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I got on the phone with a number of like-minded women, who are also moms and floated the idea of a “retreat for the whole woman.”

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When we read an obituary in the newspaper, we see the visible side of a person’s life — his or her church or organization memberships and accomplishments in life. What we don’t read, however, is how the person touched others in some special way. I’d like to share how Mom spiritually touched the lives of my sister Wendy and me.

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When the news of my mom’s death spread throughout my congregation and the naval base in Port Hueneme, Calif., I began to learn about the kindred spirit that exists among women who have lost their mothers. These women cried with me and told me, “There is something deep that happens in our souls when a woman loses her mother.” All of these women talked of mothers who loved them and modeled that every woman can be all that God wants her to be.

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The widespread misunderstandings and mistranslations resulting in gender hierarchy are damaging to people, marriages and the body of Christ. I am going to start by diving into the most famous (or infamous) passage on marriage in Ephesians Chapter 5. It’s amazing to discover what this passage really says!

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I was raised in a very traditional, Southern Baptist environment, but my parents, even though they were not taught egalitarian principles, sort of figured out that that was the way it had to be. 

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A father suddenly catches a glimpse of his daughter’s ministry gifts, gifts he was told women didn’t have. A mother, in tears, describes her vision of a different future for her daughters, one without restrictions and roles. And a parent grieves over the way young women are treated as less valuable, intelligent or competent than young men.

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Christy believes many women struggle with their body because they aren’t encouraged to pursue what they love and instead are confined to certain roles. Within this framework, a woman’s body is often the only tool she has to gain influence or control.

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A man and woman are seen on stage. The man has two envelopes in his hands. The words "To: Husbands" are written on one envelope, and "To: Wives" is written on the other. The man holds the envelopes so the audience can read the inscriptions. He takes the message from the envelope marked "To: Wives" and reads it quickly.

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The following story comes from my own life. It celebrates God’s faithfulness to a daughter who longed for her mother to know the joy of encountering God’s Spirit in Scripture.

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The Junior Bible Quiz (JBQ) is a children’s discipleship ministry of the Assemblies of God that motivates kids to learn and love the Bible. We have taken the issue of gender accuracy and children’s faith development very seriously.

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