy and relationship.  And that choice haunts us every single day.  Insecurities crowd our minds and tell us that we are not worth loving, worth befriending.  Those voices are loud.  So very loud.  Or our inadequacies become so glaringly obvious that everyone has to see that I am not a good wife, mother, sister, friend.  What do we do to quiet them?  Or even to minimize them so that we can try to think something else...

Praise God that our identity is in Him.  He is the one who can speak louder than our voices.  He is the one who loves bigger than our inadequacies.  There is nothing man or woman can do that will separate them from the love of God.  And that is the best identity.

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