Evangelical women get a bad rap.
These days, the world conceives of evangelical women as little more than Christian Stepford wives. They look pretty, they obey their husbands, and they churn out babies like there’s no tomorrow. And if they’re really good, they’ll get their own reality t.v. series about what it’s like to homeschool 16 kids.
This is not, however, accurate.
Yes, some evangelicals fit that category, but evangelical women are far more courageous and independent than they are given credit for.
Recently I read an article in which Paige Patterson, President of Southwestern Seminary, wrote the following,
“The women of Southwestern are not wimps, and they are sold out to the task of taking the Gospel to the ends of the earth…[they] are willing to go to the places where e-mails are sent home full of cryptic shorthand because publicly declaring the message of Christ could come at the cost of their lives.”
What’s interesting about this article is that Southwestern is a Southern Baptist seminary. What’s more, this Southern Baptist seminary has been the subject of much controversy due to its strict stance on biblical womanhood. Patterson does not, however, sound like the stereotypical woman-hater he’s often caricatured to be.
That said, while I myself have not always towed the Southern Baptist line, Patterson is right on. Yes, some evangelical women are just looking for a husband. And some women are submissive because they never really learned to think for themselves.
But you know what, that’s really true of just about every demographic.
The truth is that countless evangelical woman are going out into the world and risking their lives for the Gospel, some even without husbands! They consider their lives nothing for the sake of Christ, so they are going into countries where many other Christians are afraid to go.
Last time I checked, that wasn’t really a part of the “wallflower” job description.
But what is even more interesting is that women are actually trend setters in their risk-taking endeavors. At my own church, I can probably count on one hand the number of men who have gone on the mission field, but I’ve lost count of how many women have gone overseas. I say that not to make the men look bad, but to add that women aren’t simply waiting on men to do this important work. They’re taking initiative in fighting this good fight.
All of that to say, if you are an evangelical woman, the legacy being set for you is far more than the culture would have you think. Our generation is producing women who are heroes of the faith, women who are strong and women who will risk their lives for Christ. That is who we are, and that is where we are going.
So don’t you let anyone tell you you’re a shrinking violet. If the world wants to find a wallflower, kindly encourage them to start looking elsewhere.