Finding God, self, and community in wild spaces. The better we know our wild neighbors the more we'll discover ourselves.
A vision informed by Henry David Thoreau’s interpretation of sauntering, Jesus’ understanding of neighbor, Aldo Leopold’s concept of thinking like a mountain, Rachel Carson’s prophetic voice and John Muir’s way of capturing the beauty and uniqueness of wild neighbors with words.

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Allies for empowerment

I want to share something that has been encouraging to me. Three times during the past three days I have happened upon conversations with empowered women who work to empower other women. You may be chuckling about me, a 35 year old man writing about women’s empowerment; but I am writing about it because it is important to me. I have a wife as well as friends and colleagues who are women and I want all of them to know that they are empowered by God to make a huge impact in this world for good. I’m also thankful that there are women with a bigger platform than I have here who can share this message of empowerment with greater effectiveness than me.

Lately it was the waitress at a restaurant in Orlando who is also a model.She says that since she is not the stereotypical shape of a model she sees it as an opportunity to empower young women by challenging the stereotype of what women are “supposed” to look like; to send a message to young women and girls that you are beautiful just the way you are, because that’s who God made you to be. Thank you Anna.

Then there was Brooke; a licensed professional counselor who invests herself in a social media platform through which she is working to empower all kinds of women dealing with all kinds of brokenness discover or rediscover their empowerment in God’s love through words, pictures, and videos. Thank you Brooke.

And finally there is my friend and  colleague Victoria who, as a woman in pastoral ministry, gave me some helpful tips about what I can be doing to empower the women who are members of the church which I serve as pastor. Thank you Victoria.

Victoria has informed me that since I am a man who is for women being empowered, that makes me an ally.

I will always be an ally working for the empowerment of women as well as other social groups that are fighting to have the kind of privilege that I was born into as a white male.

I will work for the empowerment of women, minorities, the LGBTQ community and others. I will work to empower those who are marginalized, rejected, despised, overlooked and ignored because that’s what I see Jesus doing in the Gospel accounts and that’s what I see the Spirit of God doing today.

I will continue to serve as an ally and I will always have ears to hear and a heart that is open to learning how I can do that better by listening to voices like Victoria’s.

This is a deep commitment of mine because I believe God knows, loves, and empowers each and every one of us with a Divine purpose and plan.

The greatest tragedy would be to miss ones calling due to a lack of encouragement and support from community.

I want the whole world, one person at a time,  to know that we are all known, loved, and empowered by God.

Are you with me?

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