Women's History Month: Women of Influence, Part 2

Posted on Mar 30, 2021

Women's History Month: Women of Influence, Part 2

In the second part of our two-part series in celebration of Women’s History Month, female Chase Oaks staff share their views on the changing roles and influence of women, as well as their hopes for future generations of women to come.

What is a change you have seen in attitudes toward or about women?

  • A desire for them to feel empowered by the Lord and created for a purpose
  • In the decade since I've graduated college, I've seen [a] shift towards gender-neutralizing expectations - you don't do something "like a girl" as much, and there's more of an acceptance that I can equally carry the workload that a man could.
  • More value for motherhood, and [women’s] contributions in the workplace.
  • I think with the “Me Too” movement, I saw conversations happening that had not taken place previously, which was really encouraging to me.
  • I have seen the professional limitations and role ceilings come down for women…more opportunities for women to step into leadership, be respected and come to the table has been a really cool thing to see.
  • As a Gen Z-er, I think a lot of people are very aware of women's capabilities and historic mistreatment. In my lifetime, I have seen some amazing changes in attitudes towards women, especially in the church.
  • I have seen that in some cases, women and their voices have finally been heard and taken seriously by society. In others, not so much, but any improvement is better than none in my opinion.
  • Women have been seen as people more, not as objects. Women have been seen as more for their brains, their worth, their gifts than what they should do for someone else. Respect has been given more. There is still work, but that is a change.

What is a change related to women in society or the church that you would like to see?

  • I'd love to see less of a gap between the roles men and women fill on staff [in the church].
  • I would like to see real women in pictures, tv, magazines. (i.e., less pressure to look perfect)
  • Normalize singleness! We aren't made complete when we get married or when we have children. We don't need to strive after the next season of life so much that we feel discontent in our current stage.
  • More women in leadership positions within the church. More professors that are women at theology institutions.
  • How cool would it be to hear regularly from women who love Jesus and can inspire others as well?
  • Chase Oaks is unique. I don't think most churches have deconstructed the difference between God's design for men and women and cultural stereotypes and expectations…God's view of womanhood also leaves room for the unconventional: Deborah the warrior and judge, Jael the tent-peg killer, the Proverbs 31 achiever, Phoebe the deacon, Esther the queen. We should…actually look to the Bible for what God endorses as a godly woman.
  • A woman's word ought to have as much weight as a man's does.
  • Help women in leadership roles find mentors and other leaders to help guide them and keep them in community.
  • I'd like to see women teaching more…enough for young girls to see a role in church world aside from children's ministry/worship ministry or an administrative role I would like for ageism to not affect women the way it currently does. Women are still judged by their outward appearance, not for who they are on the inside and what they can accomplish.

If you could encourage future generations of women with one message, what would it be?

  • Be braver, take the chance! Listen to the Holy Spirit when you feel a nudge to do things that you might think are beyond your reach.
  • This culture has made it exponentially hard to believe we are enough, you are loved AS YOU ARE. I know, I have tried so many ways to make myself enough for others to accept, but not too much where they may deny me. That’s a lot to try to control…From an eating disorder, to self-harm, addictions, suppressing my emotions, & walling up and not letting anyone in - I was feeling the pressure to be perfect. It was when I realized how flawed I was and how accepted I was that I could really lean into the life & love God called me into.
  • Listen to what God's calling is on your life, instead of letting others tell you what it should and shouldn't be.
  • Fan girl your friends! That other woman are not competitions, but warriors like you and me. Celebrate their victories and mourn their losses. Become their biggest fan!
  • Ask God [what your role is]. Look to the scriptures and marvel at the great ways He used women.
  • Being a woman is crazy hard but seriously incredible.
  • From Beth Moore: "Sisters, if you wait around for all the brothers to agree on what to call you, you'll wait your life away. Follow Jesus. Find acceptance in his affection for you. Share the gospel. Study at His feet like Mary of Bethany. Love God. Do people good. Serve with gladness and humility."
  • Encourage, look out for each other, and help one another.
  • Love yourself because God first loved you. Be real and honest with yourself and then you can be real with others.
  • There are no second-hand citizens in His church.
  • The Lord has a plan though it may not make sense or look hopeful. Job 38:4-7
  • Don't find your voice in being a "man basher." Just let God work through you and that is where your voice comes from.
  • No matter what you have been through or where you have come from, never be afraid to step into who God made you to be. His plan is so much better than ours. He has a purpose for your life. Whether that is being single, being a stay-at-home mom, leading a Fortune 500 company or discovering a cure for COVID, live into your strengths unapologetically, giving all the glory to God.

The responses above represent a diversity of backgrounds, ages, and perspectives, but they all share a vision for women's unique roles and contributions to the world in which we live.

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