Stepping It Up
I'm doing what I'm about to do for a few reasons:
- Because my wife is the most amazing person I know;
- Which leads her to be right most of the time.
- Because I cannot be an inactive feminist.
- Because people are writing and doing good things that the world needs to hear about.
Lynnette's recent post about women in church leadership has lingered in my mind the last few days. There is no doubt that women are doing amazing things the world over, but due to deeply embedded social constructs, their stories don't get told much.
Each Friday, I will profile a different religious female blogger. I would like you, my readers, to check out her site, add it to your links, favorites and bookmarks, and tell one person to do the same thing. If we are to tear down the discriminatory walls that have been built over the millennia, it will take a lot of us wielding a lot of hammers.
Stepping It Up Profile #1: Ann Catherine Pittman
It is kind of easy to write about Ann. She is one of Lynnette's dearest friends and a charter member of the Pastors' Wives Club at Truett Seminary. When I first met Ann, I could tell she was smart and probably a lot of fun. Through the years, I've found both adjectives to be true.
Her blog is an attempt to keep her family and friends up to date on her life, but even if you don't know her, you'll want to read her. She often posts sermons and lessons she prepares as a pastor for First Baptist Church in Austin, Texas. They're good reads. All of them. She is also able to find the hidden spiritual truths in the everyday events of her life, which usually involve humor, beauty and service.
Here's an excerpt:
I think about the people who died in the Wilderness waiting for the Promised Land and it reminds me of all the people today who will never see a promise land. I think of Anne Frank and the millions of other Jews who thought the Promised Land was coming, that they would escape hiding and be freed from the concentration camps. On July 15, 1944 Anne wrote: “It’s really a wonder I haven’t dropped all of my ideals, because they seem so absurd and impossible to carry out. Yet I keep them, because in spite of everything I still believe that people are really good at heart. I simply can’t build up my hopes on a foundation consisting of confusion, misery, and death. I see the world gradually being turned into a wilderness, I hear the ever approaching thunder, which will destroy us too, I can feel the suffering of millions and yet, if I look up into the heavens, I think that I will all come right, that this cruelty too will end, and that peace and tranquility will return again. In the meantime, I must uphold my ideals, for perhaps the time will come when I shall be able to carry them out.” Anne Frank died in a concentration camp in March 1945. She never made it outside of the Wilderness and into the Promised Land.
On a larger scale I think of others who may never make it out of the wilderness: I think of the starving children in India, of the victims of genocide in Rwanda, the orphans in Indonesia, the 2 out of every five people dying of AIDS in Africa: these are people who live in the Wilderness literally, daily. Until you’ve walked in their urine, touched their mangled faces, looked away from their bloated bellies you haven’t seen the wilderness at its worst. To the ungrateful Israelites, God dropped manna from the sky, brought pheasants from the earth and water from a rock. But who feeds the starving now? Who heals the sick? Who rescues the oppressed? Who adopts the orphaned?
Go read the whole thing